Legislature(1993 - 1994)

04/13/1993 08:30 AM FIN

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
txt
                                                                               
                                                                               
                     HOUSE FINANCE COMMITTEE                                   
                         April 13, 1993                                        
                            8:30 a.m.                                          
                                                                               
  TAPE HFC 93-102, Side 1, #000 - end.                                         
  TAPE HFC 93-102, Side 2, #000 - 622.                                         
                                                                               
  CALL TO ORDER                                                                
                                                                               
  Co-Chair Larson called the House  Finance Committee to order                 
  at 8:30 a.m.                                                                 
                                                                               
  PRESENT                                                                      
                                                                               
  Co-Chair Larson                                                              
  Co-Chair MacLean            Representative Martin                            
  Vice-Chair Hanley           Representative Parnell                           
  Representative Brown                                                         
  Representative Foster                                                        
  Representative Grussendorf                                                   
                                                                               
  Representatives Hoffman, Navarre and  Therriault were absent                 
  from the meeting.                                                            
                                                                               
  ALSO PRESENT                                                                 
                                                                               
  Representative Hudson; Kim Elton, Executive Director, Alaska                 
  Seafood  Marketing  Institute;  Dean  Paddock,  Bristol  Bay                 
  Driftnetters Association; Jerry McCune, United Fishermen  of                 
  Alaska;  Kate Troll,  Southeast Alaska  Seiners Association;                 
  Cindy  Smith,  Network  on   Domestic  Violence  and  Sexual                 
  Assault; Marcia  McKenzie, Council on  Domestic Violence and                 
  Sexual Assault; Paul Dick, Department of Revenue.                            
                                                                               
  SUMMARY INFORMATION                                                          
                                                                               
  HB 54     "An  Act  relating  to   eavesdropping,  telephone                 
            caller  identification,  and  telephone  directory                 
            listings and solicitations."                                       
                                                                               
            CSHB 54 (L&C) was reported out of Committee with a                 
            "do pass" recommendation  and with  a zero  fiscal                 
            note by  the Department  of Commerce and  Economic                 
            Development, dated 3/17/93.                                        
                                                                               
  HB 212    "An Act relating to a factor in aggravation of the                 
            presumptive  term  of  a  criminal  sentence,  and                 
            prohibiting  the referral  of a sentence  based on                 
            application  of  that  factor   to  a  three-judge                 
            sentencing    panel     as    an     extraordinary                 
            circumstance."                                                     
                                                                               
            CSHB 212 (JUD) was reported  out of Committee with                 
            a  "do pass"  recommendation and  with three  zero                 
                                                                               
                                                                               
            fiscal  notes by  the Alaska  Court  System, dated                 
            4/5/93; Department of  Corrections, dated  4/5/93;                 
            Department of Law, dated 4/5/93; and with two zero                 
            fiscal notes by the  Department of Administration,                 
            dated 4/5/93.                                                      
                                                                               
  HB 275    "An  Act  relating to  salmon marketing,  a salmon                 
            marketing tax,  and the  Alaska Seafood  Marketing                 
            Institute; and providing for an effective date."                   
                                                                               
       HB 275 was HELD in Committee.                                           
  HOUSE BILL NO. 212                                                           
                                                                               
       "An  Act relating  to a  factor in  aggravation of  the                 
       presumptive   term   of   a   criminal  sentence,   and                 
       prohibiting  the  referral  of   a  sentence  based  on                 
       application of that factor to a three-judge  sentencing                 
       panel as an extraordinary circumstance."                                
                                                                               
  Co-Chair MacLean explained that  the intent of HB 212  is to                 
  insure  offenders  receive  the most  serious  sentences for                 
  sexual abuse against a minor in  cases where the offender is                 
  in  a position of authority to  the minor or the minor lives                 
  in the same household.                                                       
                                                                               
