Legislature(1993 - 1994)
04/07/1994 01:00 PM CRA
* first hearing in first committee of referral
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
HOUSE COMMUNITY AND REGIONAL AFFAIRS STANDING COMMITTEE April 7, 1994 1:00 p.m. MEMBERS PRESENT Representative Harley Olberg, Chairman Representative Jerry Sanders, Vice-Chair Representative Con Bunde Representative Ed Willis Representative Bill Williams MEMBERS ABSENT Representative John Davies COMMITTEE CALENDAR HB 502: "An Act relating to mandated municipal activities or services." PASSED FROM COMMITTEE WITH INDIVIDUAL RECOMMENDATIONS AS CSHB 502 WITNESS REGISTER MICHELLE TOOHEY, Legislative Staff Representative Mark Hanley Capitol Building, Room 515 Juneau, AK 99801-1182 Phone: 465-4939 POSITION STATEMENT: Staff to Prime Sponsor of HB 502 DANIEL MOORE, Capital Budget Officer Municipality of Anchorage 632 W. 6th Street Anchorage, AK 99519 Phone: 343-4496 POSITION STATEMENT: Supported HB 502 SCOTT BRAND-ERICKSON, Attorney Municipality of Anchorage 632 W. 6th Street Anchorage, AK 99519 Phone: 343-4496 POSITION STATEMENT: Supported HB 502 PREVIOUS ACTION BILL: HB 502 SHORT TITLE: MANDATED MUNICIPAL SERVICES SPONSOR(S): REPRESENTATIVE(S) HANLEY JRN-DATE JRN-PG ACTION 02/14/94 2382 (H) READ THE FIRST TIME/REFERRAL(S) 02/14/94 2382 (H) CRA, FINANCE 03/22/94 (H) CRA AT 01:00 PM CAPITOL 124 03/29/94 (H) CRA AT 01:00 PM CAPITOL 124 03/29/94 (H) MINUTE(CRA) 04/05/94 (H) CRA AT 01:00 PM CAPITOL 124 04/07/94 (H) CRA AT 01:00 PM CAPITOL 124 ACTION NARRATIVE TAPE 94-16, SIDE A Number 000 CHAIRMAN HARLEY OLBERG called the meeting to order at 1:05 p.m. He noted for the record Representatives Willis, Williams, Toohey and Sanders were present and that a quorum was present. HB 502 - MANDATED MUNICIPAL SERVICES Number 035 REPRESENTATIVE JERRY SANDERS moved that the amendment brought forth by Representative Hanley's staff be adopted. There were no objections. REPRESENTATIVE BUNDE joined the committee at 1:07 p.m. CHAIRMAN OLBERG then referred to the bill substitute brought forth authored by the municipality of Anchorage folks. (A copy of this bill substitute is on file.) DANIEL MOORE, CAPITAL BUDGET OFFICER, MUNICIPALITY OF ANCHORAGE, introduced Scott Brand-Erickson. Number 060 SCOTT BRAND-ERICKSON, ATTORNEY, MUNICIPALITY OF ANCHORAGE, testified via teleconference. He said, "The proposed substitute that I believe you have copies of, we've put together responding to some of the questions that were raised last week and also adding in some information and new provisions relating to the municipality of Anchorage. Specific things that we tried to address...it was reorganized to add some definitions and some implementation provisions. One of the questions that Representative Davies had was (to) differentiate between fundamental local government requirements and mandates. And that is attempted through differentiating with when the municipality does something that's either voluntary or does something that's in proprietary capacity. For example, the example last week was, if you decide to have a swimming pool, the requirement that you have some sort of chlorination system is kind of a secondary mandate that's carried with it because you decided to have a swimming pool. That secondary requirement would be something (we) would remain responsible for. The definitions that are used are adapted in part from Massachusetts and California provisions. The main thrust of the original bill is set out in what is subsection `b' in the substitute bill. Included in that is an outlet for an escape valve so that if the legislature has a particular mandate that is so important that it shouldn't be subject to this restriction, they can so designate. Subsection `c' would be the section requiring an initial fiscal note on the bill indicating whether it included a mandate or not. Subsection `d'- if for example a municipality disagrees with the characterization, it provides a procedural vehicle for them to speak in review of that. We're trying to keep those sorts of issues out of the courts as much as possible... Subsection `e' is one that we cut generally ourselves and the reasoning behind this was, if a mandate, maybe not be fully funded but partially funded, allowing the local communities to go ahead and do what they can with the money provided towards the policy goal that are set up by the legislature by deleting them the cost of the program that's now funded. Subsection `f', is to address the situation where perhaps there is a program fully funded in the initial year, but the next year the funding is cut in half. It addresses what would happen allowing the local municipality to adjust the level of services provided." Number 154 REPRESENTATIVE ED WILLIS asked, "Provision `e' of the proposed substitute, what effect would that have on for example, the property tax exemptions for disabled veterans and seniors. How would it play out?" MR. BRAND-ERICKSON replied, "The way the bill would be effective... if the programs were fully funded, say for example, it would cost for the municipality of Anchorage three million dollars to provide that exemption... If