Special Fund Dollars Support Hawai’i School Repairs
By Wendy Osher
Special Fund dollars will be used to support the Hawai’i 3R’s program under a bill signed into law by Governor Neil Abercrombie this week.
Hawaii 3R’s (Repair, Remodel and Restore Hawaii’s public schools) Program was created in 2001 by U.S. Senator Dan Inouye to tackle a backlog of repair and maintenance projects at public schools in the state.
As federal funding, grants and endowments become less available, Act 150 supports continuation of the Hawaii 3R’s work by allowing it to receive money from the School-Level Minor Repairs and Maintenance Special Fund.
“Act 150 provides Hawaii 3R’s with a dedicated revenue stream which will allow them to leverage private dollars and community sweat equity to create conducive and safe learning environments for our students,” said Jill Tokuda, chairperson of the Senate Committee on Education.
Since 2001, taxpayers in Hawai’i have been contributing to the special fund through an opt-in box on their tax form that seeks a $2 donation.
“We’re giving tax payers the opportunity to put their hard-earned money into a successful public-private partnership that has made a significant difference in the repair and maintenance of our schools,” said Tokuda.
Since the inception of Hawai’i 3R’s, the State has saved more than $37 million in costs for school repairs and maintenance projects.