SB 249, SD2, HD1, Relating to Retirement

The House Committee on Finance
Tuesday, April 4, 2017
2:00 pm, Room 308

Attention: Chair Sylvia Luke, Vice Chair Ty Cullen and
Members of the Committee

The University of Hawaii Professional Assembly (UHPA) opposes SB 249 SD2, HD1.  As with all previous attempts to diminish retirement benefits for judges, UHPA cannot support the erosion of benefits that normally assist in attracting and retaining qualified individuals to serve as judges.

UHPA requests that the Committee oppose SB 249 SD2, HD1.

Respectfully submitted,

Kristeen Hanselman
Executive Director

SB 919, SD1, HD1 RELATING TO PUBLIC EMPLOYMENT COST ITEMS

The House Committee on Finance
Tuesday, April 4, 2017
2:00 pm,  Room 308

Attention: Chair Sylvia Luke, Vice Chair Ty Cullen and
Members of the Committee

The University of Hawaii Professional Assembly (UHPA) urges the committee to support passage of SB 919, SD1, HD1 which is a measure to appropriate funds for fiscal biennium 2017-2019 for salary costs for public employees in collective bargaining unit (7) and for certain employees excluded from collective bargaining.

UHPA urges the committee to support SB 919, SD1, HD1.

Respectfully Submitted,

Kristeen Hanselman
Executive Director

HB 424, HD1, SD1, RELATING TO THE UNIVERSITY OF HAWAII

The Committee on Ways and Means
Tuesday, April 4, 2017
9:35 am, Room 211

Attention: Chair Jill Tokuda, Vice Chair Donovan Dela Cruz and
Members of the Committee

The University of Hawaii Professional Assembly (UHPA) urge the Committee to support HB 424, HD1, SD1, Part I that reinstates the authority and responsibility for all procurement contracts under chapter 103D, Hawaii revised Statutes, to the University President.

The ability of the University to expedite construction needs for repair and maintenance as well as new construction is essential to enhancing instruction and research as well influencing recruitment and retention. The University President should have both the authority and the accountability for procurement.

Part II, Section 5 & 6  speaks to the importance of faculty having direct and viable input into the University.  Our concern relates to the continuing belief that employees must have special policies directed at their participation on the Board of Regents.  Potential Board of Regents are vetted and confirmed by the Senate.  This new language when coupled with current Board of Regent Policies would not achieve the desired results.

UHPA urges the committee to support HB 424, HD1, SD1 Part I while deleting Section 5 (1) & 6 (1) underlined language and (2).

Respectfully Submitted,

Kristeen Hanselman
Executive Director

HB 424, HD1, Proposed SD1 Relating to The University of Hawaii

The Committee on Higher Education and the Arts
And
Committee on Government Operations
Tuesday, March 21, 2017
1:20 pm, Room 414

Attention:  Chairs Kai Kahele and Donna Mercado Kim, Vice Chairs Michelle Kidani and
Russell Ruderman and Members of the Committee

The University of Hawaii Professional Assembly (UHPA) urges the committee to support HB 424, HD1 proposed SD1.  Part I reinstates the authority and responsibility for all procurement contracts under chapter 103D, Hawaii revised Statutes, to the University President.

The ability of the University to expedite construction needs for repair and maintenance as well as new construction is essential to enhancing instruction and research as well influencing recruitment and retention. The University President should have both the authority and the accountability for procurement.

Part II, Section 6 speaks to the importance of faculty having direct and viable input into the “internal organization and management of the university.”  Our concern relates to the university continuing to believe that employees must have special policies directed at their participation on the Board of Regents.  These individuals have already been vetted and confirmed by the Senate.  This should suffice for their participation; they are adults who have been briefed by the Ethics Commission.  There is no need to establish different standards of behaviour than is applied to all members of the Board of Regents. UHPA recognizes the Committee Chair’s desire to ensure that the employee’s voice is heard and acted upon by the Board of Regents.

UHPA urges the committee to support HB 424, HD1 proposed SD1.                                                                     

Respectfully Submitted,

Kristeen Hanselman
Executive Director

SB 410, SD1, HD1, Relating to Collective Bargaining

The House Committee on Finance
Thursday, March 30, 2017
2:00 pm, Room 308

Attention: Chair Sylvia Luke, Vice Chair Ty Cullen and
Members of the Committee

The University of Hawaii Professional Assembly (UHPA) urges the committee to support  SB 410, SD1, HD1 which encourages the parties to a collective bargaining agreement to negotiate in a manner that effectuates the purpose of Chapter 89. Such purpose includes recognizing that public employees have a voice in determining their working conditions. This proposed measure advances the cooperative relations between employers and employees that establishes a healthy collective bargaining environment.

UHPA encourages the Committee to support SB 410, SD1, HD1.

Respectfully Submitted,

Kristeen Hanselman
Executive Director

HB 1182, HD1, SD1, RELATING TO THE EMPLOYEES’ RETIREMENT SYSTEM

The Committee on Ways and Means
Tuesday, March 28, 2017
1:30 pm, Room 211

Attention: Chair Jill Tokuda, Vice Chair Donovan Dela Cruz and
Members of the Committee

The University of Hawaii Professional Assembly (UHPA) continues to request support for the intent of HB 1182, HD1, requiring the Employeesʻ Retirement System (ERS) actuary to perform annual stress tests of the system and the ERS Board to submit annual reports of the tests to the legislature as we previously testified.

Due to market indicators nationally, the ERS Board had previously taken a responsible approach by slowly lowering the assumed rate of return 50 basis points over a five year period. However, the recent decision by the ERS Board to reduce the assumed rate of return 50 basis points all at once has caused a great deal of anxiety for beneficiaries and the public as a whole.  That one action by the ERS Board immediately increased the unfunded liability by $1.7 Billion, and has statutorily forced the legislature to review the required employer contributions.  When actions by the ERS Board have statewide fiscal implications, additional oversight may be required to ensure the beneficiaries have confidence their interests are being addressed.

