Legislature(1999 - 2000)

05/17/1999 09:25 AM FIN

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
 HOUSE BILL NO. 87                                                                                                              
"An Act relating to money credited to the account of                                                                            
the state in the unemployment trust fund by the                                                                                 
Secretary of the Treasury of the United States; and                                                                             
providing for an effective date."                                                                                               
DWIGHT PERKINS, Deputy Commissioner, Department of Labor was                                                                    
invited to join the committee.  He commented briefly in                                                                         
support of the bill.                                                                                                            
In response to a question by Senator Phillips, Mr. Perkins                                                                      
said the funding was for equipment and other related                                                                            
Senator Green asked if this was something that would show up                                                                    
in next year's budget?  Mr. Perkins said he did not think it                                                                    
would but would defer to Ms. Gamez from Division of                                                                             
Employment Security.                                                                                                            
REBECCA GAMEZ, Director, Division of Employment Security                                                                        
Division, Department of Labor was invited to join the                                                                           
committee.  She responded briefly to Senator Green's query.                                                                     
Mr. Perkins said they were not part of the legislation                                                                          
concerning Y2K.  They were doing their own upgrades and                                                                         
compliance checks with Federal dollars.                                                                                         
Co-chair Torgerson asked for a copy of the Federal                                                                              
regulations.  Mr. Perkins said he would provide the                                                                             
committee with a copy.  There is no GF in unemployment funds                                                                    
responded Mr. Perkins in answer to a query from Co-chair                                                                        
Ms. Gamez said the Federal government had not given states                                                                      
back any money was in about thirty years.  She further                                                                          
advised that these monies would be spent on administration,                                                                     
including capital expenditures, salaries, lease costs, and                                                                      
anything that has to do with the administration of the                                                                          
program.  She will check and see if there is a time limit on                                                                    
the spending of these funds.  She believed it was three                                                                         
years. Currently, they have authority to use Federal                                                                            
unidentified funds.                                                                                                             
They must upgrade their system because they are now                                                                             
obsolete.  They must make sure it will happen and hope that                                                                     
it will come under the Reed Act.                                                                                                
Senator Green asked if these monies would supplant any other                                                                    
funds that may have been used more broadly?  Ms. Gomez said                                                                     
these questions were asked in the House and she will supply                                                                     
a copy of this information.  She referred specifically to a                                                                     
letter to Representative Rokeberg.  Copies of this letter                                                                       
will also be provided the committee.  Included in the packet                                                                    
is a response to a question by Co-chair Torgerson that there                                                                    
was a two-year limit to expend the funds.                                                                                       
Co-chair Torgerson said he would SET ASIDE HB 87 at this                                                                        
time pending receipt of requested information.                                                                                  
The committee took a five-minute recess.                                                                                        
Co-chair Torgerson reconvened the committee at approximately                                                                    
10:12 A.M.  He called HB 227.                                                                                                   

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