Friday, January 29, 2010

Hearing Notice for SB2818

THE SENATE
THE TWENTY-FIFTH LEGISLATURE
REGULAR SESSION OF 2010

COMMITTEE ON ENERGY AND ENVIRONMENT
Senator Mike Gabbard, Chair
Senator J. Kalani English, Vice Chair

COMMITTEE ON WATER, LAND, AGRICULTURE, AND HAWAIIAN AFFAIRS
Senator Clayton Hee, Chair
Senator Jill N. Tokuda, Vice Chair

AMENDED NOTICE OF HEARING

DATE: Tuesday, February 2, 2010
TIME: 2:45 p.m.
PLACE: Conference Room 225, State Capitol, 415 South Beretania Street

AMENDED AGENDA

SB 2441

Testimony

Status

RELATING TO ENDANGERED SPECIES.

Establishes the intentional or knowing taking of an endangered species as a class C felony; provides a private right of action to enforce conservation of aquatic life, wildlife, and land plants laws.

ENE/WTL, JGO

SB 2818

Testimony

Status

RELATING TO ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION.

Transfers the office of environmental quality control and the environmental council from the department of health to the department of land and natural resources; reduces the membership of the environmental council from 15 to 7; establishes the environmental review special fund; revises the environmental assessment and environmental impact statement process to create a more streamlined, transparent, and consistent process.

ENE/WTL, WAM [Measure added on 01-29-10]




Decision Making to follow, if time permits.

FOR AMENDED HEARING NOTICES: If the notice is an amended notice, measures that have been deleted are stricken through and measures that have been added are underscored. If there is a measure that is both underscored and stricken through, that measure has been deleted from the agenda.

Persons wishing to testify should submit testimony in one of the following ways by 4:00 p.m. the day prior to the hearing:

· By Email: Testimony may be emailed if less than 5 pages in length, to the Committee at ENETestimony@Capitol.hawaii.gov . Please indicate the measure, date and time of the hearing. Email sent to individual offices or any other Senate office will not be accepted.

· By Web: Testimony may be submitted online if less than 4MB in size, at http://www.capitol.hawaii.gov/emailtestimony.

· In person: 1 copy of their testimony to the committee clerk, Room 201, State Capitol.

· By fax: Testimony may be faxed if less than 5 pages in length, to the Senate Sergeant-At-Arms Office at 586-6659 or 1-800-586-6659 (toll free for neighbor islands), at least 24 hours prior to the hearing. When faxing, please indicate to which committee the testimony is being submitted and the date and time of the hearing.

Please note: If you submit your written testimony after 4:00 p.m. the day prior to the hearing, please sign-in at the staff table to testify orally. A copy of your testimony may not be available during the hearing but will be posted online for the public after the hearing.

If you require special assistance or auxiliary aids or services to participate in the public hearing process (i.e., sign or foreign language interpreter or wheelchair accessibility), please contact the committee clerk 24 hours prior to the hearing so arrangements can be made.

Please note: All testimony received by the Hawaii Senate will be posted on the Hawaii Legislature's Website. Documents made available through the Testimony hyperlink(s) above may not be posted until the start of the hearing.

Public Folder. A folder labeled “Public Folder” containing the testimonies for the hearing will be available for shared use by members of the public.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION, PLEASE CALL THE COMMITTEE CLERK AT 586-6830.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Twitter Updates of Environmental Protection Bills

A twitter page has been set up with automatic updates of any bill relating to environmental protection that has been introduced to the 2010 Hawaii State Legislature. Each update contains a link back to the bill profile page on the Hawaii State Legislature website. An RSS feed of all the updates for the twitter page is also available.

Alternative Proposal: Senate Bill 2830: Relating to Environmental Protection

An alternative proposal to the Study's omnibus bill has been introduced into the Senate. SB2830 proposes to
  • Remove the University of Hawaii Environmental Center from the environmental quality control process;

  • Transfer the Office of Environmental Quality Control (OEQC) from the Department of Health to the Office of the Governor; and

  • Revise the environmental review process to create an approach that is based primarily on land use decisions rather than individual projects.
Introducer: SAKAMOTO

To monitor the progress of the bill, visit here.

