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The Latest: Bill to explore Hawaii ferry system advances - Honolulu, Hawaii news, sports & weather - KITV Channel 4

The Latest: Bill to explore Hawaii ferry system advances

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HONOLULU (AP) -

The Latest on the Hawaii Legislature negotiating dozens of bills before a deadline (all times local):

12:15 p.m.

Hawaii lawmakers want to know what it will take to set up a ferry system on the island state.
    
A legislative committee passed a bill Friday which requires the Department of Transportation to study the feasibility of running ferries between the islands and within individual islands.
    
Under the proposal, the state would contribute $50,000 to the department to get the ball rolling.
    
Rep. Matt LoPresti says a ferry on Oahu could help ease traffic congestion from the island's West side. He says it's incredible that the island state lacks a ferry system.
    
Hawaii lawmakers are facing a major deadline to pass bills out of committees by the end of the day Friday and are negotiating final details on dozens of bills.


10:45 a.m.

Just before the Hawaii Department of Health is set to announce the state's first medical marijuana dispensary owners, a legislative panel approved a bill to clarify gaps in a dispensary law passed last year.

A committee agreed Friday to clear up tax problems and address a shortage of physicians willing to prescribe marijuana. It would also allow for inter-island transport of marijuana for laboratory testing and make rules for types of marijuana products could be sold in dispensaries.

The bill must still be voted on by lawmakers before it can become law.

Under the law passed in 2015, the state will grant eight licenses across the islands. The law allows medical marijuana businesses to have two production centers and two retail dispensaries, for a total of 16 dispensaries statewide.


10:35 a.m.

Law enforcement agencies will be required to test 500 rape evidence kits under a Hawaii bill.

The state will contribute $500,000 to that effort under the bill passed by a legislative committee Friday.

That will help the state chip away at a backlog of untested evidence kits. Like many police departments around the U.S., the Honolulu Police Department has about 1,500 rape kits that haven't been tested.

Democratic Rep. Dee Morikawa says the bill could help the state catch serial rapists.

The bill also will require law enforcement agencies to conduct an inventory of their untested sex assault evidence kits by September 1.

Hawaii lawmakers are facing a major deadline to pass bills out of committees by the end of the day Friday and are negotiating final details on dozens of bills.


9:30 a.m.

Hawaii lawmakers are facing a major deadline and negotiating final details on dozens of bills. Anything that doesn't pass out of committee by the end of the day Friday will die.
    
They're finalizing how to cool the state's overheated classrooms. They're also negotiating whether they'll change the incentives the state offers for rooftop solar and other renewable energy systems.
    
Lawmakers are taking up a bill to create an independent review board to investigate incidents of death that involved an officer.
    
They're also making final decisions on how to set up the state's medical marijuana dispensary system.

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