Legislature(2021 - 2022)BARNES 124

03/02/2021 08:00 AM House COMMUNITY & REGIONAL AFFAIRS

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08:03:07 AM Start
08:03:55 AM Overview(s): Department of Corrections
09:06:00 AM Overview(s): Department of Public Safety
10:03:35 AM Adjourn
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
-- Teleconference <Listen Only> --
- Dept. of Corrections
- Dept. of Public Safety
**Streamed live on AKL.tv**
                    ALASKA STATE LEGISLATURE                                                                                  
    HOUSE COMMUNITY AND REGIONAL AFFAIRS STANDING COMMITTEE                                                                   
                         March 2, 2021                                                                                          
                           8:03 a.m.                                                                                            
MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                               
Representative Sara Hannan, Co-Chair (via teleconference)                                                                       
Representative Calvin Schrage, Co-Chair                                                                                         
Representative Josiah Patkotak, Vice Chair (via teleconference)                                                                 
Representative Harriet Drummond                                                                                                 
Representative Mike Prax (via teleconference)                                                                                   
Representative Ken McCarty                                                                                                      
Representative Kevin McCabe                                                                                                     
MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                                                                
All members present                                                                                                             
COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                                                                            
OVERVIEW(S): DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS                                                                                          
     - HEARD                                                                                                                    
OVERVIEW(S): DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC SAFETY                                                                                        
     - HEARD                                                                                                                    
PREVIOUS COMMITTEE ACTION                                                                                                     
No previous action to record                                                                                                    
WITNESS REGISTER                                                                                                              
NANCY DAHLSTROM, Commissioner                                                                                                   
Department of Corrections                                                                                                       
Anchorage, Alaska                                                                                                               
POSITION STATEMENT:  Gave an overview on the Department of                                                                    
Corrections via a PowerPoint presentation.                                                                                      
APRIL WILKERSON, Director                                                                                                       
Administrative Services                                                                                                         
Department of Corrections                                                                                                       
Anchorage, Alaska                                                                                                               
POSITION STATEMENT:  Answered questions during the overview of                                                                
the Department of Corrections.                                                                                                  
KELLY GOODE, Deputy Commissioner                                                                                                
Office of the Commissioner                                                                                                      
Department of Corrections                                                                                                       
Anchorage, Alaska                                                                                                               
POSITION  STATEMENT:   Addressed  slides  and answered  questions                                                             
during the overview on the Department of Corrections.                                                                           
KELLY HOWELL, Interim Commissioner                                                                                              
Department of Public Safety                                                                                                     
Anchorage, Alaska                                                                                                               
POSITION  STATEMENT:   Gave  an  overview  of the  Department  of                                                             
Public Safety via a PowerPoint Presentation.                                                                                    
COLONEL BRYAN BARLOW, Director                                                                                                  
Alaska State Troopers                                                                                                           
Anchorage, Alaska                                                                                                               
POSITION STATEMENT:   Answered questions  during the  overview of                                                             
the Department of Public Safety.                                                                                                
MAJOR STEVEN ADAMS, Director                                                                                                    
Alaska Wildlife Troopers                                                                                                        
Department of Public Safety                                                                                                     
Anchorage, Alaska                                                                                                               
POSITION STATEMENT:   Answered questions  during the  overview of                                                             
the Department of Public Safety.                                                                                                
KATHRYN MONFREDA, Director                                                                                                      
Division of Statewide Services                                                                                                  
Department of Public Safety                                                                                                     
Anchorage, Alaska                                                                                                               
POSITION STATEMENT:  Responded to  a question during the overview                                                             
of the Department of Public Safety.                                                                                             
ELIZABETH DUNAYSKI, Director                                                                                                    
Division of Administrative Services                                                                                             
Department of Public Safety                                                                                                     
Anchorage, Alaska                                                                                                               
POSITION STATEMENT:   Responded to questions  during the overview                                                             
of the Department of Public Safety.                                                                                             
ROBERT GRIFFITHS, Executive Director                                                                                            
Alaska Police Standards Council                                                                                                 
Department of Public Safety                                                                                                     
Anchorage, Alaska                                                                                                               
POSITION STATEMENT:   Responded to questions  during the overview                                                             
of the Department of Public Safety.                                                                                             
DIANE CASTO, Executive Director                                                                                                 
Council of Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault                                                                                 
Department of Public Safety                                                                                                     
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:   Answered a question during  the overview of                                                             
the Department of Public Safety.                                                                                                
ACTION NARRATIVE                                                                                                              
8:03:07 AM                                                                                                                    
CO-CHAIR CALVIN  SCHRAGE called the House  Community and Regional                                                             
Affairs  Standing  Committee  meeting   to  order  at  8:03  a.m.                                                               
Representatives  Drummond,  McCarty,  McCabe,  and  Schrage  were                                                               
present at  the call to  order.  Representatives  Patkotak, Prax,                                                               
and Hannan  arrived (via  teleconference) as  the meeting  was in                                                               
^OVERVIEW(S): Department of Corrections                                                                                         
             OVERVIEW(S): Department of Corrections                                                                         
8:03:55 AM                                                                                                                    
CO-CHAIR  SCHRAGE  announced that  the  first  order of  business                                                               
would be an overview of the Department of Corrections.                                                                          
8:04:48 AM                                                                                                                    
NANCY  DAHLSTROM, Commissioner,  Department of  Corrections, gave                                                               
an overview  of the  Department of  Corrections via  a PowerPoint                                                               
presentation [hard copy  included in the committee  packet].  She                                                               
directed attention to  slide 2, "Mission and  Core Services," the                                                               
portion of which read as  follows [original punctuation provided,                                                               
with some formatting changes]:                                                                                                  
     Mission:  To  provide secure  confinement,  reformative                                                                    
     programs,  and   a  process  of   supervised  community                                                                    
     reintegration to enhance the safety of our communities                                                                     
     Department FY2022 Positions: 2,055                                                                                         
     Department FY2022 Budget Request: $398,490.4                                                                               
COMMISSIONER   DAHLSTROM   related   that   the   Department   of                                                               
Corrections (DOC) was established in  March 1984 by Governor Bill                                                               
Sheffield, via  Executive Order 55.   Prior to  that, Corrections                                                               
was within the Division of Health  and Social Services.  She said                                                               
DOC's  mission is  "grounded  in the  state  constitution."   She                                                               
explained  that   slide  2  illustrates   how  DOC   divides  its                                                               
responsibilities by [division].                                                                                                 
COMMISSIONER DAHLSTROM turned to  slide 3, "Core Services," which                                                               
spells out that  for which DOC is responsible, and  which read as                                                               
follows  [original  punctuation  provided, with  some  formatting                                                               
     Secure Confinement                                                                                                         
     ? 12 in-state correctional facilities                                                                                      
     ? 15 regional community jails                                                                                              
     ? Classification and furlough                                                                                              
     ? Inmate transportation                                                                                                    
     ? Physical health care                                                                                                     
     ? Correctional academy                                                                                                     
     Supervised Release                                                                                                         
     ? Statewide pretrial, probation and parole offices                                                                         
     ? 7 community residential centers                                                                                          
     ? Electronic monitoring                                                                                                    
     ? Correctional academy                                                                                                     
     ? Parole board                                                                                                             
     Reformative Programs                                                                                                       
     ? Behavioral health care                                                                                                   
     ? Substance abuse treatment                                                                                                
     ? Sex offender management                                                                                                  
