Legislature(2015 - 2016)CAPITOL 106

03/15/2016 08:00 AM STATE AFFAIRS

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* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
+= HB 273 VEHICLES: TRANSFER ON DEATH TITLE TELECONFERENCED
Moved CSHB 273 (STA) Out of Committee
+= HB 229 REPEAL ADMIN. REG. REVIEW COMMITTEE TELECONFERENCED
Heard & Held
+= HCR 15 UNIFORM RULES: REGULATION REVIEW TELECONFERENCED
Scheduled but Not Heard
*+ HB 162 DMV REVOCATION OF DRIVER'S LICENSE TELECONFERENCED
Moved HB 162 Out of Committee
+ Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled TELECONFERENCED
           HB 162-DMV REVOCATION OF DRIVER'S LICENSE                                                                        
                [Contains discussion of HB 205.]                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
8:57:19 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR LYNN announced that the final order of business would be                                                                  
HOUSE BILL NO. 162 "An Act relating to administrative revocation                                                                
of a driver's license; and repealing Rule 603(a)(3), Alaska                                                                     
Rules of Appellate Procedure."                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
8:57:32 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE TAMMY WILSON, Alaska State Legislature, as prime                                                                 
sponsor of HB 162, read the following sponsor statement                                                                         
[original punctuation provided]:                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     When you  make poor choices  and decide to  drive under                                                                    
     the influence you will  face criminal prosecution. Upon                                                                    
     conviction by  a jury  of your peers  you might  face a                                                                    
     sentence  of   imprisonment,  fines,  and  use   of  an                                                                    
     ignition   interlock  device   after  you   regain  the                                                                    
     privilege of  a driver  license. If  you are  found not                                                                    
     guilty  of  all  charges,  the court  shall  grant  you                                                                    
     access  to  driving  license privileges.  However,  the                                                                    
     state  of  Alaska  possesses  two  separate  bodies  of                                                                    
     authority  to determine  the rights  and privileges  of                                                                    
     Alaskan drivers.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
     Under AS 28.15.165, Department  of Motor Vehicles (DMV)                                                                    
     is authorized  to conduct an  administrative revocation                                                                    
     of  a  driver's  license  when a  chemical  test  of  a                                                                    
     person's  breath  shows an  alcohol  level  of 0.08  or                                                                    
     more, or the person refuses  to take the chemical test.                                                                    
     The  administrative  process  by   the  DMV  may  occur                                                                    
     whether or not  there is a criminal charge  for a court                                                                    
     to process.  If you wish to  contest the administrative                                                                    
     revocation   you   can   schedule   an   administrative                                                                    
     revocation  hearing  over  the phone  to  review  DMV's                                                                    
     action. The hearing for review  of action by the DMV is                                                                    
     limited  to the  issue of  whether the  law enforcement                                                                    
     officer had  probable cause to believe  that the person                                                                    
     was operating  a motor vehicle  under the  influence of                                                                    
     drugs or alcohol. The DMV  hearing officer will conduct                                                                    
     the  hearing, examine  witnesses, review  evidence, and                                                                    
     make  a  final  ruling  on  the  issue.  Administrative                                                                    
     revocations  by  the  DMV  may   be  concurrent  or  in                                                                    
     addition to any penalties applied  by the courts and is                                                                    
     at the discretion of the DMV hearing officer.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
     The state  of Alaska  possesses two separate  bodies of                                                                    
     authority  to determine  the rights  and privileges  of                                                                    
     Alaskan  drivers.  The  state of  Alaska  court  system                                                                    
     provides  for a  trial by  a jury  of your  peers which                                                                    
     will  review the  evidence and  deliberate on  criminal                                                                    
     sentencing.  In  comparison,  the  DMV's  authority  to                                                                    
     impose conditions on the issuance  of a limited license                                                                    
     is designed to promptly  address public safety and does                                                                    
     not  necessarily  involve  the  considerations  of  the                                                                    
     verdicts  of  the  courts.  In   the  end,  anyone  who                                                                    
     presents probable  cause to  a law  enforcement officer                                                                    
     is considered  guilty. Even  if found  not guilty  by a                                                                    
     jury  of your  peers through  the Alaska  Court System,                                                                    
     the DMV  has the authority to  place additional burdens                                                                    
     on the  individual. HB 162  solves this dual  burden of                                                                    
     driver  license  revocations   by  repealing  the  DMVs                                                                    
     independent authority  to administrative  revocation of                                                                    
