BILLS HEARD IN HOUSE PUBLIC SAFETY (PBS) and
PUBLIC SAFETY & MILITARY AFFAIRS COMMITTEE/TECHNOLOGY & THE ARTS (PSM/TEC)
THURSDAY, JANUARY 31, 2013
Mahalo to all who sent in Testimony – It definitely helped!
HB255 MEDICAL RELEASE PROGRAM; COMPASSIONATE RELEASE
PBS, JUD, FIN
This bill PASSED as a House Draft 1 (HD1) with the following amendments:1) clarifying the term “Director”; 2) making it a 3-year pilot program (as PSD suggested); 3) deleting language regarding cost (PSD doesn’t want to base its decisions regarding health care on cost); 4) defecting the date to 2050 so further discussions can occur (this is also so that if the bill goes to conference, the Chair will be on it – this is a tactical move and one that killed the bill last year. What is different this year is that PSD supports the bill. 11 testimonies, all in support …MAHALO MAHALO MAHALO;
The bill now goes to Judiciary and I will be asking for a hearing asap.
HB 273 WRONGFUL IMPRISONMENT PBS, JUD, FIN
This bill was DEFERRED, but I was told by the Vice Chair that they would be bringing it back next week. We want this to pass onto the Judiciary Committee. The AG (Mark Nomura) opposed the bill. This AG’s office is really harsh. They think a panel should be appointed to see if there is a need for restitution for people wrongfully convicted and imprisoned. (The Vice Chair said that even if one person was harmed because of a state error, there is a need.) The AG also said he didn’t understand what innocent meant – did it mean those who were pardoned or those whose cases were thrown out for a technicality, or whose cases were reversed. We will work to address these concerns in subsequent hearings. I asked the Senate committee (the Senate version of this bill is referred to PSM/JDL) to schedule a hearing and Sen. Espero said that he must get Sen. Hee to agree to a hearing. I will send an e-mail to Sen. Hee and talk with his staff about a hearing.
SB 67 EYEWITNESS ID PSM/TEC, JDL
This bill PASSED with a defective date so it could be sent to Judiciary and Labor Committee. I had a very interesting conversation with Major Richardson of HPD the other day about this bill. All 4 county police departments oppose the bill. Major Richardson told me that the police have already changed some of their protocols (I think our efforts have been paying off in this regard). They are now using sequential lineups instead of composite (6-pack) photos and blind administration, which follows best practices that we have been recommending for many, many years. I am working with experts to determine what else would make it stronger. The police do not want the Legislature to set this policy, but told me that they would follow whatever the Judiciary decides. I’m working that angle as well.
So it was a relatively successful day at the big square building. Lots of follow up work to do and I’m on it!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed people can change the world. Indeed it is the only thing that ever has.