Legislature(2011 - 2012)CAPITOL 120

04/01/2011 01:00 PM JUDICIARY


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* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
+ HB 1 POLICY FOR SECURING HEALTH CARE SERVICES TELECONFERENCED
Heard & Held
*+ HB 179 ANIMAL CRUELTY TELECONFERENCED
Moved Out of Committee
+ Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled TELECONFERENCED
+= HB 88 USE OF FOREIGN LAW TELECONFERENCED
Moved CSHB 88(JUD) Out of Committee
                    ALASKA STATE LEGISLATURE                                                                                  
               HOUSE JUDICIARY STANDING COMMITTEE                                                                             
                         April 1, 2011                                                                                          
                           1:06 p.m.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Representative Carl Gatto, Chair                                                                                                
Representative Steve Thompson, Vice Chair                                                                                       
Representative Wes Keller                                                                                                       
Representative Bob Lynn                                                                                                         
Representative Lance Pruitt                                                                                                     
Representative Max Gruenberg                                                                                                    
Representative Lindsey Holmes                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Representative Mike Chenault (alternate)                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 179                                                                                                              
"An  Act relating  to cruelty  to animals  and making  failure to                                                               
care for  five or more animals  in a single continuous  episode a                                                               
class C felony."                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     - MOVED HB 179 OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 88                                                                                                               
"An    Act   prohibiting    a   court,    arbitrator,   mediator,                                                               
administrative agency,  or enforcement authority from  applying a                                                               
law,  rule,  or  provision  of  an  agreement  that  violates  an                                                               
individual's right under the Constitution  of the State of Alaska                                                               
or the United States Constitution."                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
     - MOVED CSHB 88(JUD) OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 1                                                                                                                
"An Act  stating a public policy  that allows a person  to choose                                                               
or decline any mode of securing health care services."                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
     - HEARD & HELD                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
PREVIOUS COMMITTEE ACTION                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
BILL: HB 179                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE: ANIMAL CRUELTY                                                                                                     
SPONSOR(S): REPRESENTATIVE(S) LYNN                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
03/09/11       (H)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
03/09/11       (H)       JUD, FIN                                                                                               
04/01/11       (H)       JUD AT 1:00 PM CAPITOL 120                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
BILL: HB 88                                                                                                                   
SHORT TITLE: USE OF FOREIGN LAW                                                                                                 
SPONSOR(S): REPRESENTATIVE(S) GATTO                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
01/18/11       (H)       PREFILE RELEASED 1/14/11                                                                               
01/18/11       (H)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
01/18/11       (H)       STA, JUD                                                                                               
03/17/11       (H)       STA AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
03/17/11       (H)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
03/17/11       (H)       MINUTE(STA)                                                                                            
03/22/11       (H)       STA AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
03/22/11       (H)       <Bill Hearing Rescheduled to 3/24/11>                                                                  
03/24/11       (H)       STA AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
03/24/11       (H)       Moved CSHB 88(STA) Out of Committee                                                                    
03/24/11       (H)       MINUTE(STA)                                                                                            
03/25/11       (H)       STA RPT CS(STA) 3DP 2DNP 2NR                                                                           
03/25/11       (H)       DP: P.WILSON, KELLER, LYNN                                                                             
03/25/11       (H)       DNP: GRUENBERG, SEATON                                                                                 
03/25/11       (H)       NR: JOHANSEN, PETERSEN                                                                                 
03/25/11       (H)       FIN REFERRAL ADDED AFTER JUD                                                                           
03/30/11       (H)       JUD AT 1:00 PM CAPITOL 120                                                                             
03/30/11       (H)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
03/30/11       (H)       MINUTE(JUD)                                                                                            
04/01/11       (H)       JUD AT 1:00 PM CAPITOL 120                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
BILL: HB 1                                                                                                                    
SHORT TITLE: POLICY FOR SECURING HEALTH CARE SERVICES                                                                           
SPONSOR(S): REPRESENTATIVE(S) GATTO, LYNN                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
01/18/11       (H)       PREFILE RELEASED 1/7/11                                                                                
01/18/11       (H)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
01/18/11       (H)       HSS, JUD                                                                                               
03/01/11       (H)       HSS AT 3:00 PM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
03/01/11       (H)       Scheduled But Not Heard                                                                                
03/08/11       (H)       HSS AT 3:00 PM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
03/08/11       (H)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
03/08/11       (H)       MINUTE(HSS)                                                                                            
03/15/11       (H)       HSS AT 3:00 PM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
03/15/11       (H)       Moved CSHB 1(HSS) Out of Committee                                                                     
03/15/11       (H)       MINUTE(HSS)                                                                                            
03/16/11       (H)       HSS RPT CS(HSS) 2DP 3NR                                                                                
03/16/11       (H)       DP: DICK, KELLER                                                                                       
03/16/11       (H)       NR: SEATON, MILLER, HERRON                                                                             
04/01/11       (H)       JUD AT 1:00 PM CAPITOL 120                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
WITNESS REGISTER                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
THOMAS REIKER, Staff                                                                                                            
Representative Bob Lynn                                                                                                         
Alaska State Legislature                                                                                                        
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  During discussion of HB 179, responded to a                                                              
question on behalf of the sponsor, Representative Lynn.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
ANNE CARPENETI, Assistant Attorney General                                                                                      
Legal Services Section                                                                                                          
Criminal Division                                                                                                               
Department of Law (DOL)                                                                                                         
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Responded to questions during discussion of                                                              
HB 179.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
KAYLA EPSTEIN, Member                                                                                                           
Animal Control Advisory Board (ACAB)                                                                                            
Animal Care & Control Center                                                                                                    
Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS)                                                                                  
