Legislature(1997 - 1998)

05/02/1997 04:40 PM FIN

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
txt
                                                                               
                                                                               
                     HOUSE FINANCE COMMITTEE                                   
                           MAY 2, 1997                                         
                            4:40 P.M.                                          
                                                                               
  TAPE HFC 97 - 120, Side 1, #000 - end.                                       
  TAPE HFC 97 - 120, Side 2, #000 - #489.                                      
                                                                               
  CALL TO ORDER                                                                
                                                                               
  Co-Chair Gene Therriault called  the House Finance Committee                 
  meeting to order at 4:40 P.M.                                                
                                                                               
  PRESENT                                                                      
                                                                               
  Co-Chair Therriault           Representative Kohring                         
  Representative Davies         Representative Martin                          
  Representative Davis          Representative Moses                           
  Representative Foster         Representative Mulder                          
  Representative Kelly                                                         
                                                                               
  Representatives Grussendorf and Hanley were  not present for                 
  the meeting.                                                                 
                                                                               
  ALSO PRESENT                                                                 
                                                                               
  Patti  Swenson,   Staff,  Representative  Con   Bunde;  Mike                 
  Tibbles,  Staff,  Representative   Gene  Therriault;   Diane                 
  Worley,  Director,  Division of  Family  and  Youth Service,                 
  Department  of   Health  and   Social  Services;   Stephanie                 
  Szymanski,  Staff, Senator Drue  Pearce; Joe Ambrose, Staff,                 
  Senator  Robin  Taylor;  Jeff   Bush,  Deputy  Commissioner,                 
  Department of  Commerce and Economic  Development; Guy Bell,                 
  Director, Division of Administrative Services, Department of                 
  Commerce   and   Economic   Development;   Jens   Saakvitre,                 
  (Testified  via   teleconference),  Director,   LIFE-Alaska,                 
  Anchorage;  Paula  Haley,  (Testified  via  teleconference),                 
  Anchorage.                                                                   
                                                                               
  SUMMARY                                                                      
                                                                               
  SB 38     An Act relating to anatomical gifts, living wills,                 
            and do not resuscitate orders.                                     
                                                                               
            HCS  CS SB 38 (JUD) was  reported out of Committee                 
            with a "do pass" recommendation  and with a fiscal                 
            note  by  the  Department  of  Health  and  Social                 
            Services dated 2/3/97  and a  zero fiscal note  by                 
            the Department of Public Safety dated 2/3/97.                      
                                                                               
  SB 55     An Act relating to the definition of certain state                 
            receipts; and providing for an effective date.                     
                                                                               
                                                                               
                                1                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
            SB 55 was RESCHEDULED for a latter hearing.                        
                                                                               
  SB 103    An Act relating to hearings before and authorizing                 
            fees for  the State Commission  for Human  Rights;                 
            and providing for an effective date.                               
                                                                               
            SB 103 was HELD for further discussion.                            
                                                                               
  SB 177    An Act  relating  to the  international trade  and                 
            business endowment; and providing for an effective                 
            date.                                                              
                                                                               
            SB  177  was reported  out  of Committee  with "no                 
            recommendation"  and  with  fiscal  notes  by  the                 
            Department   of   Revenue   dated   4/28/97,   the                 
            Department  of  Commerce and  Economic Development                 
            dated 4/22/97 and the Statewide Budget Office.                     
                                                                               
  HB 127    An Act relating  to the  citizen review board  and                 
            panels   for   permanency  planning   for  certain                 
            children in state  custody; renaming the Citizens'                 
            Review  Panel  For  Permanency   Planning  as  the                 
            Citizens' Foster Care Review Board; extending  the                 
            termination  date  of  the Citizens'  Foster  Care                 
            Review Board; and providing for an effective date.                 
                                                                               
            CS HB 127 (FIN) was reported out of Committee with                 
            a "do pass"  recommendation and with fiscal  notes                 
            by the  House Finance Committee, the Department of                 
            Administration  dated 4/23/97 and  a zero  note by                 
            the Department of Health and Social Services dated                 
            4/23/97.                                                           
  SENATE BILL 103                                                              
                                                                               
