Legislature(2007 - 2008)HOUSE FINANCE 519

03/17/2008 01:30 PM FINANCE


Download Mp3. <- Right click and save file as

* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
-- Meeting Delayed to 2:00 pm Today --
+ HB 236 DECEASED VETERAN DEATH CERTIFICATE/HONOR TELECONFERENCED
Moved CSHB 236(MLV) Out of Committee
+ HB 255 DUAL SENTENCING TELECONFERENCED
<Bill Held Over to 3/18/08>
+ HB 406 COMPETITIVE BIDDING FOR BALLOT PREP TELECONFERENCED
Moved CSHB 406(STA) Out of Committee
+ Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled TELECONFERENCED
+= HB 364 NOTICE & CONSENT FOR MINOR'S ABORTION TELECONFERENCED
Moved CSHB 364(FIN) Out of Committee
+= HB 348 BOARD OF GAME REGULATIONS TELECONFERENCED
Moved CSHB 348(FIN) Out of Committee
+= HB 417 NONUNION PUBLIC EMPLOYEE SALARY & BENEFIT TELECONFERENCED
Moved CSHB 417(FIN) Out of Committee
                  HOUSE FINANCE COMMITTEE                                                                                       
                       March 17, 2008                                                                                           
                         2:21 p.m.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
CALL TO ORDER                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Meyer called the House  Finance Committee meeting to                                                                   
order at 2:21:49 PM.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Representative Mike Chenault, Co-Chair                                                                                          
Representative Kevin Meyer, Co-Chair                                                                                            
Representative Bill Stoltze, Vice-Chair                                                                                         
Representative Harry Crawford                                                                                                   
Representative Les Gara                                                                                                         
Representative Mike Hawker                                                                                                      
Representative Reggie Joule                                                                                                     
Representative Mike Kelly                                                                                                       
Representative Mary Nelson                                                                                                      
Representative Bill Thomas Jr.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
ALSO PRESENT                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Kevin    Brooks,   Deputy    Commissioner,   Department    of                                                                   
Administration;  Suzanne  Armstrong,   Staff,  Representative                                                                   
Kevin Meyer; Representative John  Coghill; Representative Bob                                                                   
Lynn;  Representative  Max  Gruenberg;   Representative  Anna                                                                   
Fairclough;   Vern   Jones,    Chief   Procurement   Officer,                                                                   
Department  of  Administration;   Wayne  Stevens,  President,                                                                   
Alaska State Chamber of Commerce.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
PRESENT VIA TELECONFERENCE                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Chaz  Simmons,  Sales  Manager,  Service  Business  Printing,                                                                   
Anchorage; Kerry Noblin, Peninsula Printing, Kenai.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
SUMMARY                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
HB 236    An  Act relating to  providing a death  certificate                                                                   
          for a deceased veteran without cost; relating to a                                                                    
          program to honor the memory of a deceased veteran;                                                                    
          and providing for an effective date.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
          CS HB 236 (MLV) was REPORTED out of Committee with                                                                    
          a "do  pass" recommendation  and with  attached new                                                                   
          fiscal  note  by  the Department  of  Military  and                                                                   
          Veterans  Affairs  and   new  fiscal  note  by  the                                                                   
         Department of Health and Social Services.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
HB 255    An  Act  relating  to dual  sentencing  of  certain                                                                   
          juvenile  offenders;  amending  Rule  24.1,  Alaska                                                                   
          Delinquency  Rules; and providing for  an effective                                                                   
          date.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
          HB 255 was SCHEDULED but not HEARD.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
HB 348    An Act  relating to the adoption of  regulations by                                                                   
          the Board of Fisheries and the Board of Game.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
          CS SS HB 348 (FIN) was REPORTED out of Committee                                                                      
          with "no  recommendation" and attached  fiscal note                                                                   
          #2  by the Department  of Law  and new zero  fiscal                                                                   
          note by the Department of Fish and Game.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
HB 364    An  Act  relating  to  notice  and  consent  for  a                                                                   
          minor's   abortion;  relating   to  penalties   for                                                                   
          performing  an  abortion;  relating to  a  judicial                                                                   
          bypass  procedure  for  an  abortion;  relating  to                                                                   
          coercion of  a minor to have an  abortion; relating                                                                   
          to  reporting  of abortions  performed  on  minors;                                                                   
          amending   Rule  24(a),   Alaska  Rules   of  Civil                                                                   
          Procedure,  amending  Rule  220,  Alaska  Rules  of                                                                   
          Appellate  Procedure, and  Rule 20, Alaska  Probate                                                                   
          Rules,   relating  to   judicial   bypass  for   an                                                                   
          abortion; and providing for an effective date.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
          CS HB 364 (FIN) was REPORTED out of Committee with                                                                    
          individual   recommendations   and  attached   zero                                                                   
          fiscal  note #1  by  the Department  of Health  and                                                                   
          Social  Services,  new  zero  fiscal  note  by  the                                                                   
          Department  of  Administration,  new  indeterminate                                                                   
          fiscal note by the Department  of Law, and new zero                                                                   
          fiscal note by the Alaska Court System.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
HB 406    An  Act relating to  a requirement for  competitive                                                                   
          bidding  on   contracts  for  the   preparation  of                                                                   
          election ballots.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
          CS HB 406 (STA) was REPORTED out of Committee with                                                                    
          a "do  pass" recommendation and with  attached zero                                                                   
          fiscal note #1 by the Office of the Governor.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
HB 417    An  Act relating  to the  compensation for  certain                                                                   
          public  officials,   officers,  and  employees  not                                                                   
