e-Voice of Business April 3, 2019

President’s Message

Aloha Chamber members,

Just a few more days until the hearing process ends at the State Legislature. Thereafter, any bills that are still alive will likely go to conference for deliberations.
Several bills are still moving which we believe, while well-intended, will have an impact on Hawaii’s economy and environment. These bills include minimum wage increases, a tax on real estate investment trusts, and one bill which would require employers to disclose salary ranges in job postings and the factors that are considered in setting salary levels to prospective employees. As part of our advocacy efforts this session, bills that we support include ones that promote a talent pipeline, call for an audit of the DOE, and funding of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program and grant programs utilized by the Chamber’s Manufacturing in Hawaii initiative.  
We plan to do a Walk Around at the Capitol to provide our members with a final opportunity to voice their positions with our legislators. If you are interested in joining us, please email our Assistant VP of Government Affairs & Alliances, Dan Kouchi.

Laulima & mahalo,

Sherry Menor-McNamara
President & CEO

Many hands working together in collaboration and striving for a common goal.

Advocating for Business

What is a Conference Committee?

As we approach the upcoming conference committees at the State Legislature, here is a brief overview of the conference process.
What is a Conference Committee?
If one version of a bill comes out of the Senate, and another version comes out of the House, it poses a problem as only one version of a bill can become law. When both Chambers can’t agree to adopt the other’s version, the bill moves into the conference process. A conference committee is made up of members from both the House and Senate, appointed by the Senate President and the House Speaker, who work to come to an agreement on a final version of the bill to send to the Governor. Conference Committees also have chairs. Conference Committees also have chairs, who are usually the subject matter chairs for the bills.

How to Stay Engaged During Conference
Since the public has already had the opportunity to testify during previous committee hearings, there will not be any opportunity to testify during conference committee hearings. These hearings are, however, open to the public, and we encourage everyone members who are concerned about certain legislation to continue to interact with your own state senator and representative. Hearing from their own constituents will help them know that you are concerned about certain bills passing.

Additionally, when conference committee members are announced, reaching out to these members would help to convey concerns or support for certain measures to the lawmakers that are making the decisions on the final bill.
The Chamber and the BA team will continue to be engaged with lawmakers throughout the conference committee process.

Supporting our Military

USS Zumwalt Arrives in Pearl Harbor



The lead ship of the U.S. Navy’s newest class of guided-missile destroyers, USS Zumwalt (DDG 1000), arrived in Pearl Harbor yesterday.

The Zumwalt-class destroyer will be capable of performing critical maritime missions of deterrence and power projection and creating battlespace complexity for adversaries with its abilities to operate both near to shore and in the open sea. 

Building our Membership

Soft Skills Program Deadline Extended

The Chamber, in partnership with Kapiolani Community College, presents Global Communications, a soft skills training program consisting of two courses: “Foundations of Communication” and “Communication and Collaborating with Others.”

Participants first learn foundational communication skills and progress towards building skills to communicate effectively with various audiences and in different situations. Courses will be available in April and May – please register at links below:

Foundations of Communication – Register by APRIL 10TH

Communication and Collaborating with Others – Register by APRIL 23RD


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