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UPDATE: Senate Unanimous in Repeal of PLDC

Posted February 15, 2013, 06:34 PM HST Updated February 20, 2013, 11:37 AM HST
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Sens. David Ige, left, and Michelle Kidani are the chair and vice-chair, respectively, of the Senate Committee on Ways and Means. The committee recently unanimously approved the Senate’s version of a bill that would repeal the PLDC. Courtesy photos.

***Update posted at 7:44 p.m. on Feb. 19.***

The state Senate today approved a bill that would repeal the 2011 state law that established the Public Land Development Corp.

All 25 members of the Senate voted to approve Senate Bill 707 and move it over to the House.

The House has already approved its own version of a bill dissolving the controversial agency and sent that over to the Senate.

That measure, House Bill 1133, passed the first of three required readings in the Senate on Friday.

Posted on Feb. 15:

A day after the state House passed a bill that would dissolve the controversial Public Land Development Corp., the state Senate is poised to approve a similar bill of its own.

When it was originally introduced on Jan. 18, Senate Bill 707 dealt with establishing a “smart growth” policy for infrastructure.

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However, the contents of the bill were deleted at a joint committee meeting Monday and language inserted that would repeal Act 55, the 2011 law that created the PLDC. The tactic is what is known as “gut and replace.”

The Senate Committee on Ways and Means today held a hearing on SB 707 and voted unanimously to approve it.

It first amended the bill to have the PLDC’s executive director and planner transferred to the Department of Land and Natural Resources.

The bill is expected to come up for a final Senate vote next week. If approved, it will move over to the House.

Meanwhile the House on Thursday sent over to the Senate its version of a PLDC-killing measure, House Bill 1133.

Before it had a chance to operate, the Public Land Development Corp. was condemned by many Hawaii residents, organizations and politicians, most of them critical of the agency’s authority to bypass some state land-use laws and also county zoning and subdivision requirements.

The criticism began when the agency took its proposed administrative rules out to public hearings, which became a focal point for protests targeting the PLDC.

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