Legislature(1995 - 1996)

05/02/1996 02:00 PM FIN

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
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                     HOUSE FINANCE COMMITTEE                                   
                           MAY 2, 1996                                         
                            2:00 P.M.                                          
                                                                               
  TAPE HFC 96 - 156, Side 1, #000 - #631.                                      
                                                                               
  CALL TO ORDER                                                                
                                                                               
  Co-Chair  Mark Hanley  called  the  House Finance  Committee                 
  meeting to order at 2:00 P.M.                                                
                                                                               
  PRESENT                                                                      
                                                                               
  Co-Chair Hanley               Representative Martin                          
  Co-Chair Foster               Representative Mulder                          
  Representative Brown          Representative Navarre                         
  Representative Grussendorf    Representative Parnell                         
  Representative Kelly          Representative Therriault                      
  Representative Kohring                                                       
                                                                               
  ALSO PRESENT                                                                 
                                                                               
  John  Walsh, Staff,  Representative Richard  Foster; Allison                 
  Gordon,  Staff,   Senator  Steve   Frank;  Anne   Carpeneti,                 
  Assistant Attorney General, Department of Law; Diane Worley,                 
  Director,  Division of Family and Youth Services, Department                 
  of   Health   and  Social   Services;   Del   Smith,  Deputy                 
  Commissioner, Department of Public Safety; Catherine  Massa,                 
  (Testified  via  teleconference),  Student,   University  of                 
  Alaska, Anchorage; Louise Charles, JOBS Program Coordinator,                 
  Tanana Chiefs  Conference, Inc., Fairbanks;  Lauree Hugonin,                 
  Executive Director, Alaska Network  on Domestic Violence and                 
  Sexual Assault, Juneau.                                                      
                                                                               
  SUMMARY                                                                      
                                                                               
  SB 52     An Act authorizing capital punishment, classifying                 
            murder in the  first degree  as a capital  felony,                 
            and establishing sentencing procedures for capital                 
            felonies;   authorizing   an   advisory  vote   on                 
            instituting capital punishment; and  providing for                 
            an effective date.                                                 
                                                                               
            SB  52  was rescheduled  for  hearing at  a latter                 
            date.                                                              
                                                                               
  SB 98     An  Act  making  changes  related  to the  aid  to                 
            families  with  dependent  children  program,  the                 
            Medicaid  program,  the general  relief assistance                 
            program, and the  adult public assistance program;                 
            directing  the  Department  of  Health and  Social                 
                                                                               
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            Services to  apply to  the federal government  for                 
            waivers to implement the changes where  necessary;                 
            relating   to   eligibility  for   permanent  fund                 
            dividends of certain individuals who receive state                 
            assistance, to notice  requirements applicable  to                 
            the  dividend   program;  and  providing   for  an                 
            effective date.                                                    
                                                                               
            SB  98   was   HELD  in   Committee  for   further                 
            discussion.                                                        
                                                                               
  SB 289    An  Act  relating  to  runaway  minors  and  their                 
            families or legal custodians.                                      
                                                                               
            HCS CS SB 289 (FIN)  was reported out of Committee                 
  with           a "do  pass" recommendation  and with  fiscal                 
                 notes  by  the Department  of Administration,                 
                 (3) by  the Department of  Health and  Social                 
                 Services,  the  Department  of  Law, and  the                 
                 Alaska Court System.                                          
                                                                               
  SCR 23    Relating to long range financial planning.                         
                                                                               
            SCR 23  was rescheduled  for hearing  at a  latter                 
            date.                                                              
                                                                               
  HB 500    An  Act making  capital and  other appropriations;                 
            and providing for an effective date.                               
                                                                               
            HB   500  was  HELD   in  Committee   for  further                 
            discussion.                                                        
  HOUSE BILL 500                                                               
                                                                               
       "An Act making  capital and  other appropriations;  and                 
       providing for an effective date."                                       
                                                                               
  Co-Chair Foster  provided Committee  members with  a handout                 
  analysis.  [Copy on file].   He asked members to provide any                 
  proposed  amendments   to  his  office.     Co-Chair  Hanley                 
  clarified that the  handout listed all  the reappropriation.                 
  He added that a version of the bill from the Senate would be                 
  received  in  the  House Finance  Committee  soon  and would                 
  include the  capital  budget and  the reappropriation  list.                 
  The list currently available includes all requests turned in                 
  to date.                                                                     
                                                                               
  JOHN WALSH, STAFF, REPRESENTATIVE RICHARD FOSTER, reiterated                 
  that all amendments  should be submitted  by the evening  of                 
  May 2, 1996.                                                                 
                                                                               
  HB 500 was HELD in Committee for further consideration.                      
                                                                               
