Government Relations


Every year, DHHL prepares and submits legislative proposals for inclusion in the Governor’s Administrative Package for the next session of the Hawaii State Legislature.

Legislative Timeline

  • July 2021 – DHHL solicits legislative proposals
  • August 9, 2021 – Deadline to submit legislative proposals to DHHL.
  • September 2021 – DHHL brings proposals to the Hawaiian Homes Commission for approval.
  • September 2021 – HHC approves 10 proposals to move forward

Draft Legislative Proposals

Legislative Proposal Description Progress
Proposal HHL-01(22)

Independent Counsel

This proposal allows the Department to retain independent legal counsel to be paid by the State and use the services of the attorney general as needed when the interests of the State and the department are aligned.  
Proposal HHL-02(22)

Water Resource Management

This proposal adds the Chair of the Hawaiian Homes Commission or the Chair’s designee to the Commission on Water Resource Management.  
Proposal HHL-03(22) 

Tax Exemption

This proposal exempts any homestead development for the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands from general excise taxes.  
Proposal HHL-04(22) 


This proposal establishes a low-interest loan program to offer financial assistance for lessees on Hawaiian Home Lands with cesspools to be upgraded or converted to septic systems or aerobic treatment unit systems, or connected to existing sewer systems or any other wastewater treatment systems approved by the Department of Health.  
Proposal HHL-07(22) 


This proposal requires the Counties to maintain infrastructure on Hawaiian Home Lands that were built to County standards.  
Proposal HHL-08(22)

Historic Preservation Reviews

This proposal allows the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands to assume review of the effect of any proposed project on historic properties or burial sites for lands under its jurisdiction.  
Proposal HHL-09(22)


This proposal authorizes the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands to commission a study on the feasibility and revenue to be generated by limited casino gaming and address the public health concerns.  
Proposal HHL-10(22)

Interim Rules

This proposal creates a new section of the HRS that allows DHHL, after consultation with beneficiaries and organizations representing beneficiaries, to issue interim rules which shall be exempt from the public notice, public hearing, and gubernatorial approval requirements of Chapter 91 as long as the interim rules shall be effective for not more than eighteen months.  
Proposal HHL-11(22)

Compliance and Enforcement

This proposal establishes a compliance and enforcement program within the Department to investigate complaints, conduct investigations, and cooperate with enforcement authorities to ensure compliance with the Hawaiian Homes Commission Act, 1920, as amended and rules adopted thereunder as well as all other state laws and rules, and county ordinances on Hawaiian Home Lands.  
Proposal HHL-12(22) 


This proposal allows an adopted individual to benefit both by relationship through a natural parent and through an adoptive parent in a disposition or other designation provided for in accordance with the Hawaiian Homes Commission Act, 1920, as amended or administrative rules while also allowing the adopted individual and individual’s natural family to continue to have the same familial relationship.   
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