Category Archives: General Excise (HRS 237)

SB 1474, SD-1

SUBJECT:  GENERAL EXCISE, USE, Increase Tax Rate, Give to Education

BILL NUMBER:  SB 1474, SD-1

INTRODUCED BY:  Senate Committees on Education and Higher Education

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY:  Increases the general excise and use taxes by 0.5% and provides that the revenue generated by the increased rate will be used for department of education (DOE) and University of Hawaii (UH) operations, including salaries and maintenance costs.  With a tax increase of this magnitude, economic ripple effects are likely to be enormous because of the all-encompassing nature of the tax.  We also question why such a massive increase is being sought given that DOE and UH already have a gargantuan share of the State budget but are still beset with such issues as frustrated teachers, students roasting in our classrooms, and a massive maintenance backlog.  It also should be kept in mind that the bill does not ensure that increased funding will be made available for DOE or UH, as the case may be.

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SB 1292, SD-1

SUBJECT:  GENERAL EXCISE, TRANSIENT ACCOMMODATIONS, Transient Accommodations Brokers as Tax Collection Agents

BILL NUMBER:  SB 1292, SD-1

INTRODUCED BY:  Senate Committees on Energy, Economic Development, and Tourism and Commerce, Consumer Protection, and Health

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY:  Allows a transient accommodations broker to serve as a collection agent for general excise and transient accommodations taxes.  This type of arrangement would probably enhance collection of taxes because of the difficulty of policing individual owners.  However, the number of caveats, conditions, and restrictions that are placed on the broker signing up for this program is so large that it is unlikely that any broker in its right mind would sign up.  If no broker is motivated to sign up, this legislation will accomplish nothing.

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HB 1394; SB 1428 (Identical)

SUBJECT:  GENERAL EXCISE, Expand Permitted Usage on Neighbor Islands of County Surcharge

BILL NUMBER:  HB 1394; SB 1428 (Identical)

INTRODUCED BY:  HB by NAKAMURA, CREAGAN, MORIKAWA, NAKASHIMA, TARNAS, TODD, TOKIOKA, WILDBERGER; SB by KOUCHI by request

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY:  Authorizes any county with a population equal to or less than 500,000 that adopts a county surcharge on state tax ordinance to use the surcharges received from the State for infrastructure and public safety.  This bill will send us far afield from the original intent and philosophy of the county surcharge, which was a temporary tax to fund mass transportation.

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HB 632; HD-1

SUBJECT:  GENERAL EXCISE, Exempt Mobility Enhancing and Durable Medical Equipment

BILL NUMBER:  HB 632; HD-1

INTRODUCED BY:  House Committee on Health

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY:  Expands the current exemption for prescription drugs and prosthetic devices to include more items specific to health care.  The expanded list of items appears to be consistent with the policy justification for the original exemption.  In addition, some of the changes in this bill would rectify an anomaly that exists under current law.  Note that this draft of the bill is intended to result in medical marijuana being exempt.

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HB 616, HD-1

SUBJECT:  GENERAL EXCISE, Exemption for Locally Grown Food

BILL NUMBER:  HB 616, HD-1

INTRODUCED BY:  House Committees on Agriculture and Economic Development & Business

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY:  Exempts sales of locally grown food from GET.  Such an exemption violates the federal Commerce Clause and cannot be given effect, as held in In re Hawaiian Flour Mills, Inc., 76 Hawai’i 1, 868 P.2d 419 (1994).

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HB 523

SUBJECT:  GENERAL EXCISE, Exempt Mobility Enhancing and Durable Medical Equipment

BILL NUMBER:  HB 523

INTRODUCED BY:  TOKIOKA, CREAGAN, DECOITE, HAR, KONG, NISHIMOTO, OKIMOTO, SAY, TAKAYAMA, YAMANE

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY:  Expands the current exemption for prescription drugs and prosthetic devices to include more items specific to health care.  The expanded list of items appears to be consistent with the policy justification for the original exemption.  In addition, some of the changes in this bill would rectify an anomaly that exists under current law.

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HB 632; SB 332 (Identical)

SUBJECT:  GENERAL EXCISE, Exempt Mobility Enhancing and Durable Medical Equipment

BILL NUMBER:  HB 632; SB 332 (Identical)

INTRODUCED BY:  HB by LUKE; SB by K. RHOADS, HARIMOTO, Ruderman

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY:  Expands the current exemption for prescription drugs and prosthetic devices to include more items specific to health care.  The expanded list of items appears to be consistent with the policy justification for the original exemption.  In addition, some of the changes in this bill would rectify an anomaly that exists under current law.  Note that this draft of the bill could result in medical marijuana being exempt.

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SB 530, SD-1

SUBJECT:  GENERAL EXCISE, Exempt mobility enhancing and durable medical equipment

BILL NUMBER:  SB 530, SD-1

INTRODUCED BY:  Senate Committee on Commerce, Consumer Protection, and Health

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY:  Expands the current exemption for prescription drugs and prosthetic devices to include more items specific to health care.  The expanded list of items appears to be consistent with the policy justification for the original exemption.  In addition, some of the changes in this bill would rectify an anomaly that exists under current law.

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