Legislature(2017 - 2018)GRUENBERG 120

03/02/2017 03:00 PM STATE AFFAIRS

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* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
+= HB 44 LEGISLATIVE ETHICS: VOTING & CONFLICTS TELECONFERENCED
Heard & Held
+= HCR 1 AMEND UNIFORM RULES: ABSTAIN FROM VOTING TELECONFERENCED
Heard & Held
+ Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled TELECONFERENCED
+= HB 97 REPEAL AK FIRE STANDS. COUNCIL TAX CREDIT TELECONFERENCED
Moved CSHB 97(STA) Out of Committee
         HCR 1-AMEND UNIFORM RULES: ABSTAIN FROM VOTING                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
3:37:50 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KREISS-TOMKINS  announced that the final  order of business                                                               
would  be  HOUSE  CONCURRENT  RESOLUTION   NO.  1,  Proposing  an                                                               
amendment to  the Uniform Rules  of the Alaska  State Legislature                                                               
relating to voting and abstention from voting.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
3:38:18 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  JOHNSON moved  adopt  Amendment  1, [labeled  30-                                                               
LS0209\J.6, Gardner, 3/1/17], which read:                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Page 2, line 6:                                                                                                                 
     Delete "a majority of"                                                                                                 
     Insert "three-quarters of"                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KREISS-TOMKINS objected for the purpose of discussion.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE JOHNSON stated  that the intent of  Amendment 1 is                                                               
to  avoid the  possibility of  a legislator  agreeing to  allow a                                                               
member to abstain from voting to  influence the passage of a bill                                                               
or resolution.   She maintained  that requiring  a three-quarters                                                               
vote of  30 members instead  of a  simple majority would  make it                                                               
more likely that members of  both the majority and minority would                                                               
be needed for consent.  She  added that Amendment 1 would help to                                                               
avoid the perception  that a vote on abstention could  be used as                                                               
a tool to keep a legislator out of the voting process.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
3:40:13 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE LEDOUX  asked if  the sponsor  of HCR  1 considers                                                               
Amendment 1 a friendly or unfriendly amendment.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
RYAN JOHNSTON,  Staff, Representative  Jason Grenn,  Alaska State                                                               
Legislature, on behalf of Representative  Grenn, prime sponsor of                                                               
HCR 1, stated that 28 states use a  vote and 24 of those 28 use a                                                               
majority  vote   [to  decide  abstentions  due   to  conflict  of                                                               
interest].  He said that the use  of "majority vote" in HCR 1 was                                                               
for the sake  of continuity, since current  statutes require that                                                               
at the municipal level.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
3:41:00 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  TUCK asked  what the  procedure was  in the  four                                                               
states not using majority vote.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MR. JOHNSTON  replied that 4  of the  28 states use  a two-thirds                                                               
vote.   He  confirmed for  Representative LeDoux  that he  is not                                                               
aware of a three-quarters vote being used in any state.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
3:41:29 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  JOHNSON  stated  that   her  intent  was  not  to                                                               
introduce an unfriendly amendment.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
3:41:43 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE WOOL expressed his support  for not using a simple                                                               
majority vote.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
3:42:15 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  TUCK moved  to adopt  conceptual  Amendment 1  to                                                               
Amendment  1 to  replace "three-quarters  vote" with  "two-thirds                                                               
vote".                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE JOHNSON objected for the purpose of discussion.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE TUCK  stated that  there are very  few legislative                                                               
actions requiring  a three-quarters  vote.   He offered  that the                                                               
only  such vote  is the  one to  spend the  constitutional budget                                                               
reserve (CBR).  He opined that  such a requirement is a very high                                                               
standard,  and  a  two-thirds  vote   requirement,  such  as  for                                                               
effective  date clauses  and  court rulings,  is  already a  high                                                               
standard.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  JOHNSON  removed   her  objection  to  conceptual                                                               
Amendment 1  to Amendment 1.   There being no  further objection,                                                               
it was so ordered.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KREISS-TOMKINS  removed his  objection to Amendment  1, [as                                                               
amended].  There being no further objection, it was so ordered.                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
