Legislature(2001 - 2002)

03/31/2001 10:00 AM FIN

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
                                                                                                                                
     CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 103(FIN)(brf sup maj fld)                                                                            
     "An Act making appropriations for the operating and loan                                                                   
     program expenses of state government, for certain programs,                                                                
     and to capitalize funds; and providing for an effective date."                                                             
                                                                                                                                
     CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 104(FIN)                                                                                             
     "An Act making appropriations for the operating and capital                                                                
     expenses of the state's integrated comprehensive mental health                                                             
     program; and providing for an effective date."                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Donley  announced  testimony  would  be limited  to  three                                                            
minutes.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
[Note: Teleconference is poor quality, portions are inaudible.]                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
JOHN  HOLST,  Superintendent  of  Schools,   Sitka  School  District                                                            
testified  via teleconference  from Sitka  to request the  Committee                                                            
fully fund the cost of pupil transportation.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Donley interrupted  to inform  the  witness the  committee                                                            
substitute  adopted   at  the  previous  hearing  fully   funds  the                                                            
governor's request for pupil transportation.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Mr.  Holst  spoke in  favor  of funding  K-12  education.  He  noted                                                            
increased oil revenues  for the state compared to the fixed costs of                                                            
school districts.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Donley stated that  although the  higher price of  oil did                                                            
assist the  FY 01 budget, the Committee  was now considering  the FY                                                            
02 budget  and the Department  of Revenue  predicted a $527  million                                                            
deficit  for FY 02.  This amount,  he pointed  out is approximately                                                             
one-sixth of balance  in the Capital Budget Reserve  (CBR) fund, and                                                            
therefore, the state is financially strong.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
THOMAS  CONLEY, Sitka  School Board,  testified  via teleconference                                                             
from  Sitka  about  his  interest  in  the  high  school  qualifying                                                            
examinations.  He  appreciated   the  funds  appropriated  for  this                                                            
effort.  He spoke  to  the need  to reevaluate  the  school  funding                                                            
formula,  although he  noted the  matter would  require significant                                                             
consideration  given the amount  of money involved.  He told  of the                                                            
budget difficulties  in his school district and asserted,  "We don't                                                            
have any choice in terms of serving the children in Sitka."                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MARK GORMAN,  Vice-President, Community  Health Services,  Southeast                                                            
Alaska   Regional   Health   Consortium   (SEARHC)   testified   via                                                            
teleconference  from Sitka about the  "intent to eliminate  the BRUs                                                            
(Budget Request  Unit)". This relates  to direct funding  for public                                                            
regional  health care providers.  He detailed  the various  services                                                            
his organization  offers  and the  people served.  He added he  also                                                            
supports funding for education.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MOLLIE  KABLER, Member,  Sitka School  Board,  and Co-Chair,  Alaska                                                            
Public Broadcasting  Commission, testified  via teleconference  from                                                            
Sitka  about the  efforts of  the Board  and the  School  District's                                                            
staff to secure the maximum  amount of grant funds to compensate for                                                            
the  reduced  amount  received  through  the  education   foundation                                                            
funding formula.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Kabler  then described  the efforts  to provide  as much  public                                                            
broadcasting  services despite declining  budgets over the  past ten                                                            
years. She  told of the  Satellite Air Connection  Project,  a joint                                                            
venture between  public broadcasting  and the University  of Alaska.                                                            
She noted  funding for  this project  has been  appropriated  by the                                                            
House  of  Representatives  but  not  the  Senate.  She  listed  the                                                            
services that  depend on the satellite project, including  Gavel-to-                                                            
Gavel coverage,  and radio and television  service to Rural  Alaska.                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Senator Ward shared that  he learned from the Administration that no                                                            
satellite  services  would  be  disrupted  if  the  funds  were  not                                                            
appropriated  to  the project  in  FY 02.  He noted  a supplemental                                                             
budget request would be  submitted the next legislative session when                                                            
the actual project cost is determined.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
LARRY  KING,  Changing  Tides  Counseling  Services,  testified  via                                                            
teleconference  from Petersburg  about  the drug  and alcohol  abuse                                                            
outpatient  services his organization  provides and the high  demand                                                            
across the state. He asserted  the cost of not treating these people                                                            
"is immense."  As a  result, he  could not understand  the logic  of                                                            
reducing  funding for this  program. He opposed  the changes  to the                                                            
BRU method of funding.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
KEVIN MURPHY,  Deputy Director, Gateway  Center for Human  Services,                                                            
and President, Statewide  Substance Abuse Directors Association, and                                                            
Licensed Mental Health  Councilor, testified via teleconference from                                                            
Ketchikan to request  the Committee to reconsider  budget reductions                                                            
to  substance   abuse  treatment   services.  He  referenced   other                                                            
legislation related  to increased law enforcement  efforts and noted                                                            
substance abuse is a public  health issue as well as a public safety                                                            
matter.  He asserted  one infant  born with  fetal alcohol  syndrome                                                            
would cost the state over $1 million.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
AUDRA THORPE  testified via teleconference  from Ketchikan  that she                                                            
is "a concerned  citizen with four children here in  Ketchikan." She                                                            
stressed  the need for the  substance abuse  programs for youth  and                                                            
told of  friends  of her children  who are  need of  help for  their                                                            
medical problem rather then incarceration.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
MIKE DUNNING,  Educator, University  of Alaska-Southeast,  Ketchikan                                                            
Campus,  testified  via teleconference  from  Ketchikan  to ask  the                                                            
Committee to fully fund  the University of Alaska budget request. He                                                            
applauded President  Mark Hamilton's campaign for  additional funds.                                                            
                                                                                                                                
WOODY WILSON,  Superintendent of Schools, Wrangell  School District,                                                            
testified via  teleconference from  Wrangell, to request  additional                                                            
funds  for  K-12   Education  in  his  district.  He   compared  the                                                            
appropriation amount proposed  in this budget to higher amounts from                                                            
previous years. He spoke  of increased mandates and the difficulties                                                            
in funding  them with  existing funds.  He recommended reevaluating                                                             
the education  foundation funding formula. He thanked  the Committee                                                            
for funding  the  pupil transportation  increment.  He also  thanked                                                            
Senator Green for her efforts  on the high school exit examinations.                                                            
                                                                                                                                
JIM CULLEY, President,  Wrangell Chamber of Commerce,  testified via                                                            
teleconference   from  Wrangell,   about   the  Chamber's   concerns                                                            
regarding the House of  Representative's recommendations for funding                                                            
reductions  to the  Alaska Marine  Highway System.  He stressed  the                                                            
ferry system is a major  form of transportation in his community and                                                            
should be funded to the fullest extent possible.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
AT EASE 10:30 AM / 10:45 AM                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
BARBARA  DELONG, Sitka School  Board, testified  via teleconference                                                             
from Sitka to thank the  Committee for giving priority to education,                                                            
particularly pupil  transportation. She told of the  unexpected loss                                                            
of  120  students  from  the  school  district   and  the  resulting                                                            
reduction  in  formula  funding.  She  appreciated  the  efforts  of                                                            
Senator Wilken  to make changes to the education foundation  funding                                                            
formula.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
LAWRENCE  BLOOD,  Executive  Director, Sitka  Chamber  of  Commerce,                                                            
testified via  teleconference from Sitka to stress  the urgency of a                                                            
$300,000   allocation  for   education.  He   also  reiterated   the                                                            
importance  of funding the  Alaska Marine  Highway System.  He noted                                                            
the direction  given to the Department of Transportation  and Public                                                            
Facilities to "take measures  to reduce operating costs and increase                                                            
revenue."  In  his opinion,  reducing  operating  costs  requires  a                                                            
reduction  of  services  and  Sitka could  not  afford  any  further                                                            
service reductions.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
AT EASE until 11:00 AM                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Donley  announced that due to the number  of people waiting                                                            
to testify in Fairbanks,  testimony would be limited to two minutes.                                                            
                                                                                                                                
