Legislature(1993 - 1994)
03/01/1994 09:05 AM CRA
* first hearing in first committee of referral
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
The Senate Community & Regional Affairs Committee was called to order by Chairman Randy Phillips at 9:05 a.m. He introduced SSSB 223 (TAX CREDIT: GIFTS TO PUBLIC BROADCASTING) as the first order of business. JOE AMBROSE, staff to Senator Taylor who is the prime sponsor of SSSB 223, read into the record Senator Taylor's sponsor statement: "Despite reductions of about 35 percent since 1986, public broadcasting in Alaska still costs the general fund more than six million dollars per year. Enactment of this legislation would provide an incentive for business and industry to contribute to public broadcasting and reduce the dependence on state funding. Alaska's public radio and television networks and stations are recognized as an integral part of our educational system. Under SSSB 223, contributions to those networks and stations would be allowed as a tax credit under the same provisions which allow for credit for donations to our colleges and universities. This bill would allow for such credits against the Alaska Net Income Tax and four other state taxes. In fiscal year 1993, Alaska business and industry claimed $533,429 against their taxes for donations under the education tax credit provisions. The Alaska State Legislature has shown strong support for public broadcasting in the past. Public broadcasting is a vital part of our communications and education system, depended upon by thousands of rural and urban Alaskans. To quote Rich McClear, the former manager of Raven Radio in Sitka, "Raven Radio would find this bill very useful in helping us become more independent of state support." That is the goal of SSSB 223 and I ask for your support." Number 045 SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS stated testimony would be taken over the teleconference network. MS. MARTY WEST, General Manager of radio station KRBD FM in Ketchikan, stated support for SSSB 223. She noted KRBD FM has had an enormous cut in their budgets over the past eight years, and SSSB 223 would give them a great deal more autonomy. They have been increasingly relying on locals for memberships and for underwriting and the legislation would offer an additional benefit for their underwriting. She urged the committee's support for SSSB 223. Number 072 DON RINKER, General Manager of the radio station KBRW in Barrow, voiced support for SB 223. He said in every community there is a significant outpouring of local support for the public broadcasting community. He noted that in Barrow, public radio has had the support of the organizations throughout the North Slope. He suggested that in-kind contributions should also be eligible for tax credits. Number 162 LEONARD ANDERSON, General Manager of KOTZ in Kotzebue, said as state support dwindles, they have to find other funding sources. KOTZ has been increasingly turning to underwriting, and SB 223 will give then that extra edge. He stated his strong support for passage of the legislation. Number 223 MS. KELLY LAW of public radio station KMXT in Kodiak said they are in the midst of a very large capital campaign to acquire a decent facility and the legislation could have immediate benefit to them as they try to raise a large sum of money. Number 234 KEN FATE, Station Manager of Raven Radio in Sitka, stated his strong support for SSSB 223. Number 238 STEPHAN HELGESON, Board of Directors member for KSTK-FM in Wrangell, stated their strong support for the legislation. Number 245 MATT HOLMES, Manager of public radio station KFSK in Petersburg, voiced his support for SSSB 223. Number 255 PAUL DICK, Income & Excise Audit Division, Department of Revenue, explained that the legislation allows for credits for taxpayers that make contributions not to exceed $150,000. It would apply to corporate net income tax, oil and gas production and property taxes, mining licenses taxes and fisheries business taxes. The department estimates that maximum impact would be $122,250,000. He added that they realize that the figure is a high range. Number 282 SENATOR TAYLOR moved that SSSB 223 be passed out of committee with individual recommendations. Hearing no objection, it was so ordered.