Legislature(2005 - 2006)

2005-04-01 House Journal

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2005-04-01                     House Journal                      Page 0804
HB 243                                                                                            
HOUSE BILL NO. 243 by the House Rules Committee by request of                                       
the Governor, entitled:                                                                             
     "An Act relating to the maximum annual regulatory cost charge                                  
     collected from certain regulated public utilities and pipeline                                 
     carriers; and providing for an effective date."                                                
was read the first time and referred to the Labor & Commerce and                                    
Finance Committees.                                                                                 
The following fiscal note(s) apply:                                                                 
1. Fiscal, Dept. of Commerce, Community, & Economic Development                                     
The Governor's transmittal letter dated March 30, 2005, follows:                                    
"Dear Speaker Harris:                                                                               
Under the authority of art. III, sec. 18, of the Alaska Constitution, I am                          
transmitting a bill relating to the calculation of the annual regulatory                            
cost charge for public utilities and pipeline carriers within the                                   
jurisdiction of the Regulatory Commission of Alaska (RCA).                                          
Currently, the operations of the RCA are financed through a regulatory                              
cost charge collected from regulated public utilities and pipeline                                  
carriers in accordance with AS 42.05.254 and AS 42.06.286, which,                                   
under existing statute, may not exceed .7 percent of the total adjusted                             
gross revenue applicable to the regulated public utility and pipeline                               
carrier sectors.  The bill would increase that percentage to .9 percent                             
for the fiscal years beginning July 1, 2005, July 1, 2006, and July 1,                              
2007, to finance certain information system improvements within the                                 
RCA.  The improvements include the implementation of a case                                         
management system, a time management system, and an interactive                                     

2005-04-01                     House Journal                      Page 0805
RCA website that would allow regulated entities to electronically file                              
forms and pleadings on-line.                                                                        
Because it is anticipated that the information system improvements                                  
will result in lower operating costs for the RCA, the bill would then                               
reduce that .9 percent maximum regulatory cost charge to the previous                               
.7 percent level for the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2008, and for                                
subsequent fiscal years.  This bill would not change the existing                                   
maximum for the portion of the regulatory cost charge that finances                                 
operations of the public advocacy function under AS 42.04.070(c) and                                
AS 44.23.020(e) within the Department of Law.                                                       
I urge your prompt and favorable action on this measure.                                            
                                Sincerely yours,                                                    
                                Frank H. Murkowski