     a  driver's  license and  place  it  solely within  the                                                                    
     court.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
9:00:35 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  WILSON explained  that  the proposed  legislation                                                               
does not seek  to change the procedures related  to driving under                                                               
the influence (DUI),  but rather, to allow a  person charged with                                                               
DUI  and exonerated  by  the  court system  to  have  his or  her                                                               
license returned and  not receive any further  penalties from the                                                               
DMV.                                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
9:01:31 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  LYNN asked  for clarification  that  someone arrested  for                                                               
DUI, who  is found not  guilty of DUI  by the court,  could still                                                               
have his/her license  revoked by the DMV.  He  asked also if that                                                               
situation constitutes double jeopardy.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  WILSON agreed  that  there  is an  administrative                                                               
review by the  DMV in addition to the  court proceeding; however,                                                               
she  added  that  it  is   not  double  jeopardy  because  it  is                                                               
considered  to be  similar  to  a civil  case,  as  opposed to  a                                                               
criminal case subject to court procedures.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE STUTES expressed her support for HB 162.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
9:03:19 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE VAZQUEZ  expressed that she also  supports HB 162.                                                               
She   asked  for   clarification   that   through  the   proposed                                                               
legislation there would have to  be a judicial process before the                                                               
DMV could revoke a driver's license.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE WILSON  responded that someone who  is stopped for                                                               
DUI by a law enforcement officer  and given a ticket must then go                                                               
to  court;  however,  as  she  explained  further,  even  if  the                                                               
individual is found  not guilty by the court, he  or she is still                                                               
subject  to the  findings  and penalty  of  a DMV  administrative                                                               
review.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE VAZQUEZ  asked if  the proposed  legislation would                                                               
affect federal funding.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE WILSON responded  that she was unable  to find any                                                               
evidence that  HB 162  would result in  loss of  federal funding.                                                               
She questioned why  there was a zero fiscal note  attached as she                                                               
speculated  that the  proposed  legislation  would eliminate  the                                                               
need for the two administrative hearing officers within the DMV.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
9:05:27 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  WILSON  responded  to Chair  Lynn's  request  for                                                               
clarification on the issue of  federal funding by saying that the                                                               
federal  government has,  at times,  linked federal  funding with                                                               
certain  legislation,  such  as  seat  belt  laws;  however,  she                                                               
reiterated  that she  has  found no  evidence  that the  proposed                                                               
legislation  would   affect  any  federal  funding.     She  also                                                               
emphasized  that HB  162  does not  change  laws or  consequences                                                               
regarding  DUI, but  maintained that  the DMV  is not  the proper                                                               
place for adjudication.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
9:06:24 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KELLER   stated  his  support  for   HB  162  and                                                               
maintained  his  belief that  in  Alaska  the administrative  and                                                               
judicial branches  are stronger  than the legislative  branch, in                                                               
part  because  the  governor appoints  the  commissioner  of  the                                                               
Department of Law  (DOL).  He opined that "anything  we can do to                                                               
separate  justice  from  the   enforcement  and  the  legislative                                                               
process ... cleans up our act."                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
9:07:14 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
NICOLE THAM, Driver Services Manager,  Division of Motor Vehicles                                                               
(DMV),  Department of  Administration (DOA),  stated her  concern                                                               
that the committee  and the public understand that it  is not the                                                               
DMV's duty to administratively revoke  driver's licenses but that                                                               
the  Thirteenth  Alaska State  Legislature  -  to deal  with  the                                                               
problem  of  drunk  driving  and   increase  safety  on  Alaska's                                                               
roadways - adopted administrative  license revocation.  She added                                                               
that  one  of  the  primary purposes  of  administrative  license                                                               
revocation was  to impose swift  licensing sanctions  on impaired                                                               
drivers to deter drunk driving.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
9:08:13 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  LYNN asked  Ms.  Tham to  explain why  there  would be  an                                                               
administrative revocation  in the  case where  the court  found a                                                               
