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  • Writer's pictureHawai'i House Democrats


Honolulu, Hawaiʻi – On Thursday, the House’s ACT 279 Working Group will convene to discuss the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands (DHHL) execution of $600 million in appropriated funds to address the urgent needs of its beneficiary waiting list.

In January 2023, the House adopted H.R. No. 10, establishing a working group to oversee DHHL's execution of funds pursuant to Act 279, Session Laws of Hawaiʻi 2022. The six-member bipartisan group includes Representative Troy N. Hashimoto (Chair), Representative David A. Tarnas, Representative Daniel Holt, Representative Scott Y. Nishimoto, Representative Mahina Poepoe, and Representative Gene Ward.

"We look forward to working closely with DHHL in providing oversight of the $600 million appropriated by the Legislature. This is a rare opportunity to make major investments in Native Hawaiian housing, and it is critical that funds are expeditiously and responsibly expended," said House Committee on Housing Chair Troy Hashimoto. "This has the potential, if successful, to jumpstart and allow us to make major strides in the reduction of the long-standing waitlist."

Over the interim, the group will craft a report to be submitted to the House of Representatives no later than twenty days prior to the commencement of the Regular Session of 2024, including topics such as the leveraging or maximization of the appropriated funds, alternative financing options for beneficiaries and developers, and alternative housing development options aside from homestead lot development.

"The House intends on working with the Administration to ensure the $600 million appropriated to reduce the waitlist is maximized to assist the greatest number of beneficiaries," said Speaker Scott K. Saiki.

WHO: ACT 279 Working Group

Representatives of the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands

· DHHL Director and Hawaiian Homes Commission Chair Kali Watson

· Land Development Division Acting Administrator Stewart Matsunaga

WHAT: The House of Representatives' ACT 279 Working Group will hold its first informational briefing to provide an overview and update on DHHL's execution of funds. Review the meeting agenda here.

WHEN: Thursday, June 1, 2023

10:00 a.m.

WHERE: Hawaiʻi State Capitol

Conference Room 329

The meeting will be streamed live on the House's YouTube channel at:



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