Legislature(1995 - 1996)
03/01/1995 03:08 PM L&C
* first hearing in first committee of referral
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
HOUSE LABOR & COMMERCE STANDING COMMITTEE March 1, 1995 3:08 p.m. MEMBERS PRESENT Representative Kott, Chairman Representative Rokeberg, Vice Chairman Representative Jerry Sanders Representative Kim Elton Representative Beverly Masek Representative Gene Kubina MEMBERS ABSENT Representative Brian Porter COMMITTEE CALENDAR HB 140: "An Act relating to surety bonds required of certain fish processors." PASSED OUT OF COMMITTEE HB 17: "An Act relating to the titles that describe the two principal executive officers of electric and telephone cooperatives." PASSED OUT OF COMMITTEE HB 162: "An Act related to the authority of certain beverage dispensary licensees to stock alcoholic beverages in guest rooms." PASSED OUT OF COMMITTEE HB 146: "An Act relating to sled dog race classics." SCHEDULED BUT NOT HEARD WITNESS REGISTER REPRESENTATIVE ALAN AUSTERMAN Alaska State Legislature State Capitol Room 434 Juneau, AK 99811-1182 Telephone: (907) 465-2487 POSITION STATEMENT: Prime Sponsor HB 140 BOB BARTHOLOMEW, Deputy Director Income & Excise Audit Division Department of Revenue P.O. Box 110420 Juneau, AK 99811-0420 Telephone: (907) 465-5364 POSITION STATEMENT: Provided information on HB 140 ROD MOURANT, Legislative Assistant to Representative Pete Kott Alaska State Legislature State Capitol, Room 432 Juneau, AK 99801-1182 Telephone: (907) 465-3777 POSITION STATEMENT: Provided information on HB 140 and gave the sponsor statement for HB 162 and DONNA PARKER, Fisheries Specialist Division of Economic Development Department of Commerce & Economic Development P.O. Box 110804 Juneau, AK 99811-0804 Telephone: (907) 4655464 POSITION STATEMENT: Provided information on HB 140 JEFF LOGAN, Legislative Assistant to Representative Joe Green Alaska State Legislature State Capitol Room 24 Telephone: (907) 465-4931 POSITION STATEMENT: Provided sponsor statement for HB 17 DAVE HUTCHENS, Executive Director Alaska Rural Electric Cooperative Association 703 West Tudor, Suite 200 Anchorage, AK 99503 Telephone: (907) 463-3636 POSITION STATEMENT: Supported HB 17 MIKE MONAGLE, Supervisor Records and Licensing Division of Banking, Securities & Corporations Department of Commerce & Economic Development P.O. Box 110808 Juneau, AK 99811-0608 Telephone: (907) 465-3257 POSITION STATEMENT: Provided information on HB 17 PREVIOUS ACTION BILL: HB 140 SHORT TITLE: SMALL FISH PROCESSOR SURETY BONDS SPONSOR(S): REPRESENTATIVE(S) AUSTERMAN, Elton, Williams JRN-DATE JRN-PG ACTION 02/01/95 199 (H) READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRAL(S) 02/01/95 199 (H) FSH, L&C 02/15/95 (H) FSH AT 03:30 PM CAPITOL 124 02/20/95 (H) FSH AT 05:00 PM CAPITOL 124 02/20/95 (H) MINUTE(FSH) 02/21/95 431 (H) COSPONSOR(S): ELTON 02/22/95 445 (H) FSH RPT CS(FSH) 2DP 1NR 02/22/95 445 (H) DP: OGAN, ELTON 02/22/95 445 (H) NR: AUSTERMAN 02/22/95 445 (H) ZERO FISCAL NOTE (REV) 03/01/95 (H) L&C AT 03:00 PM CAPITOL 17 BILL: HB 17 SHORT TITLE: OFFICERS OF UTILITY COOPERATIVES SPONSOR(S): REPRESENTATIVE(S) GREEN JRN-DATE JRN-PG ACTION 01/06/95 25 (H) PREFILE RELEASED 01/16/95 25 (H) READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRAL(S) 01/16/95 25 (H) STATE AFFAIRS, LABOR & COMMERCE 02/07/95 (H) STA AT 08:00 AM CAPITOL 102 02/07/95 (H) MINUTE(STA) 02/10/95 293 (H) STA RPT CS(STA) NEW TITLE 6DP 1NR 02/10/95 294 (H) DP: JAMES, PORTER, GREEN, ROBINSON 02/10/95 294 (H) DP: WILLIS, OGAN 02/10/95 294 (H) NR: IVAN 02/10/95 294 (H) ZERO FISCAL NOTE (DCED) 02/10/95 294 (H) REFERRED TO LABOR & COMMERCE 03/01/95 (H) L&C AT 03:00 PM CAPITOL 17 BILL: HB 162 SHORT TITLE: ALCOHOL SALES IN HOTEL ROOMS SPONSOR(S): REPRESENTATIVE(S) KOTT, Toohey, James JRN-DATE JRN-PAGE ACTION 02/08/95 272 (H) READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRAL(S) 02/08/95 272 (H) ITT, L&C 02/16/95 407 (H) COSPONSOR(S): JAMES 02/28/95 (H) ITT AT 02:30 PM CAPITOL 408 02/28/95 (H) MINUTE(ITT) 03/01/95 526 (H) ITT RPT 4DP 2NR 03/01/95 526 (H) DP: KOTT, PORTER, JAMES, ROBINSON 03/01/95 526 (H) NR: MASEK, AUSTERMAN 03/01/95 527 (H) ZERO FISCAL NOTE (REV) 03/01/95 (H) L&C AT 03:00 PM CAPITOL 17 BILL: HB 146 SHORT TITLE: SLED DOG RACE CLASSIC SPONSOR(S): REPRESENTATIVE(S) FOSTER, Phillips, Mulder, Navarre, Brice Grussendorf, Toohey, Ivan JRN-DATE JRN-PG ACTION 02/03/95 235 (H) READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRAL(S) 02/03/95 235 (H) CRA, L&C 02/13/95 343 (H) COSPONSOR(S): IVAN 02/14/95 (H) CRA AT 01:00 PM CAPITOL 124 02/14/95 (H) MINUTE(CRA) 02/15/95 365 (H) CRA RPT 4DP 1NR 02/15/95 366 (H) DP: MACKIE, ELTON, IVAN, NICHOLIA 