Legislature(2019 - 2020)ADAMS ROOM 519

05/01/2019 05:00 PM FINANCE

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Audio Topic
05:00:13 PM Start
05:00:22 PM HB49
05:00:26 PM Public Tesimony
06:48:40 PM Adjourn
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
+ Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled TELECONFERENCED
Heard & Held
-- Public Testimony
<Bill Hearing Canceled>
-- Public Testimony <Time Limit 2 Minutes> --
                  HOUSE FINANCE COMMITTEE                                                                                       
                        May 1, 2019                                                                                             
                         5:00 p.m.                                                                                              
5:00:13 PM                                                                                                                    
CALL TO ORDER                                                                                                                 
Co-Chair Wilson  called the House Finance  Committee meeting                                                                    
to order at 5:00 p.m.                                                                                                           
MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                               
Representative Neal Foster, Co-Chair                                                                                            
Representative Tammie Wilson, Co-Chair                                                                                          
Representative Jennifer Johnston, Vice-Chair                                                                                    
Representative Dan Ortiz, Vice-Chair                                                                                            
Representative Ben Carpenter                                                                                                    
Representative Andy Josephson                                                                                                   
Representative Gary Knopp                                                                                                       
Representative Bart LeBon                                                                                                       
Representative Kelly Merrick                                                                                                    
Representative Colleen Sullivan-Leonard                                                                                         
Representative Cathy Tilton                                                                                                     
MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                                                                
ALSO PRESENT                                                                                                                  
Triada Stampas,  Policy Director, ACLU-Alaska;  Don Habeger,                                                                    
Community Coordinator Juneau Reentry Coalition, Juneau.                                                                         
PRESENT VIA TELECONFERENCE                                                                                                    
Will Madison, Self, Soldotna;  Jane Madison, Self, Soldotna;                                                                    
Sid   Atwood,    Self,   Anchorage;   Katie    Botz,   Self,                                                                    
Juneau/Minnesota;   Kara   Nelson,    Self,   Juneau;   Lars                                                                    
Gleitsmann, Self,  Anchorage; Tom McGrath,  Self, Anchorage;                                                                    
Kerry  Phillips,  Fairbanks  Reentry  Coalition,  Fairbanks;                                                                    
Maxine Doogan,  Community United for Safety  and Protection,                                                                    
Fairbanks;   Corin    Cooper,   Self,    Nikiski;   Kathleen                                                                    
McLaughlin,  Director,  Partner Reentry  Center,  Anchorage;                                                                    
Bert  Houghtaling, Self,  Big Lake;  Leann McCaughey,  Self,                                                                    
Nikiski;  Mary  Hilcoske,  Self, Anchorage;  Mike  Lightner,                                                                    
Self,  Anchorage;  Debbie   White,  Self,  Juneau;  Rhadella                                                                    
Divelbiss,  Self,  Big  Lake;   Mike  Coons,  Self,  Palmer;                                                                    
Henrietta Minium, Self, Nikiski;  Janet McCabe, Partners For                                                                    
Progress,  Anchorage; Kathy  Swanson,  Self, Juneau;  Evelyn                                                                    
Goughnour,  Self, Wasilla;  Phil Shanahan,  Self, Anchorage;                                                                    
Ida Nelson,  Self, Igiugig; Willie Keppel,  Self, Quinhagak;                                                                    
Patti  Williams,   Self,  Nikiski;  Elizabeth   Holt,  Self,                                                                    
Palmer;  Gail Limbaugh-Moore,  Self, Soldotna;  Joseph Ross,                                                                    
Self,   Nikiski;  Sarahann   Jackson,  Self,   Juneau;  Rose                                                                    
Hubbard,  Self, Anchorage;  Debra Holland,  Self, Anchorage;                                                                    
Chris Hayes,  Self, Kenai; Betty Best,  Self, Nikiski; Larry                                                                    
Best, Self,  Nikiski; Gary  McDonald, Self,  Anchorage; John                                                                    
Lamborn,  Self, Wasilla;  Caroline  Lamborn, Self,  Wasilla;                                                                    
Robert Wall, Self, Sterling.                                                                                                    
HB 49     CRIMES; SENTENCING;MENT. ILLNESS;EVIDENCE                                                                             
          HB 49 was HEARD and HELD in committee for further                                                                     
Co-Chair Wilson reviewed the agenda for the meeting.                                                                            
HOUSE BILL NO. 49                                                                                                             
     "An  Act  relating  to   criminal  law  and  procedure;                                                                    
     relating   to   controlled  substances;   relating   to                                                                    
     probation; relating to  sentencing; relating to reports                                                                    
     of  involuntary  commitment;  amending Rule  6,  Alaska                                                                    
     Rules  of  Criminal  Procedure; and  providing  for  an                                                                    
     effective date."                                                                                                           
5:00:22 PM                                                                                                                    
^PUBLIC TESIMONY                                                                                                              
5:00:26 PM                                                                                                                    
WILL   MADISON,   SELF,   SOLDOTNA   (via   teleconference),                                                                    
supported  increasing the  penalty for  a   revoked driver's                                                                    
license from a (Driving Under  the Influence) DUI offense to                                                                    
a misdemeanor  with  no  holds and  no bail.   He maintained                                                                    
that individuals caught driving  with a suspended or revoked                                                                    
driver's license only received  a citation. He believed that                                                                    
most  people driving  with a  revoked  license were  typical                                                                    
career criminals who  ignored orders to appear  in court. He                                                                    
opined that criminals  likely had stolen goods  and drugs in                                                                    
their  car and  the police  were  unable to  search the  car                                                                    
