Legislature(2019 - 2020)BARNES 124

02/21/2020 03:15 PM LABOR & COMMERCE

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* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
+= HB 113 MILITARY FAMILY EMPLOYMENT PREFERENCE TELECONFERENCED
Heard & Held
+= HB 24 LIMITED TEACHER CERTIFICATES; LANGUAGES TELECONFERENCED
<Bill Hearing Canceled>
+= HB 229 HEALTH INFORMATION/DATABASE/PUBLIC CORP. TELECONFERENCED
Heard & Held
-- Testimony <Invitation Only> --
*+ HB 235 AK WORKFORCE INVESTMENT BOARD:ALLOCATIONS TELECONFERENCED
Heard & Held
-- Testimony <Invitation Only> --
+ Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled TELECONFERENCED
          HB 113-MILITARY FAMILY EMPLOYMENT PREFERENCE                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
3:20:23 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SPOHNHOLZ announced that the  first order of business would                                                               
be  HOUSE   BILL  NO.  113,   "An  Act  relating   to  employment                                                               
preferences  for  spouses  and  children  of  veterans,  disabled                                                               
veterans,  former  prisoners  of  war, members  of  the  national                                                               
guard, and deceased service members."                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
3:23:34 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  SHARON  JACKSON,  Alaska  State  Legislature,  as                                                               
prime sponsor, stated  the purpose of HB 113 is  to extend hiring                                                               
preferences  to  military  spouses,  which would  allow  them  to                                                               
receive an  interview for a job  that hires by a  numerical point                                                               
system.     This  will  enable   the  educated,   unemployed  and                                                               
underemployed [military] spouses  to work in the  community.  She                                                               
said  this   is  a  bill   that  will  provide  them   with  more                                                               
opportunities.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
3:24:36 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  SPOHNHOLZ  moved  to  adopt   Amendment  1,  [labeled  31-                                                               
LS0715\S.1, Wayne, 2/19/20], which read as follows:                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
     Page 6, line 29:                                                                                                           
          Delete "of this subsection;"                                                                                      
          Insert "or (1)(A)(iii) of this subsection, or the                                                                 
     spouse or dependent child of a person who is in active                                                                 
        service or on furlough from active service under                                                                    
     (1)(A)(i) of this subsection;"                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE STUTES objected for the purpose of discussion.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE JACKSON deferred to Pam Day.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
3:25:18 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
PAM DAY,  Classification Services Manager, Division  of Personnel                                                               
and  Labor Relations,  Department of  Administration, provided  a                                                               
brief background on the state's  recruitment system.  She said in                                                               
July 2000,  the state stopped  scoring applications  and switched                                                               
to  a   vacancy-based  recruitment  system,  which   changed  how                                                               
preferences  are  applied.    If  an  assessment  device  with  a                                                               
numerical rating is  not used, 10-point veterans  are afforded an                                                               
interview   and  5-point   veterans   are  given   consideration.                                                               
Nonetheless, she  said it's  been a common  practice to  offer an                                                               
interview  to  5-point  veterans.     HB  113  would  extend  the                                                               
preference of being awarded an  interview to 5-point veterans, as                                                               
well as military spouses and dependent children.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  SPOHNHOLZ  asked for  the  definition  of a  vacancy-based                                                               
system.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
MS. DAY explained that when  a vacancy arises, recruitment ensues                                                               
immediately,  which  is  a  more  streamlined  process  than  the                                                               
state's prior hiring system.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SPOHNHOLZ  acknowledged that filling vacancies  faster is a                                                               
good idea.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
3:27:40 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  HANNAN questioned  whether  the  point system  is                                                               
based on  a 100-point  scale and  whether points  and percentages                                                               
are interchangeable.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MS. DAY answered  yes.  She added, "it's 5  percent of the points                                                               