person not guilty of a DUI.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MS.  THAM responded  that there  were  two separate  proceedings:                                                               
the court proceeding to punish  the criminal action and the civil                                                               
proceeding  - administrative  revocation  - to  remove the  drunk                                                               
driver from the roadway.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR LYNN asked for further explanation  as to the basis for the                                                               
DMV acting  as a  "second" court  hearing when  there has  been a                                                               
criminal proceeding that determined the driver was not impaired.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
MS.  THAM explained  that  even  if the  action  is dismissed  in                                                               
court,  the  two   main  issues  -  probable   cause  for  arrest                                                               
("probable cause")  and the validity  of the breathalyzer  test -                                                               
are the only two issues that the DMV considers in its hearing.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  LYNN  contended  that  a  stop for  probable  cause  is  a                                                               
judgment call  by an officer that  the driver is impaired,  but a                                                               
subsequent  court  finding  that  the  driver  was  not  impaired                                                               
suggests two different court proceedings.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
MS. THAM explained the process as  follows:  An officer will stop                                                               
a  driver   if  there   is  probable   cause  and   administer  a                                                               
breathalyzer  test.   If the  breathalyzer test  result shows  an                                                               
alcohol  concentration of  .08 or  greater,  indicating that  the                                                               
driver  is  actually  impaired,  or if  the  driver  refuses  the                                                               
breathalyzer  test, the  administrative proceeding  is initiated.                                                               
The driver is then served a  notice and order of revocation which                                                               
explains  the process,  why their  driving  privileges are  being                                                               
revoked,  and  serves as  a  seven-day  temporary license.    The                                                               
driver has  seven days to  request an administrative  hearing for                                                               
review of the action against  his/her driving privileges, and, if                                                               
a hearing  is not  requested, the  action is  put on  the record.                                                               
She  concluded   by  stating  that   often  the   separate  court                                                               
proceeding does not occur until months later.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
9:11:32 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  STUTES  reiterated  her  belief  that  the  DMV's                                                               
second-guessing the  court's determination appears  comparable to                                                               
a double  jeopardy and creates  more hardship for  the individual                                                               
who has already had to go through the court process.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
9:12:24 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KELLER asked if, in  Ms. Tham's opinion, the court                                                               
system of Alaska is incapable of swift sanctions.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
MS.  THAM  responded  that the  court  proceeding  is  completely                                                               
independent  of  the  DMV,  and  that  the  DMV  is  required  by                                                               
statutory  provision  to  take  action against  a  driver  for  a                                                               
breathalyzer test result of .08  or greater who received a notice                                                               
and order of  revocation.  She added that Alaska  is in line with                                                               
43  other  states,   the  District  of  Columbia,   and  the  two                                                               
territories  of  the  Northern Mariana  Islands  and  the  Virgin                                                               
Islands, in  adopting licensing sanctions to  deter drunk driving                                                               
and  remove  impaired  drivers  swiftly   from  the  road.    The                                                               
administrative  revocation of  the DMV  often precedes  the court                                                               
action, because the DMV action is  taken within seven days of the                                                               
notice  and  order  being  served unless  the  action  is  stayed                                                               
because the driver requested an  administrative hearing.  In most                                                               
cases the DMV action precedes court action.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
9:13:55 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KELLER asked  why  there is  a  zero fiscal  note                                                               
attached to HB 162.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
MS. THAM  explained that  the DMV does  other hearings  for motor                                                               
vehicle and  driver's license  issues, and  although the  bulk of                                                               
the  hearings   involve  administrative  revocation   of  driving                                                               
privileges,  there  are  hearings   related  to  title  disputes,                                                               
personalized plate disputes, and medical cancellation.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KELLER reiterated  his belief  that the  proposed                                                               
legislation should have a positive  fiscal note due to the stated                                                               
reduction in duties.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MS. THAM responded that the full  fiscal implication of HB 162 is                                                               
unclear at this time.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
9:15:10 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS. THAM, in response to  Representative Vazquez's question about                                                               
when  the notice  of revocation  is  issued, relayed  that it  is                                                               
