PEOPLE FIRST Representative Marilyn Leeâ€™s 2010 Session Report District 38, Mililani/Mililani Mauka/ Waipio Acres
Artificial Turf for Mililani Stadium Fully Funded
Capitol Improvement Projects (CIP) are construction projects, either new projects or renovation, repair or major maintenance to existing facilities, and are funded through bond sales, rather than from general funds. CIPs approved in the 2010 budget for District 38 include: Dear Friends,
It has been an honor serving you during the past legislative session. As Vice Chair of the Finance Committee, I spent many hours working on the budget, listening to testimony and analyzing bills. The decisions did not come easy; however, we always kept in mind how we wanted Hawaii to look after the work was done. At the beginning of the 2010 session, the state faced a $1.2 billion dollar shortfall, and the primary focus of the Legislature became the budget. We made every effort to avoid raising the general excise tax, which affects every person and business in the state, and did not take the Transient Accommodations Tax (TAT) from the counties because we feared this might lead to a property tax increase.
Only five percent (5%) of the solutions used to balance the budget came from targeted tax and fee increases. Although times are tough, Hawaii has been able to cope with the recession better than many mainland states.
In summary, the actions we took were responsible, and reflect our priorities to support education, protect the health and safety of our citizens, and preserve the safety net. The latest predictions of the Council on Revenues (May 27, 2010), indicate that the fiscal situation of the state may be improving. It will be important for everyone in the state to work together to make those predictions a reality.
Thank you again for the opportunity to serve. The following pages will give you an overview of our work this session. Aloha,
MILILANI HIGH SCHOOL
Plans, design and construction for installation of synthetic turf, repair and improvements to the Mililani High School Sports Stadium. The current condition of the field is a health and safety hazard for field users which includes students from many Oahu schools. Total appropriation: $2.5 million ($2,500,000) Design and construction to resurface school parking lot and driveways Total appropriation: $312 thousand ($312,000) MILILANI MIDDLE SCHOOL Design and construction of covered play courts. The amount of rainfall experienced in Mililani Mauka justifies this project. Total appropriation: $2.5 million ($2,500,000 ) MILILANI WAENA ELEMENTARY SCHOOL Design and construction for solar fans to ventilate Pod classroom Total appropriation: $150 thousand ($150,000) Design and construction for parking lot expansion Total appropriation: $100 thousand ($100,000) KIPAPA ELEMENTARY SCHOOL Planning, design and construction for a parking lot with student drop off area Total appropriation: $500 thousand ($500,000) TRANSPORTATION Planning and design for elevated pedestrian walkway Makai to Mauka over H-2 Freeway at Mililani interchange Total appropriation: $2 thousand ($2,000) Planning and design for a second lane entering the H-2 Freeway for vehicles traveling from Mililani Mauka Total appropriation: $2 thousand ($2,000)
Thank you for taking the time to read my newsletter. You may contact me at the following addresses. I welcome your questions and input on issues of concern to our community. Mail: 415 S. Beretania, Room 434 Phone: 586-9460 Fax: 586-9466 e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Snapshots of the 2010 Legislative S Because the session was focused upon fiscal matters, fewer bills than usual were introduced by the members of the House and Senate. Some bills were carried over from the 2009 session because legislative years are measured in two year cycles called bienniums. Bills not mentioned on the following pages may be found by searching the Legislative web page at www.capitol. hawaii.gov. HB 2200 - $10 Billion Dollar Supplemental Budget Highlights The budget was balanced with the following provisions: • Reduced spending to address the critical revenue shortfall. • Increased funds for the weighted student formula used to distribute funds based on student need. • Elimination of public library furlough days, increasing library service hours and preventing branch closures. • Provision of resources for the Department of Human Services to deliver timely social service. • Resources to address the state’s Medicaid shortfall. • Resources to ensure the availability of emergency Health Service and Community Health Centers. • Support for agricultural programs for Hawaii’s agribusiness development, agricultural productivity, and frontline defense against invasive species.
• Continued investments in necessary infrastructure and other critical capital improvement projects to provide new construction, reduce repair and maintenance backlogs, and create jobs. Several bills provided the increased revenue needed to balance the budget. However, new Council on Revenues projections provide $302 million in fiscal year 2011. Therefore, the immediate need to override revenue bills vetoed by the Governor is unnecessary. Bills on the veto list total $140 million projected revenue for FY2011. HB 2421 Food and Energy Security Landmark legislation was created which sets the stage for Hawaii’s future food and energy security. Hawaii spends $8.6 billion dollars out of state yearly for imported food and fuel. This bill will help decrease the state’s total dependence on imported food and fuel, keep more dollars in the state and strengthen the local economy. Energy and food security programs such as renewable energy tax credits and additional agricultural inspectors will be funded by a one dollar per barrel addition to the tax on imported oil. In the 2010 budget, a portion of the revenue will also go to the general fund. With the recent crisis in the Gulf of Mexico, it becomes more important than ever that we develop renewable resources.
Representatives Yamane, Lee and Senator Kidani participate in the Mililani Complex Wellness Fair sponsored by Mililani Drug-Free.
