Legislature(1995 - 1996)

04/11/1995 10:05 AM FIN

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
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       SENATE BILL NO. 87                                                      
       "An Act relating to community local options for control                 
  of         alcoholic  beverages; relating to the control  of                 
  alcoholic          beverages; relating to  the definition of                 
  'alcoholic beverage';       relating to purchase and sale of                 
  alcoholic  beverages;  relating           to alcohol  server                 
  education courses; and  providing for an           effective                 
  date."                                                                       
                                                                               
  Senator Donley spoke  to Amendment  K.7. He  stated that  it                 
  deals  with making  it  a violation  to frequent  an illegal                 
  gambling  establishment.  He  said that it  is difficult for                 
  the  owners  of the  legal  establishments because  they are                 
  frequently accused of the improper  activity that goes on at                 
  the illegal  establishments where they  are serving alcohol.                 
  After bar hours,  people will  continue to find  a place  to                 
  drink.  When they  find an establishment that is  not legal,                 
  they  are not subject to  the same kinds  of controls as the                 
  legal establishments exhibit.   This is  a tool to help  the                 
  law enforcement keep people  out of these places, by  way of                 
  issuing a  citation, which  is a violation  to frequent  the                 
  illegal establishments.  The bill did  pass the House in the                 
  1988 session, but did not make it through the Senate.                        
                                                                               
  Senator  Donley  MOVED  Amendment  #2  and it  was  ADOPTED.                 
  Senator Donley  stated that he has been in conversation with                 
  the Department  of Law, the  Department of Revenue,  and Mr.                 
  Sharrock, who is available  in Anchorage for teleconference,                 
  regarding Amendment #1. In response to the questions brought                 
  up at the last committee meeting, Senator Donley pointed out                 
                                                                               
                                                                               
  the  packet sent  by  Teresa  Williams,  Assistant  Attorney                 
  General in Anchorage,  who is handling the  illegal gambling                 
  cases  that  involve  licensed premises.    The  information                 
  provides a list of 5 cases which have occurred since July of                 
  1990  regarding  liquor  licensees  who  were  convicted  of                 
  criminal violations of  the gambling  laws. The Division  of                 
  Gaming does not enforce illegal gambling activities, because                 
  their  charge is  to  regulate  legal  gambling  activities.                 
  Illegal gambling activities are regulated by the troopers or                 
  Department of Law.  The activity in the 5 cases consisted of                 
  slot  machines,  which  is  clearly  prohibited  by statute.                 
  These were the particular sanctions  they were given by  the                 
  ABC Board.  The ABC Board is free to sanction them from zero                 
  to full  revocation of their licenses.  There are provisions                 
  of violations  of Title 4,  which are more  restrictive than                 
  that, but these are criminal law  violations and they have a                 
  general provision  in the code  that allows  them to  pursue                 
  sanctions which are in the public  interest that do not have                 
  specific guidelines.  He modified Amendment #1,  to change 3                 
  months  to  6  months  for   suspension  of  license.  On  a                 
  subsequent  offense,  there  would be  a  revocation  of the                 
  license."  He stressed that this is not for violation of our                 
  legalized  gaming statutes, but  only for criminal gambling.                 
  He indicated that he wanted to add a new subparagraph C that                 
  would  read,  "if   the  Board  receives  notice   from  the                 
  Department  of  Revenue, that  a  licensee or  permittee has                 
  violated  a  provision of  AS  05.15,(the charitable  gaming                 
  provisions  relating  to gaming),  the  Board may  suspend a                 
  license or permit, and  shall suspend for at least  30 days,                 
  if the offense is the person's second violation.                             
                                                                               
  Senator  Donley   introduced  Amendment  #3.     This  would                 
  restructure the  ABC Board.   Currently there is  a mandated                 
  requirement of two  members of the  Board to be involved  in                 
  industry.   The  amendment  would make  it clear  that three                 
  members of the  Board should  represent the general  public.                 
  Currently,  two members have to  be from industry, but there                 
  is no limit.  The amendment adds an ethics provision stating                 
  that of those two persons who represent  the general public,                 
  immediate family members  could not be directly  involved in                 
  the industry.  The provision would also state that to make a                 
  quorum,  at least two of  the members would  have to be from                 
  the general public.  Currently, the quorum can be made up of                 
  two members  from  the  industry  and one  member  from  the                 
  general public.  Senator Donley MOVED Amendment #3.  Senator                 
  Frank  inquired  as  to  the  language  regarding "immediate                 
  family".                                                                     
                                                                               
  Senator Sharp indicated his concerns regarding Section 1, in                 
  that it does not  restrict the number of people  involved in                 
  counseling on the Board.  It could be all three.   He stated                 
  he did not mind that exclusion, as  long as there is a limit                 
  as to those represented from industry, he would want a limit                 
  on other interests groups.                                                   
                                                                               
                                                                               
  Senator Sharp MOVED a Conceptual  Amendment to Amendment #3.                 
  Beginning on  page  1, line  19,  after the  words  "alcohol                 
  beverage industry.",  eliminate the period  and state,  "not                 
  more than two members shall  represent counseling or related                 
  services". No objection having been raised, it was ADOPTED.                  
                                                                               