     ? Education and vocational programs                                                                                        
     ? Domestic violence intervention programs                                                                                  
     ? Faith-based services                                                                                                     
     ? Recidivism reduction                                                                                                     
     ? Reentry services                                                                                                         
8:07:20 AM                                                                                                                    
COMMISSIONER DAHLSTROM showed an  "Organizational Chart" on slide                                                               
4, which  lists the  following:   The Commissioner's  Office, the                                                               
Division   of   Institutions,   the  Division   of   Health   and                                                               
Rehabilitation Services, the Division  of Pretrial, Probation and                                                               
Parole, the  Division of Administrative Services,  and the Parole                                                               
Board.    As  noted  on  slide  2,  she  said  DOC  currently  is                                                               
requesting a total of 2,055 permanent, full-time positions.                                                                     
8:08:06 AM                                                                                                                    
CO-CHAIR HANNAN asked whether the  2,055 positions were static or                                                               
a change.                                                                                                                       
COMMISSIONER DAHLSTROM clarified that  she had misspoken and that                                                               
2,055 relates to  current positions.  In response  to a follow-up                                                               
question regarding  additional staff  requested, she  deferred to                                                               
April Wilkerson.                                                                                                                
8:09:01 AM                                                                                                                    
APRIL  WILKERSON, Director,  Administrative Services,  Department                                                               
of Corrections,  related that  DOC is  asking for  two additional                                                               
auditors  for  the  internal   controls  associated  with  inmate                                                               
banking and  property.   The positions  are being  requested with                                                               
funding  of  interagency receipt  authority  "to  be billed  back                                                               
throughout  the  department   based  on  efficiencies  identified                                                               
through these audit  activities."  She said there  is a reduction                                                               
in positions; therefore,  the net effect in positions  would be a                                                               
positive one  position in  the fiscal year  2022 (FY  22) budget.                                                               
She  explained that  the  positions  associated with  procurement                                                               
consolidation would be transferred out of the budget.                                                                           
8:10:10 AM                                                                                                                    
COMMISSIONER DAHLSTROM  moved on to  slide 5, "DOC at  a Glance,"                                                               
which read  as follows [original punctuation  provided, with some                                                               
formatting changes]:                                                                                                            
     Alaska is  one of seven  states that operate  a unified                                                                    
     correctional system.  A state unified system  is one in                                                                    
     which  there is  an integrated  state-level prison  and                                                                    
     jail system.                                                                                                               
       DOC booked 31,204 offenders into its facilities in                                                                       
          19,959 were unique offenders                                                                                          
          1,452 were non-criminal Title 47 bookings                                                                             
        As of 12/31/2020, DOC was responsible for 10,626                                                                        
          4,559 offenders in jail or prison                                                                                     
        187 offenders on sentenced electronic monitoring                                                                        
         243 offenders in community residential centers                                                                         
        2,729 defendants on pretrial supervision (1,456                                                                         
          on pretrial EM)                                                                                                       
          2,908 offenders on probation or parole                                                                                
COMMISSIONER  DAHLSTROM  noted  that the  following  states  have                                                               
unified  correctional systems:    Alaska, Connecticut,  Delaware,                                                               
Hawai'i, Rhode Island, and West Virginia.                                                                                       
8:11:38 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE  DRUMMOND,  on  behalf   of  new  members  on  the                                                               
committee,  requested  a  definition   of  noncriminal  Title  47                                                               
COMMISSIONER DAHLSTROM  explained that  sometimes police  need to                                                               
bring individuals, usually those with  mental health issues, to a                                                               
holding place while  it is decided where the  individuals will be                                                               
8:12:34 AM                                                                                                                    
CO-CHAIR HANNAN,  regarding the Title 47  bookings, asked whether                                                               
the  1,452 reflected  "unique  offenders" and,  if  so, what  the                                                               
total number of bookings was out of the [31,024] bookings.                                                                      
MS.  WILKERSON answered  that  1,400  reflects total  individuals                                                               
held  under  Title  47.    She  said  she  would  follow-up  with                                                               
information regarding  the number  of unique individuals  held in                                                               
DOC's facilities on multiple occasions.                                                                                         
8:14:01 AM                                                                                                                    
COMMISSIONER DAHLSTROM remarked  that some of the  folks are held                                                               
more than once.                                                                                                                 
CO-CHAIR  HANNAN  confirmed she  had  speculated  "many of  those                                                               
mental health  holds are  not resolved  in a  single hold."   She                                                               
maintained  that DOC  provides the  vast majority  of the  crisis                                                               
mental health services in the state.                                                                                            
8:14:47 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE MCCARTY  asked for  confirmation that  because the                                                               
Alaska Psychiatric  Institute (API) currently  cannot accommodate                                                               
these individuals with mental health  issues, DOC has become "the                                                               
next choice to serve these individuals."                                                                                        
COMMISSIONER DAHLSTROM  remarked that  previously there  had been                                                               
circumstances  that  made  API   unable  to  accept  individuals;                                                               
however, the  majority of those  situations have  been addressed,                                                               
and DOC does  not "see the Title  47 like we used to."   She said                                                               
the department could provide further details in the future.                                                                     
8:15:57 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE  MCCABE  expressed   interest  in  learning  about                                                               
"frequent fliers" in terms of victims of abuse and inebriates.                                                                  
COMMISSIONER DAHLSTROM  said sometimes  people come to  DOC under                                                               
the influence  of drugs or  alcohol.  She reminded  the committee                                                               
that DOC is  "a downstream agency," meaning that  it takes people                                                               
sent  from  court and  the  Department  of  Public Safety.    She                                                               
emphasized that DOC  does the best it can with  these people, but                                                               
it does not determine "who comes in  the door."  In response to a                                                               
request  from  Representative  McCarty,  she  agreed  to  provide                                                               
demographics regarding the individuals held by DOC.                                                                             
8:17:32 AM                                                                                                                    
COMMISSIONER DAHLSTROM  returned to  the PowerPoint, to  slide 6,                                                               
"Division  of Institution,"  and covered  the information,  which                                                               
read  as  follows  [original   punctuation  provided,  with  some                                                               
formatting changes]:                                                                                                            
Institution Director's Office                                                                                                   
     Inmate Time Accounting                                                                                                     
     Chaplaincy Program                                                                                                         
     Prison Rape Elimination Act Oversight                                                                                      
     Inmate Grievance Resolution                                                                                                
     Security Threat Group                                                                                                      
Classification and Furlough                                                                                                     
     Inmate Classification                                                                                                      
     Inmate Furlough                                                                                                            
Inmate Transportation and Point of Arrest                                                                                       
     Inmate Medical Transports                                                                                                  
     Inmate Housing Transports                                                                                                  
     K-9 Unit                                                                                                                   
     Point of Arrest                                                                                                            
COMMISSIONER DAHLSTROM  stated that  the mission of  the Division                                                               
of  Institution  is  to  promote  public  safety  through  secure                                                               
confinement and  provide access to reformative  programs, as well                                                               
as   offender  management   planning  that   promotes  successful                                                               
community reentry.   She talked about  the K-9 unit.   She turned                                                               
to slide  7, which  provides a map  depicting locations  of jails                                                               
throughout  Alaska.   Slide  8  she showed  to  provide a  prison                                                               
status comparison  and give some  statistics:  In July  2019, the                                                               
unsentenced percentage  was 47.41 percent;  in July 2020,  it was                                                               
29.64 percent; in February 2021, it was 54.50 percent.                                                                          
8:19:40 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE MCCABE  referred to  slide 7  and asked  about the                                                               
Palmer Correctional Center.                                                                                                     
COMMISSIONER DAHLSTROM  said she anticipates the  department will                                                               
open the  Palmer Correctional  in July  2021.  She  said it  is a                                                               
large state contract managed by  the Department of Transportation                                                               
&  Public Facilities  (DOT&PF).   There is  a superintendent  and                                                               
assistant  superintendent,  and  others  are being  hired.    She                                                               
expressed  her  hope  that  committee   members  would  have  the                                                               
opportunity to tour the facility.                                                                                               
8:21:25 AM                                                                                                                    