Senate Bill 2818: Relating to Environmental Protection

The Study's omnibus bill has been introduced to the Senate as SB2818. To monitor the progression of this bill, visit here.

For those new to the legislative process, the Hawaii State Legislature website has great background resources, including a Citizen's Guide to Participation in the Legislative Process, which can be downloaded here.

Introducers: GABBARD, KIDANI, KOKUBUN, Espero, Hee, Nishihara, Sakamoto, Takamine

An RSS feed for SB2818 is provided in the left sidebar below the quick links. Check back often to learn the status of the bill as it moves through the legislature.

House Bill 2398: Relating to Environmental Protection

Another version of the Study's omnibus bill has been introduced to the House as HB2398. To monitor the progression of the bill, visit here.

For those new to the legislative process, the Hawaii State Legislature website has great background resources, including a Citizen's Guide to Participation in the Legislative Process, which can be downloaded here.

Introducer: SAY (BR)

An RSS feed for HB2398 is provided in the left sidebar below the quick links. Check back often to learn the status of the bill as it moves through the legislature.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Alternative Approach to Chapter 341 - Expand the Role of OEQC

The Study considered a range of alternatives that were ultimately not preferred. This background document presents one alternative approach to governance.

The purpose of providing this alternative approach as part of the study’s background documents on the study website is to facilitate transparency about the study’s deliberative process and to facilitate further discussion of these important issues.

Instead of elevating the role of the Environmental Council, as proposed in the study’s omnibus bill (attached as Appendix 3 to the Jan. 1, 2010 Report), this alternative approach would amend Chapter 341 to significantly expand the role and authority of OEQC, transform the Environmental Council into a smaller advisory body to advise to OEQC and retain only their “liaison to the public” function, and shift to OEQC the Council’s current duties of rulemaking, exemption lists, and the annual report.

Some of the study team’s recommendations are common to both the omnibus bill and to this alternative approach. In this “full text” version of Chapter 341, the common recommendations are noted in italics. Amendments are underlined; deletions are in strikethrough and brackets. The footnotes provide brief explanations as well as links to the (common) numbered recommendations in the report.

To avoid confusion with the proposed omnibus bill, a bill format is not provided for this alternative approach to governance although the Legislative Reference Bureau did generously assist the study team with preliminary drafting of this alternative in bill format. Furthermore, this document is current with the report submitted to the legislature and will not be updated to reflect any changes to the proposed omnibus bill as it moves through the legislative process.

Alternative Approach to Chapter 343 - Modify the Existing System

The Study considered a range of alternatives to applicability that were ultimately not preferred. This background document presents one alternative approach.

The purpose of providing this alternative approach as part of the study’s background documents on the study website is to facilitate transparency about the study’s deliberative process and further discussion of these important issues.

Instead of a new “discretionary approval” and “probable, significant, and adverse environmental effects” screen proposed in the omnibus bill, this alternative approach would have made various modifications to the existing trigger system. The primary difference is seen in various amendments to HRS § 343-5(a) below.

Many of the study team’s recommendations are common to both the omnibus bill and to this alternative approach. In this “full text” version of Chapter 343, the common recommendations are noted in italics. Amendments are underlined; deletions are in strikethrough and brackets. The footnotes provide brief explanations as well as links to the (common) numbered recommendations in the report.

To avoid confusion with the proposed omnibus bill, a bill format is not provided for this alternative approach to applicability although the Legislative Reference Bureau did generously assist the study team with preliminary drafting of this alternative in bill format. Furthermore, this document is current with the report submitted to the legislature and will not be updated to reflect any changes to the proposed omnibus bill as it moves through the legislative process.

Statutory Recommendations to the Legislature: Appendix 4

The Report to the Legislature's Appendix 4 is a full-text version of Chapters 341 and 343 that include footnotes and how the statute would look if the omnibus bill were passed.

Statutory Recommendations to the Legislature: Appendix 3

The Report to the Legislature's Appendix 3 is the omnibus bill that serves as the basis for the recently introduced SB2185 and HB2322.

Statutory Recommendations to the Legislature: Appendix 2

In the Report to the Legislature, Appendix 2 provides a list of participants in the review process.