TED FATHAUER testified  via teleconference from Fairbanks to request                                                            
full funding  of the University of  Alaska proposed budget.  He told                                                            
of his faith in  the Board of Regents and University  administrators                                                            
and the practice of planning  a budget based not on the amount "they                                                            
think they  can get"  but rather  on the amount  "they think  Alaska                                                            
needs." He pointed out  that he and his wife are not employed by the                                                            
University,  nor are they students,  yet they donated $5,000  to the                                                            
University.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
BARBARA  COOK,  Student,  University  of  Alaska-Fairbanks,   Tanana                                                            
Valley  Campus, testified  via  teleconference  from Fairbanks  that                                                            
full  funding  of  the  University  is  justified   and "extremely"                                                             
important  to Fairbanks  and the State  of Alaska.  She told  of her                                                            
retraining activities  after the company she worked  for went out of                                                            
business.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
NORMITA  CRUZEN-HALES,  Single Mother,  and Student  of a course  in                                                            
Hospitality  offered  by the  University  of Alaska,  testified  via                                                            
teleconference  from Fairbanks, to gratefully requested  funding for                                                            
this  program that  would  allow her  to  obtain employment  in  the                                                            
tourism  industry.  She  emphasized   the  need  for  education  and                                                            
training for people receiving public assistance.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
DEE GARRETT,  Lifelong Alaskan,  testified  via teleconference  from                                                            
Fairbanks  that she  is also enrolled  in the  hospitality  training                                                            
program at  the Tanana Valley Campus,  which offers a "wide  variety                                                            
of career  opportunities"  in the tourism  industry. She stated  the                                                            
students in this  program are all working toward the  goal to better                                                            
their  education,  find  a  job they  could  excel  in,  to  achieve                                                            
financial  security,  and  to  provide  the best  services  for  the                                                            
community.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
ART BUSWELL testified  via teleconference from Fairbanks  in support                                                            
of fully funding  the University's budget. He stated  that increased                                                            
state funding  has "inspired"  others to  donate to the University,                                                             
which has provided  scholarships and funds for programs.  He told of                                                            
a recent hospitalization  and the  quality of care he received  from                                                            
staff members who regularly reside out of state.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
KEN SEVERIN,  Volunteer, Alaska One  and KUAC Radio and Television,                                                             
testified  via teleconference  from Fairbanks  in support of  public                                                            
television and  the University of Alaska. He spoke  to the satellite                                                            
program  and  the  necessity  of  the  project  due  to  changes  in                                                            
technology.  He warned  of the  communications that  would be  "shut                                                            
down" if the project were not funded.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
CAROL STABLES  testified via teleconference from Fairbanks  that the                                                            
public must  be aware of  the dangers of  tobacco use. She  asserted                                                            
that a smoker is "as helpless  as an alcoholic or a drug addict" and                                                            
needs professional  help. She requested  funding for such  programs.                                                            
                                                                                                                                