3:45:04 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
The committee took a brief at-ease at 3:45 p.m.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
3:45:35 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE WOOL  suggested a conceptual amendment  to include                                                               
a sunset date in the proposed  legislation to "take it for a test                                                               
drive."   He asked if inserting  a sunset date would  be possible                                                               
with the  understanding that the current  legislature cannot tell                                                               
a future legislature  "what to do."  He asked  what the effective                                                               
date was for the proposed legislation.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
MR.  JOHNSTON replied  that as  currently  written, the  proposed                                                               
legislation would  take effect  at the  beginning of  next year's                                                               
session  [the  second  session  of  the  Thirtieth  Alaska  State                                                               
Legislature, 2017-2018],  up until the Thirty-First  Alaska State                                                               
Legislature, 2019-2020.  He stated  that through discussions with                                                               
Legislative Legal  and Research  Services staff, he  learned that                                                               
inserting  a  three-year  sunset into  the  proposed  legislation                                                               
would bind the Thirty-First  Alaska State Legislature, 2019-2020,                                                               
to adopting Uniform  Rule 34(b) outside of  the normal procedures                                                               
of  adopting  rules   prior  to  the  session.     He  said  that                                                               
technically the proposed  legislation has a sunset,  which is the                                                               
start of  the Thirty-First  Alaska State  Legislature, 2019-2020.                                                               
He said that  at that point, [the Uniform Rule]  could be changed                                                               
or adopted  again for the Thirty-First  Alaska State Legislature,                                                               
2019-2020.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  WOOL asked  for  confirmation  that [the  Uniform                                                               
Rule]  would  be  in  effect  at the  beginning  of  next  year's                                                               
session,  and when  the  Thirty-First  Alaska State  Legislature,                                                               
2019-2020,  begins, the  rule would  come before  the legislature                                                               
again for adoption.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
MR. JOHNSTON confirmed that is correct.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
MR. WAYNE,  in response to  Chair Kreiss-Tomkins, stated  that to                                                               
comment  on  the   discussion,  he  would  need   to  review  the                                                               
requirements for Uniform Rules to expire and be re-adopted.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KREISS-TOMKINS  recommended postponing introduction  of the                                                               
suggested amendment  to the 3/7/17  House State  Affairs Standing                                                               
Committee meeting.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
3:49:16 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE LEDOUX asked if she  is correct in her belief that                                                               
the Uniform Rules  will remain in effect until  re-adopted by the                                                               
Thirty-First  Alaska State  Legislature, 2019-2020,  and all  the                                                               
rules together  are adopted by  the legislature at  the beginning                                                               
of the session.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MR. JOHNSTON  said, "That is correct."   He stated that  there is                                                               
an automatic  sunset date on  Uniform Rule 34(b) because  it must                                                               
be  re-adopted  by  the Thirty-First  Alaska  State  Legislature,                                                               
2019-2020.  He expressed his understanding that the legislature                                                                 
can amend a Uniform Rule prior to adoption by the legislature.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
MR.  WAYNE cited  Uniform Rule  53, which  he said  addresses the                                                               
adoptions  and  amendments  of Uniform  Rules.    He  paraphrased                                                               
Uniform  Rule 53,  which read  as  follows [original  punctuation                                                               
provided]:                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     The Uniform Rules of each  legislature shall be adopted                                                                    
     in  joint  session  by  a majority  vote  of  the  full                                                                    
     membership  of  each  house.   Thereafter  the  Uniform                                                                    
     Rules  may  be  amended  only  by  the  adoption  of  a                                                                    
     concurrent resolution by a two-thirds  vote of the full                                                                    
     membership of each house.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
MR. WAYNE stated that he agreed with Mr. Johnston's explanation.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
[HCR 1 was held over.]                                                                                                          

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
HCR 1 Draft Proposed Amendment 3.1.17.pdf HSTA 3/2/2017 3:00:00 PM
HCR 1
HB 44 Draft Proposed Amendment U.3 3.2.17.PDF HSTA 3/2/2017 3:00:00 PM
HB 44
HB 97 Draft Proposed Amendment A.1 3.2.17.pdf HSTA 3/2/2017 3:00:00 PM
HB 97