under  current law.  He reiterated  his  support for  making                                                                    
driving with  a revoked  license and arrestable  offense and                                                                    
to grant  the police  the tools necessary   to clean  up the                                                                    
habitual criminals.                                                                                                             
5:03:19 PM                                                                                                                    
JANE   MADISON,   SELF,   SOLDOTNA   (via   teleconference),                                                                    
supported the legislation. She  requested that the committee                                                                    
work on a speeding fine  issue and bail issues. She reported                                                                    
that  there was  a stretch  of  road where  people chose  to                                                                    
speed on the Seward  Highway between Girdwood and Anchorage.                                                                    
She shared that  a driver was caught speeding  135 miles per                                                                    
hour; 75 miles  per hour over the limit and  received a $3.6                                                                    
thousand dollar fine.  She deduced that the  penalty for the                                                                    
same  offense under  state law  would have  been $3  hundred                                                                    
plus  a $20  surcharge because  that was  the maximum  state                                                                    
speeding  charge. She  did  not believe  the   state  should                                                                    
limit fines for speeding and  thought that it would increase                                                                    
state revenues. She asked the  committee to consider how the                                                                    
Municipality of  Anchorage set its fines.  She advocated for                                                                    
the state  to retain the  bail money paid for  offenders who                                                                    
did  not  appear  for  their  court  dates.  She  asked  the                                                                    
committee  to  raise  the  deposit  amount  for  third-party                                                                    
custodians. She  indicated that third-party  custodians paid                                                                    
an  offender's  bail  and  watched   the  person  until  the                                                                    
offender returned  for their court appearance.  She believed                                                                    
that it was nearly impossible  to watch an accused person 24                                                                    
hours per  day and the  custodian  often allowed  the person                                                                    
to leave supervised custody. She  opined that under a charge                                                                    
called  violation of a  third-party custodial agreement  the                                                                    
custodian  could be  charged with  a  misdemeanor. She  felt                                                                    
that  the third-party  custodian  bail rate  should be  very                                                                    
large, and  she asked the legislature  to require forfeiture                                                                    
of the  deposit if the  offender failed to appear  in court.                                                                    
She  supported  larger  bail amounts  for  misdemeanors  and                                                                    
felonies  and reiterated  her plea  for bail  forfeiture for                                                                    
individuals who fail to appear in court.                                                                                        
5:08:11 PM                                                                                                                    
SID  ATWOOD, SELF,  ANCHORAGE  (via teleconference),  shared                                                                    
that he  was a member of  the Alaska Advisory Board  on Drug                                                                    
and Alcohol Abuse. He believed that  HB 49 was a better bill                                                                    
than  the  previous version.  However,  he  did not  support                                                                    
eliminating both  credit for  time served  and participation                                                                    
in  rehabilitative services  that  acted  as incentives  for                                                                    
change.  He  maintained  that change  gave  the  offender  a                                                                    
chance  to  reenter society.  He  believed  that penalty  or                                                                    
punishment  was  not correction  for  some  crimes and  that                                                                    
prison beds should be  prioritized for individuals convicted                                                                    
of serious  crimes. He  was thankful  for support  groups he                                                                    
had been  involved in  over the years  that help  others. He                                                                    
stated  that treatment  and support  and not  punishment had                                                                    
turned his life around 42 years ago.                                                                                            
5:10:24 PM                                                                                                                    
KATIE  BOTZ,  SELF, JUNEAU/MINNESOTA  (via  teleconference),                                                                    
had two  questions for  members to  consider. She  asked the                                                                    
members to  consider a person's  value and if the  value was                                                                    
less  valuable than  money. She  believed that  legislators                                                                     
 played with  peoples  lives  especially when  debating what                                                                    
to spend  and what to  cut.  She maintained that  Alaska was                                                                    
dangerous, and  no one could  deny it had not  been impacted                                                                    
by crime. She  urged the legislature to set  money aside for                                                                    
public  safety   and  impose   stiffer  penalties   to  keep                                                                    
offenders  off the  street.  She was  a  survivor of  sexual                                                                    
abuse. She  stressed that offenders  needed to be  held more                                                                    
accountable. She  shared that  she had  been adopted  at the                                                                    
age of  six months and  spoke against  killing  babies.  She                                                                    
implored  the legislature  to keep  criminals in  jail until                                                                    
they had proven they could participate in society.                                                                              
5:13:13 PM                                                                                                                    
KARA  NELSON, SELF,  JUNEAU (via  teleconference), spoke  in                                                                    
support of the bill, though  she felt she made a significant                                                                    
personal  compromise   to  do   so.  She  did   not  support                                                                    
increasing sentencing  ranges, but she understood  that some                                                                    
solutions  were  necessary.   She  believed  that  continual                                                                    
community  resources were  needed including  recovery homes,                                                                    
treatment centers, and other  community support. She related                                                                    