SOLVEIG  PEDERSON, Lifelong  Alaskan and three-year  student  of the                                                            
University  of Alaska, testified via  teleconference from  Fairbanks                                                            
to thank  the Legislature  for funding  appropriated the  University                                                            
the previous  year. She  shared that due  to financial constraints,                                                             
she was unable to complete her education.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
EVEVA BECKER testified  via teleconference from Fairbanks  about the                                                            
use of  revenues generated  from the tobacco  tax. She stated  there                                                            
are two clinics in Fairbanks  that offer smoking cessation programs,                                                            
but that funds  are needed. She stressed  that 400 people  in Alaska                                                            
would die this year from tobacco-related illnesses.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
KATHLEEN  BEASINGER, Student,  University of  Alaska, testified  via                                                            
teleconference  from Fairbanks that  she would graduate in  May 2001                                                            
with an Associate  of Arts degree  in Applied Business and  that she                                                            
planned to  continue to work toward  her Bachelors degree.  She said                                                            
the quality of education is excellent.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
STACEY  BANKS,  Student   Body  President,  University   of  Alaska-                                                            
Fairbanks testified  via teleconference from Fairbanks  to thank the                                                            
Legislature  for the investment it  made to the University  over the                                                            
past  few years.  He  assured  that  although  testimony  requesting                                                            
University  funding may appear negative,  it is only because  of the                                                            
desire to see the full potential of the University realized.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
SFC 01 # 59, Side B                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Banks continued the University is a "very wise investment."                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
THOMAS  WALKER,   Student,  University  of  Alaska,   testified  via                                                            
teleconference  from Fairbanks  about the  increased support  of the                                                            
Legislature to the University  over the past three years he has been                                                            
enrolled.  He stated  that continued  funding  is the  only way  the                                                            
University could grow.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
LARRY  DUFFY,  Chair,   Faculty  Alliance,  University   of  Alaska,                                                            
testified  via  teleconference   from  Fairbanks  that  the  faculty                                                            
supports  full  funding  of  the University's  budget.  He  told  of                                                            
efforts in developing  long-term plans for the requested  funding to                                                            
reduce the "brain drain" of students from Alaska.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
HAN GUNDERSON,  Student,  University of  Alaska-Fairbanks  testified                                                            
via  teleconference  from Fairbanks  to ask  the  Committee for  the                                                            
requested  $16.9 million  funding  increase for  the University.  He                                                            
stated that in  the past few years the University  has "risen like a                                                            
phoenix"  and has new pride,  hopes and dreams  about the future  of                                                            
Alaska.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
JERRY MCBEATH testified  via teleconference from Fairbanks about his                                                            
extensive  involvement in  University organizations  and efforts  to                                                            
advance   the  University   [teleconference   audio  poor   quality-                                                            
inaudible.] He  noted the requested $16.9 funding  increase includes                                                            
salary increases for University employees.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
SHANNON UZZELL, Four-year  Graduate, University of Alaska-Fairbanks,                                                            
and "productive  member  of society", testified  via teleconference                                                             
from  Fairbanks  to  thank  the  Committee  for  funding   increases                                                            
appropriated to the University  the previous year and to detail what                                                            
those  increases   purchased.   She  stated   that  the   university                                                            
experience provides a "holistic" education.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
KATHY HELFRICK testified  via teleconference from Fairbanks that she                                                            
has spent the previous  eight years in Fairbanks as a private-sector                                                            
employer  in the  hospitality  services industry.  She  told of  her                                                            
frustrations  with the inability to  recruit qualified, skilled  and                                                            
semi-skilled  Alaskans to fill  jobs. She stated  that she  chose to                                                            
"become  part of the  solution" by  leaving the  private sector  and                                                            
begin  teaching  others  the  skills  needed   for  the hospitality                                                             
industry at the Tanana Valley Campus.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
KATE MCELROY, Supervisor  of a children's learning center affiliated                                                            
with  a  Native  association  [details  inaudible],   testified  via                                                            
teleconference   from  Fairbanks   about  the  long-term   treatment                                                            
programs  offered at the  center. She talked  about the 27  women on                                                            
the center's waiting list  and pointed out that most of the patients                                                            
who voluntarily enter the  treatment program have had their children                                                            
removed  from  their  care  by the  Division  of  Family  and  Youth                                                            
Services.  She stated that  providing treatment  services for  these                                                            
mothers   allows  them   to  reestablish   their  families,   obtain                                                            
employment and avoid incarceration.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
SHARON MCLEOD-EVERETT,  Lifelong  Alaskan,  Employee, Department  of                                                            
Transportation  and Public Facilities, testified via  teleconference                                                            
from  Fairbanks  about  University  funding.   She  appreciated  the                                                            
increased  funding   provided  the  previous  year  and   encouraged                                                            
continued  funding  in the  upcoming fiscal  year.  She stated  that                                                            
attention is  paid toward resource  development, but little  is paid                                                            
toward "human development".                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
LISA VILLANO testified  via teleconference from Fairbanks in support                                                            
of funding  the  requested  $16.9 million  for the  University.  She                                                            
stated  that  without   the  additional  funding  appropriated   the                                                            
previous year many new programs would not have been possible.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
ANNETTE   FREIBURGER,    Executive   Director,   Fairbanks    Native                                                            
Association, testified  via teleconference from Fairbanks to request                                                            
funding  for four  treatment  centers  for  drug and  alcohol  abuse                                                            
operated  by  the   Association.  She  stressed  the   programs  are                                                            
"extremely vital to our  community" and the surrounding rural areas.                                                            
She stated  funding has  been reduced  over the  past ten years  and                                                            
continuation of the programs is difficult.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
CHARLIE DEXTER,  27-year resident  of Fairbanks and 1977  University                                                            
of Alaska-Fairbanks   graduate, testified  via  teleconference  from                                                            
Fairbanks  that his  degree  is in  Travel Industry  Management.  He                                                            
noted this program is no  longer available due to funding reductions                                                            
in the  past. He thanked  the Committee for  the additional  funding                                                            
allocated the  previous year. He stated he left a  successful career                                                            
in the aviation  industry to become a faculty member  in the Applied                                                            
Business and Accounting  Department at the Tanana  Valley Campus. He                                                            
said  the additional  funding  allowed  the  Department  to hire  an                                                            
additional  instructor  and  continued funding  would  provide  more                                                            
staff  to serve  the  growing number  of  students enrolled  in  the                                                            
program.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
MARTA  MUELLER,   Graduate  Student,   Department  of  Biology   and                                                            
Wildlife,    University   of   Alaska-Fairbanks,    testified    via                                                            
teleconference  from Fairbanks, "students  are not being  considered                                                            
impressionable  because of our valuable brains and  the whirlwind of                                                            
ideas blowing  through campus." She  stated that when she  graduated                                                            
from Palmer High  School in 1991, she was impressionable  and the US                                                            
News and World  Report listed the University of Alaska-Fairbanks  as                                                            
one  of  the  top ten  universities  in  the  West.  "That  made  an                                                            
impression  on me."  However,  by the time  she  graduated from  the                                                            
University of Alaska in  1995, the University "was no where near the                                                            
top ten of much of anything."  She said is because "flat funding had                                                            
taken its  toll." She said  that increased  funding in recent  years                                                            
has reversed this trend and improved the University.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MICHAEL  EVERETT  testified  via teleconference  from  Fairbanks  to                                                            
request  the Committee  fully fund  the Board  of Regent's  proposed                                                            
budget. He  gave his history as a  construction worker in  Fairbanks                                                            
until the  housing market  slowed,  when he returned  to school.  He                                                            
said that while he was  in school, his family would not have had any                                                            
meat to eat  except that his wife  was able to go moose hunting.  He                                                            
said  the University  could  provide  qualified workers  for  Alaska                                                            
businesses.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
LUKE HOPKINS,  Past Student and Current Staff Member,  University of                                                            
Alaska-Fairbanks,  testified  via teleconference  from Fairbanks  in                                                            
support  of fully  funding  the University's  operating  budget.  He                                                            
stated that  each day he sees the  rewards of the research  programs                                                            
that resulted from the increased funding from the previous year.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
CINDY BACHERT, [affiliation  inaudible] testified via teleconference                                                            
from Fairbanks  to request that 30 percent of the  revenues received                                                            
from the tobacco  settlement be allocated to smoking  prevention and                                                            
cessation  efforts.  She  told  of a  program  she  participates  in                                                            
[details  inaudible.]  She  added  that she  is  a graduate  of  the                                                            
University  of Alaska and  is considering  returning for a  Master's                                                            
degree that  would allow  her to better educate  young people  about                                                            
the dangers of tobacco use.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MARGARET    WILSON    [affiliation    inaudible]    testified    via                                                            
teleconference from Fairbanks  regarding mental health and community                                                            
health [testimony inaudible].                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
RUTHAMAE KARR  [affiliation inaudible] testified via  teleconference                                                            
from Fairbanks  that her position is partially funded  with revenues                                                            
from the tobacco  settlement. She  stated more funds are  needed for                                                            
tobacco-related issues.  She expressed that it is difficult to build                                                            
a comprehensive  plan on a small budget. She detailed  the chemicals                                                            
in cigarettes and the difficulty to quit smoking.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
ROBERT BIRD  [affiliation  inaudible] testified  via teleconference                                                             
from Fairbanks to the need  for $8.1 million to operate an effective                                                            
anti-smoking campaign.  He referenced testimony in  favor of funding                                                            
the education system but  asked what benefit funding education would                                                            
have when smokers  are dying of cancer and people  are mentally ill.                                                            
                                                                                                                                