          covered   by  collective   bargaining   agreements;                                                                   
          relating to  pay increments for longevity  in state                                                                   
          service; and providing for an effective date.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
          CSHB  417(FIN) was REPORTED  out of Committee  with                                                                   
          "no  recommendation" and  attached new fiscal  note                                                                   
          by the Alaska Court  System, new fiscal note by the                                                                   
          Legislative Affairs  Agency, and new fiscal note by                                                                   
          the Office of Management and Budget.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
2:22:12 PM                                                                                                                    
HOUSE BILL NO. 417                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     An Act relating  to the compensation for  certain public                                                                   
     officials,  officers,  and   employees  not  covered  by                                                                   
     collective  bargaining   agreements;  relating   to  pay                                                                   
     increments   for  longevity   in   state  service;   and                                                                   
     providing for an effective date.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Meyer  reminded the Committee  of the status  of the                                                                   
bill and described the fiscal notes.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Gara  recapped previous  questions  regarding                                                                   
employee  shortages the  State is  facing due  to the  salary                                                                   
schedule and salary review system.  He had asked Commissioner                                                                   
Kreitzer the conditions  under which it would  possible to go                                                                   
from step A to F in order to hire someone.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
2:25:36 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
KEVIN    BROOKS,   DEPUTY    COMMISSIONER,   DEPARTMENT    OF                                                                   
ADMINISTRATION (DOA),  replied that currently there  is not a                                                                   
mechanism for granting advanced  steps based on a shortage in                                                                   
a job classification.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Gara  thought   the  system  was  arcane.  He                                                                   
thought  HB 417  should be  able  to do  something about  the                                                                   
situation. He  wanted a provision  saying an employer  can go                                                                   
between steps  if needed to  fill a position.  Co-Chair Meyer                                                                   
was  not sure  HB 417  was  the right  bill  for the  change.                                                                   
Representative Gara  thought the bill was the  right place to                                                                   
change the  hiring system to  allow a department  to exercise                                                                   
discretion rather  than having  the Legislature  telling them                                                                   
what to pay people.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Brooks  acknowledged Representative  Gara's point,  which                                                                   
addressed  the  primary  reasons  for  the  creation  of  the                                                                   
Administrative  Workgroup on Recruitment  and Retention.  The                                                                   
Department of Administration has  found different impediments                                                                   
in the  hiring system in  different departments. The  goal is                                                                   
to  look  at   the  entire  system,  including   geographical                                                                   
differences, the  classification system, and the  pay system.                                                                   
The situation is complex, but  the Department is committed to                                                                   
working through the problems.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
2:29:11 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Mr.  Brooks added  that  there  is some  flexibility  through                                                                   
using  the criteria  of recruitment  difficulty,  exceptional                                                                   
qualifications,  or  both.  Recruitment   difficulty  is  the                                                                   
factor  that   addresses  shortages.  Some   departments  are                                                                   
limiting themselves by doing State-only  recruitments, and he                                                                   
worried that that limited candidate pools.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Gara stated  that  sometimes  the problem  is                                                                   
that the  salary offered is  inadequate, regardless  of other                                                                   
criteria. He  wanted to address  the issue of the  ability to                                                                   
pay more in those situations.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Brooks promised  that DOA is looking at where  there is a                                                                   
shortage of  workers, and said  in those cases there  is some                                                                   
ability to offer a higher step.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
2:33:34 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Joule thought  there might  be two  different                                                                   
discussions.  Mr. Brooks  said  similar issues  do exist  for                                                                   
both union and non-union groups,  but the bill addresses non-                                                                   
covered employees.  In many cases  the solutions will  be the                                                                   
same, including adjusting pay.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Meyer  asked  if there  were  classifications  with                                                                   
flexibility to  go above the  normal grade range.  Mr. Brooks                                                                   
replied  that there  were fully  exempt classifications,  oil                                                                   
and  gas positions  specifically, paid  on salary  overrides;                                                                   
they  get paid  what  the market  will  bear. Co-Chair  Meyer                                                                   
wondered   if  similar   strategy  could   be  used   in  the                                                                   
departments.  Mr.  Brooks  replied  that  would  mean  moving                                                                   
classified  employees  to  the  exempt  service,  from  union                                                                   
representation    to    non-union     representation,    with                                                                   
accompanying challenges and issues.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Gara turned the  discussion to the  non-union                                                                   
employee  issue.  He  said  there  are  still  shortages.  He                                                                   
thought  a provision  could be  put into the  bill along  the                                                                   
lines of:  "The commissioner  of an agency  may offer  any of                                                                   
these step  ranges if  needed to fill  an open position."  He                                                                   
wanted  give the agency  commissioner  the authority  to make                                                                   
