Legislature(1993 - 1994)
03/29/1993 08:35 AM FIN
* first hearing in first committee of referral
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
HOUSE BILL NO. 69 "An Act relating to registration of and information about sex offenders and amending Alaska Rules of Criminal Procedure 11(c) and 32(b)." Members were provided with a Work Draft for HB 69, 8- LS0395\U, dated 3/25/93 (Attachment 1). HB 69 was held in a subcommittee consisting of Chair Therriault with members Representatives Brown and Martin. Representative Therriault explained changes by the Subcommittee. References to DNA blood typing were deleted. First time sex offenders are required to register for 15 years. Sex offenders who have been convicted two or more times must register for life. Sexual abuse of a minor in fourth degree has been eliminated at the request of Representative Barnes. He explained that language to allow dispute of file information was added. The Department "shall" correct or supplement inaccurate or incomplete information. Representative Therriault note that by law the registration fee cannot be punitive in nature. The Subcommittee set the fee at $5.00 dollars. Representative Therriault MOVED to ADOPT Work Draft for HB 69, 8-LS0395\U, dated 3/25/93. There being NO OBJECTION, it 2 was so ordered. Representative Therriault MOVED to Amend, CSHB 69 (FIN), delete page 3, line 28, "11.40.130". He explained that offenders can be convicted under 11.40.130 for supplying alcohol to minors. There being NO OBJECTION, it was so ordered. Co-Chair MacLean asked if VPSO's would substitute for the Chief of Police in rural areas. She asked if the Department of Corrections could register sex offenders prior to release. C.E. SWACKHAMMER, DEPUTY DIRECTOR, DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC SAFETY clarified that VPSO's would not be required to perform the registrations. He added that the Alaska State Troopers will aid rural areas with sex offender registration. Village Public Safety Officers would be informed of registered sex offenders in their areas. He explained that the Department of Corrections would not register offenders since offenders future place of residence and employment would be unknown. Representative Therriault noted that sex offender registration for first offenders will be retroactive ten years to 1984. Representative Navarre asked if the a ten retroactive period would be subject to discrimination challenges. Representative Therriault did not think there would be a basis for legal challenges. DOUG WOOLIVER, STAFF ATTORNEY, REPRESENTATIVE BARNES assured members that the ten year retroactive period would be upheld in court. He cited the difficulty in collecting accurate data past ten years. Mr. Wooliver explained the legal rational supporting a ten year retroactive period. Members discussed the retroactive registration period. Representative Navarre asked if other state law has been tested in regards to the right to privacy. Mr. Wooliver stated that Washington state has a constitutional right to privacy. The Washington State Supreme Court has up held the retroactive period. He clarified that offenders convicted of two or more offenses must register regardless of the time of conviction. Representative Therriault relayed that supporters of the legislation feel that sex offenders have a high recidivism rate because they do not think they will be caught. The legislation is designed to be a deterrent. Mr. Wooliver explained, in response to a question from Representative Foster, that a regulatory action would not be considered as a "expos facto". A punishment cannot be increased retroactively. Laws that are regulatory in nature 3 are not designed to punish. Representative Therriault MOVED to report CSHB 69 (FIN) out of Committee with individual recommendations and with the accompanying fiscal notes. There being NO OBJECTION, it was so ordered. CSHB 69 (FIN) was reported out of Committee with a "do pass" recommendation "do pass" recommendation and with four zero fiscal notes by the Department of Corrections, dated 2/8/93; Department of Law, dated 2/8/93; two by the Department of Administration and with a fiscal impact note by the Department of Public Safety, dated 3/25/93. hb#171 HOUSE BILL NO. 171 "An Act providing coverage for hospice care under the Medicaid program; reordering the priorities given to optional services under the Medicaid program; and providing for an effective date." RITCHIE SONNER, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, HOSPICE AND HOME CARE OF JUNEAU spoke in support of HB 171. She explained that hospice care supports the terminally ill to allow them to remain in their home. She emphasized that home care is cost effective. She stressed that the terminally ill are allowed to remain with their loved ones. She explained that terminally ill is defined as those that have 6 or less months to live. An inter disciplinary team of counselors, physicians, nurses, therapist, clergy and volunteers assist the terminally ill. The goal of hospice care is to allow terminally ill to spend their final days pain free and alert, at peace with themselves and their loved ones in their own home. Hospice care is endorsed and supported by Medicare. Representative Parnell pointed out that there are no Medicare certified hospice organizations in Alaska. He asked if the bill will impact certification. Ms. Sonner stated that in lieu of hospice certification Medicare will certify home care providers. She felt that the legislation would encourage hospice certification. Co-Chair Larson asked how the effective date would affect the Department of Health and Social Services. DAVE WILLIAMS, DIVISION OF MEDICAL ASSISTANCE, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND SOCIAL SERVICES replied that the Department would like the effective date to be delayed until January 1994. He explained that the Department of Health and Social Services needs time to institute the program. He explained that the fiscal note will cover the cost of changing the 4 claims payment system. Representative Martin MOVED to Amend the effective date to insert "January 1, 1994." There being NO OBJECTION, it was so ordered. Co-Chair MacLean MOVED to report HB 171 out of Committee with individual recommendations and with the accompanying fiscal note. There being NO OBJECTION, it was so ordered. CSHB 171 (FIN) was reported out of Committee with a "do pass" recommendation and with a fiscal impact note by the Department of Health and Social Services, dated 3/22/93.