Legislature(1993 - 1994)

03/09/1993 01:35 PM FIN

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
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                     HOUSE FINANCE COMMITTEE                                   
                          MARCH 9, 1993                                        
                            1:35 P.M.                                          
                                                                               
  TAPE HFC 93 - 41, Side 1, #000 - end.                                        
  TAPE HFC 93 - 41, Side 2, #000 - end.                                        
  TAPE HFC 93 - 42, Side 1, #000 - end.                                        
  TAPE HFC 93 - 42, Side 2, #000 - #286.                                       
                                                                               
  CALL TO ORDER                                                                
                                                                               
  Co-Chair Ron Larson called the meeting of the House  Finance                 
  Committee to order at 1:35 P.M.                                              
                                                                               
  PRESENT                                                                      
                                                                               
  Co-Chair Larson               Representative Brown                           
  Co-Chair MacLean              Representative Foster                          
  Vice-Chair Hanley             Representative Grussendorf                     
  Representative Hoffman        Representative Martin                          
  Representative Navarre        Representative Parnell                         
  Representative Therriault                                                    
                                                                               
  ALSO PRESENT                                                                 
                                                                               
  Representative  Carl  Moses;   Representative  Fran   Ulmer;                 
  Representative  Gary  Davis; Representative  Irene Nicholia;                 
  Representative   Con   Bunde;   Representative  Ed   Willis;                 
  Representative  Cynthia  Toohey;   Molly  McCammon,  Aid  to                 
  Representative  Carl  Moses; Paul  Dick,  Juneau Operations,                 
  Income & Excise Audit Division, Department of Revenue; Bruce                 
  Geraghty, Deputy  Commissioner, Department of  Community and                 
  Regional  Affairs;  Rupe Andrews,  Capital  City Task  Force                 
  American Citizens,  American Association of  Retired Persons                 
  (AARP),  Juneau,  Alaska;   Amos  Wallace,  Juneau,  Alaska;                 
  Crystal  Smith,  Alaska  Municipal  League, Juneau,  Alaska;                 
  Margo Knuth,  Criminal Division,  Department of  Law; Marcia                 
  McKenzie, Council  on Domestic Violence  and Sexual Assault,                 
  (CDVSA), Juneau, Alaska; Sam Trivette, Director of Community                 
  Corrections, Department of Corrections.                                      
                                                                               
  SUMMARY INFORMATION                                                          
  HB 55     An Act making appropriations for the operating and                 
            loan program  expenses of state  government and to                 
            capitalize funds;  and providing for  an effective                 
            date.                                                              
  HB 56     An   Act   making  appropriations   for  operating                 
            expenses for certain programs for which  the costs                 
            are derived  from mandated  formulas or  criteria,                 
                                                                               
                                1                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
            and for  expenses for certain leases and contracts                 
            for state  services and operations;  and providing                 
            for an effective date.                                             
                                                                               
            Incorporated subcommittee recommendations  for the                 
            Department of Fish and Game  and the Department of                 
            Law.                                                               
  HB 64     An  Act  creating the  crimes  of stalking  in the                 
            first and second  degrees and providing  penalties                 
            for  their violation;  providing  a peace  officer                 
            with the authority  to arrest without a  warrant a                 
            person the peace  officer has reasonable  cause to                 
            believe has  committed stalking;  relating to  the                 
            release  before  trial  of  a  person  accused  of                 
            stalking;  and  prohibiting   the  suspension   of                 
            imposition of  sentence of  a person  convicted of                 
            stalking.                                                          
                                                                               
            HB  64   was  held   in   Committee  for   further                 
            discussion.                                                        
  HB 133    An Act  amending  the definition  of  `value'  for                 
            purposes of administration of fisheries taxes; and                 
            providing for an effective date.                                   
                                                                               
            HB  133 was reported  out of Committee  with a "do                 
  pass"          recommendation  and  a  fiscal  note  by  the                 
                 Department of Revenue dated 2/17/93.                          
  HB 66     An  Act   relating  to   municipal  property   tax                 
            exemptions for certain residences and to  property                 
            tax  equivalency  payments for  certain residents;                 
            and providing for an effective date.                               
                                                                               
            HB   66  was   held  in   Committee   for  further                 
            discussion.   It was  placed in  subcommittee with                 
            Representative MacLean  as Chair and  with members                 
            Representative    Martin     and    Representative                 
            Grussendorf.                                                       
  DEPARTMENT OF LAW                                                            
                                                                               
  The Department of Law House Finance Subcommittee was Chaired                 
  by Representative Larson with members Representative Porter,                 
  Representative     Olberg,     Representative      Davidson,                 
  Representative Navarre and Representative Barnes.                            
                                                                               
  Co-Chair  Larson  provided  the   Committee  with  handouts.                 
  [Attachment #1 & #3].   He stated that the  target reduction                 
  for the  Subcommittee was  $610,900 thousand  dollars.   The                 
  Subcommittee used  the Governor's 1994 proposed  budget from                 
                                                                               
                                2                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  which  to base  the increment/decrements.    Co-Chair Larson                 
  referenced "The Transaction Summary for  the Governor to the                 
  House" [Attachment #1].                                                      
                                                                               
  The  Subcommittee  made  four   changes  to  the  Governor's                 
  proposed budget.                                                             
                                                                               
       *    Prosecution -      reduction    -  $47.4  thousand                 
       dollar                                                                  
                                                                               
       *    Legal Services - Operations Divisions                              
            The  Governor  proposed   an  increase  of  twelve                 
            attorneys to work on natural resource issues.  The                 
            proposed increment to the Governor's budget  would                 
            be  $1.998  million  dollars.    The  Subcommittee                 
            reduced that increment by $549.9 thousand dollars.                 
                                                                               
                                                                               
       *    Exxon  Valdez  Litigation  -  reduction:    $3.462                 
            million dollars.    With  the  completion  of  the                 
            Alyeska settlement,  the Department of  Law stated                 
            they could  reduce the  request by $1.433  million                 
            dollars.  The Subcommittee recommends a  reduction                 
            of $1.5 million dollars.                                           
                                                                               
  Co-Chair  Larson   noted  the  proposed  decrement   to  the                 
  Department of  Law budget  would be  $2.473 million  dollars                 
  general funds, adding back the $50 thousand dollar increment                 
  for  the  position in  Barrow.   This  would make  the total                 
  proposed reduction - $1.197 million dollars in general funds                 
  for the FY 94 budget.                                                        
                                                                               
  The Law Subcommittee addressed the supplemental bill HB 135.                 
   The Department of Law addresses five sections.                              
                                                                               
       *    Section 8  increases the supplemental  request for                 
       $400      thousand dollars for prosecution costs.                       
                                                                               
       *    Section 9 is a request  for $6.600 million dollars                 
            in  general funds  and $2.200  million dollars  in                 
            Permanent Fund  Corporation receipts  for oil  and                 
            gas litigation.  [Attachment #2].                                  
                                                                               
       *    Section 10  requests  $280  thousand  dollars  for                 
            outside counsel to the Department  of Law in joint                 
            proceedings   with   the   Federal  Communications                 
            Commission   and   the  Alaska   Public  Utilities                 
            Commission.                                                        
                                                                               
       *    Section 11 is  a request for $35  thousand dollars                 
            for implementing the 1992 Subsistence Law.                         
                                                                               
                                                                               
                                3                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
       *    Section 12 is a request for $1.087 million dollars                 
            in judgement claims.                                               
                                                                               
