Legislature(1999 - 2000)

03/29/2000 09:30 AM FIN

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
HOUSE FINANCE COMMITTEE                                                                                                         
March 29, 2000                                                                                                                  
9:30 A.M.                                                                                                                       
TAPE HFC 00 - 87, Side 1.                                                                                                       
TAPE HFC 00 - 87, Side 2.                                                                                                       
CALL TO ORDER                                                                                                                   
Co-Chair Therriault called the House Finance Committee                                                                          
meeting to order at 9:30 A.M.                                                                                                   
Co-Chair Therriault   Representative Foster                                                                                     
Co-Chair Mulder    Representative Grussendorf                                                                                   
Vice Chair Bunde    Representative Moses                                                                                        
Representative Austerman   Representative Phillips                                                                              
Representative J. Davies  Representative Williams                                                                               
Representative G. Davis                                                                                                         
ALSO PRESENT                                                                                                                    
Senator Tim Kelly; Lauree Hogonin, Director, Alaska Network                                                                     
on Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault (ANDVSA), Juneau;                                                                       
Anne Carpeneti, Assistant Attorney General, Criminal                                                                            
Division, Department of Law: Kris Knauss, Staff, Senator                                                                        
HB 366 An Act relating to the rights of crime victims,                                                                          
the crime of violating a protective order or                                                                                    
injunction, mitigating factors in sentencing for                                                                                
an offense, and the return of certain seized                                                                                    
property to victims; expanding the scope of the                                                                                 
prohibition of compromise based on civil remedy of                                                                              
misdemeanor crimes involving domestic violence;                                                                                 
amending Rules 10, 11, 13, 16, and 17, Alaska                                                                                   
District Court Rules of Civil Procedure and Rule                                                                                
9, Alaska Rules of Administration.                                                                                              
 HB 366 was HEARD and HELD in Committee for further                                                                             
SB 269 An Act relating to the deadline for the submission                                                                       
of monetary terms of collective bargaining                                                                                      
contracts between the state and a labor or                                                                                      
employee organization representing state employees                                                                              
to the legislature.                                                                                                             
CS 269 was HEARD and HELD in Committee for further                                                                              
CS FOR SENATE BILL NO. 269(RLS) am                                                                                              
An Act relating to legislative powers and                                                                                       
responsibility with respect to collective bargaining                                                                            
agreements between the state and a labor or employee                                                                            
organization representing state employees; and                                                                                  
providing for an effective date.                                                                                                
SENATOR KELLY noted that he did not support Amendment #1, 1-                                                                    
LS1386\KA.3, Cramer, 3/27/00. [Copy on File].  He commented                                                                     
that there could be some language developed which could take                                                                    
care of the University of Alaska.  The intent of the                                                                            
legislation is to make certain that, following the court                                                                        
decision, that the Legislature must fund new contracts.  The                                                                    
language has created ambiguity whether it should include the                                                                    
non-monetary terms.  He pointed out that verbiage contained                                                                     
in one of the new contracts, clarifies that provisions of                                                                       
the agreement not require Legislature funding before they                                                                       
are put into effect and implemented on the effective date of                                                                    
the agreement.   If the Legislature should decide that this                                                                     
year the contracts would not be funded, according to the                                                                        
agreement, the non-monetary terms would go into effect.  If                                                                     
there should be a second round of negotiations, the                                                                             
contracts would already have the non-monetary terms in the                                                                      
He reiterated that the idea is to clarify that non-monetary                                                                     
terms do not go into effect until the monetary terms are                                                                        
approved by the Legislature.  The next step clarifies that                                                                      
it would be an administrative nightmare to change non-                                                                          
monetary terms during the three-year time span of the                                                                           
contract.  Once the monetary terms are funded, the non-                                                                         
monetary terms would go into effect.  If the monetary terms                                                                     
of the contract are not funded, the non-monetary terms stay                                                                     
in effect until the end of that contract. The Legislature                                                                       
would need to reappropriate each year of a multi-year                                                                           
contract.  Next year, the Legislature will come back and                                                                        
reappropriate funding for the increase in health benefits                                                                       
and the 2% salary increase.                                                                                                     
Representative J. Davies countered that the "clarification"                                                                     
actually makes the legislation "muddier".  He pointed out                                                                       