  Co-Chair MacLean pointed  out that the bill adds  an element                 
  of sexual abuse of a minor crimes to the list of aggravators                 
  considered at  sentencing.   In addition,  section 2  of the                 
  bill  furthers a similar  effort of the  1992 legislature in                 
  adding this crime to  the list of crimes not  to be referred                 
  to the three judge panel.                                                    
                                                                               
  Co-Chair MacLean emphasized that an offender  would be in an                 
  established trust relationship  with a minor.   She asserted                 
  that the most serious of  sentencing provisions should apply                 
  in this  situation.  She noted that it is more difficult for                 
  a  child  to defend  him  or  herself, both  physically  and                 
  verbally, from  someone  in a  position of  authority.   She                 
  maintained  that  it   is  the  vulnerable  nature   of  the                 
  relationship that warrants more severe punishment.                           
                                                                               
  Co-Chair MacLean felt that  it is more suitable to  add this                 
  form of crime to  the aggravator list rather than  create an                 
  entirely different crime  category.  This would  ensure that                 
  offenders receive  the most severe  sentence possible  under                 
  the existing ranges for these crimes.                                        
                                                                               
  Co-Chair MacLean noted that the Judiciary Committee made two                 
  technical changes to the bill on  page 3.  On line 16,  they                 
  deleted a  reference to 11.41.  440 which relates  to sexual                 
  abuse of a minor in the 4th degree, a misdemeanor  crime and                 
  not  subject  to  felony  sentencing.    They  also  removed                 
  language  on  lines  17-18,  which  was redundant  to  other                 
                                                                               
                                                                               
  provisions of this section.                                                  
                                                                               
  Representative Brown MOVED to report  CSHB 212 (JUD) out  of                 
  Committee  with  individual  recommendations  and  with  the                 
  accompanying fiscal notes.  There being NO OBJECTION, it was                 
  so ordered.                                                                  
                                                                               
  CSHB 212  (JUD) was  reported out  of Committee  with a  "do                 
  pass" recommendation and with three zero fiscal notes by the                 
  Alaska   Court   System,   dated   4/5/93;   Department   of                 
  Corrections, dated 4/5/93; Department of Law, dated  4/5/93;                 
  and  with  two  zero  fiscal  notes  by  the  Department  of                 
  Administration, dated 4/5/93.                                                
  HOUSE BILL NO. 54                                                            
                                                                               
       "An  Act relating  to  eavesdropping, telephone  caller                 
       identification,  and  telephone directory  listings and                 
       solicitations."                                                         
                                                                               
  Representative   Brown   explained  that   telephone  caller                 
  identification is  a new  service  that will  be offered  in                 
  Alaska.  House  Bill 54 mandates that  there must be a  free                 
  opportunity for consumers that do not want to participate to                 
  block  their  line.   She  maintained that  the  new service                 
  raises  privacy  implications.    She  noted  that  unlisted                 
  numbers  would be diverged.  She noted that persons involved                 
  in domestic violence, police activities and physicians might                 
  need to have the caller identification blocked.                              
                                                                               
  Representative Brown noted  that telephone companies  desire                 
  that per  call blocking  be required.    She explained  that                 
  callers would  be required  to dial  a series  of additional                 
  numbers in order  to block the  caller identification.   She                 
  felt that this process would be burdensome.                                  
                                                                               
  Representative Brown emphasized  that harassing phone  calls                 
  would be  better addressed through  call trace.   Call trace                 
  would alert  the police  department when  a harassing  phone                 
  call is made.  She added that call reject, priority ring and                 
  call block could be used to prevent unwanted calls.                          
                                                                               
  Representative Brown felt the cost of  the service should be                 
  born by those  that want the service and not  consumers as a                 
  whole.                                                                       
                                                                               
  Representative Martin  asked who  would pay  for blocking  a                 
  number out.   Representative Brown answered that  the charge                 
  for blocking would be  covered out of the cost of those that                 
  prescribe for  the service.   She stressed that  knowing the                 
  phone number  of the  person calling  would not  necessarily                 
  indicate that the call will be harassing.                                    
                                                                               