CO-CHAIR  HANNAN, referring  to slide  8, asked  for a  breakdown                                                               
between  felony and  misdemeanor charges  within the  unsentenced                                                               
COMMISSIONER DAHLSTROM  said she  would provide  that information                                                               
for the committee.                                                                                                              
8:22:03 AM                                                                                                                    
COMMISSIONER  DAHLSTROM  directed  attention to  slide  9,  which                                                               
shows  a pie  chart  depicting "Prison  Population  by Length  of                                                               
Stay."  In  response to Co-Chair Schrage, she  clarified it shows                                                               
the total  length of stay.   She  then presented slide  10, which                                                               
shows a pie chart depicting "Prison Populations by Offenses."                                                                   
8:23:18 AM                                                                                                                    
CO-CHAIR SCHRAGE asked for a  breakdown as to how the coronavirus                                                               
has affected prison population.                                                                                                 
COMMISSIONER DAHLSTROM said she would provide that information.                                                                 
8:24:02 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE MCCABE  asked for  a definition of  two categories                                                               
in the pie chart on slide 10:  "person" and "federal hold."                                                                     
COMMISSIONER   DAHLSTROM  explained   that   federal  holds   are                                                               
prisoners in custody  of DOC's facilities but  legally in custody                                                               
of the  US. Marshall for various  crimes.  She noted  that Alaska                                                               
is the  only state  in the  nation with no  federal prison.   She                                                               
said this is  also the area where military members  would be held                                                               
if  necessary.    In  response   to  a  follow-up  question,  she                                                               
confirmed that DOC is reimbursed  by the federal government.  She                                                               
deferred  to  Ms.  Wilkerson to  offer  statistics  requested  by                                                               
Representative McCabe.                                                                                                          
8:26:01 AM                                                                                                                    
MS. WILKERSON said DOC conducts  an annual cost-of-care report to                                                               
calculate a  daily rate  that is then  reimbursed by  the federal                                                               
8:26:38 AM                                                                                                                    
COMMISSIONER  DAHLSTROM  moved on  to  slide  [11], "Division  of                                                               
Health  and   Rehab  Services,"  which  includes   the  following                                                               
information [original punctuation provided]:                                                                                    
     Health & Rehabilitation Director's Office                                                                                  
          Medical Oversight                                                                                                     
          Medicaid Assistance                                                                                                   
     Physical Health Care                                                                                                       
     Behavioral Health Care                                                                                                     
          Mental Health Services                                                                                                
     Substance Abuse                                                                                                            
          Residential Treatment                                                                                                 
          Institutional Out-Patient Treatment                                                                                   
     Sex Offender Management                                                                                                    
          Institutional Sex Offender Program                                                                                    
          Community Sex Offender Program                                                                                        
     Domestic Violence Program                                                                                                  
          Batterer's Intervention Program                                                                                       
     Reentry & Recidivism Unit                                                                                                  
          Offender Reentry                                                                                                      
          Community Coordination                                                                                                
     Education/Vocational Programs                                                                                              
          Basic Adult Education                                                                                                 
          Apprenticeship Training                                                                                               
          Vocational Training                                                                                                   
COMMISSIONER  DAHLSTROM   remarked  that  DOC  is   committed  to                                                               
professionalism,  quality, and  safety in  terms of  the care  it                                                               
provides  to  inmates.    She  said  many  people  arrive  in  an                                                               
unhealthy  state and  leave much  healthier.   She  said all  are                                                               
treated compassionately and  given the help they need.   In terms                                                               
of reentry, she  said DOC wants a successful  transition of those                                                               
released  to   their  communities,  and  this   is  done  through                                                               
collaborative   release   planning    and   individualized   case                                                               
management  planning.     Also  important  is   positive  family,                                                               
community, and peer support.   She indicated that the coronavirus                                                               
has  brought  about  challenges in  this  area,  but  [successful                                                               
transition] remains the department's goal.                                                                                      
8:28:11 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE  MCCABE asked  how valuable  the programs  offered                                                               
are in the success of reintroducing someone into the population.                                                                
COMMISSIONER DAHLSTROM said  she could get the  numbers, but said                                                               
there  is  no  magic  number  or formula.    She  explained  that                                                               
sometimes individuals  need to try  several times, and  they have                                                               
to  want to  succeed; sometimes  they "don't  know another  way."                                                               
The goal  with educational and  vocational programs are  not just                                                               
for success;  they also teach  basic life skills like  showing up                                                               
on time, for example.                                                                                                           
8:30:05 AM                                                                                                                    
CO-CHAIR   HANNAN   asked    for   more   information   regarding                                                               
apprenticeship  programs  and  training  programs  and  how  many                                                               
inmates are able to make use of them.                                                                                           
COMMISSIONER DAHLSTROM  said she would have  the information sent                                                               
to  the whole  committee.    She shared  that  COVID-19 has  been                                                               
challenging.   For example, she made  the decision a year  ago to                                                               
stop much  of the  programing, because  the department  could not                                                               
have the  volunteers and instructors  coming into  the facilities                                                               
during the  pandemic.  She  said there are  a lot of  things that                                                               
have  been on  hold,  and the  department is  looking  at how  to                                                               
return to "normal."                                                                                                             
CO-CHAIR HANNAN  said she  is not only  interested in  the formal                                                               
apprenticeships  but also  separate, independent  apprenticeships                                                               
and training that may have been  available in the past and DOC is                                                               
hoping to reoffer.                                                                                                              
COMMISSIONER   DAHLSTROM  replied   that  she   would  get   that                                                               
information.  She  talked about a good program  with iron workers                                                               
operated  from a  trailer that  goes  to the  facilities.   Those                                                               
running  the  program  make  the  promise  to  hire  inmates  who                                                               
complete  the  program  upon  their release.    She  mentioned  a                                                               
barbershop program with a high success rate.                                                                                    
8:33:23 AM                                                                                                                    
CO-CHAIR  SCHRAGE ventured  these  programs boost  morale in  the                                                               
prison population.   He questioned  whether the pause in  some of                                                               
these  programs in  response to  the pandemic  has resulted  in a                                                               
decrease in morale or an increase in violence or vandalism.                                                                     
COMMISSIONER   DAHLSTROM  described   ways  the   department  has                                                               
counterbalanced  the  loss  of some  programs  with  things  like                                                               
movies,  treat nights,  and an  increase  in the  number of  free                                                               
phone  calls allowed,  among other  things.   She lauded  the job                                                               
superintendents have been doing, as  well as medical officers and                                                               
8:35:14 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE MCCARTY expressed appreciation  for the work being                                                               
done by  DOC during the  pandemic.  He asked  about opportunities                                                               
for helping inmates as related to COVID-19.                                                                                     
COMMISSIONER DAHLSTROM  spoke about  the tiered offerings  of the                                                               
vaccine and the voluntary nature of receiving the vaccine.                                                                      
8:37:04 AM                                                                                                                    
COMMISSIONER DAHLSTROM  returned to the  PowerPoint presentation,                                                               
to slide 12,  "Division of Pretrial, Probation,  & Parole," which                                                               
read as follows [original punctuation provided]:                                                                                
     Probation and Parole Director's Office                                                                                     
          Victim Service Unit                                                                                                   
     Pretrial Services                                                                                                          
          Basic Supervision                                                                                                     
          Enhanced Supervision                                                                                                  
     Statewide Probation and Parole                                                                                             
          13 regional locations                                                                                                 
          Probation Accountability with Certain Enforcement                                                                     
          Pre-Sentencing Unit                                                                                                   
          Interstate Compact                                                                                                    
8:38:00 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE MCCARTY  asked whether there is  a problem wherein                                                               
released inmates from  rural villages may be required  to stay in                                                               
Anchorage  because there  may not  be a  parole officer  in their                                                               
home community.                                                                                                                 
COMMISSIONER  DAHLSTROM said  that  is not  a  challenge; DOC  is                                                               
responsible  for  getting  a  person   back  to  his/her  "arrest                                                               