that the amendment addresses that concern.                                                                                      
Representative J. Davies noted that there are many non-                                                                         
monetary provisions that are not controversial.  He                                                                             
suggested that in the interest of the Unions and in the                                                                         
interest of the State, those things should move forward.  He                                                                    
noted concern that the non-controversial things are                                                                             
disallowed.  He noted that would not be in the best interest                                                                    
of either the State or the Legislature.  Additionally, he                                                                       
asked, if the monetary terms were not signed and the non-                                                                       
monetary terms then would not be effect, at that time would,                                                                    
the Unions be at an impasse and strike. Representative J.                                                                       
Davies believed that situation will "trigger" a lot of                                                                          
strikes, which could otherwise have been avoided.                                                                               
Representative J. Davies added that the multi-year contracts                                                                    
would remove the "right to strike" in the second and third                                                                      
year.  Senator Kelly suggested that normally these types of                                                                     
things are "trade offs".  He thought that they would remain                                                                     
under the provisions of the old contract until there was                                                                        
agreement with the new contract.  In response to comments by                                                                    
Representative J. Davies, Senator Kelly explained that if                                                                       
the Legislature does not fund each of the twelve contracts,                                                                     
a number of possibilities could happen.  It is hoped that if                                                                    
the Legislature does not fund the contracts, they would be                                                                      
Senator Kelly advised that he did not know what would happen                                                                    
with the contracts this year, but anticipated that they                                                                         
would be renegotiated.  He did not know if that would                                                                           
"waive" the right to strike.  He thought that there was                                                                         
language in the bill, which indicates that if the second and                                                                    
third years of the contracts are not funded, they do not                                                                        
give up the right to strike.  Senator Kelly understood that                                                                     
work was being done on a committee substitute which would                                                                       
redefine the monetary terms to include benefits.                                                                                
Representative J. Davies stated that the terms of the                                                                           
contracts were negotiated under the status quo.  There would                                                                    
be different terms if the proposed language were taken into                                                                     
effect.  He stated that the largest difference is that there                                                                    
would not be a multi-year contract happening again.  He                                                                         
acknowledged that some terms are more complicated than                                                                          
others, which will create problems with the Legislature only                                                                    
meeting once a year.  He believed that it would force many                                                                      
of the contracts to go unaddressed for an additional year or                                                                    
could force the Legislature into a Special Session.  Senator                                                                    
Kelly replied that if the proposed legislation went into                                                                        
effect, the Legislature would not have to refund a multi-                                                                       
year contract every year.  The bill does not identify that.                                                                     
Representative J. Davies clarified that the Legislature has                                                                     
the option to not fund every year. He acknowledged that was                                                                     
language was clear and that it would remain clear given the                                                                     
status quo.  He pointed out that in multi-year contracts,                                                                       
the Unions would have to agree to take the non-monetary                                                                         
terms for the three years whether or not the monetary terms                                                                     
are funded.  If the Unions were forced to accept that, the                                                                      
Legislature would effectively be taking away their right to                                                                     
strike on those issues.  Senator Kelly disagreed that they                                                                      
would be giving up their right to strike.                                                                                       
Co-Chair Mulder did not see the point of why the Unions                                                                         
would go only to the single year contracts.  He argued that                                                                     
non-monetary terms are questionable. Going from a sick leave                                                                    
to a cash benefit, is a monetary term.  He thought that the                                                                     
amended language would "throw the bone" to the Unions.                                                                          
Representative J. Davies countered that the Unions had                                                                          
testified that they would not go for a multi-year contract.                                                                     
Senator Kelly stated that the contracts are currently all on                                                                    
the same cycle.  He believed that was good.  He pointed out                                                                     
that they are three-year contracts which will all come up                                                                       
for renegotiation at the same time.  Now all twelve public                                                                      
employee contracts are on the same cycle.  Each contract                                                                        
contains different divisions and each division was written                                                                      
by Unions not the Administration.                                                                                               
Co-Chair Mulder asked if it would be good public policy to                                                                      
allow the non-monetary terms to take effect in a contract,                                                                      
if the monetary terms had been rejected.  Representative J.                                                                     
Davies suggested whatever moves forward should be determined                                                                    
by the negotiated process with the exception, that the                                                                          