Requiring the ERS actuary to perform an annual stress test and report its findings to the legislature will provide a level of transparency that is currently not in place and ensure that the decisions of the ERS Board are not made in a vacuum since the decision to reduce the assumed rate has statewide implications.  

UHPA supports the intent of HB 1182, HD1.

Respectfully submitted,

Kristeen Hanselman
Executive Director

HB 847, HD1 RELATING TO UNIVERSITY OF HAWAII RESEARCH

The Senate Committee on Judiciary and Labor
And
The Senate Committee on Ways and Means
Thursday, March 30, 2017
9:50 am, Room 211

Attention: Chairs Gilbert Keith-Agaran and Jill Tokuda, Vice Chairs Karl Rhoads and
Donovan Dela Cruz and Members of the respective Committees

The University of Hawaii Professional Assembly (UHPA) supports HB 847, HD1. The purpose of this bill is to codify through placement into statute, that which is currently an Ethics Code Advisory Opinion (No. 1992-2) that allows faculty members to advance technology transfer activities at the University of Hawai‘i without penalties for commercializing their work which financially benefits the University. UHPA believes this proposed legislation will make it clear that technology transfer is recognized appropriately in state law.

HB 847, HD1 would ensure the long-standing ethical research principles and technology transfer regulations currently used by the federal government.  This also supports the ability of the University to be competitive for external research funding and attracting and retaining innovative faculty.

This benefits both the State and the University by removing current uncertainties surrounding the Advisory Opinion.  HB 847, HD1 provides an effective and efficient transfer of the results of research in a collaborative manner.

UHPA supports the passage of HB 847, HD1.

Respectfully submitted

Kristeen Hanselman
Executive Director

HB 810, HD1, SD1 Relating to Collective Bargaining

The Committee on Ways and Means
Tuesday, March 28, 2017
1:30 pm, Room 211

Attention:    Chair Jill Tokuda, Vice Chair Donovan Dela Cruz and
Members of the Committee

The University of Hawaii Professional Assembly (UHPA) urges the committee to support the passage of the HB 810, HD1 version of the measure.  The Senate Draft 1 version of the measure removed the appropriate remedy for Bargaining Units 01, 05 and 07 for conflict resolution, since these bargaining units are not subject to binding arbitration.  

Chapter 89-9, Hawaii Revised Statutes, outlines the scope of negotiations and consultation and Chapter 89-11, Hawaii Revised Statutes, outlines the resolution of disputes and impasse procedures between the exclusive representative and the employer.  The amendments to these respective sections outlined in HB 810 HD1 will provide the appropriate pathway for all bargaining units to resolve disputes between the exclusive representative and the employer regarding contributions to the Hawaii Employer-Union Health Benefits Trust Fund (EUTF).   

UHPA urges the committee to support passage of the HB 810, HD1 version.

Respectfully Submitted,

Kristeen Hanselman
Executive Director

SB 137, SD2, HD1, RELATING TO UNIVERSITY OF HAWAII RESEARCH

To The House Committee on Judiciary
Wednesday, March 22, 2017
2:00 pm, Room 325

Attention: Chair Scott Nishimoto, Vice Chair Joy San Buenaventura and
Members of the Committee

The University of Hawaii Professional Assembly (UHPA) urges the committee to support  SB 137, SD2, HD1. The intent of this bill is to codify what is currently an Ethics Code Advisory Opinion (No. 1992-2) that allows faculty members to advance technology transfer activities at the University of Hawai‘i without penalties for commercializing their work which financially benefits the University.

The ability of faculty to work closely with students provides unique opportunities for mentoring, guiding and developing innovative and creative property that have the potential for commercialization. Revisions to the Code of Ethics enhances this potential.

SB 137, SD1, HD1 would ensure the long-standing ethical research principles and technology transfer regulations currently used by the federal government.  This also supports the ability of the University to be competitive for external research funding and attracting and retaining innovative faculty.

This benefits both the State and the University by removing current uncertainties surrounding the Advisory Opinion.  SB 137, SD2, HD1 provides an effective and efficient transfer of the results of research in a collaborative manner.

UHPA supports the passage of SB 137, SD2.

Respectfully submitted

Kristeen Hanselman
Executive Director

SB 137, SD2, RELATING TO UNIVERSITY OF HAWAII RESEARCH

The House Committee on Higher Education
Tuesday, March 14, 2017
2:00 pm, Room 309

Attention: Chair Justin Woodson and Vice Chair Mark Hashem, Members of the Committee

The University of Hawaii Professional Assembly (UHPA) supports of SB 137, SD2, The intent of this bill is to codify what is currently an Ethics Code Advisory Opinion (No. 1992-2) that allows faculty members to advance technology transfer activities at the University of Hawai‘i without penalties for commercializing their work which financially benefits the University.

The ability of faculty to work closely with students provides unique opportunities for mentoring, guiding and developing innovative and creative property that have the potential for commercialization. Revisions to the Code of Ethics enhances this potential.

SB 137, SD1 would ensure the long-standing ethical research principles and technology transfer regulations currently used by the federal government.  This also supports the ability of the University to be competitive for external research funding and attracting and retaining innovative faculty.

This benefits both the State and the University by removing current uncertainties surrounding the Advisory Opinion.  SB 137, SD2 provides an effective and efficient transfer of the results of research in a collaborative manner.

UHPA supports the passage of SB 137, SD2.

Respectfully submitted

Kristeen Hanselman
Executive Director