Legislature(1999 - 2000)

04/07/1999 01:27 PM JUD

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
txt
         HOUSE JUDICIARY STANDING COMMITTEE                                                                                     
                   April 7, 1999                                                                                                
                     1:27 p.m.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Representative Pete Kott, Chairman                                                                                              
Representative Joe Green                                                                                                        
Representative Norman Rokeberg                                                                                                  
Representative Jeannette James                                                                                                  
Representative Lisa Murkowski                                                                                                   
Representative Eric Croft                                                                                                       
Representative Beth Kerttula                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
All members present                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
* HOUSE BILL NO. 34                                                                                                             
"An Act relating to the crime of misprision of a crime against a                                                                
child."                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
     - HEARD AND HELD; ASSIGNED TO SUBCOMMITTEE                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 57                                                                                                               
"An Act relating to immunity for certain claims against the state,                                                              
a municipality, or agents, officers, or employees of either,                                                                    
arising out of or in connection with the year 2000 date change; and                                                             
providing for an effective date."                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     - HEARD AND HELD                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
* HOUSE BILL NO. 151                                                                                                            
"An Act relating to revocation and reinstatement of the driver's                                                                
license of a person at least 14 but not yet 21 years of age."                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
     - TABLED                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 108                                                                                                              
"An Act relating to the use, operation, and regulation of boats;                                                                
establishing a uniform state waterway marking system; and providing                                                             
for an effective date."                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
     - HEARD AND HELD                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
* HOUSE BILL NO. 99                                                                                                             
"An Act relating to sexual assault and the definitions of 'sexual                                                               
contact,' 'sexual penetration,' and 'legal guardian' in AS 11."                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
     - SCHEDULED BUT NOT HEARD                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 79                                                                                                               
"An Act relating to letters of credit under the Uniform Commercial                                                              
Code; and providing for an effective date."                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     - SCHEDULED BUT NOT HEARD                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
(* First public hearing)                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
PREVIOUS ACTION                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
BILL: HB  34                                                                                                                    
SHORT TITLE: REPORTING CRIMES AGAINST CHILDREN                                                                                  
SPONSOR(S): REPRESENTATIVES(S) DYSON                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Jrn-Date    Jrn-Page           Action                                                                                           
 1/19/99        27     (H)  PREFILE RELEASED 1/8/99                                                                             
 1/19/99        27     (H)  READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRAL(S)                                                                   
 1/19/99        27     (H)  JUDICIARY                                                                                           
 4/07/99               (H)  JUD AT  1:00 PM CAPITOL 120                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
BILL: HB  57                                                                                                                    
SHORT TITLE: STATE & MUNI IMMUNITY FOR Y2K                                                                                      
SPONSOR(S): RULES BY REQUEST OF THE GOVERNOR                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Jrn-Date    Jrn-Page           Action                                                                                           
 1/22/99        64     (H)  READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRAL(S)                                                                   
 1/22/99        64     (H)  CRA, JUDICIARY                                                                                      
 1/22/99        64     (H)  ZERO FISCAL NOTE (ADM)                                                                              
 1/22/99        64     (H)  GOVERNOR'S TRANSMITTAL LETTER                                                                       
 2/04/99               (H)  CRA AT  8:00 AM CAPITOL 124                                                                         
 2/04/99               (H)  MOVED OUT OF COMMITEE                                                                               
 2/04/99               (H)  MINUTE(CRA)                                                                                         
 2/05/99       142     (H)  CRA RPT  5DP 1NR                                                                                    
 2/05/99       142     (H)  DP: DYSON, MORGAN, HARRIS, MURKOWSKI,                                                               
 2/05/99       142     (H)  HALCRO; NR: KOOKESH                                                                                 
 2/05/99       142     (H)  ZERO FISCAL NOTE (ADM) 1/22/99                                                                      
 2/05/99       142     (H)  REFERRED TO JUDICIARY                                                                               
 3/15/99               (H)  JUD AT  1:00 PM CAPITOL 120                                                                         
 3/15/99               (H)  HEARD AND HELD                                                                                      
 3/15/99               (H)  MINUTE(JUD)                                                                                         
 3/17/99               (H)  JUD AT  1:00 PM CAPITOL 120                                                                         
 3/17/99               (H)  MOVED CSHB 57(JUD) OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                 
 3/17/99               (H)  MINUTE(JUD)                                                                                         
 4/07/99               (H)  JUD AT  1:00 PM CAPITOL 120                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
BILL: HB 151                                                                                                                    
SHORT TITLE: REVOCATION OF MINOR DRIVER'S LICENSE                                                                               
SPONSOR(S): REPRESENTATIVES(S) KOTT, Austerman                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Jrn-Date    Jrn-Page           Action                                                                                           
 3/22/99       531     (H)  READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRAL(S)                                                                   
 3/22/99       531     (H)  JUD                                                                                                 
 3/24/99       562     (H)  COSPONSOR(S): AUSTERMAN                                                                             
 3/29/99               (H)  JUD AT  1:00 PM CAPITOL 120                                                                         
 3/29/99               (H)  SCHEDULED BUT NOT HEARD                                                                             
 4/07/99               (H)  JUD AT  1:00 PM CAPITOL 120                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
BILL: HB 108                                                                                                                    
SHORT TITLE: USE, REGULATION, AND OPERATION OF BOATS                                                                            
SPONSOR(S): REPRESENTATIVES(S) HUDSON, Halcro, Phillips, Kerttula                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Jrn-Date    Jrn-Page           Action                                                                                           
 2/22/99       278     (H)  READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRAL(S)                                                                   
 2/22/99       278     (H)  TRA, JUDICIARY, FINANCE                                                                             
 2/26/99       328     (H)  COSPONSOR(S): PHILLIPS, KERTTULA                                                                    
 3/30/99               (H)  TRA AT  1:00 PM CAPITOL 17                                                                          
 3/30/99               (H)  MOVED CSHB 108(TRA) OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                
 3/31/99       618     (H)  TRA RPT  COMMITTEE SUBSTITUTE(TRA)                                                                  
                         5DP                                                                                                    
 3/31/99       619     (H)  DP: COWDERY, SANDERS, HALCRO, HUDSON,                                                               
 3/31/99       619     (H)  MASEK                                                                                               
 3/31/99       619     (H)  FISCAL NOTE (ADM)                                                                                   
 3/31/99       619     (H)  2 ZERO FISCAL NOTES (DPS, DNR)                                                                      
 3/31/99       619     (H)  REFERRED TO JUDICIARY                                                                               
 4/07/99               (H)  JUD AT  1:00 PM CAPITOL 120                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
WITNESS REGISTER                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE FRED DYSON                                                                                                       
Alaska State Legislature                                                                                                        
Capitol Building, Room 104                                                                                                      
Juneau, Alaska  99801                                                                                                           
Telephone:  (907) 465-2199                                                                                                      
POSITION STATEMENT: Sponsor of HB 34.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
AMOS KISSEL                                                                                                                     
8187 Threadneedle Street                                                                                                        
Juneau, Alaska 99801                                                                                                            
Telephone:  (907) 789-3024                                                                                                      
POSITION STATEMENT: Testified on HB 34.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
COREY DAYTON                                                                                                                    
4318 Conifer Lane                                                                                                               
Juneau, Alaska 99801                                                                                                            
Telephone:  (907) 790-4818                                                                                                      
POSITION STATEMENT: Testified on HB 34.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
ANNE D. CARPENETI, Assistant Attorney General                                                                                   
Legal Services Section-Juneau                                                                                                   
Criminal Division                                                                                                               
Department of Law                                                                                                               
P.O. Box 110300                                                                                                                 
Juneau, Alaska 99811-0300                                                                                                       
Telephone:  (907) 465-3428                                                                                                      
POSITION STATEMENT: Testified on HB 34.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
BLAIR McCUNE, Deputy Director                                                                                                   
Central Office                                                                                                                  
Public Defender Agency                                                                                                          
Department of Administration                                                                                                    
900 West 5th Avenue, Suite 200                                                                                                  
Anchorage, Alaska 99501-2090                                                                                                    
Telephone:  (907) 264-4400                                                                                                      
POSITION STATEMENT: Testified on HB 34.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
CORY WINCHELL, Administrative Assistant                                                                                         
   to Representative Pete Kott                                                                                                  
Alaska State Legislature                                                                                                        
Capitol Building, Room 118                                                                                                      
Juneau, Alaska  99801                                                                                                           
Telephone:  (907) 465-3777                                                                                                      
POSITION STATEMENT: Testified on HB 57.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
GAIL VOIGTLANDER, Assistant Attorney General                                                                                    
Special Litigation Section                                                                                                      
Civil Division                                                                                                                  
Department of Law                                                                                                               
1031 West 4th Avenue, Suite 200                                                                                                 
Anchorage, Alaska 99501-1994                                                                                                    
Telephone:  (907) 269-5100                                                                                                      
POSITION STATEMENT: Testified on HB 57.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
KEVIN SMITH, Risk Manager                                                                                                       
Alaska Municipal League                                                                                                         
Joint Insurance Association, Incorporated                                                                                       
217 Second Street, Suite 200                                                                                                    
Juneau, Alaska 99801                                                                                                            
Telephone:  (907) 586-3222                                                                                                      
POSITION STATEMENT: Testified on HB 57.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE BILL HUDSON                                                                                                      
Alaska State Legislature                                                                                                        
Capitol Building, Room 108                                                                                                      
Juneau, Alaska  99801                                                                                                           
Telephone:  (907) 465-3744                                                                                                      
POSITION STATEMENT: Sponsor of HB 108.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
JIM STRATTON, Director                                                                                                          
Division of Parks and Outdoor Recreation                                                                                        
Department of Natural Resources                                                                                                 
3601 C Street, Suite 1200                                                                                                       
Anchorage, Alaska 99503-5921                                                                                                    
