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Memo from State
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Legislative News Report - August 1970 (Nan Lowers & Alice Scott)
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Analysis of Ballot Issue - Constitutional Amendment: BOE
National Program

Legislative News Report - August 1970

Many thanks to all of you League members who rallied to the call and contacted our legislators in our hour of need. With your help we are able to report the successful conclusion of our lobbying effort on "Election Laws" this year. HB-752 was introduced into the House in 1969, passed, and sent over to the Senate where it appeared to be dying in committees, We centered our efforts in getting this bill moving in the Senate and with all of our lobbying at public hearings and informal "caucuses" and with newspaper reporting, the bill received final readings in the legislature on April 27, 1970 (the 62nd day of the Session). It was signed into law by the Governor. Briefly the final bill covers:


The law becomes effective upon passage except for the reporting of campaign contributions which will become effective January 1971.

Reportable dollar amount of contributions is to be $500 (a contribution of $499, or less, need not be reported.) This amount applies to contributions, from one source of lesser amounts that total over $500, as well as single amounts.

Other changes you should remember:

Requires a candidate to actually live in the district he represents.

The procedure for a splinter-group political party to be placed on the ballot, and to be removed as a party (after election) if it does not make a substantial showing is spelled out.

Anonymous campaign contributions are prohibited.

All the election law is recodified -- if you want to check it now, you only need to go to one spot- not all the way back to laws enacted by the Republics

With the passage of this bill, FIVE years of study and work are concluded by the League. Hawaii has amended the law to allow new residents to vote for President and Vice President. However, we still have two consensus positions to work for during the next session: (1) Lower the residency requirement to 6 months for new Hawaii residents to vote for state and local officials. (2) The 18 year old vote which the League favors will be on the ballot again in November as a Constitutional Amendment change.

During the coming year there will be unit discussions on the cost of campaigning. It is reaching astronomical gums. Keep a record and clipping file of candidate expenditures. We hope that by the next session of the Legislature, that the League will be in the position to offer a bill which will help curb campaign expenditure in favor of all candidates.

Other bills were introduced on Campaign Contributions. We testified on 5B-1863 introduced by Senator Duke Kawasaki. It was a far more comprehensive control on contributions than what is in HB-752. Wouldn't it be wonderful to be able to push through some excellent legislation in 1971? Remember it is possible.... look what you have accomplished in five years.


Once again the membership responded with calls and letters. The media-backed the bill. HB-111 was introduced into the House in 1969, passed and sent to the Senate where it also received a final reading April 27, 1970 (the 62nd day of the Session). Four major expansions were in the bill.

A one year delay before a former State employee or legislator can represent private interests on matters, he (or she) handled as a government official. Prohibits State legislators appearing before State administrative agencies on contingency fee basis (one in which payment depends on favorable action by the government).

Disclosure to the Ethics Commission of all fees paid to legislators for appearing before State agencies.

Prohibits State employees representing private interests where undue advantage for the client with the government can reasonably be inferred. The bill was passed an was vetoed by the Governor. Here the League will not be able to write "finis to five years of work, but will have to start in the next session to get an Ethics Bill passed again.

We would like to remind you that in 1968 the voters of the State of Hawaii approved a constitutional amendment stating -"The Legislature. and each political subdivision shall adopt a code of ethics for appointed and elected officers and employees of the State or the political subdivision, including members of boards, commissions and other bodies."

During the coming months is the opportunity for Leaguers to talk to candidates for the state ,legislature about an ethics bill, campaign financing and disclosure.

Alice Scott
Nan Lowers

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