Legislature(2005 - 2006)HOUSE FINANCE 519

02/27/2006 01:30 PM FINANCE


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* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
+ HB 343 HARASSMENT TELECONFERENCED
Moved CSHB 343(JUD) Out of Committee
+ HB 324 BAN ORANGE HAWKWEED/PURPLE LOOSESTRIFE TELECONFERENCED
Heard & Held
+ SB 209 UNDERAGE MILITARY ON LICENSED PREMISES TELECONFERENCED
Moved Out of Committee
Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled
                  HOUSE FINANCE COMMITTEE                                                                                       
                     February 27, 2006                                                                                          
                         1:48 p.m.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
CALL TO ORDER                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Meyer called the House  Finance Committee meeting to                                                                   
order at 1:48:50 PM.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Representative Mike Chenault, Co-Chair                                                                                          
Representative Kevin Meyer, Co-Chair                                                                                            
Representative Bill Stoltze, Vice-Chair                                                                                         
Representative Richard Foster                                                                                                   
Representative Mike Hawker                                                                                                      
Representative Jim Holm                                                                                                         
Representative Reggie Joule                                                                                                     
Representative Mike Kelly                                                                                                       
Representative Carl Moses                                                                                                       
Representative Bruce Weyhrauch                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Representative Beth Kerttula                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
ALSO PRESENT                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Senator Charlie Huggins; Josh  Temple, Staff, Senator Charlie                                                                   
Huggins;  Suzanne  Hancock, Staff,  Representative  Gabrielle                                                                   
LeDoux;   Representative   Bob   Lynn;  Mike   Sica,   Staff,                                                                   
Representative Bob Lynn                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
PRESENT VIA TELECONFERENCE                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Erin  Whipple,   Kodiak;  Christy  Renfrew,   Manager,  Upper                                                                   
Susitna  Soil   and  Water   Conservation  District;   Janice                                                                   
Chumley, Nikiski, Central Peninsula  Master Gardeners; Daniel                                                                   
Colang, President, Alaska Correctional  Officers Association;                                                                   
Mae Barney,  Correctional Officer, Fairbanks;  Hans Klausner,                                                                   
Homer Soil  and Water  Conservation District; Al  Poindexter,                                                                   
Alaska   Association  of   Conservation  Districts;   Sabrina                                                                   
Fernandez,  Assistant Attorney  General,  Department of  Law;                                                                   
Susan  Parks,  Deputy Attorney  General,  Criminal  Division,                                                                   
Department   of   Law;  Ed   Fogels,   Deputy   Commissioner,                                                                   
Department of  Natural Resources; Larry DeVilbiss,  Director,                                                                   
Division  of Agriculture,  Department  of Natural  Resources;                                                                   
Jamie Snyder, University of Alaska Fairbanks                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
SUMMARY                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
CSSB 209 (JUD) "An  Act relating to  access by persons  under                                                                   
               21 years of age to premises licensed to sell                                                                     
               alcoholic beverages as clubs when alcoholic                                                                      
               beverages are not  present and, when alcoholic                                                                   
               beverages  are   present,  to  premises  of  a                                                                   
               patriotic  organization licensed as  a club if                                                                   
               the  person  possesses  a  valid  active  duty                                                                   
               military  or armed forces identification  card                                                                   
               issued by the United States government."                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
               CSSB 209  (JUD) was REPORTED out  of Committee                                                                   
               with a "do pass"  recommendation and with zero                                                                   
               fiscal  note #1 by the Department  of Military                                                                   
               and  Veterans  Affairs, and  with  a new  zero                                                                   
               fiscal  note  by   the  Department  of  Public                                                                   
               Safety.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
HB 324         "An Act banning the importation, transfer,                                                                       
               and cultivation  of orange hawkweed and purple                                                                   
               loosestrife."                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
               HB 324 was heard and HELD in Committee for                                                                       
               further consideration.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
HB 343         "An Act relating to harassment."                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
               HB 343 was REPORTED out of Committee with a                                                                      
               "do pass" recommendation  and with zero fiscal                                                                   
               note  #1  by the  Department  of  Corrections,                                                                   
               zero  note  #2  by the  Department  of  Public                                                                   
               Safety, and with  new zero fiscal notes by the                                                                   