CARL BENSON,  Faculty Member,  Geological  Institute, University  of                                                            
Alaska-Fairbanks,  testified  via teleconference  from Fairbanks  to                                                            
urge  the Committee  to  fully fund  the  University  of Alaska.  He                                                            
stressed that  he knows first-hand  the importance of the  Institute                                                            
to the University.  He said he would  submit additional information                                                             
to the Committee members.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Donley  asked if the witness  did instruction, research  or                                                            
both.                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Benson answered he does both, as do all the faculty members.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Donley  disagreed,  stating  there  are over  100  faculty                                                            
members that do no instruction.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Benson countered  that although he primarily conducts  research,                                                            
all  faculty   members  of   the  Geophysical   Institute   do  some                                                            
instruction.  He stated  that he  is retired  from active  teaching,                                                            
although  he does work with  graduate students.  He pointed  out his                                                            
salary comes from grants.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
JOE HARDENBROOK testified  via teleconference from Fairbanks that he                                                            
was present  when President  Hamilton addressed  the Senate  Finance                                                            
Committee a  few weeks prior and clarified  that President  Hamilton                                                            
stated all faculty  who are funded with state funds  are involved in                                                            
teaching. Mr.  Hardenbrook spoke to the "incredible  ability" of the                                                            
University to secure funding from outside sources.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
H.B. TELLING testified  via teleconference from Fairbanks to ask the                                                            
Committee  to support  the  Board of  Regent's funding  request.  He                                                            
stated  that  when  he graduated   from high  school  in  1996,  the                                                            
University   was  "a   joke"  to   him.  He   said  buildings   were                                                            
disintegrating  and  programs  were being  reduced  constantly,  but                                                            
financial restraints  resulted in  his attending the University.  He                                                            
remarked  that with recent  funding increases,  the conditions  have                                                            
improved  and  the   University  has  received  significant   public                                                            
support.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
RUTH  L'HOMMEDIEU,   Chair,   State  Independent   Living   Council,                                                            
testified via teleconference  from Fairbanks about repeated requests                                                            
for an increment increase  in the independent living budget over the                                                            
past   several  years.   She  appreciated   the   $98,000   increase                                                            
recommended by the budget  subcommittee pointing out it is the first                                                            
increase in 16 years.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
RON DIXON,  Chair,  University  of Alaska-Fairbanks,  Tanana  Valley                                                            
Campus  Community Advisory  Council,  testified  via teleconference                                                             
from  Fairbanks to  ask the  Committee  to consider  the  University                                                            
funding  request.   He  spoke  about  the  responsibility   and  the                                                            
accountability of the University.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
JOHN  YOUNG testified  via  teleconference  from Fairbanks  that  he                                                            
would  have been  unable to  attend school  if not  for the  funding                                                            
appropriated to the University the previous year.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
LOIS HILDENBRAND, Volunteer,  [affiliation inaudible], testified via                                                            
teleconference   from  Fairbanks   about  a  relay  drive   she  was                                                            
organizing.  She thanked the Committee  for fully funding  a tobacco                                                            
prevention program.  She told of leaving her son with  $100 when she                                                            
traveled recently and how  he spent the money, which was not how she                                                            
intended. She  asked the Committee  to spend the tobacco  settlement                                                            
funds as they were intended.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
DAVID LEONE,  Executive Director,  Resource  Center for Parents  and                                                            
Children, testified via teleconference from Fairbanks                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
SFC 01 # 60, Side A                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Mr.  Leone   requested  that   the  designated   funds  for   family                                                            
preservation  services  not be  transferred from  rural communities                                                             
into "the more  competitive nature"  of urban programs. He  asserted                                                            
this  would  cause  a  hardship  on  Native  communities.   He  also                                                            
requested funds not be  reduced for drug and alcohol abuse treatment                                                            
services. He noted fetal  alcohol syndrome is "totally preventable".                                                            
                                                                                                                                
VICTOR JOSEPH testified  via teleconference from Fairbanks about how                                                            
reductions to  the BRUs for public health services  would hamper the                                                            
ability to deliver services.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
JEAN  BECKER   testified  via  teleconference   from  Fairbanks   in                                                            
opposition  to  funding   reductions  to  alcohol   and  drug  abuse                                                            
treatment  programs as well  as changing  the designated BRU  grants                                                            
for public health nursing  to a competitive process. She told of the                                                            
"very strong  respect" she  has for public  health nurses and  their                                                            
efforts in  preventing child abuse  and fetal alcohol syndrome.  She                                                            
requested  the  Legislature  delay  making   funding  changes  until                                                            
recommendations  from  a  childcare  policy review  task  force  are                                                            
submitted.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
MARY  SHIELDS GROWER  testified  via teleconference  from  Fairbanks                                                            
about  her involvement  with  the  University  as a  student,  staff                                                            
member and  faculty. She said the  University has always  had a "can                                                            
do" attitude,  which has become stronger with the  funding increases                                                            
of recent years.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
MIKE DAKU,  Student, University of  Alaska-Fairbanks, Tanana  Valley                                                            
Campus, testified  via teleconference  from  Fairbanks that he  is a                                                            
participant  in the human service  technology program. He  supported                                                            
fully funding  the University. He stressed the need  for counselors.                                                            
                                                                                                                                
PAT RACE,  Student, University  of Alaska-Fairbanks,  testified  via                                                            
teleconference  from Fairbanks in support of the University  budget.                                                            
He also requested the Committee  develop a long-term fiscal plan for                                                            
the state.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
AARON SURING testified  via teleconference from Fairbanks to ask for                                                            
support for the University.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
JEANETTE GRASTO,  Advocate for people with mental  illness, National                                                            
Alliance  for the Mentally  Ill, testified  via teleconference  from                                                            
Fairbanks and listed her  credentials [details inaudible]. She spoke                                                            
of the Mental Health Trust  Authority and the need to address mental                                                            
illness and substance abuse in rural areas.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
KAREN  PARR,  Presiding   Officer,  Fairbanks  North   Star  Borough                                                            
Assembly and retired teacher  testified in Juneau, about her efforts                                                            
to try to improve  the quality of  schools. She gave suggestions  on                                                            
how  to  improve  schools  including  increases   to  the  education                                                            
foundation funding  formula rather then relying heavily  on one-time                                                            
grants.  She  asserted  the  key  to  improving  school  quality  is                                                            
improving  teacher quality  and that Alaska  must be competitive  in                                                            
attracting the best teachers.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Parr urged  support of the University  so that it could  provide                                                            
"an excellent  program  of teacher  training." She  added that  good                                                            
principals  and administrators  are also necessary.  She added  that                                                            
preschool education is also very important.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
JAKE POOLE, Director, Tanana Valley Campus, University of Alaska-                                                               
Fairbanks,  testified  via teleconference  from  Fairbanks that  the                                                            
Tanana Valley  Campus is a vocational-technical school.  He stressed                                                            
the Legislature  has  impacted this  campus significantly  over  the                                                            
past year with  the appropriation increase. He suggested  the return                                                            
on this investment is greater  then what would have been realized if                                                            
the  funds  were invested  in  the  stock  market.  He told  of  the                                                            
implementation  of  a  nursing  program  and  a  process  technology                                                            
program.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
MICHELLE  THOMAS testified  via teleconference  from Fairbanks  that                                                            
she  fully supports  funding  the  Board of  Regent's  FY 02  budget                                                            
request for the University  of Alaska. She emphasized the investment                                                            
of the University in the future of the state.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
HAJO EICKEN, Associate  Professor, Geophysics, University of Alaska-                                                            
Fairbanks,  testified via teleconference  from Fairbanks  to request                                                            
funding the University.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
AT EASE 12:25 PM \ 12:30 PM                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
ALICE  KEYES,  Yukon-Kuskokwim  Health  Corporation,  testified  via                                                            
teleconference  from Mountain  Village to say,  "the budget  is very                                                            
hard to  accept". She  specified there  is a need  for services  for                                                            
substance  abuse treatment.  She spoke to  positive changes  she has                                                            
seen in families.  She stated the appropriations made  to her region                                                            
have "been used very wisely."                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
JOANNE MARKLEY  testified via teleconference  from Mountain  Village                                                            
to share  she works  with abused  children. She  said there  are few                                                            
funds available in the region to treat alcohol and drug abuse.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
LUTHER AQUCHUCK, testified  via teleconference from Mountain Village                                                            
about "E.Q:  Emotional Quota" and  how it relates to workers  in the                                                            
mental health  care field. He stated that funding  for this field is                                                            
important.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
ELAINE  MANNING, State  Independent  Living Council,  testified  via                                                            
teleconference  from Glennallen to request an additional  $90,000 in                                                            
FY 02 [testimony inaudible].                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MAGGIE PAUKAN,  Yukon-Kuskokwim  Health Corporation,  testified  via                                                            
teleconference  from St. Mary's that  she is a recovering  alcoholic                                                            
and mother  of six children.  She stated  that she knows  first-hand                                                            
the impact alcoholism has on families.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
[Name inaudible], testified  via teleconference from St. Mary's that                                                            
she works for  the school district [remaining testimony  inaudible.]                                                            
                                                                                                                                
