Legislature(1993 - 1994)

04/25/1994 04:30 PM JUD

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
txt
  CHAIRMAN ROBIN TAYLOR  called the Judiciary Committee meeting to             
 order at 4:30 p.m.  He introduced  SB 237  (WEAPONS POSSESSION/SALE           
 BY/TO MINORS) as the first order of business and directed attention           
 to a draft Judiciary CS.                                                      
                                                                               
 SENATOR HALFORD moved that CSSB 237(JUD) be adopted.  Hearing no              
 objection, the motion carried.                                                
                                                                               
                                                                               
 SENATOR LOREN LEMAN, prime sponsor of SB 237, said he introduced              
 the legislation after it came to his attention that the Anchorage             
 Police Department could not arrest juveniles who had weapons and              
 were brandishing them until they otherwise used them in some way              
 and broke the law.  SB 237 provides that juveniles have parental              
 permission to have those weapons, with certain exceptions such as             
 marksmanship and hunter safety classes.  The legislation also                 
 contains changes to the procedures regarding juveniles who commit             
 crimes with firearms.                                                         
                                                                               
 Senator Leman said he believes these are important changes to                 
 Alaska's juvenile weapons statutes, and he pointed out that the               
 states of Florida and Utah have recently passed similar                       
 legislation.                                                                  
                                                                               
 Number 050                                                                    
                                                                               
 SENATOR TAYLOR referred to Section 5 which provides that a minor              
 will not be treated as a juveniles if a firearm is used and the               
 minor has been previously adjudicated as a delinquent.  SENATOR               
 LEMAN clarified that would be the automatic waiver to be tried as             
 an adult.                                                                     
                                                                               
 SENATOR DONLEY referred to Section 5, which, he said, parallels SB            
 209, and one of the concerns he had with that legislation was with            
 the language "the minor is alleged to have used a firearm in                  
 commission of the offense."  He asked if this brings into the scope           
 the mere possession of a firearm, and does this move them into                
 adult jurisdiction.  SENATOR LEMAN answered that would not be his             
 intent if the juvenile just had possession of the weapon.   SENATOR           
 TAYLOR suggested the record should clearly reflect that the words             
 "used as a firearm in the commission of the offense" would not                
 encompass the mere possession which is already provided for.                  
                                                                               
 Number 163                                                                    
                                                                               
 SENATOR DONLEY, using the example of juveniles bringing firearms to           
 school,  said the first offense doesn't necessarily result in very            
 serious ramifications, because the juvenile isn't  treated as an              
 adult for the first offense, and he suggested discussion on drawing           
 a harder line warning the juvenile that if he does it again, it               
 will trigger a serious penalty as an adult.  The question should be           
 if the triggering offense include mere status crimes such as                  
 possession of firearms and not utilization of firearms.                       
                                                                               
 Number 280                                                                    
                                                                               
 KATHY TIBBLES, Division of Family & Youth Services, Department of             
 Health & Social Services, stated the division is opposed to                   
 lowering an automatic waiver age down to the age of 14 years for              
 such offenses, because the division believes that at age 14                   
 children still generally are amenable to treatment, and that those            
 who commit offenses of a serious enough nature can still be waived            
 under the current process that is available.                                  
                                                                               
 Ms. Tibbles said the division also has a technical concern with               
 language in the bill that refers to adjudication of delinquency in            
 another jurisdiction.  She pointed out that there is currently no             
 national network that would make that kind of information available           
 to them, so there are a lot of instances where they wouldn't know             
 whether a juvenile has been adjudicated in another state.                     
                                                                               
 Number 310                                                                    
                                                                               
 JUANITA HENSLEY, Division of Motor Vehicles, Department of Public             
 Safety, directed attention to language on page 6 in Section 6,                
 which relates to revoking a driver's license for one year on the              
 first offense of these juveniles.  If an individual is convicted of           
 a drunk driving offense, their license is only going to be revoked            
 for 90 days on the first offense.  If they are driving drunk and              
 they kill someone and they are charged with manslaughter, etc., the           
 court is only required to revoke their license for a period of 30             
 days.  She recommended on line 9 changing the one year to 90 days,            
 and on line 11 changing the two years to one year, which would be             
 consistent with the other areas of statute on license revocation              
 periods.                                                                      
                                                                               
 Number 390                                                                    
                                                                               
 SENATOR TAYLOR moved that on page 6, line 9, change "one year" to             
 "90 days" and on line 11 change "two years" to "one year."  He also           
 modified the amendment on line 8, after the words "license for a              
 period of" to include the words "no less than."  Hearing no                   
 objection, the Chairman stated the amendment was adopted.                     
                                                                               
 Number 415                                                                    
 SENATOR DONLEY said because the amendment reduces the minimum time            
 of suspension, he would like to see the requirement that they pay             
 the $100 fee for reinstatement of their license.   He then proposed           
 the $100 reinstatement fee as a conceptual amendment.  Hearing no             
 objection, the amendment was adopted.                                         
                                                                               
 Number 490                                                                    
                                                                               
 SENATOR HALFORD moved that CSSB 237(JUD) be passed out of committee           
 with individual recommendations.  Hearing no objection, it was                
 ordered.                                                                      

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