issued at the time of arrest.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  VAZQUEZ  asked what  the  wait  time was  for  an                                                               
administrative hearing, if requested.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
MS. THAM replied that the  hearing requests are processed as soon                                                               
as  they are  received, and  hearings are  scheduled about  30-45                                                               
days  beyond that  point.   She added  that once  the hearing  is                                                               
granted the action  is stayed and is not applied  to the driver's                                                               
record until an affirmed decision  at the hearing.  If dismissed,                                                               
the action is not added to the record.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE VAZQUEZ asked  if there is notice of  the right to                                                               
appeal the decision in court  once the administrative decision is                                                               
issued.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
MS.  THAM  responded yes  and  added  that  the decision  may  be                                                               
appealed  through  the  superior  court within  30  days  of  the                                                               
decision of the hearing.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
9:17:14 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE VAZQUEZ  requested Ms. Tham explain  the instances                                                               
in  which  the DMV  does  not  adhere  to  a court  decision  but                                                               
proceeds  to revoke  the  license of  an  individual even  though                                                               
he/she was found not guilty by a court.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
MS. THAM  explained that since the  administrative action usually                                                               
precedes  the  court action,  the  administrative  action is  not                                                               
dependent  at all  on  the  court action.    She  added that  the                                                               
criteria for  the DMV action has  a lower threshold than  that of                                                               
the court system - the DMV  criteria being probable cause and the                                                               
results of the breathalyzer test.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE VAZQUEZ asked for confirmation  that the DMV has a                                                               
separate basis  for taking action against  someone's license from                                                               
that of the court system.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
MS. THAM  confirmed that  under AS  28.15.165 that  statement was                                                               
correct.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  VAZQUEZ   asked  if   the  DMV   action  occurred                                                               
regardless of the court's decision.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
MS. THAM answered in the affirmative.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
9:18:35 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KREISS-TOMKINS asked  how many  full-time hearing                                                               
officers are tasked with the administrative hearings described.                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MS. THAM responded that there  are two full-time hearing officers                                                               
who  review  DMV  hearings  of  all  types,  and  there  are  six                                                               
administrative  licensing staff  who perform  some aspect  of the                                                               
administrative revocation process.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KREISS-TOMKINS  asked what  portion of  staff time                                                               
is spent on license revocations.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
MS. THAM  expressed that  it would be  difficult to  estimate the                                                               
amount  of time,  and she  said she  would provide  the committee                                                               
with that information.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
9:20:21 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  VAZQUEZ asked  how many  times the  DMV suspended                                                               
someone's license  when the court  determined him/her  not guilty                                                               
of DUI.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
MS.  THAM  stated  that  the  DMV  has  data  on  the  number  of                                                               
administrative  revocations and  administrative hearings,  but no                                                               
data on criminal conviction, as that would be with the court.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KREISS-TOMKINS  asked Ms. Tham to  cite the number                                                               
of administrative revocations per year  and the average number of                                                               
revoked licenses in Alaska at any given time.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
9:22:17 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  VAZQUEZ  expressed  that although  she  sees  the                                                               
merit  of swift  action by  the DMV,  she doesn't  understand how                                                               
anyone  who  has his/her  license  revoked  by  the DMV  after  a                                                               
judicial  action   exonerates  him/her  is  being   afforded  due                                                               
process.   She  added  that she  did recognize  the  merit of  an                                                               
administrative process  that is  more responsive than  the longer                                                               
and more cumbersome criminal process.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  WILSON asked  rhetorically, "Aren't  you innocent                                                               
until proven  guilty?"   She further attested  that a  DMV action                                                               
that precedes a court decision counters that principle.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
9:24:59 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE VAZQUEZ  voiced her opinion that  the matter under                                                               
discussion was one  of balance.  She declared  that public safety                                                               
is an  important consideration  - that is,  the issue  of drivers                                                               
suspected  of DUI  being  allowed on  the roadways.     She  also                                                               
conceded  that  having  one's driving  privileges  revoked  is  a                                                               
