Legislature(2011 - 2012)CAPITOL 120

02/22/2012 01:00 PM JUDICIARY


Download Mp3. <- Right click and save file as

* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
*+ HB 221 PUBLIC DEFENDER APPOINTMENT PROCEDURES TELECONFERENCED
Heard & Held
+ Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled TELECONFERENCED
+= HB 293 RIGHTS OF CRIME VICTIMS/CONTINUANCES TELECONFERENCED
Moved CSHB 293(JUD) Out of Committee
+= HB 262 PASSENGER SECURITY: TRANSPORT. FACILITY TELECONFERENCED
Heard & Held
        HB 262 - PASSENGER SECURITY: TRANSPORT. FACILITY                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
2:39:58 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR GATTO announced  that the final order of  business would be                                                               
HOUSE  BILL  NO.  262,  "An   Act  relating  to  the  offense  of                                                               
interference with  access to  public buildings  or transportation                                                               
facilities, when a person conditions  access to a public building                                                               
or  transportation  facility  on   consent  to  certain  physical                                                               
contact or  to an electronic  process that produces a  picture of                                                               
the private exposure of the person."                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
2:40:10 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  THOMPSON moved  to adopt  the proposed  committee                                                               
substitute  (CS)  for  HB   262,  Version  27-LS1016\I,  Gardner,                                                               
2/17/12, as the working document.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GRUENBERG objected for the purpose of discussion.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
2:40:30 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MARK  SABEL, Staff,  Representative Sharon  Cissna, Alaska  State                                                               
Legislature, on behalf  of the sponsor of  HB 262, Representative                                                               
Cissna, in  response to  a request, indicated  that Version  I of                                                               
HB 262 addresses airports, and offered  his understanding that an                                                               
amendment to Version  I in members' packets could  not be offered                                                               
at  this time  because  the  legislation it  mirrors  is not  yet                                                               
properly  before the  House  Judiciary  Standing Committee;  that                                                               
amendment, labeled 27-LS1016\I.1, Gardner, 2/18/12, read:                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
     Page 1, line 4, following "person":                                                                                      
          Insert "; requiring certain airports in the state                                                                   
     to  apply for  the federal  security screening  opt-out                                                                  
     program;  providing  reimbursement  to  a  municipality                                                                  
     that applies  for the  federal security  screening opt-                                                                  
     out program; and providing for an effective date"                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
     Page 2, following line 5:                                                                                                  
     Insert new bill sections to read:                                                                                          
        "*  Sec.  2. The  uncodified  law  of the  State  of                                                                
     Alaska is amended by adding a new section to read:                                                                         
          APPLICATION FOR FEDERAL SECURITY SCREENING OPT-                                                                       
     OUT PROGRAM.  (a) The Department of  Transportation and                                                                    
     Public  Facilities shall,  by December 31,  2013, apply                                                                    
     for  the  federal  security screening  opt-out  program                                                                    
     under  49 U.S.C.  44920 for  those  airports under  the                                                                    
     control of the Department  of Transportation and Public                                                                    
     Facilities  that   are  subject  to   federal  security                                                                    
     screening requirements.                                                                                                    
          (b)  A municipality that operates an airport in                                                                       
     the  state   that  is   subject  to   federal  security                                                                    
     screening  requirements  shall, by  December 31,  2013,                                                                    
     apply  for  the   federal  security  screening  opt-out                                                                    
     program under 49 U.S.C. 44920.                                                                                             
        * Sec. 3. The uncodified  law of the State of Alaska                                                                  
     is amended by adding a new section to read:                                                                                
          REIMBURSEMENT. Subject to appropriation, the                                                                          
     Department  of  Transportation  and  Public  Facilities                                                                    
     shall  reimburse a  municipality  that  is required  to                                                                    
     submit an application  under sec. 2(b) of  this Act for                                                                    
     the reasonable  costs, as determined by  the Department                                                                    
     of  Transportation and  Public Facilities,  of applying                                                                    
     for  the  federal  security screening  opt-out  program                                                                    
     under  49  U.S.C.  44920.  If  appropriations  are  not                                                                    
     sufficient  fully  to  fund reimbursements  under  this                                                                    
     section, the amount available  shall be distributed pro                                                                    
     rata among eligible municipalities.                                                                                        
       * Sec. 4. Sections 2 and 3 of this Act take effect                                                                     
     immediately under AS 01.10.070(c)."                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  GATTO observed  that under  Version I,  the references  to                                                               
public buildings  have been  removed, and thus  HB 262  no longer                                                               
addresses  behavior occurring  in  public  buildings, but  rather                                                               
only behavior occurring in transportation facilities.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GRUENBERG [removed his] objection.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  GATTO,  after  ascertaining  that there  were  no  further                                                               
objections, announced that Version I was before the committee.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GRUENBERG  opined that the bill  should define the                                                               
term,   "transportation  facilities".     He   then  noted   that                                                               
Version I's proposed  AS 11.76.118(a)(2)  no longer  contains the                                                               
phrase,  "the  genitals,  anus, or  female  breast  or  otherwise                                                               
creates an electronic image of",  and asked why that language was                                                               
removed.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
2:47:37 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE CHRIS TUCK, Alaska  State Legislature, offered his                                                               
understanding that that language  was removed as being redundant,                                                               
and  acknowledged  that  the term,  "transportation  facilities",                                                               
still needs to be defined in the bill.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  GATTO observed  that  a violation  under  Version I  would                                                               
still be a class A misdemeanor.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MR. SABEL,  in response  to comments,  proffered that  a possible                                                               
solution to  the problem of inappropriately-invasive  searches by                                                               
Transportation  Security  Administration   (TSA)  personnel  lies                                                               
within the aforementioned amendment,  which, he reiterated, could                                                               
not be offered at this time.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
[Chair Gatto turned the gavel over to Vice Chair Thompson.]                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE   PRUITT    pointed   out,   though,    that   the                                                               
aforementioned  amendment would  not  provide a  solution to  the                                                               
problem  because the  same  security  screening techniques  would                                                               
still have to be employed, just not by TSA employees.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
VICE CHAIR THOMPSON concurred.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  GRUENBERG  offered  his understanding  that  when                                                               
Texas attempted to  institute legislation similar to  HB 262, the                                                               
federal  government  threatened  to  close down  the  airport  in                                                               
Dallas, and  said he  didn't want something  similar to  occur in                                                               
Alaska.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
VICE  CHAIR  THOMPSON  said  he, too,  had  heard  about  Texas's                                                               
experience.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE PRUITT expressed concern  that if legislation such                                                               
as  HB  262 passes,  the  unintended  consequence could  be  that                                                               
planes  originating in  Alaska would  not be  allowed to  land at                                                               
other U.S. airports.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
2:55:26 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  TUCK relayed  that  his  research regarding  what                                                               
other  countries   are  doing  indicates  that   using  dogs  and                                                               
interviewing travelers  has proven to  be the most  effective way                                                               
of securing  everyone's safety at  airports.   Characterizing the                                                               
TSA's current  screening procedures  as questionable  with regard                                                               
to actually  securing the  safety of  air travelers,  he ventured                                                               
that the  goal with HB  262 is to come  up with a  more effective                                                               
but  less  invasive   way  of  screening  such   travelers.    In                                                               
conclusion, he  pointed out  that air  travelers flying  into the                                                               
United States from  other countries are not  subjected to current                                                               
TSA screening  procedures - only  air travelers boarding  a plane                                                               
in the U.S. are.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
[Vice Chair Thompson returned the gavel to Chair Gatto.]                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  GRUENBERG suggested  that  perhaps  a task  force                                                               
could be  formed to  research the  issues raised  as a  result of                                                               
current TSA screening procedures.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  PRUITT agreed,  venturing that  perhaps any  such                                                               
task force could  work with other states to  address those issues                                                               
at the federal level.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
3:01:23 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
DIANE  SCHENKER, Co-director,  Alaskans' Freedom  to Travel  USA,                                                               
offered her  understanding that HB  262 is more limited  than the                                                               
aforementioned Texas legislation - and  thus might not elicit the                                                               
same type of response - and  that there are plenty of alternative                                                               
ways to screen air travelers  without resorting to touching their                                                               
genitals or relying  on untested whole-body scanners,  as the TSA                                                               
currently does.   Current  TSA security-screening  procedures fit                                                               
the definition  of sexual assault  under Alaskan's  statutes, she                                                               
noted, and are  causing Alaskans great fear.   In conclusion, she                                                               
opined  that   prohibiting  TSA   personnel  from   touching  air                                                               
travelers'  genitals  -  as  HB  262  is  proposing  -  shouldn't                                                               
preclude the TSA from conducting reasonable searches.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  GRUENBERG again  suggested that  a task  force be                                                               
formed.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
MR. SABEL mentioned  that the sponsor is  pursuing that approach;                                                               
has formed  a group called,  "United States for  Travel Freedom";                                                               
and feels  that passage of  HB 262 would  be a good  step towards                                                               
fulfilling  Alaska's  constitutional responsibility  [to  protect                                                               
its  citizens].    Remarking on  the  non-responsiveness  of  the                                                               
federal government  thus far  to pleas for  help, he  opined that                                                               
more needs  to be  done to correct  the problem,  particularly in                                                               
Alaska because, according to statistics,  Alaskans travel by air,                                                               
and suffer  trauma and  abuse, more often  than the  residents of                                                               
other states.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR GATTO expressed  interest in coming up  with an alternative                                                               
to current TSA security-screening procedures  that could work for                                                               
everyone, surmising that  [so-called] "trusted traveler" programs                                                               
don't constitute such an alternative.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR GATTO  relayed that HB  262 [Version I] would  therefore be                                                               
held over.                                                                                                                      