  Co-Chair Larson explained that the Governor has requested an                 
  increase  of   $220.4  thousand  dollars  in   "other  fund"                 
  increments.   These  would be interagency  receipts obtained                 
  from Alaska Housing  Finance Corporation for the  Department                 
  of  Law  to   provide  legal   support.    Co-Chair   Larson                 
  recommended the increment be zeroed out.                                     
                                                                               
  Representative  Grussendorf  questioned the  $549.8 thousand                 
  dollar decrement to natural resource PCN's.  Co-Chair Larson                 
  replied,  the Governor's  budget requested twelve  full time                 
  positions  at  a  cost  of  $1.998  million  dollars.    The                 
  Subcommittee   reduced   the    recommendation   by    half.                 
  Representative Grussendorf noted his concern with inadequate                 
  protection of the State fishery  resources placing the State                 
  at a disadvantage in treaty negotiations.                                    
                                                                               
  Representative  Hoffman pointed  out that the  Department of                 
  Law has received an increase of thirty positions since 1992.                 
                                                                               
                                                                               
  Co-Chair Larson  MOVED incorporating  the Department  of Law                 
  Subcommittee   recommendations   including   the   amendment                 
  reduction  of $220.4  thousand  dollars into  HB 55.   There                 
  being NO OBJECTIONS, it was incorporated.                                    
                                                                               
  DEPARTMENT OF FISH AND GAME                                                  
                                                                               
  The Department of Fish and Game Subcommittee was Chaired  by                 
  Representative  Hanley  with  members Representative  Moses,                 
  Representative Hudson, Representative  Bunde, Representative                 
  Gail   Phillips,   Representative   Hoffman,  Representative                 
  Davidson,   Representative   Nicholia   and   Representative                 
  Grussendorf.                                                                 
                                                                               
  Representative Hanley  provided the Committee  with handouts                 
  of the  Department of  Fish and  Game Subcommittee  proposed                 
  budget closeouts.  [Attachments #4 & #5].                                    
                                                                               
  He  stated, the  FY 93  authorized general  fund amount  was                 
  $46.889 million dollars.   The FY  93 supplemental added  an                 
  additional $584.3 thousand dollars.  The Governor's proposed                 
  FY 93 is $44.256 million dollars.  The Subcommittee was able                 
  to reach a two percent reduction beyond that proposed by the                 
  Governor.   The Subcommittee  did not  have any  increments,                 
  although there were switches within the Department.                          
                                                                               
  Representative  Hanley  pointed  out  that  in  FY  92,  the                 
  Department  of  Fish  and  Game  began reducing  funds  that                 
  provided economic development  to the commercial  fisheries.                 
                                                                               
                                4                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  The goal of the Subcommittee was to increase commercial fish                 
  harvest opportunities.                                                       
                                                                               
  Representative   Hanley   referenced  Attachment   #5,  "The                 
  Transaction Summary for the Governor to the House".                          
                                                                               
       *    Commercial Fisheries total  component increase  of                 
            $333.2  thousand  dollars  increasing the  harvest                 
            opportunities by $333.2 thousand dollars.                          
                                                                               
       *    Special  Projects  decrement  of   $20.4  thousand                 
            dollars.                                                           
                                                                               
       *    Sport  Fisheries  decrement  of   $488.7  thousand                 
            dollars.                                                           
                                                                               
       *    F.R.E.D. increment of $297.4 thousand dollars.  He                 
            pointed out  that four hatcheries  had been zeroed                 
            out last  year.   This increment  would allow  the                 
            Department more time for the closure transition of                 
            those hatcheries.   Funds had  been added back  to                 
            Deer Mountain Hatchery and Crooker Creek Hatchery.                 
                                                                               
                                                                               
       *    Wildlife   Conservation   decrement   for   $318.9                 
            thousand dollars.   Fees  have been  switched from                 
            this component.                                                    
                                                                               
       *    Administration  and  Support decrement  for $131.0                 
            thousand dollars.                                                  
                                                                               
       *    Boards of  Fisheries and Game  decrement for $21.9                 
            thousand dollars.                                                  
                                                                               
       *    Advisory Committee/Regional Council  reduction for                 
            $240.5 thousand  dollars including a  reduction of                 
            regional coordinators.                                             
                                                                               
       *    Habitat decrement of $50.0 thousand dollars.                       
                                                                               
       *    Special Projects reduction from the 470 Funds from                 
            the Department of  Environmental Conservation  for                 
            $25.2 thousand dollars.                                            
                                                                               
       *    Subsistence reduction for $63.9  thousand dollars.                 
                                                                               
                                                                               
  Representative   Hanley  reiterated,   the  Fish   and  Game                 
  Subcommittee's  recommended  closeout would  be  two percent                 
  below the Governor's proposed budget  and five percent below                 
  last year.                                                                   
                                                                               
                                                                               
                                5                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  Co-Chair  MacLean  asked if  there  were any  duplication of                 
  projects  requested   in   the  capital   budget   and   the                 
  subcommittee proposals.   Representative Hanley stated there                 
  was not.                                                                     
                                                                               
  Co-Chair MacLean noted for the record that the Department of                 
  Fish  and  Game recommended  the  closure of  the Kotzebuque                 
  Office  asking that  it  be transferred  to Fairbanks.   She                 
  advised that subsistence  offices should  be located at  the                 
  regional areas and should not be moved to the urban centers.                 
                                                                               
  Representative Hoffman stressed his concern in spending less                 
  money on the management of renewable resources.  He felt the                 
  State  could benefit  in the  long run from  better resource                 
  management.                                                                  
                                                                               
  Representative Hanley MOVED  incorporating the  Subcommittee                 
  recommendations  into HB 55.   There being  NO OBJECTION, it                 
  was incorporated.                                                            
                                                                               
  (Tape Change HFC 93-41, Side 2).                                             
  HOUSE BILL 133                                                               
                                                                               
       "An Act amending the definition of `value' for purposes                 
       of administration of fisheries taxes; and providing for                 
       an effective date."                                                     
                                                                               
  MOLLY  MCCAMMON, AID  TO REPRESENTATIVE  CARL  MOSES, stated                 
  that  HB 133 is  substantially similar  to existing  law but                 
  restructures the definition of "value" used in administering                 
  fisheries taxes in order to enhance clarity.                                 
                                                                               
  The bill is identical  to Resources CSHB 448,  introduced by                 
  Representative Gail Phillips last session, with some further                 
  clarification recommended by the Division of Legal Services.                 
  The legislation has not received any known opposition.                       
                                                                               
  She pointed out, in the  past processors and fishermen  have                 
  disputed  the  definition  of  "value"  in  paying  the  raw                 
  fisheries tax and salmon  enhancement tax.  The argument  is                 
  that bonuses and delivery  costs are not part of  the actual                 
  amount paid fishermen  for their  fish.  The  interpretation                 
  leaves an  opening for processors  to pay  lower prices  for                 
  fish, and make up  for this low price by giving  bonuses for                 
  services such  as delivery  or handling.   HB 133  clarifies                 
  exactly what  services and forms  of payment are  subject to                 
  these taxes.                                                                 
                                                                               
  PAUL  DICK,  JUNEAU  OPERATIONS,   INCOME  &  EXCISE   AUDIT                 
  DIVISION,  DEPARTMENT OF REVENUE,  noted that the Department                 
  of Revenue supports the proposed  legislation and added that                 
                                                                               
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  it would enhance State revenues.                                             
                                                                               
