Open Data Bills: SB448 & HB632

We are in the new 2013 legislative session and there are a number of bills we are following. Two in particular are the open data bills, SB448 and HB632. The Senate version SB448, is being introduced by Sen. Glenn Wakai, Chair of the Technology and the Arts (TEC) Committee. In the House of Representatives, Rep. Clift Tsuji is introducing the HB632 bill. He is Chair of the Economic Development and Business (EDB) Committee.

Once the bills get introduced, they get schedule for hearings by the appropriate committees. On the Senate side SB448 got referred to the TEC and JDL committee. It has since been scheduled to be heard by the TEC committee on Feb 5, 2013. It has yet to be scheduled for the JDL.

On the House side, HB632 was referred to the Consumer Protection and Commerce (CPC) Committee and the Judiciary Committee (JUD). HB632 got scheduled to be heard on Wed. Jan 30, 2013 and is yet to be scheduled to be heard by the JUD committee.

The amazing thing is the CPC Committee is hearing 28 bills on Jan 30th. HB632 is number 19 on the list. For anyone interested in testifying in person you need to devote a lot of time to wait for the legislators to wade through all the bills on the table. It’s not for the feint of heart. Luckily you can also submit testimony online which is conveniently enabled on each of the bill pages. But testifying in person is quite an experience.

To be perfectly honest, just writing this post has helped me understand the intricacies of getting a bill introduced to the legislative process. As an open data wonk I am interested in this process but I am an admitted novice and we are only at the very beginning. I hope the bill gets through the initial hearings. No matter how much you believe in a bill, there is no guarantee it will ever get the to the Governor’s desk. That is the long road and I hope to bring you impression of the journey here.


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