Posted on May 3, 2019 in Featured, What's New

The 2019 legislative session has ended, and here is an update of the open government bills that have passed.  To see the actual proposals, testimony, and legislative status, please go to the Legislature’s website at capitol.hawaii.gov.

H.B. 2, H.D. 1, S.D. 1, C.D. 1 –  Relating to the State Budget.  OIP appreciates the $70,000 added to its operating budget for the upcoming fiscal biennium, which brings its total budget to $769,837 each year.  The bill was adopted by the Legislature and was signed into law by Governor Ige as Act 5 on April 12, 2019.

S.B. 335, S.D. 2, H.D. 1, C.D. 1Relating to Public Meetings.  This bill amended the Sunshine Law to require the meeting notice to include instructions for requesting an accommodation of disabled individuals, and to also require boards to retain proof of filing with the Lieutenant Governor or County Clerk.  The final C.D. 1 deleted the requirement for electronically posted Sunshine Law meeting notices to be in an “accessible” format.  Consequently, OIP supported this final draft of bill.  The bill will go into effect upon approval, so meeting notices should already include the reasonable accommodation language suggested by the Disability Access Communication Board (DCAB) and be filed with the appropriate county clerk’s or Lt. Governor’s office, with proof of filing retained by the board.

S.B. 92, S.D. 1, H.D. 1 – Relating to Police Reports.  This bill amends chapter 54 to allow a surviving immediate family member to receive a copy of the final investigatory report upon conclusion of all legal proceedings involving murder in the first or second degree or manslaughter.

Bills that did not pass this year, but carry over to the next session:

H.B. 285, H.D. 1, S.D. 2Relating to Public Safety.  The bill requires county police departments to disclose to the Legislature the identity of an officer upon an officer’s suspension or discharge and amends the UIPA to allow for disclosure of employment misconduct information of county police officers after suspension (current law requires this only after termination).  The S.D. 2 also requires county police departments’ annual reports to disclose the identity of suspended or discharged officers.

H.B. 362, H.D. 1, S.D. 1 – Relating to Information Practices.  This bill would have amended the UIPA to require disclosure only of salary ranges, not exact salaries, for legislative staff, excluding attorneys or individuals who are paid more than $100,000.  This bill remains in the Senate Ways and Means Committee.

H.B. 532, H.D. 1, S.D. 1, C.D. 1, and S.B. 1001, S.D. 2, H.D. 1 – Relating to Government Data.  These bills amend Section 27-44 to establish within the Office of Enterprise Technology Services a full-time chief data officer and a data task force to develop the State’s data policies, procedures, and standards.

S.B. 748, S.D. 1 – Relating to Board Members.  This bill, which would have permitted one or more board members to attend ceremonial addresses for the State of the City, State of the County, State of the State, or State of the Judiciary, was passed by the Senate but was not heard by the House, where it was triple referred to the committees on Labor, Judiciary, and Finance.

The Legislature considered several resolutions and concurrent resolutions requesting that OIP experiment with experimental appeal resolution processes to see if any would decrease the appeals resolution time.  Only H.R. 104 was passed by the House, which asks OIP to conduct an alternative appeal resolution pilot project.  No other resolutions or concurrent resolutions passed.