Legislature(1999 - 2000)
04/27/1999 08:07 AM STA
* first hearing in first committee of referral
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
SB 33-TASK FORCE ON PRIVATIZATION CHAIR JAMES announced the first order of business is CSSB 33(FIN) "An Act relating to contracts for the performance of certain state functions previously performed by state employees and to the Commission on Privatization and Delivery of Government Services; and providing for an effective date." Number 018 PAM LaBOLLE, President, Alaska Chamber of Commerce, came before the committee noting that creating a task force on privatization has been a priority of the State Chamber. She mentioned that a proposal passed the legislature in 1997 and was vetoed by the Governor and in 1998 another proposal passed the Senate and made it to House Rules but ran out of time. MS. LaBOLLE said the State Chamber held a seminar and invited national experts to find out what was going on around the country because privatization is something that governments are looking at all over the country. She cited that the initiative to privatize Alaska's correctional facilities was the outcome of that seminar. The following year the State Chamber held another seminar which focused on the Department of Transportation and Public Facilities (DOT/PF). She stated, "What we learned in our first seminar was that there's privatization which is when a state completely divests itself of a business it is in (of providing a service or doing a function) and they just don't do it anymore and someone in the private sector picks it up. And then there's outsourcing where the state's still paying for it but they're having someone else in the private sector do it. And then, of course, there is managed competition and that is where the state could put something out for bid and the state's own agency would bid along with the private sector to see who could have the 'sharpest pencil' and do the job for the best price and with the greatest efficiency." Number 129 MS. LaBOLLE referred to information which she had distributed [available in the packet]. She said the first page relates to the privatization trends going on all over the country; it shows that almost 59 percent of the states were increasing their activities in privatization and that another 55.2 percent plan to increase it over the next five years. The next page shows that the State of Alaska was hiring in-house, doing more than was probably necessary and that it was duplicative. For example there is a lot of private-sector engineers who are registered who have to have the same minimal level of training, who have to reach the same requirements, and they felt the work should go out. Ms. LaBolle further stated, "Knowing that there would be a great influx of federal dollars coming in on the highways this year, the Chamber did a survey of private engineering firms ... to find out (here in the state) what availability they had because the DOT/PF says frequently when they want to do a job they have to have someone on staff because there's no one available in the private sector to do it." She said the State Chamber asked the private sector, by DOT/PF region: How many professional do they have, could they move their people from one region to another if needed, and was their workload such that they could take on this work on the highways and the response was overwhelming. She said they were immediately interested in responding to this survey and it showed that they have plenty of people to do the work. The reason the State Chamber conducted the survey was so that there wouldn't be any immediate hiring of more on-staff, in-house engineers in the department [DOT/PF] when there are private sector people ready to do the work. She also mentioned other reports show that companies are putting data processing, payroll and such out to privatization. Number 222 MS. LaBOLLE referred to an article in the Alaska Business Monthly Magazine. She said Governor Hammond asked for the business community to help him see what actions they could take to reduce the cost of state spending because it had taken a mighty leap in the previous two years. She said she thinks it might have had something to do with the fact that the oil was flowing down the pipeline about that time. Ms. LaBolle pointed out that 55 business executives were lent to the state by corporations within Alaska and those individuals (she believes) worked for 12 weeks and came up with 362 recommendations, of which 247 of those were immediately implemented. She further noted that $44 million was saved by the implementation of those (indisc.) benefits, and that was in 1978. MS. LaBOLLE mentioned Arkansas put together the "Murphy Commission" in which 100 to 150 citizens and business leaders volunteered to look at their state government. She emphasized that the State Chamber will be holding another seminar on June 25 to redefine Alaska's government and that they intend to invite someone from groups such as the "Murphy Commission" to explain how it's working and what they've accomplished. They also intend to invite someone from Alberta to explain how they came about spending their permanent fund, how they continued to fund government, and how they reorganized. Number 296 MS. LaBOLLE indicated the population of Alaska has increased a little over 50 percent and that state spending has increased by nearly 300 percent. She said the State Chamber thinks, "We don't have the money any more and we need to reprioritize and look at what the state's responsibilities are, the things that must be done, and the things that the state shouldn't be in the business of doing any more." MS. LaBOLLE further stated