location."   She related there has  been a challenge at  times in                                                               
bringing the person back to a  community that has "shut down" due                                                               
to COVID-19  mitigation practices.   In those  circumstances, DOC                                                               
has  ensured the  person has  housing and,  when appropriate,  is                                                               
brought back to his/her home community.                                                                                         
8:39:27 AM                                                                                                                    
COMMISSIONER  DAHLSTROM brought  attention the  map of  Alaska on                                                               
slide   13,  "Supervised   Release,"  which   shows  areas   with                                                               
supervised   release,   community    residential   centers,   and                                                               
electronic monitoring locations.   She then asked  Kelly Goode to                                                               
discuss slides 14 and 15.                                                                                                       
8:40:13 AM                                                                                                                    
KELLY  GOODE, Deputy  Commissioner, Office  of the  Commissioner,                                                               
Department  of   Corrections,  addressed  slide   14,  "Pre-Trial                                                               
Services Supervision," which shows the  numbers DOC has had.  She                                                               
pointed out  that the numbers  have increased because  people are                                                               
staying  longer.   She said  this  chart shows  how COVID-19  has                                                               
affected the pre-trial  service area.  She moved on  to slide 15,                                                               
"Statewide Probation  & Parole," which  shows the numbers  of the                                                               
caseloads  being  covered  currently.     She  said  there  is  a                                                               
statutory  limit of  75 for  caseloads, and  the director  of the                                                               
division works hard to ensure that number is not exceeded.                                                                      
8:41:35 AM                                                                                                                    
COMMISSIONER  DAHLSTROM highlighted  items  listed  on slide  16,                                                               
"Division  of Administrative  Services,"  which  read as  follows                                                               
[original punctuation provided, with some formatting changes]:                                                                  
     Administrative Services                                                                                                    
          Budget and Finance                                                                                                    
          Inmate Banking                                                                                                        
          Auditing and Internal Controls                                                                                        
          Payroll and Position Classification                                                                                   
          Construction Procurement and Space Liaison                                                                            
          Alcohol Ignition Interlock Device Certification                                                                       
          Departmental Ethics Supervisor                                                                                        
     Information Technology                                                                                                     
          Alaska Corrections Offender Management System                                                                         
          Inmate Law Library                                                                                                    
          Inmate Technology Support                                                                                             
     Research and Records                                                                                                       
          PFD Eligibility                                                                                                       
          Research and Reporting                                                                                                
          Criminal Justice Information Security                                                                                 
          Data Management                                                                                                       
     Facilities Capital Unit & OSHA Compliance                                                                                  
       Institution Renovation, Repairs, and Construction                                                                        
          OSHA Compliance and Oversight                                                                                         
     State Facilities Rent                                                                                                      
          Douglas Island Center Building                                                                                        
          Palmer State Office Building                                                                                          
COMMISSIONER  DAHLSTROM turned  to slide  17, "Board  of Parole,"                                                               
which read  as follows [original punctuation  provided, with some                                                               
formatting changes]:                                                                                                            
     Core Service: Supervised Release                                                                                           
     Board of Parole                                                                                                            
          Discretionary Parole                                                                                                  
          Mandatory Parole                                                                                                      
          Special Medical Parole                                                                                                
          Geriatric Parole                                                                                                      
          Clemency Investigations                                                                                               
     The Board of Parole consists of five members appointed                                                                     
     by the Governor                                                                                                            
COMMISSIONER DAHLSTROM drew attention to slide 18, "Office of                                                                   
the Commissioner," which read as follows [original punctuation                                                                  
provided, with some formatting changes]:                                                                                        
     Commissioner's Office                                                                                                      
          Constituent Relations                                                                                                 
          Compliance Standards                                                                                                  
          Inmate ADA Grievances                                                                                                 
          Public Information                                                                                                    
          Policy and Procedures                                                                                                 
     Recruitment and Retention                                                                                                  
          Recruitment Outreach                                                                                                  
          Applicant Assistance                                                                                                  
          Employee Backgrounds                                                                                                  
          Officer Medical Reimbursement                                                                                         
          Recruitment Incentive Leave Program                                                                                   
          Employee Wellness Program                                                                                             
     Training Academy                                                                                                           
          Basic Officer Training                                                                                                
          Field Officer Training                                                                                                
          Prisoner Transportation Officer Training                                                                              
          Firearm / Taser Training and Certification                                                                            
          Municipal Officer Academy                                                                                             
8:44:06 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE MCCABE asked for a breakdown on inmate ADA                                                                       
[Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990] grievances.                                                                           
COMMISSIONER DAHLSTROM said the department would get that                                                                       
information for Representative McCabe.                                                                                          
8:44:35 AM                                                                                                                    
CO-CHAIR HANNAN  noted that Alaska  has a unified  community jail                                                               
and prison  system, and she  asked which facilities  are operated                                                               
under municipal  officers and how  the Municipal  Academy differs                                                               
from other academies.                                                                                                           
COMMISSIONER DAHLSTROM deferred to Ms. Wilkerson.                                                                               
8:45:08 AM                                                                                                                    
MS. WILKERSON  answered that the  Municipal Officer Academy  is a                                                               
training academy provided  to local entities that  have their own                                                               
jails,  such  as Sand  Point,  which  are  outside of  the  state                                                               
prison.   In response to a  follow-up question as to  how closely                                                               
aligned  the Municipal  Officer Academy  training is  to that  of                                                               
fully  certified  correctional  officer training,  she  said  she                                                               
would get back  to Co-Chair Hannan with copies  of the curricula,                                                               
with  differences identified.    She added  that  if a  municipal                                                               
guard  applied  for  a  guard   position  within  DOC,  then  the                                                               
department would "take  a look at what training  has already been                                                               
provided," and the  candidate would be required "to  go through a                                                               
six-week academy with the department."                                                                                          
8:46:59 AM                                                                                                                    
COMMISSIONER DAHLSTROM  returned to the PowerPoint,  to slide 19,                                                               
"Goals  and   Objectives,"  which   read  as   follows  [original                                                               
punctuation provided, with some formatting changes]:                                                                            
     Protect the public                                                                                                         
     Provide safe and secure care and custody                                                                                   
      Ensure that incarcerated offenders spend productive                                                                       
     time while in custody                                                                                                      
     Reentry and community supervision                                                                                          
     Reduce recidivism                                                                                                          
     Work with stakeholders to achieve these goals                                                                              
8:47:37 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE  MCCARTY asked  for details  regarding efforts  to                                                               
reduce recidivism.                                                                                                              
COMMISSIONER DAHLSTROM  responded there is a  three-year lookback                                                               
related  to recidivism.   The  department constantly  reevaluates                                                               
its  programs.    In  response   to  a  follow-up  question,  she                                                               
confirmed there is a matrix used,  and she said she could provide                                                               
those numbers.                                                                                                                  
8:49:25 AM                                                                                                                    
CO-CHAIR HANNAN  said she  has had conversations  with DOC  for a                                                               
couple years to  try to close the loop related  to a component of                                                               
reentry:   legal identification  (ID) once  an inmate  leaves the                                                               
system.  She asked for an update.                                                                                               
COMMISSIONER DAHLSTROM deferred to Deputy Commissioner Goode.                                                                   
8:50:19 AM                                                                                                                    