  Representative  Hoffman  questioned  if  the  Department  of                 
  Revenue  thought  that processors  were  currently complying                 
  with the law.  Mr. Dick thought the processors at large were                 
  reporting  to  the Department.    He  pointed out  that  the                 
  legislation  would  most directly  affect  the  mid-size and                 
  smaller processors.    Representative  Hoffman  asked  where                 
  those increased funds  would originate.   Mr. Dick  replied,                 
  the  fiscal  note  represents the  amount  derived  from the                 
  increased value on  fish.  The difference  would be delivery                 
  costs and other charges currently  subtracted from the value                 
  of the fish.                                                                 
                                                                               
  Representative Martin asked if revenue  would be shared on a                 
  50\50 percentage.  Mr. Dick stated it would.                                 
                                                                               
  Co-Chair MacLean inquired which processors would be impacted                 
  by the legislation.   Mr. Dick  replied that all  processors                 
  would be affected.                                                           
                                                                               
  Representative  Martin  MOVED  to  report   HB  133  out  of                 
  Committee  with  individual  recommendations  and  with  the                 
  accompanying fiscal note.  There  being NO OBJECTION, it was                 
  so ordered.                                                                  
                                                                               
  HB  133  was reported  out  of  Committee with  a  "do pass"                 
  recommendations and with a fiscal noted by the Department of                 
  Revenue dated 2/17/93.                                                       
  HOUSE BILL 66                                                                
                                                                               
       "An Act  relating to municipal property  tax exemptions                 
       for  certain residences and to property tax equivalency                 
       payments for certain  residents; and  providing for  an                 
       effective date."                                                        
                                                                               
  BRUCE GERAGHTY, DEPUTY COMMISSIONER, DEPARTMENT OF COMMUNITY                 
  AND REGIONAL  AFFAIRS, stated that  the Legislature  created                 
  the mandatory tax exemption program in 1973.  However, since                 
  1985  the  Legislature   has  failed  to  fully   refund  to                 
  communities the total cost of  this mandated exemption.  The                 
  renters rebate program was established in 1976 as a means of                 
  providing the same benefit to  seniors and disabled veterans                 
  that rent  their  residences.   The  estimated cost  of  the                 
  property  tax  program in  FY  94  would  be  $15.4  million                 
  dollars.   The Departments  proposed FY  94 budget  does not                 
  fund either program.                                                         
                                                                               
  The   Department  strongly   supports   making  the   senior                 
  citizens\disabled veterans property tax  exemption available                 
  to  municipalities  as  an   optional  local  tax  exemption                 
                                                                               
                                7                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  program.     Mr.   Geraghty  added,   in   the  Department's                 
  preliminary  research,  the  deferral  concept  appears   to                 
  benefit municipalities in  the long  run through payment  of                 
  property taxes at the time of sale.  Deferred taxes would be                 
  accounted for  as a  current year  receivable,  the same  as                 
  taxes paid, even  through the moneys  might not be paid  for                 
  several years.                                                               
                                                                               
  He stated  the  work draft  provided  four options  for  the                 
  municipality to exercise.                                                    
                                                                               
       *    Implement an exemption  for senior citizens and/or                 
            disabled veterans.                                                 
                                                                               
       *    Implement a  deferral for seniors  and/or disabled                 
            veterans.                                                          
                                                                               
       *    Implement   a  combination   of   the  two   above                 
            mentioned.                                                         
                                                                               
       *    Municipalities can decide not to  do either.  Both                 
            groups would then be taxed.                                        
                                                                               
  Mr.  Geraghty  stated that  the  renter's rebate  program is                 
  being repealed with the proposed legislation.                                
                                                                               
  Representative  Brown asked if the disabled veterans benefit                 
  would  be  repealed  with  the  proposed legislation.    Mr.                 
  Geraghty stated those programs would become a option for the                 
  local  municipalities   to  adopt.     Representative  Brown                 
  questioned the options chosen by DCRA.  Mr. Geraghty  stated                 
  the Department felt  there were only two  options available:                 
  Fully  funding  them  or to  have  the  local municipalities                 
  tailor  a  programs  addressing  their  senior  and  veteran                 
  populations.                                                                 
                                                                               
  Representative  Brown  advised  changing  the  option  to  a                 
  "needs"  based  program.   She  pointed  out  that currently                 
  thirty-six states have a "needs"  based program.  There  are                 
  over  ten thousand  persons  taking  advantage of  receiving                 
  benefit from the tax exemption  and another thousand persons                 
  who are receiving benefit from  the renter's rebate program.                 
  She  added,  for each  person who  is  not able  to maintain                 
  independently, large costs will accrue to society.                           
                                                                               
  Mr. Geraghty advised  that the  renter's rebate program  was                 
  instituted in the early 1980's  to parallel the property tax                 
  exemption.   It was to provide  the same type  of benefit to                 
  seniors and  disabled veterans  who rented  which was  being                 
  received   by  those   who   owned   their   own   property.                 
  Representative  Brown  asked   if  municipalities  would  be                 
  covering that cost.  Mr. Geraghty  thought the program would                 
                                                                               
                                8                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  disappear with the passage of the legislation.                               
                                                                               
  Representative  Grussendorf  proposed  that the  Legislature                 
  offer the municipalities the option to exercise the proposed                 
  programs with a twenty-five percent legislative subsidy.                     
                                                                               
  REPRESENTATIVE CON BUNDE stated  in 1973, the total  cost of                 
  the  property tax  exemption  program  was  $197.5  thousand                 
  dollars.   The program was fully funded for the last time in                 
  1985.  The number  of applicants has doubled over  the years                 
  and the growth  in the exemption program from FY 92 to FY 93                 
  increased by  fourteen  percent.   The current  value of  an                 
  exemption is $1,374 thousand dollars.                                        
                                                                               
  Representative  Bunde  added,  the non-exempt  taxpayers  in                 
  Alaska's  municipalities are required  to pay  an additional                 
  $10 million  dollars in property  taxes for FY  93, seventy-                 
  eight percent of the cost of the program.                                    
                                                                               
  Representative  Bunde  noted   A.S.  29.45.030(e)   requires                 
  municipalities to exempt  from local  property tax the  real                 
  property owned  and occupied  as the  primary residence  and                 
  permanent place of abode by:                                                 
                                                                               
       1.   Resident 65 years or older;                                        
                                                                               
       2.   Disabled veteran;                                                  
                                                                               
       3.   Resident at least 60 years old who is the widow or                 
            widower   of  a  person   qualified  for  such  an                 
            exemption, up  to an  assessed value  of $150,000.                 
            The exemption is currently mandatory.                              
                                                                               
  The HESS Committee  Substitute is written broadly  enough to                 
  give the municipalities the ability to limit the time on the                 
  deferral, or exemption if they so desire.                                    
                                                                               
  (Tape Change, HFC 93-42, Side 1).                                            
                                                                               
  Representative  Bunde  concluded,  the Governor's  Committee                 
  Substitute cuts out  what they feel is  restrictive language                 
  from  A.S.  29.45.030(e),  the  assessed  value up  to  $150                 
  thousand dollars, and  would also  take widows and  widowers                 
  who were  currently on the  exemption program and  make them                 
  ineligible for any program.                                                  
                                                                               
  Representative Martin asked the  limitations on deferral for                 
  tax rebate.  Representative Bunde stated there would be none                 
  as the municipalities funding does  not have any limitations                 
  on services provided.                                                        
                                                                               
  Representative Navarre interjected that  the senior citizens                 
                                                                               
                                9                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  on  fixed  incomes  would  be  the ones  most  significantly                 
  harmed.                                                                      
                                                                               