serious  impediment   in  Alaska.     She  opined  that   a  long                                                               
administrative  process  is  problematic but  that  the  judicial                                                               
system would  move even slower.   She expressed a desire  to hear                                                               
testimony from the court system.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  LYNN  suggested  the possibility  of  these  issues  being                                                               
addressed  in the  House Judiciary  Standing Committee,  which is                                                               
the next committee of referral for HB 162.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
9:27:04 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KREISS-TOMKINS requested  the  number of  license                                                               
revocations annually in Alaska.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MS. THAM  answered that in  2008 there were  5,902 administrative                                                               
revocations for DUI,  and in 2014 there were 3,563,  a 40 percent                                                               
reduction.   She  asked  the committee  members  to consider  the                                                               
decrease  in  DUIs  in  light  of all  the  deterrents  to  drunk                                                               
driving, either  singularly or in combination,  namely sanctions,                                                               
convictions,  administrative  revocations,   and  all  the  other                                                               
requirements.   She stressed  that only  25-29 percent  of people                                                               
who get an administrative revocation request a review.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE    KREISS-TOMKINS    asked    if    administrative                                                               
revocations exist in other states.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
MS.  THAM repeated  her claim  from  earlier that  administrative                                                               
revocations exist in  43 other states, the  District of Columbia,                                                               
and the two  territories of the Northern Mariana  Islands and the                                                               
Virgin Islands.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
9:29:01 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KREISS-TOMKINS  asked Ms. Tham and  the sponsor if                                                               
either knew how  HB 162 differs from or relates  similarly to the                                                               
criminal  justice reform  bill [HB  205, Criminal  Law/Procedure;                                                               
Driv  Lic;  Pub  Aid]  heard  in  the  House  Judiciary  Standing                                                               
Committee  the previous  day, and  he mentioned  specifically the                                                               
provisions in  HB 205 that  relate to the revocation  of driver's                                                               
licenses.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE WILSON said that  she spoke with Senator Coghill's                                                               
legislative aide,  who asserted  that the content  of HB  162 was                                                               
not included in HB 205 and  there was no conflict between the two                                                               
proposed legislations.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
MS.  THAM  mentioned that  she  was  aware of  discussions  about                                                               
proposed legislation  addressing the  issue of  limited licenses.                                                               
She  also noted  discussions  concerning the  review of  criminal                                                               
laws and practices  within AS 28, which includes  the dual system                                                               
of administrative and judicial license revocation.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
9:31:09 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE STUTES  opined that she understands  that having a                                                               
driver's license is a privilege.   She expressed her concern that                                                               
the DMV  is overstepping the bounds  of its expertise.   She went                                                               
on  to give  the  example of  a  homeless man  living  in a  non-                                                               
operational truck who  received a DUI for drinking  in his truck.                                                               
She said that  the court dismissed the DUI, but  the DMV required                                                               
the individual get a full  mental evaluation before returning his                                                               
driver license to him.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
9:32:50 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE VAZQUEZ declared that  her greatest concern is the                                                               
situation in which the court has  ruled and the DMV overturns the                                                               
decision.  She  opined that she also understands  the validity of                                                               
the DMV  removing an impaired  driver from the street  with swift                                                               
action.  She  stated further that the courts are  bogged down and                                                               
cannot swiftly take  action as can the DMV.   She maintained that                                                               
the issue is  "when the court takes action and  finds someone not                                                               
guilty for  whatever reason, that DMV  not be able to  usurp that                                                               
judicial  decision."   She  repeated  her  belief that  there  is                                                               
validity  to  having  an  administrative  process  that  is  more                                                               
flexible and faster than the judicial system.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
9:35:23 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KELLER  asked Representative Vazquez if  she would                                                               
be comfortable relying on the  three House State Affairs Standing                                                               
Committee  members,  who  also   serve  on  the  House  Judiciary                                                               
Standing  Committee,  to  bring  her   issues  up  in  the  House                                                               
Judiciary Standing Committee  hearing.  He restated  her issue as                                                               
