2020 Legislative Session

The Chamber of Commerce Hawaii advocates for Hawaii’s business community at the Hawaii State Legislature. This year, our legislative priorities are being driven by our 4HI campaign, formed to solve pressing issues in Economy, Entrepreneurship, Environment and Education.

Legislative Action Alerts

The Chamber’s Legislative Action Alerts are emailed to members when their action is needed during session. Action Alerts enable members to send testimony on bills scheduled for hearings and letters to their legislatures, all in minutes. A description of the bill,  a written message and recipients of the messages (e.g., committee chairs, members’ legislators) are pre-set in the alerts. All members have to do is fill out their contact information, insert basic information in the  pre-written letter and click “send.” Click here to sign up to receive Action Alerts.

4HI Data Portal

To support our legislative priorities, the Chamber created the 4HI data portal that provides unique metrics 4HI priorities. Click here to view the data.

2020 Legislative Priorities

The Chamber’s legislative priorities are focused on strategic areas to support businesses in Hawaii and our 4HI campaign. Click on the link below for more information on these priorities and check back for updates on our advocacy efforts on these issues as we work through the 2019 session.

2020 Chamber Priority Bills

2020 Legislature

An Economy That Drives Success

Numerous reports highlight how expensive it is to live in Hawaii and how the state continues to have the highest cost of living in the country. While everyone would like to find one, there is no one-size-fits-all solution. We need to continue to find avenues where stakeholders and legislators can discuss and address these needs in order to find common ground solutions.

The following bills are part of the Chamber’s legislative package, created by the 4HI Economy Committee. For a full list of economy priority bills, click here.

Bill Number (Click for Status) Title Description Introduced By
SB 3163 & HB 2655 Relating to Economic Impact Statements This bill would require an economic impact statement for any proposed mandate or revenue bill.  Senator Glenn Wakai & Speaker Scott Saiki (by request)
SB 2785 Relating to Employment This bill clarifies that Hawaii’s anti-discrimination law does not prohibit or prevent an employer, employment agency, or labor organization from refusing to hire or refer or from discharging an individual for reasons unrelated to unlawful discriminatory practices. Senate President Ron Kouchi (by request)
HB 2210 Relating to the Office of Planning Directs the Office of Planning to conduct a Cost of Doing Business study that takes into account Hawaii’s unique mandates and challenges. Rep. Ryan Yamane


 Nurturing Entrepreneurship

According to the U.S. Small Business Administration Office of Advocacy, there are over 132,000 small businesses across the State of Hawaii who employ more than 52% of Hawaii workers. We must continue to work to ensure that our local entrepreneurs are provided with the resources they need to sustain and expand their businesses here in Hawaii.

The following bills are part of the Chamber’s legislative package, created by the 4HI Entrepreneurship Committee. For a full list of entrepreneurship priority bills, click here.

Bill Number (Click for Status) Title Description Introduced By
SB 2500 & HB 2139 Relating to the Hawaii Technology Development Corporation Appropriates funds to the Hawaii technology development corporation for the small business innovation research program, manufacturing assistance program, and excelerator program. Senator Jarrett Keohokalole & Rep. Angus McKelvey
HB 1109 HD1 Relating to Public Accountancy Creates practice mobility for CPAs is the general ability of a licensee in good standing from a substantially equivalent state to gain practice privilege outside of their home state without needing to get an additional license in the state where they will be serving a client or employer. Rep. Dale Kobayashi

 Educational Opportunity for All Keiki

Ensuring that every child in Hawaii has an equal opportunity to receive a quality education will help to prepare them for college and their future roles in the workforce. As the current needs in the workforce continues to change, we must continue to adapt so that we can fill these critical positions.

The following bills are part of the Chamber’s legislative package, measures endorsed by the 4HI Education Committee. For a full list of education priority bills, click here.

Bill Number (Click for Status) Title Description Introduced By
HB 2255 Relating to the University of Hawaii Promise Program Expands the Hawaii community college promise program to provide scholarships for the unmet direct cost needs of qualified students at any fouryear University of Hawaii campus who meet certain eligibility criteria. Appropriates funds for the program. Rep. Justin Woodson
SB 2296 & HB 2088 Relating to Education Establishes a working group to create a state plan to make FAFSA completion a statewide graduation requirement and an opt-out waiver for FAFSA completion by the 2022-2023 school year. Appropriates funds. Rep. Justin Woodson & Senator Donovan Dela Cruz

 A Balanced Approach to Environment

Hawaii continues to play a leading role in protecting our environment and increasing energy efficiency. We believe in the benefits of a sustainable future, but we must ensure that solutions that would affect the business community do not impede or create unintended burdens on entrepreneurs. Policies need to be shaped to create common ground, especially so that businesses can have the flexibility to develop and create sound solutions to address these important issues.

For a full list of environment priority bills, evaluated by the 4HI Environment Committee, click here.

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