Telephone:  (907) 269-8700                                                                                                      
POSITION STATEMENT: Testified in support of HB 108.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
MIKE FOLKERTS, Member                                                                                                           
Alaska Boating Safety Advisory Council                                                                                          
23739 Sunny Glen Drive                                                                                                          
Eagle River, Alaska 99577                                                                                                       
Telephone:  (907) 265-7525                                                                                                      
POSITION STATEMENT: Testified in support of HB 108.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
JEFFERY JOHNSON                                                                                                                 
2041 Courage Circle                                                                                                             
Anchorage, Alaska 99507                                                                                                         
Telephone:  (907) 269-0705                                                                                                      
POSITION STATEMENT: Testified in support of HB 108.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
SUE HARGIS, Boating Safety Coordinator                                                                                          
Seventeenth Coast Guard District                                                                                                
United States Coast Guard                                                                                                       
Department of Defense                                                                                                           
P.O. Box 25517                                                                                                                  
Juneau, Alaska 99802-5517                                                                                                       
Telephone:  (907) 463-2297                                                                                                      
POSITION STATEMENT: Testified in support of HB 108.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
MARK JOHNSON, Chief                                                                                                             
Community Health and Emergency Medical Services                                                                                 
Division of Public Health                                                                                                       
Department of Health and Social Services                                                                                        
P.O. Box 110616                                                                                                                 
Juneau, Alaska 99811-0616                                                                                                       
Telephone:  (907) 465-4101                                                                                                      
POSITION STATEMENT: Testified in support of HB 108.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
ROBERT NAUHEIM, Assistant Attorney General                                                                                      
Natural Resources Section                                                                                                       
Civil Division                                                                                                                  
Department of Law                                                                                                               
1031 West 4th Avenue, Suite 200                                                                                                 
Anchorage, Alaska 99501-1944                                                                                                    
Telephone:  (907) 269-5100                                                                                                      
POSITION STATEMENT: Testified on HB 108.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
ACTION NARRATIVE                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
TAPE 99-22, SIDE A                                                                                                              
Number 0001                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN PETE KOTT called the House Judiciary Standing Committee                                                                
meeting to order at 1:27 p.m.  Members present at the call to order                                                             
were Representatives Kott, Green, Rokeberg, Murkowski, Croft and                                                                
Kerttula.  Representative James arrived at 1:35 p.m.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
HB 34 - REPORTING CRIMES AGAINST CHILDREN                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT announced the first order of business is HB 34, "An                                                               
Act relating to the crime of misprision of a crime against a                                                                    
child."                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT called on Representative Fred Dyson, sponsor of the                                                               
bill.                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Number 0100                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE FRED DYSON, Alaska State Legislature, referred to a                                                              
newspaper article regarding a crime in Las Vegas, Nevada whereby                                                                
other people knew about a child being assaulted and ultimately                                                                  
murdered, but didn't do anything about it.  In looking at that                                                                  
situation, HB 34 was drafted.  It sends a very clear message that                                                               
there is a requirement to go to the aid or report a felonious                                                                   
assault on a child that's in progress.  The companion bill in the                                                               
Senate, SB 5, is broader in that it includes adults as well.  If                                                                
the two bills get through the houses there might have to be some                                                                
compromise on that.  He noted that he has three small amendments:                                                               
one takes it from a felony to a misdemeanor, one adds a positive                                                                
defense for not reporting in fear of one's own safety, and one adds                                                             
a small change.  Most people assume in this culture that most                                                                   
people will aid a child that is being hurt, but there is no                                                                     
requirement to do so.  As a professional mariner, he is required by                                                             
law to aid another vessel.  He believes that aviators have similar                                                              
responsibilities as well.  He reiterated the bill adds a provision                                                              
for citizens to go to the aid of a child who is being assaulted.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Number 0399                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
AMOS KISSEL testified in Juneau.  He commented that he is for the                                                               
bill, but the wording needs to be changed.  It is unconstitutional                                                              
in two ways.  Firstly, it forces people to speak thereby violating                                                              
their First Amendment right.  Secondly, he wondered whether the                                                                 
"commiter" of a crime would also be a witness; and, if so, it would                                                             
put that person in double jeopardy prohibited in the Fifth                                                                      
Amendment.  He suggested the following language:                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     Any person other than the 'commiter' of the crime that saw and                                                             
     then fails to report the sexual abuse, murder, kidnapping, or                                                              
     felony assault of a minor commits a class C crime.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
MR. KISSEL noted that the suggested language might still be in                                                                  
violation of the First Amendment, however.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Number 0486                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GREEN expressed how proud he was of Mr. Kissel for                                                               
testifying today.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Number 0502                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG asked Mr. Kissel whether amending the bill                                                              
to allow an excuse for the failure to report a crime would help the                                                             
constitutionality issue.  Therefore, if a witness felt that his                                                                 
well-being was in jeopardy, he would not commit a crime if he                                                                   
failed to report a crime.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
MR. KISSEL replied yes.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Number 0552                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE CROFT asked Mr. Kissel whether he sees any way to                                                                
fix the First Amendment problem.  The government sometimes forces                                                               
the people to speak.  For example, a person has to file a tax                                                                   
return which tells the government how much money he has made.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
MR. KISSEL replied most people are scared that their life would be                                                              
in danger.  If there was protection for speaking out that would                                                                 
probably make people more willing to call in a crime.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Number 0667                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
COREY DAYTON testified in Juneau.  He commented that he personally                                                              
likes the bill.  He thinks it is good that somebody should report                                                               
a crime against a child, but he finds it unconstitutional because                                                               
of the First Amendment.  House Bill 34 is a violation of any United                                                             
States citizen.  Alaska is part of the United States and passing                                                                
the bill is a violation of a person's freedom of speech.  He thinks                                                             
that if somebody sees a crime against a child, he should report it,                                                             
but if he doesn't the state shouldn't make him.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Number 0753                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE CROFT said the police say on television, "You have                                                               
the right to remain silent", but under this bill a person wouldn't                                                              
have that right.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
MR. DAYTON said when the police don't read a person his                                                                         
rights...(indisc.--coughing).                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Number 0797                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GREEN asked Mr. Dayton how he would react after                                                                  
witnessing his buddy get "whopped up on."                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
MR. DAYTON replied he would report it.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GREEN asked Mr. Dayton whether he would still report                                                             
it if the person who did the whopping saw him.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
MR. DAYTON replied yes.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Number 0836                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG asked Mr. Dayton if he saw a fight before                                                               
school started would he have committed a crime under this bill if                                                               
he didn't report it to a police officer or the principal.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
MR. DAYTON replied he was told that his student rights are                                                                      
different at school.  In other words, a fight like that has to be                                                               
reported.  The constitution also says that student rights are                                                                   
different than public rights when a student is away from school.                                                                
Therefore, it would be a crime if he saw a fight during school                                                                  
hours and he didn't report it.  But, if school hadn't started yet                                                               
it probably wouldn't be a crime.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Number 0922                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT noted that kids at school don't have any rights.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Number 0992                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
ANNE D. CARPENETI, Assistant Attorney General, Legal Services                                                                   
Section-Juneau, Criminal Division, Department of Law, noted that                                                                
the department supports, for the most serious crimes, a bill like                                                               
HB 34.  The department would suggest clarifying the bill to make it                                                             
clear that a victim is not required to report an offense if that                                                                
victim chooses not to.  In comparison to SB 5, the department                                                                   
supports the provision of reporting a crime against a child because                                                             
it further limits the bill.  The department would suggest trying                                                                
only murder in the first and second degrees and kidnapping.  She                                                                
understands the concern of requiring parents who know that their                                                                
children are being sexually abused to report it to the police.                                                                  
However, last year the legislature adopted a law that addresses                                                                 
endangering the welfare of a child in the first degree, which makes                                                             
it a class C felony for a parent to leave a child with any person,                                                              
including another parent, knowing that that person has hurt a child                                                             
either sexually or physically and the child suffers an injury.  As                                                              
long as a parent is protecting a child, it is best to leave                                                                     
reporting an incident to the discretion of a parent.  There are                                                                 
other things that can be done to remove a child from danger, such                                                               
as counseling, that may be in the best interest of that particular                                                              
child.  The department would suggest removing sexual abuse of a                                                                 
minor and sexual assault thereby leaving it up to the parent or                                                                 
individual involved.  The department would also support the                                                                     
amendment reducing it to a misdemeanor.  Hindering prosecution in                                                               
the first degree makes it a class C felony to witness or know about                                                             
a crime, or to aid a person who has committed a crime, or in some                                                               
way benefit from the commission of a crime.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Number 1227                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MS. CARPENETI further said the First Amendment argument expressed                                                               
by the earlier testifiers is a wonderful argument.  There are some                                                              
justices on the Alaska Supreme Court that say Congress may adopt no                                                             
law hindering the freedom of speech.  But, laws have been held up                                                               
in the past that require teachers and physicians to report child                                                                
abuse, and to her knowledge, those laws have not been overturned                                                                
using a First Amendment argument.  She thinks a court would hold                                                                
that the interest of the freedom of speech would be overridden in                                                               
