Thursday, December 1, 2022
Hawai'i Free Press

Current Articles | Archives

Sunday, April 13, 2014
Conference Committee: Let the Games Begin!
By News Release @ 3:05 AM :: 3215 Views :: Hawaii State Government

Let the Games Begin!

News Release from Senator Laura Thielen April 10, 2014

Because I’m not a Committee Chair, I have the time to observe Conference Committee and post about it.

Even powerless legislators have some perks.

But seriously, Conference Committee is a very interesting time to observe the Legislature, Legislators and the advocates who swarm around us now.  Because it is such an intense, high stakes period, it reveals a lot about the process and the people.

For example, the seasoned veterans are not phased by much, because they’ve seen it all.  People with less experience, or ones who tend to micromanage, get tense and easily upset by public scrutiny.  Bullies get pushier; dealers posture; trouble-makers know just when and where to light the match; and the ones who play fair tend to focus on what they control, move bills forward promptly and don’t get sucked into the drama.

Conference is an insider’s game.  No testimony is taken in Conference Committee hearings; most negotiations take place outside of the hearing; usually only the first hearing is published, with subsequent hearings being announced at each hearing.  This is a fast and furious period where we’re dealing with several hundred bills getting down to the final form.

But, as Winston Churchill reportedly said, democracy is the worst form of government, except for all the others that have been tried – or something to that effect.  If you have a better process, by all means lay it out in the comment section, and we can advocate for improvements.

Bills to watch this Conference period include:

  • HCDA-Kakaako (one bill allowing residential development on Kakaako Makai, the other limiting height and a few other items to rein in HCDA on Kakaako Mauka);
  • Reducing the Minimum School Instructional Hours established in law;
  • Campaign Finance;
  • Minimum Wage;
  • Multiple High Tech Park bills (creating mini-HCDAs);
  • Bills identified by the League of Women Voters as “Gut and Replace;” and
  • Allowing solar facilities on 100% of our second-best agricultural soils.

I’m writing this at home and don’t have bill numbers handy.  But I’ll post more on these and other matters over the next couple weeks.

For the newbies, Conference Committee is the “sudden death overtime” of the legislative session.  Bills have made it through both the House and Senate, but the sides haven’t agreed to the final language.  Click here for an explanation of the process.

Click here for instructions on how to follow a bill in Conference Committee.

Links

TEXT "follow HawaiiFreePress" to 40404

Register to Vote

2aHawaii

808 Silent Majority

ACA Signups Hawaii

Alliance Defending Freedom

Aloha Pregnancy Care Center

American Council of Trustees and Alumni

AntiPlanner

Antonio Gramsci Reading List

A Place for Women in Waipio

Astronomy Hawaii

Back da Blue Hawaii

Ballotpedia Hawaii

Better Hawaii

Broken Trust

Build More Hawaiian Homes Working Group

ChinaTownWatch.com

Christian Homeschoolers of Hawaii

Cliff Slater's Second Opinion

DVids Hawaii

FIRE

Fix Oahu!

Frontline: The Fixers

Genetic Literacy Project

Grassroot Institute

Habele.org

Hawaii Aquarium Fish Report

Hawaii Aviation Preservation Society

Hawaii Catholic TV

Hawaii Christian Coalition

Hawaii Cigar Association

Hawaii Coalition Against Legalized Gambling

Hawaii ConCon Info

Hawaii Credit Union Watch

Hawaii Crop Improvement Association

Hawaii Debt Clock

Hawaii Defense Foundation

Hawaii Family Forum

Hawaii Farmers and Ranchers United

Hawaii Farmer's Daughter

Hawaii Federalist Society

Hawaii Federation of Republican Women

Hawaii Future Project

Hawaii Gathering of Eagles

Hawaii History Blog

Hawaii Homeschool Association

Hawaii Jihadi Trial

Hawaii Legal News

Hawaii Legal Short-Term Rental Alliance

Hawaii Life Alliance

Hawaii March for Life 

Hawaii Matters

Hawaii's Partnership for Appropriate & Compassionate Care

Hawaii Public Charter School Network

Hawaii Rifle Association

Hawaii Shippers Council

Hawaii Smokers Alliance

Hawaii State Data Lab

Hawaii Together

HIEC.Coop

HiFiCo

Hiram Fong Papers

Homeschool Legal Defense Hawaii

Honolulu Navy League

Honolulu Traffic

House Minority Blog

Imua TMT

Inouye-Kwock, NYT 1992

Inside the Nature Conservancy

Inverse Condemnation

Investigative Project on Terrorism

July 4 in Hawaii

Kakaako Cares

Keep Hawaii's Heroes

Land and Power in Hawaii

Legislative Committee Analysis Tool

Lessons in Firearm Education

Lingle Years

Malulani Foundation

Managed Care Matters -- Hawaii

Malama Pregnancy Center of Maui

MentalIllnessPolicy.org

Military Home Educators' Network Oahu

Missile Defense Advocacy

MIS Veterans Hawaii

NAMI Hawaii

Natatorium.org

National Christian Foundation Hawaii

National Parents Org Hawaii

NFIB Hawaii News

No GMO Means No Aloha

Not Dead Yet, Hawaii

NRA-ILA Hawaii

Oahu Alternative Transport

Obookiah

OHA Lies

Opt Out Today

OurFutureHawaii.com

Patients Rights Council Hawaii

PEACE Hawaii

People vs Machine

Pritchett Cartoons

Pro-GMO Hawaii

P.U.E.O.

RailRipoff.com

Rental by Owner Awareness Assn

ReRoute the Rail

Research Institute for Hawaii USA

Rick Hamada Show

RJ Rummel

Robotics Organizing Committee

Save Dillingham Airfield

School Choice in Hawaii

SenatorFong.com

Sink the Jones Act

Statehood for Guam

Talking Tax

Tax Foundation of Hawaii

The Real Hanabusa

Time Out Honolulu

Trustee Akina KWO Columns

UCC Truths

US Tax Foundation Hawaii Info

VAREP Honolulu

Waagey.org

West Maui Taxpayers Association

What Natalie Thinks

Whole Life Hawaii

Yes2TMT