Legislature(1993 - 1994)

04/01/1993 08:35 AM FIN

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
txt
                                                                               
                                                                               
                     HOUSE FINANCE COMMITTEE                                   
                          APRIL 1, 1993                                        
                            8:35 A.M.                                          
                                                                               
  TAPE HFC 93 - 86, Side 2, #000 - end.                                        
  TAPE HFC 93 - 87, Side 1, #000 - end.                                        
  TAPE HFC 93 - 87, Side 2, #000 - #105.                                       
                                                                               
  CALL TO ORDER                                                                
                                                                               
  Co-Chair Ron Larson called the meeting of  the House Finance                 
  Committee to order at 8:35 A.M.                                              
                                                                               
  PRESENT                                                                      
                                                                               
  Co-Chair Larson               Representative Brown                           
  Co-Chair MacLean              Representative Foster                          
  Vice-Chair Hanley             Representative Grussendorf                     
  Representative Hoffman        Representative Martin                          
  Representative Therriault     Representative Parnell                         
                                                                               
  Representative  Navarre was not present for the meeting.                     
                                                                               
  ALSO PRESENT                                                                 
                                                                               
  Jim  Forbes,  Assistant   Attorney  General,  Fair  Business                 
  Practice    Section;    Representative       Eldon   Mulder;                 
  Representative     Pat   Carney;   Jack   Phelps,   Aid   to                 
  Representative  Peter Kott; Cindy Smith, Executive Director,                 
  Alaska  Network on  Domestic  Violence  and Sexual  Assault,                 
  Juneau,  Alaska;  Myran  Naneng,  (teleconference),  Bethel,                 
  Alaska; Karen Perdue,  (teleconference), Fairbanks,  Alaska;                 
  Jane Angvik, (teleconference), Anchorage, Alaska.                            
                                                                               
  SUMMARY INFORMATION                                                          
  HB 67     An Act relating to eligibility for and payments of                 
            public assistance; and  providing for an effective                 
            date.                                                              
                                                                               
            HB   67   was  held   in  Committee   for  further                 
  discussion.                                                                  
  HB 109    An Act relating to blood tests for persons charged                 
            with sex offenses; and providing for an  effective                 
            date.                                                              
                                                                               
            CS HB 109 (JUD) was reported out of Committee with                 
            "no recommendation" and with  fiscal notes by  the                 
            Department  of  Health  and Social  Services,  the                 
            Department   of   Law   and   the  Department   of                 
                                                                               
                                1                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
            Corrections dated 3/19/93.                                         
  HB 113    An    Act    regulating   the    solicitation   of                 
            contributions by charitable organizations and paid                 
            solicitors  and  the  solicitation  of  sales   by                 
            telephonic  means; and  amending  Alaska Rules  of                 
            Civil Procedure 79 and 82.                                         
                                                                               
            HB   113  was  held   in  Committee   for  further                 
            discussion.                                                        
  HB 137    An  Act  authorizing  special medical  parole  for                 
            terminally ill prisoners.                                          
                                                                               
            CS HB 137 (JUD) was reported out of Committee with                 
            a  "do pass" recommendation  and with  zero fiscal                 
            notes  by  the  Department  of  Corrections  dated                 
            3/01/93 and the Department of Administration.                      
  HOUSE BILL 113                                                               
                                                                               
       "An Act regulating the solicitation of contributions by                 
       charitable organizations  and paid  solicitors and  the                 
       solicitation of sales by telephonic means; and amending                 
       Alaska Rules of Civil Procedure 79 and 82."                             
                                                                               
  Co-Chair  Larson commented  that HB  113  was created  in an                 
  effort    to    regulate   telemarketers    and   charitable                 
  organizations who solicit donations by telephone.  There has                 
  been a dramatic  increase in fraudulent activity  in Alaska.                 
  With regulations adopted,  the public  would have a  renewed                 
  trust in  donating to  legitimate charitable  organizations.                 
  The immediate  distrust when  the telephone  rings would  be                 
  replaced with  a confidence  that a  person is  giving to  a                 
  regulated charity  and that their  money would  be going  to                 
  that organization and its charitable needs.                                  
                                                                               