Legislature has the right to define what is monetary and                                                                        
what is non-monetary.                                                                                                           
Co-Chair Therriault pointed out that a definition of                                                                            
monetary terms had been presented.  He noted that Senator                                                                       
Kelly was willing to consider new language.  Senator Kelly                                                                      
commented that change would be in lieu of only Section 1,                                                                       
which would then solve the University's problems.                                                                               
Senator Kelly pointed out that the discrepancy, which exists                                                                    
between the employee numbers, submitted by the Unions and                                                                       
those of the Administration.  He advised that in the non-                                                                       
monetary contracts, the cash buy out provision was most                                                                         
perplexing.  He noted that there are twenty-six employees                                                                       
that have more than 2,000 hours of sick leave.  He                                                                              
reiterated that the cash-out provision would be costly.                                                                         
Representative Williams questioned the circumstances                                                                            
associated with the non-Union employee and how the contracts                                                                    
would affect them.  Co-Chair Mulder replied that would be a                                                                     
non-monetary term.  Representative Williams reiterated the                                                                      
circumstance of the employer paying sick leave rather than                                                                      
training an additional employee.                                                                                                
Senator Kelly agreed that is a value, but that the cost                                                                         
surpasses that value.  The reserve would be used for all                                                                        
State employees.                                                                                                                
Representative J. Davies MOVED to adopt Amendment 1. [Copy                                                                      
on File].  Co-Chair Mulder OBJECTED.                                                                                            
Representative Phillips recommended that the wording be                                                                         
worked out in Committee before submitting it to the House                                                                       
Floor.  Co-Chair Therriault pointed out that it is scheduled                                                                    
for the House Floor today.  Representative J. Davies                                                                            
observed that if the amendment has the support the                                                                              
leadership and the House Finance Committee, it would be                                                                         
accepted on the House Floor.                                                                                                    
Representative Grussendorf stated that without the                                                                              
amendment, there would not be multi-year contracts.  The                                                                        
idea of 12 contracts coming up for renegotiations every                                                                         
three years would be too much.  He preferred that the                                                                           
contracts be staggered so that there could be several Unions                                                                    
settled.  He reiterated that if all 12 contracts are up for                                                                     
renegotiation and several are not happy, it would present a                                                                     
difficult situation.  Currently, they stagger in, leaving a                                                                     
core that has approved contracts.  If they were addressed                                                                       
all at the same time, it could be a nightmare to public                                                                         
Representative Williams spoke to the cost of negotiations                                                                       
for 12 multi-ear contracts.                                                                                                     
A roll call vote was taken on the motion to adopt Amendment                                                                     
IN FAVOR: J. Davies, Grussendorf, Moses, Williams,                                                                              
OPPOSED: G. Davis, Foster, Phillips, Bunde,                                                                                     
Therriault. Mulder                                                                                                              
The MOTION FAILED (5-6).                                                                                                        
Co-Chair Mulder MOVED to report CS SB 269 (RLS)am out of                                                                        
Committee with individual recommendations and with the                                                                          
accompanying fiscal note.  Representative Grussendorf                                                                           
OBJECTED, stating that the additional work should be                                                                            
addressed in the House Finance Committee and not on the                                                                         
House Floor.                                                                                                                    
Representative Williams also OBJECTED to undertaking the                                                                        
work on the House Floor.  Representative Austerman echoed                                                                       
comments of the Representative Williams.  He expected to see                                                                    
the amendment be clarified.                                                                                                     
Co-Chair Mulder WITHDREW his MOTION to MOVE the bill from                                                                       
CSSB 269(RLS) was HELD in Committee for further                                                                                 
HOUSE BILL NO. 366                                                                                                              
An Act relating to the rights of crime victims, the                                                                             
crime of violating a protective order or injunction,                                                                            
mitigating factors in sentencing for an offense, and                                                                            
the return of certain seized property to victims;                                                                               
expanding the scope of the prohibition of compromise                                                                            
based on civil remedy of misdemeanor crimes involving                                                                           
domestic violence; amending Rules 10, 11, 13, 16, and                                                                           
17, Alaska District Court Rules of Civil Procedure and                                                                          
Rule 9, Alaska Rules of Administration.                                                                                         
ANNE CARPENETI, ASSISTANT ATTORNEY GENERAL, CRIMINAL                                                                            
DIVISION, DEPARTMENT OF LAW, stated that HB 366 deals with                                                                      
victims' rights.  It does not adopt any major changes in the                                                                    