DEPUTY  COMMISSIONER GOODE  assured Co-Chair  Hannan that  DOC is                                                               
working on the issue.   She reported that currently 12-14 percent                                                               
of inmates  released from a  facility do not  have ID.   She said                                                               
inmates are  given a  voucher they  can take  to any  Division of                                                               
Motor Vehicles  (DMV) office to obtain  an ID, which is  paid for                                                               
by DOC; records  show that 50-90 released inmates  per month will                                                               
turn in a voucher.                                                                                                              
CO-CHAIR  HANNAN  remarked that  there  has  been a  proposal  to                                                               
privatize at least six DMV offices  in Alaska.  She observed that                                                               
in  most cases  where DMV  has  a private  contractor, there  are                                                               
additional fees for services.   She asked whether DOC would cover                                                               
those additional fees.                                                                                                          
DEPUTY COMMISSIONER GOODE  said that is one aspect  that is being                                                               
considered, and she will share the data when available.                                                                         
8:53:27 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE MCCARTY asked what  12-14 percent translates to in                                                               
terms of the number of people.                                                                                                  
DEPUTY COMM  GOODE estimated that  12 equals 350 people  based on                                                               
the numbers of  the last few months; she said  she would find out                                                               
the number for the last full year.                                                                                              
REPRESENTATIVE  MCCARTY recalled  taking part  in a  mock reentry                                                               
program  conducted  in Juneau  a  year  ago.    He said,  "I  did                                                               
everything I  was supposed to do  in the mock thing,  and I still                                                               
went  back  to jail."    He  asked  whether  there had  been  any                                                               
consideration of inviting the DMV  to be part of the exit/reentry                                                               
process of inmates such that  the released inmates would not have                                                               
to go to a DMV office.                                                                                                          
COMMISSIONER DAHLSTROM  responded that  there have  been numerous                                                               
considerations made, including an idea  to create the IDs through                                                               
DOC; but DOC does not have that  authority.  She said she is open                                                               
to having  a conversation  with Representative  McCarty; however,                                                               
she  cautioned  that  there are  many  challenges  with  bringing                                                               
someone from  the DMV,  one of  which would  be the  necessity to                                                               
have a DMV staff person in each facility 24/7.                                                                                  
8:57:12 AM                                                                                                                    
COMMISSIONER DAHLSTROM  continued with  the PowerPoint,  to slide                                                               
20, "Hot Topics," which are:   COVID-19, recruitment, and the new                                                               
Palmer facility.   She said  her number  one priority is  to keep                                                               
all inmates  and staff safe.   The majority  of the time  DOC has                                                               
not only met, but often  exceeded, the requirements of the Center                                                               
for Disease Control  (CDC).  She spoke highly of  the staff.  She                                                               
mentioned again the opening of the facility in Palmer.                                                                          
8:59:45 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE  MCCABE  inquired  how   many  DOC  employees  are                                                               
unionized  and what  percentage of  DOC's budget  is allotted  to                                                               
COMMISSIONER  DAHLSTROM  replied  that  DOC  has  five  different                                                               
unions.  She deferred to Ms. Wilkerson to provide percentages.                                                                  
9:00:17 AM                                                                                                                    
MS. WILKERSON advised  that just over 62 percent  of DOC's budget                                                               
goes toward personnel costs; it  includes salaries, benefits, and                                                               
"employer costs."  In response  to a follow-up question, she said                                                               
over  95 percent  of DOC's  staff are  unionized; fewer  than one                                                               
dozen  positions are  exempt, and  those would  be, for  example,                                                               
medical  positions  and executive  staff.    The union  positions                                                               
exist   within   the   five  bargaining   units   referenced   by                                                               
Commissioner Dahlstrom.                                                                                                         
9:01:35 AM                                                                                                                    
COMMISSIONER DAHLSTROM directed attention  to slide 21, "COVID-19                                                               
Impacts," which  read as follows [original  punctuation provided,                                                               
with some formatting changes]:                                                                                                  
     OPERATIONAL IMPACTS                                                                                                        
     Court System Changes                                                                                                       
          Increase in pretrial release                                                                                          
          Increase in presentence population                                                                                    
     Attorney-client visit                                                                                                      
     Suspended visitation and certain programming                                                                               
     Free phone calls for inmates                                                                                               
     BUDGETARY IMPACTS                                                                                                          
     GF lapses associated with suspended programming                                                                            
     Federal funds offset:                                                                                                      
        $617,898 in COVID-19 leave and overtime related                                                                         
          $479,896 in COVID-19 related expenditures                                                                             
               Personal Protective Equipment, Cleaning and                                                                      
               Medical Supplies, Employee Fit Testing,                                                                          
               Employee Housing, Inmate Charters and                                                                            
               Housing, Inmate Stipends Related to                                                                              
               Increased Inmate Job Workers, Increased                                                                          
               Cleaning at All Institutions                                                                                     
COMMISSIONER DAHLSTROM  offered additional  information regarding                                                               
the attorney-client  visits.   She said  a "poly-comm"  system is                                                               
used and has resulted in more attorney-client time.                                                                             
MS. WILKERSON talked about the  budgetary impacts.  She said both                                                               
those  figures  [shown  in  slide 21]  were  funds  received  via                                                               
Department of  Health and Social  Services (DHSS) from  the CARES                                                               
Act  allocation  to DOC.    She  said  there will  be  additional                                                               
offsetting expenditures in the FY 21 budget.                                                                                    
COMMISSIONER DAHLSTROM added  that DOC did not  receive any CARES                                                               
Act money  directly from the  federal government; the  money came                                                               
from DHSS.   She then  showed slide  22 to indicate  the overview                                                               
was completed.                                                                                                                  
9:05:23 AM                                                                                                                    
CO-CHAIR  SCHRAGE ascertained  there  were  no further  questions                                                               
from the committee.                                                                                                             
9:05:37 AM                                                                                                                    
The committee took a brief at-ease at 9:05 a.m.                                                                                 
^OVERVIEW(S): Department of Public Safety                                                                                       
            OVERVIEW(S): Department of Public Safety                                                                        
9:06:00 AM                                                                                                                    
CO-CHAIR  SCHRAGE  announced that  the  final  order of  business                                                               
would be an overview of the Department of Public Safety.                                                                        
9:06:10 AM                                                                                                                    
KELLY HOWELL, Interim Commissioner,  Department of Public Safety,                                                               
said  she would  give an  overview  of the  Department of  Public                                                               
Safety (DPS)  via PowerPoint [hardcopy included  in the committee                                                               
packet],  with  questions deferred  to  area  experts within  the                                                               
department.   She directed attention  to slide 2,  "Department of                                                               
Public  Safety,"  which  read as  follows  [original  punctuation                                                               
     Our Mission                                                                                                                
     To ensure public safety and enforce fish and wildlife                                                                      
     Our Core Services                                                                                                          
     ? Law enforcement patrol and investigations                                                                                
     ? Rural law enforcement services                                                                                           
     ? Domestic violence and sexual assault programs                                                                            
     ? Statewide public safety programs                                                                                         
     ? Resource protection                                                                                                      
     ? Highway safety                                                                                                           
9:08:42 AM                                                                                                                    
INTERIM COMMISSIONER  HOWELL showed slide 3,  "Statewide Impact,"                                                               
which read as follows [original punctuation provided]:                                                                          
       DPS is Alaska's primary statewide law enforcement                                                                        
     Direct support to other agencies                                                                                           
          ? Investigative assistance                                                                                            
          ? Search and rescue                                                                                                   
          ? Training                                                                                                            
          ? Criminal justice databases (e.g. APSIN)                                                                             
          ? Crime lab                                                                                                           
INTERIM COMMISSIONER  HOWELL explained  that assistance  is given                                                               
to  other  departments  in  the  state,  municipal,  and  federal                                                               
governments.   She  said training  is for  law enforcement,  fire                                                               
service  professionals,  and  criminal  justice  agencies.    She                                                               
defined the  Alaska Public Safety Information  Network (APSIN) as                                                               
"the  state   central  repository  of  criminal   history  record                                                               
information."  She said the  state has just one accredited, full-                                                               
service crime lab.                                                                                                              