ROSLYN  GOODMAN, Retired  School  Librarian, Alaska  Association  of                                                            
School Librarians, testified  via teleconference from Pedro Bay that                                                            
a small portion  of the requested  $16.9 million for the  University                                                            
of Alaska would be used  to fund the Statewide Database Project. She                                                            
told of current  affairs and resource information  made available to                                                            
Alaskans over  the Internet as a result of previous  appropriations.                                                            
She stated  that President  Hamilton has  shown that the  University                                                            
"spends its money wisely"  and she encouraged the Committee to fully                                                            
fund the request.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
KAY DURHAM,  Vice President, Railbelt  Mental Health, testified  via                                                            
teleconference  from Healy to request the funding  method for public                                                            
mental health services  remain unchanged. She noted her organization                                                            
serves five  communities as  well as many  people visiting  from the                                                            
Lower  48  during  the  tourist  season.  She  listed  the  services                                                            
provided and asserted that  with the current funding levels, "we are                                                            
just a hair  breath away from meeting  some of these services  for a                                                            
healthy community."                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
SHERRIE  GOLL testified  via teleconference  from Haines  [testimony                                                            
inaudible].                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
ISRAEL NELSON, Executive  Director, Four Rivers Counseling Services,                                                            
testified  via teleconference  from McGrath  and referenced  written                                                            
testimony he  submitted. He requested  no funding reductions  to the                                                            
alcohol  and drug  abuse  treatment  grants. He  told  of the  added                                                            
transportation  and energy  expenses  of providing  services to  ten                                                            
villages and the need for continued funding.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
SINEON  JOHN,  Substance  Abuse Counselor,  Yukon-Kuskokwim   Health                                                            
Corporation,   testified  via  teleconference   from  Nooksack   Bay                                                            
[possibly Toksook Bay]                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
SFC 01 # 60, Side B                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Mr. John continued speaking  in support for funding alcohol and drug                                                            
abuse  treatment  services.  He  spoke  to the  importance  of  this                                                            
treatment especially as it relates to domestic violence.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
AT EASE 1:00 PM / 2:30 PM                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Senator Ward,  Vice-Chair of the Senate  Finance Committee,  chaired                                                            
the following  portion of the meeting. He announced  testimony would                                                            
be limited to two minutes.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
JAMES SEEGER, Student,  University of Alaska-Anchorage, Kachemak Bay                                                            
Campus,  testified  via  teleconference   from  Homer,  about  media                                                            
reports stating  Alaska is losing its highly skilled  workers to the                                                            
Lower 48. He stated that  failing to fund the University's requested                                                            
$16.9 million  increase the Legislature  is saying it is  acceptable                                                            
to loose this  workforce and also  encourages students to  leave the                                                            
state  earlier  because,  "education  is  a  luxury  Alaska  can  do                                                            
without."                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
MERRITT  MITCHELL,  Alumni,  University  of  Alaska-Anchorage,   and                                                            
representing,  Kachemak Bay Campus Advisory Council,  and President,                                                            
University  of Alaska-Fairbanks  Alumni Association,  testified  via                                                            
teleconference  from Homer in support  for fully funding  the amount                                                            
requested for the University.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
DAVE  JONES,  Director  of Finance,  Kodiak  Island  Borough  School                                                            
District,  testified  via  teleconference   from  Kodiak  about  the                                                            
efforts  school districts  made to  address the  high cost of  pupil                                                            
transportation.  He stated  these  efforts were  successful and  the                                                            
resulting  contracts reflect  the true market  cost of transporting                                                             
students  in Alaska. He  commended the Committee  for fully  funding                                                            
this increment. He cautioned  that failing to fully fund this in the                                                            
future would  result in a budget reduction  for the school  district                                                            
and the students in Kodiak would "bear the burden".                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
PATRICK  HICKEY,   Assistant  Superintendent   for  Operations   and                                                            
Business  Management,   Kenai  Peninsula  Borough  School   District                                                            
testified via  teleconference from Kenai that the  District's budget                                                            
in 1995 was over  $73 million compared to the same  amount in FY 02,                                                            
seven years  later. He noted the rising  cost of fuel and  labor and                                                            
health care expenditures.  He requested the Committee  support other                                                            
legislation  that would  increase the education  foundation  funding                                                            
formula. He  also asked that the pupil  transportation component  be                                                            
fully funded.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
PAULA   BLACHUT,    12-year   Alaskan   resident,   testified    via                                                            
teleconference  from Valdez about her concerns over  proposed budget                                                            
cuts that would  affect the Valdez  Counseling Center. She  stressed                                                            
this center is the only  facility offering substance abuse treatment                                                            
services in the community as well as outlying areas.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
JOE MICHAUD,  Valdez Regional Correctional  Facility, testified  via                                                            
teleconference  from Valdez  about the difficulty  in operating  the                                                            
facility  given that  there  has been  little funding  increase  for                                                            
several years.  He described the services  the facility provides  to                                                            
the region.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
PEGGY  FLASCHER, Director,  Valdez  Counseling  Center, and  19-year                                                            
Alaska resident, testified  via teleconference from Valdez on behalf                                                            
of  the staff  of the  Valdez  Counseling  Center to  request  fully                                                            
funding the  rural community  health centers.  She noted the  Center                                                            
currently does  not have funding to offer substance  abuse treatment                                                            
services for youth and she detailed the need for this service.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
GREG DONEWAR, Dillingham  Department of Public Safety, testified via                                                            
teleconference  from  Dillingham  to request  funding  for  regional                                                            
contract jails.  He spoke of the services  these facilities  provide                                                            
and their  necessity. He  referenced a report  from the Division  of                                                            
Legislative  Budget  and Audit,  citing  "community  jails are  over                                                            
crowded and under-maintained  especially at Kodiak,  the North Slope                                                            
Borough, Kotzebue  and Dillingham.  These sites need to be  replaced                                                            
or expanded."                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
NELS ANDERSON, JR., Member,  University of Alaska-Fairbanks, Bristol                                                            
Bay Campus Council, testified  via teleconference from Dillingham to                                                            
request the Committee fully  fund a request for $18.4 million for FY                                                            
02.  He spoke  to  the  recent  fishing  disasters  in the  area  in                                                            
addition  to welfare reform,  which is placing  more demands  on the                                                            
Bristol Bay Campus to retrain fishers for other jobs.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
JOHN FULTON, testified  via teleconference from Dillingham about the                                                            
importance of  the University of Alaska and the Bristol  Bay Campus.                                                            
He spoke of the  economic opportunity the campuses  provide to rural                                                            
communities.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHRISTY  WILLER  TILDEN,  Program  Director  for  Alcohol  Services,                                                            
Bristol Bay Native Health  Corporation, testified via teleconference                                                            
from Dillingham  about the  importance of  funding the services  the                                                            
Corporation   offers.  She   suggested  that   because  of   funding                                                            
reductions,  the Legislature  does not believe  there is an  alcohol                                                            
problem in the state.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
APRIL  GHALAMI,  Student   Representative,  University   of  Alaska-                                                            
Fairbanks,  Bristol Bay  Campus, testified  via teleconference  from                                                            
Dillingham  that she is a wife, a  mother, a sister, a daughter,  an                                                            
employee, a board member,  a council member, a teacher, a counselor,                                                            
a mentor and a student  at the University of Alaska. She stated that                                                            
although it  may seem Alaska's greatest  resources are oil,  timber,                                                            
fishing or mining, the state's greatest resource is people.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
JILL  SIMPSON,  Cordova   Family  Resource  Center,   testified  via                                                            
teleconference  from Cordova  to request funding  for public  health                                                            
services not  be reduced. She warned  that if funding were  cut, the                                                            
Center would be unable to continue operations.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
MIKE MILLIGAN  testified via teleconference  from Kodiak  to ask the                                                            
Legislature  to increase fuel taxes.  He spoke of opportunities  for                                                            
the state  with the appointment  of US Representative  Don  Young as                                                            
Chair of the House Transportation  Committee. He commented about the                                                            
high price of gasoline  in Alaska, stating it should be lower, given                                                            
that it originates in the  state. He did not want the Permanent Fund                                                            
Dividend payments  reduced and preferred a flat "small"  income tax.                                                            
                                                                                                                                
