Legislature(2019 - 2020)ADAMS 519

03/12/2020 01:30 PM FINANCE

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Audio Topic
01:34:20 PM Start
01:35:02 PM HB300 || HB306
01:36:45 PM Public Testimony
07:07:35 PM Adjourn
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
+= HB 300 PERM FUND: APPROPS FR EARNINGS RESERVE TELECONFERENCED
Heard & Held
-- Public Testimony <Time Limit 2 Minutes> --
+= HB 306 PFD/GF APPROPS; EARNINGS RESERVE TELECONFERENCED
Heard & Held
-- Public Testimony <Time Limit 2 Minutes> --
- Please sign in at your LIO or call in by
3:00 pm or testimony may break and reconvene at
5:00 pm; After the recess sign in or call in by
7:00 pm.
+ Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled TELECONFERENCED
This meeting will recess at 3:30 pm until 5:00 pm
                  HOUSE FINANCE COMMITTEE                                                                                       
                      March 12, 2020                                                                                            
                         1:34 p.m.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
1:34:20 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CALL TO ORDER                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Johnston   called  the  House   Finance  Committee                                                                    
meeting to order at 1:34 p.m.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Representative Neal Foster, Co-Chair                                                                                            
Representative Jennifer Johnston, Co-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                                                                                                     
Representative Adam Wool                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
None                                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
ALSO PRESENT                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Nils  Andreassen,   Executive  Director,   Alaska  Municipal                                                                    
League, Juneau;  John S. Sonin, Civilized  Humanity, Juneau;                                                                    
Mike   Hamar,   Self,   Juneau;  Valerie   Therrien,   Self,                                                                    
Fairbanks; June  Rogers, Self,  Juneau; Richard  Ware, Self,                                                                    
Tok; Representative Laddie Shaw.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
PRESENT VIA TELECONFERENCE                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Vikki  Jo Kennedy,  Self,  Juneau;  Jomo Stewart,  Fairbanks                                                                    
Economic  Development  Corporation, Fairbanks;  Sue  Sherif,                                                                    
Self, Fairbanks;  Jeanine St. John, Vice  President, Lynden,                                                                    
Anchorage;  Cris  Eichenlaub,  Self,  Eagle  River;  Rebecca                                                                    
Crelley,  Self,  Anchorage;  Joan Ware,  Self,  Tok;  Carrie                                                                    
Harris,  Self, Anchorage;  Alan Davis,  Self, Anchor  Point;                                                                    
Don Gray,  Self, Fairbanks; Calvin  Casipit, Mayor,  City of                                                                    
Gustavus,  Anchor Point;  Mike  Coons,  Self, Palmer;  Susan                                                                    
Shuler,  Self,  Seward;  Darrel  Smith,  Self,  Juneau;  Lee                                                                    
Leschper, Self, Anchorage;  Mary Cornelius, Self, Fairbanks;                                                                    
Bert  Houghtalind, Self,  Big  Lake;  Catherine Selt,  Self,                                                                    
Kenai;  Mike Gillis,  Self, Big  Lake;  Kristen Bush,  Self,                                                                    
Eagle    River;   John    Alich,   Self,    Salcha;   Robert                                                                    
Heatherington,  Self,   Anchorage;  Joanie   Bernier,  Self,                                                                    
Wasilla;  LD   Howard,  Self,   Palmer;  Javen   Ose,  Self,                                                                    
Anchorage;  Walter Tellman,  Self, Wasilla;  Dean Kasischke,                                                                    
Self,  Seward;   Eugene  Virden,  Self,  Eagle   River;  Ron                                                                    
Johnson,   Self,  Fairbanks;   Vivia  Kuzmin,   Self,  Delta                                                                    
Junction; Bruce  Barcus, Self,  Palmer; Dave  Maxwell, Self,                                                                    
Palmer;  Richard  Wagner,  Self, Fairbanks;  Pencia  Beaton,                                                                    
Self, Anchorage; Afia Kuzman,  Self, Delta Junction; Virinia                                                                    
Kuzmin,  Self,  Delta   Junction;  Michelle  LeBlanc,  Self,                                                                    
Anchorage;  Don  Stevens,  Self,  Fairbanks;  Yunia  Kuzmin,                                                                    
Self,  Delta  Junction;  Frank  Bauer,  Self,  Homer;  Karen                                                                    
Perry,   Self,  Chugiak;   Siverian   Kuzmin,  Self,   Delta                                                                    
Junction;   Melissa   Gudobba,   Self,   Wasilla;   Jonathan                                                                    
Gordaoff,  Self,  Wasilla;  Trish Wagner  Mikolajczk,  Self,                                                                    
Fairbanks;  Barbara  Melland,  Self, Wasilla;  Ron  Bernier,                                                                    
Self, Meadow  Lakes; Sarahann  Jackson, Self,  Juneau; David                                                                    
Nees,  Self, Anchorage;  Greg  Weaver,  Self, Wasilla;  Neil                                                                    
Kuzmin, Self,  Deltana; Kurt Schmidt, Self,  Delta Junction;                                                                    
Sherry  Eichenlaub, Self,  Eagle River;  Sterling Gallaghar,                                                                    
Self,  Anchorage; Alexandra  Kuzmin,  Self, Delta  Junction;                                                                    
Jenna Stevens, Self, Stevens  Village; Linda Tremback, Self,                                                                    
North Pole.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
SUMMARY                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
HB 300    PERM FUND: APPROPS FR EARNINGS RESERVE                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
          HB 300 was HEARD and HELD in committee for                                                                            
          further consideration.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
HB 306    PFD/GF APPROPS; EARNINGS RESERVE                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
          HB 306 was HEARD and HELD in committee for                                                                            
          further consideration.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Johnston reviewed the meeting agenda.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 300                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     "An  Act relating  to deposits  into the  dividend fund                                                                    
     and  income of  and  appropriations  from the  earnings                                                                    
     reserve account;  relating to the  community assistance                                                                    
     program; and providing for an effective date."                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 306                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     "An  Act relating  to deposits  into the  dividend fund                                                                    
     and  income of  and  appropriations  from the  earnings                                                                    
     reserve   account;   establishing  a   permanent   fund                                                                    
     dividend  task force;  and providing  for an  effective                                                                    
     date."                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
1:35:02 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Johnston acknowledged  Representative Laddie  Shaw                                                                    
in  the   audience.  She   reviewed  the   public  testimony                                                                    
protocol.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
^PUBLIC TESTIMONY                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
1:36:45 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Johnston  OPENED public  testimony. She  began with                                                                    
in-room testifiers.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
1:37:13 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
VIKKI  JO   KENNEDY,  SELF,  JUNEAU   (via  teleconference),                                                                    
believed the issue  could be solved easily if it  was put to                                                                    
a   vote  of   the  people   as  specified   by  the   state                                                                    
constitution.  She testified  that the  law had  been broken                                                                    
for four  years. She stressed that  the statutory [Permanent                                                                    
Fund  Dividend (PFD)]  amount was  not  being allotted.  She                                                                    
understood the state was in  a financial crisis, but she did                                                                    
not  believe   that  warranted  breaking  the   law  by  not                                                                    
following  statute.   She  supported  a  full   PFD  at  the                                                                    
statutory  amount. She  implored the  committee to  consider                                                                    
putting the issue  to a vote of the people.  She thanked the                                                                    
committee for its time.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
1:39:08 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
NILS  ANDREASSEN,   EXECUTIVE  DIRECTOR,   ALASKA  MUNICIPAL                                                                    
LEAGUE,   JUNEAU,  discussed   there  had   been  tremendous                                                                    
pushback on  reductions to the  budget in the  previous year                                                                    
in the absence  of sufficient and new  revenues. He reported                                                                    
that AML  had supported fewer  cuts and anything  that could                                                                    
be done  to mitigate negative impacts  to local governments,                                                                    
which  the  legislature had  determined  would  come at  the                                                                    
expense  of  a reduced  PFD  as  the  most feasible  way  to                                                                    
mitigate  impacts.  The  organization had  advocated  for  a                                                                    
broad-based  tax since  2015.  The organization  appreciated                                                                    
the committee's consideration of  the bills as the beginning                                                                    
of a conversation about next  steps involving a distribution                                                                    
or split  within the  percent of  market value  (POMV) [from                                                                    
the Permanent  Fund Earnings  Reserve Account],  including a                                                                    
reduction  to the  PFD. He  recognized the  conversation was                                                                    
increasingly  necessary, but  AML believed  the conversation                                                                    
only  made sense  when  combined with  a  discussion on  new                                                                    
revenue sources.  He elaborated  that the  conversation only                                                                    
made  sense to  AML if  it included  looking at  broad-based                                                                    
taxes and considering the impacts on Alaskans.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Andreassen shared that  the organization understood that                                                                    
a  reduction to  the  PFD  was one  of  the more  regressive                                                                    
revenue measures  in the nation with  impacts to individuals                                                                    
without income or purchasing power.  He highlighted that PFD                                                                    
reductions  failed  to capture  revenue  from  out of  state                                                                    
activities  and workers  even as  it  allowed for  continued                                                                    
contributions  from the  PFD to  the federal  government. He                                                                    
clarified that  it was not  to say that reductions  were not                                                                    
necessary  or that  the conversation  was inappropriate.  He                                                                    
stressed that  the legislature  needed to  have conversation                                                                    
about broad-based taxes as soon as possible.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Vice-Chair Ortiz noted that the  previous year AML had given                                                                    
specific  input on  its preference  for  a broad-based  tax,                                                                    
with a  greater preference on  a tax based on  income versus                                                                    
sales. He asked  if the organization had  any perspective on                                                                    
the type of broad-based tax it would support.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Mr.  Andreassen replied  that in  the  previous and  current                                                                    
years AML  members had passed  a resolution in support  of a                                                                    
broad-based  tax with  a preference  for an  income tax.  He                                                                    
added that members  recognized that any taxes  (e.g. a sales                                                                    
tax or  something that  filled the  gap for  state revenues)                                                                    
needed to be on the table.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
1:42:45 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Wool referenced  Mr. Andreassen's  statement                                                                    
that a  conversation about a  reduced PFD should  not happen                                                                    
without a conversation about revenue.  He wondered if it was                                                                    
also  true  that a  conversation  about  revenue should  not                                                                    
occur without a conversation about a reduced PFD.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Mr.  Andreassen replied  in the  affirmative. He  elaborated                                                                    
that  AML's understanding  was  that  the state's  financial                                                                    
position  (including  a   presentation  by  the  Legislative                                                                    
Finance Division  the previous  day) was  at a  deficit even                                                                    
with  a  zero  dollar  PFD.  He  agreed  that  both  of  the                                                                    
conversations were necessary.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair   Johnston  was   concerned  by   Mr.  Andreassen's                                                                    
statement  that   cutting  the  PFD  equated   to  the  most                                                                    
regressive  tax  in  the  nation.   She  asked  for  further                                                                    
comment.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Andreassen  replied that  it depended  on whether  a cut                                                                    
was viewed as a tax. He  clarified that he had referred to a                                                                    
cut as a revenue measure. He  stated that as long as the PFD                                                                    