the amount appropriated for that purpose was only one million dollars, then, the municipality of Anchorage would be able to either adjust the exemption valuation or adjust the amount of tax exemption that would be provided under the program. With the policy still being providing a tax break to the seniors and the disabled." REPRESENTATIVE WILLIS continued, "But the funding source then would be exclusively from the state or whatever the state chose to fund at that particular year?" MR. BRAND-ERICKSON confirmed, "Yes, that is correct." Number 180 REPRESENTATIVE WILLIS questioned, "And presently, the municipality would have to pick up the difference, under the present law?" MR. BRAND-ERICKSON said, "Without this bill, that is correct. And that raises a policy issue that may have some differences between them, between the original version and this proposed substitute and that is the impact on the existing programs. As drafted, the proposed substitute would be intended to impact existing mandates to the extent that those become unfunded in the future, allowing the insiders to adjust the services they provide according to the funding available. In the initial proposal it wasn't clear exactly what effect there would be if something was funded and then in subsequent years it was not funded." REPRESENTATIVE WILLIS concluded, "Then the effect of this proposed amendment would actually act as a repealer to the present law." MR. BRAND-ERICKSON agreed, "To the extent that the program was not fully funded, that is correct." REPRESENTATIVE BILL WILLIAMS said, "Would the sponsor of the bill accept this proposed committee substitute?" Number 215 MICHELLE TOOHEY, STAFF TO REPRESENTATIVE HANLEY, PRIME SPONSOR OF HB 502, testified, "If you look at our version of the legislation it clearly says `a law enacted after the effective date of this section.' It was not intended to affect any existing programs and I think that Representative Hanley would feel more comfortable keeping it to new legislation after this bill goes into effect." CHAIRMAN OLBERG said, "I think I would feel more comfortable with that... I think that anything that exists in statute now needs to be specifically addressed rather than try to broad brush everything..." REPRESENTATIVE BUNDE agreed, "The idea of going back and doing it retroactively is, I don't think, do-able. But, I had another question, if I might, there have been some concerns brought up about the reimbursement mandate requirement and in the sponsor statement (says) many other states have adopted and successfully implemented some form of this. Could you give us some information about what states, what form and how it's working." MR. BRAND-ERICKSON said, "I've looked at the Massachusetts and California statutes more than some of the other states. My understanding is that there are some eight or so states that have statutory or constitutional provisions regarding state mandates. And there's a report put together by, I think it was the General Accounting Office...about state mandates. The two states that I have looked at: California, it was through proposition 13 in 1979... In Massachusetts, there was a statutory provision that included some review of whether a particular proposal includes additional burdens on local government and then allows for a local option where they decide if they're going to carry through with it or not... One additional comment I'd like to offer regarding the concerns expressed about the decreased funding. A provision was put in that if funding in later years is decreased, that it would gut whatever programs were there. That was something that was not reflected, but something I put in that the municipality would prefer to see, if it's the intention of the committee to not include that, it would be fairly simple to delete that effect in the proposed substitute by revising the definition of the increase in level of activity or service by deleting the reference to decreased funding and eliminating subsection `b' and put a statement to the effect that reductions in the level of state funding when they aren't accompanied by a change in statute setting up a program, don't trigger rendering the statute ineffective. And finally, deleting subsection `f' in its entirety." Number 304 REPRESENTATIVE BUNDE said, "I'm afraid this is a dark suit bill. ...it gives you a warm feeling but not much happens (and) nobody else notices. And as we're well aware, nothing we do binds a future legislature." CHAIRMAN OLBERG said, "State statute does Representative Bunde, they can change it granted. I would think a wise municipality, in view of turned revenue projections, would be reluctant to start new programs that had any relationship to state funding quite frankly..." Number 338 REPRESENTATIVE WILLIAMS moved to pass HB 502 as amended out of committee with individual recommendations. CHAIRMAN OLBERG clarified that the amended version of HB 502 was the sponsor's version of the bill and not the proposed substitute from the municipality of Anchorage. There were no objections to the motion. ADJOURNMENT CHAIRMAN OLBERG adjourned the meeting at 1:23 p.m.