Press Releases

August 14, 2020

Hirono, Capito, Whitehouse Call on CMS to Make All Recommended Vaccines Accessible to Medicare Beneficiaries

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) along with Senators Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) led a bipartisan group of their Senate colleagues in a letter to Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Administrator Seema Verma requesting CMS make all recommended vaccines accessible to Medicare beneficiaries. Under current law, Medicare immunization coverage varies by vaccine. Some vaccines, like those that protect against influenza and pneumococ… Continue Reading

August 13, 2020

Hirono, Casey, Harris, Colleagues Introduce Coronavirus Language Access Act

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senators Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii), Bob Casey (D-Pa.), Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), and other colleagues introduced the Coronavirus Language Access Act, which expands access to coronavirus-related resources by increasing language access services and supporting culturally appropriate COVID-19 response programs to help older Americans, those who have limited English proficiency (LEP), and people with disabilities. The pandemic has magnified language access issues and disparities … Continue Reading

August 12, 2020

Senator Hirono Announces $1.5 Million in Grants to University of Hawaii to Expand Education Programs Focused on Food, Agriculture, and Natural Resources for Native Hawaiian Students

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) announced that the University of Hawaii will receive $1.5 million in grant funding from the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) to expand education programs focused on food, agriculture, and natural resources. This funding is part of a competitive grant program for Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian-Serving Institutions to promote educational equity for underrepresented students, expand edu… Continue Reading

August 12, 2020

Hirono, Leahy, Colleagues Demand White House Sustain Full Funding for National Guard COVID-19 Response

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) joined a letter led by Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and signed by 32 of their colleagues calling for President Trump to restore full federal funding in states where the National Guard has been deployed to respond to the coronavirus pandemic. Without explanation, last week President Trump slashed the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) reimbursement for National Guard operations from full funding to 75 percent for all states except Te… Continue Reading

August 05, 2020

Hirono, Gillibrand, Smith, and Colleagues Introduce Impact Aid Infrastructure Act to Boost School Infrastructure Projects

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii), along with her colleagues Senators Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), Tina Smith (D-Minn.), Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.), Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.), Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), and Tom Udall (D-N.M.) introduced the Impact Aid Infrastructure Act (IAIA), which provides $1 billion in supplemental funding for school infrastructure construction grants through the Impact Aid program. Similar legislation was introduced in the House last y… Continue Reading

July 31, 2020

Hirono, Murray, and Colleagues to McConnell: Immigrants Are Essential and Deserve Support in Coronavirus Relief Legislation

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) and Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Ranking Member Patty Murray (D-Wash.) led a letter with 25 of their colleagues urging Majority Leader McConnell to support tax-paying immigrant families who have Individual Tax Identification Numbers (ITIN) by ensuring they have access to economic relief payments provided in the CARES Act and any future coronavirus relief package. An estimated 20 million immigrants work … Continue Reading

July 29, 2020

Hirono Announces Nearly $3.2 Million For Native Hawaiian Serving Educational Institutions

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) announced nearly $3.2 million in federal funding for Native Hawaiian Serving Institutions in Hawaii, including Chaminade University, the University of Hawaii at Hilo (UH Hilo), UH Maui College, Honolulu Community College, Kapiolani Community College, and Windward Community College. Provided through the U.S. Department of Education's Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian Serving Institutions (ANNHSI) program, the funding will support sever… Continue Reading

July 29, 2020

Hirono Joins Colleagues to Urge Senate Leadership to Include Health Care Privacy Legislation in Next COVID-19 Relief Legislation

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) joined a letter led by Senators Mark Warner (D-Va.) and Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) to Senate leadership urging them to protect Americans' private COVID-19 health data by including the Public Health Emergency Privacy Act in the next coronavirus relief package. The letter, sent to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Chairman Lamar Alexander a… Continue Reading

July 25, 2020

Hirono Statement on Approval of Federal Disaster Declaration for Hawaii in Advance of Hurricane Douglas

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) issued the following statement on the President's approval of an emergency declaration for Hawaii in advance of Hurricane Douglas: "Federal, State, and County officials are working in concert to prepare as Hurricane Douglas approaches the state. I appreciate the swift approval of this emergency declaration by the administration - which makes available crucial federal resources as we prepare and then recover from the storm. "While this decl… Continue Reading

July 24, 2020

Hirono, Colleagues Highlight Exclusion of Small Farmers in Farmers to Families Food Box Program

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) led six of her Senate colleagues in a letter to U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Sonny Perdue expressing alarm that the USDA has excluded small and mid-sized farmers from participating in the Farmers to Families Food Box Program during the pandemic over a voluntary audit and certification. This exclusion means that large farms with national distribution networks are prioritized over smaller farms who have local distribution net… Continue Reading

