HNG Youth Challenge Program

Appropriates to the Department of Defense funds to match federal
funds for the Hawaii National Guard Youth Challenge Program for
the 1999-2001 fiscal biennium.  (SD1)

THE SENATE                              S.B. NO.           S.D. 1
TWENTIETH LEGISLATURE, 1999                                
STATE OF HAWAII                                            

                   A  BILL  FOR  AN  ACT



 1      SECTION 1.  The legislature finds that in 1993, the U.S.
 2 Congress provided funding for the national guard to conduct a
 3 pilot youth intervention program.  Hawaii was selected as one of
 4 fifteen pilot states.  Under the leadership of the adjutant
 5 general, the state department of defense established the "Hawaii
 6 National Guard Youth Challenge Program" at Bellows Air Force
 7 Station in 1994.  It presently operates at Barbers Point Naval
 8 Air Station.
 9      The program provides sixteen- to eighteen-year old youths
10 who are considered "at-risk" with a second chance to obtain their
11 high school diploma and become productive citizens.  The
12 alternative learning program is equipped to provide alternate
13 educational opportunities for at-risk youths.
14      The Hawaii national guard youth challenge program, through
15 its basic skills schooling, teaching of community values, career
16 exploration and employment opportunities, and mentorships that
17 encourage active monitoring of progress after completion of the
18 program, has successfully helped 269 youths earn diplomas between
19 1995 to 1997.  This program provides positive alternatives for

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 1 at-risk youths and has proven to successfully prevent one-time
 2 at-risk youths from ending up in drug court or leading a life of
 3 crime.
 4      In 1997, the Hawaii national guard youth challenge program
 5 received the USO national guard youth challenge program
 6 educational excellence award, distinguishing it as the best
 7 program among fourteen other programs in the nation.  In 1996,
 8 Hawaii's program was honored with the federal organization
 9 excellence award for the pacific region.  The department of
10 defense's records show that there are no other successful
11 voluntary twenty-two week residential programs in Hawaii for
12 sixteen- to eighteen-year old youths considered to be "at risk."
13      The legislature also finds that in 1996, legislation was
14 passed to lower the age of compulsory school attendance in Hawaii
15 from eighteen to sixteen; provided that the principal determines
16 that the child's attendance is disruptive or hinders the child's
17 learning, and that an alternative educational plan is developed
18 for the child.  School principals, in consultation with school
19 personnel, the child, and the child's parent or guardian, need to
20 collaborate in order to determine the best possible alternative
21 educational plan for a child who may not be able to learn within
22 the traditional school environment.  Further, as part of this
23 collaborative effort, the child and the child's parent or

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                                     S.B. NO.           S.D. 1

 1 guardian must be given a reasonable opportunity to participate in
 2 the development of any alternative educational plan, in order to
 3 assure the child's and parent's or guardian's commitment to and
 4 successful implementation of the plan.  The Hawaii national guard
 5 youth challenge program has proven to be an excellent and
 6 effective option for alternative education.  The legislature
 7 believes that collaboration among departments and agencies that
 8 provide services and programs for at-risk youth such as the
 9 Hawaii national guard youth challenge program, result in optimal
10 educational and vocational opportunities and hope for the future
11 of our children.
12      In 1998, the U.S. Congress established a permanent youth
13 challenge program within the national guard due to the success of
14 the Hawaii national guard youth challenge program, and the other
15 fourteen pilot programs.  The federal government has committed
16 federal funds each year to the Hawaii program through fiscal year
17 2001-2002; provided that the State match a percentage of these
18 funds.  The percentage breakdown for the state funding is as
19 follows:
20      (1)  Fiscal year 1998-1999 at twenty-five per cent;
21      (2)  Fiscal year 1999-2000 at thirty per cent;
22      (3)  Fiscal year 2000-2001 at thirty-five per cent; and
23      (4)  Fiscal year 2001-2002 at forty per cent.

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                                     S.B. NO.           S.D. 1

 1      Based on the federal committed funds, the State must
 2 appropriate $937,200 for fiscal year 1999-2000, and $1,093,400
 3 for fiscal year 2000-2001.  
 4      The legislature now finds that this valuable program needs
 5 to be funded for the 1999-2001 fiscal biennium, to ensure that
 6 the state funds match the federal funds offered to the program.  
 7      The purpose of this Act is to appropriate the state
 8 percentage of matching funds to support the maintenance and
 9 operation of the Hawaii national guard youth challenge program.
10 The funds shall be appropriated directly to the department of
11 defense, as it is the lead agency in administrating this program.
12      SECTION 2.  There is appropriated out of the general
13 revenues of the State of Hawaii the sum of $937,200, or so much
14 thereof as may be necessary for fiscal year 1999-2000, and
15 $1,093,400, or so much thereof as may be necessary for fiscal
16 year 2000-2001, to match federal funds to finance the operations
17 of the Hawaii national guard youth challenge program.
18      SECTION 3.  The sums appropriated shall be expended by the
19 department of defense for the purposes of this Act.
20      SECTION 4.  This Act shall take effect on July 1, 1999.