the interest of child protection.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Number 1270                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE CROFT noted that Mr. Kissel also brought up double                                                               
jeopardy and the Fifth Amendment.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
MS. CARPENETI said that is an interesting argument.  She thinks                                                                 
that probably wouldn't be applied to a person who has committed a                                                               
crime, and it probably wouldn't be upheld in court.  She doesn't                                                                
think that it would be a problem in practicality.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Number 1311                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE DYSON said he thought double jeopardy was being                                                                  
tried twice for the same crime, not concurrent charges of the same                                                              
crime.                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE CROFT noted that Representative Dyson is right, but                                                              
there is a possible Fifth Amendment violation by adding another                                                                 
crime of misprision.  The right to remain silent is the right to                                                                
shut up.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Number 1353                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE DYSON said the bill doesn't require a defendant or                                                               
perpetrator to speak up.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE CROFT commented that Representative Dyson is correct                                                             
because of the term "another" [page 1, line 9].                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Number 1373                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GREEN wondered whether most people understand what                                                               
"assault punishable as a felony" is, where to go to immediately                                                                 
report a crime, and can determine if a person is under the age of                                                               
18.  It would be tough to distinguish between a 17 year old and a                                                               
19 year old, for example.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Number 1450                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE DYSON said a person would only be charged if it was                                                              
determined that a person was under the age of 18.  He suspects that                                                             
a person could use, as a positive defense in court, ignorance and                                                               
misperception of the reality of a person's age.  Most folks know                                                                
that a felony assault is pretty serious, however.  It's not a                                                                   
playground scuffle.  He is sure that a court would only require a                                                               
reasonable effort to help a victim.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Number 1550                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT asked Ms. Carpeneti to discuss the concern of                                                                     
immediately reporting a crime.  He can think of instances in rural                                                              
Alaska where a person might not be able to report a crime until the                                                             
next day or for several hours, for example.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MS. CARPENETI replied the Senate included unclassified person                                                                   
felonies as the type of offenses that have to be reported:  murder                                                              
in the first degree, murder in the second degree, kidnapping, and                                                               
arson.  The Senate considered the problem of immediately reporting                                                              
[a crime] because in some circumstances there would be a need to                                                                
get the child to a safe place before calling the police or law                                                                  
enforcement agency.  The Senate did not limit it to a person under                                                              
the age of 18 because it is sometimes hard to tell the age of a                                                                 
child, and because unclassified person felonies are a small group                                                               
of crimes that are easy to...There is no assault crime that is an                                                               
unclassified felony.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Number 1633                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GREEN said that issue has been brought up with other                                                             
types of reporting for the bush communities.  He asked Ms.                                                                      
Carpeneti whether that would apply for several days, until the                                                                  
Village Public Safety Officer returns, for example.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
MS. CARPENETI replied yes there would definitely be a defense of                                                                
impossibility to fulfill a responsibility in that case.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GREEN asked Ms. Carpeneti whether there would be                                                                 
concern because a person could have used a phone and called                                                                     
Anchorage, for example, if that person lived 300 miles away.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS. CARPENETI replied that is a question of fact that a jury would                                                              
have to decide.  It doesn't seem unreasonable to pick up a phone                                                                
and report the death or murder of a child.  She hopes that the                                                                  
courts would charge for using common sense under the circumstances.                                                             
She sees the bill as addressing cases like the one in Nevada, but                                                               
the law should be written clearly so that everybody knows its                                                                   
intent.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Number 1695                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GREEN said he is in favor of the concept.  He just                                                               
doesn't want somebody to get trapped in a class C felony when he                                                                
was trying to do what he could for fear of his own safety or                                                                    
further retribution to the child.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Number 1716                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG said the bill does not distinguish between                                                              
juveniles.  He asked Ms. Carpeneti whether a juvenile who reports                                                               
a crime to a person in authority would fit into the fact-pattern of                                                             
the bill.  The bill says "assault."                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
MS. CARPENETI replied she would limit the bill to unclassified                                                                  
felonies.  It is possible for a child, who doesn't report a                                                                     
schoolyard fight to a teacher or principal, to be reported to DFYS                                                              
(Division of Family and Youth Services).  It is unlikely, however.                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Number 1776                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG asked Ms. Carpeneti whether misprision is                                                               
a felony of common law.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
MS. CARPENETI replied misprision is an old crime in common law, but                                                             
there are no common law crimes in Alaska.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Number 1798                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG asked Ms. Carpeneti whether it would be                                                                 
possible to give rights to a cause of action in tort for monetary                                                               
damages if the alleged victim was over 18 years of age and                                                                      
consented to some type of sexual abuse.  In that case no crime was                                                              
committed.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
MS. CARPENETI replied people can sue for just about anything.  She                                                              
doesn't feels she is the best person to answer that question.  It                                                               
is a civil law question.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Number 1837                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG asked Ms. Carpeneti whether there is                                                                    
accessories to crimes in Alaska.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
MS. CARPENETI replied yes.  There is accomplice liability.  She                                                                 
explained when the bill was first introduced she asked the district                                                             
attorneys whether these types of situations even arise in Alaska.                                                               
The Fairbanks district attorney responded that there had been a few                                                             
cases in which people were present at the scene of a bad crime, but                                                             
hadn't done anything enough to be liable according to any                                                                       
accomplice or hindering prosecution theories.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Number 1878                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT asked Representative Rokeberg whether he is concerned                                                             
that if a victim consented and someone reported it as a crime that                                                              
person's name could be defamed.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG replied exactly.  The bill creates a new                                                                
classification of crime.  It is the job of the House Judiciary                                                                  
Standing Committee to look at the most bizarre fact-patterns to                                                                 
ensure that the bill fits them.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Number 1915                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE CROFT said he is concerned because he sees felonious                                                             
assault as encompassing a vehement schoolyard brawl.  The people                                                                
surrounding that brawl would then be either liable for a class C                                                                
felony or class A misdemeanor.  It's important to determine whether                                                             
or not a child who is a perpetrator or a witness has to report it.                                                              
It creates a different tilt on reporting.  The bill doesn't say                                                                 
that a person can either "help" or "report".  In other words, if a                                                              
person jumps in and beats a perpetrator off and walks away, that                                                                
person might be liable for a class C felony.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Number 2017                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE DYSON said he doesn't believe that he would have a                                                               
problem with putting an age limit on the person guilty of                                                                       
committing the crime of misprision.  There should be discussion on                                                              
what age it should be - 18, 21, 16, 14, etc.  Obviously, there is                                                               
a lower limit where a kid would not be charged because he doesn't                                                               
understand this type of responsibility.  In addition, he believes                                                               
that someone should be there to intervene.  Just because the                                                                    
perpetrator is a child it doesn't mean that there isn't a                                                                       
responsibility to do the best thing.  He doesn't want to exclude                                                                
perpetrators on an age-basis.  He wants to send a clear signal to                                                               
citizens that they have a good Samaritan kind of responsibility to                                                              
help out.  If a person intervened and stopped a crime in process,                                                               
that would accomplish his goal of rescuing the victim.  But, if a                                                               
crime was precipitated in a person's presence, it rises to the                                                                  
seriousness of kidnapping, rape and murder, and that person has the                                                             
responsibility to report the crime.  He suspects that this would                                                                
very seldomly be enforced.  He suspects it would be enforced for                                                                
the very flagrant cases like in Nevada or New York.  There may be                                                               
people out there who have observed a crime and didn't report it,                                                                
and society has a right to know.  The bill puts in code a societal                                                              
responsibility to be a good citizen, and tries to stop evil from                                                                
happening.  He also hopes that reporting a crime would cut down on                                                              
the recidivism rate, particularly for crimes against children                                                                   
because folks who get into that tend to like it and there is often                                                              
more than one victim.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Number 2179                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT asked Ms. Carpeneti whether a mother would have to                                                                
report a crime of sexual assault by her husband that her daughter                                                               
confessed to her.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
MS. CARPENETI replied the term "witnesses" signifies being in the                                                               
presence of the offense or close enough to hear it.  The Senate                                                                 
bill says "witnesses or has actual knowledge of the crime."  The                                                                
term "witnesses" would avoid criminal responsibility of a mother if                                                             
she learns later from her child of the crime.  Under endangering                                                                
the welfare of a child Act, that the legislature adopted last year,                                                             
that mother could not leave the child again [with the perpetrator]                                                              
and escape criminal charges if the child is sexually assaulted or                                                               
abused again.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Number 2247                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE DYSON said he wouldn't object to deleting the                                                                    
phrases, "sexual assault of a child" or "sexual abuse of a minor".                                                              
That was dealt with in HB 375 last year.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Number 2262                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE JAMES said she is extremely concerned about the                                                                  
broadness of this bill.  She understands the concerns, but she also                                                             
understands that "you cannot make a perfect world."  The more the                                                               
legislature tries to make this a perfect world the more government                                                              
is built in, which is distressing to her.  It is difficult to                                                                   
believe that she wouldn't report a crime, except in the case of two                                                             
people observing a crime and one of them is the mother of the                                                                   
victim.  In that scenario, she believes it's the responsibility of                                                              
the mother to report the crime, and she hopes that there would be                                                               
