Hawai’i County Mayor Billy Kenoi signed the controversial, anti-GMO Bill 113 into law last Thursday, leaving many surprised and others wondering how this will impact farming on the Big Island.
The bill, which the Hawaii County Council passed in a 6-3 vote on November 19, will ban open-air use and testing of genetically modified crops, with some exemptions. Many wondered how Mayor Kenoi would handle the bill after it was passed. Just last month, the Kaua’i County Council overturned Mayor Bernard Carvalho’s veto of a controversial anti-GMO bill. After the precedent set in Kaua’i, Bill 113 supporters “kept the threat of a veto at the front of their minds with some believing the fight over genetically modified organisms had yet to be won. Overturning a veto would have required six votes from the council,” wrote journalist Tom Callis.
“We are determined to do what is right for the land because this place is unlike any other in the world,” Kenoi said in his statement to the County Council. “ With this new ordinance we are conveying that instead of global agribusiness corporations, we want to encourage and support community-based farming and ranching.”
Read the full, original story: Mayor Kenoi signs anti-GMO bill
- “Hawaii County’s anti-GMO bill 113 passed too quickly, without consideration of unintended consequences,” Huffington Post
- “Plant scientist analyzes Hawaii County’s anti-GMO Bill 113,” Biofortified
- “Kaua’i goes rogue, anti-GMO bill passed over mayor’s veto, contentious legal fight imminent,” Genetic Literacy Project