  RUPE ANDREWS, CAPITOL CITY TASK FORCE, AMERICAN  ASSOCIATION                 
  OF  RETIRED PERSONS  (AARP),  JUNEAU,  ALASKA, testified  in                 
  opposition to HB 66.   He stressed the importance  of senior                 
  spending in  Alaska from  pensions, annuities,  investments,                 
  social security which exceeds $1.2 million dollars per year.                 
  He felt  that  seniors should  be  encouraged to  remain  in                 
  Alaska                                                                       
                                                                               
  HB 66 will have a negative impact on seniors in Alaska.   To                 
  date, Alaska has been considered unique in it's policies  to                 
  assist seniors in having a quality  life.  The Pioneer Homes                 
  are  often  shown  to  visitors   with  pride  by  Alaskans.                 
  Additionally,  seniors have always  been a desireable social                 
  resource.   State policy until now  has recognized the elder                 
  resource.                                                                    
                                                                               
  Mr.  Andrews  stated,  HB  66  would  remove  the  mandatory                 
  objections  of municipalities  to forgive  personal property                 
  taxes  and  make  property exemption  a  local  decision and                 
  places a lien against that property  until the owners die or                 
  move.   The problem is  that the State  has failed  to fully                 
  fund the  tax forgiveness  program thus  forcing the  cities                 
  into some financial burdens.                                                 
                                                                               
  AARP requests that the Legislature  hold public meetings and                 
  develop a comprehensive policy.                                              
                                                                               
  Representative Martin  pointed out that currently  the State                 
  pays $178 million dollars per year  on senior programs.  Mr.                 
  Andrews noted that last year,  the seniors brought to Alaska                 
  $1.2 million dollars from various programs.   He stated that                 
  the cost benefit ratio has been exceeded.                                    
                                                                               
  Representative Parnell asked if there is a state which has a                 
  comprehensive policy toward seniors.  Mr. Andrews offered to                 
  provide that information to the Committee.                                   
                                                                               
  AMOS WALLACE, SENIOR  CITIZEN, JUNEAU, ALASKA,  testified in                 
  opposition  of  the proposed  legislation and  expressed his                 
  concern  with loosing  his property.    Representative Bunde                 
  responded there will be a deferral option which  would allow                 
  no taxes to be  paid until the owner was deceased  or moved.                 
  He noted that twenty-seven other  states offer their seniors                 
  a deferral option.                                                           
                                                                               
  CRYSTAL  SMITH,  ALASKA  MUNICIPAL   LEAGUE  (AML),  JUNEAU,                 
  ALASKA,  testified  that  the  proposed  legislation   would                 
  economically impact  senior citizens and  disabled veterans.                 
  This   impact   has    extensively   affected   the    local                 
                                                                               
                               10                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  municipalities  for many years.   The program has grown over                 
  twenty  percent in the last year.   AML wants to address the                 
  concern.                                                                     
                                                                               
       1.   AML's first  choice would be that  the Legislature                 
            fully fund  the mandate.   She added, since   1985                 
            this has not occurred.                                             
                                                                               
       2.   AML  encourages a State  rebate program.  Whatever                 
            amount the Legislature would commit to the program                 
            would go directly to the seniors.                                  
                                                                               
       3.   An ordinance presented to the voters for approval.                 
            She  felt the  voters would  opt to vote  for some                 
            type of "needs" based exemption.                                   
                                                                               
  Co-Chair  Larson  placed HB  66  in Subcommittee  with Chair                 
  Representative  MacLean  and  with   members  Representative                 
  Martin and Representative  Grussendorf.  HB  66 was HELD  in                 
  Committee for further discussion.                                            
  HOUSE BILL 64                                                                
                                                                               
       "An Act  creating the crimes  of stalking in  the first                 
       and second  degrees and providing  penalties for  their                 
       violation; providing a peace officer with the authority                 
       to  arrest without a warrant a person the peace officer                 
       has reasonable cause to believe has committed stalking;                 
       relating  to  the  release  before  trial of  a  person                 
       accused of stalking; and prohibiting the  suspension of                 
       imposition  of  sentence  of   a  person  convicted  of                 
       stalking."                                                              
                                                                               
  REPRESENTATIVE  CYNTHIA  TOOHEY testified  that  FBI reports                 
  thirty  percent of female murder victims  in 1990 were slain                 
  by husbands or boyfriends.  Following a stalking death of an                 
  actress,  California  reacted  by  passing  the first  "anti                 
  stalking" law.  Thirty-one other  states have followed suit.                 
  These laws are the result  of stalking victims' frustrations                 
  with the current  inability of law enforcement  officials to                 
  intervene prior  to a victim being physically attacked.  One                 
  in  twenty  adults  will  be   stalked  in  their  lifetime,                 
  researchers say.                                                             
                                                                               
  HB 64 was modeled after the Michigan Law which was passed in                 
  1992.  It is supported by the Department of Law, the Council                 
  on Domestic Violence  and Sexual Assault, the  Department of                 
  Public  Safety, the  Homer and Anchorage  Police Departments                 
  and the Alaska Association of Chiefs of Police.                              
                                                                               
  Representative Navarre  asked  if violation  of a  temporary                 
  restraining  order  would  result  in  a  felony  charge  of                 
                                                                               
                               11                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  stalking.                                                                    
                                                                               
  MARGO KNUTH, CRIMINAL DIVISION, DEPARTMENT OF LAW, testified                 
  violation of  a restraining order would meet  the element of                 
  stalking.                                                                    
                                                                               
  (Tape Change, HFC 93-42, Side 2).                                            
                                                                               
  Ms. Knuth  stated the  elements of the  stalking offense  is                 
  "knowingly  engaging  in  a course  of  conduct,  recklessly                 
  placing another person in fear of death or physical injury".                 
  The course of conduct is  based upon repeated non-consensual                 
  contact.                                                                     
                                                                               
  Representative Martin  asked the approximate number of cases                 
  per year would be filed.  Ms. Knuth expected that statewide,                 
  twelve cases per year would be filed and of those none would                 
  most  likely go to  trial.  Representative  Martin asked how                 
  many of  the twelve  cases would  be convicted.   Ms.  Knuth                 
  thought over half would be convicted.  Representative Martin                 
  noted his concern with added  probation costs that the  bill                 
  would incur.                                                                 
                                                                               
  MARCIA  MCKENZIE, COUNCIL  ON DOMESTIC  VIOLENCE AND  SEXUAL                 
  ASSAULT, (CDVSA) JUNEAU,  ALASKA testified in support  of HB
  64 and urged quick and prompt passage of the legislation.                    
                                                                               
  Representative  Brown  pointed  out  there would  be  fiscal                 
  impact by the Department of  Corrections.  Ms. Knuth replied                 
  probation revocation is based  on a new offense.   She added                 
  the convicted person  would be spending  the same amount  of                 
  time in  jail.   From the prosecutors  point of view,  it is                 
  easier  to  put   someone  back  in  jail   on  a  probation                 
  revocation.                                                                  
                                                                               
  SAM TRIVETTE, DIRECTOR  OF COMMUNITY CORRECTIONS, DEPARTMENT                 
  OF  CORRECTIONS,  stated   the  Department  of   Corrections                 
  provided a zero fiscal note because of experience based upon                 
  previous  probations  matters,  judges can  currently  place                 
  those  convicted on  probation for five  years.   Nearly all                 
  violations  occur   in   the   first   five   year   period.                 
  Representative Brown  disagreed and reiterated  her argument                 
  that there would be fiscal impact to that Department.                        
                                                                               
  Co-Chair Larson stated HB 64 would  be HELD in Committee for                 
  further discussion.                                                          
  ADJOURNMENT                                                                  
                                                                               
  The meeting adjourned at 3:45 P.M.                                           
                                                                               