       "An  Act relating  to hearings  before  and authorizing                 
       fees for  the State  Commission for  Human Rights;  and                 
       providing for an effective date."                                       
                                                                               
  PAULA  HALEY,  (TESTIFIED  VIA  TELECONFERENCE),  ANCHORAGE,                 
  spoke in support of the legislation and explained that in an                 
  effort to reduce budgets, some  actions that save money also                 
  create efficiencies which better  meet public service  goals                 
  as is the case with the Human Rights Commission.                             
                                                                               
  The bill  would allow  the Human  Rights Commission to  hold                 
  hearings at  the office in  Anchorage rather than  where the                 
  alleged  discrimination  occurred,   as  is  required  under                 
  current law.   She  suggested that  it would  save time  and                 
  money in travel costs.   The Commissioner would continue  to                 
  ensure that complainants may participate in the hearings.                    
                                                                               
                                                                               
                                2                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  Ms.  Haley  continued,   the  bill  would  also   allow  the                 
  Commission to  charge fees to  cover the costs  of services,                 
  information and materials  and to provide tapes  rather than                 
  transcriptions of the  hearings.   The changes would  reduce                 
  the cost and time  involved in resolving cases, helping  the                 
  Commission to work through its  tremendous backlog of cases,                 
  and better respond  to the  public's increased requests  for                 
  its  services.   The  result would  be  better human  rights                 
  protection for Alaskans.                                                     
                                                                               
  Representative Foster MOVED to report  CS SB 103 (STA)am out                 
  of Committee  with individual  recommendations and  with the                 
  accompanying fiscal notes.  There being NO OBJECTION, it was                 
  so ordered.                                                                  
                                                                               
  CS  SB 103 (STA)am was reported out  of Committee with a "do                 
  pass" recommendation and with two fiscal notes by the Office                 
  of the Governor dated 4/29/97 and 3/24/97.                                   
  HOUSE BILL 127                                                               
                                                                               
       "An Act relating to the citizen review board and panels                 
       for  permanency planning for  certain children in state                 
       custody;  renaming  the   Citizens'  Review  Panel  For                 
       Permanency Planning as the Citizens' Foster Care Review                 
       Board; extending the termination  date of the Citizens'                 
       Foster  Care  Review   Board;  and  providing   for  an                 
       effective date."                                                        
                                                                               
  PATTI SWENSON, STAFF, REPRESENTATIVE CON BUNDE, spoke to the                 
  changes  between  CS HB  127  (HES) and  the  proposed House                 
  Finance version of the legislation, 0-LS0496\L,  Lauterbach,                 
  5/2/97.                                                                      
                                                                               
  Referencing Page 4, Line  25, she asked if the  new language                 
  referring  to when  the board  meets  "telephonically" would                 
  also include video.  Representative G. Davis understood that                 
  it  would.   Representative J.  Davies suggested  clarifying                 
  that language on Page  4, Line 26, inserting: "And  may meet                 
  by video conference".                                                        
                                                                               
  MIKE   TIBBLES,   STAFF,  REPRESENTATIVE   GENE  THERRIAULT,                 
  recommended that the enclosed  amendment, [Amendment #1-Copy                 
  on file], which was included in the members packets would be                 
  the appropriate place to incorporate that language.                          
                                                                               
  Representative  Foster  MOVED  that 0-LS0496\L,  Lauterbach,                 
  5/2/97, be the version before the Committee.  There being NO                 
  OBJECTION, it was adopted.                                                   
                                                                               
  Representative   Foster  MOVED   to   adopt  Amendment   #1.                 
  Representative  G.   Davis  OBJECTED  for  the   purpose  of                 
                                                                               
                                3                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  discussion, while suggesting to  change the wording.                         
                                                                               
  Representative  J. Davies MOVED  to add the  language:  "And                 
  may meet by video conference", to Amendment #1.  There being                 
  NO  OBJECTION  to  the addition  of  the  new  language, the                 
  amended  Amendment  #1  was incorporated.    There  being NO                 
  further  OBJECTION  to  the  amended  Amendment #1,  it  was                 
  adopted.                                                                     
                                                                               
