Political Radar


February 26th, 2013

The internal maneuvering in the state Senate over the creation of a new Public-Private Partnership Authority may come into public view at a hearing on Friday morning.

The bill, sponsored by Sen. Donovan Dela Cruz, would establish a new authority but test the concept on a mainstream redevelopment project in Wahiawa and a potential film production studio on Maui. The bill would also rescue the stadium authority special fund, which is at risk because it was attached to the law creating the Public Land Development Corp. which lawmakers are moving to repeal.

Critics have complained that the Public-Private Partnership Authority is too close to the PLDC in concept, even though it would not have the same land use exemptions.

Dela Cruz, who was also behind the PLDC, moved the PPPA through his Senate Economic Development, Government Operations and Housing Committee earlier this month and the bill was headed to the Senate Ways and Means Committee.

But Senate President Donna Mercado Kim stepped in and had the bill re-referred to the Senate Education Committee and the Senate Higher Education Committee in addition to Ways and Means, a triple referral that often is the mark of death.

The three committees have scheduled a joint hearing for Friday to decide whether to move Dela Cruz's bill.

*Update: The bill was re-referred again, this time dropping the Senate Higher Education Committee.

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