                                                                               
                               12                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
                     HOUSE FINANCE COMMITTEE                                   
                          MARCH 9, 1993                                        
                            1:35 P.M.                                          
                                                                               
  TAPE HFC 93 - 41, Side 1, #000 - end.                                        
  TAPE HFC 93 - 41, Side 2, #000 - end.                                        
  TAPE HFC 93 - 42, Side 1, #000 - end.                                        
  TAPE HFC 93 - 42, Side 2, #000 - #286.                                       
                                                                               
  CALL TO ORDER                                                                
                                                                               
  Co-Chair Ron Larson called the meeting  of the House Finance                 
  Committee to order at 1:35 P.M.                                              
                                                                               
  PRESENT                                                                      
                                                                               
  Co-Chair Larson               Representative Brown                           
  Co-Chair MacLean              Representative Foster                          
  Vice-Chair Hanley             Representative Grussendorf                     
  Representative Hoffman        Representative Martin                          
  Representative Navarre        Representative Parnell                         
  Representative Therriault                                                    
                                                                               
  ALSO PRESENT                                                                 
                                                                               
  Representative  Carl  Moses;   Representative  Fran   Ulmer;                 
  Representative  Gary  Davis; Representative  Irene Nicholia;                 
  Representative   Con   Bunde;   Representative  Ed   Willis;                 
  Representative  Cynthia  Toohey;   Molly  McCammon,  Aid  to                 
  Representative  Carl  Moses; Paul  Dick,  Juneau Operations,                 
  Income & Excise Audit Division, Department of Revenue; Bruce                 
  Geraghty, Deputy  Commissioner, Department of  Community and                 
  Regional Affairs;  Rupe  Andrews, Capital  City  Task  Force                 
  American Citizens,  American Association of  Retired Persons                 
  (AARP),  Juneau,  Alaska;   Amos  Wallace,  Juneau,  Alaska;                 
  Crystal  Smith,  Alaska  Municipal  League, Juneau,  Alaska;                 
  Margo  Knuth, Criminal  Division, Department of  Law; Marcia                 
  McKenzie, Council on  Domestic Violence and Sexual  Assault,                 
  (CDVSA), Juneau, Alaska; Sam Trivette, Director of Community                 
  Corrections, Department of Corrections.                                      
                                                                               
  SUMMARY INFORMATION                                                          
                                                                               
  HB 55     An Act making appropriations for the operating and                 
            loan program expenses  of state government and  to                 
            capitalize funds;  and providing for  an effective                 
            date.                                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
                               13                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  HB 56     An   Act   making  appropriations   for  operating                 
            expenses for certain programs for which  the costs                 
            are  derived from  mandated formulas  or criteria,                 
            and for expenses for certain leases and  contracts                 
            for state  services and operations;  and providing                 
            for an effective date.                                             
                                                                               
            Incorporated subcommittee recommendations  for the                 
            Department of Fish and Game  and the Department of                 
            Law.                                                               
                                                                               
  HB 64     An  Act  creating the  crimes  of stalking  in the                 
            first and second  degrees and providing  penalties                 
            for  their violation;  providing  a peace  officer                 
            with the authority  to arrest without a  warrant a                 
            person  the peace officer  has reasonable cause to                 
            believe has  committed stalking;  relating to  the                 
            release  before  trial  of  a  person  accused  of                 
            stalking;  and  prohibiting   the  suspension   of                 
            imposition  of sentence  of a person  convicted of                 
            stalking.                                                          
                                                                               
            HB  64   was   held  in   Committee  for   further                 
            discussion.                                                        
                                                                               
  HB 133    An  Act amending  the  definition  of `value'  for                 
            purposes of administration of fisheries taxes; and                 
            providing for an effective date.                                   
                                                                               
            HB  133 was reported  out of Committee  with a "do                 
  pass"          recommendation  and  a  fiscal  note  by  the                 
                 Department of Revenue dated 2/17/93.                          
                                                                               
  HB 66     An  Act   relating  to   municipal  property   tax                 
            exemptions for certain residences and to  property                 
            tax  equivalency  payments for  certain residents;                 
            and providing for an effective date.                               
                                                                               
            HB   66  was   held   in  Committee   for  further                 
            discussion.   It was  placed in  subcommittee with                 
            Representative MacLean  as Chair and  with members                 
            Representative    Martin     and    Representative                 
            Grussendorf.                                                       
                                                                               
  DEPARTMENT OF LAW                                                            
                                                                               
  The Department of Law House Finance Subcommittee was Chaired                 
  by Representative Larson with members Representative Porter,                 
  Representative     Olberg,     Representative      Davidson,                 
  Representative Navarre and Representative Barnes.                            
                                                                               
  Co-Chair  Larson  provided  the   Committee  with  handouts.                 
                                                                               
                               14                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  [Attachment #1 & #3].   He stated that the  target reduction                 
  for the  Subcommittee was  $610,900 thousand  dollars.   The                 
  Subcommittee used  the Governor's 1994 proposed  budget from                 
  which  to base  the  increment/decrements.   Co-Chair Larson                 
  referenced "The Transaction Summary for  the Governor to the                 
  House" [Attachment #1].                                                      
                                                                               
  The  Subcommittee   made  four  changes  to  the  Governor's                 
  proposed budget.                                                             
                                                                               
       *    Prosecution -      reduction    -  $47.4  thousand                 
       dollar                                                                  
                                                                               
       *    Legal Services - Operations Divisions                              
            The  Governor  proposed   an  increase  of  twelve                 
            attorneys to work on natural resource issues.  The                 
            proposed increment to the Governor's budget  would                 
            be  $1.998  million  dollars.    The  Subcommittee                 
            reduced that increment by $549.9 thousand dollars.                 
                                                                               
                                                                               
       *    Exxon  Valdez  Litigation  -  reduction:    $3.462                 
            million  dollars.    With  the  completion of  the                 
            Alyeska settlement,  the Department of  Law stated                 
            they could  reduce the request  by $1.433  million                 
            dollars.  The Subcommittee recommends a  reduction                 
            of $1.5 million dollars.                                           
                                                                               
  Co-Chair  Larson  noted  the   proposed  decrement  to   the                 
  Department of  Law budget  would be  $2.473 million  dollars                 
  general funds, adding back the $50 thousand dollar increment                 
  for  the  position in  Barrow.   This  would make  the total                 
  proposed reduction - $1.197 million dollars in general funds                 
  for the FY 94 budget.                                                        
                                                                               
  The Law Subcommittee addressed the supplemental bill HB 135.                 
   The Department of Law addresses five sections.                              
                                                                               
       *    Section 8  increases the supplemental  request for                 
       $400      thousand dollars for prosecution costs.                       
                                                                               
       *    Section 9 is a request  for $6.600 million dollars                 
            in  general funds  and $2.200  million  dollars in                 
            Permanent Fund  Corporation receipts  for oil  and                 
            gas litigation.  [Attachment #2].                                  
                                                                               
       *    Section 10  requests  $280  thousand  dollars  for                 
            outside counsel to the Department  of Law in joint                 
            proceedings   with   the   Federal  Communications                 
            Commission   and   the  Alaska   Public  Utilities                 
            Commission.                                                        
                                                                               
                                                                               
                               15                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
       *    Section 11 is  a request for $35  thousand dollars                 
            for implementing the 1992 Subsistence Law.                         
                                                                               
       *    Section 12 is a request for $1.087 million dollars                 
            in judgement claims.                                               
                                                                               
