Representative Kahele offers long term rental for beneficiaries and successors of Hawaiian Homes


July 14, 2021, 7:56 a.m. HST
* Updated July 14 at 8:09 am

Courtesy of: Kai Kahele

Congressman Kaialiʻi Kahele announced the introduction of the Prince Jonah Kūhiō Kalanianaʻole Family Inheritance Protection Act, bipartisan legislation that guarantees long-term tenancy to beneficiaries of the Hawaiian House Commissions Act and of their successors.

HJ Res. 55, reduces the estate qualification of a tenant’s spouse, children, grandchildren and siblings from a quarter to a thirty-second Hawaiian.

“I want to do all I can to help future generations of Native Hawaiians benefit from the original intent of the Hawaiian Houses Commission Act to return Native Hawaiians to their lands with prompt and effective placement.” in order to support self-sufficiency. and self-determination. Prince Jonah KÅ«hiō KalanianaÊ»ole’s Family Inheritance Protection Act accomplishes this by securing a long-term lease to beneficiaries and their successors, ”said Congressman KaialiÊ»i Kahele, HI-02. “My legislation advances the original project, vision and intention of Prince Jonah KÅ«hiō KalanianaÊ»ole who championed the Hawaiian House Commission Act, legislation he fought to pass in Congress as a delegate without the right to vote. “

The Hawaii State Legislature passed this amendment in 2017, and it was signed by the Governor of Hawaii as Bill 80 in the same year. This action has been deliberate by HHCA beneficiaries and homestead associations for many years and deemed necessary as many descendants of HHCA beneficiaries are currently facing the displacement and loss of their ancestral homes.

Prince Jonah Kūhiō Kalanianaʻole Protecting Family Legacies Act is co-sponsored by: Representatives Don Young (R-AK), Ed Case (D-HI), Sharice L. Davids (D-KS), Tom Cole (R-OK), Teresa Leger -Fernandez (D-NM), Doug LaMalfa (R-CA), David P. Joyce (D-OH), Frank Pallone (D-NJ), Aumua Almata Coleman Radewagen (R-AS), Gregoria Sablan (D- MP) and Michael FQ San Nicolas (D-GU).

Prince Kūhiō. PC: Hawaii State Archives

About the Law on the Protection of the Family Inheritance of Prince Jonah Kūhiō Kalanianaʻole

  • For the State of Hawaii to make substantial changes to the HHCA, the consent of the United States of America is required.
  • Several similar resolutions have been passed by Congress – all with unanimous or near unanimous support:
    • Pub. L. 99-557 – adopted by vote and adopted in the Senate by vote
    • Pub. L. 102-398 – adopted by the Senate by vote and adopted by the House by vote
    • Pub. L. 105-21 – adopted by vote by the House and adopted by the Senate unanimously
  • The HHCA defines Native Hawaiians as individuals who are at least half Hawaiian. This requirement was in place for original tenants and their successors until 1986 when an amendment was enacted by the Hawaii State Legislature and approved by Congress that reduced the estate qualification to one quarter. Hawaiian for a tenant’s spouses and children.

About act 80

  • In 2017, the Hawaii State Legislature enacted Bill 80 which amends the HHCA by reducing the estate qualification of a tenant’s spouse, children, grandchildren and siblings by a quarter to a thirty-second Hawaiian.
  • The legislature has recognized that the current blood quantity requirement for successors creates undue hardship for beneficiaries and interferes with families’ ability to maintain equity in their homes.
  • The amendment ensures cultural continuity and economic security by removing uncertainty and instability, perpetuating the HHCA’s intention of securing long-term tenancy to beneficiaries of this law and their successors.
  • This bill will maintain stability for tenants of family properties and ensure that families are not displaced from their ancestral homes.

About the HHCA

  • The HHCA was passed by Congress and proclaimed into law by President Warren G. Harding on July 9, 1921.
  • The HHCA established a federal land trust of approximately 200,000 acres to create a permanent homeland for native Hawaiians, to build homes, farms, ranches, and otherwise engage in commercial, industrial, or economic activities.

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