Legislature(1993 - 1994)
03/16/1993 03:00 PM L&C
* first hearing in first committee of referral
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
HOUSE LABOR AND COMMERCE STANDING COMMITTEE March 16, 1993 3:00 p.m. MEMBERS PRESENT Rep. Bill Hudson, Chairman Rep. Joe Green, Vice Chairman Rep. Brian Porter Rep. Bill Williams Rep. Eldon Mulder Rep. Jerry Mackie MEMBERS ABSENT Rep. Joe Sitton COMMITTEE CALENDAR HB 179: "An Act relating to motor vehicles and mobile homes; and providing for an effective date." MOVED FROM COMMITTEE HB 54: "An Act relating to eavesdropping, telephone caller identification, and telephone directory listings and solicitations." MOVED FROM COMMITTEE HB 203: "An Act imposing a fee for the administration of the workers' compensation program; and providing for an effective date." HEARD AND HELD IN COMMITTEE Confirmations of the following individuals: Board of Registration for Architects, Engineers, and Land Surveyors - Richard S. Armstrong, Paul Hartig, William W. Mendenhall, Michael H. Schwartz Board of Barbers and Hairdressers - Michelle A. Loptien, Jerry R. Mayfield Alaska Labor Relations Agency - Darrell F. Smith Occupational Safety and Health Review Board - Donald F. Hoff, Jr. Personnel Board - Gary P. Bader WITNESS REGISTER JUANITA HENSLEY, Chief, Driver Services Division of Motor Vehicles Department of Public Safety 5700 E. Tudor Rd. Anchorage, Alaska 99507-1225 269-5559 Position Statement: Supported HB 179 REP. KAY BROWN Alaska State Legislature Room 517, State Capitol Juneau, Alaska 99801-1182 465-4998 Position Statement: Sponsor of HB 54 GAIL GAREY, Lobbyist MCI Telecommunications Corp. 707 17th Street #3900 Denver, CO 80202 (303) 291-6506 Position Statement: Opposed HB 54 (Spoke via teleconference) PAUL ARNOLDT, Director Division of Workers' Compensation Department of Labor P.O. Box 25512 Juneau, Alaska 99802-5512 465-2790 Position Statement: Answered questions on workers' compensation JERRY REINWAND, Lobbyist Alaska Timber Insurance Exchange 2 Marine Way, #219 Juneau, Alaska 99801 586-8966 Position Statement: Opposed HB 203 DAVID THOMPSON, Executive Director Alaska Center for Deaf Adults 731 Gamble, Suite 200 Anchorage, Alaska 99501-3754 276-3456 Position Statement: Supported HB 203 RESA JERREL, Lobbyist National Federation of Independent Business 9159 Skywood Juneau, Alaska 99801 789-4278 Position Statement: Opposed HB 203 JAY FRANK, Lobbyist State Farm and Allstate Insurance 431 N. Franklin St. Juneau, Alaska 99801 586-5777 Position Statement: Opposed HB 203 JOHN GEORGE, Lobbyist National Association of Independent Insurers 9515 Moraine Way Juneau, Alaska 99801 789-0172 Position Statement: Opposed HB 203 JOE POOR, Lobbyist Juneau Chamber of Commerce 124 W. 5th Juneau, Alaska 99801 586-6420 Position Statement: Opposed HB 203 PREVIOUS ACTION BILL: HB 179 SHORT TITLE: MOTOR VEHICLE REGISTRATION, FEES, ETC. BILL VERSION: SPONSOR(S): LABOR & COMMERCE TITLE: "An Act relating to motor vehicles and mobile homes: and providing for an effective date." JRN-DATE JRN-PG ACTION 02/24/93 435 (H) READ THE FIRST TIME/REFERRAL(S) 02/24/93 435 (H) LABOR & COMMERCE, FINANCE 03/09/93 (H) L&C AT 03:00 PM CAPITOL 17 BILL: HB 54 SHORT TITLE: TELEPHONE CONSUMER PROTECTION BILL VERSION: SPONSOR(S): REPRESENTATIVE(S) BROWN,Navarre TITLE: "An Act relating to eavesdropping, telephone caller identification, and telephone directory listings and solicitations." JRN-DATE JRN-PG ACTION 01/14/93 60 (H) READ THE FIRST TIME/REFERRAL(S) 01/14/93 60 (H) LABOR & COMMERCE, JUDICIARY, FINANCE 03/11/93 (H) L&C AT 03:00 PM CAPITOL 17 BILL: HB 203 SHORT TITLE: ADMINISTRATIVE FEE FOR WORKERS' COMP. BILL VERSION: SPONSOR(S): LABOR & COMMERCE TITLE: "An Act imposing a fee for the administration of the workers' compensation program; and providing for an effective date." JRN-DATE JRN-PG ACTION 03/05/93 552 (H) READ THE FIRST TIME/REFERRAL(S) 03/05/93 552 (H) LABOR & COMMERCE, FINANCE 03/11/93 (H) L&C AT 03:00 PM CAPITOL 17 ACTION NARRATIVE TAPE 93-22, SIDE A Number 001 CHAIRMAN HUDSON called the meeting to order at 3:40 p.m. and noted members present. He introduced the first bill for committee consideration. HB 