  Co-Chair Larson explained that the Governor has requested an                 
  increase  of  $220.4  thousand   dollars  in  "other   fund"                 
  increments.   These would  be interagency  receipts obtained                 
  from Alaska  Housing Finance Corporation for  the Department                 
  of  Law  to   provide  legal   support.    Co-Chair   Larson                 
  recommended the increment be zeroed out.                                     
                                                                               
  Representative  Grussendorf  questioned the  $549.8 thousand                 
  dollar decrement to natural resource PCN's.  Co-Chair Larson                 
  replied,  the Governor's budget  requested twelve  full time                 
  positions  at  a  cost  of  $1.998  million  dollars.    The                 
  Subcommittee   reduced   the    recommendation   by    half.                 
  Representative Grussendorf noted his concern with inadequate                 
  protection of the State fishery  resources placing the State                 
  at a disadvantage in treaty negotiations.                                    
                                                                               
  Representative  Hoffman pointed out  that the  Department of                 
  Law has received an increase of thirty positions since 1992.                 
                                                                               
                                                                               
  Co-Chair  Larson MOVED  incorporating the Department  of Law                 
  Subcommittee   recommendations   including   the   amendment                 
  reduction  of $220.4  thousand dollars  into HB  55.   There                 
  being NO OBJECTIONS, it was incorporated.                                    
                                                                               
  DEPARTMENT OF FISH AND GAME                                                  
                                                                               
  The Department of Fish and Game  Subcommittee was Chaired by                 
  Representative  Hanley  with  members Representative  Moses,                 
  Representative Hudson, Representative  Bunde, Representative                 
  Gail   Phillips,   Representative   Hoffman,  Representative                 
  Davidson,   Representative   Nicholia   and   Representative                 
  Grussendorf.                                                                 
                                                                               
  Representative Hanley  provided the Committee  with handouts                 
  of the  Department of  Fish and  Game Subcommittee  proposed                 
  budget closeouts.  [Attachments #4 & #5].                                    
                                                                               
  He  stated, the  FY 93  authorized  general fund  amount was                 
  $46.889 million dollars.   The FY  93 supplemental added  an                 
  additional $584.3 thousand dollars.  The Governor's proposed                 
  FY 93 is $44.256 million dollars.  The Subcommittee was able                 
  to reach a two percent reduction beyond that proposed by the                 
  Governor.   The Subcommittee  did not  have any  increments,                 
  although there were switches within the Department.                          
                                                                               
                                                                               
                               16                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  Representative  Hanley  pointed  out  that  in  FY  92,  the                 
  Department  of  Fish  and  Game  began reducing  funds  that                 
  provided economic  development to the  commercial fisheries.                 
  The goal of the Subcommittee was to increase commercial fish                 
  harvest opportunities.                                                       
                                                                               
  Representative   Hanley   referenced  Attachment   #5,  "The                 
  Transaction Summary for the Governor to the House".                          
                                                                               
       *    Commercial Fisheries total  component increase  of                 
            $333.2  thousand  dollars  increasing the  harvest                 
            opportunities by $333.2 thousand dollars.                          
                                                                               
       *    Special  Projects  decrement  of   $20.4  thousand                 
            dollars.                                                           
                                                                               
       *    Sport  Fisheries  decrement  of   $488.7  thousand                 
            dollars.                                                           
                                                                               
       *    F.R.E.D. increment of $297.4 thousand dollars.  He                 
            pointed out that  four hatcheries had been  zeroed                 
            out last  year.   This increment  would allow  the                 
            Department more time for the closure transition of                 
            those hatcheries.   Funds had  been added back  to                 
            Deer Mountain Hatchery and Crooker Creek Hatchery.                 
                                                                               
                                                                               
       *    Wildlife   Conservation   decrement   for   $318.9                 
            thousand dollars.   Fees  have been switched  from                 
            this component.                                                    
                                                                               
       *    Administration  and  Support decrement  for $131.0                 
            thousand dollars.                                                  
                                                                               
       *    Boards of Fisheries  and Game decrement for  $21.9                 
            thousand dollars.                                                  
                                                                               
       *    Advisory Committee/Regional Council  reduction for                 
            $240.5 thousand  dollars including a  reduction of                 
            regional coordinators.                                             
                                                                               
       *    Habitat decrement of $50.0 thousand dollars.                       
                                                                               
       *    Special Projects reduction from the 470 Funds from                 
            the Department of  Environmental Conservation  for                 
            $25.2 thousand dollars.                                            
                                                                               
       *    Subsistence reduction for $63.9  thousand dollars.                 
                                                                               
                                                                               
  Representative   Hanley  reiterated,   the  Fish   and  Game                 
  Subcommittee's  recommended  closeout would  be  two percent                 
                                                                               
                               17                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  below the Governor's proposed budget  and five percent below                 
  last year.                                                                   
                                                                               
  Co-Chair  MacLean  asked if  there  were any  duplication of                 
  projects   requested  in   the   capital   budget  and   the                 
  subcommittee proposals.   Representative Hanley stated there                 
  was not.                                                                     
                                                                               
  Co-Chair MacLean noted for the record that the Department of                 
  Fish  and  Game recommended  the  closure of  the Kotzebuque                 
  Office  asking that  it be  transferred to  Fairbanks.   She                 
  advised that subsistence  offices should  be located at  the                 
  regional areas and should not be moved to the urban centers.                 
                                                                               
  Representative Hoffman stressed his concern in spending less                 
  money on the management of renewable resources.  He felt the                 
  State could  benefit in the  long run  from better  resource                 
  management.                                                                  
                                                                               
  Representative Hanley MOVED  incorporating the  Subcommittee                 
  recommendations  into HB 55.   There being  NO OBJECTION, it                 
  was incorporated.                                                            
                                                                               
  (Tape Change HFC 93-41, Side 2).                                             
                                                                               
  HOUSE BILL 133                                                               
                                                                               
       "An Act amending the definition of `value' for purposes                 
       of administration of fisheries taxes; and providing for                 
       an effective date."                                                     
                                                                               
  MOLLY  MCCAMMON, AID  TO  REPRESENTATIVE CARL  MOSES, stated                 
  that HB  133 is  substantially similar  to existing  law but                 
  restructures the definition of "value" used in administering                 
  fisheries taxes in order to enhance clarity.                                 
                                                                               
  The  bill is identical to  Resources CSHB 448, introduced by                 
  Representative Gail Phillips last session, with some further                 
  clarification recommended by the Division of Legal Services.                 
  The legislation has not received any known opposition.                       
                                                                               
  She pointed out,  in the past processors  and fishermen have                 
  disputed  the  definition  of  "value"  in  paying  the  raw                 
  fisheries  tax and salmon enhancement tax.   The argument is                 
  that bonuses and delivery  costs are not part of  the actual                 
  amount paid fishermen  for their  fish.  The  interpretation                 
  leaves an  opening for  processors to  pay lower  prices for                 
  fish, and make up for  this low price by giving  bonuses for                 
  services  such as  delivery or handling.   HB  133 clarifies                 
  exactly what  services and forms  of payment are  subject to                 
  these taxes.                                                                 
                                                                               
                                                                               
                               18                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  PAUL  DICK,  JUNEAU  OPERATIONS,   INCOME  &  EXCISE   AUDIT                 
  DIVISION,  DEPARTMENT OF REVENUE,  noted that the Department                 
  of Revenue supports the proposed  legislation and added that                 
  it would enhance State revenues.                                             
                                                                               