  JAMES FORBES,  ASSISTANT  ATTORNEY  GENERAL,  FAIR  BUSINESS                 
  PRACTICES   SECTION,   JUNEAU,   ALASKA,   (teleconference),                 
  explained  that the  bill would  regulate solicitations  for                 
  telephonic sales  and charitable  fund raising.  These areas                 
  are  currently  unregulated.     State  consumer  protection                 
  investigators have noticed a dramatic increase in fraudulent                 
  activity in Alaska.   Most  states have adopted  legislation                 
  dealing with charitable solicitation fraud and telemarketing                 
  scams, although Alaska has  not.  As a result,  scam artists                 
  are avoiding  those regulated states, and  are concentrating                 
  their activities on unregulated states  which cause the loss                 
  of millions of dollars each year.                                            
                                                                               
  The legislation would provide:                                               
                                                                               
                                                                               
                                2                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
       1.   Regulation of Telemarketers.                                       
       2.   Regulation of Charitable Solicitations.                            
       3.   Relation to Consumer Protection Law.                               
       4.   Full Costs and Attorney's Fees.                                    
                                                                               
  Co-Chair MacLean  stated that  many Native  people in  rural                 
  areas sell their  handiwork to others  over the phone.   She                 
  asked how  the legislation would  affect them.   Mr.  Forbes                 
  stated  that  if those  individuals  were not  selling their                 
  goods   telephonically,   they   would   be   excused   from                 
  registering.    He  added,  there is  no  fee  required  for                 
  registration.  If the  actual sale of the product  will take                 
  place after the telephonic meeting between the buyer and the                 
  seller, they again would be excused from registration.                       
                                                                               
  Co-Chair MacLean  asked  how the  small  cottage  industries                 
  would be  affected by the  legislation.   Mr. Forbes  stated                 
  that they would be  required to register if they  sell their                 
  handcrafts by telephone.                                                     
                                                                               
  Mr.  Forbes   commented  on  the   advertising  registration                 
  requirement for public  radio stations who do  fund raising,                 
  emphasizing that the filing system is not difficult.                         
                                                                               
  Representative  Foster  felt that the legislation  would not                 
  receive compliance  in the  small village  areas of  Western                 
  Alaska.  Representative   Brown  recommended placing HB  213                 
  into  Subcommittee  to  develop  an  amendment  which  would                 
  address the village  area people  who sell small  handicraft                 
  projects.  Co-Chair  MacLean suggested that the  language on                 
  Page 5,  Lines 22  -  26 currently  addresses that  concern.                 
  Representative  Brown  reminded the  Committee that many  of                 
  the small  village areas do not  make the sale with  face to                 
  face contact and consequently they would  be in violation of                 
  the legislation if they had not registered.                                  
                                                                               
  Mr.  Forbes acknowledged  that the  State would  need  to be                 
  cautious in  providing a  blanket exemption  to rural  areas                 
  within the State.  He reminded the Committee that the people                 
  who commit  the worst  fraud crimes  are soliciting  between                 
  $300 - $500 hundred  dollars.   Representative   Grussendorf                 
  asked if there  were any "resale loopholes"  for the smaller                 
  regions.  Mr.  Forbes stated that concept would be used as a                 
  disadvantage for the legislation.                                            
                                                                               
  Co-Chair Larson emphasized the need for consumer  protection                 
  and   urged   that   the  legislation   not   be   weakened.                 
  Representative  Hoffman  recommended an exclusion  clause be                 
  added for Alaska handicrafts.                                                
                                                                               
  Representative    Brown questioned  the  impact of  the zero                 
  fiscal note.  Mr. Forbes replied, currently a lot of time is                 
                                                                               
                                3                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  spent on chasing  people who  are difficult to  catch.   The                 
  legislation  will   make   that  time   spent   much   less.                 
  Representative  Foster  asked why  a person would  register.                 
  Mr. Forbes replied  that if a  person fails to register  and                 
  they are caught stealing money, they  will be charged with a                 
  Class C felony.                                                              
                                                                               
  HB 213 was HELD in Committee for further discussion.                         
                                                                               
  (Tape Charge, HFC 93-86, Side 1).                                            
  HOUSE BILL 137                                                               
                                                                               
       "An  Act   authorizing  special   medical  parole   for                 
       terminally ill prisoners."                                              
                                                                               
  REPRESENTATIVE ELDON MULDER stated that HB 137 would provide                 
  special medical parole  for terminally  ill prisoners.   The                 
  Department  of  Corrections  is   responsible  for  inmates'                 
  medical  costs as long as they remain in custody.  He added,                 
  covering  health  costs  is  a   serious  financial  burden,                 
  particularly when a terminal illness is involved.                            
                                                                               