the  decision  as  needed.  Mr.   Brooks  believed  that  the                                                                   
authority  already  exists  for   non-classified,  non-union,                                                                   
fully  or  partially   exempt  employees,  where   there  are                                                                   
shortages.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
2:37:54 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative Gara asked if the  agency could offer up to an                                                                   
F step  if needed  to fill a  shortage. Mr. Brooks  responded                                                                   
that there  is nothing that simple.  Criteria are set  to try                                                                   
and  maintain  consistency in  the  pay system.  The  typical                                                                   
criteria used are recruitment  difficulty, as demonstrated by                                                                   
a   lack    of   qualified    candidates,   or    exceptional                                                                   
qualifications, or both.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Kelly  commented  that  the  difficulty  with                                                                   
making it  too easy to  go to an  F step is that  supervisors                                                                   
can do it  for the wrong  reasons and throw the  whole system                                                                   
off. He thought it would be difficult  to make such a complex                                                                   
change with an amendment.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Meyer  pointed out that  there was not  an amendment                                                                   
yet.                                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
2:40:34 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative Gara  asked if the  ability to move from  an A                                                                   
to an  F because of  a shortage  applied to union  employees.                                                                   
Mr. Brooks answered  that an agency can and does  offer up to                                                                   
an F, using the same criteria.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Chenault  MOVED  to  REPORT CSHB  417(FIN)  out  of                                                                   
Committee  with individual recommendations  and attached  new                                                                   
fiscal note  by the Alaska Court  System, new fiscal  note by                                                                   
the Legislative  Affairs Agency, and  new fiscal note  by the                                                                   
Office of Management and Budget.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Representative Gara  OBJECTED for discussion. He  stated that                                                                   
there are major  shortages and that he was  very dissatisfied                                                                   
with the Administration's answers.  He thought the attempt to                                                                   
keep the  budget down  resulted in a  refusal to  address the                                                                   
reality that many  people are being underpaid.  The bill will                                                                   
help non-union employees get pay  increases as they get older                                                                   
and  their expenses  go  up. The  bill  will  not help  union                                                                   
people if  the union  isn't powerful enough  to get  the same                                                                   
thing into  a labor  contract. He did  not agree  that people                                                                   
should be treated differently  because of being union or non-                                                                   
union. A  human being should not  be left at the  same salary                                                                   
level, especially  taking into  consideration cost  of living                                                                   
changes.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Gara WITHDREW his  OBJECTION. There  being NO                                                                   
further OBJECTION, it was so ordered.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
CSHB  417(FIN)  was  REPORTED   out  of  Committee  with  "no                                                                   
recommendation"  and attached new  fiscal note by  the Alaska                                                                   
Court  System, new  fiscal note  by  the Legislative  Affairs                                                                   
Agency, and new  fiscal note by the Office  of Management and                                                                   
Budget.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 348                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     An Act relating to the adoption of regulations by the                                                                      
     Board of Fisheries and the Board of Game.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
2:44:56 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Vice-Chair Stoltze MOVED to REPORT  CS SS HB 348 (FIN) out of                                                                   
Committee  with   individual  recommendations   and  attached                                                                   
fiscal note #2  by the Department of Law and  new zero fiscal                                                                   
note  by the  Department of  Fish  and Game.  There being  NO                                                                   
OBJECTION, it was so ordered.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
CS SS  HB 348 (FIN)  was REPORTED out  of Committee  with "no                                                                   
recommendation"   and  attached   fiscal  note   #2  by   the                                                                   
Department of Law and new zero  fiscal note by the Department                                                                   
of Fish and Game.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
AT EASE:       2:46:40 PM                                                                                                     
RECONVENE:     2:47:19 PM                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 364                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     An  Act relating  to notice  and consent  for a  minor's                                                                   
     abortion;  relating  to   penalties  for  performing  an                                                                   
     abortion;  relating to a  judicial bypass procedure  for                                                                   
     an abortion; relating to  coercion of a minor to have an                                                                   
     abortion; relating  to reporting of  abortions performed                                                                   
     on minors;  amending Rule  24(a), Alaska Rules  of Civil                                                                   
     Procedure, amending Rule  220, Alaska Rules of Appellate                                                                   
     Procedure, and  Rule 20, Alaska Probate  Rules, relating                                                                   
     to judicial  bypass for an  abortion; and  providing for                                                                   
     an effective date.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
2:47:56 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Meyer reviewed the history  of HB 364 in the Finance                                                                   
Committee.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Meyer MOVED to ADOPT Amendment #1 (Copy on File):                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     Page 6, line 7: After "without", Insert "Notice to                                                                         
     or"                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Representative Hawker OBJECTED for discussion.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
SUZANNE  ARMSTRONG,  STAFF,  REPRESENTATIVE  CO-CHAIR  MEYER,                                                                   
explained  the Amendment  as a  technical clean-up  amendment                                                                   
that  inserts  language  to  make the  version  of  the  bill                                                                   
