Mauna Kea Science Reserve

Transfers the management of the Mauna Kea Science Reserve from
the University of Hawaii at Manoa to the University of Hawaii at
Hilo.  Appropriates funds for the transfer.

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES                H.B. NO.           
TWENTIETH LEGISLATURE, 1999                                
STATE OF HAWAII                                            

                   A  BILL  FOR  AN  ACT



 1      SECTION 1.  The legislature finds that the astronomical
 2 research facilities located on the summit of Mauna Kea are the
 3 most advanced in the world and bring international status and
 4 recognition to the University of Hawaii and the Institute for
 5 Astronomy.
 6      Astronomical research activities on Mauna Kea and their
 7 support facilities in Hilo and Waimea are a significant local
 8 employer and valued economic activity of the island of Hawaii.
 9      Currently, the management of the Mauna Kea science reserve
10 is with the University of Hawaii's Institute for Astronomy in
11 collaboration with the department of land and natural resources.
12 The Institute's focus and expertise is in astronomy.
13      The Institute for Astronomy is headquartered at the
14 University of Hawaii at Manoa.  Thus, management of the Mauna Kea
15 science reserve is located away from the island of Hawaii.  Many
16 residents of the Big Island perceive this off-island management
17 to be insensitive to the concerns of local groups with strong
18 interest in the mountain, including traditional culture
19 practitioners, environmentalists, recreational users, and others.

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 1      The state auditor recently documented in Report No. 98-6
 2 that the University of Hawaii's management of the Mauna Kea
 3 science reserve is inadequate to ensure the protection of natural
 4 resources, with management plans often late or weakly
 5 implemented.  Management has demonstrated a lack of concern for
 6 historic preservation and the cultural value of Mauna Kea.
 7      Public dissatisfaction with the current management structure
 8 for the summit of Mauna Kea has been broad-based and was recently
 9 demonstrated by the diverse public hearing testimony gathered by
10 the Mauna Kea advisory committee.  The advisory committee was
11 appointed by the President of the University and is
12 representative of a broad range of those with interests in the
13 mountain.
14      For these reasons, the legislature finds that it is
15 appropriate that management of the science reserve should be
16 relocated to the island of Hawaii.
17      The University of Hawaii at Hilo is the Big Island entity
18 with the broadest range of knowledge and experience related to
19 the management of Mauna Kea.  It has expertise in Hawaiian
20 culture, archaeology and historic site management, astronomy,
21 mountain biology and restoration ecology, land use planning, and
22 natural resources management. 

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 1      In addition, the University of Hawaii at Hilo has the only
 2 undergraduate astronomy program within the University of Hawaii
 3 system, and that program has failed to benefit, so far, from the
 4 agglomeration of astronomical facilities on Mauna Kea.
 5      With the increase in University autonomy, the University of
 6 Hawaii at Hilo can create and implement the management and fiscal
 7 processes to receive and disburse funds in the best interests of
 8 the multiple use management objectives of the science reserve.
 9      In addition, a transfer of the nature contemplated by this
10 Act would allow enhanced educational use and applied research
11 funding opportunities for the University of Hawaii at Hilo
12 faculty and students in a broad range of disciplines, including
13 Hawaiian studies and archaeology, atmospheric sciences,
14 restoration ecology, geography and natural resources management,
15 in addition to astronomy.
16      The purpose of this Act is to transfer the management of the
17 Mauna Kea science reserve, including the entity known as Mauna
18 Kea support services, from the University of Hawaii at Manoa to
19 the University of Hawaii at Hilo.
20      SECTION 2.  All rights, powers, functions, and duties of the
21 Institute of Astronomy, as they relate to the management of the
22 Mauna Kea science reserve, including the existing entity known as
23 Mauna Kea support services, are transferred from the University
24 of Hawaii at Manoa to the University of Hawaii at Hilo.

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 1      All officers and employees whose functions are transferred
 2 by this Act shall be transferred with their functions and shall
 3 continue to perform their regular duties upon their transfer,
 4 subject to the state personnel laws and this Act.
 5      No officer or employee of the state having tenure shall
 6 suffer any loss of salary, seniority, prior service credit,
 7 vacation, sick leave, or other employee benefit or privilege as a
 8 consequence of this Act; provided, however, nothing in this Act
 9 shall be construed to exempt any office or employee of the State
10 involved in this transfer from any type of employment action,
11 including, without limitation, any reduction in force.
12      SECTION 3.  All appropriations, records, equipment,
13 machines, files, supplies, contracts, books, papers, documents,
14 maps, and other property heretofore made, used, acquired, or held
15 by the Institute of Astronomy as they relate to the Mauna Kea
16 science reserve, including the existing entity known as Mauna Kea
17 support services, shall be transferred from the University of
18 Hawaii at Manoa to the University of Hawaii at Hilo.
19      SECTION 4.  The University of Hawaii shall create, at the
20 University of Hawaii at Hilo, a management authority for the
21 Mauna Kea science reserve, including the existing entity known as
22 the Mauna Kea support services, which management authority shall
23 have a policy making board representing a broad cross-section of
24 science, community and governmental interests.

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 1      SECTION 5.  There is appropriated out of the general
 2 revenues of the State of Hawaii the sum of $1 or so much thereof
 3 as may be necessary for fiscal year 1999-2000 to effectuate the
 4 management transfer set out in this Act.
 5      SECTION 6.  The sum appropriated shall be expended by the
 6 University of Hawaii for the purposes of this Act.
 7      SECTION 7.  This Act shall take effect on July 1, 1999.
 9                           INTRODUCED BY:  _______________________