  Ms.  Swenson spoke to the  change from executive director to                 
  program  coordinator.    Representative  J.  Davies   voiced                 
  concern  with  that  change.    He  felt that  an  executive                 
  director implied a higher  level of expertise.  He  asked if                 
  those terms were defined in the Administrative Code.                         
                                                                               
  Mr.  Tibbles  explained that  the fiscal  note spoke  to the                 
  change  of  that  position.    The  social  service  program                 
  coordinator would be a range 20.  A program coordinator, the                 
  previous title, was  used before the funding was reduced and                 
  that  position was  phased  out.   Ms.  Swenson agreed,  she                 
  thought that  there  would be  a difference  between what  a                 
  program coordinator and an executive  director.  She advised                 
  that a program  coordinator is a classified  position within                 
  the State, whereas,  an executive director is  not and could                 
  serve at the  pleasure of the  board; a program  coordinator                 
  would be a State directed position.                                          
                                                                               
  DIANE WORLEY, DIRECTOR, DIVISION OF FAMILY AND YOUTH SERVICE                 
  (DFYS), DEPARTMENT  OF HEALTH AND SOCIAL SERVICES, clarified                 
  that  when  a  department  is  referenced  in  the  proposed                 
  legislation,  that   reference  is  to  the   Department  of                 
  Administration (DOA).   Currently, there  exists within  the                 
  State, a social  service project  coordinator job class  for                 
  upper level and  senior management  positions.  Some  boards                 
  are run  by a classified  executive director position.   She                 
  understood that also was a State job classification.                         
                                                                               
  Ms. Swenson noted  that when the panel  was first appointed,                 
  it  was  run  by  a program  coordinator  with  no problems.                 
  Representative  J. Davies  pointed out  that initially,  the                 
  program  was a  pilot  project in  a  portion of  Anchorage,                 
  whereas, the current proposal is  a statewide program with a                 
  much  broader  scope.   Ms.  Swenson  pointed  out that  the                 
  functions would basically continue to be the same.                           
                                                                               
  She  continued, the  change to  Page 6,  Lines  10-11, would                 
  address  the  State  board  making  recommendations  to  the                 
  Department regarding regulations  for out-of-home  placement                 
  of children.  She  understood that the State board  would be                 
  allowed  to  continue  that  procedure  which would  make  a                 
  difference for DFYS.  The new language would further clarify                 
  the legislation.                                                             
                                                                               
                                4                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  Mr. Tibbles spoke  to the deletion of  transitional language                 
  at the  end of  the bill.   Ms. Swenson  commented that  the                 
  Department has indicated support for that change.                            
                                                                               
  Representative G.  Davis referenced  Page 6,  Line 26,  with                 
  regard  to  the  report  being  sent  to  the  Governor  and                 
  Legislature.    He  suggested that  these  bodies  should be                 
  "notified" of the  availability of the report.   Ms. Swenson                 
  noted that Representative Bunde would support that change in                 
  wording  as  it  would  save  printing  and  mailing  costs.                 
  Representative G. Davis MOVED to change the language on Page                 
  6,  Line  26  to:    "Shall  notify  the  governor  and  the                 
  legislature that the report  is available".  There being  NO                 
  OBJECTION, it was adopted.                                                   
                                                                               
  Mr. Tibbles explained the revised fiscal note.  The personal                 
  service line was  changed to  $45 thousand dollars,  funding                 
  the  program  coordinator  for  a   nine  month  period,  in                 
  addition, it would bring the  social worker II position from                 
  10.5 month funding to  12 month funding.  The  social worker                 
  IV   position  would   be  eliminated   and   an  additional                 
  administrative clerk would be added.                                         
                                                                               
  Representative J.  Davies questioned  if additional  funding                 
  exists  as  the  quoted  numbers  amount  to  more than  $45                 
  thousand dollars allocated.  Ms. Swenson replied, currently,                 
  there is  staff functioning  in the  Anchorage panel  office                 
  with funding through FY98.                                                   
                                                                               
