63
THE SENATE                           S.C.R. NO.            
TWENTIETH LEGISLATURE, 2000                                
STATE OF HAWAII                                            
                                                             
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                    SENATE  CONCURRENT
                        RESOLUTION
  REQUESTING THE LEGISLATIVE REFERENCE BUREAU TO DETERMINE THE
    LIKELY SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC IMPACTS OF SITING A PRISON
    FACILITY ON THE ISLAND OF HAWAII.



 1        WHEREAS, correctional facilities planning in Hawaii has
 2   been repeatedly and effectively stymied by community resistance
 3   and legislative inaction.  This resistance and inaction are
 4   understandable because the siting of prisons next to existing
 5   neighborhoods is associated with only negative social and
 6   economic impacts--never positive benefits; and
 7   
 8        WHEREAS, efforts to relocate the Oahu Community
 9   Correctional Center or OCCC, formerly Hawaii State Prison and
10   before that Oahu Prison, to a more appropriate site were
11   repeatedly rejected by the Legislature during the 1960's.  As a
12   result, OCCC sits in roughly the same location that it did more
13   than one hundred years ago--right in the middle of Iwilei; and
14   
15        WHEREAS, the difficulties of siting and building new
16   correctional facilities are clear--no one wants a prison with
17   violent criminals built in their backyard.  Consequently, the
18   renovation and expansion of existing facilities was the primary
19   means of adding new bed spaces to the Hawaii prison system for
20   many years; and
21   
22        WHEREAS, there is a finite physical limit to the expansion
23   of existing facilities.  In recent years, only one large
24   correctional facility was built completely offsite of an
25   existing facility:  Waiawa correctional facility, which is
26   prevented from housing sex offenders by agreement with the
27   surrounding communities; and
28   
29        WHEREAS, only a community that is informed and that
30   understands the likely social and economic impacts of building
31   a prison in its backyard can enter into good faith negotiations
32   with the State to effectively mitigate any negative impacts
33   and, when necessary, to fairly compensate the community for any
34   negative impacts that cannot be adequately mitigated; and
35   

 
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 1        WHEREAS, communities make more willing partners when they
 2   are treated as equals and when projects such as a correctional
 3   facility are planned from the beginning with them rather than
 4   imposed at the end upon them.  Part of being treated as an
 5   equal involves being informed about the likely social and
 6   economic impacts of building a prison in the neighborhood; and
 7   
 8        WHEREAS, if a facility is to be built in Hawaii County,
 9   the trust and cooperation of the Big Island community is needed
10   to produce a win-win situation for a state which desperately
11   needs to alleviate prison overcrowding; now, therefore,
12   
13        BE IT RESOLVED by the Senate of the Twentieth Legislature
14   of the State of Hawaii, Regular Session of 2000, the House of
15   Representatives concurring, that the Legislative Reference
16   Bureau is requested to conduct a study to determine the likely
17   social and economic impacts of siting a prison facility on the
18   island of Hawaii, using specific locations identified by the
19   Department of Public Safety; and
20   
21        BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Bureau is also requested
22   to summarize any reliable literature documenting the social and
23   economic impacts of siting prison facilities near existing
24   communities throughout the continental United States; and
25   
26        BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Bureau is requested to
27   submit its findings to the Legislature not less than twenty
28   days prior to the convening of the Regular Session of 2001; and
29   
30        BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that certified copies of this
31   Concurrent Resolution be transmitted to the Director of the
32   Legislative Reference Bureau, the Director of the Department of
33   Public Safety, the Mayor of the County of Hawaii, and the
34   Chairperson of the Hawaii County Council.
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38                         OFFERED BY:  ____________________________