the balance between the considerations  for public safety against                                                               
administrative  authority for  license  revocation. He  expressed                                                               
that  the  desire   for  the  court  system   to  handle  license                                                               
revocation  was not  at all  a reflection  on the  administrative                                                               
review  system but  said that  he thought  it was  an unnecessary                                                               
duplication.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE VAZQUEZ suggested a  possible amendment to tighten                                                               
the timeframe  for the  administrative license  revocation review                                                               
process.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
9:37:39 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE    WILSON    responded   that    she    understood                                                               
Representative Vazquez's  concern but  asserted that  the court's                                                               
timeframe is  governed by  that process  and the  DMV's timeframe                                                               
precedes that of  the court.  She offered to  work with committee                                                               
members to consider amendments to  alleviate their concerns.  She                                                               
reiterated her  belief that  the court  system process  should be                                                               
the only process and it should precede license revocation.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE   STUTES  agreed   with  Representative   Wilson's                                                               
assessment  of  the  current license  revocation  procedures  and                                                               
said, "You  don't punish somebody  for something before  you know                                                               
they've done it."  She reiterated that she supported the bill.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
9:40:39 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KREISS-TOMKINS  asked Nancy Meade if  she knew the                                                               
usual wait  times and  process times for  someone charged  with a                                                               
DUI [in the court system].                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
9:41:47 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
NANCY  MEADE, General  Council, Administrative  Staff, Office  of                                                               
the Administrative  Director, Alaska  Court System,  responded to                                                               
the question  posed by  Representative Kreiss-Tomkins  by stating                                                               
that the average time for  disposition of misdemeanor DUIs - that                                                               
is, first and second DUIs -  is four months, and the average time                                                               
for  a felony  DUI is  nine months.   She  stated that  there was                                                               
great variation among the times.   She also reiterated Ms. Tham's                                                               
assertion that  the number of  DUIs has decreased and  the number                                                               
of DUIs in 2015 was 3,650.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
9:42:59 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SPOHNHOLZ asked how  many of the 3,650 convictions                                                               
were felony.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS. MEADE responded  that in 2015 there were  223 convictions for                                                               
felony  DUI  and 3,371  convictions  for  misdemeanor DUI.    She                                                               
explained  that these  numbers referred  to  convictions and  not                                                               
charges.   She added that there  is a low acquittal  rate for DUI                                                               
charges.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
9:43:51 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  VAZQUEZ  asked for  the  acquittal  rate for  the                                                               
misdemeanor cases.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
MS. MEADE  replied that  she didn't know  but could  provide that                                                               
information to the committee along with the dismissal rate.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
9:44:20 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS.  MEADE  repeated  the  number   of  DUIs  for  Representative                                                               
Spohnholz,  which  is  about  3600.    She  added  one  point  of                                                               
clarification regarding  HB 205.   She said that although  HB 205                                                               
does  not have  a  provision  similar to  HB  162,  it does  have                                                               
several provisions  about giving limited licenses  back to people                                                               
who have  had a DUI.   She directed the committee's  attention to                                                               
Section 83 of HB 205, which  says that if a court acquits someone                                                               
of a  DUI and  their license  had been  revoked administratively,                                                               
the court  decision would stop that  administrative revocation at                                                               
that  point  in   time.    She  added  that   almost  always  the                                                               
administrative   revocation   takes   place  before   the   court                                                               
disposition of the case.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  SPOHNHOLZ  asked  the  sponsor  if  the  proposed                                                               
legislation would treat felony and misdemeanor DUIs differently.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE WILSON  answered that they would  be treated alike                                                               
in  the   proposed  legislation  -   the  intent  being   to  put                                                               
jurisdiction back into the court system.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  VAZQUEZ   asked  for  acquittal  rates   for  the                                                               
different categories of DUI.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS. MEADE agreed to provide that information to the committee.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
9:46:43 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  TALERICO  asked  Representative  Wilson  for  the                                                               
current  procedures when  someone is  stopped by  an officer  and                                                               
