NEWS RELEASE: Governor Releases Intent to Veto List

Posted on Jun 29, 2015 in Latest News, Newsroom, Press Releases

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

June 29, 2015

HONOLULU – Governor David Ige has informed the Hawai‘i State Legislature of his intent to veto the following bills:

  • HB540 Relating to the UH Accounting and Financial Management System:
    Extends authority of UH to maintain separate accounting and financial management system
  • HB553  Relating to Collective Bargaining:
    Allows UH graduate student assistants employed by UH to collectively bargain their wages, hours and other terms
  • SB105  Relating to the Budget:
    Requires estimated future debt service for proposed CIP projects to be included in the budget documents submitted to the legislature.
  • SB218  Relating to the Order of Succession:
    Clarifies the order of succession to the Lt. Governor’s office
  • SB265 Relating to Sex Trafficking:
    Changes wording in statute from “promoting prostitution in the first degree” to “sex trafficking”
  • SB349 Relating to Taxation:
    Repeals ethanol facility tax credit; establishes a 5-year renewable fuels production tax credit
  • SB569 Relating to Theft:
    Increases the dollar threshold with respect to property or services, for theft in the second degree from the current $300 to $750
  • SB1324 Relating to Divorce:
    Provides authority for Employees’ Retirement System to make direct payments of benefits to a non-member former spouse of a member on order of court judgment, order or divorce decree.

This Intent to Veto list gives the governor the option to veto any, but not necessary all, of the bills on the list by July 14, 2015.

Bills that are not on this list will become law with or without the governor’s signature no later than July 14.

 

The following is the Governor’s initial thoughts on the rationale behind the placement of bills on the veto list:

HB540 HD1 SD2 CD1         RELATING TO THE UNIVERSITY OF HAWAII ACCOUNTING AND FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT SYSTEM

The University of Hawai‘i believes, and I agree, that this measure contains provisions that violate the Hawai‘i state constitution regarding autonomy for University System management over university finances.

HB553 HD1 SD2 CD1         RELATING TO COLLECTIVE BARGAINING

Our administration appreciates the contributions graduate students make throughout the university system. Their valid concerns can and should be addressed internally through Board of Regents policy followed by a commitment from the University administration to implement such policy.   We strongly encourage this option rather than amending state collective bargaining laws that govern management and employee relations.

SB105 SD1 HD1 CD1          RELATING TO THE BUDGET

Our administration believes that this measure, while well-intended, would be difficult to implement given the uncertainty of capital finance markets. Thus, it would be difficult to calculate long-term debt and might lead to inaccurate projections that could ultimately affect our bond rating. We would prefer to voluntarily work toward more accurate projections driven by administrative policy rather than state law.

SB218 SD1 HD1       RELATING TO ORDER OF SUCCESSION

We believe that the existing order of succession is adequate and appropriate. We further believe that these changes might leave a gap in succession that would be difficult to address in a state of emergency or disaster.

SB265 SD1 HD1 CD1          RELATING TO SEX TRAFFICKING

I understand the concerns raised about exploitation of women that have driven advocates to seek strong penalties for sex trafficking.   Unfortunately, this measure creates a special crime that eliminates the opportunity for prosecution of lesser related offenses. Thus, our Attorney General and 3 of our 4 county prosecutors are advising that this bill may result in fewer prosecutions for these types of crimes. I am asking our Attorney General and county prosecutors to propose a bill that will allow them to prosecute the full range of prostitution and sex trafficking offenses.

SB349 SD2 HD2 CD1          RELATING TO TAXATION

We have been advised by our Attorney General that the definition of qualified taxpayers is flawed in that it does not allow for companies outside of Hawai‘i to be qualified. This potentially violates the Commerce Clause of the U.S. Constitution, and could subject our state to potential litigation.

SB569 SD1 HD1 CD1       RELATING TO THEFT

We have been advised by county prosecutors that increasing the threashold for felony theft from $300 to $750 will eliminate the deterrent effect within retail markets. The retail merchants, in particular, are concerned that this will increase their revenue loss from shoplifting.

SB1324 SD2 HD1 CD1     RELATING TO DIVORCE

Our administration supports the intent of this measure. However, we believe that working with the Employee Retirement System (ERS) Board and administration, we can accomplish this without state law.

 

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Media Contacts:

Jodi Leong
Deputy Communications Director/Press Secretary
Office: 808-586-0043
Mobile: 808-798-3929
jodi.c.leong@hawaii.gov

Cindy McMillan
Communications Director
Office: 808-586-0012
Mobile: 808-265-7974
cindy.mcmillan@hawaii.gov