02/15/95 366 (H) NR: AUSTERMAN 02/15/95 366 (H) ZERO FISCAL NOTE (REV) 02/27/95 (H) L&C AT 03:00 PM CAPITOL 17 02/27/95 (H) MINUTE(L&C) 03/01/95 (H) L&C AT 03:00 PM CAPITOL 17 ACTION NARRATIVE TAPE 95-12, SIDE A Number 000 The House Labor & Commerce Standing Committee Meeting was called to order by Chairman Pete Kott at 3:08 p.m. Members present at the call to order were Representatives Kott, Rokeberg, Elton, Masek and Kubina. Representatives Porter and Sanders were absent. CHAIRMAN PETE KOTT stated that there was a quorum present. He announced the meeting was on teleconference. Representative Sanders joined the meeting directly after the call to order. HB 140 - SMALL FISH PROCESSOR SURETY BONDS Number 017 REPRESENTATIVE ALAN AUSTERMAN, PRIME SPONSOR OF HB 140, stated that over the years the fishing industry has changed from large conglomerates monopolizing the industry to today's small businessman that are starting to realize the necessity for marketing and processing in mixture. The present economy today is starting to require that fisherman start marketing their own fish, eliminating the need for the middle man. The small fisherman will not be processing the volume that the that the large conglomerates do. He has introduced this bill to reduce the cost of the surety bond from $10,000 to $2,000 for those processors who are processing 30,000 pounds of fish or less. Representative Austerman noted that this bill went through the Special Committee on Fisheries with a CS offered 2-22-95, for HB 140. CHAIRMAN KOTT entertained a motion to adopt CSHB 140(FSH) for review. He asked if there was an objection. Hearing none, he stated that they did have before them the CS for HB 140 version C dated 2-22-95. REPRESENTATIVE AUSTERMAN explained that the original bill did not include an amount to satisfy the final judgment if the processor were in default, they added this amount in the CS. BOB BARTHOLOMEW, DEPUTY DIRECTOR, INCOME AND EXCISE AUDIT DIVISION, DEPARTMENT OF REVENUE, stated that the Department of Revenue prepared a zero fiscal note and didn't see any operating problems. REPRESENTATIVE NORMAN ROKEBERG asked how much the premium was for the bond. MR. BARTHOLOMEW stated that the premium would be paid by the person or entity being bonded. REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG asked if this was a large economic burden. Number 170 REPRESENTATIVE KIM ELTON commented that fisherman want to add value to their business. He said instead of just being a harvester of a raw resource, they feel they can enhance their ability to make money out of the industry. This bill lowers the burden on those who want to enter the processing end of the industry. REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG asked if anyone knew what the premium was on a $10,000 bond. CHAIRMAN KOTT answered that it was about a 1 percent premium. ROD MOURANT, ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT TO REPRESENTATIVE PETE KOTT, stated that the estimate three to four years ago was a 1 percent ratio of cost to coverage. REPRESENTATIVE JERRY SANDERS clarified that on $10,000 it was $100. MR. MOURANT explained that it was an extremely low premium because the default rate had gone down considerably. There use to be a high incidence of non payment of wages by out of state fish processors. This is an attempt to guarantee that the workers and fisherman receive payment for the goods and services they provide. REPRESENTATIVE SANDERS asked how much 30,000 pounds of fish cost. He asked if a $2,000 bond would cover 30,000 pounds of fish. Number 238 REPRESENTATIVE ELTON replied no. REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG asked who was being protected with the bond, the purchaser or the seller. MR. BARTHOLOMEW answered that the bond was intended to protect the person that had provided labor to the processor, or to the fisherman that had sold fish to a processor. Number 252 CHAIRMAN KOTT asked Mr. Bartholomew to explain how the Department of Revenue works the bonding mechanism. MR. BARTHOLOMEW explained that if the employee or fisherman has not been compensated by the employer, they contact the Commissioner of Administration and the Income and Excise Audit Division and initiate action on the bond. Number 257 CHAIRMAN KOTT queried that if there wasn't a claim within two years, the bond was returned. MR. BARTHOLOMEW stated that the bond is renewed every two years, only if there hasn't been a claim against the bond. He stated that for all practical purposes, the bond remains with the Department of Revenue in the form of the certificate of deposit (CD) or an updated bond issued by an insurance