that  long incarceration  periods created   more chaos   and                                                                    
 ripped our communities apart.   She believed a solution was                                                                    
necessary. She  viewed the bill  as a compromise.  She asked                                                                    
the  legislature to  make smart  decisions. She  opined that                                                                    
there  were   a  myriad  of  devastating   things  happening                                                                    
statewide.  She  reiterated  that longer  sentencing  harmed                                                                    
communities  and  harmed  communities and  individuals.  She                                                                    
understood  accountability   was  necessary  and   could  be                                                                    
applied  smartly.  She stated  that punitive justice had not                                                                    
made citizens feel  safer. She wanted to  continue moving in                                                                    
the direction  of strategic reforms.  The problem  would not                                                                    
be solved by longer sentences.                                                                                                  
5:16:37 PM                                                                                                                    
LARS  GLEITSMANN,  SELF,   ANCHORAGE  (via  teleconference),                                                                    
shared that  he lived in  Alaska since 1996. He  was opposed                                                                    
to  the  prior  legislation,  SB   91  Omnibus  Crim  Law  &                                                                    
Procedure; Corrections [CHAPTER 36  SLA 16 - 07/11/2016]. He                                                                    
offered that SB  91 eroded the idea of  punitive justice and                                                                    
implementation created more crime.  He stated that criminals                                                                    
were laughing  at the  police and  victims. He  stated there                                                                    
had been  no positive change  - things were  only worsening.                                                                    
He  supported a  jail system  that  put people  in jail  for                                                                    
crimes  and  a  full  repeal  of SB  91.  He  supported  the                                                                    
governor's  version of  the bill  over  the House  Judiciary                                                                    
Committee version.  He stressed the high  increase in crime.                                                                    
Many property  crimes were not reported  because people felt                                                                    
reporting would do no good.  He shared that everyone he knew                                                                    
had been a  victim of a crime. He wondered  what happened to                                                                    
the  representation  of the  victim.  He  hoped for  a  full                                                                    
repeal of SB 91.                                                                                                                
5:20:10 PM                                                                                                                    
TOM  MCGRATH,  SELF,  ANCHORAGE  (via  teleconference),  was                                                                    
concerned that  third degree  property offenses  would still                                                                    
go without a serious penalty.  He believed that there was no                                                                    
consequence for a  person who had stolen less  than $250. He                                                                    
characterized  it as  a revolving  door. He  shared a  story                                                                    
about a recent situation  involving criminals with virtually                                                                    
no consequence for stealing items  under $250. He thought SB                                                                    
91 should be  repealed. He understood that some  parts of SB                                                                    
91 needed to remain, but  he thought those components should                                                                    
be   included  in   another  bill   due   to  its   negative                                                                    
connotations. He characterized the  current system as  catch                                                                    
and release.                                                                                                                    
5:22:06 PM                                                                                                                    
KERRY PHILLIPS, FAIRBANKS  REENTRY COALITION, FAIRBANKS (via                                                                    
teleconference),  spoke against  the bill.  She shared  that                                                                    
she was proof that  treatment over incarceration worked. She                                                                    
shared her  personal story with prescription  drug addiction                                                                    
and conviction  for prescription  fraud. She had  been given                                                                    
treatment and had checked in  with a district attorney daily                                                                    
for  one  year. She  currently  worked  as a  forensic  peer                                                                    
support  specialist   to  help  other   inmates  reintegrate                                                                    
successfully  into the  community.  She  believed that  drug                                                                    
possession offenses should  be dealt with on a  case by case                                                                    
basis  and offenders  should be  offered other  choices like                                                                    
therapeutic court  and treatment rather  than incarceration.                                                                    
She noted that some believed  that addicts should be left in                                                                    
jail and receive treatment there,  but treatment was sparse,                                                                    
and  inmates could  still obtain  drugs while  incarcerated.                                                                    
She shared that  she received a degree  in criminal justice.                                                                    
She  furthered  that  she  had  successfully  completed  her                                                                    
felony  probation  requirement  and favored  incentives  for                                                                    
good  behavior. She  indicated that  since the  inception of                                                                    
the reentry coalition the recidivism  rate was reduced to 20                                                                    
percent.   She  was   living  proof   that  treatment   over                                                                    
incarceration worked.                                                                                                           
5:24:38 PM                                                                                                                    
MAXINE DOOGAN,  COMMUNITY UNITED FOR SAFETY  AND PROTECTION,                                                                    
FAIRBANKS  (via  teleconference),   opposed  the  bill.  She                                                                    
associated  with  the  comments  made by  Kara  Nelson.  She                                                                    
opposed higher  fines and fees and  criminalization for drug                                                                    
possession.  She related  that  the  federal government  had                                                                    
seized  the  California  prison  system  because  California                                                                    
could not provide services  for the incarcerated population.                                                                    
