Legislature(2015 - 2016)BILL RAY CENTER 208

05/16/2016 06:00 PM FINANCE

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06:07:06 PM Start
06:07:34 PM SB138
06:08:24 PM Public Testimony
07:33:17 PM Adjourn
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
-- Recessed to a Call of the Chair --
Heard & Held
-- Public Testimony <Time Limit 2 min./person> --
- Please sign in 30 min. prior to end of allotted
time or testimony will close early
+ Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled TELECONFERENCED
                  HOUSE FINANCE COMMITTEE                                                                                       
                       May 16, 2016                                                                                             
                         6:07 p.m.                                                                                              
6:07:06 PM                                                                                                                    
CALL TO ORDER                                                                                                                 
Co-Chair  Thompson   called  the  House   Finance  Committee                                                                    
meeting to order at 6:07 p.m.                                                                                                   
MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                               
Representative Mark Neuman, Co-Chair                                                                                            
Representative Steve Thompson, Co-Chair                                                                                         
Representative Dan Saddler, Vice-Chair                                                                                          
Representative Bryce Edgmon                                                                                                     
Representative Les Gara                                                                                                         
Representative Lynn Gattis                                                                                                      
Representative David Guttenberg                                                                                                 
Representative Scott Kawasaki                                                                                                   
Representative Cathy Munoz                                                                                                      
Representative Lance Pruitt                                                                                                     
Representative Tammie Wilson                                                                                                    
MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                                                                
ALSO PRESENT                                                                                                                  
Representative Paul Seaton; Representative Sam Kito III                                                                         
PRESENT VIA TELECONFERENCE                                                                                                    
Bob Brodie, Self, Kodiak;  Patrick Reinhart, Alaska Mobility                                                                    
Coalition, Anchorage;  Rick Koch, City Manager,  Kenai; Mark                                                                    
Schaefer,  Municipality of  Skagway, Skagway;  Naomi Nelson,                                                                    
Mat-Su  Community Transit,  Wasilla;  Tom Begich,  Coalition                                                                    
for  Education   Equity,  Anchorage;  Paul   Kendall,  Self,                                                                    
Anchorage;  William  Reiner,  Self, Anchorage;  Gerry  Hope,                                                                    
Alaska  Mobility  Coalition,   Sitka;  Kyan  Reeve,  Borough                                                                    
Transit Director, Ketchikan;  George Smallwood, Self, Homer;                                                                    
Chris Turletes, University of Alaska, Anchorage.                                                                                
SB 138    BUDGET: CAPITAL                                                                                                       
          SB 138 was HEARD and HELD in committee for                                                                            
          further consideration.                                                                                                
6:07:34 PM                                                                                                                    
CS FOR SENATE BILL NO. 138(FIN)                                                                                               
     "An Act  making and amending  appropriations, including                                                                    
     capital  appropriations,  supplemental  appropriations,                                                                    
     reappropriations,  and   other  appropriations;  making                                                                    
     appropriations to  capitalize funds; and  providing for                                                                    
     an effective date."                                                                                                        
6:07:34 PM                                                                                                                    
^PUBLIC TESTIMONY                                                                                                             
Co-Chair  Thompson indicated  that  the  committee would  be                                                                    
hearing  public  testimony  which  would  be  limited  to  2                                                                    
minutes per  person. He also welcomed  written testimony and                                                                    
provided the email address where it could be sent.                                                                              
6:08:24 PM                                                                                                                    
BOB    BRODIE,    SELF,   KODIAK    (via    teleconference),                                                                    
encouraged  bonding for  some of  the  smaller projects.  He                                                                    
suggested  implementing a  personal income  tax. He  thought                                                                    
people  would begin  leaving the  state. He  thought it  was                                                                    
necessary  to increase  taxes rather  than  kicking the  can                                                                    
down the road. He thanked the committee.                                                                                        
6:10:10 PM                                                                                                                    
PATRICK REINHART, ALASKA  MOBILITY COALITION, ANCHORAGE (via                                                                    
teleconference), explained  that he  was also  the executive                                                                    
director of  the Governor's  Council on  Disabilities. Years                                                                    
ago the group started the  Alaska Mobility Coalition with an                                                                    
effort  to improve  transit services  across  the state  for                                                                    
people with disabilities. He spoke  in support the community                                                                    
match funding  that was in  the governor's  original budget.                                                                    
He understood  the funding  was removed  by the  Senate. The                                                                    
transportation match fund supported  a number of communities                                                                    
