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Legislature & Politics

Testimony: SB3252 would limit public records fees, but could be improved

The following written testimony was submitted by the Grassroot Institute of Hawaii for consideration Feb. 11, 2022, by the Senate Committee on Judiciary. ______________ To: Senate Committee on Judiciary.        Senator Karl Rhoads, Chair        Senator Jarrett Keohokalole, Vice Chair From: Grassroot Institute of Hawaii  

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Testimony: SB3089 lacks legislative check on governor’s emergency powers

The following testimony was submitted by the Grassroot Institute of Hawaii for consideration on Feb. 8, 2022, by the Senate Committee on Public Safety, Intergovernmental and Military Affairs. ___________ To: Senate Committee on Public Safety, Intergovernmental, and Military Affairs        Senator Clarence K. Nishihara, Chair        Senator Lynn DeCoite, Vice

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Testimony: HB2108 cryptocurrency bill simply too complicated

The following testimonies were submitted by the Grassroot Institute of Hawaii for consideration Feb. 8, 2022, by the Senate Committee on Consumer Protection and Commerce. First is the written testimony by Joe Kent, Grassroot Institute of Hawaii executive vice president, followed by the oral testimony via Zoom of Ted Kefalas,

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Array of bad bills at Legislature keeping Grassroot Institute busy

There’s never a time when you can let your guard down when our esteemed legislators get together to pass laws It’s too bad so much time and effort has to be devoted each year to trying to defeat bad legislative measures, rather than promoting bills that would help Hawaii. Truly disappointing

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Testimony: Comments on emergency powers reform bill HB1585

Photo by Charley Myers The following is testimony submitted Jan. 31, 2022, by the Grassroot Institute of Hawaii for consideration by the Hawaii House Committee on Pandemic & Disaster Preparedness. _________________ Feb. 1, 2022 10 a.m. VIA VIDEOCONFERENCE Conference Room 309 To: House Committee on Pandemic & Disaster Preparedness  

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Restrictions hurt Hawaii’s stake in cryptocurrency market

Photos by Charley Myers The following commentary was published originally on Jan. 17, 2022, in the Honolulu Star-Advertiser. _______________ Hawaii has the highest barriers in the nation for companies that exchange cryptocurrency, and those restrictions could worsen if lawmakers don’t hurry and open the door for this potentially prosperous new

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Hawaii budget needs lifestyle change in 2022

Happy new year from the board and staff of the Grassroot Institute of Hawaii. The first day of a new year is traditionally a time for resolutions and self-improvement. So, in that spirit of personal growth, it’s time we engage in some brutal candor about a problem in our state

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‘Gut and replace’ decision called ‘great civics lesson’

Hawaii residents were handed a major win for transparency earlier this month when the Hawaii Supreme Court ruled 3-2 that “gut and replace” was unconstitutional. The Grassroot Institute of Hawaii was one of several watchdog groups that supported the plaintiffs in the case via an amicus curiae brief, which was

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Legislature has abdicated its watchdog responsibility

There are many reasons to be frustrated with the governor’s current use of emergency powers: a seemingly endless state of emergency, moving goalposts and the lack of transparency, to name a few.  But equally frustrating is the Legislature’s inability to rein it in. It had the opportunity with HB103 in

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Why reform of Hawaii’s emergency powers law failed

As Hawaii’s 2021 legislative session came to a close on April 29, many Hawaii residents were disappointed by the failure of the Legislature to approve HB103, which would have placed limits on the governor’s emergency powers. Hawaii has been under a state of emergency since March 2020, when Gov. David

Read More →

Testimony: SB3252 would limit public records fees, but could be improved

The following written testimony was submitted by the Grassroot Institute of Hawaii for consideration Feb. 11, 2022, by the Senate Committee on Judiciary. ______________ To: Senate Committee on Judiciary.        Senator Karl Rhoads, Chair        Senator Jarrett Keohokalole, Vice Chair From: Grassroot Institute of Hawaii  

Read More →

Testimony: SB3089 lacks legislative check on governor’s emergency powers

The following testimony was submitted by the Grassroot Institute of Hawaii for consideration on Feb. 8, 2022, by the Senate Committee on Public Safety, Intergovernmental and Military Affairs. ___________ To: Senate Committee on Public Safety, Intergovernmental, and Military Affairs        Senator Clarence K. Nishihara, Chair        Senator Lynn DeCoite, Vice

Read More →

Testimony: HB2108 cryptocurrency bill simply too complicated

The following testimonies were submitted by the Grassroot Institute of Hawaii for consideration Feb. 8, 2022, by the Senate Committee on Consumer Protection and Commerce. First is the written testimony by Joe Kent, Grassroot Institute of Hawaii executive vice president, followed by the oral testimony via Zoom of Ted Kefalas,

Read More →

Array of bad bills at Legislature keeping Grassroot Institute busy

There’s never a time when you can let your guard down when our esteemed legislators get together to pass laws It’s too bad so much time and effort has to be devoted each year to trying to defeat bad legislative measures, rather than promoting bills that would help Hawaii. Truly disappointing

Read More →

Testimony: Comments on emergency powers reform bill HB1585

Photo by Charley Myers The following is testimony submitted Jan. 31, 2022, by the Grassroot Institute of Hawaii for consideration by the Hawaii House Committee on Pandemic & Disaster Preparedness. _________________ Feb. 1, 2022 10 a.m. VIA VIDEOCONFERENCE Conference Room 309 To: House Committee on Pandemic & Disaster Preparedness  

Read More →

Restrictions hurt Hawaii’s stake in cryptocurrency market

Photos by Charley Myers The following commentary was published originally on Jan. 17, 2022, in the Honolulu Star-Advertiser. _______________ Hawaii has the highest barriers in the nation for companies that exchange cryptocurrency, and those restrictions could worsen if lawmakers don’t hurry and open the door for this potentially prosperous new

Read More →

Hawaii budget needs lifestyle change in 2022

Happy new year from the board and staff of the Grassroot Institute of Hawaii. The first day of a new year is traditionally a time for resolutions and self-improvement. So, in that spirit of personal growth, it’s time we engage in some brutal candor about a problem in our state

Read More →

‘Gut and replace’ decision called ‘great civics lesson’

Hawaii residents were handed a major win for transparency earlier this month when the Hawaii Supreme Court ruled 3-2 that “gut and replace” was unconstitutional. The Grassroot Institute of Hawaii was one of several watchdog groups that supported the plaintiffs in the case via an amicus curiae brief, which was

Read More →

Legislature has abdicated its watchdog responsibility

There are many reasons to be frustrated with the governor’s current use of emergency powers: a seemingly endless state of emergency, moving goalposts and the lack of transparency, to name a few.  But equally frustrating is the Legislature’s inability to rein it in. It had the opportunity with HB103 in

Read More →

Why reform of Hawaii’s emergency powers law failed

As Hawaii’s 2021 legislative session came to a close on April 29, many Hawaii residents were disappointed by the failure of the Legislature to approve HB103, which would have placed limits on the governor’s emergency powers. Hawaii has been under a state of emergency since March 2020, when Gov. David

Read More →

PETITION: Exempt medical services from Hawaii's excise tax!

To the Hawaii Legislature:

Hawaii families face skyrocketing healthcare costs and a shortage of doctors. Exempting medical services from Hawaii’s general excise tax would result in millions of dollars in savings for residents and help bring doctors back.

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