Legislature(2009 - 2010)CAPITOL 106

03/23/2009 08:00 AM EDUCATION


Download Mp3. <- Right click and save file as

* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
*+ HB 184 DEBT AUTHORIZATION FOR UNIVERSITY TELECONFERENCED
Heard & Held
+ Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled TELECONFERENCED
+= HB 137 COMPACT: EDUCATION OF MILITARY CHILDREN TELECONFERENCED
Moved Out of Committee
                    ALASKA STATE LEGISLATURE                                                                                  
               HOUSE EDUCATION STANDING COMMITTEE                                                                             
                         March 23, 2009                                                                                         
                           8:03 a.m.                                                                                            
MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Representative Paul Seaton, Chair                                                                                               
Representative Cathy Engstrom Munoz, Vice Chair                                                                                 
Representative Wes Keller                                                                                                       
Representative Peggy Wilson                                                                                                     
Representative Robert L. "Bob" Buch                                                                                             
Representative Berta Gardner                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Representative Bryce Edgmon                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                              
HOUSE BILL NO. 137                                                                                                              
"An  Act  relating  to  an   interstate  compact  on  educational                                                               
opportunity  for  military children;  amending  Rules  4 and  24,                                                               
Alaska Rules of  Civil Procedure; and providing  for an effective                                                               
date."                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
     - MOVED HB 137 OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 184                                                                                                              
"An Act relating to the debt authorization of the University of                                                                 
Alaska."                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
     - HEARD AND HELD                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
PREVIOUS COMMITTEE ACTION                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
BILL: HB 137                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE: COMPACT: EDUCATION OF MILITARY CHILDREN                                                                            
SPONSOR(s): REPRESENTATIVE(s) COGHILL                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
02/16/09       (H)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
02/16/09       (H)       EDC, JUD, FIN                                                                                          
03/20/09       (H)       EDC AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
03/20/09       (H)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
03/20/09       (H)       MINUTE(EDC)                                                                                            
03/23/09       (H)       EDC AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
BILL: HB 184                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE: DEBT AUTHORIZATION FOR UNIVERSITY                                                                                  
SPONSOR(s): REPRESENTATIVE(s) KELLY                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
03/12/09       (H)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
03/12/09       (H)       EDC, FIN                                                                                               
03/23/09       (H)       EDC AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
WITNESS REGISTER                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
LARRY LEDOUX, Commissioner                                                                                                      
Department of Education and Early Development (EED)                                                                             
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in support of HB 137.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
EDDY JEANS, Director                                                                                                            
School Finance                                                                                                                  
Department of Education and Early Development (EED)                                                                             
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in support of HB 137.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
DEREK MILLER, Staff                                                                                                             
Representative Mike Kelly                                                                                                       
Alaska State Legislature                                                                                                        
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Introduced HB 184 on behalf of                                                                           
Representative Kelly, prime sponsor.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE MIKE KELLY                                                                                                       
Alaska State Legislature                                                                                                        
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Spoke as the prime sponsor of HB 184.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MYRON DOSCH, CPA, Controller                                                                                                    
University of Alaska                                                                                                            
Fairbanks, Alaska                                                                                                               
POSITION STATEMENT:  During hearing of HB 184, answered                                                                       
questions.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
ACTION NARRATIVE                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
8:03:50 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR PAUL  SEATON called the House  Education Standing Committee                                                             
meeting to  order at 8:03  a.m.  Representatives  Seaton, Keller,                                                               
Munoz,  Wilson, Gardner,  and Buch  were present  at the  call to                                                               
order.                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
HB 137-COMPACT: EDUCATION OF MILITARY CHILDREN                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
8:04:26 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEATON announced that the  first order of business would be                                                               