consistent with other draftings.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Representative Hawker WITHDREW his OBJECTION.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Vice-Chair Stoltze OBJECTED for discussion.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE JOHN  COGHILL, Sponsor, testified  that he had                                                                   
no objection to the Amendment.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Vice-Chair  Stoltze removed  his  OBJECTION.  There being  NO                                                                   
further OBJECTION, Amendment #1 was adopted.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Gara   MOVED  to  ADOPT  Amendment   #2  (25-                                                                   
LS1406\E.1, Mischel, 3/12/08, Copy on File):                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
        Page 2, line 29: Delete "medical instability                                                                          
     caused by a"                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Vice-Chair Stoltze OBJECTED.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
2:50:08 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative Gara  turned to page  2, line 29 of  the bill.                                                                   
He explained that the previous  consent law stipulates that a                                                                   
person  does not have  to wait  and get  parental notice  and                                                                   
consent if  the delay  in the abortion  will cause  the minor                                                                   
"substantial  and irreversible impairment  of a major  bodily                                                                   
function." He  thought the  rule seemed reasonable.  However,                                                                   
HB 364 adds  another condition that the abortion  can only be                                                                   
performed  if  the delay  will  cause  "medical  instability"                                                                   
caused  by an  irreversible impairment.  Representative  Gara                                                                   
objected  to the additional  language  and wanted it  removed                                                                   
through the Amendment.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Representative Coghill objected  to the Amendment. He pointed                                                                   
out that the language "medical  instability" is commonly used                                                                   
in  medical emergencies.  He defines  abortion  as a  medical                                                                   
emergency. The  medical emergency is being determined  by the                                                                   
doctor. He thought "medical stability" should be a factor.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Gara answered that  not allowing  an abortion                                                                   
could cause  lasting and  substantial injury  to a  woman. He                                                                   
thought  the current standard  was good  enough. An  abortion                                                                   
should be allowed  if prevention of the abortion  would cause                                                                   
a woman  substantial  and irreversible  injury. The  question                                                                   
becomes whether  the additional language addresses  this kind                                                                   
of injury.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Coghill answered that  the fact that  a delay                                                                   
could cause  a medical instability is  appropriate especially                                                                   
when  we rely  on the  good faith  clinical  judgment of  the                                                                   
doctor.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Gara  did  not like  adopting  medical  terms                                                                   
without knowing  what they mean. He wanted  medical testimony                                                                   
to show  which injuries  the bill  allows to  be caused  to a                                                                   
woman and which injuries are not.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
2:54:11 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Coghill  said  the same  amendment  had  come                                                                   
before another committee. There  was legal testimony but none                                                                   
from  a doctor.  He  clarified that  the  sponsors intend  to                                                                   
define,  for the  purposes  of this  particular  law, what  a                                                                   
medical emergency is. He had not  intended to line up medical                                                                   
testimony, although  he could.  Co-Chair Meyer did  not think                                                                   
additional testimony was necessary.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Vice-Chair Stoltze MAINTAINED his OBJECTION.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
A roll call vote was taken on the motion.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
IN FAVOR: Gara, Joule, Nelson                                                                                                   
OPPOSED: Harris, Hawker, Kelly, Stoltze, Thomas, Meyer                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Absent from the vote: Crawford, Chenault                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
The MOTION FAILED (3/6).                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
2:56:23 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Gara   MOVED  to  ADOPT  Amendment   #3  (25-                                                                   
LS1406\E.2, Mischel, 3/12/08, Copy on File):                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
     Page 3, line 6: Delete "not less than 48 hours"                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Vice-Chair Stoltze OBJECTED.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Gara turned to  page 3, line  6 of  the bill.                                                                   
The  way the  bill is  written, if  a young  woman gives  the                                                                   
parents  notice   and  gets  parental  consent   to  have  an                                                                   
abortion, she still cannot have an abortion without a 48-                                                                       
hour wait. He thought it was not  appropriate to have to wait                                                                   
48 hours. There  is no other major medical  procedure where a                                                                   
mandatory  wait applies.  He  referred  to earlier  testimony                                                                   
that it sometimes takes up to  ten weeks for a young woman to                                                                   
find out  she is  pregnant. By  then the  first trimester  is                                                                   
nearly over, and there is no place  to get a second-trimester                                                                   
abortion in Alaska. He described  a scenario of a young woman                                                                   
trying to make the decisions who  has to go to the court, the                                                                   
doctor's office  and so on. Even  after all that, she  has to                                                                   
wait another  48 hours. This tells  women who have  the legal                                                                   
right to have an  abortion that they are not  allowed to have                                                                   
one because  of a deadline. He  asserted that the  bill would                                                                   
be deemed unconstitutional and that it was not right.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Coghill  spoke   against  the  Amendment.  He                                                                   
thought two days'  notification to the minor's  custodian was                                                                   
reasonable.  He wanted to  have notice in  case a  person was                                                                   
trying  to manipulate  the system.  If the  words were  taken                                                                   