  Representative Hanley felt that there should be a charge for                 
                                                                               
                                                                               
  individuals  that  have  opted into  the  service  and later                 
  decides to opt out of the service.                                           
                                                                               
  CINDY SMITH,  DIRECTOR, ALASKA NETWORK  ON DOMESTIC VIOLENCE                 
  AND SEXUAL ASSAULT referred to problems associated with call                 
  identification.  She  stressed that  Ms. Smith diverges  the                 
  location of shelters, counselors and sexual assault victims.                 
  It also prevents  contact by counselors and  volunteers from                 
  contacting  victims in their  homes.  It  also affects "safe                 
  homes".  She noted  that many states that did  not institute                 
  regulations   have   found   it   necessary   to   institute                 
  regulations.  She stated that the Alaska Network on Domestic                 
  Violence  and  Sexual  Assault  is  greatly  concerned  that                 
  blocking  be allowed  for  Ms. Smith.    She clarified,  for                 
  Representative Martin,  that shelters do not collect numbers                 
  of those that call the shelters.                                             
                                                                               
  MARCIA  MCKENZIE, PROGRAM  COORDINATOR, COUNCIL  ON DOMESTIC                 
  VIOLENCE  AND  SEXUAL  ASSAULT stated  that  the  Council is                 
  concern that volunteer safe homes would be placed in danger.                 
  She noted that problems have  occurred in other states  that                 
  have instituted caller  identification without offering  the                 
  ability to block the  service.  She did not support  the per                 
  dial blocking.                                                               
                                                                               
  Representative Martin asked if the  legislation is needed to                 
  have their  number blocked.   Ms. McKenzie  stated that  the                 
  legislation  mandates  that the  service be  offered without                 
  charge.                                                                      
                                                                               
  Representative Martin  expressed concern  that the  original                 
  intention  of  allowing  consumers  to  know the  number  of                 
  harassing  phone  calls is  being  nullified.   Ms. McKenzie                 
  reiterated  that  phone tracing  would  allow the  police to                 
  identify harassing phone calls.                                              
                                                                               
  Co-Chair MacLean  MOVED  to  report CSHB  54  (L&C)  out  of                 
  Committee  with  individual  recommendations  and  with  the                 
  accompanying fiscal note.  There being NO  OBJECTION, it was                 
  so ordered.                                                                  
                                                                               
  CSHB 54 (L&C) was reported out of Committee with a "do pass"                 
  recommendation and with a zero fiscal note by the Department                 
  of Commerce and Economic Development, dated 3/17/93.                         
  HOUSE BILL NO. 275                                                           
                                                                               
       "An  Act  relating   to  salmon  marketing,   a  salmon                 
       marketing  tax,  and   the  Alaska  Seafood   Marketing                 
       Institute; and providing for an effective date."                        
                                                                               
  REPRESENTATIVE  BILL  HUDSON  explained that  HB  275  would                 
  impose a  1  percent  salmon  marketing tax  on  all  salmon                 
  harvested in Alaskan  waters.   He emphasized that  although                 
                                                                               
                                                                               
  the  fishing community  is not  in complete  support  of the                 
  increased  tax  there  seems  to  be  a  consensus  that  an                 
  increased, expanded and more  aggressive marketing system is                 
  needed.    He  stressed that  farmed  salmon  production has                 
  increased.  He discussed salmon varieties.                                   
                                                                               
  Representative Hudson noted  that HB 275 changes  the Alaska                 
  Seafood Marketing Institute Board's  composition.  Under  HB
  275   the  Board  would  consist  of  12  fishermen  and  12                 
  processors.  He asserted that HB 275 creates a new emphasize                 
  on world marketing.                                                          
                                                                               
  Representative Hudson observed that there is a Raw Fish  Tax                 
  assessment.    He   added  that   fishermen  pay  a   Salmon                 
  Enhancement Tax  of one  to three  percent.   He noted  that                 
  there has been a  request by seiners to allow a reduction of                 
  their Salmon Enhancement Tax from 3 to 2 percent.                            
                                                                               