HOUSE BILL NO. 137, "An Act  relating to an interstate compact on                                                               
educational opportunity  for military children; amending  Rules 4                                                               
and 24,  Alaska Rules  of Civil Procedure;  and providing  for an                                                               
effective date."                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
8:04:52 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEATON  asked if there  was further public testimony  on HB
137.  There being none, public testimony remained closed.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
8:05:02 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
LARRY  LEDOUX, Commissioner,  Department of  Education and  Early                                                               
Development (EED), related that his  support for HB 137 is driven                                                               
by 30  years worth  of experiences working  in a  school district                                                               
with a substantial military population.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
8:05:40 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
EDDY  JEANS, Director,  School Finance,  Department of  Education                                                               
and Early  Development (EED), related his  understanding that the                                                               
Anchorage   School  District   supports  HB   137.     Mr.  Jeans                                                               
highlighted that the  fiscal note for HB 137 is  for $22,300.  He                                                               
explained  that   the  interstate  compact  requires   an  annual                                                               
membership fee.   The fee is $1 per military  child in the state.                                                               
Alaska  has  approximately  16,200   students  who  are  military                                                               
dependents.   The remaining $6,100  would be for  travel expenses                                                               
for the mini  cabinet in Alaska that  oversees the implementation                                                               
of the  compact.  The  department, he related, would  advise that                                                               
the  cabinet  consist   of  the  commissioner  of   EED  and  the                                                               
superintendents of the Anchorage  and Fairbanks School Districts.                                                               
The department  would also recommend  that a state  legislator be                                                               
appointed to the  council as well as the military  advisor who is                                                               
currently appointed  to EED.   Mr.  Jeans reminded  the committee                                                               
that the interstate  compact is a compact  between state agencies                                                               
and  governments.   He  explained  that  Section 1  outlines  the                                                               
enactment of  the compact at the  state level.  Article  II, page                                                               
2, specifies the definitions the  compact will use.  Article III,                                                               
the  applicability  provision, outlines  who  is  covered by  the                                                               
compact,  which  is  basically  all  of  the  military  families.                                                               
Article  IV, Educational  Records and  Enrollment, specifies  the                                                               
timelines for record receipt.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
8:09:03 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. JEANS informed the committee  that although Alaska is already                                                               
performing 95 percent  of what is included in  the compact, there                                                               
are a few  areas in the compact that are  different than existing                                                               
state law.  For example,  existing state immunization records are                                                               
required  to be  provided prior  to  a child  attending a  public                                                               
school.   However,  HB  137  allows families  up  to  30 days  to                                                               
produce  immunization  records.    The  state  currently  has  an                                                               
agreement  with  the Department  of  Health  and Social  Services                                                               
(DHSS)  that  provides  homeless  children  30  days  to  produce                                                               
immunization  records  as  well.    Another  difference  is  that                                                               
existing state  law has a  waiting period, 90 days,  for students                                                               
wishing  to  participate  in school  athletic  activities.    The                                                               
[compact]  includes a  waiver provision  for which  districts can                                                               
apply.   Through the waiver,  military students would  be allowed                                                               
to  participate in  school athletic  activities immediately.   In                                                               
response to Chair  Seaton, Mr. Jeans relayed  that the [athletic]                                                               
associations don't have any objections to that.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
8:10:42 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GARDNER,  referring to  subsection (c)  of Article                                                               
III, surmised that  there is no prohibition  against applying the                                                               
compact to those who aren't otherwise defined.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
MR.  JEANS  stated  his  agreement.     In  further  response  to                                                               
Representative   Gardner,  related   his  belief   that  military                                                               
families   likely  have   more   readily   available  access   to                                                               
immunization records.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
8:12:02 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  GARDNER   related  her  understanding   that  the                                                               
existing prohibition  against students being allowed  mobility in                                                               
terms  of athletics  is  an effort  to  discourage students  from                                                               
moving simply because of athletics.   Representative Gardner said                                                               
that  she  would have  many  of  these  provisions apply  to  all                                                               