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  SENATE BILL 289                                                              
                                                                               
       "An Act relating  to runaway minors and  their families                 
       or legal custodians."                                                   
                                                                               
  ALLISON  GORDON,  STAFF, SENATOR  STEVE FRANK,  provided the                 
  Committee  with  a  work  draft   for  SB  289,  9-LS1635\J,                 
  Lauterbach, 5/2/96.  [Copy  on file].  She pointed  out that                 
  the  version  before  the Committee  was  a  compromise with                 
  Senator Frank, the  Department of Law and  the Department of                 
  Health and Social Services.  Ms. Gordon provided a sectional                 
  analysis of the proposed legislation.                                        
                                                                               
  Page 2, Subsection (4) contains  new language recommended by                 
  the  Department  of Law  in  regard to  contributing  to the                 
  delinquency  of  a  minor.   Changes  would  be  to Page  3,                 
  Subsection (1) resulting from concerns within the Department                 
  of Public Safety in returning a  minor run-away home and the                 
  distance necessary to drive in  order to return that person.                 
  Language has been added to address that concern.                             
                                                                               
  Ms. Gordon noted the change to Page 3,  Line 19 and 20.  The                 
  new  language  would give  officers  permission to  take the                 
  child to the Division of Family and Youth Services (DFYS) if                 
  they had reasonable cause to believe that the child had been                 
  abused.     Representative  Brown  inquired  if  the  parent                 
  referenced in that section could be the legal custodian.                     
                                                                               
  DIANE  WORLEY,  DIRECTOR,  DIVISION  OF  FAMILY   AND  YOUTH                 
  SERVICES, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND SOCIAL SERVICES, replied,                 
  the  referenced  section  deals  with  the parent  or  legal                 
  guardian.  Previous language would  give the parent or legal                 
  guardian the decision power to decide  where the child would                 
  be returned to.  The change made indicates that if there was                 
  a suspicion of abuse or neglect,  a report to the Department                 
  would be made and the Department  would then decide (not the                 
  parent), the location of placement of the child.                             
                                                                               
  Ms. Gordon  continued, the  most substantial  change in  the                 
  work  draft would  be to Page  5, Line  24, giving  back the                 
  determination  whether or  not to  file a  petition, if  the                 
  child was in  need of aid.   The language of the  bill would                 
  require the Department to provide a  finding if they did not                 
  file  a  petition.    That  information  would  then  become                 
  available to the parents.                                                    
                                                                               
  Representative  Kelly  asked  if  the  Department  would  be                 
  required  to file  a  petition  within  24 hours  of  taking                 
  custody of a child.  Ms. Worley responded, at this point the                 
  Department is not required  to file a petition on  any case.                 
  The Department is  required to file a  "determination" based                 
                                                                               
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  on the findings.   She emphasized that discretion is needed.                 
                                                                               
                                                                               
  ANNE CARPENETI,  ASSISTANT ATTORNEY  GENERAL, DEPARTMENT  OF                 
  LAW, spoke  to Page 5,  Line 31, recommending  that language                 
  "including the factual  findings on which  the determination                 
  was  based"  be deleted.   She  stated  that there  would be                 
  determinations  based  on  information  other  than  factual                 
  findings.  To  require factual findings for  a determination                 
  does not reflect what happened.   Ms. Gordon stated that the                 
  sponsor would not  object to that deletion.   Representative                 
  Therriault asked a circumstance in which a decision would be                 
  made on evidence not supported by factual findings.                          
                                                                               
  Ms. Worley suggested  that concern  would be addressed  more                 
  through the verbiage of an agreement  or determination.  She                 
  suggested  that  there  could  be  a  negotiated  compromise                 
  between a  child  and  a  parent  giving  the  Division  the                 
  discretion to not file a petition.                                           
                                                                               
  Following discussion  with Committee members,  Ms. Carpeneti                 
  suggested   replacing   the    language   with    "reasons".                 
  Representative Parnell MOVED deletion of "factual  findings"                 
  and inserting "reasons".   There being NO  OBJECTION, it was                 
  adopted.                                                                     
                                                                               
  Ms. Carpeneti discussed changes to Page 6, beginning on Line                 
  6, which would mirror the provision previously passed on the                 
  House  floor  to "delinquent  minors".   The  language would                 
  require that  parents  attend the  delinquency  hearings  of                 
  their children.  It would also allow the Court to order that                 
  parents participate and pay for treatment.                                   
                                                                               
  Representative Parnell asked what would happen if the parent                 
  did not attend.   Ms. Carpeneti noted that was  addressed in                 
  Subsection (J); the proceeding would continue.  If they were                 
  not present, they  could be charged  with contempt and  then                 
  fined.                                                                       
                                                                               