company. Number 257 CHAIRMAN KOTT asked if the CD or bond draws interest. MR. BARTHOLOMEW answered that the interest earned on the securities accrues to the person that provided for them, not to the state of Alaska. Number 284 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG asked why not do away with the bond, if we want to get rid of the burden on small processors. MR. BARTHOLOMEW replied that one reason to have the bond, is that the department maintains a list of whose bonds have been attached by people not compensated. Number 295 REPRESENTATIVE ELTON noted that if a company is in default, the size of the bond grows. The bond itself offers a certain amount of protection with the provision that the bond grows if the company is in default. He explained that it provides further protection to employees or fish sellers that may not know the history of the company. Number 305 REPRESENTATIVE AUSTERMAN pointed out that he would not like to see the bond dropped. He stated that for a clean operator the bond is $10,000, other operators get penalized. NUMBER 314 REPRESENTATIVE SANDERS observed that if someone was in default, their bond goes up the next time. This doesn't take care of their obligations of the first default. He stated the bond is higher if they ever apply for another, if they come back. REPRESENTATIVE AUSTERMAN commented that they didn't want to penalize the clean operators. Number 324 REPRESENTATIVE SANDERS asked if there were that many people wanting to process fish that didn't have $100. REPRESENTATIVE AUSTERMAN stated that he wasn't sure if that figure was correct. If 40 percent were actually putting up $10,000, that didn't sound right. Number 329 MR. BARTHOLOMEW stated that normally it's harder for a new business to get an insurance company to bond them. He stated that new business are often required to put up their own equity for the bonds. Number 339 CHAIRMAN KOTT asked how many CDs the department held. MR. BARTHOLOMEW answered that currently they had 550 bonds, of those 155 were CDs. CHAIRMAN KOTT commented that theoretically those 155 CDs could be the result of a new business' inability to get bonded. REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG asked what it cost the state to process such a diminutive item. MR. BARTHOLOMEW answered that the cost to the state was very small. He said that it definitely takes the time of some clerical people and tax examiners, but it's a small part of a much bigger program. He pointed out that there were seven claims against bonds last year for a total of $75,000. Number 397 DONNA PARKER, FISHERIES SPECIALIST, DIVISION OF ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT, DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT, stated that she had been preparing a direct marketing manual for fishermen who want to market their own fish. She stated that she has interviewed dozens of fisherman as well as their buyers who are already doing this. The up front costs of licensing, permits, and things of this nature were considered a natural impediment to getting their operations off the ground. She stated that this legislation would be applauded by them. Number 422 CHAIRMAN KOTT referred to the letter Ms. Parker handed out. It states that the purpose of the bond is to protect fisherman and processor workers from companies that don't pay them in full. He asked if she felt that this purpose would be satisfied by reducing the bond from $10,000 to $2,000. MS. PARKER replied that these fisherman were only processing their own fish. They are not buying it from anyone else. In many cases, these are family operations or single person operations that don't have employees, and this would protect them too. Number 442 CHAIRMAN KOTT asked why 30,000 pounds was selected versus 50,000 or 100,000. REPRESENTATIVE ELTON explained that numbers are arbitrary. The history of the bonding process was that $10,000 was working well for the larger processors, and for the smaller processors $2,000 will work well. REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG asked if the Department of Commerce would consider doing away with it entirely for the small processor. MS. PARKER answered that she supported the sponsor's statement. REPRESENTATIVE SANDERS inquired if it would better serve the process if they left it at 10,000 for those with employees, and dropped it for those without. MS. PARKER responded that perhaps they could be totally exempt if they didn't have employees and they could prove that. CHAIRMAN KOTT asked how they keep track of the number of pounds processed. MS. PARKER replied that fish tickets were used. Number 483 REPRESENTATIVE ELTON