July 24, 2020

Following Hirono-led Advocacy, IG Will Review DOJ’s Use of Force Against Peaceful Protesters in Lafayette Square and Portland

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, following advocacy from Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii), the Department of Justice (DOJ) Inspector General (IG) announced it will investigate DOJ's use of force on peaceful protesters in Lafayette Square and Portland, Oregon. "As protesters across the country have peacefully demanded their government address systemic racial inequality and police brutality against Black Americans, they have been met with militarized force and breathtaking violence by federal agents-s… Continue Reading

July 23, 2020

Hirono-Backed Barbers Point Provision Included in Senate-Passed NDAA

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) announced that she secured a provision in the Senate-passed Fiscal Year 2021 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) that will support community development of former Naval Air Station (NAS) Barbers Point by directing the Navy to spend funds from the established Ford Island master development agreement to bolster electrical infrastructure. "The committee strongly encourages the Navy to use its in-kind fund, established in the Ford Island m… Continue Reading

July 22, 2020

Hirono Statement on the Sanders Amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie HIrono issued the following statement on her vote in favor of the Sanders Amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA): "As a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, I am a strong supporter of the role our military plays in protecting our national security. But as I have said before, our national security is not just about how much money the Pentagon receives. It's also about a strong economy - which necessitates investments in jobs, educati… Continue Reading

July 22, 2020

Hirono, Klobuchar, 29 Colleagues Call on Trump Administration to Help Secure Access to PPE to Conduct November Election Safely During Pandemic

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senators Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) and Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) led 29 of their colleagues in a letter to Vice President Mike Pence and Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Administrator Peter Gaynor urging them to take immediate action to provide Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and sanitizing supplies for election and poll workers-and voters-ahead of the November 2020 election. Guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that voters and … Continue Reading

July 08, 2020

Hirono and Colleagues to Secretary Ross: Release IG Report on “Sharpiegate”

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii), along with Senators Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.), Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), Maggie Hassan (D-N.H.), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), Ed Markey (D-Mass.), Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn), and Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) wrote to Department of Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross to demand he complete the necessary steps to make public Commerce Department Inspector General (IG) Peggy Gustafson's report into the … Continue Reading

July 02, 2020

As Another Month of Rent is Due, Senator Hirono Cosponsors Bill to Extend Nationwide Eviction Moratorium

WASHINGTON, D.C. -Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) cosponsored the Protecting Renters from Eviction and Fees Act, legislation introduced by Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) to extend and expand the federal eviction moratorium for renters set out in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act that is set to end on July 24, 2020. The bill would extend the existing moratorium on evictions from properties with federally-backed mortgages through March 27, 2021 and expand it to … Continue Reading

July 01, 2020

Hirono Demands Commerce Department Stop Obstructing Release of Inspector General Report on “Sharpiegate” Controversy

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) called on the Department of Commerce to stop obstructing the release of the Inspector General (IG) Peggy Gustafson's report into the politicization of science during Hurricane Dorian in September 2019. "Americans in the path of a serious storm should be able to rely on the federal government to provide factual, science-based information to keep them safe," Senator Hirono said. "'Sharpiegate' was a completely unnecessary and harmful attempt b… Continue Reading

June 30, 2020

Hirono Announces $8.9 Million Grant for Kauai and Hawaii Counties to Provide Rural Transit Service During Coronavirus Pandemic

WASHINGTON, D.C.- Today, Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) announced that the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) awarded the Hawaii Department of Transportation (HDOT) $8.9 million to support rural transit service in Kauai and Hawaii counties during the coronavirus pandemic. The Kauai County Transportation Agency and the County of Hawaii Mass Transit Agency can use these funds on capital, planning, or operational expenses like salaries, fuel, vehicle maintenance, and supplies to clean and dis… Continue Reading

June 29, 2020

Hirono, Wyden, Blumenthal, and Schumer Introduce Emergency Broadband Connections Act to Protect Americans’ Access to Broadband During Coronavirus Pandemic

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii), along with her colleagues Senators Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), and Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) introduced the Emergency Broadband Connections Act, legislation that helps Americans continue to access high-speed internet during the pandemic. The bill is based on broadband provisions in the House-passed HEROES Act. This bill would provide internet-connected devices and $50 a month toward broadband access to workers who were l… Continue Reading

June 25, 2020

Hawaii Department of Health to Receive More Than $5.6 Million for Public Health Emergency Preparedness Program

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) announced that the Hawaii Department of Health (HDOH) will receive more than $5.6 million from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention through the Public Health Emergency Preparedness (PHEP) program. Funding under PHEP allows state health departments, along with local and territorial agencies, to strengthen their response to public health threats like infectious diseases, natural disasters, and biological, chemical, nuclear, and radiol… Continue Reading

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