available from a scoring device - or 10 percent."                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HANNAN asked if it's based on a 100-point scale.                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MS. DAY said yes.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  HANNAN questioned  the  difference  between a  5-                                                               
point veteran and a 10-point veteran.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
MS.  DAY explained  that, "if  we do  not use  a scoring  system,                                                               
which we do not, if a veteran  who would have been awarded the 10                                                               
points in  the scoring  - which  is the  disabled veteran  or the                                                               
prisoner of war - they are offered the interview."                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
3:28:58 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  JACKSON  said,  "this  bill is  for  active  duty                                                               
spouses  and spouses  of those  that died  in war,  or Gold  Star                                                               
families.  So, this bill is just extending to the spouses"                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  SPOHNHOLZ  surmised  that the  [hiring]  preference  would                                                               
elevate an  applicant, rather than award  them a 5 or  10 percent                                                               
advantage.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
MS. DAY affirmed that.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
3:29:51 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  HANNAN questioned  the  difference  between a  5-                                                               
point veteran and a 10-point veteran.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  JACKSON  replied  that  it  correlates  to  their                                                               
disability.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MS. DAY  responding to a  follow-up question  from Representative                                                               
Hannan,  said AS  39.25.159 [Employment  Preference for  Veterans                                                               
and Former  Prisoners of War] articulates  that disabled veterans                                                               
or  prisoners of  war are  awarded  an interview  or 10  percent,                                                               
whereas veterans or  members of the National Guard  are awarded 5                                                               
percent or considered for an interview.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SPOHNHOLZ questioned  whether the 5 percent  and 10 percent                                                               
distinction also applied to the spouse.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
MS. DAY said this bill  expands the interview benefit to veterans                                                               
and  members  of the  National  Guard,  as  well as  to  military                                                               
spouses and dependent children.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
3:32:40 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE FIELDS clarified that  under HB 113, every spouse,                                                               
dependent child, and  veteran would be afforded  an interview for                                                               
a state job for which they applied.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
MS. DAY replied yes, if they meet the minimum qualifications.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  FIELDS asked  if they  would receive  up to  a 10                                                               
percent higher score than other applicants.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MS. DAY said it  can be either or.  She  directed attention to AS                                                               
39.25.159, which states  that if an assessment device  is used to                                                               
score  applicants then  the 10-points  can  be applied;  however,                                                               
because Alaska doesn't use an  assessment device the interview is                                                               
guaranteed.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  FIELDS questioned  whether  this  bill should  be                                                               
rewritten to  ensure an interview.   He asked if that  would be a                                                               
simpler way  to write it.   He expressed concern with  awarding a                                                               
10-point  advantage to  someone,  should the  state  revert to  a                                                               
point-based scoring system.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
3:34:27 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE JACKSON said HB 113  is offering preference points                                                               
to the  spouses and family  members of  Gold Star families.   She                                                               
added  that it  specifically speaks  to preference  points for  a                                                               
spouse.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE FIELDS said he understands.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
3:35:33 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
DAN  WAYNE,  Attorney,  Legislative Legal  Services,  Legislative                                                               
Affairs Agency,  attempted to  provide context to  page 6  of the                                                               
bill.    He  stated  that  under  current  law,  AS  39.25.159(a)                                                               
entitles a  veteran or  former prisoner  of war  - who  meets the                                                               
