Legislature(1995 - 1996)
05/01/1995 03:08 PM L&C
* first hearing in first committee of referral
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
HB 288 - PROCUREMENT PREFERENCE/DISABLED PERSONS Number 029 REPRESENTATIVE JEANNETTE JAMES, PRIME SPONSOR OF HB 288, said HB 288 provides for people to qualify for a bidder preference granted to disabled people. It does so by extending the preference to include corporations where 100 percent of the shareholders are disabled and to disabled partnerships where 100 percent of the partners are disabled. The law currently states that only people who are sole proprietors are able to qualify. Dugan Petty was in attendance to explain the changes to the bill. She said she has a letter from the Legislative Legal Services Division stating that there still may be a problem with the existing bill as opposed to the new language relating to who qualifies for a bidder preference. The addition to this language is that in order to qualify for a bidder preference, the company has to have maintained for a period of six months immediately preceding the date of the sale, a place of business within the state that offers the supply, services or construction of the general nature solicited by the agency. Also it is required that it be staffed by the bidder or an employee of the bidder. She reiterated Dugan Petty was present to answer any questions. CHAIRMAN KOTT noted for the record that Representative Gene Kubina had joined the committee at 3:12 p.m. Number 017 REPRESENTATIVE BEVERLY MASEK asked if they were working off the work draft G, dated 4-10-95, or the work draft that had been faxed to her office dated 4-28-95. Number 086 REPRESENTATIVE JAMES answered that she was looking at the proposed committee substitute (CS) (L&C) Version G. She explained the changes to the old Version F. Section 1 in Version F becomes Section 2 in Version G. The new Section 1 has the new language, which she had just read. The old Section 2 was deleted, and Section 3 remains the same in both versions. Number 104 REPRESENTATIVE NORMAN ROKEBERG inquired if there was an Alaska Statute with the definition of "disabled persons." Number 109 REPRESENTATIVE JAMES said these people must be severely disabled. The people would have to be certified by Vocational Rehabilitation as qualified. That would be the same qualifications for this bill. Number 130 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG asked where that is stated in the bill. REPRESENTATIVE JAMES said it was in existing statute. There wasn't a reference to that in this bill. She said they were allowing corporations to qualify as long as the owners are 100 percent disabled, sank as the existing law with respect to sole proprietors. REPRESENTATIVE JAMES said the current statute reads: "A person with a disability means a person who has a permanent mental or physical impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activity. Major life activities include caring for oneself, performing manual tasks, walking, hearing, speaking, breathing, learning, and working. Mental impairment means a physiological disorder or condition, cosmetic disfigurement or anatomical loss affecting one or more of body systems such as neurological, muscular skeletal, special sense organs, respiratory including speech organs, cardiovascular, reproductive, digestive, genital urinary, (indisc.) lymphatic, skin and endocrine, or mental or physical disorder including mental retardation, organic brain syndrome, emotional or mental illness and specific learning disabilities." REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG said he would like a copy of this. Number 172 REPRESENTATIVE KIM ELTON said this applies to nonprofits also, and a nonprofit would be any kind of a corporation not for profit. Number 176 REPRESENTATIVE JAMES said the ownership has to be 100 percent disabled. Nonprofit may not necessarily have an identified ownership. She would defer the question to Dugan Petty. Number 181 DUGAN PETTY, DIRECTOR, DIVISION OF GENERAL SERVICES, DEPARTMENT OF ADMINISTRATION, stated that employment programs receive a 15 percent Alaska preference. When this law was established, it set out a separate preference for employment programs. They can't double on the preference, but they do receive a 15 percent preference in addition to the Alaska bidders preference. Number 190 REPRESENTATIVE ELTON asked if it would be appropriate to move the work draft for committee's consideration. CHAIRMAN KOTT said he would entertain a motion. Number 194 REPRESENTATIVE ELTON made a motion to adopt work draft 9LSO992\G. Number 196 CHAIRMAN KOTT asked if there were any objections in adopting the work draft version G, dated 4-10-95. Hearing none, the work draft was adopted. He asked Mr. Petty if he had any comments. Number 202 MR. PETTY said he had nothing more to add. Number 208 STAN RIDGEWAY, DEPUTY DIRECTOR, DIVISION OF VOCATIONAL REHABILITATION, DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION (DOE), stated that the division supports HB 288. The division added the fiscal note because, over the past few months, they have had many inquiries from people who have just found the law on the books. People have tried hiring employees as brokers in order to