was reduced  and the rest of  the POMV was applied  to state                                                                    
government, the question of how  to pay for state government                                                                    
remained.  He elaborated  that a  reduction to  the PFD  was                                                                    
essentially a funding of state  government, which was a form                                                                    
of broad-based  taxation. He recognized  the point  could be                                                                    
argued.  The  idea was  that  a  reduction  to the  PFD  was                                                                    
regressive in the  sense that it took  away from individuals                                                                    
who were not earning or spending.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Johnston   remarked  on  her  concern   about  the                                                                    
statement that a cut to the  PFD was the most regressive tax                                                                    
in  the nation.  She pointed  out that  Alaska was  the only                                                                    
state that gave a dividend.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
1:45:05 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
JOMO  STEWART, FAIRBANKS  ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT  CORPORATION,                                                                    
FAIRBANKS  (via  teleconference),  shared that  because  the                                                                    
bills had been  introduced recently, he had not  yet had the                                                                    
ability  to  obtain  a position  from  the  corporation.  He                                                                    
defaulted to  positions the corporation held  throughout the                                                                    
process  in  the  past  year. He  shared  that  bankrupt  or                                                                    
debunked  corporations did  not pay  dividends because  they                                                                    
could not. It  was the reason the first  responsibility of a                                                                    
fiduciary   was  to   the  health   and  wellbeing   of  the                                                                    
corporation,  followed by  the maximization  or distribution                                                                    
of shares to shareholders.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Mr.   Stewart   reported   that   the   Fairbanks   Economic                                                                    
Development Corporation  supported the  primary underpinning                                                                    
of both bills - the  adherence to the professionally defined                                                                    
and  statutorily enacted  sustainable draw  on the  Earnings                                                                    
Reserve Account (ERA) regardless of  the proposed use of the                                                                    
funds. He  elaborated support  for keeping  the more  like a                                                                    
corporate dividend than an entitlement.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Stewart  spoke to the  division of  the funds in  HB 300                                                                    
and HB 306 from a  personal position. He was concerned about                                                                    
the idea  of a  rigid distribution or  division of  funds in                                                                    
light  of the  increasing  challenges facing  the state.  He                                                                    
believed that  circumstances might  overwhelm the  state and                                                                    
it  may  be necessary  to  have  more flexibility  than  the                                                                    
divisions outlined in either of the bills.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Carpenter asked  what  a  logical follow  up                                                                    
conversation  would  be   if  a  corporation's  shareholders                                                                    
received  a  reduced dividend.  He  asked  if a  corporation                                                                    
would  look  to generate  revenue  by  modifying its  market                                                                    
stance and/or  look at making modifications  to its expenses                                                                    
that had led to not having a dividend.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Stewart agreed.  He stated that based  on his experience                                                                    
it  was a  low  bar. He  spoke to  the  prudence of  keeping                                                                    
downward  pressure  on  the budget.  However,  he  cautioned                                                                    
against making cuts to the extent  that harm was done to the                                                                    
corporation's ability to sustain  itself and generate future                                                                    
revenues. He  spoke to the  importance about  thinking about                                                                    
the health of  a corporation, broadly speaking,  in order to                                                                    
maintain  the  ability  of the  corporation  to  pay  future                                                                    
dividends over time.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
1:48:58 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
SUE  SHERIF, SELF,  FAIRBANKS  (via teleconference),  shared                                                                    
that she had  come to Alaska prior to  the implementation of                                                                    
the PFD, before oil funds  had filled the state coffers, and                                                                    
when an income tax had  existed. She recalled there had been                                                                    
an education  head tax, a  university offering a  full range                                                                    
of  classes,  an operational  ferry  system,  and a  central                                                                    
focus on education. She had not  had enough time to read all                                                                    
of  the materials  and had  some questions  about projection                                                                    
charts  that  had  been  presented   to  the  committee  the                                                                    
previous day. She could not  speak to the particulars of the                                                                    
bills.  She supported  the idea  of community  assistance in                                                                    
HB  300 sponsored  by Representative  Wool. She  believed it                                                                    
would  take ideas  like  Representative  Wool's and  Senator                                                                    
Click  Bishop  fuel tax  proposal  in  order to  tackle  the                                                                    
problem  head on.  She  hoped  the two  PFD  bills would  be                                                                    
debated in the current  session. Additionally, she supported                                                                    
debate over other revenue-focused  plans to ensure they were                                                                    
not   robbing  infrastructure   and  services   from  future                                                                    
Alaskans. She  highlighted lower than forecasted  oil prices                                                                    
and the bear market that  had started in the stock exchange.                                                                    
She  spoke to  the importance  of adding  additional revenue                                                                    
sources.  She  hoped there  would  be  a full-fledged,  open                                                                    
discussion on the topics during the current session.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
1:52:18 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
JEANINE  ST. JOHN,  VICE PRESIDENT,  LYNDEN, ANCHORAGE  (via                                                                    
teleconference), testified in support  of HB 306. She shared                                                                    
that Lynden  was a multi-modal transportation  and logistics                                                                    
company  that  provided   transportation  services  for  all                                                                    
segments of  the economy throughout Alaska.  She highlighted                                                                    
that the POMV draw had been  established under SB 26 in June                                                                    
2018.  She  stated  that  at  the time,  there  had  been  a                                                                    
recognition   the   bill   lacked  a   structure   for   the                                                                    
appropriations  from the  ERA.  She continued  that the  PFD                                                                    
formula and allocation  had created a problem  for the state                                                                    
and a  fiscal plan had  been hijacked  by the desire  to pay                                                                    
citizens  before   state  services.   She  noted   that  the                                                                    
situation  typically  resulted in  a  call  for more  taxes,                                                                    
which created  a larger problem for  the state, particularly                                                                    
when taxes were targeted at the resource industry.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Ms.  St. John  believed the  statutory formula  was outdated                                                                    
and  had not  been  contemplated for  the current  situation                                                                    
facing the  state. She stressed  that if businesses  did not                                                                    
adjust  their plan  in 38  years,  they would  not grow  and                                                                    
would likely  be out of  business. She highlighted  that the                                                                    
Alaska Permanent  Fund Corporation (APFC) Board  of Trustees                                                                    
had  expressed concerns  about  the  appropriations and  the                                                                    
process for  utilizing ERA funds. The  bill helped alleviate                                                                    
and set  a course for  stabilizing the  use of the  ERA. She                                                                    
stated that  HB 306  was structured  to mitigate  the issues                                                                    
and  establish   clear  rules.  She  spoke   in  support  of                                                                    
stabilizing  the   budget  process  and  setting   a  course                                                                    
correction for the  PFD program that had been  in flux since                                                                    
2016.  She  thanked the  committee  for  the opportunity  to                                                                    
testify.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
1:54:49 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
JOHN  S.  SONIN,  CIVILIZED  HUMANITY,  JUNEAU,  represented                                                                    
civilized humanity.  He was mostly  compelled by  the recent                                                                    
introduction  of a  Senate bill  that gave  Alaskan land  in                                                                    
lieu  of dividends.  He reported  that it  made him  want to                                                                    
address the issue. He supported  the community grant concept                                                                    
in HB 300. He thought  that giving away land a destabilizing                                                                    
supply-side  economic policy.  He stated  that no  one could                                                                    
forego  their share  of the  state's profits  and trade  for                                                                    
property except for  those who did not need  it. He believed                                                                    
the  PFD was  more  of an  economic  stimulus than  anything                                                                    
else. He  spoke to  the need  to keep  the economy  vital by                                                                    
providing economic stimulus for  individuals able to use the                                                                    
funds.                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
1:58:05 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Johnston  relayed that  she was  trying to  call on                                                                    
individuals based on when they had signed up to speak.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
MIKE  HAMAR,  SELF,  JUNEAU, shared  information  about  his                                                                    
background. He  shared that  he was  a fan  of the  late Jay                                                                    
Hammond. He  provided remarks from a  prepared statement. He                                                                    
stated that  as forecasts  for state revenue  streams looked                                                                    
grim,  he  believed  the  dividend/government  ratio  should                                                                    
remain the  same. He believed  Alaska was an owner  state (a                                                                    
phrase  used by  former  Governor Wally  Hickel). He  opined                                                                    
that the dividend  was the most equitable  way for residents                                                                    
to  share  in  state  wealth.   He  stated  that  while  the                                                                    
government may know better where  to spend/invest the funds,                                                                    
it should  not assume  that was the  case. He  remarked that                                                                    
the PFD  pitted individual  greed against  collective greed.                                                                    
He highlighted  the intended purpose of  the Permanent Fund.                                                                    
He believed  any tax  imposed should be  done in  the manner                                                                    
that  was the  least regressive.  He quoted  former Governor                                                                    
Jay Hammond as  saying that a portion of the  wealth must go                                                                    
to residents  and that if  more funds were needed  for basic                                                                    
institutions of  government, the government must  find a way                                                                    
to claw  the money  back. He thanked  the committee  for its                                                                    
time.                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
2:00:40 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
VALERIE  THERRIEN, SELF,  FAIRBANKS,  supported  HB 306  and                                                                    
applauded the  committee and  Representative Wool  for their                                                                    
leadership on  ways to fund  the government. She was  on the                                                                    
Fairbanks City  Council, which had  not taken a  position on                                                                    
the bill. She shared that  the Fairbanks budget at the local                                                                    
level  was tight  and the  council had  asked for  funds for                                                                    
community   assistance,   revenue   sharing,   and   various                                                                    
services.  She detailed  that the  community dividend  would                                                                    
enable  the community  to  determine the  best  use for  the                                                                    