refuses a breathalyzer test.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE VAZQUEZ  alleged that  no one with  that expertise                                                               
is present who can answer Representative Talerico's question.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE WILSON responded that a  person suspected of a DUI                                                               
does not  walk away.  She  contended that someone suspected  of a                                                               
DUI is  given notice  of the DMV  procedures and  timeline before                                                               
any  judicial  proceeding.    She stated  her  belief  that  this                                                               
scenario constitutes a  presumption of guilt before  a person has                                                               
been to court and received due process.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
9:49:28 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE VAZQUEZ  voiced her assumption that  the acquittal                                                               
rate is  about 5-10 percent.   She offered that  someone arrested                                                               
for  serial assault  or  serial  murder would  have  to wait  for                                                               
judicial  action.   She also  noted that  an employee  accused of                                                               
serious misconduct is suspended  immediately.  She suggested that                                                               
the balance  for public  safety and  interest is  a consideration                                                               
for immediate action in those cases.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  WILSON   reiterated  that  a  person   should  be                                                               
innocent until proven  guilty.  She claimed that she  knows of no                                                               
other  scenario  where  you must  go  through  an  administrative                                                               
hearing and  be punished  before a court  proceeding.   She cited                                                               
the example of a shoplifter.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
9:51:59 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE VAZQUEZ  countered that  in the case  of suspected                                                               
shoplifting and  certainly more serious accusations  there may be                                                               
a  number  of  pre-trial  conditions  set  by  court  before  the                                                               
judicial process, including bail, loss  of freedom of movement, a                                                               
court-appointed     custodian,    travel     restrictions,    and                                                               
imprisonment, all to safeguard the public interests.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE WILSON maintained that  the court determined those                                                               
conditions, not the DMV.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
9:54:08 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KELLER  asked if the court  could restrict driving                                                               
as a pretrial condition in a simple but swift process.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE VAZQUEZ expressed concern  for the added burden to                                                               
the  court  to  be  tasked  in  that  way  but  acknowledged  the                                                               
possibility  of  the  court restricting  driving  as  a  pretrial                                                               
condition.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR LYNN asked Representative Vazquez  to work with the sponsor                                                               
to address  her concerns  before HB  162 was  heard in  the House                                                               
Judiciary  Standing Committee,  if it  moved out  of the  current                                                               
committee.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  SPOHNHOLZ  asked if  HB  162  would increase  the                                                               
workload of the court system.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE WILSON  responded that  HB 162 would  not increase                                                               
the  workload for  the court  system and  relayed that  the court                                                               
system offered no fiscal note for the proposed legislation.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR LYNN closed public testimony on HB 162.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
9:56:28AM                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KREISS-TOMKINS stated  his belief  that there  is                                                               
room for  improvement in the  degree of diligence with  regard to                                                               
the fiscal note.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
9:57:14 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KELLER  moved to  report HB  162 out  of committee                                                               
with  individual  recommendations  and  the  accompanying  fiscal                                                               
notes.  There being no objection,  HB 162 was reported out of the                                                               
House State Affairs Standing Committee.                                                                                         

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
08 HB 273 Letter of Support AK Auto Assn 1-28-2016.pdf HSTA 3/15/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 273
09 CSHB 273 v.I (STA).pdf HSTA 3/15/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 273
10 HB273 Sectional Analysis v.I.pdf HSTA 3/15/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 273
09 Keller Amendment A.4 HB 229 as of 3-10-2016.pdf HSTA 3/15/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 229
01 HB 162 Ver. A.pdf HSTA 3/15/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 162
02 HB 162 Sponsor Statement 1-2412016.pdf HSTA 3/15/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 162
03 HB 162 Supporting Document - Spreadsheet States.pdf HSTA 3/15/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 162
04 HB 162 Supporting Document - NHTSA Traffic Safety Facts January 2008.pdf HSTA 3/15/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 162
05 HB 162 AS 28.15.181.pdf HSTA 3/15/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 162
06 HB 162 AS 28.15.166.pdf HSTA 3/15/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 162
07 HB 162 AS 28.05.165.pdf HSTA 3/15/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 162
08 HB 162 Supporting Document - Montana Code Annotated.pdf HSTA 3/15/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 162
09 HB162 Fiscal Note DOA-Motor Vehicles.pdf HSTA 3/15/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 162
10 HB 162 Legal Services Bill draft request 4 Nov 2014.pdf HSTA 3/15/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 162