Honolulu, Hawaiʻi – Today, members of the Hawaiʻi State Legislature's Keiki Caucus were joined by community advocates to unveil the 2024 Keiki Caucus Bill Package, which is comprised of five priority bills aimed at addressing the health and welfare of Hawaiʻi's youth.
"Our bill package this legislative session is focused on financial help for youth and their families, as well as on keeping them healthy. The bills are high-impact initiatives that help set the stage for health and success as our keiki grow," said Keiki Caucus Convener and Representative Lisa Marten (D-51 Waimānalo, Keolu Hills, Lanikai, portion of Kailua).
The bill package contains legislation introduced by House members: Speaker Scott K. Saiki, House Majority Leader Nadine K. Nakamura, Representative Amy A. Perruso, Representative Lisa Marten (Keiki Caucus Convener), Representative Scot Z. Matayoshi, and Senate members: Senator Joy A. San Buenaventura, Senator Dru Mamo Kanuha, Senator Karl Rhoads, and Senator Maile S.L. Shimabukuro.
The following measures were introduced:
HB1775 - Relating to Education
Beginning in the 2024-2025 school year, requires the Department of Education to provide free breakfast and lunch to all students enrolled in department schools. Appropriates funds.
Measure supported by Hawaiʻi Appleseed
HB1776 - Relating to the Household and Dependent Care Services Tax Credit
Increases a taxpayer's applicable percentage of employment-related expenses that may be claimed for the household and dependent care services tax credit for five years.
Measure supported by Hawaiʻi Children's Action Network Speaks!
HB1777 - Relating to Dental Hygienists
Authorizes dental hygienists who are under the direct supervision of a licensed dentist to perform preventive dental sealant screenings and apply dental sealants on certain individuals in a school-based oral health program.
Measure supported by Hawaiʻi Oral Health Coalition
HB1778 - Relating to Tobacco Products
Prohibits the sale of flavored tobacco products and mislabeled e-liquid products that contain nicotine. Repeals language making the sale of cigarettes, tobacco products, and electronic smoking devices a statewide concern and preempting county ordinances and regulations. Effective 1/1/2025.
Measure supported by Hawaiʻi Pacific Health Institute
HB1779 - Relating to the University of Hawai‘i
Establishes a three-year summer tuition pilot program to provide funding to UH community colleges to offset the costs aligning the resident tuition rates for the summer semester with the resident tuition rates for the spring and fall semesters at the community colleges. Appropriates funds.
Measure supported by Kapiʻolani Community College Student Congress
The Keiki Caucus, established in 1994, is a collaboration between Hawaiʻi state legislators, community leaders, and youth-centered organizations who come together to propose, draft, support, and implement policy changes that will improve the lives of Hawaiʻi’s young people.