funds. She  did not  personally feel entitled  to a  PFD and                                                                    
supported a  reduction. She had  been saddened by  cuts that                                                                    
had taken place at the  university level. She noted the city                                                                    
was always  looking for  funds to take  care of  its capital                                                                    
projects  and she  believed the  community dividend  program                                                                    
would work well. She thanked the committee for its time.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
2:03:00 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
JUNE ROGERS, SELF, JUNEAU,  shared information about herself                                                                    
and  her   family  living  in   Alaska.  She   provided  her                                                                    
background  in working  with an  opioid taskforce,  homeless                                                                    
initiatives,  reentry programs,  and  other social  services                                                                    
organizations.  The  goal  for   the  organizations  was  to                                                                    
achieve  the most  results for  the smallest  expenditure of                                                                    
funds. She noted that she  currently served on the Fairbanks                                                                    
City Council that did not have  a position on the issue. She                                                                    
was impressed with Representative  Wool's attempt for HB 300                                                                    
to bring focus to a very  difficult topic.  She spoke to the                                                                    
importance of talking  about ideas to develop  a solution to                                                                    
the budget situation.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Representative Knopp referenced testimony  by Ms. Rogers and                                                                    
Ms. Therrian on the community  dividend component of HB 300.                                                                    
He wondered  if a community  dividend would be a  better use                                                                    
of  state funds  than a  PFD  to individuals  (if the  state                                                                    
could not afford both).                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Ms.  Rogers revisited  several other  conversations she  had                                                                    
recently.  She had  only just  learned about  Representative                                                                    
Wool's  bill HB  300. She  firmly believed  working together                                                                    
through  the  community  was a  direct  line  to  individual                                                                    
participation  in the  community.  She did  not believe  the                                                                    
bill would take from individuals  in an unreasonable way and                                                                    
would  share the  load. She  believed  the bill  was a  good                                                                    
effort that deserved discussion and support.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
2:07:13 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CRIS  EICHENLAUB, SELF,  EAGLE  RIVER (via  teleconference),                                                                    
opposed  the bills.  He believed  the  budget situation  had                                                                    
occurred  due   to  the   mismanagement  of   resources  and                                                                    
oversized budgets,  not oversized  PFDs. He stated  that the                                                                    
legislature   needed  to   focus  on   responsible  resource                                                                    
development.  He   noted  that  the   Constitutional  Budget                                                                    
Reserve (CBR)  had already been  depleted. He  suspected the                                                                    
legislature would  use the funds in  the ERA and move  on to                                                                    
the corpus of the Permanent  Fund.  He supported putting the                                                                    
funding  into the  private sector  and  not towards  special                                                                    
interest. He supported putting the  statutory formula in the                                                                    
constitution in order to prevent  using the funds. He stated                                                                    
that oil  prices had been at  $9 per barrel in  the past and                                                                    
the state had made it  through. He reiterated his opposition                                                                    
to the bills.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
2:09:17 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REBECCA  CRELLEY,  SELF,   ANCHORAGE  (via  teleconference),                                                                    
testified against the  bills. She shared that  she had grown                                                                    
up in poverty  in a large family. She  highlighted that when                                                                    
poor people did  not receive their PFDs it had  a big impact                                                                    
on families with  children. She provided a  scenario where a                                                                    
single  mother  had  problems   feeding  her  children.  She                                                                    
elaborated that  there were many  unmet needs if  the mother                                                                    
did not receive the PFD.  She detailed that the mother could                                                                    
have  problems with  a vehicle,  paying  utilities, or  with                                                                    
purchasing sufficient  groceries to  feed her  children. She                                                                    
supported  paying  out  a minimum  PFD.  She  suggested  the                                                                    
legislature should figure  out a tax system for  the rest of                                                                    
Alaskans who could  afford to pay an income  tax. She wanted                                                                    
to see the poor people in the state get what they needed.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
2:11:38 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
JOAN  WARE,  SELF,  TOK (via  teleconference),  opposed  the                                                                    
bills. She disagreed with previous  testimony that the bills                                                                    
were the  most feasible way  to balance the budget.  She did                                                                    
not support  any reduction to  the PFD. She believed  it was                                                                    
illegal to  not give a  PFD that Alaskans were  entitled to.                                                                    
She was happy  the committee was looking at  ways to balance                                                                    
the budget. She  was in favor of any bill  that would freeze                                                                    
raises for  any legislators  until the budget  was balanced.                                                                    
She  supported an  increase to  the gas  tax in  Alaska. She                                                                    
stressed that  the gas tax in  Alaska was lower than  in any                                                                    
other state.  She referenced a  gas tax proposal  by Senator                                                                    
Bishop that she  supported. She had heard  it would increase                                                                    
revenue by  approximately $1 billion per  year. She believed                                                                    
it took about $1.5 billion to  pay the PFD. She was in favor                                                                    
of any  bill that  would discontinue  any state  funding for                                                                    
abortion.  She thought  it would  increase state  funds. She                                                                    
shared that she may be in  favor in an increase in education                                                                    
tax. She liked  the idea that Governor Dunleavy  had come up                                                                    
with regarding land in lieu  of funds. She was supportive of                                                                    
anything other than taking the PFD.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Johnston  clarified that  Senator Bishop's  gas tax                                                                    
bill would bring in between  $20 million and $30 million for                                                                    
road maintenance.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
2:17:19 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
RICHARD  WARE,  SELF,  TOK,  spoke  against  the  bills.  He                                                                    
opposed  the 80/20  proposal  [in HB  306]  that would  take                                                                    
funds from the PFD. He stated  that taking the PFD away from                                                                    
citizens  disproportionately  impacted   poor  Alaskans.  He                                                                    
spoke about things that PFD  funds went to including wood to                                                                    
heat  homes. He  used his  PFD to  pay for  bills and  other                                                                    
things as  he saw fit. He  believed it was an  elitist point                                                                    
of  view when  the legislature  thought it  could spend  the                                                                    
money   better  than   residents.  He   referenced  a   bill                                                                    
containing a proposed tax on  oil companies that would bring                                                                    
in  $1  billion.  He  asked  if  the  bill  passed  and  the                                                                    
legislature  started   bringing  in  $1  billion   from  oil                                                                    
companies  whether Alaskans  would get  funds back  that had                                                                    
been taken in recent years.  He reiterated his opposition to                                                                    
the  legislation.  He  shared  that  when  he  had  owned  a                                                                    
business, he had  been faced with determining  places to cut                                                                    
when things  got tight.  He thought cutting  the PFD  was an                                                                    
easy way for the legislature to  come up with money and that                                                                    
it was illegal.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Representative Merrick  asked if Tok was  an incorporated or                                                                    
unincorporated area.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Ware answered that Tok was unincorporated.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
2:20:07 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CARRIE   HARRIS,  SELF,   ANCHORAGE  (via   teleconference),                                                                    
testified in  strong opposition to both  bills. She believed                                                                    
immediately  paying back  the  last four  years  of the  PFD                                                                    
would help  ensure Alaskans could  stay home when  they were                                                                    
sick. She detailed it would  help slow the spread and lessen                                                                    
the  impact of  the  Coronavirus without  fear of  financial                                                                    
hardship. She elaborated that there  was a rolling financial                                                                    
impact  of the  virus. She  detailed that  time off  of work                                                                    
caused expense  to employers and  individuals. Additionally,                                                                    
the  virus  would  change  the  way  people  spend  money  -                                                                    
unnecessary  spending  would  change. She  spoke  about  the                                                                    
extreme  hit the  tourist industry  was about  to take.  She                                                                    
stressed that people needed some  type of financial security                                                                    
or they would  not spend anything in the  economy. She spoke                                                                    
to impacts of  the virus like limited  home construction and                                                                    
other.  Impacts would  strongly  hit municipalities  because                                                                    
shops and restaurants would be  hard hit. She reiterated her                                                                    
support for paying back past PFDs immediately.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
2:23:11 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
ALAN  DAVIS,   SELF,  ANCHOR  POINT   (via  teleconference),                                                                    
opposed the  bills. He thought  any change to  the statutory                                                                    
PFD  without  a vote  of  the  people should  be  considered                                                                    
embezzlement.  He  believed   meaningful  budget  cuts  were                                                                    
needed in  order to realistically determine  what additional                                                                    
revenue  sources were  needed. He  thanked the  governor and                                                                    
Representative  Sarah  Vance  on   their  stance  on  fiscal                                                                    
responsibility.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
2:24:14 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
DON  GRAY, SELF,  FAIRBANKS (via  teleconference), supported                                                                    
HB  300.  He  stated  that  the  U.S.  government  had  been                                                                    
democratic since the writing of  the constitution. He shared                                                                    
personal details  about his  life. He  stated that  the bill                                                                    
provided for a smaller annual PFD  of about $900 and did not                                                                    
eliminate it.  The additional  money would  be used  for the                                                                    
University   of  Alaska   and   to  individual   communities                                                                    
throughout the state. He provided  detail about the bill. He                                                                    
highlighted that each Alaskan  community was unique - urban,                                                                    
rural,  maritime,  and more.  He  noted  there were  several                                                                    
buildings in  disrepair. He noted that  former Governor Bill                                                                    
Sheffield  believed  the  dividend  was  a  two-edged  sword                                                                    
because any  governor who opposed  or advocated  taxes would                                                                    
likely  not be  reelected. He  noted that  Sheffield thought                                                                    
the  state  income  tax  that  had  been  eliminated  should                                                                    
probably have  been extended. He  shared that he had  been a                                                                    
teacher and a stockbroker. He  thought that all of the items                                                                    
proposed in  HB 30 [300] were  ways to improve the  lives of                                                                    