  The bill would give the parole board the discretion to grant                 
  special medical parole  for terminally ill patients  that it                 
  determines are not a threat to society.  Once paroled, their                 
  medical  costs are picked  up by Medicare  or Medicaid, thus                 
  easing   the   financial  burden   on   the   Department  of                 
  Corrections.                                                                 
                                                                               
  Co-Chair  Larson  asked   who  decides  if  a   prisoner  is                 
  terminally ill.   Representative   Mulder said the  decision                 
  would be make by a common consensus of physicians.                           
                                                                               
  Representative    Foster  MOVED  to  report  HB  137 out  of                 
  Committee  with  individual  recommendations  and  with  the                 
  accompanying zero fiscal notes.   There being NO OBJECTIONS,                 
  it was so ordered.                                                           
                                                                               
  CS  HB 137 (JUD)  was reported out  of Committee  with a "do                 
  pass" recommendation and with  two zero fiscal notes by  the                 
  Department of Corrections  dated 3/01/93 and the  Department                 
  of Administration.                                                           
  HOUSE BILL 109                                                               
                                                                               
       "An Act  relating to  blood tests  for persons  charged                 
       with sex  offenses;  and  providing  for  an  effective                 
       date."                                                                  
                                                                               
  JACK PHELPS, AID  TO REPRESENTATIVE  PETE KOTT, stated  that                 
  the purpose of HB 109 is to  provide an avenue of relief for                 
                                                                               
                                4                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  victims of sexual assault.  The  threat of HIV infection and                 
  of infection from  other sexually transmitted diseases  is a                 
  serious  complicated  side-effect  of  being  victimized  by                 
  sexual assault.   The  State  has a  compelling interest  in                 
  assuring innocent victims  of crime, timely relief  from the                 
  anxiety that may result from sexual assault.                                 
                                                                               
  HB 109 allows the  victim of sexual assault to  petition the                 
  court  to  require  a blood  test  on  the  defendant.   The                 
  legislation  also  provides  that  the  State must  make  it                 
  available to both  the victim  and the alleged  perpetrator,                 
  upon  their  request, counseling  relating  to HIV  and AIDS                 
  which  is  medically  appropriate  for  those  persons,  and                 
  referrals for medical and support services.                                  
                                                                               
  The  legislation  is designed  to minimize  the cost  to the                 
  State for  implementing the program.   If  the defendant  is                 
  convicted, he or she  must reimburse the state for  the cost                 
  of  the  test.    The  court  may order  the  Department  of                 
  Corrections  to   provide  for  the   reimbursement  through                 
  garnishment.                                                                 
                                                                               
  The Federal  Crime Control Act of 1990 specified that states                 
  must  have a law  such as HB  109 adopted or  they will lose                 
  part  of  their  law  enforcement  assistance grants.    The                 
  deadline  established by Congress is October,  1993.  If the                 
  bill fails  to pass,  Alaska's Department  of Public  Safety                 
  will lose approximately $185 thousand dollars in FY 94.  The                 
  bill can  satisfy the federal requirement and simultaneously                 
  form an integral  part of an  effort by the State  to ensure                 
  that  victims of  crime  in  our  state are  afforded  every                 
  opportunity to receive appropriate relief.                                   
                                                                               
  He concluded, the legislation tried to balance the rights of                 
  the victim against the rights of  the defendant.  He pointed                 
  out  that cause finding  is required which  will require the                 
  State to demonstrate  that there is  a probable cause.   The                 
  court  is   now  required   to  provide   a  confidentiality                 
  statement.  There are portions of the bill which protect the                 
  clients privacy.  He added, the purpose of the exemption for                 
  disclosure by  the victim would allow those persons, who the                 
  victim  has  close   associations  with  to  be   given  the                 
  information.   He reminded  the Committee  that the  subject                 
  matter  contains  the  potential for  disease  and  that the                 
  victim has the right to tell those who they are close with.                  
                                                                               
  Representative   Brown  pointed  out that  a  test does  not                 
  assure if a person is infected.  It could take from a six to                 
  eight month period for  the presence of HIV to  appear, even                 
  though continuing to  transmit the  virus.  She  recommended                 
  providing   services  to  help   the  victim  address  their                 
  situation.  The test would not solve the problem.                            
                                                                               