FRED  NISHIMURA,   Business   Manager,  Aleknagik   Natives,   Ltd.,                                                            
testified via teleconference  from Dillingham on behalf of the Board                                                            
of Directors  and  the shareholders,  in support  of the  Governor's                                                            
request for funding  an additional Park Service Ranger  and aircraft                                                            
support  for a  state park  in  the region.  He spoke  of  increased                                                            
hunting and fishing activities in the park                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
CHRISTINA  SASALY  testified  via  teleconference   from  Dillingham                                                            
testified  against   proposed  budget  cuts  to  drug   and  alcohol                                                            
treatment services  in Rural Alaska.  She emphasized the  importance                                                            
of these services to the  health of rural communities. She testified                                                            
in favor of  funding for the University,  stressing the educational                                                             
opportunities offered at  the Bristol Bay Campus are critical to the                                                            
economic future of Dillingham.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
AT EASE                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
DIANE MCBRIDE,  Program Director,  KBBI Public Radio, testified  via                                                            
teleconference  from Homer that this radio station  has consolidated                                                            
with the public  radio station in Kenai to operate  more efficiently                                                            
and cost-effectively.  She stated this was to allow  the stations to                                                            
maintain the  same level of service  to the listening audience.  She                                                            
told of the ability for  local residents to communicate with members                                                            
of the Legislature  over the telephone rather then  traveling to the                                                            
Legislative Information  Office during forums. She requested funding                                                            
for the University of Alaska is not reduced.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CINDY  QUIJADA,  President,   Student  Association,   University  of                                                            
Alaska-Anchorage, Kachemak  Bay Campus, testified via teleconference                                                            
from  Homer in  support  of full  funding  for the  University.  She                                                            
shared that the University  has changed her life and has allowed her                                                            
to become a productive member of the community.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
AT EASE 3:30 PM / 4:00 PM                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
[Note: Recording  equipment remained in operation  during the break.                                                            
No portion of the meeting is omitted.]                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
SFC 01 # 61, Side A                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
JOHN  DICKENS,   Emergency  Medical   Services  Instructor,   Yukon-                                                            
Kuskokwim   Health  Corporation,   and  Volunteer  Firefighter   and                                                            
Emergency  Medical  Technician,  City  of  Bethel  Fire Department,                                                             
[additional  credentials  inaudible]  testified  via teleconference                                                             
from Bethel  to ask the  Committee to reconsider  reductions  to the                                                            
BRU grants for  public health care providers. He warned  that making                                                            
such  budget  reductions  would  "literally  be  measured  in  large                                                            
amounts of blood and tears."                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Donley  pointed out that BRU is a "generic  term" that does                                                            
not refer to  any one grant. He asked  what program the witness  was                                                            
referring to in his testimony.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Dickens replied, "emergency  medical services program," which he                                                            
said is only funded at 75 percent.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Donley asked the name of the recipient of this grant.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Mr.  Dickens answered  the  grantee  is the  Yukon-Kuskokwim  Health                                                            
Corporation.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Donley  stated that  this  grant  was not  eliminated  but                                                            
instead combined  with other  public health  providers into  one BRU                                                            
that would  be competitive.  He asked  why the  witness thought  his                                                            
organization  would not win  this grant given  his testimony  on the                                                            
importance of the funds.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Dickens responded that  the needs are great everywhere in Alaska                                                            
and that "we're gonna lose either way."                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Donley and Mr. Dickens continued to debate the issue.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
CAROLINE RENNER,  Director, Yukon-Kuskokwim Health  Corporation, and                                                            
Chair, Alaska Tobacco Control  Alliance, and the Statewide Coalition                                                            
of  Public  Health  Advocates,  testified  via  teleconference  from                                                            
Bethel  referencing   tobacco  usage   data  she  provided   to  the                                                            
Committee.  She informed  that  she would  be visiting  the  Capitol                                                            
Building and planned to meet with the members.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
MARY  ANARUTH, Administration   Coordinate,  Yukon-Kuskokwim  Health                                                            
Corporation,  testified via teleconference  from Bethel against  the                                                            
proposal  to combine  the  public health  services  grants into  one                                                            
competitive grant process.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
SANDRA MIRONOV,  Yukon-Kuskokwim Health  Corporation, testified  via                                                            
teleconference from Bethel  about possible funding reductions to the                                                            
public  health care  providers.  She gave  a history  of the  Health                                                            
Corporation   and  the  services   it  provides.   She  stated   the                                                            
competitive  grant  process  would  place  rural  communities  at  a                                                            
disadvantage.  She spoke of the valuable time that  would have to be                                                            
spent on grant writing activities.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
ALEX MORTENSON  testified via teleconference  from Bethel  on behalf                                                            
of the  University of  Alaska FY  02 operating  budget. She  told of                                                            
biology  courses   she  took  and  the  benefits  of  long-distance                                                             
education technology.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
STEVEN  [last  name  inaudible  and  not  provided],  testified  via                                                            
teleconference   from  Bethel  about   the  Yukon-Kuskokwim   Health                                                            
Corporation   and  the  Alaska  Psychiatric   Institute   [testimony                                                            
inaudible.]                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
GERENE SUMPTER,  Life-long  Bethel resident,  30-year University  of                                                            
Alaska-Fairbanks, Kuskokwim  Campus employee, and part-time student,                                                            
testified via  teleconference from Bethel to ask that  the Committee                                                            
support  President Hamilton's  request for  University funding.  She                                                            
thanked  the Committee for  supporting the  University the  previous                                                            
year.  She stated  the local campus  is "producing  local  homegrown                                                            
teachers" and  graduates of programs  such as rural development  who                                                            
work to bring sustainable development to communities.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
CARRIE ENOCH testified  via teleconference from Bethel regarding the                                                            
Yukon-Kuskokwim Health Corporation [testimony inaudible].                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
PAULA  ALBERT, Alaskan  Native,  testified via  teleconference  from                                                            
Bethel that  tobacco settlement  funds should  be spent on  tobacco-                                                            
related programs.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
JACK CROW, Village Operations  Administrator, Yukon-Kuskokwim Health                                                            
Corporation,  testified  via teleconference  from  Bethel about  the                                                            
community  health  aid  programs  and  emergency   medical  services                                                            
offered by the Corporation.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
DANA  LEE HULL,  Director,  Community  Health and  Wellness,  Yukon-                                                            
Kuskokwim  Health Corporation,  testified  via  teleconference  from                                                            
