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Posted: Friday, March 29th, 2013 9:03 AM HST

Hawaii Senate committee debates shield law

By Associated Press

HONOLULU (AP) The Senate judiciary committee plans to decide next week whether to move forward with a plan to extend Hawaii's shield law with changes that would limit its scope in protecting journalists.

The law that protects reporters' confidential sources is set to expire in June. Hawaii lawmakers are considering making the shield law permanent.

The committee heard testimony Thursday focusing on House changes to the bill that would make the law less comprehensive.

News media organizations are urging Hawaii senators to reject those changes.

The House voted to expand the law to require journalists to disclose material needed to investigate potential felonies or civil cases. The current law only has exceptions for felonies and defamation cases.

Chairman Clayton Hee of the Senate judiciary committee says he thinks the amendments are reasonable.

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