If you’ve ever needed help figuring out the Hawaii Legislature — which is just about everyone, including reporters like me — a good place to go is the Public Access Room on the fourth floor of the state Capitol.

It’s a free service that provides folks with information resources, facilities and services to navigate the sometimes mysterious legislative process.

How can I look up bills? How can I testify? What does it mean when legislation is recommitted or deferred? What did Joe Souki just say?

Public Access Room interview

PAR Director Virginia Beck and assistant director Keanu Young meet with Bruno Kaufmann of the Swiss Broadcasting Company.

These are the types of questions the Public Access Room can help answer. (Well, maybe not that last one.)

PAR, as it’s known, also holds workshops and training sessions, including on the neighbor islands.

This week, as PAR celebrates its 25th year, Bruno Kauffman of the Swiss Broadcasting Company interviewed PAR staff.

The SBC has been focused on the concept of ‘Direct Democracy’ and has been highlighting organizations across the world that demonstrate good practices in connecting legislation with the public,” according to a press release from the House of Representatives.

For more about PAR, click here or call (808) 587-0478.

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