Municipality of Anchorage (MOA)                                                                                                 
Anchorage, Alaska                                                                                                               
POSITION STATEMENT:  Urged passage of HB 179.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
DEBORA GAIL GARDNER, Commissioner                                                                                               
Animal Control Commission                                                                                                       
Fairbanks North Star Borough (FNSB);                                                                                            
Volunteer                                                                                                                       
Pet Pride Cat Rescue;                                                                                                           
Volunteer                                                                                                                       
Spay Neuter Your Pet                                                                                                            
Fairbanks, Alaska                                                                                                               
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in support of HB 179.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
RONNIE ROSENBERG                                                                                                                
President                                                                                                                       
Fairbanks Animal Shelter Fund;                                                                                                  
Commissioner                                                                                                                    
Chair                                                                                                                           
Animal Control Commission                                                                                                       
Fairbanks North Star Borough (FNSB)                                                                                             
Fairbanks, Alaska                                                                                                               
POSITION  STATEMENT:    Provided comments  during  discussion  of                                                             
HB 179.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
DOUGLAS GARDNER, Director                                                                                                       
Legal Services                                                                                                                  
Legislative Legal and Research Services                                                                                         
Legislative Affairs Agency (LAA)                                                                                                
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Responded to  questions during discussion of                                                             
HB 179.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
MARY ELLEN BEARDSLEY, Assistant Attorney General                                                                                
Commercial/Fair Business Section                                                                                                
Civil Division (Anchorage)                                                                                                      
Department of Law (DOL)                                                                                                         
Anchorage, Alaska                                                                                                               
POSITION  STATEMENT:   During discussion  of HB  88, expressed  a                                                             
concern regarding Conceptual Amendment 1.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
PETER PUTZIER, Senior Assistant Attorney General                                                                                
Opinions, Appeals, & Ethics                                                                                                     
Civil Division (Anchorage)                                                                                                      
Department of Law (DOL)                                                                                                         
Anchorage, Alaska                                                                                                               
POSITION  STATEMENT:     Provided   comments  and   responded  to                                                             
questions during discussion of HB 88.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
KAREN SAWYER, Staff                                                                                                             
Representative Carl Gatto                                                                                                       
Alaska State Legislature                                                                                                        
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:   During  discussion of  HB 88,  responded to                                                             
questions on behalf of the sponsor, Representative Gatto.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
KAREN SAWYER, Staff                                                                                                             
Representative Carl Gatto                                                                                                       
Alaska State Legislature                                                                                                        
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:   Presented HB 1 on  behalf of Representative                                                             
Gatto, one of the bill's joint prime sponsors.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
STACIE  KRALY,  Chief  Assistant  Attorney  General  -  Statewide                                                               
Section Supervisor                                                                                                              
Human Services Section                                                                                                          
Civil Division (Juneau)                                                                                                         
Department of Law (DOL)                                                                                                         
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION  STATEMENT:     Provided   comments  and   responded  to                                                             
questions during discussion of HB 1.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
ACTION NARRATIVE                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
1:06:46 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR CARL  GATTO called the  House Judiciary  Standing Committee                                                             
meeting to order at 1:06  p.m.  Representatives Gatto, Gruenberg,                                                               
Lynn, Keller,  and Thompson  were present at  the call  to order.                                                               
Representatives Holmes and  Pruitt arrived as the  meeting was in                                                               
progress.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
                    HB 179 - ANIMAL CRUELTY                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
1:07:41 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR GATTO announced  that the first order of  business would be                                                               
HOUSE BILL  NO. 179, "An Act  relating to cruelty to  animals and                                                               
making  failure to  care for  five or  more animals  in a  single                                                               
continuous episode a class C felony."                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE LYNN,  as the  sponsor of  HB 179,  explained that                                                               
[earlier in  the year], authorities had  to seize [approximately]                                                               
150 severely  neglected dogs from a  home in Willow -  several so                                                               
neglected  that   they  were  already  dead.     Such  incidents,                                                               
unfortunately,  are not  isolated; animal  control officers  have                                                               
had to rescue multiple neglected  animals throughout Alaska since                                                               
2008, and these  are only the cases that are  known about.  Cases                                                               
of mass animal neglect are  shocking, and quickly overwhelm local                                                               
and state animal-rescue services.   Under the changes proposed by                                                               
HB  179, contemporaneous  violations  of  AS 11.61.140  involving                                                               
five  or  more  animals  would  be  a  class  C  felony,  whereas                                                               
currently such behavior  warrants only a class  A misdemeanor for                                                               
each animal neglected.  Under HB  179, the gravity of the charges                                                               
would  reflect the  gravity of  the  crime, thereby  discouraging                                                               
people from  taking on  multiple animals  without the  ability or                                                               
intention to  care for each and  every animal.  The  bill doesn't                                                               
limit  the  number of  animals  that  a  person may  possess,  he                                                               
assured  the   committee,  and   instead  only   addresses  those                                                               