                                5                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  CINDY SMITH, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, ALASKA NETWORK  ON DOMESTIC                 
  VIOLENCE AND SEXUAL ASSAULT, JUNEAU, ALASKA, stated that the                 
  network has been  investigating and discussing the  issue of                 
  mandatory STD testing for persons  charged with sex offenses                 
  for over two  years.   The issue is  complex and  emotional.                 
  Literature   on   the  subject   is   minimal,  occasionally                 
  contradictory, often defending one position  or the other in                 
  the competing social  interests of protecting a  rape victim                 
  and  protecting  the  persons  infected  with  the  sexually                 
  transmitted diseases, especially HIV.                                        
                                                                               
  Transmission of STD's as  a result of rape is  not uncommon.                 
  It  is  currently standard  procedure  at most  hospitals to                 
  provide a rape  victim with  a course of  antibiotics as  an                 
  automatic measure without waiting for  information as to the                 
  status of  the offender.   The Center  for Disease  Control,                 
  AIDS Epidemiology Division  estimates that the chances  of a                 
  rape victim contracting HIV as a result of an assault  to be                 
  very  low  but admits  that the  figure  could be  higher in                 
  multiple exposure and that even  single rapes may constitute                 
  a greater  hazard because of the rather  common occupance of                 
  tearing of  vaginal surfaces.  In 1990, the first documented                 
  case of HIV transmitted  rape was recorded at a  hospital in                 
  London.                                                                      
                                                                               
  She explained that  the initial assumption behind  the first                 
  HIV testing laws was that if a victim knew the status of the                 
  offender, she  would therefore know  whether or not  she had                 
  been exposed to  HIV.  This  is not the case.   Particularly                 
  with a single test.  An offender may test negative and still                 
  be carrying HIV.  Conversely, a  positive test does not mean                 
  that a victim  will contract HIV.  In other  words, in order                 
  to  determine  her own  status, a  victim  will have  to get                 
  tested every three months for a  year.  Ms. Smith summarized                 
  that if the testing was performed at the time of charge, the                 
  Alaska Network on Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault would                 
  support  the  legislation,  however,  if   it  were  at  the                 
  conviction, the testing would serve no purpose.                              
                                                                               
  Representative Martin MOVED to report CS HB 109 (JUD) out of                 
  Committee  with  individual  recommendations  and  with  the                 
  accompanying fiscal notes.   There  being NO OBJECTIONS,  it                 
  was so ordered.                                                              
                                                                               
  CS  HB  109 (JUD)  was reported  out  of Committee  with "no                 
  recommendation" and with  fiscal notes by the  Department of                 
  Health  and Social and  Services, the Department  of Law and                 
  the Department of Corrections dated 3/19/93.                                 
  HOUSE BILL 67                                                                
                                                                               
                                                                               
                                6                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
       "An Act  relating to  eligibility for  and payments  of                 
       public  assistance;  and  providing  for  an  effective                 
       date."                                                                  
                                                                               
  MYRON NANENG,  CHAIRMAN, ALASKA FEDERATION OF  NATIVES, INC.                 
  RESOURCES   COMMITTEE,   BETHEL,   ALASKA,   testified   via                 
  teleconference and urged  that the  Committee oppose HB  67.                 
  [Attachment #1].                                                             
                                                                               
  KAREN  PERDUE,  ALASKA  INTERIOR  WOMEN'S POLITICAL  CAUCUS,                 
  FAIRBANKS, ALASKA, testified  in opposition to HB  67 noting                 
  in particular  those persons  affected by  discontinuing the                 
  COLA for Public Assistance.                                                  
                                                                               
  (Tape Change, HFC 93-87, Side 2].                                            
                                                                               
  JANE  ANGVIK,   CHAIR,  ALASKA  WOMEN'S   POLITICAL  CAUCUS,                 
  ANCHORAGE,   ALASKA, voiced  strong opposition to  HB 67 and                 
  the  elimination  of the  COLA  adjustment.   She  urged the                 
  Committee  to  suspend the  COLA  rather than  eliminate it.                 
  [Attachment #2].                                                             
                                                                               
  Handouts  were  provided  the  Committee  addressing HB  67.                 
  [Attachment #3 - #5].  Attachment #1 was a letter from Rural                 
  Alaska Community Action  Program, Inc.  in opposition to  HB
  67.  Attachment #4 was a letter from the Glory Hole, Juneau,                 
  Alaska, in opposition to  HB 67.  Attachment #5 was a letter                 
  from  the  Alaska  Head  Start   Directors'  Association  in                 
  opposition to HB 67.                                                         
                                                                               
  HB 67 was HELD in Committee for further discussion.                          
                                                                               
  ADJOURNMENT                                                                  
                                                                               
  The meeting adjourned at 10:05 A.M.                                          
                                                                               