other choices for that mother.  She is concerned about exacerbating                                                             
the complications for the mother and the child if the second person                                                             
who witnessed the crime reported it and the mother didn't in that                                                               
same scenario.  In addition, if a perpetrator is a "big, bad                                                                    
hombre" a person might take caution and notice of that person's                                                                 
protection before reporting a crime.  She wants to see a new                                                                    
drafting of the bill encompassing some of the concerns discussed                                                                
today.  She's not pleased with how it is written now.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Number 2364                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE MURKOWSKI referred to the language, "assault                                                                     
punishable as a felony", and cited a scenario whereby a witness saw                                                             
a fight outside a hub bar but didn't report it, and one of the                                                                  
persons involved ended up dead.  It is an issue of timing.  At what                                                             
point does a person intervene? she asked.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Number 2428                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE DYSON noted that a person is only guilty of                                                                      
misprision if that person knows a crime is being committed.  A                                                                  
prosecutor would have to prove that a person knew there was a crime                                                             
being committed.  It's just like slander.  There has to be                                                                      
malicious intent.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Number 2460                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT said that's not the way he reads the bill.  The bill                                                              
doesn't say, "knowingly witnesses".                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
MS. CARPENETI said, if the statute doesn't give a culpable mental                                                               
state, the courts must read in "knowingly" under those                                                                          
circumstances.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
TAPE 99-22, SIDE B                                                                                                              
Number 0001                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MS. CARPENETI continued.  It might not be a bad idea to clarify                                                                 
culpable mental state as knowing that the act being witnessed is a                                                              
crime.                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Number 0020                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE DYSON said the bill sends a message of                                                                           
responsibility in helping a child who is either being raped, killed                                                             
or kidnaped, if a person witnesses it.  The only other choice is                                                                
the status quo, which is utterly unacceptable.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Number 0055                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT noted that all the committee members agree with                                                                   
Representative Dyson, according to their comments.  The committee                                                               
members are just trying to make the bill clear and concise for a                                                                
defense.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Number 0067                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GREEN cited a scenario whereby a perpetrator                                                                     
threatens both a witness and the victim for reporting an crime, but                                                             
the victim eventually reports it.  He asked whether either or both                                                              
of them are liable of a class C felony.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
MS. CARPENETI replied she thinks so.  It could probably be argued                                                               
that this doesn't include a victim's responsibility to report [a                                                                
crime], but it needs to be made clear.  In addition, the felonious                                                              
assault needs to be considered and possibly...                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Number 0138                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE CROFT interjected and stated, under American theory                                                              
of liberty, the government only has the right to stop a person from                                                             
conduct that harms another.  "If we're to retain any bit of                                                                     
liberty, I have the ability to walk through without impacting, but                                                              
without corresponding obligations, that you're making a fundamental                                                             
change in an American, possibly English, but now largely American                                                               
idea of liberty that I didn't cause that, I did nothing to aid it,                                                              
but I'm not gonna do nothing to stop it.  And, where do you get off                                                             
telling me I have to?"                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Number 0176                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE DYSON replied it is the same argument of leaving a                                                               
burning building without saying anything and everybody burned to                                                                
death.  He reiterated this bill is for a crime against a child.  A                                                              
child is not a fully responsible person, and adults have an extra                                                               
responsibility to look out for their welfare.  Children are on a                                                                
continuum from complete self-dependence to complete dependance.                                                                 
This bill follows along that tradition.  It is also why he chose                                                                
not to include adults, even though his heart is there as well.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Number 0216                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KERTTULA said she is concerned about legislating                                                                 
good and evil.  In addition, from all her years of practicing                                                                   
criminal law, she didn't even know the term "misprision."  She is                                                               
also concerned about problems of proof in court coupled with Fifth                                                              
Amendment issues.  If a witness does not come forward and report [a                                                             
crime] and is charged, there is a circular Fifth Amendment problem.                                                             
The difference between this type of approach and the approach used                                                              
last year of not leaving a child with someone who has assaulted a                                                               
child, is that this approach will wind up in the courts with                                                                    
prosecutions thrown out.  That is probably the reason it is not                                                                 
seen in America today.  The other approach is much stronger.  She                                                               
commented she looks forward to seeing the bill brought back and                                                                 
noted that taking the victim out is an absolute, otherwise it's                                                                 
re-victimizing the victim.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Number 0294                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG asked Representative Dyson the status of                                                                
H.R.4531.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE DYSON replied, he believes, that it has not passed                                                               
yet.                                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG explained H.R.4531 mandates a criminal                                                                  
penalty on an individual 18 years of age or older who fails to                                                                  
report to a state or local law enforcement official that the                                                                    
individual has witnessed another individual engaging in sexual                                                                  
abuse of a child.  He wondered whether last year's bill satisfies                                                               
this requirement.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
MS. CARPENETI said she is not familiar enough with H.R.4531 to                                                                  
answer his question.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG commented that Representative Dyson has                                                                 
indicated he would agree to remove sexual abuse from the bill.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE DYSON said his biggest concern is getting the victim                                                             
out of the situation.  Four states now have good Samaritan laws                                                                 
whereby a person who fails to do what that person can to rescue a                                                               
child can be prosecuted.  He will get that information to the                                                                   
committee members at the next meeting.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Number 0392                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KERTTULA asked Ms. Carpeneti whether most of those                                                               
types of situations get prosecuted as accomplice liability.  That                                                               
has been her experience.  If there was any furtherance, a person                                                                
would be an accomplice after the fact.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Number 0412                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MS. CARPENETI reiterated this is not a common occurrence in Alaska,                                                             
which is why when she saw the bill she asked the district attorneys                                                             
whether or not they have seen situations like this.  When there is                                                              
any aid on behalf of a defendant, there is a charge of hindering                                                                
prosecution or accomplice liability if there is evidence of helping                                                             
in the commission of a crime.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Number 0436                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GREEN noted that during a children's caucus he heard                                                             
from three victims who noted that this is not an uncommon situation                                                             
in Alaska, and these were not necessarily Native types.  At least                                                               
one of the victims was Caucasian.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
MS. CARPENETI replied she was talking about stranger-type offenses.                                                             
She wasn't talking about parental knowledge of child abuse, for                                                                 
example.  She has heard that there are a lot of situations where                                                                
one parent is aware of something going on with her husband or                                                                   
boyfriend, but those situations are covered under endangering the                                                               
welfare of a child statute.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Number 0506                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GREEN asked Ms. Carpeneti whether there is anything                                                              
in federal law that deals with misprision or something like it.                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MS. CARPENETI replied misprision laws were common about a century                                                               
ago.  They have fallen into disuse for the reasons discussed today.                                                             
It is hard to legislate decent behavior.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Number 0533                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GREEN asked Ms. Carpeneti how the four states, that                                                              
Representative Dyson referred to, are getting around these types of                                                             
questions.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
MS. CARPENETI deferred the question to Representative Dyson.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE DYSON said he doesn't know.  He will find out.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Number 0556                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT opened the meeting up to public testimony.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Number 0568                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
BLAIR McCUNE, Deputy Director, Central Office, Public Defender                                                                  
Agency, Department of Administration, testified via teleconference                                                              
from Anchorage.  In the 1980's, when the legislature adopted the                                                                
criminal code, it decided to have a very broadly written hindering                                                              
prosecution law to cover situations like the one in Nevada.  He                                                                 
enjoyed hearing the argument of the Fifth Amendment from the                                                                    
students who testified earlier.  Even if the law was passed, a                                                                  
person still has the right not to report [a crime] even if that                                                                 
person was involved.  The courts have interpreted the Fifth                                                                     
Amendment so that a person does not have an affirmative duty to                                                                 
come forward if there is a reasonable possibility that he might be                                                              
prosecuted and he has the right to remain silent.  "So, you have                                                                
kind of a strange situation.  If you were in cahoots at all with                                                                
the person who did this, you would be privileged.  If you don't                                                                 
have any criminal liability, if you're pure as the driven snow, you                                                             
do have--you are--you run the risk of being charged with a felony                                                               
or misdemeanor under the way it's amended in the Senate."  In                                                                   
addition, if a person doesn't immediately report [a crime] perhaps                                                              
that person would have a further Fifth Amendment privilege with                                                                 
this statute.  In other words, "Oh my God, I didn't immediately                                                                 
report it.  Do I have to report it now?  No, that could mean I'd be                                                             
liable for a charge if I did."  He also noted that he believes the                                                              
federal misprision has not been repealed, but has gone to the                                                                   
hindering prosecution route as a way to deal with these types of                                                                
situations.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Number 0773                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT declared, based on what he has heard today, there are                                                             
some problematic issues that need to be addressed.  He assigned the                                                             
bill to a subcommittee consisting of himself, Representative Dyson                                                              
and Ms. Carpeneti.  The subcommittee will try to bring something                                                                
back to the full committee tomorrow.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
HB 57 - STATE & MUNI IMMUNITY FOR Y2K                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT announced the next order of business is HB 57, "An                                                                
Act relating to immunity for certain claims against the state, a                                                                
municipality, or agents, officers, or employees of either, arising                                                              
