Legislature(2019 - 2020)BARNES 124

04/24/2019 03:15 PM LABOR & COMMERCE

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* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
+ HB 24 LIMITED TEACHER CERTIFICATES; LANGUAGES TELECONFERENCED
Heard & Held
+ HB 97 TELEHEALTH: PHYSICIAN ASSISTANTS; DRUGS TELECONFERENCED
Scheduled but Not Heard
+ HB 29 INSURANCE COVERAGE FOR TELEHEALTH TELECONFERENCED
Heard & Held
+= HB 78 INSURER & GROUP INSURANCE DISCLOSURE TELECONFERENCED
<Bill Hearing Canceled>
-- Public Testimony --
+ Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled TELECONFERENCED
+= SB 29 EXTEND BOARD OF MARINE PILOTS TELECONFERENCED
Moved SB 29 Out of Committee
-- Public Testimony --
+= SB 36 EXTEND BOARD OF NURSING TELECONFERENCED
Moved SB 36 Out of Committee
-- Public Testimony --
                    ALASKA STATE LEGISLATURE                                                                                  
          HOUSE LABOR AND COMMERCE STANDING COMMITTEE                                                                         
                         April 24, 2019                                                                                         
                           3:20 p.m.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
                             DRAFT                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Representative Gabrielle LeDoux, Co-Chair                                                                                       
Representative Adam Wool, Co-Chair                                                                                              
Representative Zack Fields                                                                                                      
Representative Sara Hannan                                                                                                      
Representative Louise Stutes                                                                                                    
Representative Dave Talerico                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Representative Josh Revak                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
SENATE BILL NO. 29                                                                                                              
"An Act extending the termination date of the Board of Marine                                                                   
Pilots; and providing for an effective date."                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
     - MOVED SB 29 OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
SENATE BILL NO. 36                                                                                                              
"An Act extending the termination date of the Board of Nursing;                                                                 
and providing for an effective date."                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
     - MOVED SB 36 OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 24                                                                                                               
"An Act relating to instruction in a language other than                                                                        
English; and relating to limited teacher certificates."                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
     - HEARD & HELD                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 29                                                                                                               
"An Act relating to insurance coverage for benefits provided                                                                    
through telehealth; and providing for an effective date."                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
     - HEARD & HELD                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
PREVIOUS COMMITTEE ACTION                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
BILL: SB  29                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE: EXTEND BOARD OF MARINE PILOTS                                                                                      
SPONSOR(s): SENATOR(s) STEDMAN                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
01/23/19       (S)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
01/23/19       (S)       L&C, FIN                                                                                               
02/07/19       (S)       L&C AT 1:30 PM BELTZ 105 (TSBldg)                                                                      
02/07/19       (S)       Moved SB 29 Out of Committee                                                                           
02/07/19       (S)       MINUTE(L&C)                                                                                            
02/08/19       (S)       L&C RPT 5DP                                                                                            
02/08/19       (S)       DP: REINBOLD, BIRCH, BISHOP, COSTELLO,                                                                 
                         GRAY-JACKSON                                                                                           
03/01/19       (S)       FIN AT 9:00 AM SENATE FINANCE 532                                                                      
03/01/19       (S)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
03/01/19       (S)       MINUTE(FIN)                                                                                            
03/08/19       (S)       FIN RPT  8DP 1NR                                                                                       
03/08/19       (S)       DP: STEDMAN, VON IMHOF, MICCICHE,                                                                      
                         HOFFMAN, WIELECHOWSKI, OLSON, WILSON,                                                                  
                         BISHOP                                                                                                 
03/08/19       (S)       NR: SHOWER                                                                                             
03/08/19       (S)       FIN AT 9:00 AM SENATE FINANCE 532                                                                      
03/08/19       (S)       Moved SB 29 Out of Committee                                                                           
03/08/19       (S)       MINUTE(FIN)                                                                                            
04/05/19       (S)       TRANSMITTED TO (H)                                                                                     
04/05/19       (S)       VERSION: SB  29                                                                                        
04/08/19       (H)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
04/08/19       (H)       L&C, FIN                                                                                               
04/17/19       (H)       L&C AT 3:15 PM BARNES 124                                                                              
04/17/19       (H)       -- MEETING CANCELED --                                                                                 
04/22/19       (H)       L&C AT 3:15 PM BARNES 124                                                                              
04/22/19       (H)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
04/22/19       (H)       MINUTE(L&C)                                                                                            
04/24/19       (H)       L&C AT 3:15 PM BARNES 124                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
BILL: SB  36                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE: EXTEND BOARD OF NURSING                                                                                            
SPONSOR(s): SENATOR(s) GIESSEL                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
01/25/19       (S)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
01/25/19       (S)       L&C, FIN                                                                                               
02/07/19       (S)       L&C AT 1:30 PM BELTZ 105 (TSBldg)                                                                      
02/07/19       (S)       Moved SB 36 Out of Committee                                                                           
02/07/19       (S)       MINUTE(L&C)                                                                                            
02/08/19       (S)       L&C RPT 5DP                                                                                            
