Gov. Neil Abercrombie signed many bills into law Monday, but a new financial disclosure bill was not be one of them.
He says he will allow Senate Bill 2682 bill to become law without his signature after initially placing it on his list of bills to veto.
The bill requires financial disclosure statements by members of the 15 state boards and commissions, including the Hawaii Board of Regents and Public Utilities Commission.
Former Board of Regents members John C. Dean and Saedene Ota submitted resignation letters to Abercrombie following state lawmakers vote and cited the bill.
Abercrombie sent a letter Monday to Senate President Donna Mercado Kim and House Speaker Joe Souki to reveal his intentions.
In the letter, Gov. Abercrombie stated:
"There are tough issues to be considered in this bill with competing values: Legitimate inquiry into possible conflicts regarding the public interest versus legitimate concerns about personal information on family, finances, credit history and medical records becoming cannon fodder in political battles."
"It seems reasonable in these circumstances then, to allow this bill to become law with the object of reviewing the disclosure documents to determine what information serves the public interest, what limitations are relevant and most importantly, what constitutes conflict."
Sen. David Ige also released a statement regarding the bill:
“The passage of the financial disclosure bill, SB 2682, is a great day for openness and transparency in Hawaii’s government."
"This legislation is in the best interest of the public for all citizens, ensuring there are no real or perceived conflicts of interest by members of our community who come forward to serve on certain public boards and commissions. We need people in government who are willing to be forthcoming and transparent.”