out of or in connection with the year 2000 date change; and                                                                     
providing for an effective date."                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Number 0830                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE JAMES made a motion to rescind the action of passing                                                             
HB 57 from the committee earlier.  There being no objection, it was                                                             
so moved.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Number 0847                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE JAMES made a motion to adopt the committee                                                                       
substitute for HB 57, 1-GH1005\D.  There being no objection, it was                                                             
so moved.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Number 0886                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CORY WINCHELL, Administrative Assistant to Representative Pete                                                                  
Kott, Alaska State Legislature, noted that the word "not" was not                                                               
included on page 3, lines 8-10.  As a result, the immunity                                                                      
described in this section would apply if clear and convincing                                                                   
evidence is shown.  Originally, the committee wanted to show that                                                               
the immunity would not apply if clear and convincing evidence is                                                                
shown.                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT noted that is what "some" of the committee members                                                                
wanted to show.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Number 0960                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
GAIL VOIGTLANDER, Assistant Attorney General, Special Litigation                                                                
Section, Civil Division, Department of Law, testified via                                                                       
teleconference from Anchorage.  She stated, if the intent is to                                                                 
make this an immunity to avoid a lawsuit, a definition of the                                                                   
phrase, "good faith efforts", would be appropriate.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Number 1018                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GREEN asked Ms. Voigtlander whether simply                                                                       
establishing a definition would remove the problem of going through                                                             
a trial for a factual determination.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MS. VOIGTLANDER replied it would help if it was crafted in a way                                                                
that there wouldn't be an issue of fitting the conduct within the                                                               
definition.  The problem is getting everybody to "read off the same                                                             
page" in terms of the facts and what they mean.  It is more often                                                               
the case that a trial judge is unable to resolve any factual issues                                                             
and, therefore, it has to go to trial to be resolved.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Number 1084                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GREEN asked Ms. Voigtlander, even with a definition,                                                             
whether the state would still have to go through the riggers of a                                                               
trial each time something like this came up to determine whether                                                                
there were good faith efforts.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
MS. VOIGTLANDER replied findings would be made at the trial court                                                               
level, presumably the superior court level.  And, under the laws of                                                             
the state one superior court does not have to follow another                                                                    
superior court's findings or rulings if the parties are not the                                                                 
same.  Superior court is bound only be appellate case law as                                                                    
controlling.  In addition, depending on the claim the facts might                                                               
change.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Number 1185                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT announced there are three amendments and labeled them                                                             
as "Amendment 6", "Amendment 7", and "Amendment 8".                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Number 1292                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG spoke to Amendment 6 before adopting it.                                                                
It reads as follows:                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     Page 3, lines 8-10:                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
          Delete "The immunity described in this subsection applies                                                             
          only if the affected party shows by clear and convincing                                                              
          evidence that the state did not use good faith efforts to                                                             
          avoid the failure that caused the damages in the civil                                                                
          action."                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG explained Amendment 6 fundamentally takes                                                               
away the defense of the state against any year 2000 (Y2K) action.                                                               
This bill doesn't have the criteria as set out in HB 82, and                                                                    
without that language it does severe harm to the intent of the bill                                                             
and the desire of the Administration to have immunity for the                                                                   
state.  The amendment may leave the municipal governments below the                                                             
state level still liable, however.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Number 1458                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MS. VOIGTLANDER asked whether there is a parallel change to AS                                                                  
09.65.070.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT AND REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG replied no                                                                            
simultaneously.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG said he's not sure where it would fit into                                                              
AS 09.65.070 precisely.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Number 1497                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE CROFT stated, if Representative Rokeberg is trying                                                               
to make a distinction between the state and municipality, then                                                                  
there would need to be a technical change on page 4 for it to make                                                              
sense.                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG said that is a separate issue, and                                                                      
suggested discussing each one separately.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE CROFT said it would be easier to clean up the                                                                    
language then debate it.  Amendment 8 would get the bill to where                                                               
the committee intended it to be.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Number 1595                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GREEN said either one of the amendments would still                                                              
have the problem of good faith efforts.  The state or a                                                                         
municipality would still be subject to a full trial each time an                                                                
issue came up.  It and would open it up for lawyers to have a "good                                                             
time."                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Number 1650                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG said the state justifiably deserves                                                                     
immunity because it is making good faith efforts to try to resolve                                                              
the problem.  He cannot say that, however, for the local level                                                                  
governments.  If blanket immunity is granted to them, there is no                                                               
incentive to take corrective actions.  "Therefore, if you wish to                                                               
have the standard where there is the right to claim, it should not                                                              
be against the state, but it should be against the local level                                                                  
government where they should have--should have to prove their good                                                              
faith effort to do this.  Whereas, we already know the state is                                                                 
already doing a good faith effort.  And, if they're not, that's the                                                             
legislature's fault for not giving them enough money."                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Number 1750                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GREEN retracted his comments on Amendment 6.  He                                                                 
misread it.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Number 1778                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG made a motion to move Amendment 6                                                                       
(1-GH1005\D.1, Ford, 3/23/99).                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE CROFT objected.  It comes back to the fundamental                                                                
issue of what it takes to get action.  In this society, it takes                                                                
responsibility to get action, and the state is absolving itself of                                                              
responsibility here.  The reason for getting action is because of                                                               
the potential liability.  Mr. Poe [Commissioner, Department of                                                                  
Administration] testified that the money he has used came from the                                                              
Risk Management Fund.  If there is no risk, he could not have used                                                              
that money.  It is the risk of somebody holding the state                                                                       
responsible for its actions that caused the state to act                                                                        
responsibly.  The efforts that the state has made so far have met                                                               
the good faith standard, but there are still eight months to go,                                                                
and this is a license to stop.  He predicts that the state's                                                                    
efforts will not be as substantial with this amendment.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Number 1944                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE MURKOWSKI said she wishes that there is a way to                                                                 
define the phrase, "good faith efforts", as the committee is trying                                                             
to do in HB 82.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Number 2048                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KERTTULA said that deleting this section opens up                                                                
the dilemma of intentional misconduct.  If that is the way the                                                                  
committee goes then she has other amendments that will be necessary                                                             
to protect against things like that.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Number 2076                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE JAMES she has a problem hearing that efforts will be                                                             
stopped because of immunity.  If the legislature wasn't in control                                                              
and there wasn't interest from the Administration, that might be                                                                
fair to say.  However, there ought to be immunity in this case                                                                  
because she believes that the state is making a good faith effort,                                                              
otherwise "you have to go to court to show why you should."  It's                                                               
the going to court that is expensive and she wants to avoid that.                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Number 2156                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GREEN asked whether there is the possibility of                                                                  
handling this administratively rather than going to court over and                                                              
over again.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT replied there is always that possibility, but it                                                                  
might happen too often.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GREEN replied it would have to be a rare case, but                                                               
at least "you wouldn't be subjecting yourself to constant court                                                                 
actions."                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT called for a roll call vote.  Representatives Green,                                                              
Rokeberg, James and Kott voted in favor of the motion.                                                                          
Representatives Murkowski, Croft and Kerttula voted against the                                                                 
motion.  The motion passed by a vote of 4-3.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Number 2270                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG made a motion to move Amendment 7                                                                       
(1-LG1005\D.2, Ford, 3/24/99).  It reads as follows:                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     Page 1, line 3, following "change;":                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
          Insert "amending Rule 23, Alaska Rules of Civil                                                                       
          Procedure;"                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
     Page 3, following line 10:                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
          Insert a new subsection to read:                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
               "(b) A civil action brought against the state, or                                                                
               against an agent, officer, or employee of the                                                                    
               state, for damages arising from the year 2000 date                                                               
               change and not precluded by (a) of this section may                                                              
               not be brought as a class action unless each member                                                              
               of the class has a claim for economic loss that                                                                  
               exceeds $50,000."                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     Reletter the following subsections accordingly.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     Page 5, following line 16:                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
          Insert a new bill section to read:                                                                                    
               (f) A civil action brought a municipality or                                                                     
               against an agent, officer, or employee of the a                                                                  
               municipality, for damages arising from the year                                                                  
               2000 date change and not precluded by (d)(7) of                                                                  
               this section may not be brought as a class action                                                                
               unless each member of the class has a claim for                                                                  
               economic loss that exceeds $50,000."                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
     Renumber the following bill sections accordingly.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
     Page 5, lines 17-18:                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
          Delete "09.65.070(e)(4) and 09.65.070(e)(5)"                                                                          
          Insert "09.65.070(e)(4), 09.65.070(e)(5), and                                                                         
          09.65.070(f)"                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
     Page 5, following line 18:                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
