Four more weeks to go until the 2019 Legislative Session ends. While we’ve been issuing updates on highlighted bills that impact business, the Chamber has been tracking more than 100 bills relating to a variety of subject areas.
We are now in a critical period. Yesterday, the Senate and House conducted floor votes on bills that are intended to move to conference. Again, this list includes minimum wage. We hosted a Walk Around at the Capitol this morning to provide our members with a final opportunity to voice their positions on minimum wage with our legislators.
In line with that, here’s further evidence pointing to how an increase could negatively impact jobs. Hear directly from Hawaii’s businesses and non-profit community on how a raise in minimum wage could impact them.
Housing and homelessness have also been in the forefront in the media and daily conversations, as well as evident by the presence on the streets. This issue has been impacting businesses, the visitor industry and valuable organizations, such as the Hawaii Children’s Discovery Center, where the homeless population has taken up space, affecting the Center and its visitors. As such, the Chamber signed on to a coalition letter that includes support from more than 90 organizations, agencies and churches to encourage legislators to support sustained, annual commitments in support of core homelessness services to ensure long-term viability and success. This applies to the City and County of Honolulu, as well. Together, we must strengthen our efforts to ensure that this issue improves.
Lastly, only two months until our 6th Annual Hawaii on the Hill! This initiative includes a Welcome Reception, Policy Summit and the highlighted event, “Taste of Hawaii on Capitol Hill.” This year brings some surprises and an exciting line-up of speakers. Join our delegation in Washington D.C. by contacting Lori Abe.
Laulima & mahalo,
President & CEO
Many hands working together in collaboration and striving for a common goal.
Advocating for Business
Business Community Takes to the Capitol
Today, business owners and advocates walked the Hawaii State Capitol to express their concerns with proposals to raise the minimum wage. They shared personal stories about how an increase would hurt their businesses.
Chamber members at the Capitol
Left to right: Highway Inn COO Russell Ryan and Owner Monica Toguchi Ryan, Speaker of the House of Representatives Scott Saiki, Chamber of Commerce President & CEO Sherry Menor-McNamara, Island Plastic Bags President Adrian Hong, Hawaiian Chip Company Owner Jimmy Chan, and Island Plastic Bags Chairman of the Board David Hong