2014 Legislative Priorities

Adjust the Low Income Household Renters Credit for inflation (LIHRC):

HB1808, Amends income tax credit for low-income household renters to adjust for inflation.

SB2208, Amends income tax credit for low-income household renters to adjust for inflation.

Adjust the Food/Excise Tax Credit for inflation (FETC):

HB1805, Amends the refundable food/excise tax credit. Ties the credit to increases in the Consumer Price Index.

HB2538, Increases the amount and threshold of the refundable food/excise tax credit.

SB2202, Amends the refundable food/excise tax credit. Ties the credit to increases in the Consumer Price Index.

Eliminate taxation of people living below the poverty guidelines (LIWC):

HB1719, Reduces the tax liability for low-income taxpayers by creating a tax credit that will eliminate a taxpayer’s income tax liability if their federal adjusted gross income falls below federal poverty guidelines. Reduces a taxpayer’s income tax liability by 50% if the taxpayer’s federal adjusted gross income falls between 100-125% of federal poverty guidelines.

HB1806, Reduces or eliminates the state income tax liability for taxpayers with a federal adjusted gross income of less than 125 percent of the federal poverty guidelines set forth each year by the United States Department of Health and Human Services. Applies to taxable years beginning after December 31, 2014.

SB2207, Reduces or eliminates the state income tax liability for taxpayers with a federal adjusted gross income of less than 125 percent of the federal poverty guidelines set forth each year by the United States Department of Health and Human Services. Applies to taxable years beginning after December 31, 2014.

Create a state Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC):

HB1807, Establishes a refundable state Earned Income Tax Credit. Requires the Department of Taxation to provide a report to the Legislature, Governor, and the public of the Earned Income Tax Credit’s usage for the previous year.

SB2205, Establishes a refundable state Earned Income Tax Credit. Requires the Department of Taxation to provide a report to the Legislature, Governor, and the public of the Earned Income Tax Credit’s usage for the previous year.

SB2278, Establishes a state earned income tax credit.

Bills including all four proposals:

HB1936, Establishes an earned-income tax credit and reduces or eliminates the state income tax liability for taxpayers with a federal adjusted gross income of less than 125 percent of the federal poverty guidelines set forth each year by the United States Department of Health and Human Services. Amends existing tax incentives for low-income household renters and taxpayers utilizing the refundable food/excise tax credit. Applies to taxable years beginning after December 31, 2014.

HB2371, (1) Increases the amount and threshold of the refundable food/excise tax credit. (2) Increases the amount and threshold of the income tax credit for low-income household renters. (3) Reduces the tax liability for low-income taxpayers by creating a tax credit that will eliminate a taxpayer’s income tax liability if their federal adjusted gross income falls below federal poverty guidelines. Reduces a taxpayer’s income tax liability by 50% if the taxpayer’s federal adjusted gross income falls between 100-125% of federal poverty guidelines. (4) Establishes a state earned income tax credit.

SB2206, Establishes an earned-income tax credit and reduces or eliminates the state income tax liability for taxpayers with a federal adjusted gross income of less than 125 percent of the federal poverty guidelines set forth each year by the United States Department of Health and Human Services. Amends existing tax incentives for low-income household renters and taxpayers utilizing the refundable food/excise tax credit. Applies to taxable years beginning after December 31, 2014.

Minimum Wage:

“We support SB2609, which gradually raises the minimum to $10.10 in 2017, repeals the tip credit, and pegs future increases to the Consumer Price Index.”

Click here for a list of all minimum wage bills proposed this session and their status”

Affordable Housing and Homelessness

–Increase funding to the Rental Housing Trust Fund and affordable housing:

HB2499, Appropriates funds for the rental housing trust fund to build affordable rental housing projects, including projects with micro units, family units, and elder housing units.

HB2500, Restores the allocation of conveyance tax collections to the rental housing trust fund to fifty per cent beginning 7/1/2014.

SB2266, Authorizes the issuance of general obligation bonds and the appropriation of funds for deposit into the rental housing trust fund and the dwelling unit revolving fund for the purposes of financing affordable rental housing development and infrastructure development.

SB2267, Making an appropriation for the construction of micro apartment housing units.

SB2442, Appropriates funds for the rental housing trust fund to build affordable rental housing projects, including projects with micro units, family units, and elder housing units.

SB2533, Appropriates funds to improve and increase the existing public housing stock in the State. Authorizes the issuance of general obligation bonds and the appropriation of funds for deposit into the rental housing trust fund and the dwelling unit revolving fund to finance affordable rental housing development and infrastructure development. Appropriates funds for the construction of micro apartment housing units. Appropriates funds to build housing for beneficiaries on homestead land. Appropriates funds to build affordable housing projects for veterans.

SB2542, Restores the allocation of conveyance tax collections to the rental housing trust fund to fifty per cent beginning 7/1/2014.

Provide homeless services, including Housing First:

HB1886, Appropriates funding for the Housing First Initiative; for matching funds for HUD-funded Continuum of Care Permanent Supportive Housing Programs; and for the Shallow Subsidy Program. Effective July 1, 2525. (HB1886 HD1)

HB1934, Part I: Appropriates funds to the department of health for substance abuse treatment, mental health support services, and clean and sober housing services. Part II: Appropriates funds for a rental assistance program, also known as a shallow subsidy program. Parts III and IV: Appropriates funds to the department of human services to continue to administer housing first programs for chronically homeless individuals and to reestablish the homeless prevention and rapid re-housing program. Part V: Appropriates matching funds for the federal continuum of care permanent supportive housing programs to provide rental assistance in connection with supportive services. Part VI: Appropriates funds for the homeless assistance working group. Part VII: Transfers the homeless assistance working group from the department of human services to the legislature. Requires the chairpersons of the senate and house of representatives committees on human services to convene the homeless assistance working group instead of the director of human services, or a designee.

SB2535, Part I: Appropriates funds to the department of health for substance abuse treatment, mental health support services, and clean and sober housing services. Part II: Appropriates funds for a rental assistance program, also known as a shallow subsidy program. Parts III and IV: Appropriates funds to the department of human services to continue to administer housing first programs for chronically homeless individuals and to reestablish the homeless prevention and rapid re-housing program. Part V: Appropriates matching funds for the federal continuum of care permanent supportive housing programs to provide rental assistance in connection with supportive services. Part VI: Appropriates funds for the homeless assistance working group. Part VII: Transfers the homeless assistance working group from the department of human services to the legislature. Requires the chairpersons of the senate and house of representatives committees on human services to convene the homeless assistance working group instead of the director of human services, or a designee.

Hawai’i Safe and Responsible Drivers Act

Allows those without documentation of legal residence or Social Security numbers to access drivers licenses if they provide additional documentation. Endorse the Act here.

SB2935, Lists the acceptable identifying documents that driver’s license applicants may produce to obtain a license if they are ineligible to receive a social security number. Authorizes the examiner of drivers to license applicants who produce these documents.

HB1637, Allows undocumented immigrants to obtain a motor vehicle driver’s license.