  Ms. Gordon noted  that Section  7 would deal  with the  time                 
  when the minor was brought before the court.  Representative                 
  Parnell  asked what  would  happen if  the  parents did  not                 
  follow the  established conditions.  Ms. Carpeneti explained                 
  the same standard would be enforced.                                         
                                                                               
  Ms. Gordon continued,  Section 8 would deal with the program                 
  for  run-away  minors;  the same  language  as  contained in                 
  version (D).   Subsection (6)  requires State facilities  to                 
  maintain  semi-secure  areas.    She urged  the  Committee's                 
  support in passage of the legislation.                                       
                                                                               
  Representative  Parnell  questioned that  if  subjecting the                 
                                                                               
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  juvenile's  parents to  contempt of  court  violations would                 
  cause an increase to the  Department of Public Safety fiscal                 
  note.                                                                        
                                                                               
  DEL SMITH, DEPUTY COMMISSIONER, DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC SAFETY,                 
  replied, the Department does not  anticipate more than a few                 
  additional warrants or summons to be served, which would not                 
  increase the fiscal note.                                                    
                                                                               
  Representative Kelly MOVED to report HCS CS SB 289 (FIN) out                 
  of  Committee   with  individual  recommendations   and  the                 
  accompanying fiscal notes.  There being NO OBJECTION, it was                 
  so ordered.                                                                  
                                                                               
  HCS CS SB 289 (FIN) was reported out of Committee with a "do                 
  pass" recommendation and with fiscal notes by the Department                 
  of  Administration,  (3)  by the  Department  of  Health and                 
  Social Services, the Department of Law, and the Alaska Court                 
  System.                                                                      
  SENATE BILL 98                                                               
                                                                               
       "An Act making changes  related to the aid to  families                 
       with dependent children  program, the Medicaid program,                 
       the general  relief assistance program,  and the  adult                 
       public assistance program; directing the Department  of                 
       Health  and  Social Services  to  apply to  the federal                 
       government for waivers  to implement the changes  where                 
       necessary; relating  to eligibility for  permanent fund                 
       dividends  of  certain  individuals who  receive  state                 
       assistance, to  notice requirements  applicable to  the                 
       dividend program; and providing for an effective date."                 
                                                                               
  LAUREE  HUGONIN,  EXECUTIVE  DIRECTOR,   ALASKA  NETWORK  ON                 
  DOMESTIC  VIOLENCE  AND SEXUAL  ASSAULT, JUNEAU,  stated, in                 
  reviewing  the   proposed  legislation,  she   requested  to                 
  comment.  The  first concern was  the benefit reductions  in                 
  the months of July,  August and September.  She  pointed out                 
  that in those  months, people needed to take off  work to do                 
  their subsistence  activities, recommending that the  cap be                 
  removed.                                                                     
                                                                               
  The largest concern  for the  Network was  with the  benefit                 
  time limits.   Of particular  concern is the  10% "hardship"                 
  criteria.   Ms.  Hugonin  continued,  an additional  concern                 
  would  be  the  provision  which  requires  participants  to                 
  perform unsubsidized work in order to receive benefits.                      
                                                                               
  Representative Brown requested further information regarding                 
  the facts submitted  by Ms. Hugonin and the 10%  limit.  Ms.                 
  Hugonin  responded that victims  of domestic  violence often                 
  have  to  leave  whatever economic  resources  they  have to                 
                                                                               
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  escape  the  violence.   Often  they have  to go  on  Aid to                 
  Families  with Dependent Children  (AFDC) to receive initial                 
  assistance while  trying to disentangle themselves  from the                 
  violence.  They could need more than 24 months within a five                 
  year period.                                                                 
                                                                               
  CATHERINE  MASSA,  (TESTIFIED VIA  TELECONFERENCE), STUDENT,                 
  UNIVERSITY  OF ALASKA, ANCHORAGE, spoke in  support of SB 98                 
  used in addition  to the Governor's FY97  proposed operating                 
  budget.                                                                      
                                                                               
  LOUISE  CHARLES,  JOBS  PROGRAM COORDINATOR,  TANANA  CHIEFS                 
  CONFERENCE, INC., FAIRBANKS,  provided the Committee  with a                 
  letter written by Ed Singler, Deputy Regional Administrator,                 
  Tanana Chiefs Conference, Fairbanks.  [Copy on file].                        
                                                                               
  She emphasized how effectively the  JOBS program was working                 
  for those people trying to get off AFDC.  She suggested that                 
  if wages were  reduced during summer months,  the reductions                 
  should  be  reinvested  for  those  families  to  help  them                 
  throughout the remainder of the year to "get off" AFDC.                      
                                                                               
  SB 98 was HELD in Committee for further consideration.                       
  ADJOURNMENT                                                                  
                                                                               
  The meeting adjourned at 2:40 P.M.                                           
                                                                               
                                                                               
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