02/08/19       (S)       DP: REINBOLD, COSTELLO, BISHOP, BIRCH,                                                                 
                         GRAY-JACKSON                                                                                           
03/01/19       (S)       FIN AT 9:00 AM SENATE FINANCE 532                                                                      
03/01/19       (S)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
03/01/19       (S)       MINUTE(FIN)                                                                                            
03/13/19       (S)       FIN RPT  6DP 2NR                                                                                       
03/13/19       (S)       DP: STEDMAN, VON IMHOF, MICCICHE,                                                                      
                         OLSON, WILSON, BISHOP                                                                                  
03/13/19       (S)       NR: SHOWER, WIELECHOWSKI                                                                               
03/13/19       (S)       FIN AT 9:00 AM SENATE FINANCE 532                                                                      
03/13/19       (S)       Moved SB 36 Out of Committee                                                                           
03/13/19       (S)       MINUTE(FIN)                                                                                            
04/01/19       (S)       TRANSMITTED TO (H)                                                                                     
04/01/19       (S)       VERSION: SB  36                                                                                        
04/03/19       (H)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
04/03/19       (H)       L&C, FIN                                                                                               
04/17/19       (H)       L&C AT 3:15 PM BARNES 124                                                                              
04/17/19       (H)       -- MEETING CANCELED --                                                                                 
04/22/19       (H)       L&C AT 3:15 PM BARNES 124                                                                              
04/22/19       (H)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
04/22/19       (H)       MINUTE(L&C)                                                                                            
04/24/19       (H)       L&C AT 3:15 PM BARNES 124                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
BILL: HB  24                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE: LIMITED TEACHER CERTIFICATES; LANGUAGES                                                                            
SPONSOR(s): REPRESENTATIVE(s) KREISS-TOMKINS                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
02/20/19       (H)       PREFILE RELEASED 1/7/19                                                                                
02/20/19       (H)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
02/20/19       (H)       EDC, L&C                                                                                               
03/29/19       (H)       EDC AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
03/29/19       (H)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
03/29/19       (H)       MINUTE(EDC)                                                                                            
04/01/19       (H)       EDC AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
04/01/19       (H)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
04/01/19       (H)       MINUTE(EDC)                                                                                            
04/03/19       (H)       EDC AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
04/03/19       (H)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
04/03/19       (H)       MINUTE(EDC)                                                                                            
04/05/19       (H)       EDC RPT 5DP 2NR                                                                                        
04/05/19       (H)       DP: TUCK, ZULKOSKY, JOHNSON, STORY,                                                                    
                         DRUMMOND                                                                                               
04/05/19       (H)       NR: REVAK, HOPKINS                                                                                     
04/05/19       (H)       EDC AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
04/05/19       (H)       Moved HB 24 Out of Committee                                                                           
04/05/19       (H)       MINUTE(EDC)                                                                                            
04/24/19       (H)       L&C AT 3:15 PM BARNES 124                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
BILL: HB  29                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE: INSURANCE COVERAGE FOR TELEHEALTH                                                                                  
SPONSOR(s): REPRESENTATIVE(s) SPOHNHOLZ                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
02/20/19       (H)       PREFILE RELEASED 1/11/19                                                                               
02/20/19       (H)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
02/20/19       (H)       HSS, L&C                                                                                               
03/26/19       (H)       HSS AT 3:00 PM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
03/26/19       (H)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
03/26/19       (H)       MINUTE(HSS)                                                                                            
03/28/19       (H)       HSS AT 3:00 PM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
03/28/19       (H)       Moved HB 29 Out of Committee                                                                           
03/28/19       (H)       MINUTE(HSS)                                                                                            
03/29/19       (H)       HSS RPT 3DP 1NR                                                                                        
03/29/19       (H)       DP: CLAMAN, DRUMMOND, SPOHNHOLZ                                                                        
03/29/19       (H)       NR: PRUITT                                                                                             
04/12/19       (H)       L&C AT 3:15 PM BARNES 124                                                                              
04/12/19       (H)       -- MEETING CANCELED --                                                                                 
04/15/19       (H)       L&C AT 3:15 PM BARNES 124                                                                              
04/15/19       (H)       Scheduled but Not Heard                                                                                
04/24/19       (H)       L&C AT 3:15 PM BARNES 124                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
WITNESS REGISTER                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
KAREN MORTON                                                                                                                    
Alaska Nurses Association                                                                                                       
Soldotna, Alaska                                                                                                                
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in support of SB 36.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE JONATHAN KRIESS-TOMKINS                                                                                          
Alaska State Legislature                                                                                                        
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Introduced HB 24, as prime sponsor, and                                                                  
answered questions from the committee.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
JON SCANLAN, Staff                                                                                                              
Representative Jonathan Kreiss-Tomkins                                                                                          