instances in which animals are not  being cared for properly.  In                                                               
conclusion, he asked  members to support HB 179 -  joining him in                                                               
taking a strong stand against serial animal cruelty.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR GATTO noted that proposed AS 11.61.140(a)(8) read:                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
     (8) with  criminal negligence,  contemporaneously fails                                                                
     to  care for  five or  more animals  and, as  a result,                                                                
     causes  the death  of five  or more  animals or  causes                                                                
     severe physical pain or prolonged  suffering to five or                                                                
     more animals.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE LYNN, in response  to questions, acknowledged that                                                               
if  the  behavior outlined  in  proposed  AS 11.61.140(a)(8)  was                                                               
directed at only four animals, it  would still be a violation for                                                               
each  animal   but  each  violation   would  remain  a   class  A                                                               
misdemeanor;  assured  the  committee   that  the  bill  is  only                                                               
addressing  contemporaneous   behavior  rather   than  cumulative                                                               
behavior;  and explained  that when  deciding what  the threshold                                                               
should be  for contemporaneous neglect, five  animals appeared to                                                               
be the most appropriate and practical number.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR GATTO  acknowledged that having  to address  such instances                                                               
of mass animal neglect as  occurred in Willow could overwhelm any                                                               
animal-care facility and its community.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HOLMES noted that  under existing AS 11.61.140(h),                                                               
if  within the  prior 10  years a  person has  been convicted  of                                                               
violating  AS 11.61.140(a)(2)  - which  addresses the  neglect of                                                               
one animal - then any current  conviction would then be a class C                                                               
felony; AS 11.61.140(a)(2) reads:                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     (2)  with criminal  negligence,  fails to  care for  an                                                                    
     animal  and,  as a  result,  causes  the death  of  the                                                                    
     animal  or causes  severe  physical  pain or  prolonged                                                                    
     suffering to the animal;                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  HOLMES,  in  response to  comments,  offered  her                                                               
understanding  that in  a domestic  violence  (DV) situation,  if                                                               
behavior  as  severe  as  that outlined  in  paragraph  (2)  were                                                               
instead  directed  towards a  person  -  thereby causing  his/her                                                               
death or severe  physical pain or prolonged suffering  - it would                                                               
warrant a felony charge.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
1:15:51 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
THOMAS  REIKER,  Staff,  Representative Bob  Lynn,  Alaska  State                                                               
Legislature, on  behalf of the  sponsor, Representative  Lynn, in                                                               
response  to  a  question  regarding  the  disposal  of  unwanted                                                               
animals,  noted that  existing AS  11.61.140(a)(2) requires  that                                                               
the behavior be conducted with criminal negligence.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
1:17:02 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
ANNE  CARPENETI,  Assistant   Attorney  General,  Legal  Services                                                               
Section, Criminal  Division, Department  of Law  (DOL), explained                                                               
that in  Alaska, animals  are considered property  and as  such a                                                               
person is  not precluded under  AS 11.61.140(a) from  causing the                                                               
death of his/her animal as long  as it's done in a humane manner.                                                               
For  example,  a person  may  not  kill  an animal  by  knowingly                                                               
inflicting severe  and prolonged physical pain  or suffering, [by                                                               
failing  to provide  care,] or  via  the use  of a  decompression                                                               
chamber or  poison.  Shooting  an unwanted animal  would probably                                                               
be  fine, she  ventured, but  surmised that  whether drowning  an                                                               
unwanted   animal  would   be  illegal   would   depend  on   the                                                               
circumstances,  though  it  probably wouldn't  be  considered  as                                                               
resulting in prolonged physical pain or suffering.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GRUENBERG  disclosed that  he [is married  to] the                                                               
next testifier.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
1:19:25 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
KAYLA  EPSTEIN, Member,  Animal  Control  Advisory Board  (ACAB),                                                               
Animal  Care &  Control Center,  Department of  Health and  Human                                                               
Services   (DHHS),  Municipality   of   Anchorage  (MOA),   after                                                               
expressing  appreciation  for the  progress  made  thus far  with                                                               
regard to  [preventing animal cruelty],  noted that  instances of                                                               
multiple-animal   neglect  place   a   large   burden  on   local                                                               
government.   For  example, one  recent  animal-neglect case  her                                                               
organization dealt with involved caring  for 8 dogs, 23 cats, and                                                               
1 bird  for over a  year at an estimated  cost of over  $77,000 -                                                               
which was only  even that low due to donations  of food, shelter,                                                               
and  medical  care -  with  the  resulting conviction  eventually                                                               
allowing  for the  additional removal  of  approximately 50  more                                                               
animals from  another location.   That case,  she relayed,  was a                                                               
nightmare  in terms  of logistics,  expenses,  and the  emotional                                                               
pain  experienced by  both the  staff and  volunteers who  had to                                                               
care for those sick and dying  animals.  In conclusion, she urged                                                               
passage of  HB 179, characterizing  it as a logical  step towards                                                               
fixing a  true problem, though  she mentioned that  in addressing                                                               
the  issue of  criminal neglect  - not  simply stupid  neglect or                                                               
ignorant  neglect  - her  organization  regrets  that the  bill's                                                               
proposed  threshold  for a  felony  crime  is five  animals,  and                                                               
suggested that  that proposed threshold  should instead  be three                                                               
animals.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
1:22:44 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
DEBORA  GAIL GARDNER,  Commissioner,  Animal Control  Commission,                                                               
Fairbanks  North Star  Borough (FNSB);  Volunteer, Pet  Pride Cat                                                               
Rescue; Volunteer, Spay  Neuter Your Pet, said she  is in support                                                               
of  HB  179,  and  that  she agrees  with  the  comments  of  the                                                               
representative from  the ACAB that HB  179 is a good  start.  She                                                               
remarked,  though, that  it  would be  nice to  see  any kind  of                                                               
criminal negligence [of animals] be  a felony, adding that caring                                                               
for such  neglected animals is overwhelming,  heartbreaking work.                                                               
Particularly  for cats,  such criminal  negligence  amounts to  a                                                               
death sentence.  In conclusion,  she reiterated that she supports                                                               
