State of Hawaii Environmental Council Updates Administrative Rules

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Hawai’i OEQC

Policy Review

In 2018, the Office of Environmental Quality Control (OEQC), part of the Hawaii Department of Health, started the process of updating Hawai’i’s Administrative Rules for Environmental Impact Statements.

Problem

According to state law, the Environmental Council must request feedback from affected agencies; anticipating very detailed feedback from a range of stakeholders, staff needed a tool that simplified keeping track of the input received, without wasting time sorting and filing away comments received via email or long Word Documents.

Solution

OEQC launched a public consultation on the update using Konveio:

  • OEQC shared each version of the updated Hawai’i Administrative Rules with stakeholders and the general public, using Konveio’s intuitive online viewer.

  • Users were able to choose to comment anonymously or register and get access to additional features, including comment editing, deleting, upvoting and downvoting.

  • Users left comments directly on top of the text it relates to, cutting down on the time it took OEQC to track and process comments.

  • The OEQC had the option to moderate comments, in order to ensure that all commenting is appropriate and respectful.

  • Over the course of the project, the OEQC uploaded 4 iterations of the document, continuously updating the chapters based on comments received and re-submitting them for review.

Impact

The Konveio app provided OEQC with a platform that is simple to manage and while providing improved access for the public, due to its user-friendly interface. “The setup and administration experience were great. Setup was simple and straightforward, and Konveio staff promptly attended to any questions or functionality suggestions we had.” - said Zackary Stoddard, Planner at the Department of Planning and Permitting, Honolulu Government.

OEQC received 100s of comments, including suggestions on community involvement, potential risks as perceived by residents, concerns over environmental issues and general public support for the revision process. This reflects on active engagement, beneficial for the project’s transparency, quality and implementation process.


Chris Haller