agreed with Representative Sanders. He said that they are not only protecting the employees, they are protecting the seller. REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG commented this was like red tape. He said that if they were trying to help out small business people, they should get rid of this and not just lower it 80 percent. MS. PARKER stated that it was just brought to her attention that the statute includes an exemption from the bonding requirement for those with no employees. REPRESENTATIVE AUSTERMAN stated that he would consider it a friendly amendment to exempt anything under 30,000 pounds. Number 520 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG made a motion to move the amendment. REPRESENTATIVE ELTON objected. He explained that, to some extent, he would want to know who is the fly by night company and who isn't. He said there was a benefit in knowing that the processor advertising your fish is going to be around to pay for those fish. Number 520 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG stated that a $2,000 surety bond is no guarantee that the person is going to be successful. REPRESENTATIVE ELTON stated that having been a fisherman, he would be much more comfortable dealing with someone who has shown some amount of responsibility. REPRESENTATIVE AUSTERMAN pointed out that if the $2,000 is not sufficient to cover their claim the first time, it would jump to $10,000 then $20,000, and so on. CHAIRMAN KOTT agreed that there should be some amount of bonding. REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG made a motion to move CSHB 140(FSH), out of committee with individual recommendations and accompanying fiscal notes. Number 558 CHAIRMAN KOTT asked if there were objections. Hearing none, the motion passed. HB 17 - OFFICERS OF UTILITY COOPERATIVES Number 577 JEFF LOGAN, LEGISLATIVE ASSISTANT TO REPRESENTATIVE JOE GREEN, testified on behalf of Representative Green on CSHB 17 (STA). He stated under Section 1. LEGISLATIVE INTENT, the legislature believes that an electric co-op is authorized to expand the types of utility services it offers. He referred to Subsection (b), and said it was the intent of the legislature that the certificates to operate be exclusive as to service areas, rather than permitting electric cooperatives to enter into competition with another provider of the same service. Section 2, subsection (6), expands the list of services that electric coops are able to provide. He said this is dealt with Chapter 10, the Corporations Code. This is not a list of what the Alaska Public Utilities Commission (APUC) would permit or not permit, this is a list of when an electric cooperative is formed, it falls under the corporations code, this is what it can do according to statute. Mr. Logan explained that for many years, cooperatives in rural Alaska have relied on the Federal Rural Electrification Administration (REA) for low interest loans to build facilities to generate and transmit electricity. Last fall, the federal government reorganized the REA and combined it with other agencies and renamed it the Rural Utilities Service (RUS). The new RUS provides loans for water, sewer, electric and telephone facilities. RUS is encouraging electric companies to provide sewer and water services where it's needed in their service areas. Mr. Logan said the problem was Alaska could not take advantage of the new federal changes without this statutory change. TAPE 12, SIDE B Number 000 MR. LOGAN referred to Amendment 1 and said what they did was take "direct satellite television" out of subsection 6, line 29, and create a new subsection 7, including direct satellite television, the effect being that the APUC will not have to approve with the Certificate of Convenience and Necessity but the electric cooperative could still offer that service. REPRESENTATIVE GENE KUBINA queried that direct T.V. wasn't available in Alaska yet, and asked why a utility would need to provide this service. MR. LOGAN replied that Dave Hutchens would respond to that during his testimony. Continuing with the bill, Mr. Logan explained that Section 3, simply states that the cooperative can call the presiding officers of their board any title they want. Section 4 states that if a cooperative accepts both ballots by mail and at a general meeting, the member can vote at one or the other. Number 144 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG asked if utilities, such as Golden Valley and Chugach Electric Association, would be authorized by the legislation to sell water, sewer and satellite services in their jurisdictions. MR. LOGAN stated that they would be authorized by