               Department  of Law,  the Alaska Court  System,                                                                   
               and the Department of Administration.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
1:48:58 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CS FOR SENATE BILL NO. 209 (JUD)                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
     "An Act relating to access  by persons under 21 years of                                                                   
     age to premises licensed  to sell alcoholic beverages as                                                                   
     clubs  when alcoholic  beverages  are  not present  and,                                                                   
     when alcoholic  beverages are present, to  premises of a                                                                   
     patriotic organization licensed  as a club if the person                                                                   
     possesses a  valid active duty military  or armed forces                                                                   
     identification   card  issued   by  the  United   States                                                                   
     government."                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR CHARLIE  HUGGINS, sponsor, refreshed  the committee's                                                                   
memory  of SB  209, which  is about  allowing young  military                                                                   
people into veterans' clubs.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
JOSH TEMPLE,  STAFF, SENATOR CHARLIE HUGGINS,  explained that                                                                   
the bill is the  same as HB 331, which was  previously passed                                                                   
out of the House Finance Committee.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
1:51:11 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Senator Huggins added that the bill has a no-cost factor.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Meyer reviewed the two zero fiscal notes.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Representative Kelly MOVED to report CSSB 209 out of                                                                            
Committee   with    individual   recommendations    and   the                                                                   
accompanying fiscal notes.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
There being NO OBJECTION, it was so ordered.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CSSB  209 (JUD)  was REPORTED  out  of Committee  with a  "do                                                                   
pass"  recommendation and  with zero  fiscal note  #1 by  the                                                                   
Department of Military  and Veterans Affairs, and  with a new                                                                   
zero fiscal note by the Department of Public Safety.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
1:53:49 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 324                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     "An   Act  banning   the   importation,  transfer,   and                                                                   
     cultivation of orange hawkweed  and purple loosestrife."                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
SUZANNE HANCOCK, STAFF, REPRESENTATIVE GABRIELLE LEDOUX,                                                                        
read the sponsor statement as follows:                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
     For  the   record,  I  am  Suzanne  Hancock,   staff  to                                                                   
     Representative  Gabrielle   LeDoux.  The  Representative                                                                   
     thanks the  Chair and Committee  for hearing  this bill.                                                                   
     Representative  LeDoux's  intention with  filing HB  324                                                                   
     was  to  respond  to  concerns  from  her  constituents.                                                                   
     Scientists as well as gardeners  are concerned about new                                                                   
     strains  of  noxious  weeds  that  are  taking  hold  in                                                                   
     Alaska.  These invasive plants  crowd out native  plants                                                                   
     and  cultivated  plants   and  are  devastating  to  the                                                                   
     environment and people's gardens.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
     Orange  hawkweed  and  purple  loosestrife  were  chosen                                                                   
     because  they  have  been  the ones  in  the  spotlight.                                                                   
     Purple   loosestrife  is  a   threat  to  wetlands   and                                                                   
     waterfowl.  In my community  of Kodiak groups  have been                                                                   
     pulling  up, bagging and  disposing of orange  hawkweed.                                                                   
     The State agency that has  oversight in this area is the                                                                   
     Department of  Natural Resources.  The  language in this                                                                   
     bill   has   the   Commissioner   adopting   regulations                                                                   
     providing  for  the  disposal  of  orange  hawkweed  and                                                                   
     purple  loosestrife  and  plant  parts  to  prevent  the                                                                   
     further propagation of the species in the state.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
     Statute currently  lists many noxious weeds  but has not                                                                   
     kept  up with  new species,  including  these two.  This                                                                   
     bill  only  applies  to those  who  knowingly  plant  or                                                                 
     cultivate  an  orange  hawkweed  or  purple  loosestrife                                                                   
     plant.  This offense is  a class  A misdemeanor  but the                                                                   
     intent is  not to have weed  police, but to  educate the                                                                   
     public  about  the  menace   these  and  other  invasive                                                                   
     species present to our environment,  agricultural crops,                                                                   
     streams,  and gardens. As  a legislator,  Representative                                                                   
     LeDoux sponsors  the bill because she considers  it good                                                                   
     public policy.  There will be members of  the scientific                                                                   
     community,  gardeners  and  others testifying  in  their                                                                   
     areas of expertise.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