minimum  qualifications -  to an  employment preference  of which                                                               
there are  two kinds.  When  hiring based on a  numerical rating,                                                               
veterans  get 5  points added  to their  score, whereas  disabled                                                               
veterans  or  formers  prisoners  of war  get  an  additional  10                                                               
points.    When  hiring  is  not based  on  a  numerical  system,                                                               
consideration  is  awarded  to veterans  and  an  opportunity  to                                                               
interview is  afforded to disabled veterans  and former prisoners                                                               
of  war.    He  explained  that  under  HB  113,  those  [hiring]                                                               
preferences  would  extend  to  military  spouses  and  dependent                                                               
children.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SPOHNHOLZ asked what Amendment 1 accomplishes.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
3:38:56 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. VERHAGEN  stated that Amendment 1  affords qualified military                                                               
spouses  or dependent  children the  right to  an interview.   He                                                               
explained  that   if,  for  example,   there  are   10  qualified                                                               
candidates, the  department doesn't have  to interview all  10 of                                                               
them; however, they "shall" award  a military spouse or dependent                                                               
child with an interview.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  SPOHNHOLZ  sought to  clarify  whether  Amendment 1  would                                                               
require that a  military spouse or dependent child  is awarded an                                                               
interview if they meet the minimum qualifications.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
MR. VERHAGEN answered yes.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
3:40:23 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE FIELDS  suggested rewriting the bill  to ensure an                                                               
interview without  giving the same  numeric point advantage  to a                                                               
spouse or dependent in the event  there is a numeric system being                                                               
used.                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SPOHNHOLZ pointed  out that it would be  a very substantial                                                               
amendment to this bill.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
3:40:56 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HANNAN  attempted to  clarify whether  Amendment 1                                                               
awards "everybody" with an interview.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
3:41:24 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR.  VERHAGEN stated  that those  under [subsection]  (i) get  an                                                               
interview as well  as those under (3)(i), which  is the surviving                                                               
spouse or  dependent of a  person who was  killed in action.   He                                                               
went on  to say, "so this  amendment is not actually  even giving                                                               
the right  to an interview  to a spouse  or dependent child  of a                                                               
veteran,  but  only an  active  duty     someone described     in                                                               
section (A)(i), so who is in  active service or on furlough.  So,                                                               
Representative Jackson's  intent was to  not afford the  right to                                                               
an  interview  to veterans,  spouses,  and  dependents, but     a                                                               
spouse  who's married  to an  active  duty member  or someone  on                                                               
furlough, if that makes sense."                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MR.   VERHAGEN   responding   to  a   follow-up   question   from                                                               
Representative Hannan,  said both the veteran  and current active                                                               
duty military spouse will be awarded an interview.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
3:43:22 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE FIELDS asked Mr. Wayne  if it would be possible to                                                               
rewrite this section  to clarify that interviews  are afforded to                                                               
spouses  and dependents  of active  duty service  members without                                                               
adding multiple references  to points, which is  conflicting.  He                                                               
questioned  whether  it  could  be  written  to  be  shorter  and                                                               
clearer.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
3:43:53 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. WAYNE  reiterated that if HB  113 does not pass,  current law                                                               
states that if  there is an assessment using  numerical ratings -                                                               
which could happen  tomorrow - then the 5  or 10-point preference                                                               