                                                                               
                     HOUSE FINANCE COMMITTEE                                   
                          APRIL 1, 1993                                        
                            8:35 A.M.                                          
                                                                               
  TAPE HFC 93 - 86, Side 2, #000 - end.                                        
  TAPE HFC 93 - 87, Side 1, #000 - end.                                        
  TAPE HFC 93 - 87, Side 2, #000 - #105.                                       
                                                                               
  CALL TO ORDER                                                                
                                                                               
  Co-Chair Ron  Larson called the meeting of the House Finance                 
  Committee to order at 8:35 A.M.                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
                                7                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  PRESENT                                                                      
                                                                               
  Co-Chair Larson               Representative Brown                           
  Co-Chair MacLean              Representative Foster                          
  Vice-Chair Hanley             Representative Grussendorf                     
  Representative Hoffman        Representative Martin                          
  Representative Therriault     Representative Parnell                         
                                                                               
  Representative  Navarre was not present for the meeting.                     
                                                                               
  ALSO PRESENT                                                                 
                                                                               
  Jim  Forbes,  Assistant  Attorney   General,  Fair  Business                 
  Practice    Section;    Representative       Eldon   Mulder;                 
  Representative     Pat   Carney;   Jack   Phelps,   Aid   to                 
  Representative  Peter Kott; Cindy Smith, Executive Director,                 
  Alaska  Network on  Domestic  Violence  and Sexual  Assault,                 
  Juneau,  Alaska;  Myran  Naneng,  (teleconference),  Bethel,                 
  Alaska; Karen Perdue,  (teleconference), Fairbanks,  Alaska;                 
  Jane Angvik, (teleconference), Anchorage, Alaska.                            
                                                                               
  SUMMARY INFORMATION                                                          
                                                                               
  HB 67     An Act relating to eligibility for and payments of                 
            public assistance; and providing  for an effective                 
            date.                                                              
                                                                               
            HB   67   was  held   in  Committee   for  further                 
  discussion.                                                                  
                                                                               
  HB 109    An Act relating to blood tests for persons charged                 
            with sex offenses; and providing for an  effective                 
            date.                                                              
                                                                               
            CS HB 109 (JUD) was reported out of Committee with                 
            "no recommendation" and with  fiscal notes by  the                 
            Department  of  Health  and  Social Services,  the                 
            Department  of   Law   and   the   Department   of                 
            Corrections dated 3/19/93.                                         
                                                                               
  HB 113    An    Act    regulating   the    solicitation   of                 
            contributions by charitable organizations and paid                 
            solicitors  and  the  solicitation   of  sales  by                 
            telephonic  means; and  amending  Alaska Rules  of                 
            Civil Procedure 79 and 82.                                         
                                                                               
            HB  113   was  held   in  Committee   for  further                 
            discussion.                                                        
                                                                               
  HB 137    An Act  authorizing  special  medical  parole  for                 
            terminally ill prisoners.                                          
                                                                               
                                                                               
                                8                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
            CS HB 137 (JUD) was reported out of Committee with                 
            a  "do pass" recommendation  and with  zero fiscal                 
            notes  by  the  Department  of  Corrections  dated                 
            3/01/93 and the Department of Administration.                      
                                                                               
  HOUSE BILL 113                                                               
                                                                               
       "An Act regulating the solicitation of contributions by                 
       charitable  organizations and  paid solicitors  and the                 
       solicitation of sales by telephonic means; and amending                 
       Alaska Rules of Civil Procedure 79 and 82."                             
                                                                               
  Co-Chair Larson  commented that  HB  113 was  created in  an                 
  effort    to    regulate   telemarketers    and   charitable                 
  organizations who solicit donations by telephone.  There has                 
  been a dramatic  increase in fraudulent activity  in Alaska.                 
  With regulations adopted,  the public  would have a  renewed                 
  trust  in donating  to legitimate  charitable organizations.                 
  The immediate  distrust when  the telephone  rings would  be                 
  replaced with  a confidence  that a  person is  giving to  a                 
  regulated  charity and that  their money  would be  going to                 
  that organization and its charitable needs.                                  
                                                                               