that, "The work draft [version V] I know has removed the part about the contracting that it's not negotiable with the -- if the state is going to be able to have someone other than state employees do something the state employees have been doing. We did not promote that in the legislation when it was in the Senate, however, I know why the Senate put it in - was because, as you heard ... it had been negotiated in state contracts where there has to be a feasibility study and ... that those can cost between $20 and $50,000 a piece. It was my understanding ... that it had to show a 10 percent savings before it could go out to someone else, and of course, we kept asking the question, why, why. I think it was 11 print shop workers - why couldn't we do away [with] the print shop and what was keeping the state from doing that, and it's my understanding that that had to do with the negotiated contracts. There wasn't a feasibility [study] and there wasn't all of that. So how it becomes part of the requirements that in negotiating that you take that into consideration, or you don't negotiate your right ... of state government, I don't know. But that is the back ground for that." Number 366 REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON noted that whole effort was the Governor's initiative, the executive branch of government as opposed to what we're dealing with now. The legislature is essentially underwriting a complete review of privatization. He asked if the State Chamber communicated with the Governor and has the Governor initiated efforts to try to pass this kind of legislation or move the state more and more into the privatization fields. MS. LaBOLLE said they talked to Governor Knowles at the beginning of this legislative session and their understanding was that he was more amenable to privatization than he had been in the past. She believes the difference between now and two years ago is the price of oil. Ms. LaBolle further stated, "If you think you have the money, it's one thing to not want to go in this direction versus actually deciding that some things got to be done and you have to find ways to create efficiencies and perhaps not through some of things you've been doing in the past." Number 423 REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON said privatization has been ongoing for a long period of time and his big concern is that, "Let's be careful that we don't replace a resident state employee with a nonresident private employee," because an awful lot of people come from the Lower-48 to get rich on Alaska's dollars. He said he assumed the State Chamber still supports resident hire. MS. LaBOLLE confirmed Alaska hire is a priority of the State Chamber. She asked, how many of us came here because there was a job and saw how wonderful it was and made it our home. How many "Coasties" [Coast guardsmen] come and make this their home. She said, "I think it's important that we create opportunities for people. And the thing is private sector, you know corporations pay their corporate taxes and the tax - we end up with an inverted pyramid if we have too many government workers and down here at the point is the ones who are paying to support the government. And that's going to tip if it becomes to be too top-heavy. So we've got to build that base of private-sector economic opportunities." CHAIR JAMES noted that she came to Alaska to find a job and that local hire is a tough issue because we want to be sure all of our people are working before we bring people in for jobs. However, we have no real control over this because we're part of the U.S., so our doors are open. Chair James reiterated, "It ought to be that way, we just ought to be very careful when we walk down that road to be sure that we don't displace a lot of folks and replace them with someone else who will work cheaper, or is not even as qualified as they are." Number 491 BARBARA COTTING, Legislative Assistant to Representative Jeannette James, came forward to explain the proposed committee substitute. She said she and the bill drafter (Tam Cook) agreed that it would be easier to continue working from version V rather than hurriedly drafting another CS. She said she will go through the new CS and tell the members how version V changes version S. Number 513 REPRESENTATIVE COGHILL moved to adopt HCS CSSB 33, Version LS0317\V, Cook, 4/21/99, as the working document before the committee. There being no objection, it was so ordered. MS. COTTING referred to the two amendments which were incorporated into Version V. Per Representative Ogan's request, the duties of the commission now include the determination that there may be duties of the government that should cease. This language was inserted on page 2, line 8 and on page 4. Ms. Cotting noted that the language should also be inserted on the last page before the last two sections. Therefore, paragraph (5) needs to be inserted before Section 8. MS. COTTING explained Section 2 of Version S was completely eliminated per Representative Whitaker's request. She explained that Section 2 (in the original bill) would have eliminated collective bargaining from this process. Therefore, the deletion of Section 2 allows collective bargaining as a part of the process. She noted that there are conforming changes to accommodate the elimination of Section 2. MS. COTTING said Representative Whitaker's amendment deleted the following language, "the labor or employee organization may prepare and submit a response to demonstrate the state will not reduce costs." That language was replaced with language saying that "the affected agency or department must prepare a written review of the contract proposal setting