Hawai‘i State Budget Bill Gets Early Approval
Priorities include new state hospital staff, airport improvements, debt service payments
The House and the Senate on Wednesday approved a final version of HB 2 HD1 SD 1 CD1, the state budget bill, which includes operating monies to run the state government. The bill puts a priority on appropriating funds to staff the new state hospital, make needed improvements at state airports, and pay down our debt service.
The House Finance Committee and the Senate Ways and Means Committee met in conference last week to finalize the bill. Conferees approved the $16 billion budget covering fiscal years 2020 and 2021 about a month earlier than in previous legislative sessions.
House Finance Chair Sylvia Luke said passing the budget for state operations early in the session increases public accountability and transparency of the legislative process, and allows lawmakers more time to closely scrutinize other important issues before the Legislature.
“It is monumental to pass the budget so early,” said Representative Luke. “This new budget process is what the Legislature should be doing to wrap up the budget early to allow the different subject matter committees to fully vet these issues.”
Luke said other important budget concerns, including relief for lava damage on the Big Island of Hawaiʻi, will be heard in separate bills.
OPERATING FUNDING HIGHLIGHTS
Department of Agriculture
- Add 4 permanent positions and $332,506 in both fiscal years for the Interagency Biosecurity Plan.
- Add 1 permanent position and $36,876 in both fiscal years for Livestock Inspection.
- Add 2 temporary positions and $156,634 in both fiscal years for Pesticides Branch.
Department of Accounting and General Services
- $991,777 to the State Foundation on Culture and The Arts to fund integrated works of art services at facilities statewide.
- $927,200 to the Office of Elections for fiscal year 2021 state reapportionment.
- $300,000 in fiscal year 2020 to the Office of Central Services to procure a three-fourth ton state refuse truck.
- $276,500 in fiscal year 2020 and $76,00 in fiscal year 2021 to State Archives/Records Management for security services, records destruction, and digital archives preservation and certification.
- Add $4,000,000 for security and renovations to Hawaiʻi State Capitol.
Department of the Attorney General
- $335,000 for Phase II Computer and Information Technology refurbishment.
- $31,000 for new positions at the Kauaʻi Family Law Office.
- $130,614 to establish the Hawaiʻi State Sexual Assault Response and Training Coordinator.
- Add 2 permanent positions and $237,000 in fiscal year 2020 for Department of Industrial Labor and Relations collections program for violation of labor laws.
Department of Business, Economic Development, and Tourism
- $300,000 to update the Geographical Information Systems program.
- $100,000 to continue the Creative Industries Neighbor Island Creative Lab program.
- Add 3 permanent positions and $231,000 for Creative Industries Division.
- Change MOF from revolving funds to general funds for 11 permanent positions for HCDA Kakaʻako and 2 temporary positions for HCDA Kalaeloa.
Department of Budget and Finance
- $9,837,000 for the Employer-Union Health Benefits Trust Fund for a new benefits administration system.
- $67,847,411 for fiscal year 2020 and $62,217,195 for fiscal year 2021 for the payment of debt service for the financing of state infrastructure and capital projects.
- $161,031,051 for fiscal year 2020 and $267,248,138 for fiscal year 2021 for retirement benefits payments for state employees.
- $814,659,000 for fiscal year 2020 and $847,680,000 for fiscal year 2021 for the prefunding of other post-employment benefits.
- $51,020,981 for fiscal year 2020 and $57,340,240 for fiscal year 2021 for the payment of health premiums for state employees.
- Add 1 permanent position and $258,760 for an Investment Officer.
- Add $2,800,000 in fiscal year 2020 and $1,100,000 in fiscal year 2021 for ERS software migration and upgrades.
- Add 1 permanent position and $219,223 for a Compliance Officer.
Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs
- $500,000 for fiscal year 2020 and $2,060,000 for fiscal year 2021 for the Document Management System in the Public Utilities Commission.
Department of Defense
- $4,500,000 invested into the Major Disaster Fund for the amelioration of physical disasters.
- $573,750 for emergency disaster response communication gear to combat future natural disasters.
- Add 12 temporary positions and $620,000 in both fiscal years for Hawaiʻi Emergency Management Agency.
- Add $308,000 in both fiscal years for Hawaiʻi Youth Challenge.
Department of Education
- $2,000,000 for workers’ compensation payments.
- $487,832 for fiscal year 2020, $444,832 for fiscal year 2021, and three positions for the Leadership Institute.
- Three additional educational specialist positions to provide support for deaf and hard of hearing students.
- $166,329 and 3 program specialist positions for the school food services branch.
- $500,000 for library books and materials.
- $240,000 for radio-frequency identification technology.
- $522,942 for security services.
Department of Human Services
- $38,369,000 in fiscal year 2021 for Medicaid.
Department of Health
- $289,014 in fiscal year 2020 for 12 positions and $9,195,886 in fiscal year 2021 for 127 additional positions for the new Hawaiʻi State Hospital Forensic Building.
- $7,702,000 in fiscal year 2020 and $5,814,000 in fiscal year 2021 to increase the state match for the Medicaid Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Home and Community Based Waiver.
- Add $20,000,000 in fiscal year 2020 for Hawaiʻi Health Systems Corporation.
- Add 7 permanent positions and $869,174 for Food Safety Inspections.
- Add $500,000 in fiscal year 2020 for State Laboratory mold remediation.
- Add 3 permanent positions and $265,818 in fiscal year 2020, and 6 permanent positions and $375,764 in fiscal year 2021 for non-point source water pollution.
Department of Labor
- $4,700,000 for Workforce Development Programs.
- $480,000 for Home Energy Assistance and Weatherization Assistance Programs.
- Add $2,565,469 in fiscal year 2020 and $1,772,998 in fiscal year 2021 for Disability Compensation Division Modernization Project.
- Add $225,000 in both fiscal years for independent verification and validation .
Department of Land and Natural Resources
- $1,000,000 dedicated to addressing invasive species in the Biosecurity Plan.
- $300,000 to purchase equipment for fires and emergency response.
- Add 1 position and $205,000 in both fiscal years for Climate Change Coordinator.
- Add $700,000 in fiscal year 2020 for DOCARE equipment.
Department of Public Safety
- $2,241,174 to the Sheriff’s Division to support the new Mauka Concourse at the Daniel K. Inouye International Airport and for phase I of statewide motor vehicle replacement.
- $700,000 to procure and roll out new Corrections Calibration System Software designed to integrate all inmate tracking and sentencing data from inmate incarceration to release.
- $682,216 for corrections facilities nurses and mental health professionals.
Department of Taxation
- $3,640,000 for fiscal year 2020 and $4,800,000 for fiscal year 2021 for the Tax System Modernization Project.
Department of Transportation
- $3,068477 in fiscal year 2020 and $3,789,034 to create 53 positions to support the new mauka concourse at Daniel K. Inouye Honolulu International Airport.
- $3,640,000 in fiscal year 2020 and $4,130,000 for Kahului International Airport.
- $35,000,000 for special maintenance highway projects, statewide.
- Add $2,000,000 in both fiscal years for Oʻahu Highway Traffic Control.
- Convert 421 project funded positions to the operating budget.
- Add $30,000,000 in both fiscal years for Airports Special Maintenance.
University of Hawaiʻi
- $250,000 to improve the UH Maui College Innovation Center.
- $500,000 for both fiscal years to support student mentors and tutors at the community colleges.
- $418,720 in both fiscal years and 5 positions for the Leeward Community College Teacher Education Program.