Lawmakers sent these noteworthy bills to Gov. David Ige for consideration
Dozens of bills passed their final reading Tuesday at the state Legislature, including the state budget.
HB 1600 passed unanimously in both chambers, approving an operating budget of $8.7 billion and about $6 billion in capital improvement projects. Fiscal year 2023 starts July 1.
This year's budget is a record, and comes after state tax collections exceeded expectations as many local businesses saw increased activity as parts of the economy recovered quickly from pandemic lows.
Several other measures concerning minimum wage, menstrual products in schools, Maunakea, and vaping also passed the Legislature.
HB 2510 would incrementally hike the state's minimum wage to $18 an hour by 2028 from the current $10.10.
If signed, the bill will raise the rate in increments over the next several years, starting with $12 on Oct. 1, then $14 in 2024, $16 in 2026, and finally $18 in 2028.
SB 2821 would allocate $2 million in state funding to provide free menstrual products at public schools. The bill requires all public and charter schools to provide menstrual products free of charge to students.
Lawmakers also worked out their differences on a bill that would create a new management authority for Maunakea, the site of some of the world's most advanced telescopes and demonstrations against the construction of a new observatory.
HB 2024 establishes a new 11-member oversight authority and aims to give Native Hawaiians a role in managing it while allowing astronomy research to continue. The University of Hawaiʻi currently manages Maunakea's summit lands.
HB 1570 would have banned all flavored tobacco products, including menthol, to combat youth vaping in the state. But amendments allowed products authorized for sale by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. That would exempt more than 1,000 tobacco products.
Those are just some of the approved bills that will now go to Gov. David Ige for consideration; you can find a full list here. More information on bills and lists that made it through this year's legislative session can be found at this link.