  Representative J. Davies asked if it was the Chair's  intent                 
  that the program coordinator position  work only nine months                 
  a year.   Ms.  Swenson stated  that the  program coordinator                 
  position  would   be   a   full   twelve   month   position.                 
  Representative  J. Davies asked why the  amount had not been                 
  increased  in the personal service line following FY98.  Mr.                 
  Tibbles  interjected  that  was an  oversight  and  that the                 
  personal service line  had been copied without  changing the                 
  numbers.  The difference would be an additional $17 thousand                 
  dollars  for a  full year funding  of an  executive director                 
  position, and  an additional  $6 thousand  dollars for  full                 
  year funding of the clerk position.  He recommended changing                 
  the FY99 through FY03 by increasing personal services for an                 
  additional $23 thousand dollars.                                             
                                                                               
  Representative J.  Davies MOVED that  the personal  services                 
  line  through  FY03  be  changed  to  reflect  $68  thousand                 
  dollars.  There being NO OBJECTION, it was adopted.                          
                                                                               
  Representative Foster MOVED to report CS HB 127 (FIN) out of                 
  Committee  with  individual  recommendations  and  with  the                 
  accompanying fiscal notes.  There being NO OBJECTION, it was                 
                                                                               
                                5                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  so ordered.                                                                  
                                                                               
  CS  HB 127 (FIN)  was reported out  of Committee with  a "do                 
  pass"  recommendation  and with  fiscal  notes by  the House                 
  Finance Committee,  the Department  of Administration  dated                 
  4/23/97 and  a zero  note by  the Department  of Health  and                 
  Social Services dated 4/23/97.                                               
  SENATE BILL 177                                                              
                                                                               
       "An  Act  relating  to  the  international  trade   and                 
       business  endowment;  and  providing for  an  effective                 
       date."                                                                  
                                                                               
  STEPHANIE SZYMANSKI,  STAFF, SENATOR DRUE  PEARCE, explained                 
  that the legislation would establish an  International Trade                 
  and Business Endowment in the  Alaska Science and Technology                 
  Foundation.   The principal and income of the endowment will                 
  be invested by the Permanent Fund Corporation and net income                 
  from  the  endowment will  be  held  in a  separate  account                 
  subject to appropriation by the Legislature.                                 
                                                                               
  The  intended purpose  of the  endowment income would  be to                 
  cover  a  portion  of  the  State's  annual  expenditure  on                 
  international trade  promotion.   In the  Senate version  of                 
  FY98  budget,  it  is  envisioned  that  the  Department  of                 
  Commerce and  Economic Development,  Division  of Trade  and                 
  Tourism's  international  trade staff  and  offices  and the                 
  World Trade Center would receive  support from the endowment                 
  income.                                                                      
                                                                               
  Ms. Szymanski concluded that keeping the Department's  trade                 
  specialists  and overseas  offices  fully  funded, the  bill                 
  would make sure  the State maintains the  longstanding links                 
  with key trading partners in Asia,  the Russian Far East and                 
  elsewhere.                                                                   
                                                                               
  Representative Martin suggested that in order to receive the                 
  maximum from our  money, it should  be placed in a  treasury                 
  rather than permanent fund.                                                  
                                                                               
  JEFF BUSH, DEPUTY  COMMISSIONER, DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE  AND                 
  ECONOMIC  DEVELOPMENT,  replied   that  there  was   nothing                 
  scientific  about  placing  the  money  in   Alaska  Science                 
  Technology Foundation (ASTF); it was decided that this would                 
  be  a safe investment with  a large foundation, and invested                 
  by the  permanent fund.   Placing  the money  was an  add-on                 
  investment in a simple way.  He acknowledged that there is a                 
  trade off with which the fund would be faced and the changes                 
  that  it will  bring.   The Department has  been comfortable                 
  with  the  permanent fund  investments  over the  years, and                 
  would be investing some money there.                                         
                                                                               