out its benefits and detriments." REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON inquired as to the page and line to which Ms. Cotting is referring. MS. COTTING directed the committee to page 2, lines 17-23 or Section 2. The language on page 2, lines 21-23 replaces the following language, "the labor or employee organization may prepare a report". Perhaps, that needs to be revisited. Number 578 MS. COTTING referred to page 3, lines 13-16, Section 3 which deals with the compensation for members of the commission. She noted that Tamara Cook, Director, Legislative Legal and Research Services, Legislative Affairs Agency, had informed her of a problem in this section. Originally, the section only provided a per diem for members appointed by the Senate President and the House Speaker. In order to have clarity for the other members, Version V states that the other members of the commission do not receive any compensation, per diem, or travel. Therefore, the language in Version V does not provide compensation for the members of the commission, save the members appointed by the Senate President and the House Speaker. She believed that to be the intent desired by the committee. In response to Chair James, Ms. Cotting clarified that only the commission members appointed under paragraph (6) and (7) are entitled to per diem. This may need to be changed. However Ms. Cotting did note that in discussions with some of the organizations, there was indication that the organizations would be willing to pay the travel and per diem of their members. Ms. Cotting reiterated the need to insert the language "identify state functions that should be eliminated" after line 18 on page 4. Number 625 REPRESENTATIVE COGHILL inquired as to where that language was inserted earlier in Version V. MS. COTTING specified that the language was inserted on page 2, line 7 and page 4, line 6. She restated that the language may need to be inserted on page 4, after line 18. REPRESENTATIVE OGAN moved Amendment 1: Page 4, after line 18 Insert, "(5) eliminated as a function of state government" There being no objection, Amendment 1 was adopted. CHAIR JAMES directed the committee to page 2, line 17, Section 2. She said the collective bargaining process was reinstated. Chair James understood the collective bargaining agreement to read that before chores of state employees can be outsourced, there has to be a feasibility study. The feasibility study must illustrate a 10 percent reduction in cost in order to outsource. JUANITA HENSLEY, Administrator, Division of Motor Vehicles, Department of Administration, explained that the current contract does not specify a 10 percent cost savings. The contract only requires a feasibility study and the illustration of cost savings to the state before any state employee can be replaced. CHAIR JAMES understood subsection (b) to mean that before the state can consider contracting out, there must be a feasibility study unless that is changed at the collective bargaining table. Chair James noted that the feasibility study could cost between $20,000 to $50,000. The language in subsection (b) says, "the affected agency or department must prepare a written review of the contract proposal setting out its benefits and detriments." Chair James was not sure this is part of the collective bargaining. She inquired as to the intent of Representative Whitaker with that language. Number 704 REPRESENTATIVE WHITAKER said that he felt the language in the original bill would have circumvented the collective bargaining process. Providing unlimited power to replace a collective bargaining unit is essentially the destruction of the collective bargaining process which is unacceptable. This language simply requires the collective bargaining process to continue as in the past. The state can still replace a unit of state function, but that cannot occur without the knowledge that doing so is in the state's best interest which would be determined through a written review and contract proposal specifying the benefits and detriments. CHAIR JAMES asked if Representative Whitaker intended the language to be a definition of what is to be included in the feasibility study under collective bargaining or is this a different study. REPRESENTATIVE WHITAKER clarified that this should not be viewed as a study on top of a study. Rather than replacing the collective bargaining process with an absolute authority, this requires that the collective bargaining process continue separately. Representative Whitaker said that if privatization is considered, the results of the privatization should be known before it occurs. REPRESENTATIVE OGAN pointed out that this is simply a task force that can only advise the legislature of its recommendations. CHAIR JAMES agreed with Representative Ogan, however this is statutory change. This legislation affords the opportunity to make procedure to be followed if the task force's recommendations were implemented. REPRESENTATIVE OGAN expressed concern with the statement that the task force has absolute unlimited authority. The absolute unlimited authority is only to make recommendations. CHAIR JAMES clarified that the insertion in SB 33 specified that the state has unrestricted authority which is a statutory change. She asked if this language was necessary since the feasibility study is required under collective bargaining. REPRESENTATIVE WHITAKER said that it is a judgement call. Representative Whitaker expressed the need to seriously consider the benefits and detriments of a decision changing the manner in which the state does business. He noted that this does not relate to the collective bargaining process. REPRESENTATIVE