law, not necessarily approved to do so by the APUC. Number 161 DAVID HUTCHENS, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, ALASKA RURAL ELECTRIC COOPERATIVE ASSOCIATION, testified via teleconference in support of HB 17. He reiterated that this expands the powers of electric cooperatives in the authorization section of electric co-ops, give local option on the by laws of titles to be used for the officers of electric and telephone cooperatives, and it makes it clear the articles of incorporation can be amended by a vote by mail. Number 203 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG asked if RUS provides federal loans for rural sewer and water. MR. HUTCHENS answered yes. He stated that there was a substantial amount of money available for investment in sewer and water plants through that program. Number 228 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG commented that in Alaska Mr. Hutchens wanted to develop natural gas distribution and production, also direct satellite T.V., he asked why that was the case. MR. HUTCHENS replied that Naknek Electric is convinced there is natural gas in the area, not enough to interest major companies but enough to provide local service to turn their generators. Number 248 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG asked what the impact would be on the certifications process with APUC, in certain urban areas like Mat- su that have some gas services, and Anchorage, that has Enstar service. MR. HUTCHENS said there wouldn't be competition with Enstar. This would be within their corporate powers, but does not mean they would be authorized by the APUC to engage in that business. He explained that there first would have to be a need for it. Enstar is already providing service, and there wouldn't be a showing of a need for Chugach to go into competition. The situation with the satellite is that the electric cooperatives have access to the National Rural Telecommunications Cooperative (NRTC), which is partner with Hugh's, that provides Direct T.V., Alaska cannot receive this satellite broadcasting system. He said because of the NRTC, the electric cooperatives have access to the programming packages, in effect the cooperatives would simply be the middleman in providing local billing services. Number 300 REPRESENTATIVE ELTON asked if electric co-ops could offer direct television services to communities already being served by cable companies. MR. HUTCHENS answered that was not their intent, they would add to that, "in outside areas certificated to cable television." REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG asked the existing status in the state of Alaska on satellite (indisc.--paper shuffling). MR. HUTCHENS responded that the APUC certificates the cable company as to the service area. They presently don't certificate anyone for direct satellite TV service. They do not want anything in statute that APUC certification was necessary to provide that service. CHAIRMAN KOTT inquired as to the amount of time it would take to receive a Certificate of Cconvenience authorizing them to expand services into water, sewer and gas operations. MR. HUTCHENS replied that it generally takes six months to fix this. MIKE MONAGLE, DIVISION OF BANKING, SECURITIES AND CORPORATIONS, DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT, stated that the department had a proposed amendment purely administrative. He said that they administer (indisc--coughing) under Title 10, which includes other types of cooperative corporations under Chapter 15, Non-Profit Corporations; under Chapter 20, Business Corporations under Chapter 6. All those chapters under Title 10 require that corporations file with the state, on a biannual basis, a report listing the officer's names and addresses for public record. REPRESENTATIVE KUBINA asked if this was currently practiced. MR. MONAGLE answered yes, this being the only chapter that does not file currently. REPRESENTATIVE KUBINA asked what type of fee they would charge. MR. MONAGLE stated that it would be a $60 fee with a $10 late fee. This based on current fees paid by cooperatives under Chapter 15. REPRESENTATIVE KUBINA commented that cooperatives change their officers every year, why have a biannual report. MR. MONAGLE explained that was the purpose for the Alaska post section, providing statutory requirement that in the off year, they file a notice with the division any changes in officers. CHAIRMAN KOTT asked why the filing date was July 2. MR. MONOGUL stated that was the filing cycle all other co-ops under Chapter 15 are on. Number 428 CHAIRMAN KOTT stated the department's amendment would be Amendment 