students, save the athletic provision.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
COMMISSIONER LEDOUX  noted his agreement that  generally transfer                                                               
rules are  in place  to prevent recruiting  of students  for high                                                               
school athletic teams.   He commented that serving  four years on                                                               
the State Athletic Board has  illustrated to him that there can't                                                               
be enough rules to stop the aforementioned.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
8:13:53 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. JEANS,  continuing his review of  differences between current                                                               
state  practices and  the proposed  compact,  explained that  the                                                               
compact specifies  that military students  don't have to  wait to                                                               
be placed  in advanced classes.   In fact, military  students who                                                               
are said to have taken  advanced placement courses at their prior                                                               
school will be  placed immediately in the receiving  school.  The                                                               
other  difference  is  that  the  compact  specifies  that  those                                                               
students  who have  passed a  High  School Graduation  Qualifying                                                               
Exam (HSGQE) in another state  would be exempt from the receiving                                                               
state's test.  Furthermore, those  military students who are high                                                               
school seniors would be exempt  from the receiving state's HSGQE.                                                               
He  noted   that  the  aforementioned   is  already   in  [EED's]                                                               
regulation.  In  response to Chair Seaton, Mr.  Jeans related his                                                               
understanding that the compact  wouldn't require athletic tryouts                                                               
to be  redone when a  military student  arrives.  The  premise is                                                               
that the  student would be accepted  to the athletic team  or the                                                               
advanced placement course, if space  is available.  If a position                                                               
became  available at  a later  date,  students would  be able  to                                                               
apply for the open position.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
8:18:22 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
COMMISSIONER  LEDOUX  noted  that  most  schools  have  protocols                                                               
established to address transferring  students and acceptance onto                                                               
athletic teams.   The  [compact] doesn't  guarantee a  spot above                                                               
other students.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
8:19:04 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE MUNOZ asked if  military students entering schools                                                               
in Alaska have  been hindered by current regulations.   She noted                                                               
her support for HB 137.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
COMMISSIONER LEDOUX provided an example  of a student who arrived                                                               
five  days prior  to graduation  at the  student's prior  school.                                                               
The sending  district wouldn't grant  credit to the  student, and                                                               
therefore the student faced not  graduating.  Commissioner LeDoux                                                               
said that  he chose  to offer  credit for  all of  that student's                                                               
classes.      "That   shouldn't  have   occurred,"   he   opined.                                                               
Commissioner  LeDoux characterized  HB  137 as  a  law of  common                                                               
sense.  In fact, most Alaska  schools follow the protocols in the                                                               
proposed  compact.   Therefore, he  said he  viewed HB  137 as  a                                                               
statement of  what Alaska wants other  states to do in  regard to                                                               
military youth.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
8:21:30 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE WILSON suggested that perhaps  there was a lack of                                                               
communication between  the family of  the student who  moved five                                                               
days prior to graduation and the  school.  She questioned why the                                                               
parents wouldn't  have requested that  the student be  allowed to                                                               
take the final exams prior to moving.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
COMMISSIONER LEDOUX  said that  the school  knew exactly  what it                                                               
was doing  when it refused the  student credit.  He  then related                                                               
that  the stress  on military  families when  they move  is real.                                                               
Furthermore, sometimes  the bureaucracy of a  school becomes more                                                               
important than the  student.  This proposed  legislation places a                                                               
higher value on the student.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
8:22:56 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE WILSON  moved to  report HB  137 out  of committee                                                               
with  individual  recommendations  and  the  accompanying  fiscal                                                               
notes.  There being no objection, it was so ordered.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
HB 184-DEBT AUTHORIZATION FOR UNIVERSITY                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
8:23:48 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEATON announced that the  final order of business would be                                                               
HOUSE BILL  NO. 184, "An  Act relating to the  debt authorization                                                               
of the University of Alaska."                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
8:24:26 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
DEREK  MILLER, Staff,  Representative  Mike  Kelly, Alaska  State                                                               
