Legislature(2021 - 2022)BUTROVICH 205

02/25/2021 03:30 PM STATE AFFAIRS

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* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
+= SB 25 STATE GOV'T FINANCES: WEBSITE TELECONFERENCED
Heard & Held
-- Invited & Public Testimony --
Department of Administration
- Kelly Tshibaka, Commissioner
- Hans Zigman
+= SB 39 BALLOT CUSTODY/TAMPERING; VOTER REG; MAIL TELECONFERENCED
Heard & Held
-- Testimony <Invitation Only><TBA> --
**Streamed live on AKL.tv**
        SB  39-BALLOT CUSTODY/TAMPERING; VOTER REG; MAIL                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
4:27:34 PM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR SHOWER  announced the consideration  of SENATE BILL  NO. 39                                                               
"An Act  relating to elections;  relating to  voter registration;                                                               
relating to ballots  and a system of tracking  and accounting for                                                               
ballots;  establishing an  election offense  hotline; designating                                                               
as a  class A  misdemeanor the collection  of ballots  from other                                                               
voters; designating as  a class C felony  the intentional opening                                                               
or tampering  with a  sealed ballot,  certificate, or  package of                                                               
ballots without  authorization from the director  of the division                                                               
of elections; and providing for an effective date."                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
He  asked the  invited testifiers  to  talk about  what they  saw                                                               
during the previous election cycle.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
4:28:47 PM                                                                                                                    
ELLYN ZETERA, representing self,  Copper Center, Alaska, reported                                                               
that she received two ballots in  the mail in the second or third                                                               
week  of  October   2020.  She  threw  the  first   one  away  in                                                               
aggravation  because she  intended to  vote in  person. A  second                                                               
ballot arrived  a week later and  she threw it away  as well. She                                                               
related  that  she  believed that  all  Alaskans  were  receiving                                                               
ballots by mail  because of the "hard push for  the ballots being                                                               
mailed  in."  Sometime  in  the  second  week  of  December,  she                                                               
received an  apology letter from the  lieutenant governor stating                                                               
that  there "was  an incident  involving  exposure of  personally                                                               
identifiable  information." She  said  she was  given a  one-year                                                               
subscription to Equifax Credit Watch  Gold. Despite the exposure,                                                               
she said  she was  assured that the  election was  legitimate and                                                               
her vote was not affected.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
MS. ZETERA stated that she  questions the entire election because                                                               
she  received two  ballots  by  mail and  then  her identity  was                                                               
stolen.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
4:31:11 PM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR SHOWER  asked if she  understands the difference  between a                                                               
ballot  application   and  a  ballot  because   the  Division  of                                                               
Elections has  said, "in most  cases if  not all, those  were not                                                               
ballots; they were  applications." He asked her to  state for the                                                               
record that  she understands the  difference between  ballots and                                                               
applications.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
MS. ZETERA  replied, "They were  ballots due  to the fact  when I                                                               
opened them, there was nowhere for me  to sign or sign up for it.                                                               
I received  ballots that had the  circles to fill out  as well as                                                               
the names of individuals I was able to vote for."                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SHOWER  asked her to confirm  that she did not  request the                                                               
ballots.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
MS. ZETERA replied, "No, I did not request them."                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SHOWER asked if she voted in person.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
MS. ZETERA answered yes.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SHOWER restated,  "You got ballots you did  not request and                                                               
you also  received a letter from  the state saying your  data was                                                               
compromised. Is that all true?"                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MS. ZETERA answered yes.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SHOWER found  no questions and recognized  the next invited                                                               
testifier.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
4:32:57 PM                                                                                                                    
ARNIE OYDNA,  representing self,  Juneau, Alaska, stated  that he                                                               
also  received  an unsolicited  ballot.  He  added, "I  know  the                                                               
difference between application and a ballot. This was a ballot."                                                                
                                                                                                                                
4:33:48 PM                                                                                                                    