  JAMES  FORBES,  ASSISTANT  ATTORNEY GENERAL,  FAIR  BUSINESS                 
  PRACTICES   SECTION,   JUNEAU,   ALASKA,   (teleconference),                 
  explained  that the  bill would  regulate solicitations  for                 
  telephonic  sales and charitable  fund raising.  These areas                 
  are  currently  unregulated.     State  consumer  protection                 
  investigators have noticed a dramatic increase in fraudulent                 
  activity in Alaska.   Most  states have adopted  legislation                 
  dealing with charitable solicitation fraud and telemarketing                 
  scams, although Alaska has  not.  As a result,  scam artists                 
  are avoiding  those regulated states, and  are concentrating                 
  their activities on unregulated states  which cause the loss                 
  of millions of dollars each year.                                            
                                                                               
  The legislation would provide:                                               
                                                                               
       1.   Regulation of Telemarketers.                                       
       2.   Regulation of Charitable Solicitations.                            
       3.   Relation to Consumer Protection Law.                               
       4.   Full Costs and Attorney's Fees.                                    
                                                                               
  Co-Chair MacLean  stated that  many Native  people in  rural                 
  areas sell their  handiwork to others  over the phone.   She                 
  asked how  the legislation  would affect  them.  Mr.  Forbes                 
  stated  that  if those  individuals  were not  selling their                 
  goods   telephonically,   they   would   be   excused   from                 
  registering.    He  added,  there  is  no  fee  required for                 
  registration.  If the  actual sale of the product  will take                 
  place after the telephonic meeting between the buyer and the                 
  seller, they again would be excused from registration.                       
                                                                               
                                9                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  Co-Chair MacLean  asked  how the  small  cottage  industries                 
  would  be affected by  the legislation.   Mr.  Forbes stated                 
  that they would be  required to register if they  sell their                 
  handcrafts by telephone.                                                     
                                                                               
  Mr.  Forbes  commented   on  the  advertising   registration                 
  requirement for public  radio stations who do  fund raising,                 
  emphasizing that the filing system is not difficult.                         
                                                                               
  Representative  Foster  felt that the legislation  would not                 
  receive compliance  in the  small village  areas of  Western                 
  Alaska.  Representative   Brown  recommended placing HB  213                 
  into  Subcommittee  to  develop  an  amendment  which  would                 
  address the village  area people  who sell small  handicraft                 
  projects.  Co-Chair  MacLean suggested that the  language on                 
  Page  5, Lines  22  - 26  currently addresses  that concern.                 
  Representative  Brown  reminded the  Committee that many  of                 
  the small village  areas do not  make the sale with  face to                 
  face contact and consequently they  would be in violation of                 
  the legislation if they had not registered.                                  
                                                                               
  Mr. Forbes  acknowledged that  the State  would  need to  be                 
  cautious in  providing a  blanket exemption  to rural  areas                 
  within the State.  He reminded the Committee that the people                 
  who commit  the worst  fraud crimes  are soliciting  between                 
  $300 - $500  hundred dollars.   Representative   Grussendorf                 
  asked  if there were any  "resale loopholes" for the smaller                 
  regions.  Mr. Forbes stated that concept would  be used as a                 
  disadvantage for the legislation.                                            
                                                                               
  Co-Chair Larson emphasized the need for consumer  protection                 
  and   urged   that   the  legislation   not   be   weakened.                 
  Representative  Hoffman  recommended an exclusion  clause be                 
  added for Alaska handicrafts.                                                
                                                                               
  Representative    Brown questioned  the  impact of  the zero                 
  fiscal note.  Mr. Forbes replied, currently a lot of time is                 
  spent on chasing  people who  are difficult to  catch.   The                 
  legislation   will  make   that   time   spent  much   less.                 
  Representative  Foster  asked why  a person would  register.                 
  Mr. Forbes replied  that if a  person fails to register  and                 
  they are caught stealing money, they  will be charged with a                 
  Class C felony.                                                              
                                                                               
  HB 213 was HELD in Committee for further discussion.                         
                                                                               
  (Tape Charge, HFC 93-86, Side 1).                                            
                                                                               
  HOUSE BILL 137                                                               
                                                                               
       "An  Act   authorizing  special   medical  parole   for                 
                                                                               
                               10                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
       terminally ill prisoners."                                              
                                                                               
  REPRESENTATIVE ELDON MULDER stated that HB 137 would provide                 
  special medical parole  for terminally  ill prisoners.   The                 
  Department  of  Corrections  is  responsible  for   inmates'                 
  medical costs as long as they  remain in custody.  He added,                 
  covering  health  costs  is  a   serious  financial  burden,                 
  particularly when a terminal illness is involved.                            
                                                                               