9:09:43 AM                                                                                                                    
CO-CHAIR HANNAN  asked whether there  was any  engagement between                                                               
DPS and [the  Alaska Wing of the] Civil Air  Patrol during search                                                               
and rescue missions "this year."                                                                                                
INTERIM COMMISSIONER HOWELL deferred  to Colonel Bryan Barlow but                                                               
noted that  the department  does work  with multiple  agencies in                                                               
performing search and rescue missions.                                                                                          
9:11:19 AM                                                                                                                    
COLONEL  BRYAN   BARLOW,  Director,  Division  of   Alaska  State                                                               
Troopers,  told  Co-Chair  Hannan   he  could  gather  statistics                                                               
regarding  the  number  of rescue  operations.    Notwithstanding                                                               
that, he  said in general  the Division of Alaska  State Troopers                                                               
(AST) has worked with the Alaska  Wing of the Civil Air Patrol on                                                               
search and rescue operations over the  last year, as well as with                                                               
other groups  across Alaska.   He shared  that AST  shares hangar                                                               
space with the Alaska Wing of the Civil Air Patrol.                                                                             
9:12:49 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE MCCABE asked  about funding of the  Alaska Wing of                                                               
the Civil Air Patrol.                                                                                                           
COLONEL BARLOW  stated that AST  does not fund the  operations of                                                               
the Alaska Wing  of the Civil Air Patrol; however,  in past years                                                               
there  have  been "pass-through  funds"  designed  to assist  the                                                               
Alaska Wing of the Civil Air Patrol in its operations.                                                                          
INTERIM  COMMISSIONER   HOWELL,  in   response  to   a  follow-up                                                               
question, explained that  up until the last fiscal  year, DPS had                                                               
a budget component  for the Alaska Wing of the  Civil Air Patrol;                                                               
it  was  funded through  state  general  funds,  and it  was  the                                                               
state's contribution  of the  mission of the  Alaska Wing  of the                                                               
Civil Air Patrol.                                                                                                               
9:14:26 AM                                                                                                                    
INTERIM COMMISSIONER HOWELL returned  to the PowerPoint, to slide                                                               
4, which depicts an organizational chart.   She said there is one                                                               
deputy  commission  position  in  DPS,  and  the  following  five                                                               
divisions:   the Division of  Fire and Life Safety,  the Division                                                               
of  Statewide Services,  the Division  of  Alaska State  Troopers                                                               
(AST),  and the  Division  of Wildlife  Troopers  (AWT), and  the                                                               
Division of  Administrative Services.   The Crime Lab,  while not                                                               
its own division,  serves a unique and  specialized function, she                                                               
remarked.  She listed the three  councils housed within DPS:  the                                                               
Alaska  Police  Standards  Council  (APSC),  the  Fire  Standards                                                               
Council (FSC),  and the Council  on Domestic Violence  and Sexual                                                               
Assault  (CDVSA).   She  stated  that  in  the governor's  FY  22                                                               
budget,  there  is a  proposal  to  transfer the  Violent  Crimes                                                               
Compensation Board from the Department  of Administration to DPS,                                                               
where it was  housed many years ago.  This  would be accomplished                                                               
under  Executive Order  (EO) 120.   Currently  DPS has  budgetary                                                               
authority  that was  transferred  in the  last  fiscal year;  the                                                               
statutory  authority  will  be  transferred  via  EO  120.    She                                                               
explained the transfer was not  accomplished last year because of                                                               
the  abbreviated [in  response  to concerns  about the  pandemic]                                                               
legislative session.                                                                                                            
INTERIM  COMMISSIONER  HOWELL  related  that  DPS  comprises  871                                                               
permanent, full-time positions, about  the fifth largest in terms                                                               
of permanent, full-time positions out  of the 15 executive branch                                                               
agencies.   She  noted that  of  the 871,  approximately 419  are                                                               
state trooper  positions within  the two  trooper divisions.   In                                                               
response to Representative McCabe, she  clarified that 419 is the                                                               
number of  authorized positions; approximately 365  are currently                                                               
filled, and training is happening  currently at the Public Safety                                                               
Academy in Sitka, Alaska.                                                                                                       
9:17:20 AM                                                                                                                    
INTERIM COMMISSIONER  HOWELL moved  on to  slide 5,  "Division of                                                               
Alaska  State Troopers,"  which shows  a photo  of Colonel  Bryan                                                               
Barlow,  Director.   Slide 5  offers the  division breakdown,  as                                                               
follows [original punctuation provided]:                                                                                        
     Bureau of Highway Patrol                                                                                                   
     Search and Rescue                                                                                                          
     Statewide Drug and Alcohol Enforcement                                                                                     
     Alaska Bureau of Investigation                                                                                             
     Prisoner Transport                                                                                                         
     Judicial Services                                                                                                          
     Operations Support Bureau                                                                                                  
INTERIM  COMMISSIONER  HOWELL  noted  that  the  mission  of  the                                                               
Division  of Alaska  State  Troopers is  to  preserve the  peace,                                                               
enforce the law,  prevent and detect crime, and  protect life and                                                               
property.    She  said  the Bureau  of  Highway  Patrol  supports                                                               
highway safety  campaigns, and Search  and Rescue is  within AST.                                                               
She said  the Alaska Bureau  of Investigation  investigates major                                                               
crimes,  as well  as provides  investigative assistance  to other                                                               
agencies.   She stated that  the court services  officers, within                                                               
Judicial  Services,  transport  prisoners throughout  the  state,                                                               
provide security  for the court system,  "protect the judiciary,"                                                               
and  provide timely  service  of  legal process.    She said  the                                                               
Operations  Support  Bureau  includes the  department's  Aircraft                                                               
Section, the  academy in  Sitka, an  advanced training  unit, the                                                               
domestic  violence  and  sexual  assault  training  unit,  and  a                                                               
recruitment unit.                                                                                                               
INTERIM COMMISSIONER HOWELL displayed slide  6, which shows a map                                                               
delineating  the  four  geographic detachments  and  the  current                                                               
locations of AWT and AST posts, some of which are combined.                                                                     
9:20:45 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE DRUMMOND asked  for a description of  the zones on                                                               
the map, in particular the zone named "B."                                                                                      
INTERIM  COMMISSIONER HOWELL  deferred  the  question to  Colonel                                                               
9:21:19 AM                                                                                                                    
COLONEL BARLOW  described the four  geographic detachments:   the                                                               
"A" detachment, shown  in red, includes Southeast  Alaska and the                                                               
Kenai  Peninsula; the  "B" detachment,  [shown  in medium  blue],                                                               
includes Southcentral  Alaska and extending east  to the Canadian                                                               
border; the "C"  detachment, [shown in light  blue], includes all                                                               
Western  Alaska;  and  the "D"  detachment,  [shown  in  yellow],                                                               
includes  mainly  Interior Alaska.    Additionally,  the area  in                                                               
white at  the top  of the  map depicts  the North  Slope Borough,                                                               
which has its own police department.                                                                                            
REPRESENTATIVE  DRUMMOND pointed  out  that  the Municipality  of                                                               
Anchorage does  not get AST  service, and she observed  that that                                                               
is not indicated  on the map, where Anchorage appears  to be part                                                               
of the "A" detachment.                                                                                                          
COLONEL BARLOW  confirmed it  is true that  AST does  not provide                                                               
primary  law  enforcement  services within  the  Municipality  of                                                               
Anchorage.  That  is covered by the  Anchorage Police Department.                                                               
He  said some  areas of  the division  that are  involved in  the                                                               
Municipality   of  Anchorage   include  the   Alaska  Bureau   of                                                               
Investigation, the  Statewide Drug and Alcohol  Enforcement unit,                                                               
and  court services  officers.   He said  sometimes the  division                                                               
works on its own and  sometimes in cooperation with the Anchorage                                                               
Police Department.   He explained that the purpose of  the map is                                                               
to depict the division's primary geographic areas in the state.                                                                 
9:24:02 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE MCCABE  asked for more details  regarding the area                                                               
of Anchorage.                                                                                                                   
COLONEL BARLOW described a campus  of buildings along Tudor Road,                                                               
including DPS  headquarters, the Alaska Bureau  of Investigation,                                                               
and the Anchorage post  of AWT.  He offered a  brief history of a                                                               
more robust presence of AST  in Anchorage before expansion of the                                                               
municipality.   He noted that the  Crime Lab is just  west of the                                                               
Tudor  Road campus.   In  response  to a  follow-up question,  he                                                               
clarified the areas in which  the Anchorage Police Department and                                                               
AST are primary law enforcers.                                                                                                  
9:28:13 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE MCCARTY  said he  is from the  Chugiak/Eagle River                                                               
area   He indicated that  the president of the  Birchwood Airport                                                               
had been told the facility is  not part of APD's jurisdiction but                                                               
rather  within AST's  jurisdiction.   He asked  for more  details                                                               
regarding "Anchorage outreach."                                                                                                 