Friday, January 22, 2010

House Bill 2322: Relating to Environmental Protection

The Study's omnibus bill has been introduced to the House as HB2322. To monitor the progression of the bill, visit here.

For those new to the legislative process, the Hawaii State Legislature website has great background resources, including a Citizen's Guide to Participation in the Legislative Process, which can be downloaded here.

Introducers: MORITA, BELATTI, COFFMAN, HANOHANO, ITO, C. LEE, LUKE, B. OSHIRO, THIELEN, Cabanilla, Carroll, Chong, Evans, Keith-Agaran, M. Lee, McKelvey, Rhoads, Sagum, Say, Souki, Wakai, Yamashita

An RSS feed for HB2322 is provided in the left sidebar below the quick links. Check back often to learn the status of the bill as it moves through the legislature.

Update: Due to many alternatives of the omnibus bill and other bills relating to environmental protection, introducers of each bill will also be included.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Senate Bill 2185: Relating to Environmental Protection

The Study's omnibus bill has been introduced to the Senate as SB2185. To monitor the progression of this bill, visit here. It is currently referred to a joint meeting of the Energy and Environemnt (ENE) & Judiciary and Government Operations (JGO) Committees, and to the Ways and Means (WAM) Committee. No date has been set yet.

For those new to the legislative process, the Hawaii State Legislature website has great background resources, including a Citizen's Guide to Participation in the Legislative Process, which can be downloaded here.

Update: An RSS feed for SB2185 is provided in the left sidebar below the quick links. Check back often to learn the status of the bill as it moves through the legislature.

Update II: Introducer: HANABUSA (BR)

Monday, January 18, 2010

Statutory Recommendations to the Legislature: Appendix 1

Act 1 2008 is the authorizing legislation for the Study. The goods are in Section 10.

Basics of Environmental Impact Assessment

The United Nations University, RMIT University, and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) jointly developed an online course module that provides a critical overview of the theory and practice of environmental impact assessment (EIA), particulary from an international perspective. This is an excellent resource for those new to EIA or wish to review certain aspects of it.

The Module covers the:

  • purpose and aims of EIA;
  • EIA administration and practice;
  • concept of associated assessment processes;
  • key elements of the EIA process;
  • undertaking an EIA;
  • role of public participation;
  • stages that follow EIA;
  • the costs and benefits of undertaking EIA; and
  • understanding of the strengths and limitations of EIA.
Also on the site is an extensive list of definitions for common terms used in EIA and an EIA wiki.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Presentation for the 1.15.10 Legislative Information Briefing

For the Legislative Information Briefing on Friday, Jan 14, 2010, a powerpoint presentation was presented and a 1-page summary of the report was prepared.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Legislative Information Briefing

Friday, Jan 15, 2010, at 1:00 pm is a joint-information briefing for the legislature on the statutory recommendations for Hawaii's environmental review system.

Material from the presentation will be posted by Monday, Jan 17, along with other supplementary materials.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Report to the Legislature on Hawaii's Environmental Review System

After incorporating the feedback to the draft recommendations, the Study has released a report to the Hawaii State Legislature recommending a comprehensive modernization of Chapters 341 and 343 HRS.

To view the report online, click here. To download a PDF version, click here.



Check back next week for appendices to the report.

In summer 2010, the UH EIS Study Team will release a final report of the Study, including recommendations for Chapter 344 HRS and HAR 200 & 201.

If you would like to share your thoughts on any of these or review other people's comments, please click on any of the links above to leave a comment or email Scott Glenn or Nicole Lowen.

We encourage dialogue between contributors. For the comments, including your name or remaining anonymous are both options, but please be respectful of others' ideas. Any comments deemed offensive or irrelevant may be deleted. When leaving a comment, please choose "Anonymous" from the drop down box. The other options (LiveJournal, WordPress, TypePad, AIM, OpenID, and Name/URL) are available for those with those respective accounts and wish to have their comments linked to them. If you'd like to include your name, please type it into the message, but this is by no means necessary.

Update: Appendix 1, Appendix 2, Appendix 3, and Appendix 4 to the report have been posted in separate posts for direct access.