          Insert a new bill section to read:                                                                                    
          "* Sec. 7. AS 09.65.255(b), enacted by sec. 2 of this                                                                 
          Act, and AS 09.65.070(f), enacted by sec. 5 of this Act,                                                              
          have the effect of amending Rule 23, Alaska Rules of                                                                  
          Civil Procedure, by requiring, in certain class actions                                                               
          relating to the year 2000 date change, that each member                                                               
          of the class have a claim for economic loss that exceeds                                                              
          $50,000."                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
     Renumber the following bill sections accordingly.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE CROFT objected.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG explained Amendment 7 says that, if there                                                               
is any civil action taken against the state or a municipality,                                                                  
economic losses would have to exceed $50,000 for a class action.                                                                
The idea is to limit vexatious litigation for relatively minor                                                                  
amounts of money.  It is similar to language in the private sector                                                              
Y2K bill.  He noted that this doesn't preclude a class action.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Number 2425                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE CROFT stated he is not sure whether the amendment to                                                             
Page 3 is needed at all since the state now has complete immunity.                                                              
The amendment to Page 5 is poor public policy.  It mirrors only one                                                             
section of the private sector Y2K bill...                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
TAPE 99-23, SIDE A                                                                                                              
Number 0001                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG said Representative Croft may have a point.                                                             
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG made a motion to amend Amendment 7 to                                                                   
delete lines 3-8 of the amendment [Page 3, following line 10:].                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Number 0084                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE MURKOWSKI noted that she has a copy of HB 82 and it                                                              
is basically the same provision.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG said the issue on amending Amendment 7 is                                                               
that if there is blanket immunity for the state a provision for a                                                               
class action limitation is not needed.  It is redundant.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT agreed.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE CROFT noted it is a good amendment to Amendment 7;                                                               
it just doesn't go far enough.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT asked whether there is any objection to the motion to                                                             
amend Amendment 7.  There being none, it was so moved.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE JAMES asked Representative Rokeberg to explain the                                                               
changes to Page 5, lines 17-18 of Amendment 7, as amended.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG replied it has to deal with the automatic                                                               
repealers.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Number 0284                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT asked Representative Rokeberg to explain the changes                                                              
to Page 5, following line 18 of Amendment 7, as amended.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG replied it is a court rule change reflected                                                             
in the change to the title.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Number 0456                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE CROFT said, "If we're going to mirror...Now that                                                                 
we've modified it--if we're going to mirror the provisions of the                                                               
private immunity bill, Y2K immunity bill, in this respect, then it                                                              
seems to me that we ought to in the respective liability...That if                                                              
we took a fair amount of care to list a way that you could--steps                                                               
that you could take to get out of liability, or more general if you                                                             
wanted that.  And, we took a fair amount of this committee's time                                                               
trying to craft that just right.  And, if it's 'good for the goose,                                                             
it should be good for the gander.'  So, if we're gonna treat                                                                    
private entities with that level of immunity, a schedule of                                                                     
immunity or an option for a margin of error, I wouldn't have any                                                                
objection to this mirroring provision, if we then go ahead and put                                                              
the same sort of language from the private into the governmental.                                                               
If we're not going to, and staff is passing around the new version                                                              
of HB 82 that has that language, if we're not going to put that                                                                 
level or that description of that specificity of liability than I'm                                                             
will object to this.  Not knowing, what the committee's wish is,                                                                
I'll maintain this objection.  If we had some sense that we were                                                                
trying--gonna mirror what we're doing--asking the private sector to                                                             
do, that would be something different."                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Number 0564                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG said he doesn't have an objection to that                                                               
conceptually.  He objects to cleaning up the Governor's bill.  He                                                               
can't find fault with Representative Croft's logic.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT asked Representative Rokeberg to withdrawal his                                                                   
motion on Amendment 7, as amended, for public testimony.  It is the                                                             
intent to hold the bill over to clean it up.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Number 0651                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
KEVIN SMITH, Risk Manager, Alaska Municipal League, Joint Insurance                                                             
Association, Incorporated, testified in Juneau.  As Representative                                                              
Croft pointed out, "What's sauce for the goose is sauce for the                                                                 
gander."  He feels that all the arguments applied towards Amendment                                                             
6 for the state could be extended to municipalities.  Public                                                                    
resources would be more wisely spent solving the problem as opposed                                                             
to being spent on a defense to court.  There are a whole bunch more                                                             
targets in the municipal arena than the state arena.  As a result,                                                              
the problems are larger in terms of a defense.  He encouraged the                                                               
committee members to consider applying the same standards to the                                                                
municipalities.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Number 0724                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG said the reason for the distinction and                                                                 
concern is for the municipalities that haven't undertaken                                                                       
compliance programs.  He agrees with Mr. Smith in terms of avoiding                                                             
litigation and focusing on compliance.  He thinks that the                                                                      
committee's intention of setting up a defense for good faith                                                                    
standards would be available to those governments that take the                                                                 
actions.  He is concerned because he knows what the state is doing,                                                             
but he doesn't know what every municipal government is doing in the                                                             
state.                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Number 0786                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MR. SMITH said the incentive is the same for the local government                                                               
leaders as it is for the legislators which is being responsible to                                                              
constituents.  There is an incentive for the governments to do what                                                             
they are suppose to without having to be driven by the court                                                                    
system.  He wondered whether showing a demonstration of the efforts                                                             
being taken would go towards helping to apply Amendment 6 to                                                                    
municipalities.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Number 0826                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG said the (indisc.--coughing) is looking at                                                              
setting up a definition of "good faith efforts" in the bill.                                                                    
Therefore, each municipal government would have to meet that                                                                    
standard in order to assert a defense.  He thinks that is the fair                                                              
way to do it.  The committee and legislature do not know what each                                                              
local government is doing or not doing.  He said, "Mr. Smith you                                                                
can't warrant to this committee that every municipal government or                                                              
school district in the state is doing the right thing right now.                                                                
Can you?"                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
MR. SMITH replied naturally he cannot do that.  But, by the same                                                                
token, even if a good faith standard is written out there would                                                                 
still be a question of fact before a trial incurring defense costs                                                              
which takes public dollars - dollars that could be used to replace                                                              
municipal assistance and revenue sharing, for example.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Number 0907                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG said in HB 82 there are other forms of                                                                  
remediation.  In regards to Mr. Smith's comments on municipal                                                                   
assistance and revenue sharing being held up, he would be happy to                                                              
apply Amendment 6 to municipalities.  It's up to the committee.                                                                 
He's happy either way.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Number 0928                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT indicated the bill will be held over and hopefully                                                                
taken up again tomorrow [April 8, 1999].                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Number 0943                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT called for a brief at-ease at 3:15 p.m. and called                                                                
the meeting back to order at 3:17 p.m.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
HB 151 - REVOCATION OF MINOR DRIVER'S LICENSE                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT announced the next order of business is HB 151, "An                                                               
Act relating to revocation and reinstatement of the driver's                                                                    
license of a person at least 14 but not yet 21 years of age."                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT tabled the bill to be heard the next day under "bills                                                             
previously heard/scheduled".                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
HB 108 - USE, REGULATION, AND OPERATION OF BOATS                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT announced the next order of business is HB 108, "An                                                               
Act relating to the use, operation, and regulation of boats;                                                                    
establishing a uniform state waterway marking system; and providing                                                             
for an effective date."                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT called on Representative Bill Hudson, sponsor of the                                                              
bill.                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Number 0998                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE BILL HUDSON, Alaska State Legislature, announced                                                                 
that there is a committee substitute that needs to be adopted for                                                               
discussional purposes.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Number 1028                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE JAMES made a motion to adopt the committee                                                                       
substitute for HB 108, 1-LS0445\N, Ford, 4/6/99, as a working                                                                   
document.  There being no objection, it was so moved.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Number 1048                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON stated HB 108 would establish a comprehensive                                                             
boating safety program in Alaska.  He has wanted the state for the                                                              
last six years to adopt its own boating safety program.  Part of                                                                
the reason for the deaths is because the state does not have any                                                                
concerted effort to try to educate and develop a program to provide                                                             
for the safe operation of small boats in the state.  Alaska is the                                                              
only state that doesn't have such a program.  The bill would                                                                    
transfer the responsibilities and regulatory authority over boat                                                                
safety equipment and other requirements from the United States                                                                  
Coast Guard to the state of Alaska.  The state would assume vessel                                                              
registration.  It would be done by the Division of Motor Vehicles                                                               
[Department of Administration] using their current registration                                                                 
systems.  The bill would also authorize boat dealers to register                                                                
boats at the point-of-sale for convenience.  The bill would also                                                                
mandate that boats in state waters be equipped with the                                                                         
requirements currently required by the coast guard.  The coast                                                                  
guard has been in the lifesaving business for hundreds of years and                                                             
it has determined that there is a minimal set of equipment for                                                                  
various kinds of boats that are most likely to prevent the loss of                                                              
life and the boat.  He cited fire extinguishers, personal flotation                                                             
devices or life jackets, sound producing devices, backfire flame                                                                
protectors, ventilation, and visual distress signals as examples.                                                               
The bill would expand the current coast guard requirement to carry                                                              