COLONEL   BARLOW  reiterated   that   while   AST  does   conduct                                                               
investigative   efforts  in   the   Municipality  of   Anchorage,                                                               
generally the border is the  municipality.  He mentioned the area                                                               
to the  north at the Matanuska  River and south to  the bottom of                                                               
Turnagain Pass and said that  "the primary law enforcement within                                                               
those areas is the Anchorage  Police Department."  In response to                                                               
a follow-up question, he said it  is not unique to Anchorage; AST                                                               
routinely works with municipalities.                                                                                            
9:32:35 AM                                                                                                                    
INTERIM  COMMISSIONER  HOWELL  directed  attention  to  slide  7,                                                               
"Division  of Alaska  Wildlife Troopers,"  which  is overseen  by                                                               
Major Steve Adams, Deputy Director.   She said the mission of the                                                               
division  is  to  protect   Alaska's  natural  resources  through                                                               
wildlife enforcement.  The division  performs statewide patrol of                                                               
commercial big  game services, commercial fisheries,  sport fish,                                                               
and sport fish guiding, game,  and trapping, as well as providing                                                               
education  regarding  boating  safety  and  safeguarding  habitat                                                               
through  reduction  of  watershed  damage  and  noncompliance  of                                                               
environmental permits.   As shown on slide 8, she  noted that AWT                                                               
is composed  of posts  in a northern  and a  southern detachment.                                                               
The detachments  provide land, air, and  water patrol enforcement                                                               
and search  and rescue  throughout the state.   The  troopers are                                                               
also  headquartered   in  Anchorage.     She  listed   the  major                                                               
components  of the  division [listed  on  slide 7]:   a  Wildlife                                                               
Investigations Unit and a Marine Section.                                                                                       
9:33:52 AM                                                                                                                    
CO-CHAIR HANNAN remarked  that in 2020, in the City  of Haines, a                                                               
wildlife trooper had to kill 36  grizzly bears in defense of life                                                               
and  property; the  typical  number  annually is  12.   She  said                                                               
people in  Haines were  attacked by  grizzlies, and  she compared                                                               
the situation to  a horror film.  She said  she had contacted the                                                               
commission of  the Alaska Department  of Fish & Game  (ADF&G) and                                                               
was not satisfied with the department's  view that "it was just a                                                               
human-caused interaction."  She asked  whether there is a "pre-op                                                               
analysis"  available  to  wildlife   troopers  to  interact  with                                                               
"managed agencies of game."                                                                                                     
9:35:51 AM                                                                                                                    
MAJOR STEVEN  ADAMS, Deputy  Director, Alaska  Wildlife Troopers,                                                               
Department of  Public Safety, acknowledged  that [2020  had been]                                                               
an unprecedented  year for human/bear encounters  in Haines, many                                                               
of which were  addressed by the one AWT  officer stationed there,                                                               
and many  of which  were addressed by  the Haines  Borough Police                                                               
Department.    He  offered   his  understanding  that  everybody,                                                               
including a local  ADF&G biologist, worked well  together to deal                                                               
with the  issue.   He said  he thinks ADF&G  was correct  in that                                                               
much  of  the  bear/human  interactions were  human  caused,  for                                                               
example, leaving trash  accessible.  He said he  could provide an                                                               
analysis of how  many bears there had been and  what the cause of                                                               
human interaction was.                                                                                                          
CO-CHAIR HANNAN  clarified her question  is whether  the wildlife                                                               
trooper has the ability to  participate in management discussions                                                               
with ADF&G in order to avoid a repeat situation in 2021.                                                                        
MAJOR  ADAMS  responded  that  it  is common  for  all  of  AWT's                                                               
troopers to  work closely with ADF&G's  local wildlife biologists                                                               
to investigate, as well as to educate the public.                                                                               
9:39:11 AM                                                                                                                    
INTERIM COMMISSIONER HOWELL returned  to the PowerPoint, to slide                                                               
9, "Division of  Fire and Life Safety."  She  said the division's                                                               
mission is  "to prevent the loss  of life and property  from fire                                                               
and explosion."  She said the  Richard Boothby is the director of                                                               
the division and  also the state fire marshal.   She related that                                                               
deputy fire marshals  aid in the enforcement of  all laws related                                                               
to fire  prevention and protection and  conduct investigations of                                                               
fires resulting  from crime.   The division has  jurisdiction for                                                               
fire code  enforcement and building  review authority,  except in                                                               
communities that have received deferrals.   She said the Training                                                               
and  Education  Bureau provides  fire  training  and public  fire                                                               
education services  to the Alaska service  professionals, as well                                                               
as to  the public.   Within  that bureau is  the Office  of Rural                                                               
Fire  Protection,  which  specializes in  training  and  response                                                               
preparedness  services to  firefighters and  emergency responders                                                               
in rural Alaska.  She noted  that within the division, the Alaska                                                               
Fire  Standards  Council  established  fire  standards  for  fire                                                               
services   personnel   and   curriculum  requirements   for   the                                                               
certification  of training  programs  in  support of  legislative                                                               
findings under AS 18.70.320.                                                                                                    
MS.  HOWELL  moved  on  to   slide  10,  "Division  of  Statewide                                                               
Services."    She  said  the   division  provides  technical  and                                                               
specialized services to other divisions  of the department, local                                                               
and  state  law  enforcement,  and  the public.    She  said  the                                                               
division director  is Kathryn Monfreda.   The  division comprises                                                               
the   Criminal  Records   and  Identification   Bureau  and   the                                                               
Information  Technology  Section.   Ms.  Howell  stated that  the                                                               
division    covers   many    of   the    department's   statutory                                                               
responsibilities,    which   include    maintaining   centralized                                                               
information pertaining to state  criminal history records through                                                               
the  Safety   Information  network;  finger  prints   via  Alaska                                                               
Biometric Identification System; and  administering the state Sex                                                               
Offender and Child Kidnapper Registration  program.  Further, the                                                               
division administers the state  Concealed Handgun Permit program;                                                               
conducts Security  Guard/Process Server Licensing;  and collects,                                                               
tabulates,  reports,   and  publishes  the  uniform   crime  data                                                               
submitted by local law enforcement  agencies, then submitting the                                                               
information  to the  Federal Bureau  of  Investigation (FBI)  for                                                               
inclusion in national crime statistic data.                                                                                     
9:43:03 AM                                                                                                                    
CO-CHAIR HANNAN  offered her understanding that  Alaska no longer                                                               
required    concealed   handgun    permits.       She   requested                                                               
INTERIM COMMISSIONER  HOWELL confirmed Alaska does  not a require                                                               
concealed handgun  permit; however,  it does  run the  program to                                                               
provide  reciprocity  with  other   states  that  recognize  that                                                               
9:44:12 AM                                                                                                                    
KATHRYN  MONFREDA,  Director,  Division  of  Statewide  Services,                                                               
Department  of Public  Safety, proffered  that another  reason to                                                               
maintain the  concealed handgun  permit program  is to  allow for                                                               
those who wish to carry a concealed weapon in a federal park.                                                                   
9:44:51 AM                                                                                                                    
INTERIM   COMMISSIONER   HOWELL   noted  that   the   Information                                                               
Technology Section  of the division provides  programming support                                                               
for all  the criminal justice  systems administered by DPS.   She                                                               
then directed attention to slide  11, "Scientific Crime Detection                                                               
Lab."  She  said David Kanaris oversees the  lab, which provides:                                                               
statewide forensic services for  law enforcement agencies; expert                                                               
court  testimony  on lab  results;  training  to law  enforcement                                                               
officer  on  proper  collection   of  evidence  and  preservation                                                               
techniques; and  administration of  the statewide  breath alcohol                                                               
testing program.                                                                                                                
INTERIM  COMMISSIONER  HOWELL  showed   slide  12,  "Division  of                                                               
Administrative  Services."    The  division  is  responsible  for                                                               
providing  centralized  administrative  support for  DPS  in  the                                                               
following  areas:    the Finance  Section;  the  Budget  Section;                                                               
Grants Management; Procurement; and  Supply Management.  She said                                                               
the division is unique in that  it also manages the rural trooper                                                               
housing program.   She  said DPS currently  has 60  housing units                                                               
located in 18 rural communities  where housing is scarce.  Having                                                               
good  housing  available  for  troopers  and  their  families  is                                                               
critical in terms of retention of staff recruited.                                                                              
9:47:46 AM                                                                                                                    
INTERIM  COMMISSIONER  HOWELL  moved  on to  slide  13,  "Village                                                               
Public Safety  Officer Program," which read  as follows [original                                                               
punctuation provided, with some formatting changes]:                                                                            
     $11,905.4 awarded                                                                                                          