the   state's   citizens   -   there   would   be   a   PFD,                                                                    
infrastructure, schools,  and services  that made  the state                                                                    
civilized.  He  stressed  that  Alaskans  were  all  in  the                                                                    
situation together.  He supported the  passage of HB  300 or                                                                    
something better was fair to future generations.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
2:29:18 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CALVIN CASIPIT,  MAYOR, CITY OF GUSTAVUS,  ANCHOR POINT (via                                                                    
teleconference), supported the  Community Assistance Program                                                                    
and HB  300. He  thought bill  may help  out or  replace the                                                                    
current  program. He  shared that  community assistance  had                                                                    
been  a reliable  source of  desperately needed  funding for                                                                    
small  rural communities  like  Gustavus.  He reported  that                                                                    
Gustavus relied on the funding  to operate city services and                                                                    
provide  needed services  to  residents.  The community  had                                                                    
limited  and typically  small  revenue  streams. He  relayed                                                                    
that reducing the  community's budget by $20,000  had a huge                                                                    
impact, especially  with the threat  of the  Coronavirus and                                                                    
the impact it may have  on the tourism industry. He detailed                                                                    
that  most   of  the  community's  sales   tax  revenue  was                                                                    
generated  by  tourism. He  stated  that  the importance  of                                                                    
community  assistance was  amplified  in  the current  year.                                                                    
Reducing state  assistance could  not come  at a  worse time                                                                    
for  Gustavus. He  supported restoring  community assistance                                                                    
to  the  maximum  allowable  level.   The  community  had  a                                                                    
difficult time  providing services to residents  without the                                                                    
funds.  He  shared  different   ways  the  community  raised                                                                    
revenues including  sales and  bed taxes  and user  fees. He                                                                    
stressed that community assistance  funding was a vital part                                                                    
of  the  community's  funding   structure.  He  thanked  the                                                                    
committee for its time.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
2:32:17 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MIKE  COONS,   SELF,  PALMER  (via   teleconference),  spoke                                                                    
against the legislation.  He stated that the  two bills were                                                                    
nothing but  smoke and mirrors.  He stressed that  the bills                                                                    
would   grow  government   with  the   peoples'  money.   He                                                                    
underscored   that   the   bills   were   taxation   without                                                                    
representation. He  supported a  vote of  the people  on the                                                                    
issue.  He  was  one  of the  "unwashed  valley  trash"  the                                                                    
legislature had come  to see in the summer  when it traveled                                                                    
around  the  state claiming  to  listen  to the  voters.  He                                                                    
believed   legislators  had   come   with   an  agenda   and                                                                    
preconceived notions  about what they wanted.  He thought it                                                                    
had been  a dog and  pony show. He believed  the legislature                                                                    
had no intention of listening  and acting on what the public                                                                    
had to say.  He thought the legislature had  intent to spend                                                                    
the money of the people  to use towards its socialist goals.                                                                    
He listed  House Minority members  on the committee  that he                                                                    
believed were the  only members standing for  the state, its                                                                    
people, and their oath of office.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
2:34:30 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
SUSAN SHULER,  SELF, SEWARD (via  teleconference), testified                                                                    
in  opposition to  the bills.  She agreed  with many  of the                                                                    
previous callers.  She shared  that she was  part of  a one-                                                                    
income family  in Seward. She  discussed that  the community                                                                    
may  see  no   cruise  ships  in  the  summer   due  to  the                                                                    
Coronavirus.  She did  not support  a  cut to  the PFD.  She                                                                    
highlighted items such as food  and fuel that were purchased                                                                    
with  the PFD.  She stressed  a reduction  to the  PFD would                                                                    
have  a  tremendous  hit on  smaller  economies  around  the                                                                    
state. She  emphasized that  the PFD  made a  difference for                                                                    
many  including single  parents and  retired residents.  She                                                                    
asked what the  legislature was doing to  help. She stressed                                                                    
there was  overspending and a  lack of picking up  funds and                                                                    
more revenue. She  suggested that perhaps the  deals for oil                                                                    
companies needed  to be less  sweet. She thought  the budget                                                                    
had been overspent for years.  She believed the topic should                                                                    
go to the public for debate.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
2:37:10 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
DARREL  SMITH,   SELF,  JUNEAU  (via   teleconference),  was                                                                    
opposed to  the bills. He  thought the legislature  had been                                                                    
overspending  for   years.  He  stated  that   stealing  the                                                                    
dividend,  which  was the  biggest  economic  driver in  the                                                                    
state,  was   crazy.  He  believed  that   private  industry                                                                    
supplied jobs,  not government.  He thought  the legislature                                                                    
took the money  and wasted it on  special interest projects.                                                                    
He stated that one-fifth of  the budget went to Medicaid. He                                                                    
thought  it  required $281  million  the  previous week.  He                                                                    
remarked  that if  the federal  government did  not pay  100                                                                    
percent   of  the   Medicaid  program,   the  state   should                                                                    
discontinue its  participation. He  supported an  income tax                                                                    
and  a school  tax. He  was  opposed to  the state  building                                                                    
multimillion dollar  schools. He thought  communities should                                                                    
pay for  their own schools.  He thought Anchorage  needed to                                                                    
implement  a  sales  tax  if it  wanted  money.  He  thought                                                                    
legislators should  be in  jail for  not fully  funding past                                                                    
statutory  PFDs.   He  stated  the   legislators'  socialist                                                                    
programs would not work.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Representative LeBon asked Mr. Smith  if he had a suggestion                                                                    
on how to support the Alaska Marine Highway System (AMHS).                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Mr.  Smith  replied  that the  legislature  could  take  $20                                                                    
billion out of the Permanent Fund to build some new ships.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
2:39:34 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
LEE  LESCHPER, SELF,  ANCHORAGE (via  teleconference), spoke                                                                    
in support of HB 306. He  shared that he is a small business                                                                    
owner and  worked with  businesses of  all types  across the                                                                    
state. He  heard from  most to all  of the  businesses about                                                                    
the negative  impact of the  current fiscal  uncertainty and                                                                    
the  fact that  no  action  had been  taken  to resolve  the                                                                    
situation. He  saw HB 306  as a meaningful plan  that headed                                                                    
in the direction of solving  the fiscal situation. He stated                                                                    
that  continuing the  status quo  would  not bring  economic                                                                    
stability,  adequate  state  services,  or  a  dividend.  He                                                                    
worked  in   other  states  that  had   dramatically  higher                                                                    
property  taxes, sales  taxes  of  6 to  8  percent, and  no                                                                    
dividends. He would much rather  have a small PFD with lower                                                                    
taxes.  He remarked  he had  been  involved in  many of  the                                                                    
groups  that had  debated the  solution to  the problem  for                                                                    
many years and  HB 306 was the first meaningful  plan he had                                                                    
seen. He encouraged the legislature to take action.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
2:41:25 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MARY  CORNELIUS,   SELF,  FAIRBANKS   (via  teleconference),                                                                    
shared that  she was  a 40-year  resident of  Fairbanks. She                                                                    
strongly  opposed the  bills.  She stated  that  she was  an                                                                    
original resident  that signed  the contract with  the State                                                                    
of Alaska  that no federal  or state agency would  touch her                                                                    
PFD.  She felt  the contract  had been  breached. She  asked                                                                    
when the  PFDs that  had been  taken would  be paid  back to                                                                    
residents.  She  had  opted  out of  receiving  a  lump  sum                                                                    
because  she felt  an annual  dividend would  benefit future                                                                    
generations. She asked what the  legislature would be giving                                                                    
back  to the  people if  it continued  to take  dividends to                                                                    
increase the state budget.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Johnston asked what contract she had signed.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Ms.  Cornelius replied  that she  had signed  a contract  an                                                                    
original PFD contract  when it had been up to  the people to                                                                    
decide  whether they  would receive  a one-time  payout. She                                                                    
stated it  had originally  started out  at $50,000,  but her                                                                    
family believed  it was too  small. She stated that  each of                                                                    
her family members could have  taken the $50,000 and started                                                                    
a business  or invested  in a house.  She stressed  they had                                                                    
agreed to a PFD.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Johnston replied that she  had been in Alaska since                                                                    
1975 and had never seen a contract.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
2:43:48 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
BERT  HOUGHTALIND,  SELF,  BIG  LAKE  (via  teleconference),                                                                    
spoke against the  bills. He stated that the  plans were the                                                                    
same as ones presented to  a bicameral workgroup in the past                                                                    
fall. He recalled  that the workgroup had used  a budget PFD                                                                    
tool that  had shown if  the PFD  was eliminated as  the tax                                                                    
revenue  the legislature  was  trying to  turn  it into,  it                                                                    
resulted in a $900 million  surplus. He noted that even with                                                                    
the current market declining, there  was a surplus of around                                                                    
$500 million  based on current  Permanent Fund  earnings. He                                                                    
noted the Permanent  Fund balance had been  $68 billion, but                                                                    
it was now closer to $65  billion due to the market drop. He                                                                    
stressed that the bills did  not reflect reality for Alaska,                                                                    
which was proven by the legislature's PFD budget tool.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Mr.  Houghtalind stressed  that the  budget tool  showed the                                                                    
money was  not tax  revenue to  be used  for the  budget. He                                                                    
stated that the plans did  not provide inflation proofing or                                                                    
cut  from the  budget.  Everything that  had been  presented                                                                    
offered a  doom and gloom  scenario that if  the legislature                                                                    
could not  gain access to the  ERA, it would not  be able to                                                                    
pay  for the  special interest  budget. He  believed special                                                                    
interests were testifying. He thought  the cuts would impose                                                                    