  The bill would give the parole board the discretion to grant                 
  special medical parole  for terminally ill patients  that it                 
  determines are not a threat to society.  Once paroled, their                 
  medical costs are  picked up by  Medicare or Medicaid,  thus                 
  easing   the   financial  burden   on   the   Department  of                 
  Corrections.                                                                 
                                                                               
  Co-Chair  Larson  asked   who  decides  if  a   prisoner  is                 
  terminally ill.   Representative   Mulder said the  decision                 
  would be make by a common consensus of physicians.                           
                                                                               
  Representative    Foster  MOVED  to  report  HB 137  out  of                 
  Committee  with  individual  recommendations  and  with  the                 
  accompanying zero fiscal notes.   There being NO OBJECTIONS,                 
  it was so ordered.                                                           
                                                                               
  CS  HB 137  (JUD) was reported  out of Committee  with a "do                 
  pass" recommendation and  with two zero fiscal notes  by the                 
  Department of Corrections  dated 3/01/93 and the  Department                 
  of Administration.                                                           
                                                                               
  HOUSE BILL 109                                                               
                                                                               
       "An Act  relating to  blood tests  for persons  charged                 
       with sex  offenses;  and  providing  for  an  effective                 
       date."                                                                  
                                                                               
  JACK PHELPS, AID  TO REPRESENTATIVE  PETE KOTT, stated  that                 
  the purpose of  HB 109 is to provide an avenue of relief for                 
  victims of sexual assault.  The  threat of HIV infection and                 
  of infection from  other sexually transmitted diseases  is a                 
  serious  complicated  side-effect  of  being  victimized  by                 
  sexual  assault.   The State  has a  compelling interest  in                 
  assuring innocent victims  of crime, timely relief  from the                 
  anxiety that may result from sexual assault.                                 
                                                                               
  HB 109 allows the  victim of sexual assault to  petition the                 
  court  to  require  a blood  test  on  the  defendant.   The                 
  legislation  also  provides  that  the  State must  make  it                 
  available to both  the victim  and the alleged  perpetrator,                 
  upon  their  request, counseling  relating  to HIV  and AIDS                 
  which  is  medically  appropriate  for  those  persons,  and                 
  referrals for medical and support services.                                  
                                                                               
                               11                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  The  legislation is  designed to  minimize the  cost to  the                 
  State  for implementing the  program.   If the  defendant is                 
  convicted, he or she  must reimburse the state for  the cost                 
  of  the  test.    The  court  may order  the  Department  of                 
  Corrections  to   provide  for  the   reimbursement  through                 
  garnishment.                                                                 
                                                                               
  The  Federal Crime Control Act of 1990 specified that states                 
  must have a  law such as  HB 109 adopted  or they will  lose                 
  part  of  their  law  enforcement  assistance grants.    The                 
  deadline established by Congress is  October, 1993.  If  the                 
  bill fails  to pass,  Alaska's Department  of Public  Safety                 
  will lose approximately $185 thousand dollars in FY 94.  The                 
  bill can  satisfy the federal requirement and simultaneously                 
  form an integral part  of an effort by  the State to  ensure                 
  that victims  of  crime  in  our state  are  afforded  every                 
  opportunity to receive appropriate relief.                                   
                                                                               
  He concluded, the legislation tried to balance the rights of                 
  the victim against the rights of  the defendant.  He pointed                 
  out that cause  finding is required  which will require  the                 
  State to demonstrate  that there is  a probable cause.   The                 
  court  is   now  required   to  provide   a  confidentiality                 
  statement.  There are portions of the bill which protect the                 
  clients privacy.  He added, the purpose of the exemption for                 
  disclosure  by the victim would allow those persons, who the                 
  victim  has  close   associations  with  to  be   given  the                 
  information.   He reminded  the Committee  that the  subject                 
  matter  contains  the  potential for  disease  and  that the                 
  victim has the right to tell those who they are close with.                  
                                                                               
  Representative   Brown  pointed  out that  a  test does  not                 
  assure if a person is infected.  It could take from a six to                 
  eight month period for  the presence of HIV to  appear, even                 
  though continuing to  transmit the  virus.  She  recommended                 
  providing   services  to  help   the  victim  address  their                 
  situation.  The test would not solve the problem.                            
                                                                               
  CINDY SMITH, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR,  ALASKA NETWORK ON DOMESTIC                 
  VIOLENCE AND SEXUAL ASSAULT, JUNEAU, ALASKA, stated that the                 
  network has been  investigating and discussing the  issue of                 
  mandatory STD testing for persons  charged with sex offenses                 
  for over two  years.   The issue is  complex and  emotional.                 
  Literature   on  the   subject   is  minimal,   occasionally                 
  contradictory, often defending one position  or the other in                 
  the competing social  interests of protecting a  rape victim                 
  and  protecting  the  persons  infected  with  the  sexually                 
  transmitted diseases, especially HIV.                                        
                                                                               
