Legislature(2019 - 2020)ADAMS ROOM 519
05/06/2019 01:30 PM FINANCE
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HOUSE BILL NO. 68 "An Act relating to the division of labor standards and safety; relating to the division of workers' compensation; establishing the division of workers' safety and compensation; and providing for an effective date." 2:35:55 PM Vice-Chair Johnston MOVED to ADOPT proposed committee substitute for HB 68, Work Draft 31-GH1049\U(Marx, 05/03/19) (copy on file). There being NO OBJECTION, it was so ordered. Co-Chair Wilson invited the department to the testifier table. The committee would hear from the department and a review of the committee substitute would follow. 2:36:29 PM GREY MITCHELL, DIRECTOR, WORKER'S COMPENSATION DIVISION, DEPARTMENT OF LABOR AND WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT, relayed that the bill merged the Division of Worker's Compensation together with the Division of Labor Standards and Safety. The divisions shared complimentary missions and functions. One division worked to prevent accidents, and the other worked to provide compensation for lost wages and medical costs if there was an injury. Merging the two divisions made good sense in many ways. The department was cognizant of the critical rolls each division played. The merger bill would not impact any of the legal or regulatory duties of either division. He aimed to take advantage of position vacancies and explore opportunities to streamline processes wherever possible. Mr. Mitchell continued that the fiscal note reflected streamlining in a couple of areas. The merger would flatten the management structure and labor standards and safety by reclassifying the division director to a deputy director position. The new position would focus on the new division's inspection, consultation, and enforcement functions. It would allow for a middle management reduction in the Alaska Occupational Safety Health (OSHA) component. He expected to see additional opportunities to consolidate and share administrative duties between the division as the merger matured. The merger would not happen over night but would be carefully developed over time. The bill did not propose to change any of the functions of the two divisions. He expected it to produce opportunities as the year progressed to share resources and to be more efficient and effective moving forward delivering the services of the two divisions. Co-Chair Wilson asked her staff to further discuss the bill. 2:39:01 PM LYNN GATTIS, STAFF, REPRESENTATIVE TAMMIE WILSON, review the changes in the bill. On page 7, lines 20-22, "grandparent" was added to AS 23.10.330(a) - exempted employment which would allow a child to work in a business that was owned and operated by a parent or a grandparent under the section. She referred next to page 7, line 26. The number "17" was changed to "16" to remove authorization of a work requirement for a 16 year old. On page 8, line 3 "5:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m." was changed to "7:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m." defining the time during the day that a 14 year old or 15 year old child could perform work outside of school hours. She continued to page 8, lines 8-15 which added a new section to redefine the conditions and hours during a day that a 14 year old or 15 year old child could perform work between June 1 and ending the first Monday of September of each year as 7:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. She completed reviewing the changes. Representative Knopp asked about the period beginning June 1 and ending on the first Monday of September each year. He clarified that kids would not be allowed to work starting in September. Co-Chair Wilson indicated there were two times designated for youth ages 14-15 to be able to work during school. They would be able to work from 7:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. When they were not in school they would be allowed to work from 7:00 a.m. to 10 p.m. Representative Knopp did not understand the need for defining the hours. Co-Chair Wilson explained that defined times were necessary because of the Fair Labor Standards act. Representative LeBon asked if there would be an advantage to moving the dates back to May 20th. Most high school graduation dates fell before May 20th. Co-Chair Wilson relayed that the federal government would not allow it. 2:43:06 PM Co-Chair Wilson OPENED Public Testimony. 2:43:15 PM Co-Chair Wilson CLOSED Public Testimony. Co-Chair Wilson invited the department to review the fiscal notes. 2:43:43 PM PALOMA HARBOUR, ADMINISTRATIVE SERVICES DIRECTOR, DEPARTMENT OF LABOR AND WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT, OFFICE OF MANAGEMENT AND BUDGET, relayed that fiscal note 1 was for the Workers' Compensation component. It was a zero fiscal note. The department did not anticipate immediate savings in Workers' Compensation as a part of the merger, but it expected out years savings not presently identified. Fiscal note 2 was for the OSHA component where the department was finding savings in some administrative support and some mid-level management. The total savings was $283,000 of Workers' Safety Compensation Administration account funds. Representative Knopp was curious about the reduction of $283,000 in the personal services line. He highlighted that the funds were listed as DGF. He asked if the savings was from inter-agency receipts or program receipts. He asked what would happen to the savings. Ms. Harbour responded that the funds were designated general funds from the Workers' Safety Compensation Administration account. It was a fee on insurance premiums that went into a DGF account and could go towards Workers' Compensation and safety program administration. It would be a savings to the account and would stay in the account for future year spending. Representative Knopp asked if there would be any reductions in employer premiums. Ms. Harbour replied that the cost savings would not result in premium savings. However, there had been premium savings which resulted in the revenue going into the account being lower. She indicated the bill would help the state to stay at the lower revenue amount. Co-Chair Wilson indicated amendments were due to the co-chair's office by May 7, 2019 at 9:00 a.m. Representative Knopp appreciated the bill, as it represented the department's efforts towards true consolidation and efficiencies. HB 68 was HEARD and HELD in committee for further consideration.
|HB 31 3 SLIDES.pdf||
HFIN 5/6/2019 1:30:00 PM
|HB031 Amendment 1 Wilson 5.6.19.pdf||
HFIN 5/6/2019 1:30:00 PM