across  the state.  He listed  all of  the communities  that                                                                    
would  benefit  from  the  matching  program.  He  spoke  of                                                                    
federal transit funds that were  accessible in the amount of                                                                    
about  $3 million.  He thought  that  many smaller  services                                                                    
would fail without the support.  He thanked the committee.                                                                      
6:12:25 PM                                                                                                                    
RICK  KOCH,   CITY  MANAGER,  KENAI   (via  teleconference),                                                                    
thanked the  committee for  its hard work.  He spoke  to the                                                                    
reappropriation to the  City of Kenai in the  amount of $1.4                                                                    
million for  the Kenai  River Bluffs  Stabilization Project.                                                                    
The  reappropriation did  not change  the  scope but  simply                                                                    
extended  the  time period  by  which  the appropriation  be                                                                    
available  for the  project. He  explained that  the project                                                                    
totaled  about $40  million and  would help  prevent further                                                                    
erosion of  Old Town Kenai.  He provided further  details of                                                                    
the project. He thanked the committee for its time.                                                                             
6:15:03 PM                                                                                                                    
MARK  SCHAEFER,   MUNICIPALITY  OF  SKAGWAY,   SKAGWAY  (via                                                                    
teleconference), mentioned that  the conference committee on                                                                    
HB  256  [FY 17  Operating  Budget]  had failed  to  approve                                                                    
authorization  for  the  Department   of  Revenue  (DOR)  to                                                                    
disperse a commercial passenger tax  to the first 7 ports of                                                                    
call. He  encouraged members to  approve an amendment  to SB                                                                    
138  to  provide  such  authority.  He  provided  additional                                                                    
information about  the passenger  head tax and  talked about                                                                    
the  ramifications of  failing to  distribute the  funds. He                                                                    
thanked the committee.                                                                                                          
6:17:59 PM                                                                                                                    
NAOMI  NELSON,   MAT-SU  COMMUNITY  TRANSIT,   WASILLA  (via                                                                    
teleconference), encouraged  the committee  to support  a $1                                                                    
million allocation for public  and community state match. It                                                                    
allowed  and helped  the  organization  to leverage  federal                                                                    
funds.  She   opined  that   public  transportation   was  a                                                                    
wonderful  service and  provided a  solid positive  economic                                                                    
impact  on  the  state  and the  community  of  Mat-Su.  She                                                                    
thanked the committee.                                                                                                          
6:19:18 PM                                                                                                                    
TOM BEGICH,  COALITION FOR EDUCATION EQUITY,  ANCHORAGE (via                                                                    
teleconference),  mentioned  that   Alaska's  children  were                                                                    
responsible  for  bringing  forth the  successful  Kasayulie                                                                    
lawsuit. He  thanked members  for their  hard work.  He also                                                                    
thanked the  committee for removing  the intent  language in                                                                    
the House  Finance Committee  version. He  stressed Kivalina                                                                    
School funding was in the  governor's version of the capital                                                                    
budget, SB  138, and  was the last  of the  funding required                                                                    
under  the Kivalina  consent to  create  which followed  the                                                                    
successful  litigation of  the  Kivalina Lawsuit.  Including                                                                    
the intent  language in  the final version  of SB  138 could                                                                    
risk reopening  the litigation and returning  to square one.                                                                    
He  emphatically  encouraged  members  not  to  include  the                                                                    
intent  language  and  to include  the  governor's  original                                                                    
amount for  the Kivalina  School in  the current  version of                                                                    
the budget. It  was critical to finally resolve  the 16 year                                                                    
litigation. He thanked committee members for their time.                                                                        
6:21:18 PM                                                                                                                    
PAUL   KENDALL,   SELF,  ANCHORAGE   (via   teleconference),                                                                    
referred to the Constitution.  He read from the constitution                                                                    
in Article 1, Section 2.  He was critical of the legislature                                                                    
remaining in Juneau. He thought  members should move back to                                                                    
Anchorage and  finish their job. He  encouraged greater cuts                                                                    
to the  budget rather  than maintaining  the status  quo. He                                                                    
also   thought   legislators    should   reestablish   their                                                                    
priorities. He suggested that the  legislature let go of all                                                                    
state employees and start over.                                                                                                 
6:23:51 PM                                                                                                                    
WILLIAM REINER, SELF,  ANCHORAGE (via teleconference), spoke                                                                    
in opposition of  SB 138. He thought it was  over budget. He                                                                    
believed  that  many  of  the   expenses  should  have  been                                                                    
addressed and removed by senior  management. He believe that                                                                    