HB 179.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
1:23:59 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
RONNIE  ROSENBERG,  President,  Fairbanks  Animal  Shelter  Fund;                                                               
Commissioner, Chair,  Animal Control Commission,  Fairbanks North                                                               
Star Borough  (FNSB), after mentioning that  the Fairbanks Animal                                                               
Shelter  Fund  provides  support  for the  Fairbanks  North  Star                                                               
Borough's animal shelter, and that  she has been active in animal                                                               
control issues  in Alaska  for over 15  years, relayed  that over                                                               
the  years, there  have been  several  cases involving  breeders,                                                               
hoarders,  and  other individuals  who  have  been neglecting  or                                                               
abusing large numbers  of animals.  Because of  the prevalence of                                                               
such incidents, she  opined, it's really important for  HB 179 to                                                               
pass.    Having to  intake  these  large  numbers of  abused  and                                                               
neglected animals  puts a tremendous  burden - including  a large                                                               
financial  burden -  on shelters,  and causes  disruption in  the                                                               
community.    She  offered  her belief  that  providing  for  the                                                               
enhanced sentencing associated with  a felony charge makes sense,                                                               
particularly  for those  who torture  their animals,  or who  for                                                               
days  on end,  for no  apparent reason,  don't feed  or care  for                                                               
their animals  in any  reasonable fashion.   She said  she agrees                                                               
with the  DOL representative that shooting  one's unwanted animal                                                               
isn't a crime in Alaska, pointing  out that in rural areas of the                                                               
state,  it can  be the  only  way of  managing an  overpopulation                                                               
situation.  In conclusion, she urged passage of HB 179.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  GATTO mentioned  that members'  packets  include a  letter                                                               
from  the  executive  director  of the  Alaska  Society  for  the                                                               
Prevention of  Cruelty to  Animals (Alaska  SPCA), and  that that                                                               
letter's last sentence read, "We are  very grateful to all of you                                                               
for your  interest and hard work  on behalf of animals,  and hope                                                               
that you will  take HB 179 just  one more notch to  make it truly                                                               
effective and meaningful for those  creatures who depend entirely                                                               
upon your decisions for their very lives."                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  GATTO,  after ascertaining  that  no  one else  wished  to                                                               
testify, closed public testimony on HB 179.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
1:27:55 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
DOUGLAS GARDNER, Director, Legal  Services, Legislative Legal and                                                               
Research Services, Legislative Affairs  Agency (LAA), in response                                                               
to  questions, offered  his understanding  that  under the  bill,                                                               
prosecutors  would  have discretion  with  regard  to whether  to                                                               
charge a person  who'd criminally neglected five  or more animals                                                               
with  a   felony  under  proposed   paragraph  (8),  or   with  a                                                               
misdemeanor for  each criminally-neglected animal  under existing                                                               
AS 11.61.140(b); that judges would  retain discretion with regard                                                               
to sentencing, including considering  the effects associated with                                                               
felony  convictions  compared  to  misdemeanor  convictions,  and                                                               
whether to  apply the rule of  lenity; and that if  a person acts                                                               
intentionally,  knowingly, or  recklessly, the  requirement under                                                               
existing AS 11.61.140(a)(2) and  proposed AS 11.61.140(a)(8) that                                                               
the  person act  with  criminal negligence  would  be met,  since                                                               
criminal  negligence  is the  lowest  mental  state provided  for                                                               
under  Alaska's   criminal  statutes.    In   response  to  other                                                               
questions,  he,  too, agreed  that  humanely  shooting one's  own                                                               
unwanted animals,  regardless of how  many, would not be  a crime                                                               
under  Alaska   law,  and  surmised  that   whether  a  situation                                                               
involving a breeder would warrant  a felony charge under proposed                                                               
AS 11.61.140(a)(8)  would depend  on the  circumstances, evidence                                                               
of causation, expert testimony, and prosecutorial discretion.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR GATTO expressed strong disfavor with "puppy mills."                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
1:44:03 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE THOMPSON moved  to report HB 179  out of committee                                                               
with    individual   recommendations    and   the    accompanying                                                               
[indeterminate] fiscal notes.   There being no  objection, HB 179                                                               
was reported from the House Judiciary Standing Committee.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
                   HB 88 - USE OF FOREIGN LAW                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
1:44:52 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR GATTO  announced that the  next order of business  would be                                                               
HOUSE  BILL NO.  88,  "An Act  prohibiting  a court,  arbitrator,                                                               
mediator,  administrative agency,  or enforcement  authority from                                                               
applying a law, rule, or  provision of an agreement that violates                                                               
an  individual's right  under the  Constitution of  the State  of                                                               
Alaska  or   the  United  States  Constitution."     [Before  the                                                               
committee was  CSHB 88(STA); adopted  as the working  document on                                                               
3/30/11 was  the proposed  committee substitute  (CS) for  HB 88,                                                               
Version 27-LS0333\D, Bailey, 3/30/11.]                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
The committee took an at-ease from 1:45 p.m. to 1:48 p.m.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
1:49:12 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KELLER  made  a   motion  to  adopt  [a  written]                                                               
Conceptual Amendment 1, which [although  incorrect with regard to                                                               
placement and text] read [original punctuation provided]:                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
     Page2,  line 28                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     (g) In this  section, "foreign law" means  a law, rule,                                                                    
     or  legal  code  or  system  established  and  used  or                                                                    
     applied in a jurisdiction  outside of the United States                                                                    
     and  the territories  of the  United States.   "Foreign                                                                    
     law"  does  not  mean  nor   shall  it  include  a  law                                                                    
     currently established in Alaska statute, or Case Law.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GRUENBERG objected for the purpose of discussion.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KELLER  indicated   his  belief  that  Conceptual                                                               
Amendment  1  would  serve  as   a  grandfather  clause,  thereby                                                               
addressing concerns  raised during  the bill's last  hearing that                                                               
HB 88's  prohibition of foreign  law could mistakenly  be applied                                                               
