Friday, January 24, 2014


Follow HCDA repeal and other HCDA bills—opportunity for action

by Larry Geller

Civil Beat has compiled a helpful list of bills that would modify or even repeal the HCDA (Hawaii Community Development Authority). I’ve mooched their list and created Twitter feeds (see below) that you can use to follow each bill easily, if you wish.

Nothing will happen without citizen participation, so I hope these Twitter feeds will be a way to help.

I’m also experimenting, of course, to see if Twitter feeds are really useful for this purpose.

Please click the link and go over to the article for a description of what each bill is intended to do.


From the Civil Beat article:

Hawaii House Majority Leader Scott Saiki has followed through on his promise to scrutinize the Hawaii Community Development Authority, introducing eight legislative measures that range from curbing the authority of the agency to getting rid of it altogether. 

The state organization which manages development in Kakaako and Kalaeloa has been harshly criticized in recent months for approving a slew of new projects last year in Honolulu’s urban core. 

[Civil Beat, Hawaii House Majority Leader Pushes Bill to Abolish HCDA, 11/23/2014]

“Our people are being pushed off our islands because they can't afford a home for their families; our kids are being robbed of school days while developers are being given handouts; our local jobs are given away while more locals aren't being paid a living wage; our land is being turned over to Mainland developers while our environment despoiled by greed; and our sick and elderly continue to be denied access to the care they need.”—
from an brochure

“Now, Mr. Speaker, let us examine the other interesting powers of the Hawaii Community Development Authority. This super agency will have the authority to establish community development rules regarding health, safety, building, planning, zoning, and land use which would supersede all county ordinances. Not only does this violate the concept of State-County cooperation and interaction in comprehensive planning, but also amounts to the unconstitutional delegation of legislative authority to a non-elected body.”—Rep. Poepoe, speaking on the House floor against SB2394, 1976

Capitol tweetHere is the list of bills and the tweets you can subscribe to (just click on the link to subscribe). For better descriptions, please see the Civil Beat article or the bill info posted at the “status” link on the Capitol website.

Bill status Bill tweet Purpose (from bill description on status page)
HB1864 HB1864 Repeals the Hawaii Community Development Authority
HB1860 HB1860 Amends HCDA public notice requirements and requirements for project approval. Creates an administrative appeal process with available judicial review for HCDA decisions or actions
HB1861 HB1861 Amends procedures of the HCDA to require additional public notice and public input for development projects and rule changes. Establishes additional requirements for development projects before HCDA approval can be granted. Creates appeal process for HCDA actions and decisions
HB1862 HB1862 Requires the Hawaii Community Development Authority to implement affordable-housing policies that are in greater conformity with those of the City and County of Honolulu. Effective July 1, 2014
HB1863 HB1863 Eliminates the operating budget for the HCDA for FY 2014-2015. Requires a minimum horizontal separation of 300 feet between each building in the Kakaako community development district that is more than 100 feet in height. Establishes a maximum floor area ratio of 1.5 for any building in the Kakaako community development district. Authorizes citizen suits against the HCDA for violations of its required duties. Requires rules established by the HCDA to comply with all laws, ordinances, and rules.
HB1865 HB1865 Imposes a one-year moratorium on the Hawaii Community Development Authority's approval of any plans or proposals for development in the Kakaako Community Development District. Effective on July 1, 2014, and repealed on June 30, 2015
HB1866 HB_1866 Amends the manner in which members are appointed to the Hawaii Community Development Authority. Enhances legislative oversight of the Authority
HB1867 HB1867 Amends Hawaii Community Development Authority statute to establish building restrictions and prohibitions

Cindy EvansAs you will see from the status page of any of these bills, they are waiting for a hearing. You can help by emailing Water & Land Committee Chair Cindy Evans or call her office at 586-8510 and ask that the bill (or bills!) be heard.

How to follow these bills with Twitter

If you’re not a Twitter user, here’s an excuse to sign up. But even without becoming a user, you can click on a link to check on the bill status.

For Twitter users, click on the  link above and then Follow the feed.

Now, many of us have an overwhelming number of people that we follow. So I click on “User Actions” to the right of “Following” and have these tweets forwarded to my phone. I suppose one could make a “List” of bills to follow. Whatever works for you.

I hope that this will encourage people to become active and support these bills. Certainly, if you can come down to the Legislature and testify in person, that’s ideal, but it’s not an option for many. So please send in testimony.

The link in the tweet takes you to the status page for the bill, and in the upper right corner is a box to click to send in testimony. Click and send. It doesn’t have to be formal, though formal is, of course, better.

Be a part of the solution. Send in your testimony and help worthwhile bills pass. Or, you could oppose or just comment, of course.


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