the  most regressive  tax and  would keep  the state  in the                                                                    
longest  recession it  had  ever seen.  He  did not  support                                                                    
turning the  PFD into  a giant welfare  check by  giving the                                                                    
funds to communities. He strongly opposed the bills.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
2:47:42 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CATHERINE  SELT, SELF,  KENAI (via  teleconference), opposed                                                                    
the bills.  She believed statutory  changes to the  PFD were                                                                    
pointless because  statutory formulas were ignored  at will.                                                                    
She supported a  permanent solution for the PFD  in the form                                                                    
of a  constitutional amendment. She thought  the 80/20 split                                                                    
was unfair.  She stated that  children knew it was  right to                                                                    
split  things 50/50.  She heard  repeatedly  that the  state                                                                    
could not afford to pay a  PFD; however, the PFD did not get                                                                    
the state into its  current budgetary problems. She believed                                                                    
the state could  not afford to put off  new revenue measures                                                                    
any longer.  She found  it ridiculous there  was not  a plan                                                                    
for broad-based  taxes. She  also supported  additional cuts                                                                    
to  government  services.  She   stressed  the  need  for  a                                                                    
comprehensive  approach.  She  noted   that  the  state  was                                                                    
looking at  a potential  economic collapse resulting  from a                                                                    
decline  the price  of oil  and  in tourism  in the  current                                                                    
year.  She  did not  understand  why  the legislature  would                                                                    
choose to  fund the  budget with a  revenue option  that was                                                                    
most harmful  to Alaskan families  and the economy.  She did                                                                    
not understand why  the legislature was not  looking at what                                                                    
the distributional  impacts of  what funding  the government                                                                    
with the  PFD would be.  She supported revenue  options that                                                                    
included nonresidents.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
2:49:53 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MIKE GILLIS,  SELF, BIG LAKE (via  teleconference), spoke in                                                                    
opposition  to  both  bills.  He   described  himself  as  a                                                                    
realist.  He  believed that  once  the  legislature got  its                                                                    
hands on the PFD, it would  keep taking funding until it was                                                                    
gone.  He wanted  the legislature  to  give residents  their                                                                    
subsurface mineral rights back.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
2:50:43 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
KRISTEN  BUSH,  SELF,   EAGLE  RIVER  (via  teleconference),                                                                    
testified against the bills. She  found it unfathomable that                                                                    
they  were  revisiting  the topic.  She  stressed  that  the                                                                    
legislature needed to  do the hard work with  the budget and                                                                    
not look to  steal the money from the PFD.  She believed the                                                                    
PFD formula had worked for a  very long time. She noted that                                                                    
many people  would say  that times  had changed.  She agreed                                                                    
but highlighted that  there had been no  serious budget caps                                                                    
or reductions  in order  to live  within the  state's means.                                                                    
She  reasoned  that  in  a   simple  family  budget  it  was                                                                    
necessary to have  more money coming in than  going out. She                                                                    
stressed that  the PFD  was not  the personal  piggybank for                                                                    
every dollar  and project. She was  particularly upset about                                                                    
the idea of taking the  PFD from children. She stressed that                                                                    
children had  zero input  in the matter.  She stated  it was                                                                    
taxation without  representation. She reiterated  her desire                                                                    
for a budget cap.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
2:52:45 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
JOHN ALICH, SELF, SALCHA  (via teleconference), testified in                                                                    
opposition  to  the  bills.  He   was  disappointed  in  the                                                                    
legislature. He needed  his full PFD. He shared  that he had                                                                    
been in Alaska since 1977  and had retired from food service                                                                    
for two  years. He spoke  to the  high cost of  utilities in                                                                    
Alaska. He  supported receiving  the full  supplemental PFDs                                                                    
from the past couple of  years. He believed that any changes                                                                    
to the PFD needed  to go to a vote of  the people. He stated                                                                    
that  his   representatives  were  not   representing  their                                                                    
constituents. He reiterated the need  for full and past PFDs                                                                    
and help with electric bills.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
2:54:13 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
ROBERT HEATHERINGTON, SELF,  ANCHORAGE (via teleconference),                                                                    
was strongly opposed to the  bills. He thought the situation                                                                    
was  ridiculous.  He  believed that  most  legislators  only                                                                    
cared  about  themselves  and not  individual  Alaskans.  He                                                                    
spoke  to the  high heating  cost in  Fairbanks. He  thought                                                                    
legislators wanted  Alaska to become  a socialist  state. He                                                                    
asked why his neighbor had to  fret that they could not make                                                                    
it  through the  winter  because they  could  not pay  their                                                                    
bills. He  thought the  legislature wanted  to hoard  all of                                                                    
the money to  itself to pay special interests.  He opposed a                                                                    
fuel tax. He stressed that  residents already paid enough in                                                                    
fuel tax.  He thought a cut  to the PFD and  the addition of                                                                    
taxes made no  sense. He asked the legislature  to listen to                                                                    
the people.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
2:56:52 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
JOANIE   BERNIER,   SELF,  WASILLA   (via   teleconference),                                                                    
testified against  the bills. She  found it  disgusting that                                                                    
the legislature  was discussing the  garnishment of  the PFD                                                                    
during a pandemic outbreak.  She believed legislators needed                                                                    
to  demonstrate they  worked for  the  people by  protecting                                                                    
them. She  opined that the  remainder of the  current year's                                                                    
PFD   should  be   deposited   immediately  into   Alaskan's                                                                    
accounts.  She  thought  there  were a  lot  of  low  income                                                                    
residents  who could  use the  money immediately  to prepare                                                                    
their families  and help their neighbors  during the current                                                                    
health  crisis. She  stressed  that  individuals could  help                                                                    
each other on a local,  personal level more efficiently than                                                                    
bureaucracy could.  She thought the legislators  were afraid                                                                    
to put the  issue to a vote because they  knew Alaskans were                                                                    
independent and did not want more government.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
2:58:09 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
LD  HOWARD,  SELF,  PALMER (via  teleconference),  testified                                                                    
against the  bills. He shared  that he was a  small business                                                                    
owner  in Mat-Su.  He stressed  that the  PFD infused  money                                                                    
into  all communities  around Alaska.  He  pointed out  that                                                                    
money spent  on recreational  toys also increased  the money                                                                    
spent  as  Alaskans  enjoyed  the   state.  He  stated  that                                                                    
retroactively paying  the PFDs  back would  stabilize Alaska                                                                    
during the current times. He  added that many families saved                                                                    
the  PFD for  their  children's college  funds. He  believed                                                                    
that  stealing  the PFD  from  Alaskans  was stealing  their                                                                    
futures. He  spoke to the  slow population growth  in Alaska                                                                    
and  asked why  a reconfiguration  of the  PFD by  taking as                                                                    
much as 30  percent more was needed. He did  not know why it                                                                    
was an issue. He strongly  encouraged the legislature to put                                                                    
the issue to a vote of the people.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
2:59:44 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
JAVEN  OSE,  SELF,  ANCHORAGE  (via  teleconference),  spoke                                                                    
against  the bills.  He referenced  the prior  testimony and                                                                    
believed  the people  had spoken  clearly on  the bills.  He                                                                    
shared information  about his personal experience  living in                                                                    
Alaska.   He  thought   the   legislature   was  trying   to                                                                    
"Californicate" Alaska. He stressed  that Alaskans would get                                                                    
all of  their money back even  if it took five  to ten years                                                                    
and  required  sweeping  the  House  and  Senate  clean.  He                                                                    
demanded the legislature give residents their money back.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
3:00:54 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
WALTER TELLMAN,  SELF, WASILLA (via teleconference),  was in                                                                    
favor of taking another look  at how the state was spending.                                                                    
He shared  that and his  family had  lived in the  state for                                                                    
over  60  years. He  was  grateful  to  live in  Alaska  and                                                                    
recognized the state was in  a tough place. He supported the                                                                    
bills. He thought  it was necessary to do  something. He was                                                                    
willing to  give up a  portion of his  PFD. He did  not envy                                                                    
the job facing legislators.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
3:02:46 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
DEAN KASISCHKE,  SELF, SEWARD (via teleconference),  did not                                                                    
support the bills.  He resented the way the  House was using                                                                    
the binding caucus  to steal the PFD and take  away from the                                                                    
people's ability to vote on the  issue. He wanted a voice in                                                                    
how the PFD was distributed and spent.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
3:03:54 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
EUGENE  VIRDEN,  SELF,  EAGLE  RIVER  (via  teleconference),                                                                    
opposed  the bills.  He  thought the  issue  would never  be                                                                    
settled  without a  vote of  the people.  He thought  it was                                                                    
terrible  to  take the  funds  away  from grandchildren.  He                                                                    
remarked   that  residents   used  the   money  for   higher                                                                    
education. He  was thankful for good  representatives in his                                                                    
district.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
3:04:55 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
RON JOHNSON, SELF, FAIRBANKS  (via teleconference), spoke in                                                                    
support of  HB 306  or any  bill that  would change  the PFD                                                                    
formula to reflect the current  realities. He discussed that                                                                    
when the original formula had  been developed 35 years back,                                                                    
the government  had been  funded solely  with oil  money. He                                                                    
pointed out  that all of  the Permanent Fund  earnings could                                                                    
have been  given to  the PFD  at the time  and it  would not                                                                    
have  impacted  the  government's ability  to  function.  He                                                                    
stated that the  situation was reversed in  the current day.                                                                    
He elaborated  that most of  the unrestricted  general funds                                                                    
came  from the  POMV  draw.  He stressed  the  need to  have                                                                    
sufficient funds  from the draw  to pay for the  function of                                                                    
