Numerous Bills Introduced by Sen. Ruderman
A number of Puna and Big Island unique bills were introduced by Senator Russell Ruderman this legislative session.
Some of the proposed bills have already been scheduled for hearing.
“These bills need your support,” Senator Russell Ruderman said. “Big Island endured serious damage from a tropical storm last year and faces uncertainty due to the impending lava flow. Many of the bills I have introduced could help our district to be better prepared for disasters in the future. I am also committed to focusing on food and agricultural sustainability this session.”
Listed below are the bills that Senator Ruderman has introduced that relate to Puna and/or Big Island issues:
Conservation; Department of Land and Natural Resources; Sandalwood; Penalties; Fees
RELATING TO SANDALWOOD.
Prohibits the sale, export, and possession with intent to sell or export raw or unprocessed sandalwood timber, including whole or partial raw logs. Establishes penalties for the sale, export, or possession with the intent to sell or export raw or unprocessed sandalwood timber and establishes a violation as a misdemeanor.
Aquatic Life; Aquarium Permits; Fish; Sale of Aquatic Life for Aquarium Use Prohibited
RELATING TO WILDLIFE.
Criminalizes the sale of aquatic life for aquarium use and establishes the penalties for first and subsequent violations. Amends existing aquarium fish permit law to conform to the ban. Takes effect on 1/1/2016.
Mobile Health Unit; Appropriation
RELATING TO HEALTH.
Appropriates a grant to the Bay Clinic, Inc., for a mobile health unit to service the Puna district due to the threat of inaccessibility from the lava flow.
Elections; Voting; Elections by Mail; Absentee Voting; Appropriation
RELATING TO ELECTIONS.
Enable the office of elections to implement elections by mail in any interested county, beginning with the 2016 primary election. By 2018, requires all federal, state, and county primary, special primary, general, special general, and special elections to be conducted by mail. Enables absentee walk-in voting to continue prior to election day. Ensures limited polling sites in each county remain open on election day for absentee walk-in voting and to receive mail-in ballots. Appropriates funds for the implementation and administration of the election by mail program.
Puna Community Medical Center; Mobile Health Unit; Annex Medical Clinic; Emergency Appropriation ($)
MAKING AN EMERGENCY APPROPRIATION FOR THE PUNA COMMUNITY MEDICAL CENTER.
Appropriates funds as an emergency appropriation to the Puna Community Medical Center for a mobile health unit to service the Puna district due to the threat of inaccessibility from the lava flow.
Rat Lungworm Disease; Appropriation ($)
RELATING TO THE UNIVERSITY OF HAWAI’I.
Appropriates funds to the University of Hawai’i at Hilo for programs and studies related to rat lung worm disease.
Property Insurance; Hawai’i Property Insurance Association; Renewal
RELATING TO INSURANCE.
Requires the renewal of property insurance, but permits insurers to deny renewal for nonpayment of an undisputed premium by a policyholder.
Invasive Species; Albizia Trees; Appropriation ($)
RELATING TO THE ENVIRONMENT.
Makes an appropriation to the Hawai’i invasive species council for the coordinated management of albizia trees on Hawai’i Island and throughout the State.
Coffee; Labeling; Geographic or Regional Origins; Percentage of Content Requirement; Hawai’i-grown Coffee
RELATING TO COFFEE.
Requires a specific listing of the geographic origins of various Hawai’i-grown coffees and the geographic or regional origins of the various coffees not grown in Hawai’i that are included in a coffee blend to be listed on the front panel of a label. Increases the minimum percentage requirement for coffee blends to use geographic origin in labeling or advertising to 80 per cent coffee by weight from that geographic origin. Effective January 1, 2016.
Emergencies and Disasters; Postponed Elections; Distribution of Voting Results
RELATING TO ELECTIONS.
Requires the chief election officer or county clerk to exercise existing powers to postpone an election in affected precincts when the right to vote is substantially impaired due to an emergency or natural disaster. Prohibits the distribution of results from any precinct, whether or not designated for postponement, until after the final closing of the polls for an election postponed due to an emergency or disaster.
Hooulu Lahui; Appropriation; Grant ($)
MAKING AN APPROPRIATION FOR A COMMUNITY CERTIFIED KITCHEN IN PUNA.
Appropriates funds to Hooulu Lahui to complete construction of a community certified kitchen in lower Puna.
Emergency Medical Services; Advanced Life Support Ambulance; Puna; Appropriation ($)
RELATING TO HEALTH.
Appropriates funds to establish an advanced life support ambulance to be based in Puna on the island of Hawai’i, including the acquisition of a vehicle and equipment and personnel costs for state-certified emergency medical services personnel.
Puna Small Boat Harbor; General Obligation Bonds; Appropriation ($)
RELATING TO A SMALL BOAT HARBOR IN SOUTH PUNA.
Authorizes the director of finance to issue general obligation bonds to finance the design and construction of a small boat harbor in South Puna.
Airport; Appropriation ($)
MAKING AN APPROPRIATION FOR THE CONSTRUCTION OF AN AIRPORT IN PUNA.
Appropriates funds for construction of a small airport in South Puna due to the threat of inaccessibility from lava flow.
Individuals interested in submitting testimony online or for outer island residents who want to testify by video, contact the Public Access Room.
A complete and detailed list of bills Introduced by Senator Ruderman can be found here.
Additional bills introduced this session can be found here.