out, the bill  would say "notice before the  abortion," which                                                                   
could be  minutes. For other  medical procedures  there would                                                                   
be a  variety of  different times  either for preparation  or                                                                   
for time  to get  to or  from the  appointment. He  described                                                                   
surgeries that he had to wait 72 hours for.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Representative Gara  maintained that there is  no similar law                                                                   
for men.  House Bill  364 will  tell a  woman that,  unlike a                                                                   
man, after  a certain day, she  cannot have the  surgery. Men                                                                   
have the  luxury of waiting a  few extra days that  women who                                                                   
are seeking  an abortion do not  have. In addition,  the bill                                                                   
requires consent.  If she has the consent of  the parent, she                                                                   
should not have to wait another 48 hours.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Coghill did not  know of  any other  place in                                                                   
society  that jurisprudence  has  been so  highly focused  as                                                                   
abortion  and   parental  consent.  With  regards   to  other                                                                   
procedures, few have been litigated  to the same degree. Some                                                                   
value individual freedom highly,  and others value the unborn                                                                   
child highly.  Those two values  are in tension.  He believed                                                                   
there should  be reasonable notification. He  thought doctors                                                                   
would require at least two days of preparatory work anyway.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
3:02:38 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Kelly  asked if  Representative  Coghill  had                                                                   
started  with  a higher  number  of hours  for  notification.                                                                   
Representative  Coghill relied  that he  had started  with 72                                                                   
hours; after  visiting abortion  clinics he became  convinced                                                                   
that two  days was  adequate. Representative  Kelly  spoke to                                                                   
the risk of terminating a human  being and thought a 48 hours                                                                   
wait was reasonable.  He would like the waiting  period to be                                                                   
longer.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Gara  queried  if there  were  any  procedure                                                                   
where  a  man is  required  to  wait  48 hours  after  giving                                                                   
consent. Representative Coghill replied not by law.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
3:04:22 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative Gara asserted that  he had an equal protection                                                                   
issue with the bill if men are  not required to wait 48 hours                                                                   
before having any kind of surgery.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Coghill  did not  know of  any  male who  had                                                                   
gotten an  abortion. He felt men  had been excluded  from the                                                                   
choice of  abortion. The  equal protection  issue for  him is                                                                   
with the father of the unborn child.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Gara thought the  48-hour issue  would divide                                                                   
people into people  who were against abortion  and people who                                                                   
were for the  choice to have an abortion. The  48-hour notice                                                                   
is  not medically  justified.  It divides  people. He  argued                                                                   
that the  real purpose of the  48-hour waiting period  was to                                                                   
decrease  the  chances of  a  woman  having a  valid,  legal,                                                                   
first-trimester abortion.  There is no other area  of the law                                                                   
where this  happens. That  makes this  bill not really  about                                                                   
parental consent,  but parental  consent plus taking  another                                                                   
shot at trying to prevent someone from getting an abortion.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
3:07:08 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Coghill replied  that the  provision was  not                                                                   
meant to  be prohibitive, but  to respect the  parental right                                                                   
to  be involved  in  the decision.  He  stated  that men  are                                                                   
parents as well as women.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Kelly  speculated  that  a  having  vasectomy                                                                   
requires a  cooling off period.  During that period  a person                                                                   
might  get counseling  in  order  to carefully  think  things                                                                   
through.  He felt  since  the decision  to  have an  abortion                                                                   
involved  human  life,  the waiting  period  should  be  much                                                                   
longer.  He referred  to  testimony that  abortion  providers                                                                   
make sure there is counseling  so the person has to face what                                                                   
an abortion is.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Vice-Chair Stoltze MAINTAINED his OBJECTION.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
A roll call vote was taken on the motion.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
IN FAVOR: Gara, Joule, Nelson                                                                                                   
OPPOSED: Hawker, Kelly, Stoltz, Thomas, Harris                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Absent for the vote: Chenault, Crawford                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
The MOTION FAILED (3/6).                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Gara   MOVED  to  ADOPT  Amendment   #4  (25-                                                                   
LS1406\E.3, Mischel, 3/13/08, Copy on File):                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
    Page 3, line 15, following  "victim": Insert "or has                                                                        
    a reasonable  fear  of becoming a  victim"; Page  3,                                                                        
    line 18,  following "by": Insert "the  minor."; Page                                                                        
    3, lines 19-28: Delete all material.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Vice-Chair Stoltze OBJECTED.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
3:10:09 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative Gara described  the Amendment as an attempt to                                                                   
address one of  his major objections to the  bill. He thought                                                                   
it  was one  thing telling  a minor  with supportive  parents                                                                   
that she needs to talk to them  before having an abortion. It                                                                   
was another  thing to tell a  minor who has been  sexually or                                                                   
physically abused  that she has  to tell the parent  that she                                                                   