in situations involving Catholic canon law, for example.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GRUENBERG,  citing his nescience regarding  all of                                                               
Conceptual   Amendment  1's   possible  implications,   expressed                                                               
concern   that   its   adoption   may   have   some   significant                                                               
ramifications.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
The committee took an at-ease from 1:53 p.m. to 1:57 p.m.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR GATTO  clarified that Conceptual  Amendment 1  is proposing                                                               
to  add to  page 3,  line  1, of  Version  D -  after the  words,                                                               
"territories of the United States." - the words:                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     "Foreign law" does not mean nor shall it include a law                                                                     
     currently established in Alaska statute, or Case Law.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KELLER concurred,  and offered  his understanding                                                               
that  via either  statute  or  case law,  Catholic  canon law  is                                                               
currently being applied by the courts.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
2:00:48 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MARY    ELLEN    BEARDSLEY,     Assistant    Attorney    General,                                                               
Commercial/Fair  Business  Section, Civil  Division  (Anchorage),                                                               
Department  of Law  (DOL), in  response to  a question,  relaying                                                               
that she would prefer to have  a little more time to research the                                                               
issue, characterized  Conceptual Amendment 1 as  extremely broad,                                                               
and  expressed   concern  that  its  ending   word,  "Law"  could                                                               
encompass a lot of things.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
2:01:42 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
PETER  PUTZIER,  Senior  Assistant  Attorney  General,  Opinions,                                                               
Appeals, & Ethics, Civil Division  (Anchorage), Department of Law                                                               
(DOL), on the  issue of tribal law, explained  that in suggesting                                                               
the wording [currently in Version  D's legislative intent section                                                               
and proposed  AS 11.61.140(g)] regarding HB  88's inapplicability                                                               
to  tribal law  and its  definition of  the term,  "foreign law",                                                               
respectively, his  assumptions were that  tribal law was  not the                                                               
focus  of the  bill, and,  even if  it were  the focus,  that the                                                               
legislature doesn't  have any authority to  restrict the inherent                                                               
authority  of tribes.   Specifically,  because the  term "foreign                                                               
law" is  being defined  in the  bill as being  a law  outside the                                                               
jurisdiction  of  the United  States  and  its territories,  then                                                               
including language  stating that  foreign law  does not  mean nor                                                               
include  tribal   law  is   unnecessary  given   that  federally-                                                               
recognized  tribes -  and certainly  the tribes  in the  state of                                                               
Alaska - are  within the jurisdiction of the United  States.  And                                                               
to  clarify  that  point  further,   Version  D  now  includes  a                                                               
legislative intent section that reads:                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
     LEGISLATIVE  INTENT.     It   is  the  intent   of  the                                                                    
     legislature  that AS  09.68.140, enacted  by sec.  3 of                                                                    
     this  Act, does  not address,  directly or  indirectly,                                                                    
     any  question  of  tribal law  or  the  application  of                                                                    
     tribal  law  or   otherwise  address  the  intersection                                                                    
     between state law and tribal law.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
2:05:05 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
KAREN  SAWYER, Staff,  Representative  Carl  Gatto, Alaska  State                                                               
Legislature, on  behalf of the sponsor,  Representative Gatto, in                                                               
response   to  a   question,  concurred   that  Version   D  does                                                               
incorporate Mr. Putzier's suggested wording.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. PUTZIER, in  response to a question, offered  his belief that                                                               
including the aforementioned legislative  intent section would be                                                               
sufficient, and that tribal law  is not, in any event, implicated                                                               
under  the term,  "foreign  law"  as defined  in  the  bill.   In                                                               
response to another question, he said  he tends to agree with Ms.                                                               
Beardsley   that   Conceptual    Amendment   1   is   potentially                                                               
complicated.   He  said he  questions, for  example, whether  its                                                               
proposed exclusion  - [although perhaps intended  to address] the                                                               
application  of Catholic  canon law  - also  includes regulations                                                               
or, given  that it  specifies only  Alaska's statutes,  laws from                                                               
other states.  He opined that  Conceptual Amendment 1 ought to be                                                               
scrutinized  further  to ensure  that  it  hasn't any  unintended                                                               
consequences.   In response to  a further question, he  said he'd                                                               
have to do  more research regarding the  underlying concern about                                                               
the application of Catholic canon  law before being able to speak                                                               
to whether  Conceptual Amendment 1 would  adequately address that                                                               
concern.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HOLMES  surmised that  because Catholic  canon law                                                               
isn't -  to the  best of  her knowledge  - contained  in Alaska's                                                               
statutes  or  case  law, that  Conceptual  Amendment  1  wouldn't                                                               
really accomplish the stated goal.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE   KELLER,   concurring   with   that   point   and                                                               
acknowledging that Conceptual Amendment 1  is broader than he had                                                               
in mind, withdrew Conceptual Amendment 1.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  GRUENBERG  offered  an example  of  a  horrendous                                                               
spousal-rape-and-subsequent-divorce  case  he was  involved  with                                                               
many years ago  that was ultimately settled but in  which had the                                                               
courts  allowed for  the application  of Jewish  law, a  terrific                                                               
injustice could have  resulted, and pointed out  that conflict of                                                               
laws constitutes a  very complex body of law,  one derived solely                                                               
from judicial  rulings, upon  which a  bill such  as HB  88 would                                                               
have a [huge] effect.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
2:17:54 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS. SAWYER indicated  that Janet Levy - who spoke  during HB 88's                                                               
last hearing  - relayed  in an e-mail  that her  attorneys assert                                                               
that the  [U.S. Supreme Court] has  made it clear that  under the                                                               
First  Amendment,  intra-church/mosque/synagogue disputes  remain                                                               
internal unless neutral principles of law can be applied.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR GATTO  offered his belief  that HB  88 is meant  to address                                                               
conflicts between religious law and secular law.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
MS. SAWYER pointed out, however,  that HB 88 only addresses civil                                                               
law,  not religious  law, though  she acknowledged  that in  some                                                               