  Senator Rieger inquired  as to the  clause on line 16  which                 
  reads,  "engaged in any  aspect of".   Senator Donley stated                 
  that it would be  anyone having a financial interest  in the                 
  industry, either ownership or employed by the industry.  Co-                 
  chair  Frank asked if  there are  alcohol counselors  on the                 
  Board? Senator Donley  stated that in  the past there was  a                 
  counselor. Senator Phillips MOVED a  Friendly Amendment.  On                 
  page 1, line  16, delete  the word "aspect",  and after  the                 
  word "any" add "financial interest in".  No objection having                 
  been raised, it was ADOPTED.                                                 
                                                                               
  Co-chair  Halford   asked  for  a  show of  hands  in moving                 
  Amendment  #3.  By a show of hands Amendment #3 was ADOPTED.                 
  Senator Donley introduced Amendment #4.   He stated that  it                 
  is an empowerment  of community  councils to better  protect                 
  their own neighborhoods.  This shifts  the balance of  power                 
  toward the community councils, but with  a check that if the                 
  assembly thinks it is in the best interest of the community,                 
  they can still  do it.   Senator Donley MOVED Amendment  #4.                 
  Senator  Sharp OBJECTED based  on the unanimous  vote of the                 
  assembly.                                                                    
                                                                               
  Co-chair Frank asked what is  the circumstance regarding the                 
  city  boroughs, do they have absolute veto power, or is it a                 
  recommendation to  the ABC  Board?   Ms. Williams  responded                 
  that  the  Board  may not  overturn  a  protest  by a  local                 
  governing body unless it finds it arbitrary, capricious, and                 
  unreasonable.    Co-chair  Halford  pointed  out  that  this                 
  amendment also  provides for extra  territorial jurisdiction                 
  in areas of overlapping councils.  There may be two or three                 
  councils with authority over one location.                                   
  Senator  Sharp  asked  if  community  councils  are  elected                 
  through the regular election procedure  of the unified city?                 
  Senator  Donley  responded  that  they  are elected  to  the                 
  council.  Senator Donley MOVED an Amendment to Amendment #4,                 
  stating a  requirement of  two-thirds the  vote rather  than                 
  unanimous. Without objection, the Amendment to the Amendment                 
  the show of hands, the amended Amendment #4 FAILED.                          
                                                                               
  Senator  Sharp  MOVED  Amendment #5.    No  objections being                 
  heard,  Amendment  #5  was ADOPTED.    Senator  Donley MOVED                 
  Amendment #1.  He explained  that this  amendment would  set                 
  guidelines  for  appropriate  penalties  for convictions  of                 
  illegal  gambling  activity,  and  separate  standards   for                 
  violations for  charitable gaming laws by  liquor licensees.                 
                                                                               
                                                                               
  This  would also  establish for  a criminal  violation  by a                 
  licensee, that the  Board would suspend  for a period of  at                 
  least 6 months.   A second  criminal offense would call  for                 
  permanent revocation.  A violation  of the charitable gaming                 
  laws would mean a discretionary penalty.  A second violation                 
  for the gaming  statutes, it  would mean at  least a  30-day                 
  suspension.  There is also a  provision that the Division of                 
  Gaming would notify the Alcohol  Control Beverage Board when                 
  there has  been a  violation. Co-chair  Halford stated  that                 
  this  amendment  requires  a conviction  in  criminal  court                 
  subject  to  the  protection  of  the due  process.  Without                 
  objection Amendment #1 was ADOPTED.                                          
                                                                               
  Senator   Sharp   MOVED  CSSB   87  (FIN)   with  individual                 
  recommendations and a  zero fiscal note from  the Department                 
  of Revenue.   Without objection CSSB  87 (FIN) was  REPORTED                 
  OUT of  committee with a  "do pass" recommendation  from Co-                 
  chairs Halford and  Frank and  Senators Phillips and  Sharp.                 
  Senators Rieger and Donley signed "no recommendations".                      
                                                                               
  Further discussion on SB 87 is at the end of the text.                       
                                                                               
                                                                               
  Co-chair Halford returned to SB 87.   Senator Phillips MOVED                 
  to delete Section  30.  By a  show of hands, Section  30 was                 
  DELETED from the CS 37 (JUD).  Senator Donley brought to the                 
  attention  of  the committee  Section  49.    He  said  that                 
  Subsection C (2)  the question of whether  local communities                 
  can put a sales tax on alcohol unless there is another sales                 
  tax in that  area.  Conversation  on clarity with regard  to                 
  taxation transpired.   Senator Donley MOVED to  delete after                 
  the  word "sales" on line 29, "if sales taxes are imposed on                 
  other sales within  the municipality".   By a show of  hands                 
  the Amendment FAILED.   Senator Phillips MOVED  CSSB 87(JUD)                 
  with individual  recommendations. No objection  being heard,                 
  CSSB 87 (JUD) was REPORTED OUT of committee.                                 
                                                                               
  At approximately 11:00 a.m. the meeting RECESSED.                            
                                                                               

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