Legislature(2001 - 2002)

04/26/2001 03:28 PM 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."                                                                      
and                                                                                                                             
     SCS CSHB 103(FIN)(BRF SUP MAJ FLD S)                                                                                       
     "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."                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     SCS CSHB 104(FIN)(BRF SUP MAJ FLD S)                                                                                       
     "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."                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
        Department of Education and Early Development                                                                           
        Open Item 14                                                                                                          
        Department of Environmental Conservation                                                                                
        Held                                                                                                                    
        Department of Health and Social Services                                                                                
        Open Items: 2, 5, 44, 55                                                                                                
        Military and Veterans Affairs                                                                                           
        Closed                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
     HB 103 and HB 104 were HELD in Committee for further                                                                       
     consideration.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
[Meeting  tapes  and  motion  sheets  are  available  through  the                                                              
Legislative Library, 465-3808.]                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Senator Donley  MOVED to ADOPT  the proposed  conference committee                                                              
amounts for items 1 - 10  in the Department of Education and Early                                                              
Development (see motion sheets).                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Representative Davies asked that item  7 be held open. There being                                                              
NO OBJECTION, it was so ordered.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
There being NO OBJECTION, items 1  - 10 with the exception of item                                                              
7 were adopted.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Davies asked  if the  funds in  item 7  were being                                                              
transferred  into  the  Childcare  Assistance  grant  line.  Chair                                                              
Mulder  explained that  the House  structure was  titled Childcare                                                              
Quality Imitative and the Senate proponent was not.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
DAVID TEAL, DIRECTOR, LEGISLATIVE  FINANCE DIVISION clarified that                                                              
the existing  title would be kept. Representative  Davies WITHDREW                                                              
his OBJECTION.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
There being NO OBJECTION, item 7 was adopted.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Senator Donley  MOVED to ADOPT  the proposed  conference committee                                                              
amounts  for the  Department  of Education  and Early  Development                                                              
items 11  - 16 (see motion  sheets).  Representative  Davies asked                                                              
that item  13 be held  open. There being  NO OBJECTION, it  was so                                                              
ordered.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
There being  NO OBJECTION,  items 11  - 16  with the  exception of                                                              
item 13 were adopted.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Representative Davies  spoke in support  of the Senate  number for                                                              
item 13: Alaska State Council on  the Arts. He noted that it was a                                                              
relatively  small amount.  The  Senate number  would increase  the                                                              
grant by 2 percent.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Senator Donley noted  that the motion before the  Committee was to                                                              
adopt the House. Senator Hoffman  noted that the funds would allow                                                              
a federal match.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
KAREN REHFELD,  DIRECTOR, DIVISION OF EDUCATION  SUPPORT SERVICES,                                                              
DEPARTMENT OF  EDUCATION AND EARLY DEVELOPMENT  clarified that the                                                              
state funds would provide a federal match at a 1:1 ration.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
A  roll call  vote was  taken  on the  motion to  adopt the  House                                                              
numbers for item 13.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
IN FAVOR: Senate: Kelly, Donley                                                                                                 
          House:  Mulder, Williams                                                                                              
OPPOSED: Senate: Hoffman                                                                                                        
          House:  Davies                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
The MOTION PASSED.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Senator Donley MOVED to ADOPT  item 17: Senate Intent Language for                                                              
the  Department of  Education  and Early  Development (see  motion                                                              
sheets).                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Ms.  Rehfeld noted  that  the  department did  not  object to  the                                                              
intent language. The department  is working on revising the income                                                              
eligibility  scale for  childcare  assistance  and implementing  a                                                              
market rate  survey. The Senate  intention would be to  keep these                                                              
changes from driving up the cost.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Department of Education and Early  Development was closed with the                                                              
exception of item 14.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Senator Donley  MOVED to ADOPT  the proposed  conference committee                                                              
amounts for the Military and  Veterans Affair (see motion sheets).                                                              
There being NO OBJECTION, it was so ordered.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Senator Donley  MOVED to ADOPT  the proposed  conference committee                                                              
amounts for the  Department of Health and Social  Services items 1                                                              
- 15 (see motion sheets).                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Senator Hoffman  asked that  item 6 be  held open. There  being NO                                                              
