At the top of the pages(s) of your testimony, put your name, the bill # and title of the bill you are testifying on. The first sentence should indicate if you are in support or in opposition to the bill, then explain why.
Your letterhead information.
Submitted on: Month Day, Year
Testimony on Bill # _______, Name of Bill, on Date and Time in front of Committee’s Name in Conference Room #.
From: Jane Apana
Submitted on: March 15, 2014
Testimony in support/opposition of SB123, Relating to Land and Natural Resources
Submitted to: The Senate Committee on Water and Land (WTL)
Aloha Chair Solomon and Members of the Committee,
I support SB123. ____________________________________________________ [State your reasons.]
How to Submit Testimony On-Line
1. Go to www.Capitol.Hawaii.gov
Select the first block (it looks like an envelope) titled “Submit Testimony”.
2. Register, and log in with the link that will be emailed to you.
Once you are logged in, you see the gold “Submit Testimony” button. Click it.
3. Submit your Online Testimony
Click on “Click for Instructions” and follow instruction numbers 1 to 4.
If you are having difficulty submitting testimony through our online system, please email your testimony directly to the committee using this list of email addresses. Please feel free to contact the committee to follow up and make sure they received your testimony.
If you do not have access to a computer, you may submit your testimony via fax, hand delivery or mail.
Tips for Oral Testimony at a Public Hearing
You are welcome, and encouraged, to come to the Capitol and testify in person at the committee hearing. Please send in your written testimony online before you come to speak. Arrive at least 5 minutes before the public hearing to check-in with the committee staff and sign up to testify. If you’re unable to submit written testimony before the hearing ask the committee staff before the hearing starts to add your name to the testimony list.
When your name is called to testify
State your name and thank the Committee Chair for the opportunity to speak. Do not read your written testimony since you submitted it in writing. Be specific and to the point as you may be asked to summarize your testimony. The Committee may ask you questions. If you do not know the answer to a question, just say so, you can always get the information to the committee after the hearing.
Be Passionate, Be Respectful and Be Heard
It is understandable that you have very strong feelings about the bill topic you’ll be testifying on. Make sure to be polite and respectful of the committee members. Depending on the committee, testimonies may also be posted to the Hawaii State Legislature’s website before the hearing date, so the committee members may not be the only ones reading what you submit.
You may also contact the committee chair or send a letter to raise your concerns about the bill either as an individual or on behalf of your group or organization. You may also want to consider communicating your concerns to each of the individual members of each committee.
Your voice makes a difference.
Testifying is a great way to voice your concerns on an issue or a certain bill. It is important for legislators to know your opinion before they vote on a bill.
A bill may be heard by multiple committees in both the State House and the State Senate. You can submit testimony before every committee hearing and you are encouraged to submit the same or similar testimony every time the bill is scheduled for hearing to each committee.
For more information
Citizen’s Guide to the Legislative Process