2016 Legislature Approves Funding in Support of State Innovation Initiatives

For Immediate Release:
May 6, 2016

HONOLULU—The state Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism (DBEDT) thanks the Hawaii State Legislature for showing broad support for the state’s innovation initiatives this legislative session. State lawmakers approved funding for a range of critical programs that help to grow and diversify Hawaii’s economy.

As part of the state budget and other fiscal bills, legislators allocated:

  • $3 million – The Entrepreneur’s Sandbox
  • $2 million – Hawaii Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant program
  • $1 million – HI Growth Initiative
  • $1 million – Business Development Grant Program
  • $1 million – Manufacturing Development Program
  • $350,000 – Impact Hub
  • $100,000 – Creative Lab program
  • $100,000 – Broadband Initiatives
  • $90,000 – Overseas Offices

In total, more than $8 million was appropriated to continue the momentum of Hawaii’s innovation economy. These measures attracted strong support from the Startup Paradise community, a diverse private sector group of local entrepreneurs, investors and businesses.

“We thank the Legislature for supporting our innovation initiatives, which will help with our overall growth strategy by investing in infrastructure, attracting capital and developing talent,” said DBEDT Director Luis P. Salaveria. “These allocations will help continue the momentum to create high wage jobs in this rapidly evolving digital age and provide resources that our local entrepreneurs need to start and grow their businesses right here in Hawaii.”

The funding touches a broad spectrum of innovation activities supported by DBEDT and its attached agencies.

About DBEDT (Department of Business, Economic Development & Tourism)
DBEDT is Hawaii’s resource center for economic and statistical data, business development opportunities, energy and conservation information, and foreign trade advantages. DBEDT’s mission is to achieve a Hawaii economy that embraces innovation and is globally competitive, dynamic and productive, providing opportunities for all Hawaii’s citizens. Through its attached agencies, the department fosters planned community development, creates affordable workforce housing units in high-quality living environments, and promotes innovation sector job growth.

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Media Contacts:
Christine Hirasa
Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism
Phone: (808) 587-9006
Mobile: (808) 286-9017
Website: dbedt.hawaii.gov