Legislature(1993 - 1994)

04/22/1993 09:10 AM CRA

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
  SENATOR RANDY  PHILLIPS brought  SB 191  (MUNICIPAL PROPERTY                 
  TAX LIMITATIONS) before the committee.                                       
  CAROL CARROL, staff  to Senator Jay Kerttula,  explained the                 
  legislation would clarify law for general law municipalities                 
  that would  allow them to put a tax limitation on the ballot                 
  by initiative.  If  an initiative had passed and there was a                 
  tax cap, then the only way that it could be removed would be                 
  by referendum.                                                               
  Ms. Carrol  said  the  legislation  would  become  effective                 
  January 1, 1994, the beginning of the new calendar year.                     
  Number 390                                                                   
  TAM COOK, Director, Division of Legal Services,  Legislative                 
  Affairs Agency,  added that from  time to  time, people  are                 
  concerned  that if  there were  a  tax limitation,  it would                 
  somehow adversely affect bonding.   This particular language                 
  is drafted so that the language  on bonding which now exists                 
  in the statute and  provides that any limit on  taxes cannot                 
  be imposed to  affect payback  of bonds will  apply to  this                 
  limit  too,  assuming  that  the   voters  of  a  particular                 
  municipality  chose to  impose  a limit.    She assured  the                 
  committee that bonds would remain protected.                                 
  Number 400                                                                   
  KEN SWISHER,  Executive Director,  Alaska Municipal  League,                 
  voiced opposition to SB 191.  Doing  something by initiative                 
  creates the  opportunity to  reduce municipal  tax authority                 
  through  an  action  directly by  the  public.    The League                 
  believes that  it creates  a vulnerability  in terms  of the                 
  muncipality's  operating budget.    The  proper  remedy  for                 
  disputes about taxation is through  the electoral process in                 
  terms of selecting people who are in office.                                 
  Mr. Swisher  suggested that it  would be more  acceptable if                 
  the  bill were  to  be  amended  in  such  a  way  that  the                 
  initiative was not a possibility.                                            
  Number 425                                                                   
  SENATOR LEMAN disagreed with Mr. Swisher's comments and said                 
  he thinks having the ability to  have a "taxpayer revolt" is                 
  one of the beauties of the our system.                                       
  SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS closed the public hearing on SB 191.                  

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