government. He  suggested that  some of  the savings  from a                                                                    
lower PFD  could be  used to buoy  the Department  of Health                                                                    
and  Social  Services budget,  which  would  help people  in                                                                    
need. He  believed many  people in the  state would  be fine                                                                    
without a large PFD. He  highlighted that for many years the                                                                    
PFD was  around $1,000 and  there had been no  complaints at                                                                    
the  time. He  was  in favor  of  a bill  like  HB 306  that                                                                    
reflected the  realities of the present.  He reiterated that                                                                    
most  government funding  was  coming out  of the  Permanent                                                                    
Fund  and it  was necessary  to  preserve the  fund for  the                                                                    
future to  enable government  to function  and to  deal with                                                                    
crisis like the Coronavirus.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
3:07:03 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
VIVIA  KUZMIN, SELF,  DELTA  JUNCTION (via  teleconference),                                                                    
spoke against  HB 306.  She believed it  was unfair  for the                                                                    
legislature to  take away  the people's  share of  the 50/50                                                                    
allocation of  the PFD. She  supported a vote of  the people                                                                    
on the issue.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair   Johnston   noted   there   were   no   additional                                                                    
individuals  online  to  testify.  She  shared  the  call-in                                                                    
numbers and email addresses to provide testimony.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
3:08:53 PM                                                                                                                    
RECESSED                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
5:02:29 PM                                                                                                                    
RECONVENED                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Johnston reviewed  the  public testimony  protocol                                                                    
and reviewed the call in numbers.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
5:04:12 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
BRUCE  BARCUS, SELF,  PALMER (via  teleconference), did  not                                                                    
support former Governor Walker's  decision to veto a portion                                                                    
of  past  PFDs. He  stated  the  people  of Alaska  all  had                                                                    
interest  in  the  dividend. He  believed  special  interest                                                                    
groups asking  for money  took money out  of the  pockets of                                                                    
Alaskans. He thought the people  should be allowed to decide                                                                    
what to do. He supported a  petition to get the issue on the                                                                    
ballot. He discussed  the dramatic drop in  the stock market                                                                    
and the difficult financial times.  He shared that he had to                                                                    
quit his  job and was looking  for work. He stated  that the                                                                    
PFD  would go  a  long  way helping  his  pocketbook in  the                                                                    
current year.  He was  hoping the  governor would  request a                                                                    
vote  on  the issue  by  the  people  and veto  all  special                                                                    
interest groups.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Representative   Merrick  referred   to  the   term  special                                                                    
interest group. She asked who Mr. Barcus was referring to.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Mr.  Barcus thought  there were  three different  groups who                                                                    
had weighed  in on using funds  from the PFD. He  would have                                                                    
to go back to look at  the information. He knew the dividend                                                                    
had  been used  to  make up  for losses  in  the budget.  He                                                                    
believed the people  should decide where the  money went. He                                                                    
stated that  the reductions  to the  PFD by  former Governor                                                                    
Walker had hurt many people.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Johnston  noted   that  Representative  Knopp  and                                                                    
Representative LeBon had joined the meeting.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
5:10:05 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
DAVE MAXWELL,  SELF, PALMER (via  teleconference), testified                                                                    
against the  bills. He  stated that  the governor  had tried                                                                    
the previous year. He stated  that there was a recall effort                                                                    
and he  asked for what.  He stated  that the issue  was more                                                                    
volatile  because  oil prices  had  declined  and would  not                                                                    
sustain  the state.  Additionally,  the  stock market  would                                                                    
currently not  grow the  Permanent Fund.  He shared  that as                                                                    
responsible people, he  and his wife had  their children put                                                                    
money  away in  a  savings account  to  use responsibly.  He                                                                    
thought the  governor's actions  represented responsibility.                                                                    
He   emphasized  that   the  governor's   actions  had   not                                                                    
threatened any  legislators or  agencies the  previous year.                                                                    
He viewed  it as  responsible action.  He thought  the bills                                                                    
tried  to make  up for  the irresponsibility  placed on  the                                                                    
governor the previous year.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Johnston redirected the topic to the bills.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
5:13:31 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
RICHARD WAGNER, SELF,  FAIRBANKS (via teleconference), spoke                                                                    
in opposition to  the bills. He stated  that the legislature                                                                    
and the former governor had been  trying to dip into the PFD                                                                    
portion of the budget and to take  away the PFD to do so. He                                                                    
did  not  support efforts  to  take  away the  dividend.  He                                                                    
recalled that when the Permanent  Fund had been established,                                                                    
the  portion allotted  to the  PFD  was not  supposed to  be                                                                    
touched unless the legislature got  rid of the dividend with                                                                    
a  minimum  two-thirds  vote.  He  added  that  the  reserve                                                                    
account  was meant  for emergencies.  He  remarked that  the                                                                    
passage  of SB  21  [oil tax  reform  legislation passed  in                                                                    
2013] had  taken billions of  dollars away from  the state's                                                                    
budget.  He  spoke  in  opposition to  the  oil  tax  regime                                                                    
established  under  SB 21.  He  stressed  that the  people's                                                                    
portion of the dividend should not be touched.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
5:16:13 PM                                                                                                                    
AT EASE                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
5:16:39 PM                                                                                                                    
RECONVENED                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
PENCIA BEATON,  SELF, ANCHORAGE (via  teleconference), spoke                                                                    
in opposition  to the bills.  She believed  most legislators                                                                    
were in office by defrauding  the people by saying they were                                                                    
something  they  were  not. She  stressed  that  legislators                                                                    
represented the  people. She emphasized  that the  PFD money                                                                    
belonged to  the people. She  wanted her mineral  rights and                                                                    
the  interest  on  the  PFD  that  was  "stolen"  by  former                                                                    
Governor  Walker.   She  thought  special   interest  groups                                                                    
including unions and nonprofits were taking the money.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
5:18:28 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
AFIA  KUZMAN,  SELF,  DELTA JUNCTION  (via  teleconference),                                                                    
spoke against HB 306. She  believed it was inappropriate for                                                                    
the  legislature to  change the  50/50 split  to 20/80.  She                                                                    
stated  that   families  used  the  funding   to  buy  food,                                                                    
clothing, fuel, and  to help the poor. She  wanted the issue                                                                    
to be put to a vote by the citizens of Alaska.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
5:19:41 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
VIRINIA KUZMIN,  SELF, DELTA JUNCTION  (via teleconference),                                                                    
she  did not  support HB  306. She  shared that  she was  13                                                                    
years old  and saved her PFDs  to start her adult  life when                                                                    
she turned 18.  She felt that lowering  the percentage share                                                                    
for the PFD was unfair. She  thought the issue should be put                                                                    
to a vote.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
5:20:43 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MICHELLE  LEBLANC,  SELF,  ANCHORAGE  (via  teleconference),                                                                    
opposed  the   bills.  She  shared  information   about  her                                                                    
Athabascan and Inupiat  background. She believed legislators                                                                    
had  been breaking  laws by  having secret  meetings and  by                                                                    
stealing the  peoples' PFDs. She  spoke against  the justice                                                                    
system  that   had  upheld  the  lawmakers'   thievery.  She                                                                    
believed those  involved were elitists who  believed regular                                                                    
people were  not intelligent enough  to handle  their money.                                                                    
She  elaborated  that  they   believed  people  like  Alaska                                                                    
Natives were  wasting their money  on drugs and  alcohol and                                                                    
other  foolish  things  they  did not  need,  which  is  why                                                                    
lawmakers thought they  had the right to steal  the PFD. She                                                                    
stated  that legislators  were not  considering the  cost of                                                                    
food, transportation,  fuel, and other essential  needs. She                                                                    
stated that former Governor Jay  Hammond had established the                                                                    
PFD for  the people. She  concluded that with  the exception                                                                    
of a  few legislators,  they were  using the  people's money                                                                    
for special interests.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
5:23:35 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
DON STEVENS, SELF, FAIRBANKS  (via teleconference), spoke in                                                                    
opposition  to  the  bills. He  remarked  that  people  were                                                                    
always speaking negatively against  Native Alaskans who were                                                                    
the minority in the state. He  shared that he and his family                                                                    
used the PFD for food and  gas. He highlighted the high cost                                                                    
of transportation  and heating  in rural Alaska.  He thought                                                                    
many people did  not understand the issue  and thought rural                                                                    
residents were  using the  money for  alcohol and  drugs. He                                                                    
disputed the claim  and shared that he used  the funding for                                                                    
food, fuel, and  other essential items. He  detailed that he                                                                    
was a  subsistence user and he  used money from the  PFD for                                                                    
gas  for  fishing,  food, and  airfare.  He  reiterated  his                                                                    
opposition  taking  the  PFD.   He  noted  there  was  other                                                                    
resources the legislature could tap  such as gas. He thanked                                                                    
the committee for its time.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
5:26:25 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
YUNIA  KUZMIN, SELF,  DELTA  JUNCTION (via  teleconference),                                                                    
testified in opposition  to HB 306. She shared  that she was                                                                    
15  years old.  She felt  it was  unfair to  change the  PFD                                                                    
percentage  from 50/50  to 20/80.  She  explained that  many                                                                    
people  used  the funding  to  support  their families.  Her                                                                    
family used  the funding to  purchase food, clothes,  and to                                                                    
pay bills. She asked the  legislature to let the people vote                                                                    
on the issue. She thanked the committee.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
5:27:11 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
FRANK  BAUER,   SELF,  HOMER  (via   teleconference),  spoke                                                                    
against the  bills. He spoke  against increasing  the amount                                                                    
the state could  spend from the Permanent Fund.  He was also                                                                    
opposed to income or sales  taxes because he did not believe                                                                    
the  changes  would solve  the  state's  budget problem.  He                                                                    
stated   that  the   taxes  had   not  solved   the  federal                                                                    
government's or  other states' budget problems.  He stressed                                                                    
that it was not possible  to solve a problem without knowing                                                                    
what the  problem was.  He thought the  state was  in denial                                                                    
about its spending problem;  therefore, the problem remained                                                                    
from year  to year. He stated  that except in the  case of a                                                                    
catastrophic event,  there was  no such  thing as  a revenue                                                                    
problem  because  everyone, including  government,  received                                                                    
their income from  the same economic source.  He opined that                                                                    
whenever government  tried to  solve problems  by increasing                                                                    
revenue,  the problems  were pushed  onto the  people, which                                                                    
meant  residents   had  to  cut  spending.   He  stated  the                                                                    
situation had  a negative impact on  business, which reduced                                                                    
government  revenue in  the next  fiscal year.  He explained                                                                    
that the problem was cyclical.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
5:29:39 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
KAREN PERRY,  SELF, CHUGIAK (via  teleconference), testified                                                                    
against  the bills.  She thanked  Representative Tilton  for                                                                    
standing strong  on PFD issues.  She provided detail  on her                                                                    
history in  Alaska. She was  vehemently opposed  to changing                                                                    
the  statutory PFD  from  a  50/50 split  to  80/20 with  80                                                                    
percent going to increase the  size and scope of government.                                                                    
She believed any  change to the formula should go  to a vote                                                                    
of the people as per  the state's constitution. She stressed                                                                    
that all government originated with  the people. She thought                                                                    
some legislators  chose to grow  government on the  backs of                                                                    
people.  She underscored  that taking  the PFD  was stealing                                                                    
from  children.  She believed  taking  the  PFD was  ruining                                                                    
small businesses and breaking the law.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
5:32:15 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
SIVERIAN KUZMIN, SELF,  DELTA JUNCTION (via teleconference),                                                                    
testified against HB  306. He did not support  the change to                                                                    
the PFD formula  and believed it was the  peoples' money. He                                                                    
thanked the committee.  He thought the issue should  go to a                                                                    
vote.                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
5:33:09 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MELISSA GUDOBBA,  SELF, WASILLA (via  teleconference), spoke                                                                    
in opposition to the bills.  She thought the legislature was                                                                    
breaking  the law  and constitution.  She stressed  that the                                                                    
people needed the money now  more than ever. She stated that                                                                    
the  people  did not  need  legislators  to dip  into  their                                                                    
pockets and  say they  could budget  better. She  thought it                                                                    
was  socialism. She  did not  believe  the state's  children                                                                    
should   experience  the   hardships  the   legislature  was                                                                    
bringing. She  supported budget cuts.  She shared  that when                                                                    
her family budget was tight,  she cut spending. She believed                                                                    
the government needed to do the same thing.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Johnston noted the meeting  would reconvene at 6:00                                                                    
p.m.                                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
5:34:59 PM                                                                                                                    
AT EASE                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
6:02:19 PM                                                                                                                    
RECONVENED                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
JONATHAN  GORDAOFF,  SELF,   WASILLA  (via  teleconference),                                                                    
opposed the  bills. He thought  the legislators  were crooks                                                                    
and  were stealing  from his  family. He  thought they  were                                                                    
trying  very hard  to  steal the  money.  He challenged  the                                                                    
legislature to  put the issue  to a  vote of the  people. He                                                                    
stressed that  the money belonged  to Alaskans.  He believed                                                                    
the overspending was ridiculous.  He stated that legislators                                                                    
would be fired if they worked for a private company.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
6:04:12 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
TRISH    WAGNER    MIKOLAJCZK,    SELF,    FAIRBANKS    (via                                                                    
teleconference), testified  in opposition to the  bills. She                                                                    
shared information about her  personal background. She asked                                                                    
what the  bills were funding.  She asked if the  bills would                                                                    
take 80 percent of the Permanent Fund.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Johnston clarified that  the bills pertained to the                                                                    
structured  draw  from  the  Permanent  Fund  that  went  to                                                                    
funding the dividend and state services.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Mikolajczk  did not know  who in office  kept destroying                                                                    
the people's  money from the state's  natural resources. She                                                                    
shared  that  she  had  reviewed   the  Alaska's  Clear  and                                                                    
Equitable  Share  (ACES)  regime  enacted  under  the  Palin                                                                    
administration.  She stated  that unfortunately  legislators                                                                    
did not stick with ACES and  wanted to be bought and paid by                                                                    
big  oil.  She  remarked  that   the  state  had  given  oil                                                                    
companies over $2 billion per year  under SB 21. She did not                                                                    
want to give  anymore of the PFD away  for unethical things.                                                                    
She  stated the  PFD  was established  for  the people.  She                                                                    
thought fixing SB  21 would solve the  problem. She believed                                                                    
using the  Permanent Fund was  never supposed to  go towards                                                                    
funding  government.  She stated  that  funds  should go  to                                                                    
Alaskans  for  the  next   generation.  She  reiterated  her                                                                    
opposition to the bills.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Johnston recessed the meeting until 6:30 p.m.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
6:08:01 PM                                                                                                                    
AT EASE                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
6:29:03 PM                                                                                                                    
RECONVENED                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
BARBARA   MELLAND,  SELF,   WASILLA  (via   teleconference),                                                                    
opposed  the bills.  She shared  history about  her personal                                                                    
background in  Alaska. She relayed  that she had  filled out                                                                    
her PFD application the previous  evening and almost 500,000                                                                    
people  had  applied.  She wondered  if  the  committee  was                                                                    
considering the vast  number of people who  were counting on                                                                    
the PFD.  She stressed  that everyone  she knew  was unhappy                                                                    
about  the 80/20  split proposal.  She believed  legislators                                                                    
did not care what the  people thought. She was unhappy about                                                                    
the situation.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
6:30:28 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
RON  BERNIER,  SELF,   MEADOW  LAKES  (via  teleconference),                                                                    
testified against the bills. He  shared that he and his wife                                                                    
had  nine children  and his  family  relied on  the PFD  for                                                                    
college  savings, to  start businesses  for their  children,                                                                    
and  other.  He stated  that  if  they would  have  received                                                                    
$62,194 in the last few years  if the PFD had not been taken                                                                    
from his family.  He stated that all Alaskans  relied on the                                                                    
PFD. He reiterated his opposition to the bills.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
6:31:50 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
SARAHANN   JACKSON,  SELF,   JUNEAU  (via   teleconference),                                                                    
strongly opposed the bills. She  was appalled that the issue                                                                    
kept  coming  up.  She  underscored   that  the  public  had                                                                    
repeatedly called in to testify  against taking the PFD. She                                                                    
stressed that the  PFD was not the  legislature's money. She                                                                    
stated  it  was  a  clown  show.  She  emphasized  that  the                                                                    
legislators  would  not  wear   the  people  down.  She  was                                                                    
finished  with   the  crazy   thing  legislators   called  a                                                                    
government. She chided the legislature for its actions.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
6:34:06 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
DAVID  NEES, SELF,  ANCHORAGE (via  teleconference), thanked                                                                    
the  committee   for  putting  the  bills   out  for  public                                                                    
testimony. He observed that the  majority of testifiers were                                                                    
not  in favor  of the  bills. He  hoped the  committee would                                                                    
consider  that   information.  He   remarked  that   if  the                                                                    
legislature passed  the two bills  it would have  the option                                                                    
of ignoring  them like it  had ignored the current  laws. He                                                                    
thought  the  proposals  were   interesting  and  should  be                                                                    
debated. He  highlighted that  testimony indicated  that the                                                                    
bills  should   not  make  it   further  than   the  current                                                                    
committee. He  pointed out that  for the purpose  of meeting                                                                    
decorum it  was disrespectful to the  public testifiers when                                                                    
committee members  were looking  at their phones  during the                                                                    
meeting.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Representative Merrick asked what  Mr. Nees's ideal scenario                                                                    
would be for the Permanent Fund.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Nees  believed the  state should probably  go back  to a                                                                    
50/50  model  as  under  former  Governor  Jay  Hammond.  He                                                                    
supported  putting the  issue to  a vote  of the  people. He                                                                    
stated that the  people had spoken once before  on the issue                                                                    
and  it  had been  clear  the  people believed  the  private                                                                    
sector  was the  best use  of the  fund. He  noted that  the                                                                    
private  sector was  suffering because  it had  done without                                                                    
for  a  while.  He   suggested  concentrating  on  the  core                                                                    
mission.  He explained  that  if the  mission  could not  be                                                                    
delivered "for what we have," the  state would be in a great                                                                    
deal of  trouble if the price  of oil continued to  drop. He                                                                    
highlighted  that   when  the  stock  market   dropped,  the                                                                    
Permanent Fund  corpus did  not earn  as much.  He preferred                                                                    
the 50/50 split. He suggested  defining the core mission for                                                                    
services - there were many  state services that had not been                                                                    
provided 50 years earlier.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Representative Merrick asked if it  would be possible to get                                                                    
to a 50/50 split through  cuts in the budget. Alternatively,                                                                    
she wondered  if Mr. Nees  thought it would  require raising                                                                    
revenue through taxes or another source.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Nees  believed it was  likely a combination of  both. He                                                                    
believed  the  biggest problem  was  there  were not  enough                                                                    
people  in the  state generating  enough income  to pay  the                                                                    
state's  bills  being produced.  He  explained  it would  be                                                                    
necessary to tax  each resident $17,000 to keep  up with the                                                                    
spending. He  thought that even  if spending were  cut there                                                                    
would continue  to be  a big load  to carry.  He recommended                                                                    
refocusing  on   the  state's  core  mission   in  terms  of                                                                    
delivering services.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
6:37:55 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
GREG  WEAVER, SELF,  WASILLA  (via teleconference),  opposed                                                                    
the bills. He shared that  he was disabled, and his workers'                                                                    
compensation case had taken 6.5  years to get to the supreme                                                                    
court. He  appreciated Governor Dunleavy. He  was frustrated                                                                    
watching lawmakers  in Juneau arguing matters  that were not                                                                    
of concern  to anyone. He  seriously objected to  the bills.                                                                    
He wished most  of the committees were headed  by people who                                                                    
were on the  road system. He wanted to see  the capital move                                                                    
to the road system.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
6:40:57 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
NEIL KUZMIN,  SELF, DELTANA (via  teleconference), testified                                                                    
against  HB 306.  He  shared that  he is  15  years old.  He                                                                    
relayed that his parents had not  been able to afford to pay                                                                    
bills based  on the PFD  amount provided the  previous year.                                                                    
He detailed that his family  was in the fishing industry. He                                                                    
was faced with missing school to go fishing.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
6:41:58 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
KURT  SCHMIDT, SELF,  DELTA  JUNCTION (via  teleconference),                                                                    
opposed  HB   306.  He  remarked  that   the  representative                                                                    
government was  supposed to take  care of the people  of the                                                                    
state.  He  shared that  his  representative  had his  staff                                                                    
taken  away and  he had  a difficult  time reaching  him. He                                                                    
reported that  HB 306  would take  away resources  that many                                                                    
Alaskans  had understood  to be  a part  of. He  highlighted                                                                    
that  the PFD  was a  substantial contributor  to the  state                                                                    
economy. He  thought continued  spending by  the legislature                                                                    
was  irresponsible.  He  stated that  withholding  resources                                                                    
from  the state  economy  was crippling  to rural  villages,                                                                    
small businesses on  the road system, and  many families. He                                                                    
thought state  spending should be  cut back. He  thought any                                                                    
change to the  percentage allocated to the PFD  should go to                                                                    
a vote of  the people. He remarked that  the proposed change                                                                    
to  the PFD  did not  reflect representative  government. He                                                                    
spoke  to  the  silencing  of  various  legislators  by  the                                                                    
Majority.  He did  not trust  the legislature  to make  good                                                                    
decisions.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Representative Wool  asked who Mr.  Schmidt's representative                                                                    
was.                                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Schmidt replied Mike Shower.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Wool asked  if Mr.  Schmidt lived  in Delta,                                                                    
Alaska.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Schmidt replied affirmatively.  He detailed that when he                                                                    
contacted  Senator  Shower  he  did  not  get  an  immediate                                                                    
response as he had in the  past. He had been told by Senator                                                                    
Shower that his number of staff had been cut.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Wool  noted  that  there was  also  a  state                                                                    
representative for the district.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair   Johnston    relayed   the    representative   was                                                                    
Representative George Raucher.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
6:45:46 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
SHERRY EICHENLAUB,  SELF, EAGLE RIVER  (via teleconference),                                                                    
spoke against the bills. She  was very unhappy with what she                                                                    
was  seeing  going on  in  Juneau.  She echoed  comments  by                                                                    
previous testifiers.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
6:46:28 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
STERLING  GALLAGHAR, SELF,  ANCHORAGE (via  teleconference),                                                                    
shared that he  had been the commissioner  of the Department                                                                    
of Revenue under the former  Governor Jay Hammond. He stated                                                                    
that he  had drafted  the Permanent  Fund and  developed the                                                                    
Alaska Permanent  Fund Corporation. He stated  that the idea                                                                    
that the  state did not  have enough money  was "poppycock."                                                                    
He  remarked that  the state's  current  spending was  lower                                                                    
than when  there had  been oil. He  believed it  was because                                                                    
the  state did  not have  any  income tax  or other  similar                                                                    
things.  He shared  that there  had been  an income  tax and                                                                    
severance tax  in the past  that yielded about  $1.3 billion                                                                    
per  year.  He elaborated  that  there  were pots  of  money                                                                    
totaling  $3 billion  to $4  billion that  would enable  the                                                                    
Permanent Fund to be sustained.  For example, the Power Cost                                                                    
Equalization (PCE) Fund contained $1.495 billion.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Gallaghar  suggested having the Permanent  Fund write an                                                                    
annuity contract  to deliver  the $29  million in  PCE funds                                                                    
needed per  year; it  would leave  almost $900  million left                                                                    
over. He thought it would go  a long way towards solving the                                                                    
revenue  problem.  He  stated that  Alaska  Housing  Finance                                                                    
Corporation (AHFC) earned 2.2  percent and Alaska Industrial                                                                    
Development   and  Export   Authority  (AIDEA)   earned  0.3                                                                    
percent. He asked the committee  to make the state work like                                                                    
the  financial  institution  it   was  designed  to  be.  He                                                                    
believed AHFC  and AIDEA  could earn  8 to  10 percent.   He                                                                    
stated that  the funds could increase  earnings. He stressed                                                                    
the need  for legislative follow  up. He discussed  the need                                                                    
to institute  more fixed  income. He  was frustrated  at the                                                                    
legislature  not  using  the  tools  it  had  in  place.  He                                                                    
supported a full PFD.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
6:49:12 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
ALEXANDRA    KUZMIN,     SELF,    DELTA     JUNCTION    (via                                                                    
teleconference),  testified against  the  bills. Her  family                                                                    
depended on fishing for their  livelihood and there had been                                                                    
fewer fish to  catch. Her family worked very hard  to earn a                                                                    
living.  She  shared  that the  oil  industry  had  impacted                                                                    
fishing. Her family  counted on the PFD  because fishing was                                                                    
no longer  as good. She  remarked that her family  paid high                                                                    
taxes and  she did  not support  a cut to  the PFD.  She was                                                                    
against the 80/20 split in HB 306.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Representative Wool asked where the family fished.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Kuzmin replied "Homer."                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Johnston noted  there  were  no additional  people                                                                    
online. She took an "at ease" until 7:00 p.m.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
6:50:46 PM                                                                                                                    
AT EASE                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
7:00:46 PM                                                                                                                    
RECONVENED                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
JENNA STEVENS,  SELF, STEVENS VILLAGE  (via teleconference),                                                                    
testified  against  the  bills.  She  did  not  support  the                                                                    
legislature  using the  PFD.  She shared  that  she lived  a                                                                    
subsistence lifestyle  in rural Alaska  and relied on  a PFD                                                                    
to survive.  She discussed that  the economy was  harsh, and                                                                    
the PFD  was needed. She spoke  to the need to  look out for                                                                    
future generations.  She asked  what they would  teach their                                                                    
children  about  holding  on to  their  cultural  values  as                                                                    
Alaska Native  indigenous people. She shared  that the funds                                                                    
were put back into the  state's economy. Many of the state's                                                                    
villages were  diminishing and people  were having  to leave                                                                    
to  go to  school,  which meant  that  cultural values  were                                                                    
being lost. She thanked the committee for listening.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
7:03:19 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
LINDA  TREMBACK,  SELF,  NORTH  POLE  (via  teleconference),                                                                    
testified  on  HB  306.  She thought  the  issue  should  be                                                                    
brought to  voters for approval.  She shared that she  was a                                                                    
single mom  with an adult  handicapped child who  lived with                                                                    
her  and  two other  children.  She  stressed that  life  in                                                                    
Alaska  was expensive.  She used  her PFDs  for fuel  in the                                                                    
winter. She provided  24-hour care for her  son. She counted                                                                    
on  the funds  and  shared that  she was  not  on any  other                                                                    
assistance. She reiterated  that the issue should  go to the                                                                    
people  for   a  vote.  She  believed   there  was  wasteful                                                                    
government spending that could be improved.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Representative    Carpenter   referenced    Ms.   Tremback's                                                                    
testimony that  she had  a handicapped  child. She  asked if                                                                    
she was happy with state services she had received.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Tremback replied  in the affirmative; it  was the reason                                                                    
she had stayed  in Alaska. She shared that her  son had many                                                                    
different opportunities. She detailed  that he had been born                                                                    
with Down's syndrome.  He was 28 years old and  had a severe                                                                    
seizure  disorder. She  elaborated  that  he needed  24-hour                                                                    
care - he was in diapers  and could not speak. She explained                                                                    
that it  was a tough life  for him. She shared  that she had                                                                    
received recent  approval from the  state to put her  son on                                                                    
CBD oil and he now went days without seizures.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Representative Carpenter stated she was a true saint.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Johnston CLOSED public testimony.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
HB  300  was  HEARD  and   HELD  in  committee  for  further                                                                    
consideration.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
HB  306  was  HEARD  and   HELD  in  committee  for  further                                                                    
consideration.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Johnston  provided the  schedule for  the following                                                                    
day.                                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
ADJOURNMENT                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
7:07:35 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
The meeting was adjourned at 7:07 p.m.                                                                                          

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
HB 306 HB 300 Public Testimony Rec'd by 031220 (2).pdf HFIN 3/12/2020 1:30:00 PM
HB 300
HB 300 HB 306
HB 306
HB 306 HB 300 Public Testimony Rec'd by 031720 (2).pdf HFIN 3/12/2020 1:30:00 PM
HB 300
HB 306