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Annual Meeting
President's Message (Pearl Johnson)
Suggested Programs for Adoption at April Annual Meeting
Nominating Committee Report
Monitoring City Council
Proposed Budget for FY 4/1/01 to 3/31/02
Parental Notification & Age of Consent (Suzanne Meisenzahl)
Help Wanted
Roster Changes / Corrections

President's Message

Members of the League may be justified in believing that their president is experienced in preparing and presenting testimony to the legislature. However, until just 2 weeks ago, I had only read testimony prepared by others. With the help of Jean Aoki, chair of the state legislative committee, I was able to screw up my courage and support a bill on my own.

I have long been interested in a "bottle bill" requiring a refund on all beverage containers. The League has long held positions on recycling and solid waste management which supports such a bill. I obtained a copy of all the bottle bills and tried to see how they differed. I checked with the Sierra Club which heads the coalition backing the legislation. Logging on to www.capitol.hawaii.gov, I discovered that HB 1256 was the bill which would be heard, the other bills apparently disregarded.

It seemed the bill was sailing through committees by the time I figured out what was going on. Then I read that the Finance committee was not even going to hear the bill. But then an e-mail from the Sierra Club told me it would be heard after all and when. With the help of Jean Aoki and some League material at the office, I prepared my testimony and faxed it to the Sergeant-at-Arms of the House. Reading my testimony and listening to others' testimony was a rewarding and interesting experience. The misrepresentations of the beverage and grocery industries aroused my indignation. The committee passed HB 1256 with amendments we can live with. We must still make sure the Senate passes it.

I wrote so exhaustively about my experience to encourage you to work with us on legislation you are interested. If you have a cause you strongly support, call the League office (531-7448) to see if there is a League position supporting your cause. If so, please come in and talk about your interests and concerns. We can help you prepare testimony which follows League principles and policies. Jean Aoki knows the ins and outs and is very helpful.

Pearl Johnson

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