KENNY SKAFLESTAD  representing self, Hoonah, Alaska,  related his                                                               
experience of  encountering someone on  the street in  Hoonah who                                                               
was carrying  a briefcase  with printed  ballots and  offering to                                                               
help  people complete  their ballots.  The next  day he  received                                                               
three phone calls from neighbors  who had people carrying ballots                                                               
come to  their doors.  He said the  experience was  upsetting for                                                               
some of these people.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  SHOWER  asked if  he  reported  this  to the  Division  of                                                               
Elections or law enforcement.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
MR. SKAFLESTAD said no.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SHOWER asked  if he would be willing to  contact his office                                                               
after the  meeting to discuss  forwarding the information  to law                                                               
enforcement.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. SKAFLESTAD agreed to do so.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
4:36:45 PM                                                                                                                    
BRIAN ENDLE,  representing self,  Palmer, Alaska, stated  that he                                                               
has  dealt  with  election  integrity  over  the  last  year.  He                                                               
provided  his credentials  and described  himself  as a  computer                                                               
programmer.  He  related that  the  election  integrity group  he                                                               
works with  made a  presentation to the  governor and  another to                                                               
the  lieutenant  governor.  The latter  presentation  is  on  the                                                               
Alaska Republican  Assembly website alaskara.com and  it made the                                                               
point  that  "It  is  impossible to  guarantee  the  validity  or                                                               
integrity  of an  election with  electronic voting  machines. The                                                               
only way  to ensure a  valid election  is with paper  ballots and                                                               
with  hand counting  election results  upon  request from  either                                                               
party."  He  said  he  demonstrated   with  YouTube  videos  that                                                               
electronic  voting machines  can be  manipulated. "We  showed the                                                               
actual  voting machine  that's used  in the  Mat-Su Valley  being                                                               
hacked," he said.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
He offered the following suggestions:  use paper ballots, get rid                                                               
of  electronic voting  machines, reregister  every year,  require                                                               
voter ID, have strict rules  for absentee voting, require showing                                                               
ID in person, no mail-in  ballots, no ballot harvesting, forensic                                                               
audit  of  2020  voting  machines, comprehensive  audit  of  2020                                                               
Alaska  votes   -  particularly  absentee  ballots,   and  ballot                                                               
counting at the  precinct level. He noted that he  sent the chair                                                               
a complete version of his suggestions.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SHOWER advised that the bill  was not focused on the voting                                                               
machines.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
4:40:34 PM                                                                                                                    
TERRI LYONS, representing self,  Wasilla, Alaska, stated that she                                                               
and her  deceased husband  received ballots  for the  primary and                                                               
general  election.  She  threw  the ballots  away  and  voted  in                                                               
person. She related  that she followed the  chair's suggestion to                                                               
go to the elections office to  find out whether her vote counted,                                                               
but the Wasilla  office was closed due to COVID-19.  She tried to                                                               
call the Anchorage office multiple  times but was unable to speak                                                               
to  anyone. She  does  not know  if either  she  or her  deceased                                                               
husband were  shown as having  voted. "I think this  voting fraud                                                               
is out  of hand  and we need  to get  a handle on  it and  get it                                                               
stopped."                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  SHOWER asked  for confirmation  that she  received ballots                                                               
that  she did  not  request and  she  understands the  difference                                                               
between a ballot and an application.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MS. LYONS answered that is true.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  SHOWER asked  if  she  received a  letter  from the  state                                                               
saying her data was compromised.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
MS. LYONS replied she did not get a letter.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
4:42:38 PM                                                                                                                    
VIOLA AMBERG,  representing self, Copper Center,  Alaska, related                                                               
her  experience taking  her elderly,  wheelchair bound  father to                                                               
the local library  to vote. Because he was unable  to go into the                                                               
