HONOLULU – Gov. Neil Abercrombie today signed six agriculture- and land-related measures that address agricultural enterprises, invasive species, makeup of the state Land Board, and clarifications to the agricultural cost tax credit.
“Agriculture is a crucial component of our state’s sustainability, essential to keeping our dollars here in Hawaii and supporting thriving rural communities,” Gov. Abercrombie said. “These bills are important for the defense of our unique ecosystem, natural resources and economy. It is also our duty to care and protect the land beneath our feet, which gives us life and defines our culture.”
House Bill 1931 (Relating to Agriculture) appropriates $360,000 to the Department of Agriculture, in cooperation with the University of Hawaii College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources, to research and develop methods for the prevention and treatment of macadamia felted coccid.
House Bill 2464 (Relating to Tax Credits) clarifies language relating to the important agricultural land qualified agricultural cost tax credit.
House Bill 1716 (Making an Appropriation for Invasive Species Prevention, Control, Outreach, Research, and Planning) appropriates $5 million to the Hawaii Invasive Species Council.
House Bill 737 (Relating to Special Purpose Revenue Bonds to Assist Agricultural Enterprises) allows the state to issue special purpose revenue bonds for all agricultural enterprises, instead of just those serving important agricultural lands, dependent on the ratification of a constitutional amendment.
House Bill 1618 (Relating to the Composition of the Board of Land and Natural Resources) requires at least one member of the board to have expertise in native Hawaiian traditional and customary practices, other than the member appointed for having a background in conservation and natural resources.
House Bill 1514 (Relating to Agriculture) combats the coffee berry borer by appropriating $500,000 to create a subsidy program for the purchase of pesticides containing Beauveria bassiana until June 30, 2019.
After signing what are now Acts 100 through 105, Gov. Abercrombie proclaimed June 16-22, 2014, “Pollinator Week in Hawaii,” coinciding with National Pollinator Week. The observance is held to promote awareness of valuable crop pollinators, such as bees, butterflies, beetles, ants and flies, with benefits ranging from crop pollination to ensuring healthy watershed.