1:56:47 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Meyer asked  why only two plants are  targeted when,                                                                   
in fact, there are twenty invasive  species on the list.  Ms.                                                                   
Hancock explained that there exists  a list of plants already                                                                   
on the  books.  She shared  the benefits of  proactive action                                                                   
in response to these new invading plants.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
1:58:13 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
ERIN WHIPPLE,  KODIAK, spoke  in favor of  HB 324  because of                                                                   
the  danger invasive  plants pose.   They  don't provide  any                                                                   
benefit to wildlife or bird species,  which is a factor under                                                                   
consideration.   Alaska is in  the position of being  able to                                                                   
prevent problems  caused by invasive plants.   She encouraged                                                                   
passage of the bill.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
2:00:36 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHRISTY  RENFREW,  MANAGER,  UPPER  SUSITNA  SOIL  AND  WATER                                                                   
CONSERVATION  DISTRICT,  spoke  of her  experience  with  the                                                                   
spreading  of  Orange Hawkweed  and  efforts  to prevent  its                                                                   
continued invasion.  She encouraged passage of the bill.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Representative Holm asked if Orange  Hawkweed is north of the                                                                   
range.  Ms.  Renfrew said she does not know.   Representative                                                                   
Holm shared that he has no knowledge  of the weed existing in                                                                   
that area.   Ms. Renfrew  shared characteristics of  the weed                                                                   
and problems with eradication.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Holm asked  which herbicides  would kill  it.                                                                   
Ms.  Renfrew said  Transline and  Milestone,  which does  not                                                                   
impact wetlands.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
2:06:17 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
JANICE CHUMLEY, NIKISKI, CENTRAL  PENINSULA MASTER GARDENERS,                                                                   
related  how  aggressive  and invasive  Orange  Hawkweed  and                                                                   
Purple loosestrife  are.  She  spoke of the dangers  of using                                                                   
herbicides  and  the need  to  prevent importation  of  these                                                                   
weeds.  She testified in support of the bill.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
AL POINDEXTER, ALASKA ASSOCIATION  OF CONSERVATION DISTRICTS,                                                                   
related his programs'  efforts to prevent the  spread of many                                                                   
noxious weeds.  He testified in support of the bill.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Holm asked about  tansy and  the need  to ban                                                                   
the possession  of herbs.   Mr. Poindexter agreed  that tansy                                                                   
is not as  invasive, but he  emphasized the need to  ban non-                                                                   
native weeds  from local areas.   He maintained it is  a good                                                                   
first step.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
2:12:32 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative Holm  voiced concern about a  statewide policy                                                                   
addressing  a regional  problem.   Mr.  Poindexter  suggested                                                                   
that the  problem is  statewide.   Representative Holm  asked                                                                   
how to  get rid of Orange  Hawkweed.  Mr. Poindexter  related                                                                   
that the  areas are  quite small now,  but later  may require                                                                   
herbicides.  Representative Holm  suggested that the path the                                                                   
bill is taking is not sustainable.   Some weeds will not be a                                                                   
problem statewide.   He  questioned if  the policy  should be                                                                   
the  same  statewide.   Mr.  Poindexter  responded  that  the                                                                   
policy should  apply where  the plants show  up.  He  posed a                                                                   
potential problem with gardeners sharing plants.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
2:18:19 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
HANS KLAUSNER,  HOMER SOIL  AND WATER CONSERVATION  DISTRICT,                                                                   
testified  in support  of HB  324.   He  emphasized that  the                                                                   
bill's  strength is  in prevention.    He suggested  possibly                                                                   
adding more plants to the list of noxious weeds.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Representative Holm  inquired about fireweed  and dandelions,                                                                   
and  how they  fit  the definition  of  noxious  weeds.   Mr.                                                                   
Klausner defined weeds as those  that impact native habitats.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
2:23:29 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
JAMIE SNYDER,  UNIVERSITY OF ALASKA FAIRBANKS,  addressed the                                                                   
history of Purple  Loosestrife in Alaska.  She  described the                                                                   
nature  of  the  plant  and  its  invasive  potential.    She                                                                   
suggested that some plants are  more of a problem than others                                                                   
and that  Alaska should  focus on prevention.   She  spoke in                                                                   
support of the bill.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Representative Stoltze shared  that in Montana, Mapweed is an                                                                   
issue.   Ms. Snyder  explained  that a small  patch has  been                                                                   
discovered  in Alaska  with the  potential to  be a  problem.                                                                   
