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SB 2399, Relating to the Research Corporation of The University of Hawai‘i

The Committee on Government Operations
The Committee on Higher Education and the Arts
Tuesday, February 16, 2016
2:15 p.m., Room 414
RE: SB 2399, Relating to the Research Corporation of The University of Hawai‘i

 Attention: Chairs Donna Kim and Brian Taniguchi,
Vice Chairs Les Ihara and Lorraine Inouye and Members of the Committees

The University of Hawaii Professional Assembly (UHPA) strongly urges both committees to oppose SB 2399. This bill would deliver two devastating blows to the State of Hawai‘i.

First, it would require the Governor’s office to create an administrative department for the sole purpose of project review. The department would need to develop an appropriate rubric to be used to analyze project submissions; specific to the purpose and intent of each required hire.

Second, the astronomical impact this would effectuate on faculty to accomplish research projects is insurmountable. The time constraints alone would be detrimental to many research projects. The revenue stream that is generated through grants and other funding sources for many of the research projects is also severely diminished and should be taken into consideration. Finally, there is an adverse effect on retention of highly skilled research faculty and the ability to recruit quality faculty. When an academic void is created it may be difficult to recapture.

These two reasons suggest that perhaps the Governor is not the appropriate person to approve “request for, amendment to, or supplement to research corporation services for a project” as stated as an amendment to Chapter 76, Hawai‘i Revised Statutes.

UHPA strongly urges both committee’s to oppose SB 2399.
Respectfully submitted,

Kristeen Hanselman                                                                                                                                                           Executive Director