  Representative  Hoffman  questioned  if  the  Department  of                 
  Revenue  thought  that processors  were  currently complying                 
  with the law.  Mr. Dick thought the processors at large were                 
  reporting  to  the Department.    He  pointed  out that  the                 
  legislation  would most  directly  affect  the mid-size  and                 
  smaller processors.    Representative  Hoffman  asked  where                 
  those increased funds  would originate.   Mr. Dick  replied,                 
  the  fiscal  note  represents the  amount  derived  from the                 
  increased value on fish.   The difference would be  delivery                 
  costs and other charges currently  subtracted from the value                 
  of the fish.                                                                 
                                                                               
  Representative  Martin asked if revenue would be shared on a                 
  50\50 percentage.  Mr. Dick stated it would.                                 
                                                                               
  Co-Chair MacLean inquired which processors would be impacted                 
  by the legislation.   Mr. Dick  replied that all  processors                 
  would be affected.                                                           
                                                                               
  Representative  Martin  MOVED  to  report   HB  133  out  of                 
  Committee  with  individual  recommendations  and  with  the                 
  accompanying  fiscal note.  There being NO OBJECTION, it was                 
  so ordered.                                                                  
                                                                               
  HB  133  was reported  out  of  Committee with  a  "do pass"                 
  recommendations and with a fiscal noted by the Department of                 
  Revenue dated 2/17/93.                                                       
                                                                               
  HOUSE BILL 66                                                                
                                                                               
       "An Act relating to  municipal property tax  exemptions                 
       for certain residences and to property  tax equivalency                 
       payments for  certain residents;  and providing  for an                 
       effective date."                                                        
                                                                               
  BRUCE GERAGHTY, DEPUTY COMMISSIONER, DEPARTMENT OF COMMUNITY                 
  AND REGIONAL AFFAIRS,  stated that  the Legislature  created                 
  the mandatory tax exemption program in 1973.  However, since                 
  1985  the  Legislature   has  failed  to  fully   refund  to                 
  communities  the total cost of this mandated exemption.  The                 
  renters rebate program was established in 1976 as a means of                 
  providing the same benefit to  seniors and disabled veterans                 
  that rent  their  residences.   The  estimated cost  of  the                 
  property  tax  program  in  FY  94  would  be  $15.4 million                 
  dollars.   The  Departments proposed  FY 94 budget  does not                 
  fund either program.                                                         
                                                                               
                                                                               
                               19                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  The   Department   strongly  supports   making   the  senior                 
  citizens\disabled veterans property tax  exemption available                 
  to  municipalities  as  an   optional  local  tax  exemption                 
  program.     Mr.   Geraghty   added,  in   the  Department's                 
  preliminary  research,  the  deferral  concept  appears   to                 
  benefit municipalities in  the long  run through payment  of                 
  property taxes at the time of sale.  Deferred taxes would be                 
  accounted  for as  a  current year  receivable, the  same as                 
  taxes paid, even  through the moneys  might not be paid  for                 
  several years.                                                               
                                                                               
  He stated  the  work draft  provided  four options  for  the                 
  municipality to exercise.                                                    
                                                                               
       *    Implement an exemption  for senior citizens and/or                 
            disabled veterans.                                                 
                                                                               
       *    Implement a  deferral for seniors  and/or disabled                 
            veterans.                                                          
                                                                               
       *    Implement   a  combination   of   the  two   above                 
            mentioned.                                                         
                                                                               
       *    Municipalities can decide not to  do either.  Both                 
            groups would then be taxed.                                        
                                                                               
  Mr.  Geraghty  stated that  the  renter's rebate  program is                 
  being repealed with the proposed legislation.                                
                                                                               
  Representative Brown asked if the disabled  veterans benefit                 
  would  be  repealed  with  the  proposed legislation.    Mr.                 
  Geraghty stated those programs would become a option for the                 
  local  municipalities   to  adopt.     Representative  Brown                 
  questioned the options chosen by DCRA.   Mr. Geraghty stated                 
  the Department felt  there were only two  options available:                 
  Fully  funding  them  or to  have  the  local municipalities                 
  tailor  a  programs  addressing  their  senior  and  veteran                 
  populations.                                                                 
                                                                               
  Representative  Brown  advised  changing  the  option  to  a                 
  "needs"  based  program.   She  pointed  out  that currently                 
  thirty-six states have  a "needs" based program.   There are                 
  over  ten  thousand  persons taking  advantage  of receiving                 
  benefit from the tax exemption  and another thousand persons                 
  who are receiving benefit from  the renter's rebate program.                 
  She  added,  for each  person who  is  not able  to maintain                 
  independently, large costs will accrue to society.                           
                                                                               
  Mr. Geraghty advised  that the  renter's rebate program  was                 
  instituted in  the early 1980's to parallel the property tax                 
  exemption.   It was  to provide the same  type of benefit to                 
  seniors and  disabled veterans  who rented  which was  being                 
                                                                               
                               20                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  received   by  those   who   owned   their   own   property.                 
  Representative  Brown  asked  if  municipalities  would   be                 
  covering that cost.  Mr. Geraghty thought  the program would                 
  disappear with the passage of the legislation.                               
                                                                               
  Representative  Grussendorf  proposed  that the  Legislature                 
  offer the municipalities the option to exercise the proposed                 
  programs with a twenty-five percent legislative subsidy.                     
                                                                               
  REPRESENTATIVE  CON BUNDE stated in  1973, the total cost of                 
  the  property  tax  exemption  program  was  $197.5 thousand                 
  dollars.  The program was fully funded  for the last time in                 
  1985.  The number  of applicants has doubled over  the years                 
  and the growth  in the exemption program from FY 92 to FY 93                 
  increased  by fourteen  percent.   The current  value of  an                 
  exemption is $1,374 thousand dollars.                                        
                                                                               
  Representative  Bunde  added,  the non-exempt  taxpayers  in                 
  Alaska's municipalities  are required  to pay  an additional                 
  $10 million  dollars in property  taxes for FY  93, seventy-                 
  eight percent of the cost of the program.                                    
                                                                               
  Representative  Bunde  noted   A.S.  29.45.030(e)   requires                 
  municipalities to exempt  from local  property tax the  real                 
  property owned  and occupied  as the  primary residence  and                 
  permanent place of abode by:                                                 
                                                                               
       1.   Resident 65 years or older;                                        
                                                                               
       2.   Disabled veteran;                                                  
                                                                               
       3.   Resident at least 60 years old who is the widow or                 
            widower  of   a  person  qualified  for   such  an                 
            exemption,  up to  an assessed value  of $150,000.                 
            The exemption is currently mandatory.                              
                                                                               
  The HESS Committee  Substitute is written broadly  enough to                 
  give the municipalities the ability to limit the time on the                 
  deferral, or exemption if they so desire.                                    
                                                                               
  (Tape Change, HFC 93-42, Side 1).                                            
                                                                               
  Representative  Bunde  concluded,  the Governor's  Committee                 
  Substitute cuts out  what they feel is  restrictive language                 
  from  A.S.  29.45.030(e),  the  assessed  value up  to  $150                 
  thousand dollars, and  would also  take widows and  widowers                 
  who were  currently on the  exemption program and  make them                 
  ineligible for any program.                                                  
                                                                               
  Representative Martin  asked the limitations on deferral for                 
  tax rebate.  Representative Bunde stated there would be none                 
  as the municipalities funding does  not have any limitations                 
                                                                               
                               21                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  on services provided.                                                        
                                                                               
  Representative Navarre interjected  that the senior citizens                 
  on  fixed  incomes  would  be  the ones  most  significantly                 
  harmed.                                                                      
                                                                               