OBJECTION, it was so ordered.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Davies asked  that items  4 and  8 be  held. There                                                              
being NO OBJECTION, it was so ordered.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
There being  NO OBJECTION, items  1, 2, 3, 5,  7, and 9 -  15 were                                                              
adopted.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Davies   spoke  to   item  4:   Public  Assistance                                                              
Administration. He maintained that  the Senate number would result                                                              
in  a  $100 thousand  dollars  reduction  to  the base  of  public                                                              
assistance. Chair  Mulder replied that funding was  shifted to the                                                              
foundation formula.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Senator Hoffman  noted that  it would be  a $100  thousand dollars                                                              
general fund reduction, which  would have a disproportional affect                                                              
on the  Adult Public Assistance  Program that benefits  the blind,                                                              
elderly and disabled.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Senator Donley noted that it would be a 1.5 percent reduction.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
A  roll call  vote was  taken  on the  motion to  adopt the  House                                                              
numbers for item 4.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
IN FAVOR: Senate: Kelly, Donley                                                                                                 
          House:  Mulder, Williams                                                                                              
OPPOSED: Senate: Hoffman                                                                                                        
          House:  Davies                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
The MOTION PASSED.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Senator  Hoffman   spoke  to  item  6:  Family   Preservation.  He                                                              
recommended that the item remain open.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Chair  Mulder noted  that there  are  no dollars  attached to  the                                                              
shift. The  Senate approach  would consolidate health  grants into                                                              
one  BRU.  He  stated  that  it was  not  his  intention  that  by                                                              
consolidation that the rural  communities see any decrement in the                                                              
funding going  to rural  health programs. The  intent is  to allow                                                              
competition  for  the  provision   of  services.  Senator  Hoffman                                                              
pointed  out that  the corporations  provide the  services  on the                                                              
behalf of the state of Alaska at a cheaper rate.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Senator  Donley stressed  that  the goal  is  to improve  services                                                              
through competition.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Representative Williams questioned the length of the grants.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
JERRY BURNETT, STAFF, SENATOR GREEN  thought that the grants would                                                              
be on an annual basis.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
JANET  CLARKE,  DIRECTOR,  DIVISION  OF  ADMINISTRATIVE  SERVICES,                                                              
DEPARTMENT  OF  HEALTH  AND  SOCIAL SERVICES  explained  that  the                                                              
grants are  issued on  a two-year basis.  Chair Williams  asked if                                                              
the grants  could be  increased to three  years. Ms.  Clark stated                                                              
that  it would  be possible  to  increase the  grant time  through                                                              
regulation.  She noted  that the  RFP's have  been issued  for the                                                              
next fiscal year.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Representative Davies expressed concern  that the process has been                                                              
begun  and that the  department may  need time  to phase  into the                                                              
structure.  Chair  Mulder  suggested  that his  concern  could  be                                                              
incorporated into a letter of intent.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Senator Hoffman noted that other items might be of concern.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
A  roll call  vote was  taken  on the  motion to  adopt the  House                                                              
numbers for item 6.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
IN FAVOR: Senate: Kelly, Donley                                                                                                 
          House:  Mulder, Williams                                                                                              
OPPOSED: Senate: Hoffman                                                                                                        
          House:  Davies                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
The MOTION PASSED.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Representative Davies spoke to item  8: Front Line Social Workers.                                                              
He  stressed   that  the  transcription  services   could  provide                                                              
efficiency of social workers.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Chair Mulder observed that it  is a management decision that could                                                              
be done internally.  He suggested that the  department implement a                                                              
pilot project  to demonstrate  its success.  Representative Davies                                                              
stressed that the workload is  over the national average. He spoke                                                              
in support of transition funding  and maintained that it would not                                                              
be practical to  ask the department to reduce  the number of front                                                              
line  social workers  in order  to divert  funds to  transcription                                                              
services.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Senator Hoffman pointed out that one  day a week would be saved in                                                              
administrative time.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Clark  observed that the  department did a pilot  project with                                                              
$30 thousand dollars for eight  social workers. Each social worker                                                              
saved  a day  of administrative  time. She  stressed the  need for                                                              
additional funds.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Senator Donley maintained  that the department  should shift their                                                              
resources to accommodate the proposal.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
A  roll call  vote was  taken  on the  motion to  adopt the  House                                                              