is  pregnant and  get  permission to  have  an abortion.  The                                                                   
Amendment  says  that  if  a minor  has  reasonable  fear  of                                                                   
physical or sexual abuse, or if  they have been physically or                                                                   
sexually abused in  the past by a parent, they  simply do not                                                                   
have  to  get  parental  consent.  The  way  the  bill  reads                                                                   
currently, the child has to get  an affidavit where the child                                                                   
says she will be  abused, and then she has to  get a witness.                                                                   
Representative Gara  was concerned that the  witness would go                                                                   
to the  parent and  inform the  parent that  the daughter  is                                                                   
about  to get  an abortion.  If  the girl  goes  to a  family                                                                   
member,  the family  member  may inform  the  parent. If  she                                                                   
turns to a law enforcement officer,  that officer might go to                                                                   
the parent.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Gara explained  that his  provision makes  it                                                                   
sufficient  for  the  child  to   sign  an  affidavit,  under                                                                   
penalties of  perjury, and  give it to  the doctor.  A parent                                                                   
who has  abused a child has  lost the right to  regulate that                                                                   
child's life.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Coghill  agreed that  when  a  young girl  is                                                                   
abused, she  is afraid; pregnancy  intensifies that  fear. He                                                                   
explained the  section as the  third condition under  which a                                                                   
doctor may  perform an abortion  for a minor. The  others are                                                                   
parental consent  and emancipation.  If the child  is abused,                                                                   
she is not required  to go to court. The doctor  can make the                                                                   
decision, but Representative Coghill  did not want the doctor                                                                   
to be able  to do that. He  thought it would be wise  to have                                                                   
an  authority  figure  involved.  He  acknowledged  that  the                                                                   
abusive  parent could  find  out because  of  that. He  would                                                                   
rather have law  enforcement, health and social  services, or                                                                   
a safe  family member  involved. He does  not want  to delete                                                                   
the material  and leave the  decision between the  doctor and                                                                   
the minor  child because  of doctors who  could fall  prey to                                                                   
the motive of making money off the abortion.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
3:16:26 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative Gara  did not think there were  doctors making                                                                   
a profit  providing abortions.  He clarified  that under  the                                                                   
Amendment, the decision  is not only between  the young woman                                                                   
and her doctor.  The young woman is also required  to sign an                                                                   
affidavit or she could go to jail  for lying. He thought that                                                                   
was sufficient protection.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Vice-Chair Stoltze MAINTAINED his OBJECTION.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
A roll call vote was taken on the motion.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
IN FAVOR: Joule, Nelson, Gara                                                                                                   
OPPOSED: Hawker, Kelly, Stoltze, Thomas, Harris, Meyer                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Absent from the Vote: Crawford, Chenault                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
The MOTION FAILED (3/6).                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
3:18:46 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Gara   MOVED  to  ADOPT  Amendment   #5  (25-                                                                   
LS1406\E.4, Mischel 3/12/08, Copy on File):                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     Page 7, line 25, following "abortion": Insert "or                                                                          
        to bear a child"; Page 7, line 28, following                                                                            
     "abortion": Insert "or to bear a child"                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Vice-Chair Stoltze OBJECTED.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative Gara  turned to page 7, line 24  which he felt                                                                   
creates  a new crime:  coercing  a minor who  is pregnant  to                                                                   
have an abortion. He thought it  should be a crime to coerce,                                                                   
defined in  the bill as "to  restrain or dominate a  minor by                                                                   
force," a minor to have an abortion,  but it should also be a                                                                   
crime to restrain  or dominate a minor by force  to make them                                                                   
bear a  child. He  thought coercing  a child  would be  wrong                                                                   
regardless of the stance towards abortion.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Coghill  turned to  section  1  of the  bill,                                                                   
subsection (a),  which lists the  exceptions to  "an abortion                                                                   
may not be performed in this state."  He pointed out that the                                                                   
topic at  hand is whether parents  should be involved  in the                                                                   
consent  for an  abortion. The  topic is  abortion. He  spoke                                                                   
against the Amendment,  not because he thinks  a child should                                                                   
be coerced  to have a  child, but because  it would  create a                                                                   
precedence in law that concerns him.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
3:21:56 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative Gara  thought the bill as written  would cause                                                                   
legal problems. He  thought it made it all  right to threaten                                                                   
a child if she doesn't agree to  have a baby. The bill treats                                                                   
people different depending on  what side of the pro-life/pro-                                                                   
choice issue they are on.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Representative Gara WITHDREW Amendment #5.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Meyer referred to fiscal notes.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
AT EASE:       3:24:24 PM                                                                                                     
RECONVENE:     3:26:10 PM                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Vice-Chair Stoltze  MOVED to REPORT  HB 364 out  of Committee                                                                   
with  individual  recommendations  and attached  zero  fiscal                                                                   
note #1 by the Department of Health  and Social Services, new                                                                   