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
HB0221A.pdf HJUD 2/22/2012 1:00:00 PM
HB 221
HB 221 Sectional Analysis.pdf HJUD 2/22/2012 1:00:00 PM
HB 221
HB 221 Court Rule 39 1.pdf HJUD 2/22/2012 1:00:00 PM
HB 221
HB221-DOA-PDA-1-27-12.pdf HJUD 2/22/2012 1:00:00 PM
HB 221
HB221-LAW-CRIM-02-17-12.pdf HJUD 2/22/2012 1:00:00 PM
HB 221
HB 293 Amendment Keller.pdf HJUD 2/22/2012 1:00:00 PM
HB 293
HB 293 Amendment Thompson.pdf HJUD 2/22/2012 1:00:00 PM
HB 293
HB 293 CS Version M.pdf HJUD 2/22/2012 1:00:00 PM
HB 293
HB 262 CS ( ) I.pdf HJUD 2/22/2012 1:00:00 PM
HB 262
HB 262 Amendment Cissna I.1.pdf HJUD 2/22/2012 1:00:00 PM
HB 262
HB 221 Amendment Chenault.pdf HJUD 2/22/2012 1:00:00 PM
HB 221
HB 221 Memorandum Legislative Legal.pdf HJUD 2/22/2012 1:00:00 PM
HB 221