She did  not want  to spend more  on prisons  than education                                                                    
like the state of California had done.                                                                                          
5:25:28 PM                                                                                                                    
CORIN COOPER,  SELF, NIKISKI  (via teleconference),  did not                                                                    
support HB  49. He  supported the other  crime bills  by the                                                                    
5:25:52 PM                                                                                                                    
KATHLEEN  MCLAUGHLIN,  DIRECTOR,   PARTNER  REENTRY  CENTER,                                                                    
ANCHORAGE  (via   teleconference),  addressed  the   key  to                                                                    
successful  reentry  into  society. She  detailed  that  the                                                                    
center had served 7,500 reentrants  since its inception. She                                                                    
had  learned  that  pre-release  planning  was  the  key  to                                                                    
successful reentry  into society. She relayed  Department of                                                                    
Corrections  (DOC)  statistics  that since  2016  recidivism                                                                    
rates had declined  from 67 percent to 61  percent. The goal                                                                    
was to  prepare inmates  for a  purposeful and  normal life.                                                                    
She indicated  that the  reentry partners  regularly visited                                                                    
the prison  intuitions in the  Anchorage area.  She reported                                                                    
that HB 49 assured that  DOC and the community based reentry                                                                    
advisors   would  stay   accountable  through   an  offender                                                                    
management  plan. She  had learned  that Alaska  was at  the                                                                    
forefront in the area of reentry.                                                                                               
5:28:03 PM                                                                                                                    
AT EASE                                                                                                                         
5:29:39 PM                                                                                                                    
TRIADA  STAMPAS,  POLICY  DIRECTOR,  ACLU-ALASKA,  spoke  in                                                                    
support  of  the  bill  over  the  governor's  version.  She                                                                    
pointed  to provisions  that  the  American Civil  Liberties                                                                    
Union  (ACLU)  specifically  supported  like  mandating  the                                                                    
timely processing  of sexual assault kits;  the coordination                                                                    
that  was  mandated between  DOC  and  reentry providers  in                                                                    
drafting   offender  management   plans;  reinstatement   of                                                                    
revoked drivers license  within 10 years of  a clean record;                                                                    
and  enhanced  reporting  by the  criminal  justice  system.                                                                    
However,  some provisions  in the  bill raised  concerns and                                                                    
were contrary to the principles  and evidence upon which the                                                                    
2016   justice  reform   was  based   on.  She   listed  the                                                                    
unfavorable provisions.  She indicated that HB  49 increased                                                                    
sentencing   ranges  for   a  range   of   crimes  and   was                                                                    
antithetical  to reform  principles that  established longer                                                                    
sentences   contributed   to    recidivism.   The   proposed                                                                    
elimination of inflation indexing  for property crimes would                                                                    
result  in  longer  lengths   of  incarceration.  The  third                                                                    
conviction  for  drug  possession  for Schedule  1A  and  2A                                                                    
crimes  increasing to  a felony  offense  was troubling  and                                                                    
meant that  individuals with  substance use  disorders would                                                                    
end  up with  a felony  penalty and  a criminal  record. She                                                                    
believed   that the state  had a range of  alternatives that                                                                    
were  more effective  solutions.  She heard  earlier in  the                                                                    
hearing that  the problems were  complex, and she  asked the                                                                    
committee  to choose  a range  of  alternatives rather  than                                                                    
methods that were proven ineffective.                                                                                           
5:34:25 PM                                                                                                                    
Representative  Sullivan-Leonard asked  what the  evidential                                                                    
data she had  referred to was. Ms. Stampas  replied that the                                                                    
United  States  (US)  Department of  Justice  had  performed                                                                    
extensive  analysis  of  academic  research  regarding  what                                                                    
deterred  crime. She  related that  the research  found that                                                                    
the length  of a sentence was  less of a deterrent  than the                                                                    
certainty that  an offender would be  caught. Increasing the                                                                    
perception  that a  criminal would  get caught  acted as  an                                                                    
effective deterrent.                                                                                                            
Representative  Knopp asked  whether  a correlation  existed                                                                    
between too short a period  of incarceration and recidivism.                                                                    
Ms. Stampas  answered that she  was unaware of  any evidence                                                                    
that supported the premise.                                                                                                     
5:35:07 PM                                                                                                                    
DON   HABEGER,   COMMUNITY   COORDINATOR,   JUNEAU   REENTRY                                                                    
COALITION,  JUNEAU, explained  the  mission  of the  reentry                                                                    
coalition.  He  voiced  that  the  mission  was  to  promote                                                                    
community  safety   through  identifying   and  implementing                                                                    
strategies that  increased reentrants success  after release                                                                    
from  incarceration.  The  coalition recognized  that  smart                                                                    
justice  was a  balance  of  accountability and  appropriate                                                                    
sanctions  and  needed  to include  services  and  treatment                                                                    
options to assist in successfully  returning the offender to                                                                    
