HB563 – Letter from Bill Comerford

Dear HIBOA Member,

Consider submitting testimony on this issue at http://www.capitol.hawaii.gov/emailtestimony/

Bill Comerford Bill Comerford,
Hawaii Bar Owners Association
10 Marin Lane
Honolulu, HI 96813
(808) 223-3997

Testimony in opposition to HB563 in its current form.

From the Hawaii Bar Owners Association

As responsible Bar Owners in the State of Hawaii, we generally respect this bill and do not find real fault in its text or intention.

It should eliminate those who are incapable or irresponsible from avoiding insurance. However, as businessmen who operate under costs, we do suggest that the Legislature determine $1,000,000 as the minimum amount by law, agreeing that it is the standard amount within the industry.

That should be stated in the law and not left to the in-determinant rules and the whims of varied county Liquor Commissions. The amount should remain a minimum guarantee of insurability and not a compulsory rate adjustment applied by commission rule and not law.

Counties could see huge variances with the demands of different County Commissions. The impositions of different Commissions could jeopardize the sale-ability of legitimate liquor licensed businesses. The intent of the law should be to assure insurance not to place a variable amount imposed by Commissions with different opinions. That would be unfair.

Simply put, assure a standard here and all benefit. Don’t put variables into the equation.

Any future changes in the insured amount should be legislated at need in the future by the State Legislature.

Our suggestion would be to rewrite Page 2 Section 4 lines 18-22 as such:

A class 5 licensee shall at all times maintain a liquor liability insurance coverage in an amount of not less than $1,000,000.00. (Striking: in an amount to be determined every two years pursuant to commission rules; provided that the commission shall not set the amount at less than $1,000,000.00).

Lastly, could we define Proof of Insurance to satisfy the law?

With these amendments, we would support this Bill HB563.


Bill Comerford
Hawaii Bar Owners Association


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