Alaska State Legislature                                                                                                        
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Presented HB 24 and answered questions from                                                              
the committee, on behalf of Representative Kreiss-Tompkins,                                                                     
prime sponsor.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
SONDRA MERIDITH, Teacher Certification Administration                                                                           
Student Learning Division                                                                                                       
Department of Education and Early Development                                                                                   
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Answered questions  during the hearing on HB                                                             
24.                                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE IVY SPOHNHOLZ                                                                                                    
Alaska State Legislature                                                                                                        
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION  STATEMENT:   As  prime sponsor,  introduced  HB 29  and                                                             
answered questions from the committee.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
BERNICE NISBETT, Staff                                                                                                          
Representative Ivy Spohnholz                                                                                                    
Alaska State Legislature                                                                                                        
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:   Presented the sectional analysis  of HB 29,                                                             
on behalf of Representative Spohnholz, prime sponsor.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
LORI WING-HEIER, Director                                                                                                       
Division of Insurance                                                                                                           
Department of Commerce, Community & Economic Development                                                                        
Anchorage, Alaska                                                                                                               
POSITION STATEMENT:  Answered questions  during the hearing on HB                                                             
29.                                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
WADE ERICKSON, MD                                                                                                               
Capstone Family Medicine                                                                                                        
Wasilla, Alaska                                                                                                                 
POSITION STATEMENT:  Answered questions  during the hearing on HB                                                             
29.                                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
ACTION NARRATIVE                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
3:20:13 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR ADAM WOOL  called the House Labor  and Commerce Standing                                                             
Committee meeting to order at  3:20 p.m.  Representatives Stutes,                                                               
Talerico, Fields,  Hannan, LeDoux, and  Wool were present  at the                                                               
call to order.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
              SB  29-EXTEND BOARD OF MARINE PILOTS                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
3:21:40 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR WOOL  announced that the  first order of  business would                                                               
be SENATE BILL NO. 29, "An  Act extending the termination date of                                                               
the  Board  of Marine  Pilots;  and  providing for  an  effective                                                               
date."                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
3:21:58 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  WOOL  opened   public  testimony  on  SB   29.    After                                                               
Ascertaining  that no  one wished  to testify,  he closed  public                                                               
testimony.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
3:22:31 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  LEDOUX moved  to report  SB  29 out  of committee  with                                                               
individual  recommendations and  the  accompanying fiscal  notes.                                                               
There being  no objection, SB  29 was  reported out of  the House                                                               
Labor and Commerce Standing Committee.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
                 SB  36-EXTEND BOARD OF NURSING                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
3:22:49 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR WOOL announced that the  next order of business would be                                                               
SENATE BILL  NO. 36,  "An Act extending  the termination  date of                                                               
the Board of Nursing; and providing for an effective date."                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR WOOL opened public testimony.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
3:23:18 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
KAREN  MORTON,  Alaska  Nurses Association,  voiced  support  for                                                               
extending the Board of Nursing and the passage of SB 36.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
3:24:00 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR WOOL closed public testimony.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
3:24:07 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  LEDOUX moved  to report  SB  36 out  of committee  with                                                               
individual  recommendations and  the  accompanying fiscal  notes.                                                               
There being  no objection, SB  36 was  reported out of  the House                                                               
Labor and Commerce Standing Committee.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
3:24:31 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
The committee took an at-ease from 3:24 to 3:26 p.m.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
         HB  24-LIMITED TEACHER CERTIFICATES; LANGUAGES                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
3:26:07 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR WOOL announced that the  next order of business would be                                                               
HOUSE BILL NO. 24, "An Act  relating to instruction in a language                                                               
other   than   English;   and   relating   to   limited   teacher                                                               
certificates."                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
3:26:20 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE    JONATHAN     KRIESS-TOMKINS,    Alaska    State                                                               
Legislature, as prime  sponsor of HB 24, introduced  the bill and                                                               
related its history.   He said this is the  second legislature in                                                               
which this  legislation has been  introduced.   Last legislature,                                                               
the House passed  the legislation and then it "died"  in its last                                                               
committee  of  referral in  the  Senate.    He stated  that  this                                                               