  Representative  Hudson stated that the  1 percent tax on all                 
  permit  holders  would generate  $5.7  million dollars.   He                 
  provided members with Work Draft, 8-LSO341\R (Attachment 1).                 
  He discussed provisions of HB 275 as provided in a sectional                 
  analysis by Legal  Counsel, dated April 8,  1993 (Attachment                 
  2).  He review changes by the work draft (Attachment 3).  He                 
  reviewed back-up  materials provided to  members (copies  on                 
  file).                                                                       
                                                                               
  PAUL  DICK,  DEPARTMENT  OF  REVENUE   emphasized  that  the                 
  Department of Revenue anticipates that $5.75 million dollars                 
  will be collected from the 1 percent tax.  He added that the                 
  collection   program  would   be  similar   to  the   Salmon                 
  Enhancement  Tax which  the  Department of  Revenue  already                 
  collects.                                                                    
                                                                               
  Representative Martin asked  why the  Department of  Revenue                 
  needs new positions.                                                         
                                                                               
  (Tape Change, HFC 93-102, Side 2)                                            
                                                                               
  Mr.  Dick  explained  that   the  Department  has  requested                 
  positions for data  entry and preliminary examinations.   He                 
  stated that no new audit positions are requested.                            
                                                                               
  Mr.  Dick  clarified,   in  response  to  a   question  from                 
  Representative Hanley,  that the  Salmon Enhancement  Tax is                 
  provided for in AS 43.76.  He  added that HB 275 would add a                 
  new subsection.   He explained  that the Salmon  Enhancement                 
  Tax is a self imposed tax by limited entry permit holders.                   
                                                                               
  Representative Hanley asked if members  can vote to decrease                 
  the tax.  Mr. Dick thought that they  could vote to increase                 
  or decrease the tax.                                                         
                                                                               
  KATE TROLL, SOUTHEAST ALASKA SEINERS (SEAS) stated that SEAS                 
                                                                               
                                                                               
  does not support the one percent tax.  She felt that seiners                 
  cannot afford an additional 1 percent.  She observed that an                 
  average seiner skipper  nets $11,000.   She maintained  that                 
  the tax represents 8 - 10 percent  of the net.  She asserted                 
  that the seiner fleet is struggling.  She stressed that some                 
  boats could be tied up if the tax is added.                                  
                                                                               
  Ms. Troll was in support of the marketing aspect of  HB 275.                 
  She discussed  the  possibility of  decreasing their  Salmon                 
  Enhancement Tax.   She maintained that permit  holders would                 
  have to be  a vote to terminate the tax and  then hold a new                 
  vote to establish  a tax at the  lower level.  She  stressed                 
  that if marketing works for the  fishermen that it will also                 
  work for the  aquaculture associations.   She asserted  that                 
  hatchery  programs  will  recoup  their  immediate  loss  in                 
  revenues.                                                                    
                                                                               
  Ms. Troll suggested  an amendment to allow  the Commissioner                 
  of  Department  of  Commerce  and  Economic  Development  to                 
  guarantee loan collateration (Attachment 4).                                 
                                                                               
  Representative  Martin  noted  that other  tax  increases to                 
  fishermen will  result in  an over  all tax  increase of  16                 
  percent.  Ms. Troll added that the tax paid by processors is                 
  passed on to the fishermen.                                                  
                                                                               
  Ms.  Troll  clarified,  in  response   to  a  question  from                 
  Representative Martin, parity  of the  Board is the  primary                 
  concern of fishermen, in regards to the Board's make-up.                     
                                                                               
  KIM  ELTON,  DIRECTOR,  ALASKA  SEAFOOD MARKETING  INSTITUTE                 
  (ASMI) spoke in  support of HB 275.  He anticipated that the                 
  bill would have resulted in revenues of:                                     
                                                                               
       *    $3.1 million dollars in 1991 and;                                  
                                                                               
       *    $5.75 million dollars in 1992.                                     
                                                                               