Bethel to ask  the Committee to reconsider changing  the grants to a                                                            
competitive  process. She spoke about  the importance of  prevention                                                            
and  the high  death  rates of  Alaska  Natives and  other  children                                                            
living in rural environments.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
SANDRA KLEVER,  Yukon-Kuskokwim  Health Corporation,  testified  via                                                            
teleconference  from  Bethel  that  over  the  past  20  years,  the                                                            
Corporation  has "carefully  nurtured  the growth  of village-based                                                             
counselors."  She stated there are  now 30 counselors who  serve the                                                            
54 villages in the Yukon-Kuskokwim  Delta. She detailed the services                                                            
these counselors provide and the impacts of budget reductions.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
VICKIE  GREEN,   Emergency  Medical   Services  Department,   Yukon-                                                            
Kuskokwim  Health Corporation,  testified  via  teleconference  from                                                            
Bethel  about the  services the  Department provides  to Bethel  and                                                            
outlying villages. She spoke about training activities.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
BALASSA  LARSON, Supervisor,  Health Aide  Program, Yukon-Kuskokwim                                                             
Health Corporation,  testified via  teleconference from Bethel  that                                                            
this program  provides primary health  care and that she  supervises                                                            
health care  for six villages.  She warned  of the difficulties  she                                                            
would have in conducting her duties if funding were reduced.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CAROL ODINZOFF,  Registered  Nurse, Director,  Health Aide  Program,                                                            
Yukon-Kuskokwim  Health  Corporation,  and Chair,  Community  Health                                                            
Aide Directors Statewide  Organization, testified via teleconference                                                            
from Bethel  and reiterated  the  services the  Health Aide  Program                                                            
provides. She  spoke of the two positions  that would be  eliminated                                                            
if funding  were reduced.  She stated  the program  is currently  25                                                            
percent under funded.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
CURT  MADISON,   Director,  Emergency   Medical  Services   Training                                                            
Program,   Yukon-Kuskokwim   Health   Corporation,   testified   via                                                            
teleconference   from  Bethel  that  the  limited   funds  that  are                                                            
available  should be leveraged  to achieve  the maximum benefit.  He                                                            
stated  that the  Corporation cooperates  with  providers in  Norton                                                            
Sound  and other  areas,  but  does not  compete  with  them as  the                                                            
proposed grant process would require.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
CHRIS  BRAGG,  Yukon-Kuskokwim  Health  Corporation,  testified  via                                                            
teleconference  from Bethel  about the consequences  of not  funding                                                            
alcohol  and drug  abuse treatment  services.  She  stated that  the                                                            
grants  should not  be  awarded on  a competitive  basis  for  rural                                                            
communities.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
AT EASE                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
SFC 01 # 61, Side B                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Bragg continued.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
ISHMAEL ANDREW,  Student, University of Alaska-Fairbanks,  Kuskokwim                                                            
Campus testified via teleconference  from Bethel that the University                                                            
has enabled him  to continue his education so that  he could someday                                                            
return to his village as a teacher.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
JANET BAVILLA,  Student, University  of Alaska-Fairbanks,  Kuskokwim                                                            
Campus,  testified  via teleconference  from  Bethel  in support  of                                                            
funding  for  the  University.  She talked  about  the  benefits  of                                                            
attending a rural school.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
ROSE MARIA  ASHEPAK testified  via teleconference  from Bethel  that                                                            
she  is a  consumer of  Yukon-Kuskokwim  Health  Corporation  mental                                                            
health care services.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
RAY  [last  name  inaudible]   testified  via  teleconference   from                                                            
Glennallen  to request  funding  be withheld  from  the Division  of                                                            
Forestry. He stated the  community operates a "hot shot" service and                                                            
the state program competes with their efforts.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
MIKE  BRICKER,  recovering  alcoholic   and  addict,  testified  via                                                            
teleconference  from Bethel,  as a  past consumer  of mental  health                                                            
care  services  in the  Lower  48.  Currently,  he informed,  he  is                                                            
involved with  behavioral sciences. He contradicted  other testimony                                                            
and requested  funding  reductions  for the treatment  services.  He                                                            
asserted   that  reduced   alcohol  consumption   would  result   in                                                            
significant savings  to all programs. He stated that  Alaska Natives                                                            
would  not suffer  from  budget reductions.  He  said  he read  this                                                            
testimony "tongue in cheek."                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
HARRY  NICKOLI testified  via teleconference  from  Bethel that  the                                                            
Bethel  Crisis Respite  Center  and the  Bethel Mental  Health  Care                                                            
Center saved his life.  He told of his depression and alcohol abuse,                                                            
which he stated  he is improving.  He said that his self-esteem  has                                                            
improved since receiving dental care.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
WALTER  [Last name  inaudible],  Marine  Advisory Agent,  School  of                                                            
Fisheries  and  Ocean  Sciences,  University  of  Alaska-Fairbanks,                                                             
Kuskokwim Campus  testified via teleconference from  Bethel that the                                                            
University  provides economic  benefits to  the state. He  requested                                                            
full funding for the University.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Senator Ward noted Senator Elton was in attendance.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
MAX FELIX,  Director, National Council  on Alcoholism, testified  in                                                            
Juneau about the non-profit  agency with 250 chapters nationwide. He                                                            
requested   funding   for  substance   abuse   treatment   services,                                                            
especially prevention programs.  He stated previous high spending on                                                            
prevention and  treatment during the 1980s has "paid  off." However,                                                            
he noted that  "we're losing the battle"  due to reduced  funding in                                                            
recent years.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
TOM BOUTIN,  28-year Juneau resident,  testified in Juneau  to point                                                            
out that the state  would be in "bad shape" if fiscal  restraint had                                                            
not been exercised over the past several years.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
BILL LEGERE, KTOO  Public Broadcasting, testified  in Juneau that he                                                            
appreciated the Committee's  funding of public broadcasting stations                                                            
grants. He  spoke to the  increased cost  of the upcoming  satellite                                                            
transfer and the  funds allocated for FY 02 would  only provide half                                                            
the amount necessary to  operate the new system. He listed emergency                                                            
transmitting  and Gavel-to-Gavel   among the  broadcasting  services                                                            
utilizing the satellite system.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Donley  noted the proposed budget included  program receipt                                                            
authority sufficient to cover the satellite expenses.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
JOAN CAHILL,  20-year Juneau  resident, testified  in Juneau  to the                                                            
proposed  $1.2 million  allocation of  a total  $25 million  tobacco                                                            
settlement  funds to tobacco-related  programs. She stated  that the                                                            
Center for  Disease Control has suggested  that the $8.1  million is                                                            
the minimum amount  necessary to be effective for  smoking cessation                                                            
