STAND. COM. REP. NO. 1623
RE: S.C.R. No. 102
Honorable Ronald D. Kouchi
President of the Senate
Thirty-Second State Legislature
Regular Session of 2023
State of Hawaii
Your Committee on Judiciary, to which was referred S.C.R. No. 102 entitled:
"SENATE CONCURRENT RESOLUTION ENCOURAGING THE FACILITATION OF A PATH TO CITIZENSHIP FOR IMMIGRANTS FROM PARTIES TO THE COMPACTS OF FREE ASSOCIATION,"
begs leave to report as follows:
The purpose and intent of this measure is to encourage the facilitation of a path to citizenship for immigrants from parties to the Compact of Free Association.
Your Committee received testimony in support of this measure from the Department of Labor and Industrial Relations's Office of Community Services and Hawai‘i Civil Rights Commission.
Your Committee finds that the Compacts of Free Association (COFA) are a series of treaties between the United States, the Federated States of Micronesia, the Republic of Palau, and the Republic of the Marshall Islands. These treaties were partially established as compensation for the loss of life, health, land, and resources due to the numerous nuclear weapons tests on the Marshall Islands and Bikini and Enewetak Atolls conducted by the United States from 1946 to 1958. Your Committee further finds that COFA allows citizens of Micronesia to live and legally work in the United States without visas, as well as have access to social and health services. However, under United States immigration law there is no path to United States citizenship for citizens of COFA nations. This measure will help create a path to citizenship for citizens of COFA nations.
Your Committee has amended this measure by clarifying the legislative findings.
As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Judiciary that is attached to this report, your Committee concurs with the intent and purpose of S.C.R. No. 102, as amended herein, and recommends its adoption in the form attached hereto as S.C.R. No. 102, S.D. 1.
Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Judiciary,
KARL RHOADS, Chair