COGHILL said he believed this to be appropriate because this is something that is understood in collective bargaining, but not included in statute. CHAIR JAMES said that Section 2(b) on page 2 seems to place what the agency does in statute for the consideration of contracting out a state employee function. She noted that it does not have the same language as she was told is in the collective bargaining. Chair James inquired as to whether Mr. Etheridge is comfortable with the language. Number 792 DON ETHERIDGE, District Council of Laborers, said that there are not two requirements. This language provides more definition regarding what is required. This would not require two studies. He indicated that he is comfortable with the language. REPRESENTATIVE KERTTULA noted the section regarding the union's and the employee's ability to respond to a report. She inquired as to the rights under the current contract. MR. ETHERIDGE explained that under the current contracts, most have a grievance procedure. If the state does not provide the information required by contract, a grievance procedure can occur. Mr. Etheridge believed that right would remain. The requirement in Section 2(b) would give all the information required under the contract. REPRESENTATIVE KERTTULA asked if this part of the collective bargaining negotiations, requiring a written report by the state agency, is codified, should the employee's right to respond be codified as well. REPRESENTATIVE WHITAKER said that he has not had a chance to think about that and would not want to do it "off the cuff." REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON believed that this is appropriate to place in the Public Employees Relations Act (PERA). The state negotiates with various unions and often there are different provisions. Therefore, placing a general requirement in statute allows the requirement to be amplified within the contract itself. Representative Hudson commented that had this language been in statute the closure of the print shop probably would not have occurred because the final report indicated that closure would actually end up costing money. CHAIR JAMES said that she was now convinced of the necessity of the language. REPRESENTATIVE SMALLEY inquired as to the make up of the committee. Nine of the 11 positions have been established by this legislation. Of the nine, seven are established by the governing majority. The chair of the committee is established by the governing majority. Representative Smalley expressed concern regarding the compensation of the committee members. He said the committee members should be treated equally. He also inquired as to the time frame for the cost savings projections. TAPE 99-30, SIDE B Number 002 CHAIR JAMES ..."goes up and keeps on going so a decision might be made to whether or not to take this bleep we've got here and put it out to contract as opposed to hiring new folks into the agency. " That would be a short-term savings. She doesn't believe they can specifically say if it is something that this agency is doing, use the print shop as an example, because they could contract out the printing or they could have the print shop. If they are going to do that and lay off all these folks, then they're looking at a long-term savings. She said she doesn't know if that responds to their concern and she doesn't know that there is anything to do about it because it would be so specific to the kind of consideration that is being given. Number 033 REPRESENTATIVE SMALLEY said it would probably be the committee's recommendation as to whether it is a short-term or a long-term benefit to the state, and that is what concerns him about the committee makeup. CHAIR JAMES pointed out Section 2 where it says the review must address the quality of service and cost-effectiveness and may include other factors. There are other considerations that could go into that. She read through the list of the composition of the members of the commission: Two members appointed by the Governor, one of whom shall be a representative of the labor union. REPRESENTATIVE SMALLEY doesn't have a problem with that one. CHAIR JAMES read: One member of the Senate appointed by the President of the Senate who shall serve as co-chair. REPRESENTATIVE SMALLEY doesn't have a problem with the Senate president appointing someone, but he is not sure that that person should be the co-chair. CHAIR JAMES commented that this is a legislative task force so she assumes that it would be chaired by legislators. She continued: One member appointed by the Alaska Municipal League; no partisan politics there. One member of the Local Boundary Commission appointed by the Local Boundary Commission; no partisan politics there. Two public members appointed by the President of the Senate and two by the Speaker of the House. She asked him if he thought those four persons would be partisan. She said she believes they would have one from the majority and one from the minority, which is the way it has been done historically. REPRESENTATIVE SMALLEY noted that it doesn't say that though. CHAIR JAMES mentioned that when they had the Long-Term Financial Task Force, the appointees were made by the majority, but they were non-partisan, or there wasn't a partisan issue on that. She continued reading: One member appointed by the Chamber of Commerce. REPRESENTATIVE SMALLEY said he had no problem with that. CHAIR JAMES said she believes generally that the majority represents the public in the balance of power. When there are at least two members appointed by the President of the Senate, historically it always has been one from the majority and one from the minority in both cases. She said she