STAND. COM. REP. NO. 296

 

Honolulu, Hawaii

 

RE: S.B. No. 948

 

 

 

Honorable Ronald D. Kouchi

President of the Senate

Thirty-Second State Legislature

Regular Session of 2023

State of Hawaii

 

Sir:

 

Your Committees on Agriculture and Environment and Water and Land, to which was referred S.B. No. 948 entitled:

 

"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO INVASIVE SPECIES,"

 

beg leave to report as follows:

 

The purpose and intent of this measure is to appropriate funds to allow the Division of Forestry and Wildlife to coordinate the removal of hazard Albizia trees that potentially threaten public and private land.

 

Your Committees received testimony in support of this measure from the Department of Land and Natural Resources, Hawaii Emergency Management Agency, University of Hawaii College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources, Energy and Climate Action Committee of the Environmental Caucus of the Democratic Party of Hawaii, and four individuals.

 

Your Committees find that invasive Albizia trees are a major hazard to natural areas, private property, and infrastructure in the State. Albizia can thrive in a broad range of habitats and threaten native ecosystems by its substantial dispersal of seeds that are carried by winds over long distances. Your Committees additionally find that Albizia trees in Hawaii are among the fastest growing trees on Earth. Their rapid growth rate produces massive trunks and limbs that are prone to sudden breakage and the collapse of enormous live branches. This measure appropriates funds to the Department of Land and Natural Resources to coordinate the removal of Albizia trees that pose a hazard to public and private lands.

 

As affirmed by the records of votes of the members of your Committees on Agriculture and Environment and Water and Land that are attached to this report, your Committees are in accord with the intent and purpose of S.B. No. 948 and recommend that it pass Second Reading and be referred to your Committee on Ways and Means.

 

Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committees on Agriculture and Environment and Water and Land,

 

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LORRAINE R. INOUYE, Chair

 

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MIKE GABBARD, Chair