Alaska    can   learn    from    other   states'    problems.                                                                   
Representative Stoltze  noted that limited use  of pesticides                                                                   
added to  the problem.   Ms. Snyder made several  suggestions                                                                   
for prevention and education.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
2:30:59 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Holm   asked  if  Ms.  Synder   is  with  the                                                                   
Cooperative Extension  Service.  She replied that  she is and                                                                   
that she works  out of Anchorage.  Representative  Holm asked                                                                   
if her  program is involved with  eradication of weeds.   She                                                                   
replied  that  is   not,  but  the  mission   is  to  provide                                                                   
information on integrated pest  management.  He asked how her                                                                   
program is  funded.  Ms. Snyder  explained the nature  of her                                                                   
job and  related that  invasive plants are  only part  of the                                                                   
program.    There  is  no  eradication   program  within  the                                                                   
Cooperative Extension Agency.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Holm posed a  hypothetical problem  and asked                                                                   
if  it was  worthy  of a  Class A  misdemeanor.   Ms.  Snyder                                                                   
referred to  the bill as  a stopgap measure.   Representative                                                                   
Holm suggested that cultivating  these plants would result in                                                                   
unfair  punishment.   Ms.  Snyder  suggested  that the  model                                                                   
developed  in other states  regarding  the banning of  Purple                                                                   
Loosestrife  should be  used.  Representative  Holm  asked if                                                                   
her  organization maps  where  these weeds  currently  exist.                                                                   
She replied that they catalogue  the areas, but there is only                                                                   
one  area where  Purple Loosestrife  exists.   Representative                                                                   
Holm asked  if that area was  destroyed.  Ms. Snyder  said it                                                                   
was,  but a lot  of seedlings  remain.   There  is a need  to                                                                   
increase  public  awareness  to   deal  with  new  sightings.                                                                   
Representative Holm noted there  is no fiscal note to address                                                                   
public education.  He suggested that there should be one.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
2:38:31 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative Stoltze asked if  the list should include more                                                                   
plants.   He wondered about  the fiscal  note and a  need for                                                                   
research.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
LARRY   DEVILBISS,   DIRECTOR,   DIVISION   OF   AGRICULTURE,                                                                   
DEPARTMENT OF  NATURAL RESOURCES,  explained that  his agency                                                                   
is in the process  of adding these two plants  to the list of                                                                   
prohibitive plants through the  regulatory process.  There is                                                                   
a need to  update the prohibitive weed list  and regulations.                                                                   
Addressing the  fiscal note question, Mr. DeVilbiss  said the                                                                   
assumption was that there would  be no new staff added.  That                                                                   
would change  if the  department were  to become  responsible                                                                   
for disposing  of the weeds.   He suggested that  regulation,                                                                   
rather than  statute, is a better  way to handle  the problem                                                                   
of invasive plants.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Representative Stoltze asked if  the Forget-Me-Not is a weed.                                                                   
Representative  Holm explained if  a plant naturalizes  in an                                                                   
area, it could  be termed a weed.   He spoke of  the problems                                                                   
and expenses  related to dandelions.   He disagreed  with the                                                                   
harsh punishments in the bill.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
2:44:38 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative Weyhrauch  suggested this issue  be dealt with                                                                   
by regulation.  Mr. DeVilbiss  agreed that there is already a                                                                   
regulatory process in place.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Weyhrauch   questioned  "Meadow  in   a  Can"                                                                   
legality.   Mr. DeVilbiss responded  that the  major importer                                                                   
would know it is prohibited and  it could be monitored at the                                                                   
border.   Representative Holm  asked if  this could  be taken                                                                   
care of on a  regional basis.  Mr. DeVilbiss  replied that it                                                                   
is not  set up  that way,  but it could  be.   Representative                                                                   
Holm suggested that they do it.   Mr. DeVilbiss said they are                                                                   
reviewing it.   Representative Holm emphasized  that it would                                                                   
make more sense to regulate by region.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
2:48:48 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Hawker summarized  the bill as  criminalizing                                                                   
human activity regarding  two plant species.   He wondered if                                                                   
that compared to the Supreme Court  ruling, which states that                                                                   
human  activity   regarding  marijuana  plants   couldn't  be                                                                   
criminalized.  He questioned those implications.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