  Transmission of STD's as  a result of rape is  not uncommon.                 
  It  is  currently standard  procedure  at most  hospitals to                 
                                                                               
                               12                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  provide a rape  victim with  a course of  antibiotics as  an                 
  automatic measure without waiting for  information as to the                 
  status  of the offender.   The  Center for  Disease Control,                 
  AIDS Epidemiology Division  estimates that the chances  of a                 
  rape victim contracting HIV  as a result of an assault to be                 
  very  low  but admits  that the  figure  could be  higher in                 
  multiple exposure and that even  single rapes may constitute                 
  a  greater hazard because of the  rather common occupance of                 
  tearing  of vaginal surfaces.  In 1990, the first documented                 
  case of HIV transmitted  rape was recorded at a  hospital in                 
  London.                                                                      
                                                                               
  She explained that  the initial assumption behind  the first                 
  HIV testing laws was that if a victim knew the status of the                 
  offender, she  would therefore know  whether or not  she had                 
  been exposed to HIV.   This is not  the case.   Particularly                 
  with a single test.  An offender may test negative and still                 
  be carrying HIV.  Conversely, a  positive test does not mean                 
  that a  victim will contract HIV.   In other words, in order                 
  to  determine  her own  status, a  victim  will have  to get                 
  tested every three months for a  year.  Ms. Smith summarized                 
  that if the testing was performed at the time of charge, the                 
  Alaska Network on Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault would                 
  support  the  legislation,  however,  if   it  were  at  the                 
  conviction, the testing would serve no purpose.                              
                                                                               
  Representative Martin MOVED to report CS HB 109 (JUD) out of                 
  Committee  with  individual  recommendations  and  with  the                 
  accompanying fiscal notes.   There  being NO OBJECTIONS,  it                 
  was so ordered.                                                              
                                                                               
  CS  HB  109 (JUD)  was reported  out  of Committee  with "no                 
  recommendation" and with  fiscal notes by the  Department of                 
  Health and Social  and Services, the  Department of Law  and                 
  the Department of Corrections dated 3/19/93.                                 
                                                                               
  HOUSE BILL 67                                                                
                                                                               
       "An Act  relating to  eligibility for  and payments  of                 
       public  assistance;  and  providing  for  an  effective                 
       date."                                                                  
                                                                               
  MYRON NANENG, CHAIRMAN, ALASKA  FEDERATION OF NATIVES,  INC.                 
  RESOURCES   COMMITTEE,   BETHEL,   ALASKA,   testified   via                 
  teleconference and urged  that the  Committee oppose HB  67.                 
  [Attachment #1].                                                             
                                                                               
  KAREN  PERDUE,  ALASKA  INTERIOR WOMEN'S  POLITICAL  CAUCUS,                 
  FAIRBANKS, ALASKA, testified  in opposition to HB  67 noting                 
  in particular  those persons  affected by discontinuing  the                 
  COLA for Public Assistance.                                                  
                                                                               
                                                                               
                               13                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  (Tape Change, HFC 93-87, Side 2].                                            
                                                                               
  JANE  ANGVIK,   CHAIR,  ALASKA  WOMEN'S   POLITICAL  CAUCUS,                 
  ANCHORAGE,  ALASKA,  voiced strong opposition  to HB 67  and                 
  the  elimination of  the  COLA adjustment.    She urged  the                 
  Committee  to  suspend the  COLA  rather than  eliminate it.                 
  [Attachment #2].                                                             
                                                                               
  Handouts  were  provided  the  Committee  addressing HB  67.                 
  [Attachment #3 - #5].  Attachment #1 was a letter from Rural                 
  Alaska Community Action  Program, Inc.  in opposition to  HB
  67.  Attachment #4 was a letter from the Glory Hole, Juneau,                 
  Alaska, in opposition to HB 67.  Attachment #5  was a letter                 
  from  the  Alaska  Head  Start   Directors'  Association  in                 
  opposition to HB 67.                                                         
                                                                               
  HB 67 was HELD in Committee for further discussion.                          
                                                                               
                                                                               
  ADJOURNMENT                                                                  
                                                                               
  The meeting adjourned at 10:05 A.M.                                          
                                                                               
                                                                               
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