Keeping Up With Legislative Bills, Hearings In 2015

Sen. Michelle Kidani

Sen. Michelle Kidani

Aloha! Let me wish you, your family and friends the happiest of holidays. My hope is that you have enjoyed good health and happiness in the past year, and that 2015 will bring blessings to fill the new year with great opportunities.

At the State Capitol, we begin 2015 with new lead ership as Gov. David Ige shapes his administration. In his inaugural address earlier this month, the governor pointed out that opportunities to improve our economy, the environment and our education system will require hard work and cooperative efforts to ensure state government uses our resources to further the well-being of all of us.

Lawmakers are committed to the “heavy lifting” (the governor’s words) to make sure that we all are working on your behalf in crafting the state’s spending plan for the next two-year budget cycle.

The Legislature will convene Jan. 21. Our opening-day program is a great opportunity to stop by lawmakers’ offices to “meet and greet.” My office remains in Room 228 on the second floor — see you at the Capitol!

Here’s a reminder that there are several ways you can follow our work and track specific issues that may be of interest to you.

The Legislature’s online site has a great search function, where you can find bills and resolutions, review hearing notices and even submit testimony on bills by email directly to committees. The site has won awards for being comprehensive and easy to use; you’re welcome to check it out at

Many hearings are covered on Olelo’s community access channels through Capitol TV. You can watch on television or through live streaming on your computer or mobile device. For scheduled hearings, log on to

And if you need assistance in learning about the legislative process and how you can have a say in our deliberations, the Legislature’s Public Access Room

— Room 401 on the fourth floor of the Capitol — has a great staff and many resources to help you get acquainted with issues as they are debated. Use these resources online at, call them at 587-0478, or stop by to chat with the helpful and knowledgeable staff.

I began with a reference to the holidays and the new year, and in mid-February we will celebrate the arrival of the Year of the Ram — or, as some call it, the Year of the Sheep or Goat — in the ancient Chinese lunar calendar. In reading about the Year of the Ram, I was struck by the optimistic

tone for the year before us.

Traditions speak of favorable changes and a period of well-being in the upcoming year, with a newly gained faith in stable economic growth. All of this should be assured, the ancients say, with diligence applied to hard work to ensure prosperity. Sounds like a great way to move forward in 2015.

Contact Sen. Michelle Kidani at the State Capitol, Room 228; call 586-7100, or email