Legislature,  presented HB  184,  paraphrasing  from the  sponsor                                                               
statement,   which   read   as  follows   [original   punctuation                                                               
provided]:                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     HB  184  adjusts the  current  bond  debt cap  for  the                                                                    
     University  of Alaska  to reflect  today's construction                                                                    
     prices.   Current Alaska Statute allows  the University                                                                    
     of Alaska  to borrow money,  issue debt, or  enter into                                                                    
     long-term obligations  for the purchase  of facilities,                                                                    
     goods, or services without having  to provide notice to                                                                    
     the  legislature as  long as  the  annual debt  service                                                                    
     payment doesn't exceed  $1.0 million.  HB  184 bumps up                                                                    
     the threshold to $2.5 million.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
     The current  bond debt  cap limit  of $1.0  million was                                                                    
     originally issued in 1990.   At that time, $1.0 million                                                                    
     in  annual debt  service was  the cost  of financing  a                                                                    
     $15.0  million capital  project.   Taking into  account                                                                    
     construction  inflation  in  Alaska,  a  $15.0  million                                                                    
     capital project  build in 1990  would cost  about $40.0                                                                    
     million today.   Annual debt  service on  $40.0 million                                                                    
     is $2.5  million assuming  a 4.5%  interest rate  and a                                                                    
     25-year straight line amortization.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
     The University has operated a  viable debt program over                                                                    
     the last  18 years.   It has issued 14  general revenue                                                                    
     bonds plus other financing  arrangements that have been                                                                    
     critical  in  securing  funding for  capital  projects.                                                                    
     The University  has never suffered a  rating downgrade.                                                                    
     In  fact, in  December 2007,  Moody's Investor  Service                                                                    
     upgraded  the University  credit  rating to  Aa3.   The                                                                    
     University continues  to monitor its debt  capacity and                                                                    
     compliance with tax exempt  bond covenants.  Currently,                                                                    
     the  amount  of  debt   service  outstanding  is  $11.2                                                                    
     million.  This is less  than half the Board of Regents'                                                                    
     policy limit  of 5% of  unrestricted revenues  which is                                                                    
     $26.2 million for  FY08.  This equates  to $127 million                                                                    
     in outstanding debt  with the ability to  issue a total                                                                    
     of $317 million in debt.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
     By  increasing the  bond debt  cap approval  level, the                                                                    
     administrative  burden of  compliance with  the statute                                                                    
     for smaller bond  issues would be reduced  for both the                                                                    
     legislature  and the  University.   At  the same  time,                                                                    
     legislative  oversight  would  be retained  for  larger                                                                    
     financings.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     I would appreciate your support for HB 184.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
8:26:48 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE BUCH asked if this cap would allow the                                                                           
university's participation at the maximum level the university                                                                  
is seeking.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MR. MILLER explained that HB 184 merely reflects the changing                                                                   
construction environment.  If the legislature were to authorize                                                                 
receipt authority for  a couple of the current  projects that the                                                               
university is proposing, this legislation would impact that.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
8:27:56 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  WILSON  said  that  she  would  view  HB  184  as                                                               
problematic if it  creates a tuition increase.  She  asked if the                                                               
sponsor   would   object   to   an   amendment   specifying   the                                                               
aforementioned wouldn't happen.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  MIKE KELLY,  Alaska State  Legislature, clarified                                                               
that the  university oversight  remains because  no funds  can be                                                               
expended  without   receipt  authority,  which   the  legislature                                                               
approves.   "This [proposed legislation]  merely makes  the level                                                               
of bonding to  accomplish the same chores current," he  said.  He                                                               
then pointed out that state  funds to the university have reduced                                                               
from  60 percent  to 40  percent.   In  answer to  Representative                                                               
Wilson, Representative Kelly acknowledged  that a project that HB
184 would  support could result in  an increase in tuition.   For                                                               
example, at  the Fairbanks  campus students  agreed to  a tuition                                                               
increase in  order to fund  a recreation center.   Representative                                                               