those types of safety equipment on all waters within the state                                                                  
adding some small streams and lakes that are not currently covered                                                              
by the coast guard.  Even though there aren't that many, deaths do                                                              
occur in those waters.  In addition, because the state does not                                                                 
have its own safety program that complies with the federal Safe                                                                 
Boating Act of 1971, the state is losing its share of the federal                                                               
marine fuel taxes that the people are paying.  Currently, about                                                                 
$500,000 is being collected and sent outside.  By initiating a                                                                  
safety program, that money would stay in the state along with about                                                             
$600,000 in program receipts annually.  The goal is to concentrate                                                              
on boating safety education.  The charges would be identical to                                                                 
those required and assessed by the coast guard.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT indicated that Charles Hosack from the Division of                                                                
Motor Vehicles [Department of Administration] and Robert Nauheim                                                                
from the Department of Law are available for technical or legal                                                                 
questions.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Number 1421                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
JIM STRATTON, Director, Central Office, Division of Parks and                                                                   
Outdoor Recreation, Department of Natural Resources, testified via                                                              
teleconference from Anchorage.  He declared that the department                                                                 
supports the bill and the committee substitute.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Number 1449                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT asked Mr. Stratton whether he is responsible for                                                                  
publishing the booklet entitled, "Alaska Boater's Handbook".                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. STRATTON replied yes.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT asked Mr. Stratton how often is it published.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MR. STRATTON replied it has been published once.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT asked Mr. Stratton how often he anticipates it will                                                               
be published.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
MR. STRATTON replied the goal is to publish it once a year to allow                                                             
for updates.  The goal is to also give it away for free.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT asked Mr. Stratton how much did it cost to publish it                                                             
and how many were published.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. STRATTON replied about 42,000 were published.  It cost less                                                                 
than 50 cents each.  In total, it cost about $20,000 to $21,000.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Number 1515                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE MURKOWSKI referred to a booklet entitled, "Boating                                                               
Safety Dollars at Work", and noted that there isn't a section on                                                                
Alaska.  She asked Mr. Stratton whether it's correct to say that                                                                
none of the money came from federal dollars.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. STRATTON replied that is correct.  Alaska does not have a                                                                   
federally recognized boating safety program, therefore, it doesn't                                                              
have any federal dollars to put into it.  The money came from the                                                               
state budget.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Number 1554                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MIKE FOLKERTS, Member, Alaska Boating Safety Advisory Council,                                                                  
testified via teleconference from Anchorage.  He declared his                                                                   
support of the bill.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Number 1579                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
JEFFERY JOHNSON testified via teleconference from Anchorage.  He                                                                
has been working with the Division of Parks and Outdoor Recreation                                                              
for 18 years.  He has been a coastal field park ranger and has seen                                                             
his share of tragedies.  In 1997, almost one-third of the                                                                       
fatalities in the state were in or adjacent to state park units.                                                                
He also has a great deal of personal interest in boating safety.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Number 1618                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
SUE HARGIS, Boating Safety Coordinator, Seventeenth Coast Guard                                                                 
District, United States Coast Guard, Department of Defense,                                                                     
testified in Juneau.  The responsibility and opportunity for the                                                                
states to manage their own boating safety program was first passed                                                              
to them in 1958.  The mechanism to fund those programs was passed                                                               
in 1971 with the federal Boating Safety Act.  It formed the                                                                     
mechanism that takes the boating fuel tax monies and distributes                                                                
them to the states.  The monies from Alaska get distributed to all                                                              
the other states.  All the other states and territories have                                                                    
implemented boating safety programs, except for Alaska.  The last                                                               
state to take a program on was New Hampshire in 1988.  The program                                                              
started out with a $35 million appropriation from the federal                                                                   
treasury through the Highway Trust Fund as an annual appropriation.                                                             
It is now at $55 million as a permanent appropriation.  For fiscal                                                              
year 1999 through 2003 $59 million through $71 million have been                                                                
appropriated.  The monies have been steadily increasing due in part                                                             
to an organization called the National Association of State Boating                                                             
Law Administrators, a coalition that fights for boating laws.  In                                                               
response to why Alaska should do this, 50 percent of the fatalities                                                             
that happen in the state are in areas where there is no coast guard                                                             
presence; 30 percent of the fatalities happen on non-navigable                                                                  
waterways where the coast guard absolutely doesn't have a presence,                                                             
and where there are not any safety equipment requirements.  Between                                                             
1989 and 1998, 266 Alaskans lost their lives in noncommercial                                                                   
boating accidents compared to 225 commercial fatalities.  The                                                                   
program works.  In 1971, there were 29 fatalities per 100,000 boats                                                             
nationally.  Now, there are under seven.  Alaska is not following                                                               
that trend, however.  On behalf of the admiral, she expressed the                                                               
coast guard's support of the state taking on such a program.  How                                                               
that is done is up to the legislature, however.  In response to the                                                             
non-motorized registration issue, the coast guard does not have a                                                               
formal position on that.  It would provide more funding for the                                                                 
state match.  The coast guard requires registration of vessels                                                                  
equipped with motorized propulsion, although 30 percent of the                                                                  
fatalities are in non-motorized vessels.  It is important to                                                                    
include some type of minimum length requirement to exclude all the                                                              
Fred Meyer and K-Mart rafts.  The state right now already meets the                                                             
match requirements in good faith because it is working towards a                                                                
program.  The Governor established an office of boating safety in                                                               
July within the Department of Natural Resources.  She noted it is                                                               
a reimbursement program.  The money is trickled in as the office                                                                
spends money that which matches the requirements.  In response to                                                               
the boating safety council issue, it is not part of the federal                                                                 
requirements.  The federal requirements are a lead agency, some                                                                 
kind of law enforcement, and education.  The state already has                                                                  
those requirements.  The state would have to take on mirroring the                                                              
safety equipment requirements, registering boats, and reporting of                                                              
accidents.  The council has been asked for by the voters, and                                                                   
several states have a council of some kind.  She suggested limiting                                                             
the number of meetings, for example, otherwise it can provide                                                                   
valuable user input.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Number 1904                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KERTTULA said she has had a lot of contact regarding                                                             
the inclusion of non-motorized vessels.  She asked Ms. Hargis, if                                                               
the length was increased from 10 feet to 20 feet in terms of                                                                    
registration, would that take them out of the safety portion of the                                                             
program as well.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
MS. HARGIS replied that would essentially exclude almost all                                                                    
non-motorized vessels from registration, but not from the safety                                                                
requirements.  She reiterated one-third of the fatalities are due                                                               
to non-motorized crafts.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Number 1961                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE CROFT asked Ms. Hargis whether there is about                                                                    
$600,000 now in program receipts through licensing fees.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
MS. HARGIS replied, right, through boat registration revenues.                                                                  
Right now, those revenues are paid to the coast guard which in turn                                                             
hands them off to the federal treasury.  The coast guard here in                                                                
Alaska doesn't even get to keep them.  The state would see roughly                                                              
that $600,000 and another $500,000 from the Boating Safety Federal                                                              
Grant Fund.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Number 1993                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE CROFT asked Ms. Hargis how much it would cost if the                                                             
state wanted to keep the same level of safety efforts as the coast                                                              
guard.  In other words, is the money that the state would receive                                                               
enough to run a program?                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
MS. HARGIS replied the state would get roughly $1 million to run a                                                              
boating safety program which is a lot of money.  Right now, the                                                                 
state doesn't get any money to run one.  The coast guard is not                                                                 
stepping back, except that it would not be registering boats                                                                    
anymore.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE CROFT asked Ms. Hargis whether that includes                                                                     
monitoring as well.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
MS. HARGIS replied that money would also go to law enforcement, but                                                             
right now the bill says that 75 percent would go to education.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Number 2038                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE CROFT wondered what level of effort the state would                                                              
have to step up.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON said the state would take over registering                                                                
boats, currently managed by the coast guard, would undertake a                                                                  
statewide boating safety education commitment, and would manage the                                                             
program to ensure that all crafts in the state meet the                                                                         
requirements and are registered.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Number 2086                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE CROFT asked Ms. Hargis how much it costs to run a                                                                
registration program.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
MS. HARGIS replied the estimate from the Division of Motor Vehicles                                                             
[Department of Administration] is roughly $300,000.  It would be a                                                              
cost-positive situation.  The state's efforts for education and law                                                             
enforcement currently pass the coast guard's test.  The state also                                                              
has a designated lead agency.  There are no more requirements that                                                              
the state would have to take on to get funding.  The coast guards                                                               
is hoping the money would be spent on education.  It is part of the                                                             
match to get the federal dollars rolling towards the state.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Number 2134                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON noted that there would be a net gain of about                                                             
$600,000 for new programs and enhancement of the public's                                                                       
awareness.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Number 2144                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE CROFT questioned whether those funds would come from                                                             
a different source.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON replied there would be a new source of funds                                                              
to pay for many of the things that the state currently does.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Number 2165                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KERTTULA asked whether the non-motorized                                                                         
registration fee was reduced to $10 for three years from $24.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON replied yes as a direct response and                                                                      
recognition of the non-motorized kyakers out of Seward and                                                                      
Anchorage.  They were concerned about paying the same amount as                                                                 