179 - MOTOR VEHICLE REGISTRATION, FEES, ETC. REP. PORTER asked the reason for the increase of three staff members reflected in the fiscal note. Rep. Porter further asked if the Division of Motor Vehicles planned any public information blitz to inform the public on this new fee structure. Number 030 JUANITA HENSLEY, CHIEF, DRIVER SERVICES, DIVISION OF MOTOR VEHICLES, DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC SAFETY, replied that the division expects there to be many complaints from the public necessitating the increase in staff. Ms. Hensley further noted that the division would be revising the registration forms, including to identify this fee as a municipal tax as opposed to a state tax. Number 030 REP. MULDER asked for clarification regarding whether or not registration fees would be increasing. MS. HENSLEY replied that there would be a increase in registration fees only in those areas that have a municipal registration tax. Number 055 CHAIRMAN HUDSON asked if Rep. Mulder was satisfied with section 6 of the bill dealing with mobile homes. REP. MULDER replied that he was. REP. PORTER moved for passage of CSHB 179(L&C) with fiscal notes and individual recommendations. No objections were heard, it was so ordered. CONFIRMATIONS Number 104 CHAIRMAN HUDSON brought the following individual names before the committee for CONFIRMATION: ARCHITECTS, ENGINEERS, AND LAND SURVEYORS RICHARD ARMSTRONG PAUL HARTIG WILLIAM MENDENHALL MICHAEL SCHWARTZ BOARD OF BARBERS AND HAIRDRESSERS MICHELLE LOPTIEN JERRY MAYFIELD ALASKA LABOR RELATIONS AGENCY DARRELL SMITH PERSONNEL BOARD GARY BADER OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY AND HEALTH REVIEW BOARD DONALD HOFF, JR. REP. MACKIE moved that the persons listed above be confirmed. No objections were expressed, it was so ordered. HB 54 - TELEPHONE CONSUMER PROTECTION Number 179 REP. KAY BROWN, PRIME SPONSOR OF HB 54, noted that at the last committee hearing on this bill the committee discussed the proposed committee substitute (CS) which deletes section 2 and focuses on two main areas: caller identification and the other unlawful telephone solicitation. REP. BROWN further noted that at the last meeting a number of questions were raised that she attempted to answer in the memo the committee had been given. (This memo is on file in the committee room until the end of session.) Number 219 REP. MULDER moved to adopt CSHB 54(L&C). No objections to the adoption of the CS were noted, it was so ordered. Number 226 REP. GREEN informed the committee that TOM ROY of the ALASKA TELEPHONE ASSOCIATION was not able to be at this meeting but wanted it to be known that he opposed the bill as currently written, but with some compromise that he could support it. Number 245 GAIL GAREY, MCI TELECOMMUNICATIONS, testified via teleconference in opposition to this bill, especially the sections regulating telephone solicitation. Ms. Garey cited the Federal Communications Commission regulation as the answer to the problems brought up by consumers. (Note: There were some technical problems regarding Ms. Garey's testimony on the teleconference network.) MS. GAREY noted that this further prohibition would only duplicate what the federal government already did. REP. BROWN asked Ms. Garey if MCI currently markets any products or services in Alaska. MS. GAREY replied that MCI does not have the authority to market in Alaska on an intra-state basis, but they do offer 800 service. REP. GREEN suggested that HB 54 be held for gathering further information. Number 405 REP. BROWN noted that both Reps. Green and Porter were on the next committee of referral and she would prefer to have the bill move on and do further work in that committee. Number 411 REP. MULDER stated he supported section 1 of the bill, but he thought sections 2 and 3 send a wrong message to businesses that makes it difficult to do business here. Rep. Mulder moved to delete sections 2 and 3 of HB 54. Number 429 REP. BROWN stated she believed that sections 2 and 3 will have a positive effect on business since it will in effect weed out those persons who don't wish to be telemarketed. REP. PORTER said he was not completely