will apply  to veterans,  former prisoners  of war,  and disabled                                                               
veterans.   When there's not a  numeric assessment, consideration                                                               
or  an  interview  applies.    He  reminded  the  committee  that                                                               
consideration and receiving an interview  are two separate things                                                               
according to  the law,  regardless of  how the  administration is                                                               
putting them  into practice, which  is subject to  change through                                                               
regulation.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE FIELDS  stated that  while he is  comfortable with                                                               
awarding  consideration,  he  is uncomfortable  with  the  points                                                               
incentive.  He  requested an extension on  the amendment deadline                                                               
to refine a solution.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
3:47:35 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SPOHNHOLZ withdrew Amendment 1.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
MR.  VERHAGEN in  response to  Representative Fields,  emphasized                                                               
that under  HB 113, the  only people  that "shall" receive  a 10-                                                               
point preference are disabled veterans.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  SPOHNHOLZ   assured  Mr.   Verhagen  that   the  committee                                                               
understands that point.   The question is whether  to continue to                                                               
reference a numerical system that  is not currently used in state                                                               
law, she explained.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
3:49:40 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HANNAN moved to adopt Amendment 2, [labeled 31-                                                                  
LS0715\S.2, Wayne, 2/20/20], which read as follows:                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
     Page 6, lines 18 - 19:                                                                                                     
          Delete "the surviving spouse or a dependent child                                                                 
     of a person who"                                                                                                       
          Insert "a dependent child or, unless the                                                                          
      surviving spouse has remarried, the surviving spouse                                                                  
          of a person who died within a 10-year period                                                                      
     immediately preceding the date of the assessment and"                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SPOHNHOLZ objected for the purpose of discussion.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HANNAN explained that Amendment 2 proposes a 10-                                                                 
year limit on  the benefit for the surviving  spouse or dependent                                                               
children in the event of a service member's death.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
3:50:17 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE JACKSON opined that  Amendment 2 is reasonable and                                                               
acceptable.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
3:50:43 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SPOHNHOLZ withdrew  her objection.  There  being no further                                                               
objection, Amendment 2 was adopted.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SPOHNHOLZ announced that HB 113 was held over.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
HB 229 Bill Text Version M.pdf HHSS 2/20/2020 3:00:00 PM
HL&C 2/21/2020 3:15:00 PM
HB 229
HB 229 Sectional Analysis v.M.pdf HHSS 2/20/2020 3:00:00 PM
HL&C 2/21/2020 3:15:00 PM
HB 229
HB 229 Sponsor Statement v.M.pdf HHSS 2/20/2020 3:00:00 PM
HL&C 2/21/2020 3:15:00 PM
HB 229
HB 229 and supporting documents.pdf HL&C 2/20/2020 3:00:00 PM
HL&C 2/21/2020 3:15:00 PM
HB 229
HB 229 Testimony Dr. Cullen CV.pdf HL&C 2/21/2020 3:15:00 PM
HB 229
HB229 Testimony Dr. Cullens.pdf HL&C 2/21/2020 3:15:00 PM
HB 229
HB 113 v. S Amendment #1 HL&C 2.21.2020.pdf HL&C 2/21/2020 3:15:00 PM
HB 113
HB 113 v. S Amendment #2 HL&C 2.21.2020.pdf HL&C 2/21/2020 3:15:00 PM
HB 113
HB 113 Powerpoint The Blue Star and Gold Star Families Act 1.31.20.pdf HL&C 2/19/2020 3:15:00 PM
HL&C 2/21/2020 3:15:00 PM
HB 113
HB113 Backup Document NCSL veterans' state hiring preference 1.31.20.pdf HL&C 2/19/2020 3:15:00 PM
HL&C 2/21/2020 3:15:00 PM
HB 113
HB 235 Fiscal Note DOLWFD-AVTEC 2.14.2020.pdf HL&C 2/21/2020 3:15:00 PM
HB 235
HB 235 Fiscal Note DOLWFD-CAS 2.15.2020.pdf HL&C 2/21/2020 3:15:00 PM
HB 235
HB 235 Fiscal Note DOLWFD-WD 2.14.2020.pdf HL&C 2/21/2020 3:15:00 PM
HB 235
HB 235 Fiscal Note DOLWFD-UI 2.14.2020.pdf HL&C 2/21/2020 3:15:00 PM
HB 235
HB 235 Fiscal Note EED-SSA 2.14.2020.pdf HL&C 2/21/2020 3:15:00 PM
HB 235
HB 235 Fiscal Note UA-SYSBRA 2.18.2020.pdf HL&C 2/21/2020 3:15:00 PM
HB 235
HB 235 Sponsor Statement 2.21.2020.pdf HL&C 2/21/2020 3:15:00 PM
HL&C 3/9/2020 3:15:00 PM
HB 235
HB 235.Backup Flow Chart 2.21.2020.pdf HL&C 2/21/2020 3:15:00 PM
HL&C 3/9/2020 3:15:00 PM
HB 235
HB 235.Backup UA TVEP Advocacy 2.21.2020.pdf HL&C 2/21/2020 3:15:00 PM
HB 235
HB 235 Backup Distribution Sheet 2.5.2020.pdf HL&C 2/21/2020 3:15:00 PM
HB 235
HB 235 TVEP Annual Report 2019.pdf HL&C 2/21/2020 3:15:00 PM
HB 235
HB 235 Backup Intro Presentation 2.21.2020.pdf HL&C 2/21/2020 3:15:00 PM
HB 235
AHCTP House L and C 2.21.20.pdf HL&C 2/21/2020 3:15:00 PM
HB 229
HB 235 UA TVEP Background Information.pdf HL&C 2/21/2020 3:15:00 PM
HB 235
HB 235 TVEP Univ. of Alaska Presentation 02.20.20.pdf HL&C 2/21/2020 3:15:00 PM
HB 235