2. REPRESENTATIVE GREEN suggested that the committee adopt Amendment 1, which lists satellite television as another service utilities can provide but does not say it should be regulated by APUC. REPRESENTATIVE ELTON made a motion to move Amendment 1. CHAIRMAN KOTT asked if there were any objections. Number 464 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG objected. He expressed concern that they had not heard testimony from the cable, gas, and satellite representatives. REPRESENTATIVE GREEN asked if his concern was that APUC would allow or provide competition with existing utilities. He explained that the concept behind this was for only those areas that either have failed utilities or don't have utilities at all, why not piggy back them onto a rural electrification system that has the wear with all to make it successful. It's not in any way intended to be competition. Number 510 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG pointed out that he was talking about gas and satellite, not sewer and water. He reiterated that he was concerned about an electrical cooperative which, to a degree, has that ability to be subsidized via grants and federal tax dollars, getting into businesses that can compete directly with private enterprise. REPRESENTATIVE GREEN stated that the gas industry had no problem with this and he could provide a letter stating this if need be. He also stated that the REA system is not a federally subsidized program. The federal government makes loans, those loans are repaid, they are not subsidies. REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG stated that he was looking for jurisdictional boundaries. CHAIRMAN KOTT asked for a roll call vote. Voting for Amendment 1 were Representatives Elton, Sanders, Masek, Kubina and Kott. Representative Rokeberg voted against the amendment. Amendment 1 was adopted. CHAIRMAN KOTT stated that Amendment 2, brings into conformity what is being done in other areas. If this were adopted though, he felt the bill might require a title change as well. REPRESENTATIVE KUBINA added that we might need to relook at the fiscal notes since, the Department of Commerce and Economic Development would be doing some of the work. CHAIRMAN KOTT noted that they would address the fiscal notes in a moment. He announced that they have Amendment 2 before them. REPRESENTATIVE SANDERS made the motion to move Amendment 2. CHAIRMAN KOTT asked if there were objections. Number 549 REPRESENTATIVE KUBINA objected. He didn't feel the state needed to build up more reports, and the electrical users needed to spend $2,000 to give it them. CHAIRMAN KOTT felt that it did offer some continuity to what's currently being done. REPRESENTATIVE ELTON commented that he would like to hear from either the bill sponsor or the affected cooperatives. REPRESENTATIVE GREEN stated that he had no problem with this amendment as this is currently being done anyway. REPRESENTATIVE ELTON requested to hear from Mr. Hutchens that he didn't have a problem with the amendment. MR. HUTCHENS stated this was a new issue that hasn't been before the board, so they have no formal position on it, but he would be surprised if any members would object to it. REPRESENTATIVE GREEN clarified that this was filed with APUC, it is not currently filed with the Department of Commerce. CHAIRMAN KOTT asked for a roll call vote on Amendment 2. Representatives Elton, Sanders Rokeberg, Masek and Kott voted in favor of the amendment. Representative Kubina voted against the amendment. CHAIRMAN KOTT stated that the committee had before them the CS for HB 17 (STA). He said since the committee adopted Amendment 2, the fiscal note dated January 24, 1995, was no longer applicable. Number 607 REPRESENTATIVE KUBINA noticed in his packet that there was a Senate Bill as a companion, yet it had a fiscal note for the APUC done by the Department of Commerce, of $76,000. TAPE 95-13, SIDE A Number 000 MR. LOGAN stated that there were differences in the House and Senate versions. The reason we don't have a fiscal note is because they hadn't been given one. The information before the committee is the best available information at this time. Number 031 REPRESENTATIVE SANDERS shared Representative Rokeberg's concerns that no one had testified from the satellite television industry. He stated that he would feel better about the bill if it were to be held over until March 3, and try to get someone to address those questions. REPRESENTATIVE ELTON commented that the bill were held over, he would also like to hear from APUC regarding $76,000. Number 056 REPRESENTATIVE KUBINA interjected that a question he has is if the gas line were