foreign jurisdictions,  civil law is  associated/intertwined with                                                               
religious law.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GRUENBERG  indicated a belief that  how the courts                                                               
address [various potentially-conflicting laws]  is too complex to                                                               
be laid  out in statute because  all such cases are  fact driven,                                                               
and that  to attempt  to do  so would  be Procrustean  in nature.                                                               
The principles,  whether they be equitable  principles or choice-                                                               
of-law principles or contractual  principles, are all designed to                                                               
make  the  legal  system  work  in  instances  involving  private                                                               
disputes.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KELLER offered  his belief  that the  bill merely                                                               
states a  legislative preference  that the courts  not use  a law                                                               
that isn't derived from the constitutions.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE LYNN  disclosed that he is  a practicing Catholic,                                                               
and relayed that he intends to vote "yes" on HB 88.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  HOLMES, after  mentioning  that  she agrees  with                                                               
many  of Representative  Gruenberg's comments,  expressed concern                                                               
that  from the  discussion she's  heard thus  far, the  committee                                                               
appears to  be trying to  protect certain types of  religious law                                                               
while  outlawing other  types of  religious  law -  specifically,                                                               
trying  to  protect  Catholic  canon law  and  Jewish  law  while                                                               
outlawing Shari'a law.   For her, she relayed,  this raises legal                                                               
questions - for  example, how would one draw that  line - as well                                                               
as  ethical  and  moral concerns.    Furthermore,  as  previously                                                               
mentioned, the bill is addressing a  very complex area of law and                                                               
will therefore have huge  consequences for international business                                                               
and for  Alaska's reputation as  a welcoming business  venue, and                                                               
will   complicate   contractual   choice-of-law   decisions   for                                                               
individuals.   Extensive research illustrates that  even when the                                                               
issue of shari'a is raised  in court, judges are already refusing                                                               
to apply  it, stating that  in this country, this  country's laws                                                               
and  constitution apply.   Therefore,  by  attempting to  protect                                                               
against something that isn't actually  happening in the courts, a                                                               
whole   host  of   problems  regarding   conflict  of   laws  and                                                               
international  business  will  instead  be created.    For  these                                                               
reasons, she relayed, she would be voting against HB 88.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR GATTO,  citing England  as an  example, argued  that judges                                                               
don't always make correct decisions,  and offered his belief that                                                               
even incorrect judicial rulings can create legal precedence.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
2:27:19 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  THOMPSON referred  to the  DOL's March  21, 2011,                                                               
legal opinion included in members'  packets - specifically to the                                                               
portion  that  read,  "HB  88 might  affect  a  foreign  entity's                                                               
willingness  to do  business with  individuals  or businesses  in                                                               
Alaska if  it knows that provisions  of the contract may  be void                                                               
by law should HB 88 become  law" - and expressed concern that the                                                               
bill  would  hurt  Alaskans economically  when  they  attempt  to                                                               
conduct business with  entities outside of Alaska.   He indicated                                                               
a  desire,  though, to  ensure  that  foreign laws  aren't  being                                                               
applied in Alaska.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR GATTO offered  his belief that it's rare  for an individual                                                               
to enter into a contract with a foreign entity.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  HOLMES  explained  that   that's  not  the  case;                                                               
instead, contracts  between individuals and foreign  entities are                                                               
used  in  a  lot  of  situations, such  as  those  pertaining  to                                                               
employment,  travel,   the  purchase   of  goods   and  services,                                                               
warrantees, and  many other,  everyday-type situations  that most                                                               
people don't think of as involving a contract.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  PRUITT observed  that  Article. VI.  of the  U.S.                                                               
Constitution says in part:                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     This Constitution,  and the Laws  of the  United States                                                                    
     which  shall  be made  in  Pursuance  thereof; and  all                                                                    
     Treaties  made,  or  which shall  be  made,  under  the                                                                    
     Authority of  the United States,  shall be  the supreme                                                                    
     Law of  the Land; and  the Judges in every  State shall                                                                    
     be  bound thereby,  any Thing  in  the Constitution  or                                                                    
     Laws of any State to the Contrary Notwithstanding.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  PRUITT,  referring  to the  aforementioned  legal                                                               
opinion,  indicated  concern that  HB  88  would have  unintended                                                               
consequences, and  suggested that the  issues raised thus  far be                                                               
researched  further   to  ensure   that  business   and  economic                                                               
opportunities for Alaskans won't be endangered by the bill.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KELLER acknowledged that  conflict of laws appears                                                               
to  be a  very complicated  area of  the law,  and observed  that                                                               
HB 88  doesn't  ban  consideration  of foreign  law,  merely  the                                                             
application of foreign law.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MS.  SAWYER, in  response to  Representative Thompson,  explained                                                               
that  to  address the  concern  expressed  in the  aforementioned                                                               
legal  opinion, language  was added  in the  House State  Affairs                                                               
Standing  Committee  providing  an  exemption  for  corporations,                                                               
partnerships,  and  other  forms  of business  association.    In                                                               
conclusion,  she  offered  her  understanding  that  there  is  a                                                               
shari'a court operating in Texas.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
2:35:06 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KELLER moved  to  report  the proposed  committee                                                               
substitute (CS) for HB 88,  Version 27-LS0333\D, Bailey, 3/30/11,                                                               
out  of   committee  with  individual  recommendations   and  the                                                               
accompanying fiscal notes.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR GATTO said there was an objection to the motion.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
A  roll   call  vote  was   taken.     Representatives  Thompson,                                                               
Gruenberg,  Lynn, Keller,  Pruitt, and  Gatto voted  in favor  of                                                               
reporting the  bill from committee.   Representative Holmes voted                                                               
against it.  Therefore, CSHB  88(JUD) was reported from the House                                                               