believes it would be balanced. Number 114 REPRESENTATIVE SMALLEY commented that he would like to see it worded that way. CHAIR JAMES pointed out that they should be appointing people who have business backgrounds, some kind of business management or labor issues. It seems to her that if they pick the best people, partisan politics shouldn't enter into it at all. REPRESENTATIVE SMALLEY mentioned that the compensation for committee members needs to be fair and equitable for all. If per diem and/or travel is appropriate, it should be paid. CHAIR JAMES indicated that the members of the House and Senate will have their per diem and travel paid as a member of the House and Senate. She referred to testimony from Pam LaBolle and Representative Hudson from the time of former Governor Hammond's initiative of getting the loan from the business community to do a study that the business committee said they would do that. She assumes that these different groups would be happy to send somebody without compensation, or they can take care of the compensation themselves. Number 168 REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON asked if the two public members, appointed by the President of the Senate, and the two appointed by the Speaker of the House, are also entitled to per diem. CHAIR JAMES answered yes. REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON noted that four public members would be entitled to per diem, but the members from the municipal league and the Local Boundary Commission and the public members appointed by the Governor would not get per diem. He suggested that this needs to be uniformly applied so that they are all eligible for it. They don't have to take it if they don't want to, but the net value of what the product is going to be will be certainly worth a few days of per diem. CHAIR JAMES went on to say it seems to her that the Governor ought to be able to find two people willing to serve. She agrees that the public members appointed by the President of the Senate and the Speaker of the House seem to be a duplication, and they are the only ones that get per diem and travel expenses. This is the glitch they are trying to fix. It seems to her that the sponsor intended that those people, even though they are appointed, are probably volunteering to do this, that they don't get per diem. Those people who are appointed, not to limit those people, they might not have stepped up to serve if they aren't compensated. Number 229 MARK HODGINS, Legislative Assistant for Senator Jerry Ward, came forward to testify saying it is Senator Ward's intention that the folks who were appointed would receive per diem and travel costs. The fiscal note reflects that. On page 3, line 11, the commission may appoint an advisory council, there was no compensation whatsoever for that advisory council. The compensation was only in the form of per diem and travel for the members appointed by the Governor, the Senate President and the House Speaker. CHAIR JAMES asked Tam Cook to come forward to tell them if they have preserved the intent of the sponsor for the per diem. Number 255 TAMARA COOK, Director, Legislative Legal and Research Services, Legislative Affairs Agency, came forward to testify. She is not sure that they have preserved the intent of the sponsor. She reiterated what this does. If they are silent on the question of compensation, the public members would not be receiving compensation. Government employees, of course, get a salary. If they are silent on the question of per diem and travel expenses, then by operation of the AS 39.21.080, public members are entitled to per diem and travel normally. This is a difference from the normal statutory rule, in that they are limiting the payment of per diem and travel to only the identified public members. It is possible that the Governor will appoint a state worker. If it is the desire of the committee for the public members to get per diem and travel, and they wish to address it in this bill, if they are silent on the subject, she said she believes they would get it by operation of AS 39.21.080. If they wish to address it, they can also say something like the members appointed by the Governor, so long as they are not state employees. Number 287 CHAIR JAMES said she believes they are talking about the two people appointed by the Governor, one shall be the labor union, and that person could very well be a state employee. MS. COOK noted that the labor union employee who is serving on this commission, his time probably would not be paid by the state at that point. He would be serving potentially as a volunteer outside of his normal duties. If the Governor appoints a commissioner, then it is more likely to be viewed as within the duties of that commissioner. As to the individual appointed by the Local Boundary Commission, that individual as this is written, regardless whether or not he/she is a state employee, would not be entitled to per diem. As far as she knows, the Local Boundary Commission, being a state agency, does not have any outside source of funding, but it would be up to these people to volunteer both their time and the expenses. CHAIR JAMES asked Ms. Cook if the Local Boundary Commission get travel per diem when they go to their meetings, so they would get what they normally get. MS. COOK agreed that the Local Boundary Commission would. For the people appointed from private organizations such as the Alaska Municipal League, it would be up to the league to make whatever arrangements it chose to. CHAIR JAMES agreed that is the way it ought to be. REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON said he is not certain that unless the Local Boundary