Kelly related  his opposition to  an amendment that  would hinder                                                               
the Board of  Regents' management of tuition rates  as related to                                                               
the proposed debt cap.   The legislation wouldn't cause/trigger a                                                               
tuition increase  because HB 184 strictly  permits the university                                                               
to bond for smaller amounts.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
8:31:42 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE WILSON  inquired as to how  many tuition increases                                                               
the university system has experienced.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
MR. MILLER answered  that since 2003 there has been  a 10 percent                                                               
increase in  tuition for four years  in a row.   He recalled that                                                               
after those four  years, tuition increased by  the higher tuition                                                               
price index plus a bit more, but not quite 10 percent.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  WILSON   expressed  concern  with   such  tuition                                                               
increases.   She then  stressed that  the university  must review                                                               
ways in which it can avoid tuition increases.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
8:33:11 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEATON asked if the  Fairbanks recreation facility impacted                                                               
the  tuition across  the university  system  or was  it merely  a                                                               
surcharge at the Fairbanks campus.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KELLY  responded that it was  a specific surcharge                                                               
for Fairbanks students.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
8:33:41 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  GARDNER  commented that  she  was  struck by  the                                                               
thinness  of the  committee packet  for  HB 184.   She  expressed                                                               
interest in receiving backup.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
MR. MILLER said  that although he doesn't have a  letter from the                                                               
university specifically,  the Controller  from the  University of                                                               
Alaska is available online.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
8:34:12 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE   MUNOZ  related   her   understanding  that   the                                                               
university's  opportunity to  issue debt  is about  $317 million,                                                               
which won't  change even with  changing the cap.   Therefore, she                                                               
opined that changing the cap wouldn't affect tuition rates.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MR.  MILLER  explained  that  the   total  outstanding  debt  the                                                               
university  is  authorized  to  issue  is set  by  the  Board  of                                                               
Regents.    Currently,  that  limit   is  set  at  5  percent  of                                                               
unrestricted revenue.   The aforementioned  is separate  from the                                                               
university's annual  debt service.   He pointed  out that  if the                                                               
university  needs  to bond  above  the  specified threshold,  the                                                               
university  will seek  that  funding from  the  legislature.   In                                                               
further response  to Representative  Munoz, Mr.  Miller confirmed                                                               
that changing the cap doesn't  affect the university's ability to                                                               
bond that $317 million.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
8:35:57 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BUCH inquired  as  to whether  students have  any                                                               
involvement in determining tuition costs.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
MR.  MILLER highlighted  that  the Board  of  Regents includes  a                                                               
voting student representative on  the board, which provides input                                                               
at that level.   However, the decision is ultimately  that of the                                                               
Board  of  Regents.    With   regard  to  the  Fairbanks  Student                                                               
Recreation  Center,  the  Fairbanks students  actually  voted  to                                                               
build that facility and impose  a surcharge.  In further response                                                               
to Representative  Buch, Mr. Miller  confirmed that  students who                                                               
may not  have been part of  the decision to impose  the surcharge                                                               
were faced with paying it.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
8:38:06 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE WILSON  inquired as to the  percentage of students                                                               
who  pay their  own  tuition versus  the  percentage of  students                                                               
whose parents pay their tuition.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
MR. MILLER said  it would be difficult to  establish that number,                                                               
but offered to provide it if he could.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
8:39:10 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  SEATON   remarked  that  such   information  may   not  be                                                               
available, and in fact may be confidential.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
8:40:40 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEATON,  referring to page 1,  lines 9-12 of HB  184, asked                                                               
if the  language means that  the university doesn't have  to come                                                               
before the  legislature unless the  amount being sought  is above                                                               
the $2.5 million financing debt cap.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
8:41:55 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
The committee took an at-ease from 8:41 a.m. to 8:43 a.m.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
8:43:02 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KELLY  related his understanding that  the bonding                                                               