and prevention in Alaska.  She asserted, "There is something immoral                                                            
going on  here," that  the tobacco  companies are  "laughing  at our                                                            
expense all the  way to the bank," and "we are pawns  of the tobacco                                                            
company".                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
ALICE RARIG,  Juneau Area State Parks  Advisory Board, testified  in                                                            
Juneau in support  of fully funding the requested  increment for the                                                            
Division of Parks. She  said this funding would enable employment of                                                            
summer staff for  maintenance efforts. She told of  the condition of                                                            
many parks due to inadequate funding in recent years.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
JIM  DOUGLAS,  Extension  Agent,  4-H  Southeast  Alaska,  Extension                                                            
Agent, 4-H  Kodiak, Extension  Agent, Home  Gardening and  Community                                                            
Resource Development for  the area from Angoon to Cordova, and State                                                            
4-H  Program   Leader  on  the  Administrative   Team,  Cooperative                                                             
Extension  Service,  University of  Alaska-Fairbanks,  testified  in                                                            
Juneau to request fully  funding the University of Alaska budget. He                                                            
stated  that the  expansion of  his duties  occurred  over the  past                                                            
three years  with the "gutting" of  the University budget.  He noted                                                            
that  with the  loss  of senior  staff,  the  Cooperative  Extension                                                            
Service lost over 150 years of knowledge.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
IRIS  CORTES, Staff  and Student,  University  of Alaska-Southeast,                                                             
testified in Juneau that  one reason she moved to Juneau was because                                                            
of the presence  of a small university.  She supported full  funding                                                            
for the University of Alaska.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
TIA  ANDERSON,  Student   Body  President,  University   of  Alaska-                                                            
Southeast,  testified in Juneau to  ask those members of  the public                                                            
present  at the  meeting  how  are in  support  of funding  for  the                                                            
University to stand. She  remarked that the University of Alaska is,                                                            
"a child of the state."  She stated that with the position of Career                                                            
Counselor  vacant, she has  been unable to  receive assistance  with                                                            
finding employment within the state after she graduates.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Donley  noted  the  Department   of  Labor  and  Workforce                                                            
Development operates  an employment service, which  could assist the                                                            
witness in her job-seeking efforts.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
MCKENZIE MATAYA, Student,  University of Alaska-Southeast, testified                                                            
in Juneau that  full funding of the  University would be  beneficial                                                            
to the school  and the economy of  Juneau. She stated that  she came                                                            
to the  University  from out  of state  and  would love  to stay  in                                                            
Alaska after graduating.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
MARK GRAVES, Student,  University of Alaska, and life-long  Alaskan,                                                            
testified in Juneau that  he has an interest in the state's economy.                                                            
He urged full  support of the University of Alaska  budget increase,                                                            
which would benefit the  entire state. "I'm asking you to invest now                                                            
for a better tomorrow."                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
JOE HOLSTEIN,  Student and Employee, University of  Alaska-Southeast                                                            
testified  in  Juneau  that  he  fully  supports  the  University's                                                             
programs.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
BRAD DUNCAN,  Student and Employee,  University of Alaska-Southeast                                                             
testified  in Juneau about  his involvement  in the University's  IT                                                            
Knowledge Worker  Program, which was  funded by the Legislature.  He                                                            
noted  that when  he enrolled  in  this program,  he had  to sign  a                                                            
contract promising to stay  in Alaska for two years after graduating                                                            
and  obtain  employment  in the  information  technology  field.  He                                                            
stated that with additional  funds, more programs like this could be                                                            
implemented.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
PAM WATTS,  Executive  Director, Advisory  Board  on Alcoholism  and                                                            
Drug Abuse, testified  in Juneau to request funding  of the Division                                                            
of Alcoholism  and  Drug Abuse.  She reiterated  testimony  received                                                            
throughout the  day regarding the consequences budget  reductions to                                                            
alcohol and drug abuse treatment services would cause.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
SHANNON KEMPTON, Student,  University of Alaska, testified in Juneau                                                            
that  the University  is  important  to  her  and that  funding  the                                                            
University is "an investment in our future."                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
STACEY AUGHE,  Student, University  of Alaska,  testified in  Juneau                                                            
that she supports fully funding the University.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MATTHEW WOOD, Student,  University of Alaska-Southeast, testified in                                                            
Juneau  that he  is originally  from Oregon.  He stated  he came  to                                                            
Alaska because the University  of Alaska offers small classrooms and                                                            
an  intensive accounting  program.  He  cautioned that  without  the                                                            
requested funding,  the library project  could not be completed.  He                                                            
spoke of attending classrooms in temporary buildings.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
RYAN  [OR BRIAN]  GREEN,  Full-Time  Honor  Student,  University  of                                                            
Alaska-Southeast   testified  in   Juneau  that  funding   increases                                                            
appropriated  the previous  year were used  to recruit out  of state                                                            
students. He said he is  one of those as he originates from Utah and                                                            
that  he  chose  the   University  of  Alaska  over  Brigham   Young                                                            
University primarily because of class size.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
PHIL  LINDEKEY  [Last name  not  provided],  Student  and  Employee,                                                            
University  of  Alaska-Southeast   testified  in  Juneau  about  his                                                            
studies in  the technology field.  He said there are many  "awesome"                                                            
programs planned but not  yet implemented due to lack of funding. He                                                            
asked the Committee to  fully fund the University of Alaska request.                                                            
                                                                                                                                
TYLER  BISHOP testified  in Juneau  that he  came to  the state  two                                                            
years  ago   on  a  scholarship  from   the  University   of  Alaska                                                            
Foundation.  He  asserted  the  Committee   should  fully  fund  the                                                            
University,  as it is the "economic  engine behind Alaska."  He said                                                            
that by funding  the University, the  Legislature is funding  health                                                            
care, industry and technology.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
KATHRYN CURRIT, Sophomore,  University of Alaska-Southeast testified                                                            
in Juneau  that she  "really really  really" believes  in the  $16.9                                                            
million  budget   increase  for  the  University.   She  stated  the                                                            
increased  funding would  help the University  better its  programs.                                                            
She noted a Mental Health Counselor is needed.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
KATHLEEN  MOORE testified  in Juneau  that she was  a University  of                                                            
Alaska-Southeast student the previous semester and would be again                                                               
in the next semester. She stated she is in fully support of funding                                                             
for the University.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
SFC 01 # 62, Side A                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                

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