SABRINA FERNANDEZ, ASSISTANT ATTORNEY  GENERAL, DEPARTMENT OF                                                                   
LAW, shared  an opinion that existing regulations  concerning                                                                   
the  noxious weed  list do  currently have  the same  penalty                                                                   
attached as the proposed legislation.   Representative Hawker                                                                   
spoke  of  a constitutional  challenge  to  existing  statute                                                                   
regarding  plant  species.   He  asked  if the  two  proposed                                                                   
species have any medicinal value.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GABRIELL LEDOUX  said she did not know of any.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
ED  FOGELS,   DEPUTY  COMMISSIONER,  DEPARTMENT   OF  NATURAL                                                                   
RESOURCES,  responded that  the bill  might not be  necessary                                                                   
because it is dealt with by regulation.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Representative Kelly  suggested that Representative  Holm and                                                                   
Representative LeDoux meet in  his office to discuss the bill                                                                   
further.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
HB  324  was   heard  and  HELD  in  Committee   for  further                                                                   
consideration.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
2:53:52 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 343                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     "An Act relating to harassment."                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BOB LYNN related  that correctional  officers                                                                   
and first  responders who want  more protection  from attacks                                                                   
with bodily fluids requested the  bill.  He shared a personal                                                                   
experience working  in a jail  environment.  He  related that                                                                   
attacks with bodily  fluids have been increasing,  as has the                                                                   
danger of infections.   Currently, throwing bodily  fluids at                                                                   
anyone can  only be charged as  a class B misdemeanor.   This                                                                   
bill changes  that to a class  A misdemeanor, with  jail time                                                                   
from zero days to one year.  It  also provides a minimum term                                                                   
of  imprisonment   of  60  days  for  persons   convicted  of                                                                   
harassment in the  first degree when they direct  the offense                                                                   
at certain specified  law enforcement officers  and emergency                                                                   
responders.   He  noted correspondence  included in  members'                                                                   
packets and quoted several examples.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
2:58:42 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
DANIEL  COLANG,   PRESIDENT,  ALASKA  CORRECTIONAL   OFFICERS                                                                   
ASSOCIATION,  related  his  experience   behind  correctional                                                                   
facility walls.  He stressed that  assault with bodily fluids                                                                   
has become prevalent.  He encouraged support of this bill.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Representative Stoltze  asked if saliva is  still prohibited.                                                                   
Representative Lynn said it is.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
3:03:25 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MAE  BARNEY,  CORRECTIONAL  OFFICER,  FAIRBANKS,  shared  her                                                                   
experience with assault  by bodily fluids.   She testified in                                                                   
support of the bill.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
3:07:32 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Weyhrauch  asked if  this  law  applies to  a                                                                   
situation  where a  member of  PETA  would throw  blood at  a                                                                   
person wearing fur.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
MIKE  SICA, STAFF,  REPRESENTATIVE BOB  LYNN, clarified  that                                                                   
the  law  would  apply to  everyone,  not  just  correctional                                                                   
officers.   He referred to page  2, Section 2,  harassment in                                                                   
the  first  degree, to  explain.    Representative  Weyhrauch                                                                   
restated  his question  to  ask  if the  law  would apply  to                                                                   
everyone.   Mr.  Sica responded  that  the mandatory  minimum                                                                   
prison  term of  60  days only  applies  to assaults  against                                                                   
peace officers, medical first responders or professionals.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
3:10:35 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
SUSAN  PARKS,  DEPUTY ATTORNEY  GENERAL,  CRIMINAL  DIVISION,                                                                   
DEPARTMENT OF  LAW, clarified that  the crime would  apply to                                                                   
anyone who is assaulted by bodily  fluids - teacher, citizen,                                                                   
babysitter, and  the criminal could be prosecuted  under this                                                                   
new statute, harassment in the first degree.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative Weyhrauch asked  for clarification between the                                                                   
different kinds  of sentencing.   Ms. Parks referred  to page                                                                   
3,  Section 4,  to  highlight  the sentencing  provision  for                                                                   
crimes against peace officers and medical personnel.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Chenault  asked how many bodily fluid  assault cases                                                                   
there  are  a year.    Ms.  Parks responded  that  there  are                                                                   
probably more cases than what  are prosecuted, which are only                                                                   
a  handful.   They  are a  common  occurrence  and are  often                                                                   