those who have big boats.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Number 2235                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MARK JOHNSON, Chief, Community Health and Emergency Medical                                                                     
Services, Division of Public Health, Department of Health and                                                                   
Social Services, testified in Juneau.  The department supports the                                                              
bill.  Drowning is a public health problem.  A combination of                                                                   
safety organizations and federal laws have significantly decreased                                                              
the deaths for commercial fishing.  There have also been some                                                                   
efforts from Native organizations that have impacted boating safety                                                             
as well.  The department believes that by bringing these additional                                                             
funds into the state for safety purposes those trends will                                                                      
continue.  Unfortunately, there haven't been similar trends in the                                                              
recreational categories.  In addition, the department monitors                                                                  
costs associated with near drownings, for example, and other types                                                              
of injuries.  He noted that rescues are very expensive and to the                                                               
extend that legislation like this can help prevent those types of                                                               
things is a savings.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Number 2366                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT referred to page 4, line 20, of the bill, and asked                                                               
why the reporting requirements have been increased from $100 to                                                                 
$500.                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
MS. HARGIS said $500 is the federal reporting requirement.  Alaska                                                              
was well below that requirement at $100.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Number 2421                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT asked Ms. Hargis whether it is part of the reporting                                                              
triad she mentioned earlier or could the state deal with it at the                                                              
$100 level.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MS. HARGIS replied the state could do it at the $100 level.  It                                                                 
would mean that the state would have a more stringent requirement                                                               
than the coast guard.  It is up to the state to decide, however.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT questioned whether the state could go to a less                                                                   
strict requirement of $1,000, for example.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
TAPE 99-23, SIDE B                                                                                                              
Number 0001                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT asked Ms. Hargis whether there is a penalty for not                                                               
reporting an accident.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
MS. HARGIS replied there is a penalty section in the bill [page 9,                                                              
line 4].  It is a class A misdemeanor.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON noted that the bill would require the courts                                                              
to establish a bail schedule.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Number 0070                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT asked Juanita Hensley [Administrator, Division of                                                                 
Motor Vehicles, Department of Administration] whether a class A                                                                 
misdemeanor is consistent with penalties for the failure to report                                                              
vehicular accidents.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON noted that the penalty is restricted to $500.                                                             
The bill reads, "...and may be fined up to $500."                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT noted the bill says the penalty for everything,                                                                   
except that which is contained in (b) [Section 11], would be up to                                                              
$1,000 plus 6 to 12 months in jail.  He is trying to draw some                                                                  
comparisons between the requirements for excess damage to an                                                                    
automobile in excess of $500 and what the bill would do.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Number 0119                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
JUANITA HENSLEY, Administrator, Director's Office, Division of                                                                  
Motor Vehicles, Department of Administration, noted that if a                                                                   
person fails to file a report and is charged for the failure to                                                                 
file a report through the district attorney's office it is a class                                                              
A misdemeanor.  The division doesn't pursue someone for the failure                                                             
to report an accident, however.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Number 0146                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT asked Ms. Hensley whether a person needs to file an                                                               
accident report if there is $8,000 worth of damage, for example,                                                                
and is that person subject to...                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
MS. HENSLEY responded it is a requirement for a person to file an                                                               
accident report.  The police will report an accident, if it is                                                                  
police investigated and there is more than $500 worth of damage.                                                                
If two people are involved in an accident that didn't involve the                                                               
police, the division doesn't have any way of knowing about it,                                                                  
unless one of the parties files a report.  They may file an                                                                     
insurance claim or choose to settle it on their own.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Number 0205                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT asked Ms. Hensley, if there is no injury between two                                                              
parties and one party sends in a report, what would happen to the                                                               
other party.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS. HENSLEY replied there is only a requirement for one of the                                                                  
parties to file an accident report.  The division uses the report                                                               
that is filed to make a determination of who is liable.  A notice                                                               
is sent to both parties for proof of insurance, and if they are not                                                             
insured they lose their drivers' license.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Number 0242                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT questioned whether there are two reports that have to                                                             
be submitted:  proof of insurance and a regular accident/crash                                                                  
report.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
MS. HENSLEY noted that in many cases both parties file their own                                                                
reports.  If there is conflicting information, the courts make a                                                                
decision.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON noted both parties probably file a report for                                                             
insurances purposes.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Number 0275                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KERTTULA asked whether or not registering a boat                                                                 
would be a misdemeanor.  It looks like the exceptions in (b)                                                                    
[Section 11] exclude boat registration.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Number 0300                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MS. HENSLEY said the failure to register a boat would be a class A                                                              
misdemeanor under this section.  She noted that AS 05.25.010 is                                                                 
safety requirements, AS 05.25.020 is the use of boats with water                                                                
skis and surfboards, and AS 05.25.060 is prohibited operations,                                                                 
which are included in the exceptions in (b).                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Number 0328                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE CROFT noted that AS 05.25.060 (2) and (3) are                                                                    
violations while the failure to register a boat is a misdemeanor.                                                               
He likes the distinction, but it seems that the failure to register                                                             
a boat is more like a violation.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
MS. HENSLEY commented that is probably patterned after Title 28,                                                                
failure to register a car, which is a class A misdemeanor.  She                                                                 
noted that the failure to register a snowmobile is a violation.                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE CROFT said, by including kyaks, it becomes a                                                                     
question of how much should the state wax for the failure to                                                                    
register a kyak.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON said these are good points that need to be                                                                
discussed with the drafter of the bill.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON said it seems that reckless endangerment and                                                              
things of that nature ought to be a higher penalty than the failure                                                             
to register a boat.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Number 0401                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT referred to the establishment of the Alaska Boating                                                               
Safety Council and said it seems that is heading in the wrong                                                                   
direction of establishing another bureaucracy.  He asked whether it                                                             
is essential; and, if it is, may be some of its responsibilities                                                                
should be detailed.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Number 0424                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON replied this bill has been discussed with                                                                 
boating organizations and associations which have expressed concern                                                             
of conferring too much power to the commissioner of the Department                                                              
of Natural Resources and the director of the Division of Parks and                                                              
Outdoor Recreation absent some type of user involvement.  The way                                                               
it is crafted now is considerate of both the department and users.                                                              
It sets up the appointed members to the council and no money would                                                              
be given other than travel and per diem expenses.  He said the                                                                  
legislature might want to specify or limit its meeting frequency or                                                             
limit its activity.  He reiterated, if the bill passes, all of the                                                              
expenses for this operation would be paid for with the fees that                                                                
the state would receive.  It wouldn't require new general fund                                                                  
monies.  The council would be a guiding force of reaching the                                                                   
public for education.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Number 0525                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT asked Representative Hudson whether there was any                                                                 
discussion on how many times a year it should meet.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON replied it was discussed and, in general,                                                                 
most felt that twice a year was good.  He suspects that the council                                                             
would be involved in working on the boating safety pamphlet and                                                                 
education proposals.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Number 0574                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT referred to Section 5, "Owner's civil liability."  He                                                             
asked where does the liability stop when the owner of a boat rents                                                              
his boat to another person, for example.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Number 0599                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
ROBERT NAUHEIM, Assistant Attorney General, Natural Resources                                                                   
Section, Civil Division, Department of Law, testified via                                                                       
teleconference from Anchorage.  As far as he can see from the text,                                                             
there are only housekeeping changes in Section 5.  It doesn't seem                                                              
to substantively change operator liability.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Number 0656                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT closed the meeting to public testimony and asked                                                                  
Representative Hudson to incorporate the changes discussed today,                                                               
especially the issue brought up by Representative Kerttula.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON asked Chairman Kott whether he wants him to                                                               
look at a meeting-frequency on the council's activity to be put in                                                              
statute, or under the aegis of the commissioner.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT replied he wants to see it in statute.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON asked Chairman Kott whether two meetings                                                                  
sound reasonable.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT replied may be it should say a minimum of two, or a                                                               
maximum of four, or quarterly as necessary based on the general                                                                 
theme of those in the boating safety industry.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON said, in conclusion, that he has built a very                                                             
good network so far.  It is a balanced network between the                                                                      
motorized and non-motorized boats.  In all of the years that he has                                                             
been involved in boating safety, the area of damage was in the                                                                  
non-motorized areas, such as kyakers.  They begin to believe that                                                               
they are one with the water.  He thinks it is good to have an                                                                   
equitable sharing of the cost that needs to be recovered.  So far,                                                              
none of the testimony has indicated a problem with the reduced fare                                                             
for the non-motorized boats.  They are eager to get involved with                                                               
the safety aspects of the bill, and they have said that small                                                                   
details should not kill the bill.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT indicated that the bill will be held over for further                                                             
consideration.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
ADJOURNMENT                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Number 0788                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIRMAN KOTT adjourned the House Judiciary Standing Committee                                                                  
meeting at 4:10 p.m.                                                                                                            

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