the community  and ensuring public safety.  He believed that                                                                    
HB 49 struck an  appropriate balance between enforcement and                                                                    
a pathway  for recovery  and success in  returning offenders                                                                    
to the community.                                                                                                               
5:36:53 PM                                                                                                                    
AT EASE                                                                                                                         
5:48:08 PM                                                                                                                    
Co-Chair  Wilson  noted  there  had  been  phone  connection                                                                    
5:48:32 PM                                                                                                                    
BERT HOUGHTALING,  SELF, BIG LAKE (via  teleconference), did                                                                    
not support  the current  version of  the bill.  He believed                                                                    
that another  bill, HB 145  - Property Crime;  Motor Vehicle                                                                    
Theft  Tools,  was  inserted  into   HB  49.  He  asked  the                                                                    
committee to pass  the governor's original version  of HB 49                                                                    
along with his  other crime bills. He  opined that inserting                                                                    
the provisions of HB 145 into HB 49 was disingenuous.                                                                           
5:50:27 PM                                                                                                                    
LEANN MCCAUGHEY,  SELF, NIKISKI (via  teleconference), spoke                                                                    
against  HB 49  and  asked the  legislature  to support  the                                                                    
governor's legislation  and  restore  the rule of  law.  She                                                                    
agreed  with the  governors  top  priority to  ensure public                                                                    
5:51:22 PM                                                                                                                    
MARY HILCOSKE, SELF,  ANCHORAGE (via teleconference), shared                                                                    
that  she  was Vice-Chair  of  the  board of  the  voluntary                                                                    
organization, Partners  for Progress.  She related  that the                                                                    
organizations   purpose was  to fight  crime. She  supported                                                                    
the House Judiciary version of HB 49.                                                                                           
5:52:04 PM                                                                                                                    
MIKE  LIGHTNER, SELF,  ANCHORAGE  (via teleconference),  did                                                                    
not support HB 49. He reported  that since the passage of SB                                                                    
91, crime  had increased in his  neighborhood. He considered                                                                    
the bill a  failure. He requested that  the legislature lead                                                                    
the  state into  a  new direction  and  pass the  governors                                                                     
suite of crime legislation.                                                                                                     
5:52:56 PM                                                                                                                    
AT EASE                                                                                                                         
6:00:19 PM                                                                                                                    
DEBBIE WHITE, SELF,  JUNEAU (via teleconference), understood                                                                    
and respected  the value of  reentry programs,  but believed                                                                    
that the core  function of government was  the protection of                                                                    
its citizens. She  believed SB 91 had tied the  hands of the                                                                    
public safety system.  She felt that public  safety was left                                                                    
up to the citizenry, which  possessed many firearms. She was                                                                    
shocked   that   the   governor's  four   bills   had   been                                                                    
"mutilated." She  asked the committee to  reject the current                                                                    
version of the bill.                                                                                                            
6:02:13 PM                                                                                                                    
RHADELLA  DIVELBISS, SELF,  BIG  LAKE (via  teleconference),                                                                    
supported  the  governor's bill.  She  wanted  SB 91  to  be                                                                    
repealed. She stated that everyone  had to pay for what they                                                                    
chose to  do - there  were consequences to actions.  She did                                                                    
not support the current version of the bill.                                                                                    
Co-Chair Wilson asked individuals to  call back if there was                                                                    
a problem.                                                                                                                      
6:03:25 PM                                                                                                                    
MIKE  COONS,  SELF,  PALMER (via  teleconference),  did  not                                                                    
support the  House Judiciary Committee version  of the bill.                                                                    
He  supported the  governor's bill.  He thought  the current                                                                    
version of the  bill was  disgusting.  He  stressed that the                                                                    
governor's bills  needed to be  passed. He related  that the                                                                    
governor had stated he would  veto the bill. He would prefer                                                                    
another  year of  SB 91  compared  to the  current bill.  He                                                                    
thought that the legislature was  putting Alaskans in harm's                                                                    
way.  He stressed  that  people were  in  jail because  they                                                                    
committed a crime.  He did not support going  easy on repeat                                                                    
offenders.  He asked  the committee  to pass  the governor's                                                                    
6:07:12 PM                                                                                                                    
HENRIETTA MINIUM, SELF, NIKISKI  (via teleconference), was a                                                                    
victim of  property crime  on the  Peninsula. She  urged the                                                                    
committee not  to pass the  current version of the  bill and                                                                    
pass the governor's crime bills.                                                                                                
6:08:12 PM                                                                                                                    
JANET   MCCABE,  PARTNERS   FOR  PROGRESS,   ANCHORAGE  (via                                                                    
teleconference),  supported the  current version  of HB  49.                                                                    
