Legislature(1995 - 1996)

03/01/1995 03:08 PM L&C

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
txt
           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.                                                                          
                                                                               

Document Name Date/Time Subjects