Hawaii Legislature Adjourns

The Hawaii legislature failed to pass legislation impacting automobile owners in 2023 prior to the adjournment of the session. To follow is a brief summary:

  • SAN-opposed legislation (S.B. 586 / S.B. 587) to reform enforcement of the state’s exhaust noise laws died, which would have unfairly toughened exhaust noise penalties. Special thanks to those who participated in this win!
    • However, additional SAN-opposed legislation (S.B. 588) to develop a pilot program for testing noise cameras to ticket loud cars and trucks was signed into law by Governor Josh Green. However, the underlying laws are fundamentally flawed. Currently, Hawaii prohibits mufflers that “noticeably increase the noise” and mandates that mufflers must be identical to their factory setting. The current law is unenforceable as it is vague, subjective, and unfair.
  • SAN-supported legislation (H.B. 480) to allow the titling and registration of special interest vehicles that are at least thirty-five years old or modified to resemble a vehicle that is at least thirty-five years old. Currently, the term “special interest vehicles" includes a street rod vehicle and a street rod replica vehicle, which were manufactured before 1968 or manufactured after 1967 to resemble a vehicle manufactured before 1968. The bill amends these definitions to be based on the age of the vehicle or the parts used, rather than a certain year. Such vehicles would be required to meet the safety standards that were in effect at the time of manufacture. The bill passed the House but was not considered by the Senate Committee on Judiciary prior to adjournment.
  • SAN-supported legislation (S.B. 315) has been introduced in Hawaii to allow for the titling and registration of former military vehicles as special interest vehicles. Currently, former military vehicles are not allowed to be registered or titled for on-road use in the state. Similar legislative proposals have failed to be approved in prior years—most recently in 2019, when a bill was vetoed by Governor David Ige despite passing the legislature. The bill passed the Senate Committee on Transportation and Culture and the Arts but was not considered by the Senate Committee on Judiciary prior to adjournment.

Thank you to everyone who contacted lawmakers about these efforts.