building, she took his ID inside  and asked if an election worker                                                               
could go  to the  car and  witness his  vote. An  election worker                                                               
said that her father did not  need to have his vote witnessed and                                                               
it was  not necessary to  show his ID. She  took a ballot  out to                                                               
the car and  helped her father fill it out  but questioned how it                                                               
could be legal.  "There was just no quality control  at all," she                                                               
said.                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
4:45:03 PM                                                                                                                    
SUSI SEIBERT, representing self,  Trapper Creek, Alaska, reported                                                               
that she received two ballot  applications about a week apart and                                                               
burned both. About two weeks  after that she received two ballots                                                               
in the  mail and she  burned those as  well. She early  voted and                                                               
then went on holiday for about  six weeks. When she returned, she                                                               
had a  letter "stating that my  vote might have been  breached or                                                               
compromised." She  tried to look  online to see whether  her vote                                                               
counted, but  she was unsuccessful  navigating the system.  "So I                                                               
don't know if my vote counted or not."                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
4:46:54 PM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR  SHOWER  asked  if  it  was true  that  she  received  both                                                               
applications and ballots that she did not request.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
MS.  SEIBERT  replied, "I  am  100  percent positive  I  received                                                               
ballots after I threw away applications."                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SHOWER  asked if  it was  true that  she received  a letter                                                               
from the state advising that her data had been compromised.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MS. SEIBERT answered yes.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
4:47:37 PM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR  HOLLAND restated  that Ms.  Seibert received  two ballot                                                               
applications  followed  by two  ballots.  He  asked if  that  was                                                               
correct.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
MS. SEIBERT replied, "That is correct."                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
4:47:53 PM                                                                                                                    
BARBARA  HANEY, representing  self,  North  Pole, Alaska,  stated                                                               
that  she works  for  a legislator  but was  calling  on her  own                                                               
behalf.  She  related  that she  frequently  consults  the  voter                                                               
database  because she  fields questions  from  people in  several                                                               
districts. When  people come in  with questions she looks  up the                                                               
person's district  and lets their representative  know that their                                                               
constituent has a certain problem.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
MS. HANEY assured the committee  that the voter database has some                                                               
problems. She  sent about 5,000  letters to new voters  since the                                                               
prior election and  about 15 percent were  returned as "addressee                                                               
unknown."  She said  the  database  also has  quite  a number  of                                                               
voters who have passed, who no  longer vote, and some who are not                                                               
citizens.  She opined  that  until the  database  is cleaned  up,                                                               
anybody remotely interested in integrity would support SB 39.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SHOWER said everyone should  be concerned about getting the                                                               
election system as tight as  possible. It is difficult to believe                                                               
that anybody could say nothing needs to be done.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
MS. HANEY  added that her  late husband  was an immigrant  and he                                                               
received volumes of  mail from the Voter  Information Center. She                                                               
later learned that anybody with  the political affiliation U or N                                                               
was targeted.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SHOWER said he does not  know who committed the data breach                                                               
or how the information was used.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
MS. HANEY thanked  the chair for his work on  the legislation and                                                               
said she had a few ideas about how to clean up the voter rolls.                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SHOWER welcomed her ideas.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
4:58:10 PM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR SHOWER held SB 39 in committee.                                                                                           

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
SB 25 Amendment 1.pdf SSTA 2/25/2021 3:30:00 PM
SB 25
SB 25 Amendment 2.pdf SSTA 2/25/2021 3:30:00 PM
SB 25
SB 25 Amendment 3.pdf SSTA 2/25/2021 3:30:00 PM
SB 25
SB 25 Amendment 4.pdf SSTA 2/25/2021 3:30:00 PM
SB 25
SB 25 Amendment 5.pdf SSTA 2/25/2021 3:30:00 PM
SB 25
SB 25 CS.pdf SSTA 2/25/2021 3:30:00 PM
SB 25
SB 25 Explanation of Changes.pdf SSTA 2/25/2021 3:30:00 PM
SB 25
SB 25.pdf SSTA 2/25/2021 3:30:00 PM
SB 25