The Hawaii State Legislature’s Environmental Legislative Caucus this week presented a package of policy proposals to address the state’s pressing environmental issues.
The caucus is a coalition of legislators that works collaboratively with non-governmental organizations and government agencies on issues including climate change, energy and conservation.
In addition to defending the bills that were selected for this year’s package, the caucus will work together to support additional measures as the legislative session progresses.
This year’s package includes invoices for:
- Set green fees
- Create a cesspool conversion tax credit and require buyers of properties with cesspools to be informed of state laws regarding cesspool conversion.
- Implement a soil health initiative to support regenerative agriculture
- Fund an assessment of social vulnerability to climate change to address equity concerns
- Adding a Green Amendment to the constitution to give Hawaiians the right to a healthy environment
This packet is a collaborative effort of caucus members and complements the bill packets of other caucuses and committee chairs.
one. green fees (HB442 / SB636)
Establishes a visitor impact fee to collect flat fees from non-residents to fund the protection and management of Hawaii’s natural resources.
2. Assessment of Social Vulnerability to Climate Change (HB441 / SB657)
Funds a social vulnerability assessment to climate change to better understand vulnerable populations and ensure equity considerations are integrated into policy.
3. Cesspool Disclosure and Tax Credit (HB440 / SB947)
Hawaii has more than 80,000 cesspools that release more than 50 million gallons of raw sewage into the state’s groundwater and surface water every day. This measure would reinstate the cesspool conversion tax credit and require that home transactions disclose whether the property has a cesspool to be converted and the date the cesspool is required to be converted so buyers are informed of the conversion. existence of a cesspool and state laws relating to it. Hawaii’s cesspools damage reefs and pollute oceans and freshwater resources.
Four. Healthy Soils (HB443 / SB660)
Establish a healthy soils program to promote agricultural practices that improve soil health, sequester more carbon, increase water infiltration, and improve water and pollinator habitats while earning better profits and often better yields.
5. green amendment (HB444 / SB635)
Proposes a constitutional reform that ensures and protects the fundamental right of people, including future generations, to clean air and water, a healthy environment and climate, healthy native ecosystems, and beaches.
For more information on membership of the Environmental Legislative Caucus, contact:
To follow these bills through the 2023 Legislative Session, see here.