law, but does adopt changes that are important to victims'                                                                      
suffering the circumstances which the bill addresses.  The                                                                      
bill does four things:                                                                                                          
? Allows a mitigated presumptive sentence for speedy no                                                                         
contest or guilty pleas;                                                                                                        
? Simplifies procedures for victims to recover stolen                                                                           
? Establishes a crime for violating protective                                                                                  
injunctions in child in need of aid cases;                                                                                      
? Extends current disallowance of civil compromise in                                                                           
some domestic violence cases to all domestic violence                                                                           
Ms. Carpeneti noted that a court can not issue an injunction                                                                    
for a child in need of aid case unless it makes a finding                                                                       
that the individual has abused the child physically or                                                                          
Representative G. Davis stated that portion concerned him                                                                       
given the "subjective present danger".  Ms. Carpeneti                                                                           
explained that would not be affected in this bill.  Co-Chair                                                                    
Therriault clarified that on Page 2, new language was being                                                                     
added which was a reference to the domestic violence                                                                            
section. Ms. Carpeneti added that was a provision contained                                                                     
in Title 11,which makes it a crime to violate a domestic                                                                        
violence protective order.                                                                                                      
Co-Chair Mulder commented that Section 3 was a different                                                                        
focus from the rest of the bill.  Ms. Carpeneti replied that                                                                    
Section 3 deals with victims of property crimes. It provides                                                                    
a simplified procedure for getting the property back. That                                                                      
section addresses only those cases where the property is in                                                                     
the possession of the law enforcement. The language provides                                                                    
for a simplified procedure.  It would allow the pawnbroker                                                                      
to have their say and due process and the right to present                                                                      
his or her case.                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Mulder asked how the court would make a decision                                                                       
involving the pawnbroker.  Ms. Carpeneti replied that the                                                                       
owner of the property has a higher interest than the                                                                            
pawnbroker.  Co-Chair Therriault interjected that "victims'                                                                     
rights" brings the bill together.                                                                                               
Ms. Carpeneti added that the bill would adopt as a statutory                                                                    
mitigator, if the defendant acted after being charged with a                                                                    
crime, to alleviate the effect of the crime on the victim,                                                                      
by pleading guilty within 30 days of the charges.  The                                                                          
mitigator would have already been recognized by the Court of                                                                    
Appeals as a non-statutory mitigator.  There is a provision                                                                     
in law which allows for civil compromise of certain                                                                             
misdemeanor charges.  Right now, the law allows civil                                                                           
compromise but it does not allow it in about 98% of the                                                                         
domestic violence cases.  The new language would make that                                                                      
Representative G. Davis referenced the "mitigating"                                                                             
stipulation.  He asked if the judge would have the option of                                                                    
reducing the mandatory sentence.  Ms. Carpeneti responded                                                                       
that mitigatory sentencing applies to presumptive                                                                               
sentencing.  That would apply to first time classified                                                                          
felonies, first time unclassified felonies and second time                                                                      
Co-Chair Therriault referenced the Department of Law's,                                                                         
Public Defender fiscal note.  He believed that there would                                                                      
be less work for the mitigator.  Ms. Carpeneti commented                                                                        
that she did not understand the new roll of the mitigator                                                                       
position, which is being requested.  She stated that law                                                                        
currently allows for a civil compromise and admitted that                                                                       
this request would be minor change to current law.  Ms.                                                                         
Carpeneti added that a court would have to approve a civil                                                                      
compromise, regardless.                                                                                                         
Representative J. Davies MOVED to adopt Amendment #1, 1-                                                                        
GH2024\A.1, Luckhaupt, 3/28/00.  [Copy on File].  Co-Chair                                                                      
Mulder OBJECTED.                                                                                                                
Representative J. Davies explained that the Council on                                                                          
Domestic Violence had submitted the amendment.  The                                                                             
amendment speaks to a time when a person commits a crime,                                                                       
violating a protective order. The intent of the amendment                                                                       
would be to relax the requirement that the order needs to be                                                                    
filed.  Given that, if there was a valid protective order                                                                       
issued in another state, it would provide that same standard                                                                    
in Alaska. At this time, filing could be an issue.  The                                                                         
amendment would fit under the order of protecting victims of                                                                    
Co-Chair Mulder asked if this concern had been presented to                                                                     
the Department before this meeting.  Ms. Carpeneti clarified                                                                    