convinced regarding the need for sections 2 and 3, but he did not wish to see them taken out at this time. Number 500 Discussion ensued regarding how sections 2 and 3 would affect consumers and business. TAPE 93-22, SIDE B Number 001 Discussion continued. Number 073 REP. MULDER moved to delete sections 2 and 3 of HB 54. No objections were heard, it was so ordered. Number 100 REP. PORTER moved for passage of CSHB 54(L&C) as amended with zero fiscal note and effective date. No objections were noted, it was so ordered. Number 130 HB 203 - ADMINISTRATIVE FEE FOR WORKERS' COMP. CHAIRMAN HUDSON noted that at the last meeting there were deep concerns from the community as to the effects of HB 203. Chairman Hudson believed that the committee should come up with a measure that would be both constructive as well as satisfy the reasons why this bill was drafted in the first place. Number 137 PAUL ARNOLDT, DIRECTOR, DIVISION OF WORKERS' COMPENSATION, DEPARTMENT OF LABOR, stated that as a result of the last committee hearing, he met with some of the members of the industry on this issue. At that meeting, the group discussed the major issues facing workers' compensation and how it affects business; the fact that there is a shortage of funding; what alternatives for funding exist, etc. MR. ARNOLDT said it was his understanding that the representatives of business left the meeting with the charge that they contact their constituency and get a consensus on where the members stood on the various issues. Unfortunately, the time frame was too short to allow that sort of extensive polling before today's meeting. MR. ARNOLDT discussed further the ramifications of the underfunding of the Division of Workers' Compensation. Number 269 JERRY REINWAND, ALASKA TIMBER INSURANCE EXCHANGE, testified in opposition to any fee increases on business. Mr. Reinwand further stated that he believes the division has a budget problem that needs to be addressed through the general fund, but not on the backs of business by means of a tax of any other increase. FORMER REPRESENTATIVE DAVID THOMPSON, ALASKA CENTER FOR DEAF AND BLIND ADULTS, testified in support of more funding for the Division of Workers' Compensation. Number 331 RESA JERREL, NATIONAL FEDERATION OF INDEPENDENT BUSINESS (NFIB), testified that 92 percent of the members of NFIB are opposed to increasing the fees business has to pay for workers' compensation. Number 389 CHAIRMAN HUDSON stated that it was not his intention to move HB 203 out of committee today. The Chairman's intention was to address what the original purpose of the bill was to find a mechanism whereby industry could help locate indiscriminate spending or improper spending. Otherwise, if adequate force is absent, industry will have to pay more and more in claims. Number 408 JAY FRANK, STATE FARM INSURANCE AND ALLSTATE INSURANCE, echoed comments by Ms. Jerrel in opposition to HB 203. Number 420 JOHN GEORGE, NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF INDEPENDENT INSURERS, also echoed the comments of Mr. Jerrel and Mr. Frank. Mr. George believes it was appropriate to look at which services the division is providing that are deserving of funding and which are not. Mr. George said he plans on asking his industry to help home prioritize the services provided by the division. Number 444 CHAIRMAN HUDSON noted that there is a tremendous amount of workmen's compensation fraud happening across the nation. Number 457 JOE POOR, JUNEAU CHAMBER OF COMMERCE, testified that anytime you add cost for doing business in Juneau it hurts the economy. He further stated that workers' compensation is the most expensive part of doing business. Mr. Poor stated his opposition to HB 203. Number 570 CHAIRMAN HUDSON again stated that this bill was an attempt to open the lines of communication between business, the insurance industry, and government in an attempt to help government streamline its programs and help make the business climate more favorable especially in light of the economy. It is not the wishes of the chairman to simply raise the costs of doing business in the state. CHAIRMAN HUDSON adjourned the meeting at 5:15 p.m.