handled administratively  in jail with a loss  of privileges.                                                                   
They are currently a misdemeanor.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Mr.  Colang, in  response  to Co-Chair  Chenault's  question,                                                                   
could not  recall any  statistics regarding  this.   He cited                                                                   
Fairbanks  as an example,  where there  was an incident  last                                                                   
month.  Co-Chair  Chenault opined that it should  be reported                                                                   
every time.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
3:15:08 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Chenault  asked how  many cases  there would  be per                                                                   
year.  He mentioned that there  could be legal costs involved                                                                   
with this  type of case.   He suggested researching  up-front                                                                   
costs.                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
3:16:26 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Parks commented on the fiscal  notes.  She indicated that                                                                   
currently there  are only  a few cases.   She added  that the                                                                   
numbers  could increase.   She speculated  that the  thirteen                                                                   
offices  could absorb  the normal  workload.   She  suggested                                                                   
that the  bill might  have a deterrent  effect and  the costs                                                                   
could decrease.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
3:18:10 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative   Foster  remembered   being  accosted   by  a                                                                   
lobbyist who "spit in his face".                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Representative Hawker pointed  out that the bill would create                                                                   
a crime  of  degrees.   He wondered  if the  bill could  make                                                                   
class A conduct elevate to class B conduct.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Meyer  responded that  some  threats  fall under  a                                                                   
different  statute.   Ms. Parks  added that  there are  other                                                                   
statutes that  elevate the conduct  by the degree and  by the                                                                   
nature of  the conduct.   She  commented that  it would  be a                                                                   
policy call  for the  Legislature to make.   She  thought the                                                                   
subject matter of this bill is of a higher nature.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
3:22:14 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Hawker  asked if  the act  were  sufficiently                                                                   
threatening, would the new category  of a class A misdemeanor                                                                   
be high  enough for the  crime.  Ms.  Parks replied  that the                                                                   
legislature could make that 'call'.   The thought was that it                                                                   
did  not  fit  into  class  C   conduct.    It  should  be  a                                                                   
determination made by the Legislature.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
3:23:49 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative   Stoltze   asked   if   the   Department   of                                                                   
Corrections  made the decision  not to come  to the  table to                                                                   
participate in the discussion.   Mr. Sica took responsibility                                                                   
for not  following up with the  Department.  He did  not want                                                                   
that  to  be  interpreted  that   they  do  not  support  the                                                                   
legislation.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
3:25:07 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Chenault  MOVED  to  REPORT  CSHB  343  (JUD)  with                                                                   
individual  recommendations and  the  attached fiscal  notes.                                                                   
He  voiced concern  about the  fiscal notes  attached to  the                                                                   
bill.  He requested more accurate fiscal notes.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Representative   Stoltz   OBJECTED   for   the   purpose   of                                                                   
discussion.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Kelly pointed  out that  several states  have                                                                   
elevated  this  crime  to  a   felony.    He  reiterated  how                                                                   
offensive the crime is.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Holm added that  the class A misdemeanor  for                                                                   
this crime  was the same as  it was for transporting  noxious                                                                   
weeds.                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Meyer noted the four new fiscal notes.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Joule, referring  to discipline  administered                                                                   
in jails,  commented that, "good  time gets taken away".   He                                                                   
thought that adding time to a  jail sentence would qualify as                                                                   
needing a fiscal note.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
3:29:18 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative Stoltze WITHDREW his OBJECTION.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
There being NO further OBJECTION, it was so ordered.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
HB  343  was REPORTED  out  of  Committee  with a  "do  pass"                                                                   
recommendation  and  with  zero   fiscal  note  #  1  by  the                                                                   
Department of Corrections, zero  note #2 by the Department of                                                                   
Public  Safety,  and  with  new  zero  fiscal  notes  by  the                                                                   
Department  of   Law,  the  Alaska  Court  System,   and  the                                                                   
Department of Administration.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
ADJOURNMENT                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
The meeting was adjourned at 3:29 PM                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                

Document Name Date/Time Subjects