Commission is performing their duties as a member of the Local Boundary Commission they would be eligible for per diem and travel and conduct another business here that is silent about their travel and per diem. CHAIR JAMES said she believes that is the only reason they have this position because they are there, and she said she believes they are entitled because they are members of the Local Boundary Commission. MS. COOK agrees that the member of the Local Boundary Commission consists of the law that requires that a member be appointed and serve, that would be within the duty of that Local Boundary Commission member. Whatever the statutory compensation for the Local Boundary Commission is, would be a service of that individual. It is a legal requirement that a member be appointed and serve. Number 349 REPRESENTATIVE KERTTULA asked Ms. Cook if she would consider the Local Boundary Commission member a public member. MS. COOK answered no. CHAIR JAMES asked what is the bill's next referral. MR. HODGINS replied the Finance Committee. CHAIR JAMES suggested since that is a money issue, perhaps they could let it go to the Finance Committee. She is not necessarily interested in the other folks having per diem or travel expenses; the Finance Committee can choose whether they want to do this or not, and it is to their advantage to do it. Number 370 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN asked Ms. Cook if the title is broad enough to cover Section 2. MS. COOK answered because of the existence of Section 2, the first part of the title is necessary. They do have something that relates to contracts through the performance of these functions. She hopes this is what came over from the Senate. REPRESENTATIVE OGAN asked if this was germane as far as the single subject rule. MS. COOK said she believes it is so the way that the courts have so broadly construed single subject. It deals with basically state employment issues. REPRESENTATIVE KERTTULA asked Ms. Cook if she knows of any other commissions or boards that split the per diem according to what their status is. MS. COOK said she believes that the legislature does from time to time on boards of a temporary nature; they are often called task forces or commissions. They very often do include representatives of the public. They tend to be advisory groups; they do not perform anything other than an advisory function. Very often the legislature will single out the treatment of per diem and treat that issue of per diem differently from the normal rule. In some circumstances, the legislature has gotten so precise in the treatment of per diem that they opted to use the legislatively determined per diem number or travel expense number, which is different even from the statutory one. CHAIR JAMES mentioned that was so in the military task force and long-term financing task force. REPRESENTATIVE KERTTULA asked if they treat individuals differently within the group. MS. COOK said she believes that has occasionally occurred, particularly when there is representation from professional groups. The professional group will often take care of the expenses or determine that the individual will bear the expense. REPRESENTATIVE OGAN asked Mr. Hodgins how the sponsor feels about the new Section 2 and about the language in the original bill. Number 455 MR. HODGINS said Senator Ward originally set this bill up without those sections in it. He had originally decided that the problem isn't with state employees, per se, it is with the management that they must carry and charged to their activities when they are out doing whatever they do. The sponsor felt that there would be experts in this who are actually the state employees. They are the ones who have been delivering the front-line services, and they are the ones who know the efficiency and inefficiency within the organization. Senator Ward felt that the existing rules in the collective bargaining allowed for their voice to come out, and he felt that they would get a lot more value out of the snowplow folks, saying that they can do something at a certain price, if they are not having to carry the cost of a commissioner, deputy commissioner and all the directors that they carry. This is where they are looking at privatization or making the government more efficient, by not necessarily removing state employees but having them make suggestions about what they felt was the best way for them to deliver their services. REPRESENTATIVE OGAN asked if the sponsor supports the changes. MR. HODGINS said the sponsor supports the bill as long as there is a commission or task force going out and looking at how they deliver government services, with the concept that they are facing some tremendous deficits in the budget. They have to look at a different way of delivering government services to the people of the state. Number 497 REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON moved Amendment 2 which changes the date from January 1, 2000 to January 1, 2001. REPRESENTATIVE OGAN objected for purposes of discussion. REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON said he said he believes that this may be the most important single study that the state has done in 24 years. They have been fumbling with it in the legislature this year trying to identify consolidation of state agencies, elimination of functions, changes to collective bargaining, they are doing these things as a body, and now for the first time, somebody has come up and said let's put together a committee and look at all of the functions of government and come back to the legislature and Governor and recommend which can be transferred to the private sector, local