  RUPE ANDREWS, CAPITOL CITY TASK  FORCE, AMERICAN ASSOCIATION                 
  OF  RETIRED  PERSONS  (AARP), JUNEAU,  ALASKA,  testified in                 
  opposition to HB 66.   He stressed the importance  of senior                 
  spending in  Alaska from  pensions, annuities,  investments,                 
  social security which exceeds $1.2 million dollars per year.                 
  He felt  that  seniors should  be  encouraged to  remain  in                 
  Alaska                                                                       
                                                                               
  HB 66 will have a negative impact on seniors in Alaska.   To                 
  date, Alaska has been considered unique  in it's policies to                 
  assist seniors in having a quality  life.  The Pioneer Homes                 
  are  often  shown  to  visitors   with  pride  by  Alaskans.                 
  Additionally, seniors  have always been a  desireable social                 
  resource.  State  policy until now has  recognized the elder                 
  resource.                                                                    
                                                                               
  Mr.  Andrews  stated,  HB  66  would  remove  the  mandatory                 
  objections  of municipalities  to forgive  personal property                 
  taxes  and  make  property exemption  a  local  decision and                 
  places a lien against that property  until the owners die or                 
  move.  The  problem is  that the State  has failed to  fully                 
  fund the  tax forgiveness  program thus  forcing the  cities                 
  into some financial burdens.                                                 
                                                                               
  AARP requests that the Legislature  hold public meetings and                 
  develop a comprehensive policy.                                              
                                                                               
  Representative Martin pointed  out that currently  the State                 
  pays $178 million dollars per year  on senior programs.  Mr.                 
  Andrews  noted that last year, the seniors brought to Alaska                 
  $1.2 million dollars  from various programs.  He stated that                 
  the cost benefit ratio has been exceeded.                                    
                                                                               
  Representative Parnell asked if there is a state which has a                 
  comprehensive policy toward seniors.  Mr. Andrews offered to                 
  provide that information to the Committee.                                   
                                                                               
  AMOS  WALLACE, SENIOR CITIZEN,  JUNEAU, ALASKA, testified in                 
  opposition  of the  proposed legislation  and expressed  his                 
  concern  with loosing  his  property.   Representative Bunde                 
  responded there will be a  deferral option which would allow                 
  no taxes to be paid  until the owner was deceased  or moved.                 
  He noted that twenty-seven other  states offer their seniors                 
  a deferral option.                                                           
                                                                               
  CRYSTAL  SMITH,  ALASKA  MUNICIPAL   LEAGUE  (AML),  JUNEAU,                 
                                                                               
                               22                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  ALASKA,  testified  that  the   proposed  legislation  would                 
  economically impact  senior citizens and  disabled veterans.                 
  This   impact    has   extensively   affected    the   local                 
  municipalities for  many years.  The program  has grown over                 
  twenty  percent in the last year.   AML wants to address the                 
  concern.                                                                     
                                                                               
       1.   AML's first choice would  be that the  Legislature                 
            fully  fund the mandate.   She added,  since  1985                 
            this has not occurred.                                             
                                                                               
       2.   AML encourages  a State rebate program.   Whatever                 
            amount the Legislature would commit to the program                 
            would go directly to the seniors.                                  
                                                                               
       3.   An ordinance presented to the voters for approval.                 
            She felt  the voters would  opt to  vote for  some                 
            type of "needs" based exemption.                                   
                                                                               
  Co-Chair  Larson  placed HB  66  in Subcommittee  with Chair                 
  Representative  MacLean  and  with   members  Representative                 
  Martin and Representative  Grussendorf.  HB  66 was HELD  in                 
  Committee for further discussion.                                            
                                                                               
  HOUSE BILL 64                                                                
                                                                               
       "An  Act creating the  crimes of stalking  in the first                 
       and second degrees  and providing  penalties for  their                 
       violation; providing a peace officer with the authority                 
       to arrest without a warrant a person  the peace officer                 
       has reasonable cause to believe has committed stalking;                 
       relating  to  the  release  before  trial of  a  person                 
       accused of stalking; and  prohibiting the suspension of                 
       imposition   of  sentence  of  a  person  convicted  of                 
       stalking."                                                              
                                                                               
  REPRESENTATIVE  CYNTHIA  TOOHEY testified  that  FBI reports                 
  thirty percent of  female murder victims in  1990 were slain                 
  by husbands or boyfriends.  Following a stalking death of an                 
  actress,  California  reacted  by passing  the  first  "anti                 
  stalking" law.  Thirty-one other  states have followed suit.                 
  These laws are the result  of stalking victims' frustrations                 
  with the current  inability of law enforcement  officials to                 
  intervene prior to a victim being physically attacked.   One                 
  in  twenty  adults  will  be   stalked  in  their  lifetime,                 
  researchers say.                                                             
                                                                               
  HB 64 was modeled after the Michigan Law which was passed in                 
  1992.  It is supported by the Department of Law, the Council                 
  on Domestic Violence  and Sexual Assault, the  Department of                 
  Public  Safety, the Homer  and Anchorage  Police Departments                 
  and the Alaska Association of Chiefs of Police.                              
                                                                               
                               23                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  Representative Navarre  asked  if violation  of a  temporary                 
  restraining  order  would  result  in  a  felony  charge  of                 
  stalking.                                                                    
                                                                               
  MARGO KNUTH, CRIMINAL DIVISION, DEPARTMENT OF LAW, testified                 
  violation of a restraining  order would meet the  element of                 
  stalking.                                                                    
                                                                               
  (Tape Change, HFC 93-42, Side 2).                                            
                                                                               
  Ms.  Knuth stated the  elements of  the stalking  offense is                 
  "knowingly engaging  in  a  course  of  conduct,  recklessly                 
  placing another person in fear of death or physical injury".                 
  The course of conduct is  based upon repeated non-consensual                 
  contact.                                                                     
                                                                               
  Representative Martin asked the approximate number of  cases                 
  per year would be filed.  Ms. Knuth expected that statewide,                 
  twelve cases per year would be filed and of those none would                 
  most  likely go to  trial.  Representative  Martin asked how                 
  many of  the twelve  cases would  be convicted.   Ms.  Knuth                 
  thought over half would be convicted.  Representative Martin                 
  noted his concern  with added probation costs  that the bill                 
  would incur.                                                                 
                                                                               
  MARCIA MCKENZIE,  COUNCIL ON  DOMESTIC  VIOLENCE AND  SEXUAL                 
  ASSAULT, (CDVSA) JUNEAU,  ALASKA testified in support  of HB
  64 and urged quick and prompt passage of the legislation.                    
                                                                               
  Representative  Brown  pointed  out there  would  be  fiscal                 
  impact by  the Department of Corrections.  Ms. Knuth replied                 
  probation revocation is based  on a new offense.   She added                 
  the convicted person  would be spending  the same amount  of                 
  time in  jail.  From  the prosecutors point  of view,  it is                 
  easier  to  put   someone  back  in  jail  on   a  probation                 
  revocation.                                                                  
                                                                               
  SAM TRIVETTE, DIRECTOR  OF COMMUNITY CORRECTIONS, DEPARTMENT                 
  OF  CORRECTIONS,  stated   the  Department  of   Corrections                 
  provided a zero fiscal note because of experience based upon                 
  previous  probations  matters,  judges can  currently  place                 
  those convicted on  probation for  five years.   Nearly  all                 
  violations   occur   in   the   first   five  year   period.                 
  Representative Brown  disagreed and reiterated  her argument                 
  that there would be fiscal impact to that Department.                        
                                                                               
  Co-Chair Larson stated HB 64 would  be HELD in Committee for                 
  further discussion.                                                          
                                                                               
  ADJOURNMENT                                                                  
                                                                               
                                                                               
                               24                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  The meeting adjourned at 3:45 P.M.                                           
                                                                               
                                                                               
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