Legislature(1995 - 1996)

03/20/1996 02:00 PM CRA

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
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        HB 361 CAP PROJ MATCHING GRANT FOR INDIAN RESERV                      
                                                                              
 SENATOR TORGERSON brought HB 361 before the committee as the next             
 order of business.                                                            
                                                                               
 Number 165                                                                    
                                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE JERRY MACKIE, prime sponsor of HB 361, explained he            
 introduced the legislation at the request of the Metlakatla Indian            
 Community when their FY 96 Municipal Assistance Matching Grant                
 Program appropriation was eliminated from last year's budget.                 
 Metlakatla qualified for this program under the Department of                 
 Administration regulations definition for "municipality."                     
                                                                               
 HB 361 amends AS 37.06 (Capital Project Matching Grants Programs)             
 by adding a new section that includes a municipality organized                
 under federal law as an Indian reserve.  The bill has been drafted            
 to specifically include the Metlakatla Indian Community within the            
 Municipal Assistance Matching Grant Program.  It also provides that           
 Metlakatla may not receive a grant under the Unincorporated                   
 Community Capital Project Matching Grant Program.                             
                                                                               
 Representative Macki said it was clearly the intent of the original           
 Act to include Metlakatla, but because it has a little different              
 classification meaning a municipality organized under federal law             
 as an Indian Reserve, the technical language didn't cover that.               
                                                                               
 Representative Macki noted there has been some question as to                 
 whether or not this would open up the door to issues relating to              
 Indian lands and tribal status in qualifying for these grants, but            
 he has received an opinion from the attorney general that says it             
 will not because it is very specific in the legislation that it has           
 to be a municipality organized under federal law that existed                 
 before enactment of 43 U.S.C. 1618(a).                                        
                                                                               
 Number 215                                                                    
                                                                               
 SENATOR TORGERSON pointed out the most recent fiscal note on the              
 bill shows that $16,609 would need to come out of other                       
 communities' grants to make this transition.  REPRESENTATIVE MACKI            
 responded he does not think it is an added fiscal note; it shows              
 how the $19,000 that should have gone to Metlakatla last year was             
 actually distributed.  In his opinion it is a positive fiscal note            
 for the other communities until this legislation is passed and the            
 statute is clarified.  He does not believe that it should be                  
 interpreted as taking away from other communities because they've             
 actually been getting extra money because Metlakatla was not                  
 included.                                                                     
                                                                               
 Number 250                                                                    
                                                                               
 SENATOR ZHAROFF moved HB 361 be passed out of committee with                  
 individual recommendations.  Hearing no objection, it was so                  
 ordered.                                                                      

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