Legislature(2001 - 2002)
04/24/2001 02:24 PM FIN
* first hearing in first committee of referral
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
HOUSE BILL NO. 250 An Act relating to missions and measures to be applied to certain expenditures by the executive branch of state government and the University of Alaska from the state operating budget for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2002; and providing for an effective date. DENNY DEWITT, STAFF, REPRESENTATIVE ELDON MULDER, provided information on HB 250. He observed that the legislation is the result of work by the House Finance subcommittees. He referred to Page 40, Line 13. He noted that provisions were added to Page 2, Lines 15 and 16. He explained that the language had been added to determine how consumer complaints are tracked and addressed. Mr. DeWitt commented that a few technical amendments are needed. He explained that the budget was not organized in a manner that allows comparison with the budget bill, which has been changed in HB 250 to allow for the comparisons and formatting of the budget bill as passed by the House. The change is referred to on Page 37, Line 10. There are references in a number of sections that would identify performance measures within the Department of Law. He added that an additional technical amendment would be needed on Page 39, Section 105, Line 17 and 18, noting that the National Guard Youth Corps had changed its name to the Alaska Military Youth Academy which was not caught in the prepared draft. Mr. DeWitt advised that there had been other requests for changes and explained that not all were included. Representative Davies voiced his concern with the change to all of the commissioner's offices. Mr. DeWitt acknowledged that had been included. Co-Chair Mulder MOVED to ADOPT the technical amendments. There being NO OBJECTION, they were adopted. Representative Lancaster MOVED to ADOPT Amendment #2. [Copy on File]. He pointed out that it was a technical amendment. There being NO OBJECTION, it was adopted. Representative Davies discussed Amendment #3, the commissioner's offices on Page 2, Lines 15 and 16. [Copy on File]. He noted his concern that subcommittees did not have the opportunity to discuss those provisions. Representative J. Davies stated that there are agencies that do not make sense. Co-Chair Mulder argued in support of the change. He observed that some agencies would have more complaints due to the issues involved. Representative Davies pointed out that most complaints are dealt with at the division level within the departments; however, others come to the commissioner's level. He emphasized that the intent of missions and measures was a "meeting of the minds" which the amendment could represent. Representative Croft noted that appeals would be separate from the Department of Revenue. Mr. Dewitt explained that the Department of Revenue had indicated that the process was fairly easy to keep track and helpful as a management tool. He advised that it is the Legislature's responsibility to track the commissioner's level. Co-Chair Mulder stated his support for retaining the provision for one year. He noted that modifications could be made. Representative Davies reiterated that there has not been an opportunity to have discussions and asked that communication be initiated with the commissioner offices. Co-Chair Mulder stressed that the provision is new and that it is the intent of the Committee to work with the agencies for the refinement of the provisions. He reiterated that it would be an effective tool. Representative Davies WITHDREW Amendment #3. Mr. Dewitt reviewed Amendment #4, a technical amendment. [Copy on File]. He explained that the amendment would affect the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs and that the subcommittee chair had agreed them to. Co-Chair Mulder MOVED to ADOPT Amendment #4. There being NO OBJECTION, it was adopted. Representative Croft MOVED to ADOPT Amendment #5. [Copy on File]. Co-Chair Mulder OBJECTED. Representative Croft spoke in support of the amendment. He noted that it would add a new section indicating that: "The mission of the Alaska State Legislature is to create a balanced state budget, encourage public participation in government and work to preserve and further the general health, economic vitality, educational needs and growth for the people of the state of Alaska". Co-Chair Mulder stated that he supports the intent of the amendment, however, suggested that it would be difficult to hold the legislature accountable for items that they do not have direct control over. Representative Davies argued that the Legislature should manage and control revenues through other measures. Representative Croft noted that it is difficult to craft missions and measures which are significant and broad enough to be important. He commented on the need to have open discussion on the amendment and the "art of the process". TAPE HFC 01 - 94, SIDE B A roll call vote was taken on the motion. IN FAVOR: Bunde, Croft, Davies OPPOSED: Harris, Hudson, Lancaster, Foster, Mulder Representatives Moses, Whitaker, and Williams were absent. The MOTION FAILED (3-5). Representative Davies MOVED to ADOPT Amendment #6 on Page 31, Line 15, deleting that language. He noted that measure had not been discussed in subcommittee. Representative Harris agreed that the language could be deleted. There being NO OBJECTION, Amendment #6 was adopted. Representative J. Davies requested that Mr. DeWitt repeat his previous statement regarding Department of Natural Resources. Mr. Dewitt explained that there was a substantive change to the measure of inventory. He added that there were additional minor areas of concern. The percentage change language was removed. Representative Hudson MOVED to ADOPT a language change on Page 42, Line 28, deleting "claims", and inserting "location". There being NO OBJECTION, it was adopted. Co-Chair Mulder pointed out that the bill has a zero fiscal note. Vice-Chair Bunde MOVED to report CSHB 250 (FIN) out of Committee with individual recommendations and with the accompanying zero fiscal note. There being NO OBJECTION, it was so ordered. CS HB 250 (FIN) was reported out of Committee with a "do pass" recommendation and with a zero fiscal note by the House Finance Committee.