EDUCATION: A Top Issue For The House of Representatives Ending Furloughs If we did anything this session, we needed to fund the elimination of furlough days. SB2124 provides $67 million dollars out of the Hawaii Hurricane Relief Fund to end furlough days in our public schools in the coming school year. The Governor has announced an agreement with the DOE, HSTA and the Board of Education which means furlough days for students will be a thing of the past next school year. Student Instructional Hours HB2486 (Act 167) is a measure which ensures that students have a sufficient amount of classroom time, especially in light of the time lost to furloughs. This requires implementation of a 185 day school year for the 2011-2013 school years, and phases in greater instructional hours for future years. This is a big increase over the present 163 days. Proposed Constitutional Amendment HB2376 proposes amending the Hawaii State Constitution to change the Board of Education from an elected Board to a body appointed by the governor. The issue will be voted upon by the public in the November election, and is one means of providing for more accountability. At the same time, the Superintendent of Education would become part of the Governor’s cabinet.
Students at Mililani Middle School share their talent at Blazer Award Night.
Each year the Women’s Legislative Caucus, a bi-partisan group that includes all women in the Legislature, sponsors an Easter basket project to benefit clients of the Institute for Human Services. The baskets include toiletries and personal items.
PROMOTING AND SUPPORTING BUSINESS Employment Security; Unemployment Insurance Rates Responding to these difficult times, we passed HB 2169 (Act 002) which was signed early by the governor to assist both employers and employees. The measure reduces the otherwise expected large hike in the unemployment tust fund contributions for business and: 1. Adjusts the unemployment (UI) contribution rates for employers and the benefit amounts paid to employees from the UI compensation fund while maintaining adequate reserves in the fund. 2. Authorizes special assessments to be made upon employers in a fair and equitable way to pay the interest costs on loans received from the US Secretary of Labor to pay expected UI benefit claims.
American Cancer Society volunteers visited the office and were presented with a certificate recognizing the ACS as the “official sponsor of birthdays.”
LENDING A HAND TO THOSE IN NEED SB 2469 appropriates close to $23 million dollars to help those in need in our community. I have worked for several years on the issues of Long Term Care, domestic violence and child and family well-being, and was very happy we were able to use some of the EMERGENCY AND BUDGET RESERVE FUND to support the following: • The Healthy Start Program • The Kupuna Care Program and several senior centers • Statewide domestic violence shelters
• Childcare subsidies Kupuna Care services form a critically important safety net that helps our senior citizens and frail elderly remain at home. It also saves taxpayer money in the long run by keeping our vulnerable elderly from impoverishing themselves, being forced into the Medicaid program and into more costly institutional settings. HR155 requested the President of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives to authorize the Joint Legislative Committee on Aging in Place to continue to meet and carry out the work of the committee. I cochair the committee. In our aging society, it is vital that we continue to address the concerns and needs of our elderly population.
Broadband and Telework Development • HB2698 This bill requires the Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs to promote telework and affordable , accessible broadband service in Hawaii. It also creates a work- Pinwheels were placed on the lawn of the State Capitol as a ing group to study this issue. reminder to prevent child abuse.
SB2163 (Act 057) defines the practice of nursing and delineates the scope of practice for registered nurses, licensed practical nurses, and advanced practice registered nurses. This bill will help to implement a bill passed last session, which allows prescriptive authority for advanced practice registered nurses, by clarifying the rules under which APRNs can prescribe medication.
Representative Marilyn Lee State Capitol , Room 434 Honolulu, HI 96813
FIREWORKS LEGISLATION Fireworks topped the list of constituent concerns this session. I have served on the Public Safety Committee for several years, and committee members seemed much more concerned about the problem this year than in the past. I introduced a total ban, as did several others. We did not pass a total ban, but passed two bills that may make a difference in the future: • HB1987 addresses the illegal importation, sale and transfer of fireworks by establishing nuisance abatement and forfeiture actions to discourage such activities. • SB1059 (Act 170) establishes an illegal fireworks task force with the goal of stopping the importation of illegal fireworks and explosives, and authorizes the counties to enact ordinances that are more stringent than existing state laws. A bill before the Honolulu City Council to ban fireworks passed first reading. EVER PRESENT GRAFFITI HB 2129 requires those who damage property with graffiti to take responsibility by requiring them to remove the graffiti within 30 days of sentencing and requires that they perform community service to remove graffiti applied by others within one hundred yards of the original graffiti.
Presorted Standard U.S. Postage Paid Honolulu, Hawaii Permit No. 9882
House Congratulatory Certificate Presentations
Mililani High School members of the Hawaii Health Occupations Students of America were presented with awards of recognition for their outstanding leadership.
Mililani High School teacher Lisa-Anne Tsuruda was recognized as a 2009 Milken Educator Award winner.
The Native Hawaiian Caucus Day was celebrated on March 9. Hawaii’s Surfing Legends were honored on the floor of the House of Representatives, including Buffalo Keaulana.
MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving) was recognized on their 25th Anniversary.