As of February 7th, 2022, the Hawai‘i Ant Lab (HAL) will begin an involuntary 50% furlough due to the unavailability of funds. HAL operates as a project of the Pacific Cooperative Studies Unit of the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa and is funded primarily through non-reoccurring grants from the Department of Agriculture and the Hawai‘i Invasive Species Council. Due to the impacts of the economic burden of the Covid-19 pandemic, the Department of Agriculture will not be able to fund HAL this upcoming fiscal year.
Senate Bill SB2996 has been introduced into the current legislative session to appropriate funds necessary for Hawai‘i Ant Lab to run at full capacity. This imperative funding will allow us to continue serving the State of Hawai‘i with the following vital services:
- Extension support to residents and agricultural industries affected by invasive ants.
- Early detection programs and eradication plans on neighbor islands to prevent the intra and inter-island spread of Little Fire Ants (LFA) in Hawai‘i.
- Research and development of effective and innovative methods for the control of LFA. This ongoing process makes HAL the leading agency on LFA management strategies in the world.
If you would like to support SB2996, please submit testimony (written or verbal) as this bill makes its way through the legislative process. Testimony will only be accepted when this measure isscheduled for a hearing, and this window of time is usually short. Your testimony only needs to be a few sentences long. Including your personal experiences is invaluable.
To submit testimony, create an account at the Hawaii State Legislature. Not sure on how to submit testimony? Follow these simple instructions on How to Submit Testimony Online and Sign Up for Remote Testimony from the Public Access Room.
Mahalo for your continued support!
Due to the HAL 50% furlough reduction, our revised Hilo office hours are as follows:
- Monday: 8 am – 4 pm
- Tuesday-Friday: 8 am – 12 pm