  Mr. Elton  estimated  1993 revenues  at  $3 -  $5.5  million                 
  dollars.  He noted  that an average of $400  hundred dollars                 
  would  be  paid  by a  harvester  grossing  $40,000 thousand                 
  dollar.    Revenues will  be  used to  supplement processing                 
  revenue.   The 1  percent tax will  be used in  the domestic                 
  market  exclusively for  salmon.   He  noted that  section 5                 
  provides that marketing  data will be provided  to fishermen                 
  groups.  He added that ASMI  will provide information to all                 
  groups.                                                                      
                                                                               
  Representative  Brown  asked  if  the  1 percent  tax  would                 
  displace  currently  used  general  fund  dollars or  be  an                 
  increase of the current  level of state support.   Mr. Elton                 
  stated that he envisioned that general fund dollars would be                 
  supplemented rather than  supplanted.  He stressed  that the                 
  fishery resource is owned and managed by the state.  He felt                 
                                                                               
                                                                               
  that there is a state obligation to participate in the joint                 
  marketing of the common resources.                                           
                                                                               
  Representative Brown noted  that there is no  insurance that                 
  additional funds will be appropriated.  She asked if the tax                 
  would be collected once.  Mr. Elton thought that it would be                 
  collected only once.  Representative Brown expressed concern                 
  that that processors would have to pay the tax when fish are                 
  transferred a second  time.   Mr. Dick stated  that the  tax                 
  would only be collected once.   He felt that the legislation                 
  would be  clear as to  the collection  of the tax.   Members                 
  further discussed the tax collection process.                                
                                                                               
  JERRY MCCUNE, PRESIDENT,  UNITED FISHERMEN  OF ALASKA  (UFA)                 
  clarified that only individuals can own a permit.  He stated                 
  that floaters that freeze fish on  board and leave the state                 
  would still be responsible to pay the tax.  He observed that                 
  the Enhancement Tax is collected the same way.                               
                                                                               
  DEAN  PADDOCK, BRISTOL BAY DRIFTNETTERS ASSOCIATION spoke in                 
  of HB 275.   He stressed that  fishermen are willing  to put                 
  money in support  of marketing.   He reviewed taxes paid  by                 
  Bristol  Bay  fishermen.   He  concluded  that  they  pay 10                 
  percent in  tax.    He  felt that  the  1  percent  tax  for                 
  marketing would do  more good than all the  other taxes.  He                 
  noted the affect of Russian and farmed salmon on the market.                 
  He emphasized that  the Raw Fish  Tax is collected from  the                 
  processors but  paid by  the fishermen.   He indicated  that                 
  markets need to be expanded.   He stressed that if fishermen                 
  are  going to  pay they want  to play  an important  role in                 
  deciding how the money they contribute will be spent.                        
                                                                               
  Mr. McCune stressed that UFA is split on the legislation.                    
  Representative   Hudson   recommended  that   the  amendment                 
  suggested  by  SEAS be  considered.    Representative Hudson                 
  added  that the effective  dates of section  8 and 9  of the                 
  work draft should be changed to 1998 and 1999 respectively.                  
                                                                               
  Representative Hanley MOVED to ADOPT Work Draft, 8-LSO341\R.                 
  There being NO OBJECTION, it was so ordered.                                 
                                                                               
  Representative Hanley MOVED to delete "1999" on page 6, line                 
  3 and insert "1998"; and to delete  "2000" on page 6, line 7                 
  and insert  "1999".   There being  NO OBJECTION,  it was  so                 
  ordered.                                                                     
                                                                               
  Representative Hanley  discussed the  amendment proposed  by                 
  SEAS.  He felt that further drafting was needed.                             
                                                                               
  Representative Brown MOVED to insert "to the public" on page                 
  3, line 30.  There being NO OBJECTION, it was so ordered.                    
                                                                               
  CSHB 275 (FIN) was held in committee.  Representative Hanley                 
  noted that he is a fishermen.                                                
                                                                               
                                                                               
  ADJOURNMENT                                                                  
                                                                               
  The meeting adjourned at 10:00 a.m.                                          

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