Judiciary Standing Committee by a vote of 6-1.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
The committee took an at-ease from 2:36 p.m. to 2:39 p.m.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
        HB 1 - POLICY FOR SECURING HEALTH CARE SERVICES                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
2:39:24 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR GATTO announced  that the final order of  business would be                                                               
HOUSE BILL NO.  1, "An Act stating a public  policy that allows a                                                               
person  to choose  or decline  any mode  of securing  health care                                                               
services."  [Before the committee was CSHB 1(HSS).]                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  LYNN mentioned  that he  is one  of HB  1's joint                                                               
prime sponsors.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
2:40:01 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
KAREN  SAWYER, Staff,  Representative  Carl  Gatto, Alaska  State                                                               
Legislature, on  behalf of  Representative Gatto,  one of  HB 1's                                                               
joint  prime sponsors,  said HB  1 is  about state's  rights, and                                                               
indicated that  the joint  prime sponsors  are alleging  that the                                                               
federal  Patient  Protection  and  Affordable  Care  Act  (PPACA)                                                               
infringes    upon    the    constitutional   rights    of    U.S.                                                               
citizens/residents  by   mandating  that  everyone   either  have                                                               
qualifying healthcare  coverage or pay  a tax penalty,  that this                                                               
mandate   exceeds   the   federal   government's   constitutional                                                               
authority,  and that  Congress doesn't  have the  authority under                                                               
the  Commerce  Clause  to  regulate inactivity.    The  PPACA  is                                                               
challenging Alaska's authority  as a state, and thus it  is up to                                                               
Alaska to defend itself from  such federal "takeover," she added.                                                               
House  Bill 1  - by  establishing  in Alaska's  uncodified law  a                                                               
state policy  that a person  has the  right to choose  or decline                                                               
any  mode of  obtaining  healthcare services  without penalty  or                                                               
threat of penalty  - would ensure that everyone in  Alaska is and                                                               
shall continue  to be  free from  federal mandates  regarding the                                                               
selection of  health insurance, and  would preclude any  State of                                                               
Alaska employee from enforcing any  penalty assessed in violation                                                               
of this policy.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MS.  SAWYER,   referring  to  a   handout  in   members'  packets                                                               
containing examples, noted  that language in HB  1 - specifically                                                               
in proposed AS 44.99.130(b) -  stipulates that the proposed state                                                               
policy  shall  not  apply  to  healthcare  services  provided  or                                                               
required by the  state, a political subdivision of  the state, or                                                               
a court  of the state, and  may not impair a  contract right that                                                               
provides healthcare  services.  Members' packets  also include an                                                               
explanation  of the  change incorporated  into CSHB  1(HSS), that                                                               
being  the addition  of language  in proposed  AS 44.99.130(c)(3)                                                               
stipulating  that as  used in  proposed AS  44.99.130, the  term,                                                               
"penalty" is  not referring  to one's liability  for the  cost of                                                               
healthcare  services.   She  offered  her  understanding that  at                                                               
least 40  states thus far  have introduced legislation  to limit,                                                               
alter, or oppose specific federal  actions [related to the PPACA]                                                               
- including  that of mandating  the purchase of insurance  - with                                                               
the  states   of  Virginia,  Idaho,  Utah,   Georgia,  Louisiana,                                                               
Arizona, [Oklahoma,] Missouri, and  North Carolina having already                                                               
passed [such legislation].                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
MS.  SAWYER,  in  response  to   questions,  indicated  that  the                                                               
aforementioned  handout  containing  examples  was  derived  from                                                               
material pertaining to similar legislation  in another state; and                                                               
that  the  exemption provided  for  in  proposed AS  44.99.130(b)                                                               
would not apply to private  employers/employees - in other words,                                                               
the  state  policy outlined  in  proposed  AS 44.99.130(a)  would                                                               
apply to private employers/employees.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  GATTO, speaking  as one  of HB  1's joint  prime sponsors,                                                               
concurred with the latter point.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
2:48:05 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GRUENBERG  indicated that he  didn't want HB  1 to                                                               
be  misinterpreted   as  allowing   someone  to   refuse  medical                                                               
treatment for his/her child, or  as allowing someone to refuse to                                                               
pay for medical treatment.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR GATTO offered  his belief that the requirement  of a parent                                                               
to care  for his/her  child wouldn't be  diminished by  the bill,                                                               
and indicated that  he would be amenable to amending  the bill in                                                               
order to ensure that that is actually the case.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KELLER  observed  that proposed  AS  44.99.130(a)                                                               
says in  part, "a person has  the right to choose  or decline any                                                               
mode of obtaining health care  services without penalty or threat                                                               
of  penalty", and  that language  in proposed  AS 44.99.130(c)(2)                                                               
defines the phrase,  "mode of obtaining" to  mean either directly                                                               
purchasing  healthcare services  from a  healthcare provider,  or                                                               
purchasing insurance  to cover the  cost of  healthcare services.                                                               
House Bill  1, therefore, addresses the  purchasing of healthcare                                                               
services  [or the  purchasing of  insurance  to cover  healthcare                                                               
services], not the obtaining of medical treatment.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR GATTO and MS. SAWYER concurred.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR GATTO, in  response to a question, offered  his belief that                                                               
under the  bill, a union member  would have the right  to decline                                                               
any insurance coverage provided by  the union, surmising that the                                                               
other  union  members  would  have   to  absorb  any  extra  cost                                                               
associated with that member's declination.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE   HOLMES  expressed   concern  that   because  the                                                               
proposed state  policy uses the  phrase, "a person has  the right                                                               
to  choose  or   decline  any  mode  of   obtaining  health  care                                                               
services",  the bill  would allow  an employee  to dictate  which                                                               
insurance coverage his/her employer must provide him/her with.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  GATTO offered  his understanding  that the  employee could                                                               
only accept or decline the mode that was being offered.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HOLMES pointed out,  though, that the bill doesn't                                                               
say,  "accept" -  it instead  says, "choose".   Furthermore,  the                                                               