government, federal government, consolidated, eliminated, which should remain the responsibility of the state, get public comment, and they are asking them to do all of this by January 1, 2000. They won't even go through a winter to find out whether or not they are plowing the roads efficiently. If they keep that date, they will end up with only a paper track. He said he believes it would be better to come back with something of quality, and that commission will need time at least until 2001. REPRESENTATIVE OGAN maintained his objection to the amendment because there are no guarantees that the current legislature will be back after next year. He would like something he can put his teeth into next January to take substantive action on and make some of the reforms of downsizing and elimination in state government. He agrees with Representative Hudson, but he believes they could reinstate the task force as written and extend the sunset date for another year if they wanted to. He wants a report he can look at. Number 561 CHAIR JAMES agreed they wouldn't get a comprehensive written report in that length of time, and she asked if they might have an interim report in 2000 and then have it finalized in 2001. She asked Pam LaBolle to respond to that. MS. LaBOLLE said the commission done under Governor Hammond was done in 12 weeks. She noted that an extension would have an impact on the fiscal note. Her concern is that this is a legislative commission, and it goes beyond this legislature if they take it until the end of next year instead of the end of this year. She agrees with Representative Hudson that it is very important and is great if they have the time, but with the two-year window to work in, where they use one year to set it up, they need to get a report to the legislature so actions can be taken if this legislature decides that the commission has come up with some good recommendations. Number 591 CHAIR JAMES asked Representative Hudson if they could just change the date on line 19. REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON answered that that would defeat his intentions which were to have a complete report for the legislature. He doesn't see any reason to have a complete report submitted by 2000 and keep the group together until 2001. He understands Representative Ogan's concerns, and he would like to see this thing as soon as possible too. When Governor Hammond's review took place, and it was a "quick track" review where a totally new government had just come to Juneau. He was part of it, and they were overwhelmed. Governor Hammond wisely brought in this group of business people from all over the state, and they went through all the departments before the people were outgoing, and in some cases had already left, and then tried to analyze the whole thing from a business perspective and then present it to a brand new government, who in turn, delivered it to all of us newly appointed officials. He said he believes that is a different situation. CHAIR JAMES agreed it sounds like an entirely different situation, but most of the industry loaned their very fine folks who worked intensely. She doesn't believe this is a full-time commission. REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON indicated that if it is going to be something meaningful, he said he believes it has to give meaningful consideration to how well the services are performed and calling for audits and fiscal analysis. They are talking about a group coming back in and recommending drastically modifying the Alaska Marine Highway System, for example. CHAIR JAMES commented that that sounds like someone the Governor should put on his staff, and that is not happening so the legislature is doing this instead. Number 635 REPRESENTATIVE COGHILL agreed a full study should be done, but he doesn't believe the current financial situation tolerates studying beyond 2000, to make sure they have a good framed issue of how to look at it needs to be done during this particular legislative watch. Urgency demands that if the commission can only look at it in generalities, the legislature needs to look into it more specifically. Number 655 REPRESENTATIVE KERTTULA commented that if they are going to do it right, they need to be going to the employees who are actually doing these jobs. She fears what will happen with this is that they will just sit in a room and move pieces of paper around because the jobs sound alike, they should be going together. It should be done right, and they should be given the time to do it right. The voters will decide who will be in the legislature, and she trusts that future legislators will look at the study and take it seriously if it is done right. Number 670 REPRESENTATIVE WHITAKER commented that there has been good debate on both sides of the issue, but this is their watch, and they should do what they can with the best information they have. A roll call vote was taken. Representatives Hudson, Smalley and Kerttula voted for the amendment. Representatives Ogan, Coghill, Whitaker and James voted against it. Therefore, Amendment 2 failed by a vote of 4-3. Number 683 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN made a motion to move HCS for CSSB 33, version 1-LSO317\V, Cook, 4/21/99, as amended, out of committee with individual recommendations and asterisked fiscal note. REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON objected. A roll call vote was taken. Representatives Ogan, Coghill, Whitaker and James voted in favor of moving the bill. Representatives Hudson, Smalley and Kerttula voted against it. Therefore, HCS for CSSB 33 moved from the House State Affairs Standing Committee by a vote of 4-3.