(BIVN) – Congressman Kaialiʻi Kahele on Tuesday testified on his proposed Prince Jonah Kūhiō Kalanianaʻole Protecting Family Legacies Act.
Kahele spoke during a virtual, legislative hearing before the House Natural Resources Committee’s Subcommittee for Indigenous Peoples of the United States. The subcommittee heard several Tribal and Native Hawaiian bills during the meeting.
The legislation ensures long-term tenancy to beneficiaries of the Hawaiian Homes Commission Act and their successors, Kahele says, by reducing the successorship qualification of a lessee’s spouse, children, grandchildren and brothers or sisters from one quarter to one thirty-second Hawaiian. Hawaiian Homes Commission Chairman Aila also spoke at the meeting.
UPDATE – A news release was shared by the office of Congressman Kahele following the hearing.
“Today’s Subcommittee hearing advances Prince Jonah Kūhiō Kalanianaʻole’s 100-year vision one step closer to reality,” said Congressman Kahele. “Native Hawaiians have a right to return to their lands to realize their own self-sufficiency and self-determination. The Prince Jonah Kūhiō Kalanianaʻole Protecting Family Legacies Act would provide cultural continuity and economic stability for generations of Native Hawaiian families. I extend my sincere mahalo to Subcommittee Chair Teresa Leger Fernández and Chair Raúl Grijalva for bringing this crucial legislation for Native Hawaiians to the attention of the Committee.”
“At today’s hearing, Rep. Kahele and Chairman Aila presented compelling testimony about the importance of enacting the Family Legacies Act so that Native Hawaiian families are able to access and pass on their homes and homeland to their children and grandchildren – their ‘ohana,” said Subcommittee Chair Leger Fernández. “As Subcommittee Chair and co-sponsor of this legislation, I visited Hawaiian homelands and heard first hand from Native Hawaiians of the importance of this bill. I’m committed to working with Rep. Kahele and Chair Grijalva to ensure Native Hawaiians families benefit from the Hawaiian Homes Commissions Act.”
“Today we have an opportunity and responsibility to continue familial connections not only to family members but also future descendants to the ʻāina (ancestral lands),” said Chairman Aila.