proposed  state  policy  doesn't   specify  that  the  particular                                                               
healthcare services being obtained must be legal in Alaska.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
2:59:52 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
STACIE  KRALY,  Chief  Assistant  Attorney  General  -  Statewide                                                               
Section  Supervisor,  Human   Services  Section,  Civil  Division                                                               
(Juneau),  Department  of Law  (DOL),  concurred  that the  word,                                                               
"choose"  has a  different connotation  than the  word, "accept",                                                               
and   indicated  that   that   point  ought   to  be   clarified,                                                               
particularly  if  the intent  of  the  bill  is to  address  only                                                               
offered modes of obtaining healthcare services.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR GATTO suggested that they  change the word, "choose" to the                                                               
word, "accept", and add the word "offered".                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MS. KRALY  surmised that such  changes would address  the concern                                                               
that  under the  bill  as currently  written,  an employee  could                                                               
dictate which  insurance coverage  his/her employer  must provide                                                               
him/her with.   On the  issue of healthcare services  that aren't                                                               
legal in Alaska,  she ventured that this probably  isn't going to                                                               
be a  problem because  of the definitions  of the  terms, "health                                                               
care  services"  and  "penalty"  provided  for  via  proposed  AS                                                               
44.99.130(c)(1) and (3), and because  the term, "penalty" as used                                                               
in the bill pertains to the  preclusion of any penalty that might                                                               
be  assessed a  person  simply because  he/she exercised  his/her                                                               
right  to  choose  or  decline a  mode  of  obtaining  healthcare                                                               
services.   In  conclusion, she  reiterated her  belief that  the                                                               
suggested change would provide clarity.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HOLMES  ventured that  perhaps they also  ought to                                                               
alter  the definitions  in  proposed subsection  (c).   She  then                                                               
asked whether  the bill would  also apply to other  federal laws,                                                               
not just the PPACA.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
MS. KRALY  surmised that  HB 1 potentially  could apply  to other                                                               
federal  laws  that address  the  issue  of obtaining  healthcare                                                               
services, since  the bill isn't  exclusively tagged to  or tasked                                                               
to the PPACA.  In response  to a question, she offered her belief                                                               
that under  HB 1 as  currently written,  a person would  have the                                                               
right  to accept  or  decline any  mode  of obtaining  healthcare                                                               
services, regardless of who offers the mode.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HOLMES  disagreed, pointing  out that  proposed AS                                                               
44.99.130(b)(1) stipulates  that the proposed state  policy shall                                                               
not  apply to  healthcare services  provided or  required by  the                                                               
state, a  political subdivision of the  state, or a court  of the                                                               
state.                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
MS. KRALY concurred with that clarification.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
3:05:44 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS.  SAWYER, on  the  issue of  healthcare  services that  aren't                                                               
legal   in   Alaska,   questioned   whether   altering   proposed                                                               
AS 44.99.130(c)(1)'s  definition   of  the  term,   "health  care                                                               
services"  by inserting  the word,  "legal"  on page  2, line  2,                                                               
before the phrase, "service or  treatment", would perhaps address                                                               
members' concerns.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
MS. KRALY, indicating that she  would have to research that issue                                                               
further,  posited that  perhaps  it would  be  more important  to                                                               
clarify in the  bill that it is intended to  allow individuals to                                                               
choose not to purchase/have healthcare insurance.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
MS. SAWYER, in  response to a question, clarified  that the PPACA                                                               
just mandates that  everyone have insurance or  be penalized, and                                                               
that the  joint prime sponsors'  concern is that they  don't want                                                               
the federal  government telling Alaskans  that they have to  do a                                                               
particular  thing or  be penalized  for inactivity.   In  further                                                               
response,  she  offered her  understanding  of  what the  penalty                                                               
amount would  be under  the PPACA, noting  that the  amount would                                                               
increase after the first year.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE THOMPSON  - on the  question of whether  under the                                                               
bill, union  members would  have the  right to  decline insurance                                                               
coverage provided  by the union  - pointed out that  [contrary to                                                               
something   mentioned  earlier,]   proposed  AS   44.99.130(b)(2)                                                               
stipulates  that  the proposed  state  policy  may not  impair  a                                                               
contract right that provides healthcare services.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
3:09:37 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR GATTO  made a  motion to adopt  Conceptual Amendment  1, to                                                               
replace the  word, "choose" with  the word, "accept", on  page 1,                                                               
line 9; and to add the word, "offered" to page 1, line 10.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
MS.  SAWYER  observed  that  the  title of  the  bill  should  be                                                               
similarly altered.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR GATTO  - noting that  the drafter would determine  the best                                                               
placement  for  the  added  word,   "offered"  -  clarified  that                                                               
Conceptual Amendment  1 would  also make  a conforming  change to                                                               
the title  on line 1  of page 1.   After ascertaining  that there                                                               
were no objections, he announced  that Conceptual Amendment 1 was                                                               
adopted.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR GATTO  then relayed that  [CSHB 1(HSS), as  amended,] would                                                               
be held over.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
3:11:04 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
ADJOURNMENT                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
There being no further business before the committee, the House                                                                 
Judiciary Standing Committee meeting was adjourned at 3:11 p.m.                                                                 

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
HB1 Sponsor Statement Version M 03-31-11.pdf HJUD 4/1/2011 1:00:00 PM
HB 1
HB1 Explanation of Changes Version A to M 03-31-11.pdf HJUD 4/1/2011 1:00:00 PM
HB 1
HB1 CS (HSS) Version M 03-16-11.pdf HJUD 4/1/2011 1:00:00 PM
HB 1
HB1 Version A 01-18-11.pdf HJUD 4/1/2011 1:00:00 PM
HB 1
HB1 Fiscal Note-DHSS-HCMS 02-24-11.pdf HJUD 4/1/2011 1:00:00 PM
HB 1
HB1 Supporting Documents-Explanation of Application.pdf HJUD 4/1/2011 1:00:00 PM
HB 1
HB1 Supporting Documents-Letter NFIB 02-28-11.pdf HJUD 4/1/2011 1:00:00 PM
HB 1
HB1 Opposing Documents-Letter AARP 02-28-11.pdf HJUD 4/1/2011 1:00:00 PM
HB 1
HB179 Sponsor Statement 03-30-11.pdf HJUD 4/1/2011 1:00:00 PM
HB 179
HB179 Version A 03-09-11.pdf HJUD 4/1/2011 1:00:00 PM
HB 179
HB179 Fiscal Note-DOA-OPA 03-25-11.pdf HJUD 4/1/2011 1:00:00 PM
HB 179
HB179 Fiscal Note-DOA-PDA 03-25-11.pdf HJUD 4/1/2011 1:00:00 PM
HB 179
HB179 Fiscal Note-DOC-OC 03-28-11.pdf HJUD 4/1/2011 1:00:00 PM
HB 179
HB179 Fiscal Note-LAW-CRIM 03-25-11.pdf HJUD 4/1/2011 1:00:00 PM
HB 179
HB179 Supporting Documents 03-17-11.pdf HJUD 4/1/2011 1:00:00 PM
HB 179