to be built, are we giving utilities up and down the line an advantage on being a distributor of that gas. CHAIRMAN KOTT pointed out that there are a lot of people tracking this legislation and none had voiced any opposition on this piece of legislation. Number 097 REPRESENTATIVE ELTON asked if the addition of $1,100 fiscal note meant that this need a committee referral to Finance. CHAIRMAN KOTT agreed, it would. He then asked the sponsor if any of these concerns and issues brought up here were addressed in the State Affairs Committee, that being the first committee of referral. REPRESENTATIVE GREEN replied that no, they didn't indicate any concern. There was some discussion on monopolism, but that was in areas where no one else was providing, or wanted to provide the service. If the committee wanted to draft a letter to the Finance Committee saying these issues should be discussed, he had no problem with that. CHAIRMAN KOTT recommended that they pass the bill out of committee with an attached letter of transmittal to the Finance Committee indicating the specific concerns the committee has. He said he would notify the Speaker that HB 17 had picked up a fiscal note and would need a Finance Committee referral. Chairman Kott entertained a motion. REPRESENTATIVE KUBINA made a motion to move the bill with individual recommendations. CHAIRMAN KOTT said the is a motion to move CS for HB 17(STA) out of committee with individual recommendations and accompanying fiscal notes with a letter of transmittal indicating the committee's concerns. CHAIRMAN KOTT asked if there were objections. Hearing none, the motion passed. HB 162 - ALCOHOL SALES IN HOTEL ROOMS Number 206 ROD MOURANT, ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT TO REPRESENTATIVE PETE KOTT, Prime Sponsor of HB 162, read the following sponsor statement: "Currently, the Alaska Alcoholic Beverage Control Board (ABC) does not allow alcoholic beverages to be stocked and served inside hotel or motel rooms. "House Bill 162 seeks to authorize the ABC to allow beverage dispensary license holders the right to serve liquor within hotel and motel rooms through what are commonly called mini bars. And mini bars are small refriderated units that contain, often times, different flavored waters, soft drinks, ice cube facilities and that type of dispensory. It's a hospitality service that's commonly offered in other states in the country, as well as many international hotels as well. "Hotel and management control this unique system either through a locking device or electronic or mechanical means and would issue the ability to open and use the facility only to a guest that is 21 years of age or older. "This service would allow international guests greater comfort during their travel through Alaska by providing they're commonly used to. It would also allow hospitality service (indisc.) and safety of a room while these individuals, in the comfort of their room not to worry about having to travel to a local bar in a city in which they're traveling through that they're not aware of -- familiar with. Also by having the facility in your hotel room, it should reduce the incident of a traveler driving to a bar or a night club nearby, having a drink or two or three and then driving their rental car back to their hotel where they're staying. "Adoption of this legislation would provide an enhancement to Alaska's tourism industry and bring it into conforming with a service that is frequently offered elsewhere." MR. MOURANT offered that there was a zero fiscal note from the ABC Board (ABC), as well as letters of support from the Hotel and Motel Association who also offered verbal testimony in the previous committee of referral supporting this service. Number 251 REPRESENTATIVE ELTON questioned that on page 1, lines 9 and 10, it states "a holder of a beverage or dispensary license issued to a hotel, motel resort or similar business, that caters to the traveling public," and what a "similar business" is. MR. MOUNT stated that lodge facilities would also be covered under this legislation. REPRESENTATIVE KUBINA made a motion to move the HB 162 out of the Hosue Labor and Commerce Committee. CHAIRMAN KOTT pointed out that it was currently legal to stock hotel rooms with various non-alcoholic drinks, but it's cost prohibitive. He said that the bill made it through the legislature two years ago, where it was vetoed by Governor Hickel. Chairman Kott asked if there was an objection in moving the bill. Hearing none, the motion passed. ADJOURNMENT Their being no further business come before the House Labor and Commerce Committee, Chairman Kott adjourned the meeting at 5:00 p.m.