Legislature(1993 - 1994)

04/07/1994 01:00 PM CRA

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= 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.)                                    
  ANCHORAGE, introduced Scott Brand-Erickson.                                  
  Number 060                                                                   
  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                                                                   
  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.                                      
  CHAIRMAN OLBERG adjourned the meeting at 1:23 p.m.                           

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