She  indicated that  her organization  supported therapeutic                                                                    
courts and reentry entities. She  believed that the bill was                                                                    
a more balanced approach and  was the result of careful work                                                                    
on SB 91. The bill improved  the weak parts. She believed HB                                                                    
49 did  a better  job addressing  the most  dangerous drugs.                                                                    
The  bill   strengthened  the  electronic   monitoring  (EM)                                                                    
program  and   addressed  real  threats  of   violence.  She                                                                    
reported  that reentry  work  solved  problems, reduced  the                                                                    
cost  of   incarceration  and  protected  the   public.  She                                                                    
believed the  bill was smart  on crime and not  merely tough                                                                    
on crime. She implored the committee to pass the bill.                                                                          
6:10:21 PM                                                                                                                    
KATHY SWANSON, SELF, JUNEAU  (via teleconference), urged the                                                                    
committee to vote  against the bill and  pass the governor's                                                                    
crime bills. She would be happy  to see a complete repeal of                                                                    
SB  91 and  then replace  some  of its  elements in  another                                                                    
bill. She wondered where the  reentry program was in Juneau.                                                                    
She  was  in  favor  of  Haven  House  and  had  financially                                                                    
supported   it.   She   supported  reentry   programs   that                                                                    
rehabilitated prisoners  and thought the bill  discarded the                                                                    
reentry programs. She  was fine with people  in jail earning                                                                    
their way  into treatment or rehabilitation.  She noted that                                                                    
the programs  were not readily  available and had up  to one                                                                    
year's  wait time.  She was  tired of  getting "flipped  the                                                                    
bird"  by  the  guy  who  had  burglarized  her  house.  She                                                                    
stressed  that there  were many  stolen firearms  in Alaska.                                                                    
She related that there was a  man at the playground that day                                                                    
with  a knife.  She underscored  that the  individual needed                                                                    
mental health  help. She  emphasized that  the bill  did not                                                                    
represent  compassion  yet  also   let  criminals  and  drug                                                                    
addicts go  without treatment or rehabilitation.  She stated                                                                    
it was a matter of time before a tragedy happened.                                                                              
6:13:50 PM                                                                                                                    
EVELYN GOUGHNOUR, SELF,  WASILLA (via teleconference), spoke                                                                    
in support of  a repeal of SB 91. She  shared that neighbors                                                                    
had  been burglarized,  gas was  siphoned out  of cars,  and                                                                    
mailboxes were  rifled. The residents knew  who the culprits                                                                    
were, but  nothing had been  done. She shared that  she grew                                                                    
up in Alaska and  had never seen the crime as  bad as it was                                                                    
at present.  She was  upset by the  number of  criminals and                                                                    
amount of  crime. She  urged the committee  to reject  HB 49                                                                    
because it  was inadequate.  She wanted  a bill  that worked                                                                    
and asked  the legislature  to quit tying  the hands  of the                                                                    
6:16:48 PM                                                                                                                    
PHIL   SHANAHAN,  SELF,   ANCHORAGE  (via   teleconference),                                                                    
testified in support  of the bill. He  voiced that antidotal                                                                    
evidence  was  not  real  evidence.  He  believed  that  the                                                                    
Criminal  Justice  Commission  had  put a  lot  of  thought,                                                                    
analysis,  and  research  in criminal  justice  reform.  The                                                                    
reforms  were  beginning  to  work,   and  he  advised  that                                                                    
patience  was necessary.  He pointed  out that  rolling back                                                                    
reforms would cost the state  millions of dollars. He stated                                                                    
that crime had  not begun because of SB 91  and the bill did                                                                    
not intend  for an  end to  incarceration. He  stressed that                                                                    
treatment was  the answer to  the problem. He  observed that                                                                    
SB  91 did  not create  the  problem people  were seeing  in                                                                    
their communities  and the statistics  did not  support that                                                                    
crime was skyrocketing.  He noted that the old  way of doing                                                                    
things  did  not work  and  crime  was  a problem  prior  to                                                                    
passage  of SB  91. The  cost  of incarceration  was out  of                                                                    
control and  the recidivism rate  was very high. He  did not                                                                    
support sending individuals to prisons  out of state. He was                                                                    
supportive of  fixing the  problems with SB  91 but  did not                                                                    
favor  scaping justice reform.   He thought the current bill                                                                    
was a  measured and  evidence-based approach even  though he                                                                    
did not endorse all provisions in the bill.                                                                                     
6:19:50 PM                                                                                                                    
IDA  NELSON,  SELF,   IGIUGIG  (via  teleconference),  spoke                                                                    
against HB 49 and believed  it caused  more harm than good.                                                                     
She had counted   19 amendments  in the bill  and thought it                                                                    
was a  band aid  approach  that  would get ripped off in the                                                                    
future.    She  believed   that   the   many  changes   were                                                                    
unnecessary and were  only in place to  create an appearance                                                                    
of public safety. Many improvements  were needed in the bill                                                                    
along  with awareness  of  the  consequences. She  suggested                                                                    
