STAND. COM. REP. NO. 1564
RE: S.C.R. No. 217
Honorable Ronald D. Kouchi
President of the Senate
Thirty-Second State Legislature
Regular Session of 2023
State of Hawaii
Your Committee on Health and Human Services, to which was referred S.C.R. No. 217 entitled:
"SENATE CONCURRENT RESOLUTION URGING THE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH TO TAKE CERTAIN ACTIONS REGARDING FUGITIVE DUST,"
begs leave to report as follows:
(1) Amend its administrative rules, pursuant to Chapter 91, Hawaii Revised Statutes, to:
(A) Create an updated list of reasonable precautions that a landowner may take to prevent visible fugitive dust from the land from becoming airborne, particularly when the land is vacant and undeveloped;
(B) Specify the best practical operations or treatments an owner of vacant undeveloped land may take or implement to prevent visible fugitive dust that originates from the land from being discharged beyond the land's lot line;
(C) Require each owner of vacant, undeveloped land in the State to submit to the Department a fugitive dust mitigation plan for the owner's vacant undeveloped land, which shall be subject to approval by the Director of Health; and
(D) Impose appropriate penalties for violations of rules relating to fugitive dust;
(2) Monitor fugitive dust across the State; and
(3) Report its progress and any recommendations to the Legislature before the Regular Session of 2024.
Your Committee did not receive testimony on this measure.
Your Committee finds that in windy conditions, large dust storms can originate from former agricultural lands in the State that have become vacant, depositing topsoil into the ocean and thereby damaging the reefs and the marine environment, as well as detrimentally affecting the health of nearby residents. Your Committee further finds that although the Department of Health's Clean Air Branch regulates the discharge of fugitive dust in the State and imposes penalties for violations, existing rules do not require land owners to have fugitive dust mitigation plans approved by the Director of Health and the existing penalty structure does not consider the scale of the dust emission. This measure requests the Department of Health to take various actions to prevent and address the detrimental effects of fugitive dust arising from vacant undeveloped land.
As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Health and Human Services that is attached to this report, your Committee concurs with the intent and purpose of S.C.R. No. 217 and recommends its adoption.
Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Health and Human Services,
JOY A. SAN BUENAVENTURA, Chair