A measure has been introduced in the Hawaii State Legislature to appropriate funds to the Department of Land & Natural Resources towards establishing & maintaining a Community Food Forest program:
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:
SECTION 1. The legislature finds that the number of food stamp recipients in Hawaii has nearly doubled over the last six years. The legislature also acknowledges that Hawaii residents face among the highest costs-of-living in the nation, with the inflation of cost-of-living often outpacing the growth of provisional rates for state welfare.
The legislature further finds that due to the island geography of Hawaii, the long-term sustainability of the State depends upon improved uses of land that has already been developed. The legislature also finds that food production in populated areas may contribute significantly to community sustainability by providing locally-produced healthy food to those who can not otherwise afford it.
Community and urban gardens, concepts which have been adopted statutorily in states like New York, California, Massachusetts, Tennessee, and Maine, may provide a solution to the problem of increasing food costs and the dwindling availability of undeveloped land. By identifying and utilizing public lands, particularly those near existing community gathering places such as parks and community centers, to create community food forests that adopt edible landscaping concepts, the State may be able to provide additional sources of low- or no-cost food to residents, while also utilizing developed land for community sustainability purposes.
Accordingly, the purpose of this Act is to establish a community food forest program and to make an appropriation for this program.
Follow the bill & submit your online testimony to show your support here: