Legislature(2015 - 2016)SENATE FINANCE 532

04/15/2016 04:00 PM CONFERENCE COMMITTEE ON HB256 AND HB257

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04:17:15 PM Start
04:44:22 PM Adjourn
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
HB 256 APPROP: OPERATING BUDGET/LOANS/FUNDS
Heard & Held
HB 257 APPROP: MENTAL HEALTH BUDGET
Heard & Held
Departments:
- Administration
- Commerce, Community & Economic Development
- Corrections
- Education & Early Development
- Fish & Game
- Office of the Governor
- Transportation & Public Facilities
               29TH ALASKA STATE LEGISLATURE                                                                                    
                      SECOND SESSION                                                                                            
          CONFERENCE COMMITTEE ON HB256 and HB257                                                                               
                      April 15, 2016                                                                                            
                         4:17 p.m.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
4:17:15 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
CALL TO ORDER                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Chair Kelly called the Conference Committee meeting on                                                                          
HB256 and HB257 to order at 4:17 p.m                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS PRESENT:                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Senate:                                                                                                                         
Senator Pete Kelly, Chair                                                                                                       
Senator Anna MacKinnon                                                                                                          
Senator Lyman Hoffman                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
House:                                                                                                                          
Representative Mark Neuman, Vice-Chair                                                                                          
Representative Steve Thompson                                                                                                   
Representative Les Gara                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
ALSO PRESENT:                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
David Teal,  Director, Legislative Finance  Division; fiscal                                                                    
analysts  with  the  Office of  Management  and  Budget  and                                                                    
Legislative  Finance   Division;  and  aides   to  committee                                                                    
members and other members of the Legislature.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
SUMMARY                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
HB 256    APPROP: OPERATING BUDGET/LOANS/FUNDS                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
          HB 256 was HEARD and HELD in committee for                                                                            
          further consideration.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
HB 257    APPROP: MENTAL HEALTH BUDGET                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
          HB 257 was HEARD and HELD in committee for                                                                            
          further consideration.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
DEPARTMENTS:                                                                                                                    
     ADMINISTRATION                                                                                                             
     COMMERCE, COMMUNITY AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT                                                                               
     CORRECTIONS                                                                                                                
     EDUCATION AND EARLY DEVELOPMENT                                                                                            
     FISH AND GAME                                                                                                              
     OFFICE OF THE GOVERNOR                                                                                                     
     TRANSPORTATION AND PUBLIC FACILITIES                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 256(FIN)                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     "An  Act making  appropriations for  the operating  and                                                                    
     loan  program  expenses  of state  government  and  for                                                                    
     certain   programs;    capitalizing   funds;   amending                                                                    
     appropriations;   repealing    appropriations;   making                                                                    
     supplemental  appropriations;  and   providing  for  an                                                                    
     effective date."                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
SENATE CS FOR CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 256(FIN)                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
     "An  Act making  appropriations for  the operating  and                                                                    
     loan  program  expenses  of state  government  and  for                                                                    
     certain   programs;    capitalizing   funds;   amending                                                                    
     appropriations;   repealing    appropriations;   making                                                                    
     supplemental  appropriations;  and   providing  for  an                                                                    
     effective date."                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
and                                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 257(FIN)                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     "An  Act making  appropriations for  the operating  and                                                                    
     capital    expenses   of    the   state's    integrated                                                                    
     comprehensive    mental    health    program;    making                                                                    
     supplemental  appropriations;  and   providing  for  an                                                                    
     effective date."                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
SENATE CS FOR CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 257(FIN)                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
     "An  Act making  appropriations for  the operating  and                                                                    
     capital    expenses   of    the   state's    integrated                                                                    
     comprehensive mental health program; and providing for                                                                     
     an effective date."                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
4:17:23 PM                                                                                                                    
AT EASE                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
4:19:00 PM                                                                                                                    
RECONVENED                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
4:19:40 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Chair  Kelly  communicated  that  the  conference  committee                                                                    
would be meeting  on HB 256 and HB 257  open items. He noted                                                                    
that Limited Powers  of Free Conference had  been granted by                                                                    
both the Senate  and the House. Departments  with open items                                                                    
would be taken up based  on the motion sheets distributed to                                                                    
members earlier in the day and dated April 15, 2016.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
ADMINISTRATION                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Vice-Chair Neuman MOVED to  ADOPT the Chair's recommendation                                                                    
on   the    following   items   for   the    Department   of                                                                    
Administration's budget:                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
     Item 1    House for both motions                                                                                           
     Item 2    Senate for both motions                                                                                          
     Item 3    House                                                                                                            
     Item 4    Senate                                                                                                           
     Item 5    House                                                                                                            
     Item 6    Senate for both motions                                                                                          
     Item 7    House                                                                                                            
     Item 8    House                                                                                                            
     Item 9    Senate                                                                                                           
     Item 10   Senate                                                                                                           
     Item 11   Senate                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Gara  OBJECTED. He  looked  at  Item 1,  and                                                                    
surmised  that one  deputy commissioner  is not  eliminated.                                                                    
Chair Kelly agreed.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Representative Gara looked  at Item 5, and  assumed that the                                                                    
House provided no funding for the Anchorage office lease.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
4:21:31 PM                                                                                                                    
AT EASE                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
4:21:58 PM                                                                                                                    
RECONVENED                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
JAMES ARMSTRONG,  STAFF, SENATOR  PETE KELLY  explained that                                                                    
under Item  5, the Senate  provided intent language  and the                                                                    
House  provided no  intent language.  He  stressed that  the                                                                    
committee  would not  be adopted  the intent  language under                                                                    
Item 5.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Representative Gara looked  at Items 7 through  9, and asked                                                                    
to have time to look over the sheet.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
4:23:01 PM                                                                                                                    
AT EASE                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
4:23:13 PM                                                                                                                    
RECONVENED                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
4:23:16 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Gara  OBJECTED  to   Item  9,  which  was  a                                                                    
reduction to  public television funding from  the Governor's                                                                    
budget request by $600,000.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Chair Kelly wondered  if there was any objection  to Items 1                                                                    
through 11, excluding Item 9.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Representative Gara requested an  explanation of Item 9. Mr.                                                                    
Armstrong  explained that  Items 7  and 8  fully funded  the                                                                    
governor's  request for  public radio,  but Item  9 did  not                                                                    
fund the television portion of the governor's request.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Gara  expressed  concern with  Item  9,  but                                                                    
WITHDREW the OBJECTION.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
There being  NO further  OBJECTION, it  was so  ordered. The                                                                    
action closed all conferencable items  in the budget for the                                                                    
Department of Administration's budget.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
4:24:43 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
DEPARMENT OF COMMERCE, COMMUNITY, AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Vice-Chair Neuman MOVED to  ADOPT the Chair's recommendation                                                                    
on  the  following items  for  the  Department of  Commerce,                                                                    
Community and Economic Development's budget:                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
     Item 1    House                                                                                                            
     Item 2    Hold                                                                                                             
     Item 3    Hold                                                                                                             
     Item 4    Senate                                                                                                           
     Item 5    House for both motions                                                                                           
     Item 6    Hold                                                                                                             
     Item 7    Hold                                                                                                             
     Item 8    Hold                                                                                                             
     Item 9    Hold                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Chair  Kelly offered  an "at  ease", so  Representative Gara                                                                    
could look over the  paperwork. Representative Gara declined                                                                    
the request.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
There being NO OBJECTION, it was  so ordered. Items 2, 3, 6,                                                                    
7,  8 and  9 remain  open  for the  Department of  Commerce,                                                                    
Community and Economic Development's budget.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
4:25:57 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Vice-Chair Neuman MOVED to  ADOPT the Chair's recommendation                                                                    
on the  following items for  the Department  of Correction's                                                                    
budget:                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
     Item 1    Senate                                                                                                           
     Item 2    House                                                                                                            
     Item 3    House for both motions                                                                                           
     Item 4    House                                                                                                            
     Item 5    House                                                                                                            
     Item 6    House                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
There  being NO  OBJECTION, it  was so  ordered. The  action                                                                    
closed  all  conferencable  items  in  the  budget  for  the                                                                    
Department of Corrections.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
4:26:43 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION AND EARLY DEVELOPMENT                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Vice-Chair Neuman MOVED to  ADOPT the Chair's recommendation                                                                    
on the following  items for the Department  of Education and                                                                    
Early Development's budget:                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     Item 1    House                                                                                                            
     Item 2    Senate                                                                                                           
     Item 3    House                                                                                                            
     Item 4    Senate                                                                                                           
     Item 5    House                                                                                                            
     Item 6    Senate                                                                                                           
     Item 7    Senate                                                                                                           
     Item 8    Senate                                                                                                           
     Item 9    Senate                                                                                                           
     Item 10   Senate plus $240 thousand                                                                                        
     Item 11   Senate plus $240 thousand                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Gara OBJECTED.  He  queried the  explanation                                                                    
for Items  10 and 11.  He assumed Items  10 and 11  were not                                                                    
the full Senate cuts. Chair Kelly agreed.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Representative Gara assumed  that Items 10 and  11 were one-                                                                    
half of the Senate cuts. Chair Kelly agreed.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Gara   looked  at  Item  8,   and  requested                                                                    
explanation  of  the  technical  adjustment.  Mr.  Armstrong                                                                    
replied  that   Item  8  was   a  recommendation   from  the                                                                    
Legislative  Finance  Division  (LFD), because  the  House's                                                                    
request was  composed incorrectly.  He deferred to  Mr. Teal                                                                    
for further information.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Representative Gara wanted to ensure  that Item 8 was only a                                                                    
technical change. Mr. Teal indicated in the affirmative.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
4:28:25 PM                                                                                                                    
AT EASE                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
4:29:13 PM                                                                                                                    
RECONVENED                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
4:29:16 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative Gara  stressed that he only  had an objection                                                                    
to  Item 5.  He disagreed  with the  choice to  eliminate $7                                                                    
million of pre-K grants, plus  the elimination of the Senate                                                                    
restoration of  Parents as Teachers and  Best Beginnings. He                                                                    
felt  that  the Pre-K  programs  were  necessary for  school                                                                    
preparedness and an educated workforce.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Chair Kelly announced that there would be a vote on Item 5.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
4:30:50 PM                                                                                                                    
AT EASE                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
4:30:58 PM                                                                                                                    
RECONVENED                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
4:31:03 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Chair Kelly announced that the vote would be to accept the                                                                      
House numbers for Item 5.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Representative Gara MAINTAINED his OBJECTION to Item 5.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
A roll call vote was taken on the motion.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
IN FAVOR: Hoffman, Kelly, Neuman, MacKinnon, Thompson                                                                           
OPPOSED: Gara                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
The MOTION PASSED (5/1), There being No further OBJECTION,                                                                      
Item 5 was ADOPTED.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
There being NO further OBJECTION, it was so ordered. The                                                                        
action closed all conferencable items in the budget for the                                                                     
Department of Education and Early Development.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
4:32:19 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
DEPARTMENT OF FISH AND GAME                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Vice-Chair Neuman MOVED to ADOPT the Chair's recommendation                                                                     
on the following items for the Department of Fish and Game                                                                      
budget:                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
     Item 1    Senate                                                                                                           
     Item 2    Senate                                                                                                           
     Item 3    Senate                                                                                                           
     Item 4    Senate                                                                                                           
     Item 5    Senate                                                                                                           
     Item 6    Senate                                                                                                           
     Item 7    Senate                                                                                                           
     Item 8    Senate plus $200 thousand                                                                                        
     Item 9    Senate                                                                                                           
     Item 10   House for both motions                                                                                           
     Item 11   Senate for both motions                                                                                          
     Item 12   Senate                                                                                                           
     Item 13   Senate                                                                                                           
     Item 14   House for both motions                                                                                           
     Item 15   House                                                                                                            
     Item 16   House                                                                                                            
     Item 17   House                                                                                                            
     Item 18   Senate                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
4:33:19 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Gara OBJECTED  to Item  8. He  remarked that                                                                    
there was a $200,000 greater  cut from the House request. He                                                                    
stressed that it was a  general cut to Commercial Fisheries.                                                                    
He  announced that  a  $400,000 cut  would  have a  negative                                                                    
impact on  the Commercial Fisheries section.  He appreciated                                                                    
that  $200,000 was  a greater  cut, but  he objected  to the                                                                    
greater decreased funding.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
4:34:05 PM                                                                                                                    
AT EASE                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
4:34:21 PM                                                                                                                    
RECONVENED                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
4:34:27 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Chair  Kelly  wondered  if   there  were  other  objections.                                                                    
Representative Gara responded that he  did not object to any                                                                    
other items.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative Gara  MAINTAINED his OBJECTION to  Item 8. He                                                                    
stated  that  he  would examine  the  difference  between  a                                                                    
$200,000  and $400,000  cut to  the Department  of Fish  and                                                                    
Game (DFG).                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
A roll call vote was taken on the motion.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
IN FAVOR: Kelly, Neuman, MacKinnon, Thompson, Hoffman                                                                           
OPPOSED: Gara                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
The MOTION  PASSED (5/1). There  being NO  further OBJECTION                                                                    
Item 8 was ADOPTED.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
There  being NO  OBJECTION, it  was so  ordered. The  action                                                                    
closed  all  conferencable  items  in  the  budget  for  the                                                                    
Department of Fish and Game.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
4:35:48 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
OFFICE OF THE GOVERNOR                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Vice-Chair Neuman MOVED to  ADOPT the Chair's recommendation                                                                    
on the following  items for the Department of  Office of the                                                                    
Governor budget:                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     Item 1    Senate                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Representative Gara  OBJECTED for DISCUSSION.  Mr. Armstrong                                                                    
explained  that  there  was   an  amendment  in  the  Senate                                                                    
version,  which  deleted  eight positions  throughout  every                                                                    
agency. The intent  language was added to the  Office of the                                                                    
Governor to consolidate the duties and services.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Representative Gara  surmised that there were  no additional                                                                    
cuts in either version. Chair Kelly agreed.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Representative Gara  WITHDREW the OBJECTION. There  being NO                                                                    
further OBJECTION, it was so  ordered. The action closed all                                                                    
conferencable  items in  the budget  for the  Office of  the                                                                    
Governor.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
4:37:00 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION AND PUBLIC FACILITIES                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Vice-Chair Neuman MOVED to  ADOPT the Chair's recommendation                                                                    
on the following items for  the Department of Transportation                                                                    
and Public Facilities budget:                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
     Item 1    House                                                                                                            
     Item 2    House                                                                                                            
     Item 3    Senate for both motions                                                                                          
     Item 4    House                                                                                                            
     Item 5    House                                                                                                            
     Item 6    Senate for both motions                                                                                          
     Item 7    Senate                                                                                                           
     Item 8    Senate                                                                                                           
     Item 9    Senate                                                                                                           
     Item 10   Senate                                                                                                           
     Item 11   Senate                                                                                                           
     Item 12   Senate                                                                                                           
     Item 13   Senate                                                                                                           
     Item 14   Hold                                                                                                             
     Item 15   Hold                                                                                                             
     Item 16   Hold                                                                                                             
     Item 17   House                                                                                                            
     Item 18   Senate                                                                                                           
     Item 19   Senate for both motions                                                                                          
     Item 20   Senate                                                                                                           
     Item 21   House                                                                                                            
     Item 22   Senate                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
4:38:17 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Gara OBJECTED  for DISCUSSION.  He requested                                                                    
that  Item 18  remain open,  and he  also held  objection to                                                                    
Items 19 and 20.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
4:38:47 PM                                                                                                                    
AT EASE                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
4:39:50 PM                                                                                                                    
RECONVENED                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
4:39:54 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Chair  Kelly  announced that  Item  18  would be  held,  and                                                                    
objections Items 19 and 20 would be maintained.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Gara maintained  his objection  to items  19                                                                    
and 20.  He stated that the  House had used $2  million, and                                                                    
the Senate proposed  use of $6 million in order  to fund the                                                                    
Alaska Marine Highway  System. He felt that the  used of the                                                                    
Marine  Highway  Fund would  deplete  the  fund balance  too                                                                    
greatly. He urged the committee  to use $2 million, in order                                                                    
to keep the integrity of the  system for those who depend on                                                                    
the Marine Highway.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
4:40:54 PM                                                                                                                    
AT EASE                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
4:41:35 PM                                                                                                                    
RECONVENED                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
4:41:38 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Vice-Chair Neuman stated that Item 18 would be held.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair MacKinnon  explained that  there was  currently $12                                                                    
million  in  the  Marine Highway  Fund.  The  request  would                                                                    
reduce the fund to $6 million,  which she felt was a healthy                                                                    
sum of money.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Representative Gara felt  that cutting the fund  by half was                                                                    
too great of a cut.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Representative Gara MAINTAINED his OBJECTION to Item 19.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
A roll call vote was taken on the motion.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
IN FAVOR: Kelly, Neuman, MacKinnon, Thompson, Hoffman                                                                           
OPPOSED: Gara                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
The MOTION  PASSED, There being  NO further  OBJECTION, Item                                                                    
19 was adopted.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Representative Gara MAINTAINED his OBJECTION to Item 20.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
A roll call vote was taken on the motion.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
IN FAVOR: Neuman, MacKinnon, Thompson, Hoffman, Kelly                                                                           
OPPOSED: Gara                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
The MOTION  PASSED. There  being NO  OBJECTION, Item  19 was                                                                    
ADOPTED.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
There being NO  OBJECTION, it was so ordered.  Items 14, 15,                                                                    
16,  and  18   will  remain  open  for   the  Department  of                                                                    
Transportation and Public Facilities' budget.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Chair Kelly relayed  that the next meeting would  be held on                                                                    
Saturday, April 16th at 4:00 p.m.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
HB  256  was  HEARD  and   HELD  in  committee  for  further                                                                    
consideration.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
HB  257  was  HEARD  and   HELD  in  committee  for  further                                                                    
consideration.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
ADJOURNMENT                                                                                                                   
4:44:22 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
The meeting was adjourned at 4:44 p.m.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                

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