many capital projects  did not end up  benefiting the state.                                                                    
He spoke in  support of preserving the  Permanent Fund (PF).                                                                    
He talked  of the  benefits of the  PFD. He  appreciated the                                                                    
committee's hard work.                                                                                                          
6:26:42 PM                                                                                                                    
GERRY   HOPE,   ALASKA   MOBILITY  COALITION,   SITKA   (via                                                                    
teleconference),  thanked the  committee for  $1 million  in                                                                    
match dollars.  He expressed the  importance of  the service                                                                    
in Sitka. He really appreciated the committee's support.                                                                        
Co-Chair Thompson indicated  no one else was  online and the                                                                    
meeting would take a 10 min. break.                                                                                             
6:28:36 PM                                                                                                                    
AT EASE                                                                                                                         
6:42:05 PM                                                                                                                    
Co-Chair Thompson  relayed that there  was no one  online to                                                                    
testify. The committee would be taking a 15 minute at ease.                                                                     
6:42:29 PM                                                                                                                    
AT EASE                                                                                                                         
7:01:46 PM                                                                                                                    
Co-Chair Thompson indicated an additional testifier online.                                                                     
7:02:06 PM                                                                                                                    
KYAN  REEVE,   BOROUGH  TRANSIT  DIRECTOR,   KETCHIKAN  (via                                                                    
teleconference),  spoke in  support  of $1  million for  the                                                                    
state's match program  for transit. In the  current year the                                                                    
intent was  to purchase a  bus. He  made the point  that any                                                                    
dollar  left  in  the   program  typically  leveraged  other                                                                    
dollars. He thanked the committee.                                                                                              
Co-Chair Thompson reported that there  was no one online. He                                                                    
suggested that anyone  that was not available  to testify in                                                                    
person or  online could submit written  testimony. He stated                                                                    
that the  committee would  be taking  another at  ease until                                                                    
7:20 pm.                                                                                                                        
7:04:23 PM                                                                                                                    
AT EASE                                                                                                                         
7:21:11 PM                                                                                                                    
GEORGE  SMALLWOOD, SELF,  HOMER (via  teleconference), spoke                                                                    
in favor of occupying the  Atwood Building for the Anchorage                                                                    
Legislative  Information  Office.  He thought  the  finances                                                                    
were    too    tight    and    that    moving    into    the                                                                    
Atwood Building was the Legislature's best option.                                                                              
Co-Chair Thompson  indicated that the committee  would stand                                                                    
at ease until 7:30 pm.                                                                                                          
7:22:49 PM                                                                                                                    
AT EASE                                                                                                                         
7:28:54 PM                                                                                                                    
CHRIS  TURLETES,   UNIVERSITY  OF  ALASKA,   ANCHORAGE  (via                                                                    
teleconference), urged  support for the $10  million funding                                                                    
for deferred  maintenance for  the university.  He explained                                                                    
what  type  of  maintenance  would  be  conducted  with  the                                                                    
receipt  of   the  funds.  He   reviewed  the   benefits  of                                                                    
completing  the  deferred  maintenance. He  also  asked  for                                                                    
funding for  the completion of the  new engineering building                                                                    
which would make  it usable. He claimed  that the investment                                                                    
was  an  investment in  Alaska's  children.  He thanked  the                                                                    
committee for the opportunity to testify.                                                                                       
Co-Chair Thompson indicated there  was no one else available                                                                    
for public testimony.                                                                                                           
Co-Chair Thompson CLOSED public testimony.                                                                                      
SB  138  was  HEARD  and   HELD  in  committee  for  further                                                                    
Co-Chair Thompson  relayed that amendments for  SB 138 would                                                                    
be taken up  the following morning at 10:00  am. He remarked                                                                    
that  the committee  would  meet the  following  day on  the                                                                    
bill. The  meeting would  be at 10:00  a.m. The  meeting was                                                                    
recessed to  a call  of the chair  [Note: the  meeting never                                                                    
7:33:17 PM                                                                                                                    
ADJOURNMENT - Recessed to the Call of the Chair                                                                               
7:33:17 PM                                                                                                                    
The meeting was adjourned at 7:33 p.m.                                                                                          

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