that it had not.  Co-Chair Therriault asked if there was a                                                                      
Department position on the amendment.  Ms. Carpeneti stated                                                                     
that philosophically, it would be a good idea, however, the                                                                     
civil provision of the domestic violence law provides that a                                                                    
protective order from another state has to be filed to be                                                                       
enforced civilly.  By allowing it to be criminal would                                                                          
present an anomaly in law which needs to be fixed.  She                                                                         
noted that the federal government does not require filing of                                                                    
protective orders for them to be enforced.                                                                                      
Representative G. Davis asked if Alaska was more stringent                                                                      
than other states.  Ms. Carpeneti replied that the way the                                                                      
amendment was written, it requires protective orders.  In                                                                       
order for it to be a violation of crime, it would have to                                                                       
come under the statutes.                                                                                                        
(TAPE CHANGE, HFC 00 - 87, Side 2).                                                                                             
Co-Chair Mulder stated that ultimately, the victim would                                                                        
have to have contact with the enforcement agency at some                                                                        
point.  Otherwise, they would have false protection. Ms.                                                                        
Carpeneti commented that a problem could result if someone                                                                      
came to our State and did not know that they had to file a                                                                      
protective order or did not have time to file it before they                                                                    
were victimized.                                                                                                                
Representative Phillips asked why the amendment was not                                                                         
considered when the bill was drafted or discussed in the                                                                        
House Judiciary Committee.                                                                                                      
LAUREE HOGONIN, DIRECTOR, ALASKA NETWORK ON DOMESTIC                                                                            
VIOLENCE AND SEXUAL ASSAULT (ANDVSA), JUNEAU, explained that                                                                    
ANDVSA was not aware that out-of-state orders could not be                                                                      
prosecuted until ten days ago.  This concern came up at a                                                                       
national meeting, as an active piece of law right now,                                                                          
enforcing out-of-state protective orders across the nation.                                                                     
The discussion came up about prosecuting the out-of-state                                                                       
orders.  It had been left out of this area of protective                                                                        
orders issued from other states.  This could happen because                                                                     
the victim was not familiar with the Alaska Statute or                                                                          
because in several other states, filing is not a                                                                                
requirement.  When this came to the attention of the ANDVSA                                                                     
staff, Ms. Hogonin noted that she spoke with Ms. Carpeneti                                                                      
and Representative J. Davies to help fix the problem.                                                                           
Representative Phillips asked if the Alaska orders include a                                                                    
phrase noting that if you transfer out of the state, you                                                                        
must make contact with the public safety officers of the                                                                        
state that you are going to.  Ms. Hogonin replied that does                                                                     
not happen because there are two functions at looking at                                                                        
protective orders with full faith and credit. The issuing                                                                       
state is responsible for determining who is protected, the                                                                      
terms and conditions of the order and how long that order is                                                                    
in effect.  The enforcing state is responsible for how that                                                                     
order is enforced, the arresting authority of responding to                                                                     
it, and the notification and penalty of procedures.  It                                                                         
would not be necessary or practical for the Alaska order to                                                                     
indicate that you have to contact law enforcement or the                                                                        
court in the state you are moving to as that may not be the                                                                     
law for that state which may not require filing.                                                                                
Ms. Carpeneti stated that, AS 18.66.140 would require a                                                                         
change in order to comply with the need.  She acknowledged                                                                      
that the amendment could fit under the content of the                                                                           
proposed bill.                                                                                                                  
Ms. Hogonin stated that there is work being done by two                                                                         
different national groups in the process of developing a                                                                        
model code for enforcement of protective orders, one through                                                                    
the United States Attorney General and the other through the                                                                    
Department of Justice.  She noted that this would be an                                                                         
opportunity for Alaska to include a tool to take care of                                                                        
situations so to have a valid protective order from another                                                                     
state for those victims who either don't know that they are                                                                     
suppose to file or have not had the opportunity to file.  If                                                                    
they had a confrontation, inclusion of this language would                                                                      
allow for a prosecution if they were violated.                                                                                  
Co-Chair Mulder questioned if there should be a fiscal note                                                                     
submitted by Department of Public Safety.                                                                                       
HB 366 was HELD in Committee for further discussion.                                                                            
The meeting adjourned at 10:30 A.M.                                                                                             
H.F.C. 9 3/29/00am                                                                                                              

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