breaking the  bill down into  smaller bills.  She reiterated                                                                    
her disapproval of the bill and thanked the committee.                                                                          
6:21:32 PM                                                                                                                    
WILLIE KEPPEL,  SELF, QUINHAGAK (via  teleconference), spoke                                                                    
against HB  49. He reported  that people were  sleeping with                                                                    
loaded  guns  as  protection against  perpetrators.  Thieves                                                                    
were  stealing   snow  machines   and  four   wheelers  with                                                                    
impunity, and  the culprits were  well known.  He emphasized                                                                    
that  the use  of snow  machines to  maintain a  subsistence                                                                    
lifestyle was  a necessity. He  spoke of the  revolving door                                                                    
of thieves back  out on the street after one  night in jail.                                                                    
He supported  the governor's four  proposed crime  bills. He                                                                    
noted  the  recurrence of  a  heroin  epidemic and  believed                                                                    
nothing will  cure  it. He  favored locking up all criminals                                                                    
and drug users.                                                                                                                 
6:23:17 PM                                                                                                                    
PATTI  WILLIAMS, SELF,  NIKISKI (via  teleconference), spoke                                                                    
against  HB 49  and urged  support for  the governor's  four                                                                    
crime bills.                                                                                                                    
6:23:35 PM                                                                                                                    
ELIZABETH  HOLT, SELF,  PALMER  (via teleconference),  spoke                                                                    
against   HB   49  that   was   essentially   HB  145.   She                                                                    
characterized  the bill  as  a  watered down  version of  SB                                                                    
91.  She urged  support for the governor's  crime bills. She                                                                    
believed that  the provisions  in HB 145  was similar  to SB                                                                    
91.  She suggested  that passing  the bill  would complicate                                                                    
matters and urged support of the governors crime bills.                                                                         
6:25:10 PM                                                                                                                    
GAIL  LIMBAUGH-MOORE, SELF,  SOLDOTNA (via  teleconference),                                                                    
did  not  support the  bill.  She  supported the  governor's                                                                    
bills.  She was  tired of  crime in  the state.  She worried                                                                    
about  her elderly  parents when  she  had to  take them  to                                                                    
Anchorage for  medical care.  She did  not know  how patient                                                                    
the legislature  wanted the  public to  be when  waiting for                                                                    
the elements of SB 91 to  work. She stressed that Alaska did                                                                    
not seem safe. She was  traveling to Anchorage the following                                                                    
week and she asked someone  to accompany her because she was                                                                    
fearful of homeless  individuals. She characterized criminal                                                                    
justice  reform  as a   hug-a-thug   solution  that was  not                                                                    
working. She wanted to see SB 91 repealed.                                                                                      
6:27:32 PM                                                                                                                    
JOSEPH  ROSS,  SELF,  NIKISKI (via  teleconference),  stated                                                                    
that the property crime had  gotten out of hand. He detailed                                                                    
that the  same perpetrators  were repeating the  crimes over                                                                    
and over  and nothing happened  to them. He did  not support                                                                    
HB 49.  He supported  all four of  the governor's  bills. He                                                                    
did not  care about costs or  if the state had  to build one                                                                    
to three  more prisons. He  did not care if  individuals had                                                                    
to be sent out of state.  He urged passage of the governors                                                                     
crime package.                                                                                                                  
6:28:57 PM                                                                                                                    
SARAHANN JACKSON, SELF,  JUNEAU (via teleconference), stated                                                                    
that  SB  91  had  not  been one  simple  bill,  but  was  a                                                                    
conglomeration  of  ideas  taken   from  other  states.  She                                                                    
continued that SB 54 had not  fixed the problems with SB 91.                                                                    
She underscored that  her home had been  violated twice. She                                                                    
had installed  surveillance cameras. She wanted  to know why                                                                    
the state was  not paying for the cameras  because crime was                                                                    
making residents the  prey. She spoke of  the revolving door                                                                    
that  kept releasing  the criminals  back onto  the streets.                                                                    
She shared various  stories about crime at her  house and of                                                                    
individuals that  had broken  into her  car. She  noted that                                                                    
one of the individuals was  still free. She questioned where                                                                    
her justice  was. She thought  it was  crazy that SB  91 was                                                                    
passed by the  legislators and citizens had  to tolerate the                                                                    
consequences.  She was  strongly  opposed to  the bill.  She                                                                    
stressed  that citizens  had been  hurt by  SB 91.  She read                                                                    
information  listing the  programs  offered  at Lemon  Creek                                                                    
Correctional  Center and  was  appalled.  She spoke  against                                                                    
prison programs.                                                                                                                
6:33:48 PM                                                                                                                    
ROSE  HUBBARD, SELF,  ANCHORAGE (via  teleconference), spoke                                                                    
against  the  bill.   She  did  not  feel   the  crime  bill                                                                    
discussion  was  balanced. She  stressed  that  crime was  a                                                                    
