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Council Committee Postpones pCard Bill

August 20, 2015, 11:21 AM HST
* Updated August 20, 11:51 AM
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A bill relating to government officials’ use of public funds was postponed Tuesday during the Hawai’i County Council Finance Committee meeting.

Bill 78, introduced by Puna Councilman Greggor Ilagan, would amend a portion of the Hawai’i County Code relating to the mayor’s or council chairmans’ ability to make exceptions to certain purchases using public funds for travel and expenses.

The legislation attempts to clarify that the use of public funds could only be authorized if the purchase holds a public purpose.

Ilagan said Thursday the bill was postponed for clarification purposes.

“The council members felt maybe given some time they could draft new amendments for it,” he said of the bill. “It was a first step. It’s not the last step and I would encourage new amendments if it makes the bill even better.”

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The legislation was drafted after a recent report from Legislative Auditor Bonnie Nims found the Hawai’i County Mayor’s Office and another department may have misused the county purchasing cards, or pCards.

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Nims went in front of the County Finance Committee in August and said that the current policy did not clarify when there can be exceptions made regarding the use of public funds.

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