                                6                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  Mr.  Bush, in response  to Representative  Martin, explained                 
  that the money would be earned and then set-up in an account                 
  within ASTF.  It  would then be subject by  an appropriation                 
  to the Department for international trade efforts.  It would                 
  be a separately  maintained fund.   Mr. Bush noted that  the                 
  Department is in support of the bill.   He added that Alaska                 
  Center  for International  Business  (ACIB) recognizes  that                 
  there has  been  discussion regarding  the over-lapping  and                 
  lack of coordination in international trade activities.  The                 
  Administration  sees  the  bill  as   an  effort  to  better                 
  coordinate those activities.                                                 
                                                                               
  (Tape Change HFC 97-120, Side 2).                                            
                                                                               
  Mr. Bush suggested  that the  merger would  create a  better                 
  international trade  organization.  ACIB  has done a  lot of                 
  international  trade research,  whereas, the  Department has                 
  done  a lot of international  trade activities over the past                 
  years, in which they  have used ACIB for research.   To have                 
  the two groups  working together will better  coordinate the                 
  research, providing a more stable funding source.                            
                                                                               
  Representative  Martin  MOVED  to  report   SB  177  out  of                 
  Committee  with  individual  recommendations  and  with  the                 
  accompanying fiscal notes.  There being NO OBJECTION, it was                 
  so ordered.                                                                  
                                                                               
  SB   177   was   reported   out   of  Committee   with   "no                 
  recommendation"  and  with  fiscal  notes  by the  Statewide                 
  Budget Office, the  Department of Revenue dated  4/28/97 and                 
  the Department  of Commerce and  Economic Development  dated                 
  4/22/97.                                                                     
  SENATE BILL 38                                                               
                                                                               
                                                                               
       "An Act relating to anatomical gifts, living wills, and                 
       do not resuscitate orders."                                             
                                                                               
  JOE AMBROSE,  STAFF, SENATOR  ROBIN TAYLOR,  noted that  the                 
  legislation  would  modify  existing statutes  dealing  with                 
  living wills and  would add a  provision by which those  who                 
  execute a  living will can  choose through that  document to                 
  become  an  organ donor.   By  adding  the provision  to the                 
  statutory language suggested  for a living will,  loved ones                 
  and health care professionals would  be fully informed as to                 
  the wishes of family members and patients.                                   
                                                                               
  In addition to adding anatomical gifts  to the language of a                 
  living  will, SB  38 would  instruct the  Division of  Motor                 
  Vehicles (DMV) to indicate on drivers' licenses not only the                 
                                                                               
                                7                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  fact that the bearer  has elected to become an  organ donor,                 
  but  also  that  the individual  has  a  living  will.   The                 
  provision  generated a fiscal  note on the  bill, which will                 
  total $2 thousand dollars for the design of a logo.                          
                                                                               
  Mr. Ambrose noted that SB 38 has been thoroughly examined in                 
  the  committee  process  and  has  been amended  to  address                 
  concerns  raised  by  the Emergency  Medical  Services (EMS)                 
  Section of the  State Division  of Health as  well as  organ                 
  banks in Alaska and Washington state.                                        
                                                                               
  JENS  SAAKVITRE,  (TESTIFIED VIA  TELECONFERENCE), DIRECTOR,                 
  LIFE-ALASKA, ANCHORAGE,  spoke in  support  of the  proposed                 
  legislation.                                                                 
                                                                               
  Representative Martin MOVED  to report HCS  CS SB 177  (JUD)                 
  out of  Committee with  individual recommendations  and with                 
  the accompanying fiscal notes.  There being NO OBJECTION, it                 
  was so ordered.                                                              
                                                                               
  HCS CS SB 177 (JUD) was reported out of Committee with a "do                 
  pass" recommendation and with fiscal notes by the Department                 
  of  Health  and   Social  Services  dated  2/3/97   and  the                 
  Department of Public Safety dated 2/3/97.                                    
  ADJOURNMENT                                                                  
                                                                               
  The meeting adjourned at 5:30 P.M.                                           
                                                                               
                                                                               
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**FIN125PM                                                                     

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