receive a bidder preference. While they support corporations that are wholly owned, receiving a bidder preference they feel they would be dealing with other companies or corporations trying to get their foot in the door. This will require a lot of screening on the division's part. Since the division doesn't know for certain how much time this screening would take, they would go on record that if the committee moves HB 288 without the fiscal note, the division might come back next year and tell the committee how much time it has taken. Number 231 REPRESENTATIVE MASEK asked what Mr. Ridgeway thought the amount might be, and would it be used for full-time employees. Number 234 MR. RIDGEWAY said the amount was $23,000, for a half time clerical person to do the screening and follow-up on the preferences. Number 239 REPRESENTATIVE ELTON inquired if a fiscal note had been prepared but not yet submitted. MR. RIDGEWAY replied it has been submitted. REPRESENTATIVE ELTON asked if there was a House Finance Committee referral. CHAIRMAN KOTT said it would need a House Finance Committee referral. REPRESENTATIVE ELTON said he didn't have a copy of the fiscal note. CHAIRMAN KOTT took a brief at ease at 3:20 p.m., while copies were made. Number 256 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG asked if the 15 percent preference was added onto the 10 percent. Number 266 MR. PETTY said the question was, "What about nonprofits or employment programs, previously called shelter workshops?" REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG said that wasn't his question. Number 270 MR. PETTY said the question he was responding to was regarding the 15 percent. There is a separate preference in statute that allows employment programs to receive a 15 percent preference, in addition to the Alaska bidders preference, if they compete on bids issued by the state. Number 273 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG said he had asked the question because it wasn't entirely clear. Number 277 MR. PETTY explained that it wasn't clear from the CS because there wasn't any reference to the employment program preference. Number 279 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG noted for the record that this was 10 percent plus 5 percent for a total of 15 percent. Number 283 MR. PETTY said it first applies the 5 percent Alaska bidder preference. Then, if the qualified bidder is no more than 15 percent above the lowest bidder, after applying the Alaskan bidder preference, they would win the bid. He commented that it doesn't necessarily work out to exactly 15 percent. REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG said it was 10 percent in the draft. MR. PETTY said that was correct. He restated it was 5 percent with the Alaska bidders preference. If that bid is within 10 percent of the lowest bid after application of the 5 percent bidder preference, they would receive the bid. REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG said he was glad he asked the question. CHAIRMAN KOTT asked if that had addressed his concerns. REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG replied yes, and it was also on the record. Number 297 CHAIRMAN KOTT asked Representative James if she had further comments. Number 300 REPRESENTATIVE JAMES stated she would like to dispute the fiscal note. She thought perhaps the department could be persuaded to withdraw it. The statute hasn't had much activity since it has been on the books from 1991. It is true there may be more activity now, but she hesitates to say its because of this bill. The number of people having 100 percent disabled owned corporations and partnerships might be limited. She suggested that it not have a fiscal note; it could be absorbed by existing staff and Vocational Rehabilitation. She asked of the DOE would consider withdrawing the note. CHAIRMAN KOTT asked Mr. Ridgeway to explain the fiscal note again. Number 314 MR. RIDGEWAY replied they had prepared the fiscal note prior to the current language change, which states a person must be in business for six months. The department anticipated they would have people brokering, which is the hiring of people with disabilities as brokers, who then bid state contracts. The disabled wouldn't be full-time employees. He stated that the new language prevents that. Therefore, they would have a smaller number applying for the contract because the loop hole has been tightened. They would withdraw the fiscal note at this time. Number 333 REPRESENTATIVE ELTON had a procedural question on how the committee would dismiss the fiscal note. Number 340 CHAIRMAN KOTT said he wasn't sure, having never gone through this. He thought it should be sufficient to have the fiscal note withdrawn on the record. Number 342 REPRESENTATIVE MASEK made a motion to remove the fiscal note on HB 288 and to move the bill without the note. Number 345 CHAIRMAN KOTT asked if there were objections. Hearing none, the note was withdrawn. Number 348 REPRESENTATIVE ELTON made a motion to move CSHB 288(L&C) with attached zero fiscal note from the Department of Administration with individual recommendations. Number 358 CHAIRMAN KOTT asked if there were objections. Hearing none, CSHB 288(L&C) passed from committee.