     10 Grantees                                                                                                                
     54 VPSO as of 2/16/2021                                                                                                    
     49 Villages served (5 communities have 2 VPSOs)                                                                            
     Grants administration v operational oversight                                                                              
INTERIM   COMMISSIONER  HOWELL   said  providing   public  safety                                                               
services  at the  local level  can be  accomplished by  providing                                                               
grant funding  to nonprofit regional corporations,  Alaska Native                                                               
organizations, and  municipalities to hire, train,  and supervise                                                               
village  public safety  officers  (VPSOs)  within their  regions.                                                               
She  talked  about  the  program   oversight  being  provided  by                                                               
individual  detachments   within  each   region  rather   than  a                                                               
centralized oversight  from Anchorage; the  Grants Administration                                                               
Unit within  the Division of Administrative  Services administers                                                               
the  grant.     Separating  the  financial   component  from  the                                                               
operational support has led to  improvement in how the program is                                                               
managed across the state, she said.                                                                                             
9:49:50 AM                                                                                                                    
CO-CHAIR SCHRAGE  asked whether there were  regional corporations                                                               
"or otherwise" that put in grant applications.                                                                                  
INTERIM COMMISSIONER  HOWELL offered  her understanding  that the                                                               
department has  not declined any  eligible organization  that has                                                               
submitted  an application.   She  deferred to  Elizabeth Dunayski                                                               
for further comment.                                                                                                            
9:50:53 AM                                                                                                                    
ELIZABETH   DUNAYSKI,   Director,  Division   of   Administrative                                                               
Services,  Department of  Public  Safety, said  the division  has                                                               
dealt with  the 10  grantees for  a number of  years and  has not                                                               
received additional applications  for the program.   She said she                                                               
understood   there   was   legislation   currently   before   the                                                               
legislature that could  "expand that."  In response  to a follow-                                                               
up question  from Co-Chair  Schrage, she  confirmed that  all the                                                               
VPSOs are "employees of the grantees."                                                                                          
9:51:56 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE DRUMMOND noted that  the total grant cost averages                                                               
over $220,000  per VPSO.  She  said she knows VPSOs  are not paid                                                               
"anywhere near that amount"; therefore,  she asked, "So, where is                                                               
all this  money going?"   She said this concerns  her, especially                                                               
since there are not enough VPSOs serving communities.                                                                           
MS. DUNAYSKI explained  that in addition to  employing VPSOs, the                                                               
money is  spent on equipping  them with vehicles,  snow machines,                                                               
equipment,  computers, all  of which  are costly.   The  funds go                                                               
also to employing a coordinator for  each region.  In response to                                                               
a  follow-up comment  made by  Representative Drummond,  she said                                                               
the division could get into  more detail in a future presentation                                                               
if the committee  were to outline what information  it would like                                                               
to be given.                                                                                                                    
9:53:53 AM                                                                                                                    
INTERIM COMMISSIONER HOWELL moved on  to slide 14, "Alaska Police                                                               
Standards Council."  She said the  director is Bob Griffith.  The                                                               
Alaska  Police  Standards  Council (APSC)  is  established  under                                                               
statute and  comprises 13 members,  11 of which are  appointed by                                                               
the  governor.   She said  the responsibilities  of APSC  are to:                                                               
determine   certification   eligibility  for   police   officers,                                                               
probation  and parole  officers, and  correction officers;  issue                                                               
appropriate levels  of certification  to those who  qualify; make                                                               
the  decision  whether  to  revoke   certification  in  cases  of                                                               
misconduct  by  an  officer;   monitor  compliance  with  current                                                               
regulation  and legislation;  develop,  monitor,  and revise  law                                                               
enforcement  training and  training  requirements; assist  police                                                               
academies and departments for  academy training; fund specialized                                                               
advanced training  for departments; and provide  smaller agencies                                                               
across  Alaska   with  assistance  in   obtaining  pre-employment                                                               
polygraph and psychological testing for officers.                                                                               
9:55:16 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE MCCABE asked for  information regarding the makeup                                                               
of APSC.  Specifically, he  questioned whether public input would                                                               
be forthcoming from  the public positions on the  council when he                                                               
knows those positions are filled by retired police officers.                                                                    
INTERIM COMMISSIONER HOWELL deferred to Mr. Griffiths.                                                                          
9:56:19 AM                                                                                                                    
ROBERT  GRIFFITHS, Executive  Director,  Alaska Police  Standards                                                               
Council, Department of Public Safety,  said while it is true that                                                               
the  majority of  the four  public seats  are filled  with people                                                               
with  prior   law  enforcement  experience,  those   members  are                                                               
civilians,  who  were  appointed  after  expressing  interest  in                                                               
representing the  profession and the  public on the council.   He                                                               
noted  that there  is a  longstanding  member who  is a  victims'                                                               
advocate; she serves as co-chair on the council.                                                                                
9:57:21 AM                                                                                                                    
INTERIM  COMMISSIONER  HOWELL  directed attention  to  slide  15,                                                               
"Council of Domestic  Violence and Sexual Assault,"  and she said                                                               
the  executive director  is Diane  Casto.   She relayed  that the                                                               
council comprises nine members, four  of which are public members                                                               
appointed by the governor, and one  of which must be from a rural                                                               
area.    She said  the  purpose  of  the  council is  to  provide                                                               
planning  and coordination  of services  to  victims of  domestic                                                               
violence  or  sexual   assault  or  to  their   families,  or  to                                                               
perpetrators  of  domestic violence  or  sexual  assault, and  to                                                               
provide  for crisis  intervention and  prevention programs.   She                                                               
said  the council  provides a  tremendous service  to Alaska  and                                                               
survivors of  domestic violence  and sexual  assault.   She noted                                                               
that the  functions of the  council are  listed on the  slide, as                                                               
follows [original punctuation provided]:                                                                                        
      ?Fund and support shelters, child advocacy centers,                                                                       
     and batterers' intervention programs                                                                                       
        ?Data collection for domestic violence & sexual                                                                         
     assault in Alaska                                                                                                          
     ?Technical assistance, best practices, and training in                                                                     
     DVSA response and services                                                                                                 
9:58:31 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE MCCARTY  expressed gratitude for the  council.  He                                                               
asked  about  the numbers,  in  terms  of domestic  violence  and                                                               
sexual assault.                                                                                                                 
9:59:25 AM                                                                                                                    
DIANE  CASTO, Executive  Director, Council  of Domestic  Violence                                                               
and Sexual  Assault, Department  of Public  Safety, said  part of                                                               
the problem in  some of the available data is  "we compare apples                                                               
to  oranges and  not  always  apples to  apples."    She gave  an                                                               
example  of the  sex offense  felony report,  which has  reported                                                               
cases of  sexual assault, "not  actual numbers."  She  said based                                                               
on the data that is available,  the numbers "have not changed too                                                               
much."  She  talked about the interest in looking  at the numbers                                                               
during the  pandemic; there  have been  increases in  the numbers                                                               
reported on the national level.   She said there are a variety of                                                               
ways and angles to look at data,  and she said she would be happy                                                               
to share them with [Representative McCarty].                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE MCCARTY said he is interested in seeing the data.                                                                
MS.  CASTO  mentioned annual  reports  and  said the  council  is                                                               
working on  the fiscal  year 2020  (FY 20)  report.   The reports                                                               
include service  data.   She remarked that  every five  years the                                                               
Alaska  Victimization survey  is  conducted  in partnership  with                                                               
University  of Alaska  Anchorage (UAA)  Justice Center;  the 2020                                                               
numbers will  be available  late spring  to early  summer [2021].                                                               
She  highlighted that  the reports  contain direct  feedback from                                                               
victims.  She  said she would be sure to  get this information to                                                               
the committee.                                                                                                                  
10:03:04 AM                                                                                                                   
INTERIM COMMISSIONER HOWELL concluded the presentation.                                                                         
CO-CHAIR SCHRAGE thanked everyone.                                                                                              
10:03:35 AM                                                                                                                   
There being no  further business before the  committee, the House                                                               
Community  and Regional  Affairs Standing  Committee meeting  was                                                               
adjourned at 10:04 a.m.                                                                                                         

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
(H)CRA DPS Overview 3.2 Distributed.pdf HCRA 3/2/2021 8:00:00 AM
DPS Overview
H-Community and Regional Affairs - Corrections Overview 03-02-2021.pdf HCRA 3/2/2021 8:00:00 AM
Department Overview