Lawmakers push forward election reforms

Published  5:40 PM HST Mar 12, 2013
Voting booth

Hawaii lawmakers are moving forward bills intended to decrease the influence of private money on state elections.

The House judiciary committee on Tuesday approved two bills reforming campaign finance reporting requirements.  Members also voted for a bill to adjust a Big Island pilot project for publicly funded campaigns to increase its appeal.

The committee's Senate counterpart may also hear a proposal to create a comprehensive public funding program for state legislative races.  The Senate judiciary committee hasn't yet set a date to review the bill.  The House approved the initiative last week.

Between 1994 and 2012, total state Senate candidate spending more than doubled.

Hawaii already has a partial public funding program but just two legislative candidates participated in the program during the 2012 general election.  Only one was successful.

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