zero fiscal  note by  the Department  of Administration,  new                                                                   
indeterminate fiscal  note by the Department of  Law, and new                                                                   
zero fiscal note by the Alaska Court System.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative Gara OBJECTED for discussion.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
3:26:57 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Gara referred to  a memo from  the Department                                                                   
of Law  concluding that  HB 364  is likely  unconstitutional.                                                                   
The bill is  probably more restrictive than the  one that was                                                                   
already deemed  unconstitutional. He thought the  zero fiscal                                                                   
note  from the  Department  of Law  curious,  since the  last                                                                   
litigation cost over  $1 million. He thought  the fiscal note                                                                   
should  reflect  the  cost  of  a  probable  fight  over  the                                                                   
constitutionality  of the  bill.  He pointed  out that  there                                                                   
should  also be a  fiscal note  from the  Public Defender  or                                                                   
Office  of  Public   Advocacy,  since  they   would  have  to                                                                   
represent   women  connected   with   the  judicial   by-pass                                                                   
proceeding. The Department of  Law should have another fiscal                                                                   
note over  the costs of defending  the other side of  the by-                                                                   
pass issue.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Representative Gara WITHDREW his OBJECTION.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Representative Kelly OBJECTED for discussion.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Representative   Kelly  referred   to  the   memo  from   the                                                                   
Department of  Law. He interpreted  the memo as  stating that                                                                   
notification would likely survive,  and the outcome regarding                                                                   
the constitutionality  of required consent would  be dubious.                                                                   
The  memo goes  on to  state that  the recent  change in  the                                                                   
composition of the  court could have a bearing  on the issues                                                                   
(Copy on File).                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
3:29:27 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative Kelly REMOVED his OBJECTION.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Representative Gara OBJECTED.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Gara reiterated that  whatever the  result of                                                                   
litigation, it would  cost a lot of money.  He maintained the                                                                   
Committee should have true fiscal  notes from departments and                                                                   
that the current fiscal notes were not true.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative Gara REMOVED his OBJECTION.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
CS  HB  364   (FIN)  was  REPORTED  out  of   Committee  with                                                                   
individual recommendations  and attached zero fiscal  note #1                                                                   
by the  Department of  Health and  Social Services,  new zero                                                                   
fiscal  note   by  the  Department  of   Administration,  new                                                                   
indeterminate fiscal  note by the Department of  Law, and new                                                                   
zero fiscal note by the Alaska Court System.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 236                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     An Act relating  to providing a death certificate  for a                                                                   
     deceased veteran without  cost; relating to a program to                                                                   
     honor the  memory of a  deceased veteran;  and providing                                                                   
     for an effective date.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BOB LYNN,  SPONSOR, spoke  in support  of the                                                                   
bill.                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
3:31:31 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  MAX GRUENBERG,  SPONSOR, introduced  the bill                                                                   
on behalf  of the  State Affairs  Committee. Section  1 gives                                                                   
deceased veterans'  families a copy of the  death certificate                                                                   
to  be used  for official  benefits. Section  2 provides  for                                                                   
honoring   deceased  veterans   by   through  a   certificate                                                                   
expressing   the  State's   grateful   recognition  for   the                                                                   
veteran's service.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Representative Gruenberg  explained the fiscal  note from the                                                                   
Department  of Military  and  Veterans  Affairs for  $50,000,                                                                   
which reflects the cost of the death certificates.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
3:34:46 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Meyer reported the two fiscal notes.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Vice-Chair Stoltze  MOVED to report  HB 236 out  of Committee                                                                   
with individual recommendations  and attached new fiscal note                                                                   
by the  Department of Military  and Veterans Affairs  and new                                                                   
fiscal note by the Department  of Health and Social Services.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
There being NO OBJECTION, it was so ordered.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CS HB  236 (MLV)  was REPORTED  out of  Committee with  a "do                                                                   
pass" recommendation  and  with attached  new fiscal  note by                                                                   
the  Department  of Military  and  Veterans Affairs  and  new                                                                   
fiscal note by the Department  of Health and Social Services.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
3:36:44 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 406                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     An Act relating to a requirement for competitive                                                                           
     bidding on contracts for the preparation of election                                                                       
     ballots.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  ANNA  FAIRCLOUGH,   SPONSOR,  presented  CSHB                                                                   
406(STA), an act relating to contracting  for the preparation                                                                   
of  election ballots.    The bill  allows  a competitive  bid                                                                   
proposal to  be submitted to  the Division of  Elections. The                                                                   
Division  can set  parameters for  quality, site  inspection,                                                                   
testing,  a  period  for the  award,  and  accountability  of                                                                   
delivering ballots.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Fairclough noted  that the only  non-resolved                                                                   
issue is the "Alaska product"  preference on page 4, line 28.                                                                   
She explained  that any  printer in the  state of  Alaska can                                                                   