is separate from the approval.   Therefore, the receipt authority                                                               
is generated by  the legislative action.  The  bill merely states                                                               
that if the receipt authority is  from bonds, the approval is not                                                               
required for  the act  of bonding itself.   The  language doesn't                                                               
affect  the power  of the  legislature over  projects; rather  it                                                               
says  that   once  the  legislature   approves  a   project,  the                                                               
university has the ability to bond  at a higher level than before                                                               
without coming before the legislature.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEATON  pointed out that the  discussion seems to be  as if                                                               
the legislature  has to  approve the  projects if  the university                                                               
totally bonds for  it and pays for it itself.   However, existing                                                               
language on  page 1, lines  9-13, says that the  legislature only                                                               
has to approve  the university's receipt authority  if the amount                                                               
is more  than the service  debt of  $2.5 million.   Therefore, he                                                               
requested  the  sponsor  have   Legislative  Legal  and  Research                                                               
Services check the meaning of this language.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KELLY agreed to do so.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
8:46:31 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MYRON DOSCH,  CPA, Controller, University  of Alaska,  offered to                                                               
answer any questions.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
8:47:02 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEATON  asked if the  university has to  obtain legislative                                                               
approval for  bonded projects that  are below the  existing limit                                                               
of $1 million or the proposed $2.5 million limit.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
MR. DOSCH  answered that  the university can  issue debt  if it's                                                               
below  the  specified  limit.   The  legislature  approves  those                                                               
projects through the receipt authority.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
8:48:10 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEATON posed an example  in which the university decides to                                                               
issue  debt  for a  project  rather  than  go through  a  capital                                                               
project request.   He asked  if the university  can do so  if the                                                               
anticipated debt service would be less than $2.5 million.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
MR. DOSCH replied yes.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
8:49:01 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  WILSON asked  if the  university could  decide to                                                               
bond a project the legislature denied.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
MR. DOSCH  replied no,  and explained  that the  university would                                                               
still need the receipt authority to  issue debt if it's a capital                                                               
project.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
8:49:43 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR.   DOSCH,  in   response  to   Chair  Seaton,   confirmed  the                                                               
university's support for HB 184.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
8:50:31 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KELLY offered to  obtain a position statement from                                                               
the university.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
8:51:00 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE   MUNOZ   suggested  that   including   clarifying                                                               
language  referring to  "projects greater  than $2.5  million" on                                                               
page 1, lines 9-11, would be helpful.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KELLY  related  his  agreement that  HB  184  may                                                               
create an  inconsistency with existing  law.  He pledged  to have                                                               
the  legislation  scrutinized on  the  points  the committee  has                                                               
addressed.   The intent, he  said, is not to  place unforeseeable                                                               
restrictions on the university.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEATON pointed out that the  portion of HB 184 referring to                                                               
the $2.5  million limit is  addressing an annual payment  not the                                                               
cost of the project.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
8:54:27 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEATON,  upon determining  no one  else wished  to testify,                                                               
closed the  public hearing on HB  184.  He announced  that HB 184                                                               
would be held over.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
8:56:43 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEATON  discussed the  agenda of  the upcoming  meeting and                                                               
materials the committee members should review in preparation.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
9:00:46 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
ADJOURNMENT                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
There being no  further business before the  committee, the House                                                               
Education Standing Committee meeting was adjourned at 9:00 a.m.                                                                 

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
HB 184.pdf HEDC 3/23/2009 8:00:00 AM
HEDC 3/25/2009 9:00:00 AM
HB 184
HB 184 Sponsor Statement.pdf HEDC 3/23/2009 8:00:00 AM
HEDC 3/25/2009 9:00:00 AM
HB 184
HB137-EED-ESS-3-17-09.pdf HEDC 3/20/2009 8:00:00 AM
HEDC 3/23/2009 8:00:00 AM
HB 137
HB0137A.pdf HEDC 3/20/2009 8:00:00 AM
HEDC 3/23/2009 8:00:00 AM
HB 137
img-3191420-0001.pdf HEDC 3/20/2009 8:00:00 AM
HEDC 3/23/2009 8:00:00 AM
img-3191549-0001.pdf HEDC 3/20/2009 8:00:00 AM
HEDC 3/23/2009 8:00:00 AM
Sponsor statement HB 137.doc HEDC 3/20/2009 8:00:00 AM
HEDC 3/23/2009 8:00:00 AM
HB 137
Sectional HB 137.doc HEDC 3/20/2009 8:00:00 AM
HEDC 3/23/2009 8:00:00 AM
HB 137
UA Bond Debt Cap 1990 Statute.pdf HEDC 3/23/2009 8:00:00 AM
HEDC 3/25/2009 9:00:00 AM