touchy subject  that affected everyone.  She was  a reformed                                                                    
drug addict and was a  positive influence in working towards                                                                    
helping create  a productive community. She  did not believe                                                                    
in  short-term   sentences  for  habitual   offenders,  drug                                                                    
traffickers, sexual  abuse perpetrators, or  sex traffickers                                                                    
should get  a break. However,  she had compassion  for those                                                                    
that   rehabilitate  and   recover.   She  participated   in                                                                    
treatment when  she was  ready, which  she believed  was the                                                                    
only way recovery worked. She  thought that treatment should                                                                    
be provided  in jail.  She believed that  habitual offenders                                                                    
should be  locked away for  longer periods of time.  She did                                                                    
not  think the  state should  throw away  the key  when they                                                                    
incarcerated a young person with  no prior offenses. She did                                                                    
not believe  the bill fixed  the problem, but she  thought a                                                                    
real solution involved all parties dedicated to a solution.                                                                     
6:37:48 PM                                                                                                                    
DEBRA   HOLLAND,  SELF,   ANCHORAGE  (via   teleconference),                                                                    
testified  in support  of the  governor's crimes  bills. She                                                                    
did not support  HB 49 and thought it was  a diluted version                                                                    
of SB 91. She stressed that crime needed to be stopped.                                                                         
6:38:34 PM                                                                                                                    
CHRIS  HAYES,   SELF,  KENAI  (via   teleconference),  spoke                                                                    
against HB 49. He was supportive  of a full repeal of SB 91.                                                                    
He had  never seen  crime any  worse than it  had been  - he                                                                    
referenced "opioid  zombies" that were disturbing  the peace                                                                    
and  committing crimes  in his  community. He  believed that                                                                    
all the crime  was due to financing drug  addiction. He went                                                                    
to  the Kenai  Police Department  once  a month  or more  to                                                                    
report  crimes.  He  noted  that  the  police  had  a  quick                                                                    
response time.  He relayed that  the officers  wanted people                                                                    
to call to  report offenses, but the officers  felt that the                                                                    
problem was  the catch and  release system created  under SB                                                                    
6:40:59 PM                                                                                                                    
BETTY  BEST,  SELF,   NIKISKI  (via  teleconference),  spoke                                                                    
against HB 49  and supported a repeal of SB  91. She thought                                                                    
it was time for punishment to fit the crime.                                                                                    
6:41:42 PM                                                                                                                    
LARRY  BEST,  SELF,  NIKISKI (via  teleconference),  was  in                                                                    
favor  of the  governor's  crime bills.  He  opposed SB  91,                                                                    
which he believed had been non-effective.                                                                                       
6:42:28 PM                                                                                                                    
GARY   MCDONALD,  SELF,   ANCHORAGE  (via   teleconference),                                                                    
emphasized  the high  crime rate  in the  state. He  thought                                                                    
1,000 prisoners needed to be  sent to Arizona to save money.                                                                    
He  did  not  support  offering any  programs  in  jail.  He                                                                    
stressed that people  were very upset. He  could not believe                                                                    
the amount of crime. He did  not support HB 49. He supported                                                                    
the governor's four crime bills.                                                                                                
6:43:47 PM                                                                                                                    
JOHN LAMBORN, SELF, WASILLA  (via teleconference), felt that                                                                    
SB 91  should have been  repealed already. He  supported the                                                                    
governor's  bills. He  voiced that  the legislature  had not                                                                    
done anything  the governor had  proposed. He  supported the                                                                    
governors agenda.                                                                                                               
6:44:41 PM                                                                                                                    
CAROLINE  LAMBORN, SELF,  WASILLA (via  teleconference), was                                                                    
opposed to  HB 49. She  supported the governor's  bills. She                                                                    
spoke about the  high crime rate in her  district and listed                                                                    
her  experiences  with  criminal activity.  She  noted  that                                                                    
officers  had  to  let  criminals  go  due  to  SB  91.  She                                                                    
highlighted that offenders who had  been caught had pages of                                                                    
prior offenses  - she did not  know why they were  not going                                                                    
to jail.  She was  tired of being  scared. She  implored the                                                                    
legislature to  do something about crime.  She supported the                                                                    
governor's agenda.                                                                                                              
6:46:08 PM                                                                                                                    
ROBERT WALL, SELF, STERLING (via teleconference), did not                                                                       
support HB 49. He thought that the legislature needed to go                                                                     
back to the governor's original bill.                                                                                           
Co-Chair Wilson noted that individuals could send testimony                                                                     
in. She CLOSED public testimony.                                                                                                
HB 49 was HEARD and HELD in committee for further                                                                               
6:48:40 PM                                                                                                                    
The meeting was adjourned at 6:48 p.m.                                                                                          

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
HB 49 Public Testimony pkt.pdf HFIN 5/1/2019 5:00:00 PM
HB 49