REPORT TITLE:
Public Lands; Church Lots


DESCRIPTION:
Allows church lots, granted in the 19th century with the
intention that the sites be devoted to school or religious
purposes, to be grandfathered under P.L. 84-481, 70 Sts. 104 to
allow the use of not more than one-half acre for non-eleemosynary
purposes.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
                                            1751        
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES                H.B. NO.           
TWENTIETH LEGISLATURE, 1999                                
STATE OF HAWAII                                            
                                                             
________________________________________________________________
________________________________________________________________


                   A  BILL  FOR  AN  ACT

RELATING TO PUBLIC LANDS.



BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:

 1      SECTION 1.  During the territorial administration, in the
 
 2 Organic Act of 1900, Congress allowed all churches that were in
 
 3 existence in 1895 to apply for a land patent for a "nominal
 
 4 consideration" if their sites were still being occupied according
 
 5 to their original intent.  In 1956, Congress enacted Public Law
 
 6 84-481, 70 Sts. 104, which provided that lands of less than one-
 
 7 half acre in area granted by the territory for eleemosynary
 
 8 purposes could be relieved of that restriction upon application;
 
 9 provided that those lands had sufficiently changed to warrant
 
10 such action.  Section 5(f) of the Admission Act of 1959
 
11 established a clear directive that the new State was to hold all
 
12 of the public lands returned to it under the express terms and
 
13 conditions created by Congress.  From the beginning of statehood,
 
14 the State breached the terms of section 5(f) when it failed to
 
15 enact laws governing public lands within the time period fixed by
 
16 Congress.  When pressed, the legislature in large part simply
 
17 reenacted most of the territorial laws governing public lands,
 
18 section 5(f) notwithstanding.
 
19      The purpose of this Act is to allow churches, granted during
 

 
Page 2                                         1751        
                                     H.B. NO.           
                                                        
                                                        


 1 the territorial administration, to be grandfathered under the
 
 2 Organic Act of 1900 and section 5(f) of the Admission Act to use
 
 3 their properties under one-half acre in area for non-eleemosynary
 
 4 purposes; provided that a nominal consideration is made for the
 
 5 new purpose of the land.
 
 6      SECTION 2.  Section 171-63, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is
 
 7 amended to read as follows:
 
 8      "171-63  Waiver of restrictions.(a)  Use.  Upon
 
 9 application by the owner and consent therefor having been given
 
10 by each holder of record having a security interest, and after a
 
11 finding that the public interest will be served thereby, the
 
12 board of land and natural resources may amend or waive the
 
13 conditions restricting the use of land contained in any agreement
 
14 of sale, deed, or patent upon the condition that the grantee or
 
15 patentee pay to the board the difference between the fair market
 
16 value of the land based upon its restricted use and the fair
 
17 market value with the restrictive condition amended or waived.
 
18 The foregoing authority granted to the board shall not be
 
19 construed to authorize the board to waive the condition contained
 
20 in any agreement of sale, deed, or patent which provides that
 
21 upon change in use or breach of a condition, the title
 
22 automatically reverts back to the State, or the State shall have
 
23 power of termination.
 

 
Page 3                                         1751        
                                     H.B. NO.           
                                                        
                                                        


 1      (b)  Residential lots.  In case of a residential lot, the
 
 2 board, subject to the consent of each holder of record having a
 
 3 security interest, may waive strict adherence to the use thereof
 
 4 for residential purposes, if the owner or lessee desires to
 
 5 utilize part of the land for agricultural purposes together with
 
 6 the owner's or lessee's residence, provided that the agricultural
 
 7 use is not inconsistent or contrary to local applicable health or
 
 8 zoning ordinances and upon the condition that the grantee or
 
 9 patentee pay to the board the difference between the fair market
 
10 value of the land based upon its restricted use and the fair
 
11 market value with the restrictive condition amended or waived.
 
12 The foregoing authority granted to the board shall not be
 
13 construed to authorize the board to waive the condition contained
 
14 in any agreement of sale, deed, or patent which provides that
 
15 upon change in use or breach of a condition, the title
 
16 automatically reverts back to the State, or the State shall have
 
17 power of termination.  Anything in this chapter to the contrary
 
18 notwithstanding, in case of a residential lot sold in fee simple:
 
19      (1)  All restrictions relating to the use thereof shall
 
20           expire ten years after the date of the issuance of the
 
21           patent or deed by the State or fifteen years after the
 
22           date of the sale by the State, whichever is sooner,
 
23           provided that any change in use of the lot after the
 

 
Page 4                                         1751        
                                     H.B. NO.           
                                                        
                                                        


 1           ten or fifteen years, as the case may be, shall be in
 
 2           accordance with applicable state and county zoning
 
 3           requirements; and
 
 4      (2)  Upon an application signed by all land owners in the
 
 5           subdivision, the board may waive any restrictive
 
 6           covenant upon the land, as long as the waiver shall not
 
 7           cause a violation of any state or county zoning
 
 8           requirements.
 
 9      (c)  Church lots.  In the case of a church lot, the board
 
10 may waive the condition contained in any deed or patent which
 
11 provides that upon a change in use or purpose, or breach of a
 
12 condition, the title automatically reverts back to the State or
 
13 the State shall have the power of termination; provided that the
 
14 grantee or the patentee shall pay to the board the difference
 
15 between the fair market value of the land based on its restricted
 
16 use and the fair market value with the restrictive condition
 
17 amended or waived.  The foregoing authority of the board shall be
 
18 limited to church lots not exceeding one-half acre in size."
 
19      SECTION 3.  New statutory material is underscored.
 
20      SECTION 4.  This Act shall take effect upon its approval.
 
21 
 
22                           INTRODUCED BY:  _______________________