become contracted as a preferential  provider. The purpose is                                                                   
to promote Alaska hire.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Crawford asked what  the genesis of  the bill                                                                   
was. Representative  Fairclough explained that  she was asked                                                                   
why Elections  was exempt from  the procurement  process. She                                                                   
decided to  work to  create an  open and competitive  process                                                                   
for Alaskans.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
3:41:48 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative Thomas asked about  penalties.  Representative                                                                   
Fairclough   replied  that   all  printers   would  be   held                                                                   
accountable  to  be timely  and  accurate  in all  they  were                                                                   
contracted for.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Gara  asked if  there  could  be a  situation                                                                   
where a dissatisfied  bidder could slow down  the process for                                                                   
getting out a ballot. Representative  Fairclough replied that                                                                   
the time and  quality assurance would be inside  the proposal                                                                   
process.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
VERN  JONES,   CHIEF  PROCUREMENT   OFFICER,  DEPARTMENT   OF                                                                   
ADMINISTRATION,  explained  that  there  would be  a  protest                                                                   
process  included.   The  bill  is  silent   on  protest  but                                                                   
procurement code  procedures would  be followed.  There would                                                                   
be term contracts  for a number of years to  allow sufficient                                                                   
time for appeals and other eventualities.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
3:44:55 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative   Kelly  asked   about   the  Alaska   product                                                                   
provision.  Mr.  Jones  responded  that  the  bill  does  not                                                                   
subject  the printing  of ballots  to  the procurement  code,                                                                   
where the Alaska  better preference, product  preference, and                                                                   
other preferences  reside.  The bill  brings in a  preference                                                                   
identical  to the  procurement code.   The  concern with  the                                                                   
"Alaska  Product" preference  is  a timing  issue.  Currently                                                                   
there is  only one printer on  the list. Many  other printers                                                                   
could get  on the list eventually,  but a company must  be on                                                                   
the list  30 days prior  to the issuance  of the  request for                                                                   
proposals  to qualify.  It then takes  approximately  30 days                                                                   
for the Department  of Commerce to process an  application to                                                                   
be placed on the  list, but the list is only  published twice                                                                   
each  year.  This  could  present  a  problem.  He  suggested                                                                   
increasing   the  Alaska   bidder   preference  by   whatever                                                                   
percentage, and eliminate the product preference.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
3:47:35 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Fairclough  explained  that  the  bill  would                                                                   
become effective in January of  2009. All printers are put on                                                                   
notice.  She personally  contacted  the  current vendor  that                                                                   
currently  holds the  contract.  She noted  that the  current                                                                   
provider has done  a great job for the State;  the bill is in                                                                   
no way a reflection of any performance  concern.  She went on                                                                   
to say  that if  there is  wording for  Alaska preference  it                                                                   
could  cause   problems  as  this  is  not   consistent  with                                                                   
procurement law.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
3:49:16 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Meyer opened public testimony.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
WAYNE STEVENS,  PRESIDENT, ALASKA STATE CHAMBER  OF COMMERCE,                                                                   
spoke  in  support   of  the  changes  to  provide   for  the                                                                   
competitive  bidding   process  and  the  "Made   in  Alaska"                                                                   
preference.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAZ  SIMMONS,  SALES  MANAGER,  SERVICE  BUSINESS  PRINTING,                                                                   
ANCHORAGE  (Testified   via  teleconference),   testified  in                                                                   
support  of  the  bill.  He agrees  with  the  principals  of                                                                   
competitive bidding. He thought  many Alaskan companies would                                                                   
be able to perform on the product.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
3:51:06 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
KERRY  NOBLIN,   PENISULA  PRINTING,  KENAI   (Testified  via                                                                   
teleconference), spoke in support  HB 406.  He underlined the                                                                   
fact  that  currently  there is  only  one  printing  company                                                                   
contracted by the Division of Elections.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
3:53:12 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
PUBLIC TESTIMONY CLOSED.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Fairclough clarified  that preparing  ballots                                                                   
is  not a  simple process,  but requires  exactness and  high                                                                   
quality.  She  stressed the  importance  of the  Division  of                                                                   
Elections being allowed the utmost scrutiny on any bidder.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Chenault  MOVED to  REPORT HB  406 out of  Committee                                                                   
with  individual  recommendations  and attached  zero  fiscal                                                                   
note #1 by the Office of the Governor.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
CS HB  406 (STA)  was REPORTED  out of  Committee with  a "do                                                                   
pass" recommendation  and with  attached zero fiscal  note #1                                                                   
by the Office of the Governor.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 255                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     An Act relating to dual sentencing of certain juvenile                                                                     
     offenders; amending Rule 24.1, Alaska Delinquency                                                                          
     Rules; and providing for an effective date.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
HB 255 was SCHEDULED but not HEARD.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
ADJOURNMENT                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
The meeting was adjourned at 3:57 PM.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                

Document Name Date/Time Subjects