numbers for item 8.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
IN FAVOR: Senate: Kelly, Donley                                                                                                 
          House:  Mulder, Williams                                                                                              
OPPOSED: Senate: Hoffman                                                                                                        
          House:  Davies                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
The MOTION PASSED.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Senator Donley  MOVED to ADOPT  the proposed  conference committee                                                              
amounts for the Department of  Health and Social Services items 16                                                              
- 28 (see motion sheets).                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Senator  Hoffman  noted  that items  17  -  28  might need  to  be                                                              
reopened since they  relate to the BRU allocation  to rural Alaska                                                              
in item 6.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
There being NO OBJECTION, items 17 - 28 were adopted.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Senator Donley  MOVED to ADOPT  the proposed  conference committee                                                              
amounts for the Department of  Health and Social Services items 29                                                              
- 39  (see motion sheets). Senator  Hoffman noted that  items 29 -                                                              
39  might  need  to be  reopened  since  they  relate to  the  BRU                                                              
allocation to  rural Alaska in  item 6. There being  NO OBJECTION,                                                              
it was so ordered.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Senator Donley  MOVED to ADOPT  the proposed  conference committee                                                              
amounts for the Department of  Health and Social Services items 40                                                              
- 50  (see motion  sheets). Senator Hoffman  noted that  items 40,                                                              
45, and 48 might need to be  reopened since they relate to the BRU                                                              
allocation to rural Alaska in item  6. He OBJECTED to items 44 and                                                              
49.                                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Representative Davies asked that item 43 also be held.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
There being NO  OBJECTION, items 40, 41,  42, 45 - 48  and 50 were                                                              
adopted.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Representative Davies spoke to item  43: State Health Services. He                                                              
thought that the federal receipts were not expected.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Ms.  Clark  explained  that  the  department  expects  to  receive                                                              
federal funds for epidemiological  work to prove that Alaskan fish                                                              
are  healthy.  Chair Mulder  observed  that  the department  could                                                              
request funds from the Legislative  Budget and Audit Committee. He                                                              
stated  that he  would  review the  request  positively when  more                                                              
information is available.  Representative Davies expressed concern                                                              
the time not be lost in assuring that Alaskan fish are safe.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Clark  spoke in support of  approving of the funds  before the                                                              
Committee.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Chair Mulder  MOVED to AMEND the  motion on item 43  by moving the                                                              
Senate number.  There being NO  OBJECTION, the Senate  numbers for                                                              
item 43 was adopted.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Senator  Hoffman  spoke to  item  44: Community  Health  Emergency                                                              
Medical Services. He observed that  there are no new monies in the                                                              
component.  He maintained  that  there was  a  discrepancy on  the                                                              
House  side  of a  $100  thousand  dollars stemming  from  federal                                                              
grants  that were  not in  the proper  column when  the grant  was                                                              
submitted. The Senate did not  accept the restoration. The request                                                              
affects two positions,  which train EMT's throughout  the state of                                                              
Alaska for certification.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
TAPE CHANGE CC103, 01-5, SIDE B                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Item 44 was HELD in Committee for further consideration.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Senator Hoffman spoke to item 49: Alcohol and Drug Abuse Grants.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Discussion occurred regarding item 49 [tape failure].                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Senator Donley maintained  that it was not a reduction  due to the                                                              
addition of federal funds.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Chair Mulder questioned if the  funds went through the department.                                                              
Senator Hoffman  thought that the dollars were  identified but not                                                              
acted  on. He  pointed out  that the  request supports  the infant                                                              
learning program.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Clark clarified that there were no federal funds to replace                                                                 
the state funds. She observed that programs would be cut July 1,                                                                
2001. She stressed that it is a real reduction.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Representative Davies pointed out that the change would be a                                                                    
regression.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
A roll call vote was taken on the motion to adopt the House                                                                     
numbers for item 49.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
IN FAVOR: Senate: Kelly, Donley                                                                                                 
          House:  Mulder, Williams                                                                                              
OPPOSED: Senate: Hoffman                                                                                                        
          House:  Davies                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
The MOTION PASSED.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
HB 103 and HB 104 were heard and HELD in Committee for further                                                                  
consideration.                                                                                                                  

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