legislation has  been broadly requested by  school districts that                                                               
have immersion language  programs.  Under HB 24,  the state Board                                                               
of Education and Early Development  would expand the scope of the                                                               
existing  "Type  M"  limited certificates  to  include  immersion                                                               
language education.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
3:27:43 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
JON  SCANLAN,  Staff,   Representative  Jonathan  Kreiss-Tomkins,                                                               
Alaska  State Legislature,  on behalf  of representative  Kreiss-                                                               
Tompkins,  prime  sponsor,  paraphrased   parts  of  the  sponsor                                                               
statement [included in  the committee packet], which  read in its                                                               
entirety as follows [original punctuation provided]:                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     Language   immersion  education   is  an   increasingly                                                                    
     popular   educational   model    that   also   produces                                                                    
     impressive academic outcomes.  In an immersion program,                                                                    
     some of the  academic subject matter is  delivered in a                                                                    
     language other than English.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     HB 24  provides needed flexibility to  school districts                                                                    
     operating language immersion programs.  HB 24 gives the                                                                    
     state board of education  the tools necessary to tackle                                                                    
     one   of  the   biggest   challenges  facing   Alaska's                                                                    
     immersion  programs: finding  fully certified  teachers                                                                    
     also fluent  in an  Alaska Native or  foreign language.                                                                    
     Under  HB  24, the  state  board  could provide  school                                                                    
     districts  case-by-case  flexibility to  hire  language                                                                    
     immersion teachers  they know  are qualified to  lead a                                                                    
     classroom  but  who     for  reasons  such  as  limited                                                                    
     English   proficiency,   advanced  age,   or   familial                                                                    
     responsibilities    are  unable at  the time  to get  a                                                                    
     full teacher  certification. To do so,  the state board                                                                    
     would have to create a  new certificate along the lines                                                                    
     of  the   existing  "Type  M"   or  "Type   I"  limited                                                                    
     certificates.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
     Alaska already has a variety  of successful and popular                                                                    
     immersion  programs,   including  Wasilla's  Fronteras,                                                                    
     Anchorage's   Rilke   Schule,  and   Anchorage   School                                                                    
     District's highly regarded world languages program.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
     Immersion  is also  central to  Alaska Native  language                                                                    
     revitalization  efforts. In  Israel,  New Zealand,  and                                                                    
     Hawaii,  immersion   education  was  at  the   core  of                                                                    
     indigenous language revival.  At Ayaprun Elitnaurvik in                                                                    
     Bethel, instruction is done in  Yup'ik, and interest in                                                                    
     Alaska Native  language immersion education  is growing                                                                    
     elsewhere in the state.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
     HB 24  will help  Alaska's language  immersion programs                                                                    
     continue   to    provide   high-quality   dual-language                                                                    
     education.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MR.  SCANLAN added  that  limited certificates  are  issued on  a                                                               
"case-by-case"  basis, only  by request  of the  school district,                                                               
for teachers  with a  specific subject  area expertise  for which                                                               
there are  few fully certified  teachers.  HB 24  would authorize                                                               
the  Board  of  Education  to   create  a  new  type  of  limited                                                               
certificate  specifically   geared  towards   language  immersion                                                               
programs.  Furthermore, the bill  would permit the board to write                                                               
regulations  to  ensure   "the  certificate  holder  demonstrates                                                               
instructional skills  in subject  matter expertise  sufficient to                                                               
assure the  public that  the person is  competent as  a teacher."                                                               
Additionally,  the  certificate  would  only  be  valid  for  the                                                               
language of instruction  to be taught in  specific subject areas,                                                               
and only to  the school district that requested it.   Lastly, the                                                               
certificate is  initially issued for  one year as  a probationary                                                               
period.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
3:33:05 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE FIELDS  questioned whether  HB 24 would  allow the                                                               
"TEACH  program"  and  the "Type  I"  certification  to  continue                                                               
unimpeded for the certified associate  teachers who are not in an                                                               
immersion school.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
3:33:37 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. SCANLAN  confirmed that.   He noted  that the bill  would not                                                               
affect the "Type  I" certificate aside from  changing the initial                                                               
certification period to one year.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
3:34:02 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  FIELDS expressed  hope  for future  conversations                                                               
with  the Department  of Education  and  Early Development  (EED)                                                               
about making  technical assistance available to  school districts                                                               
so that  the Lower Kuskokwim  School District (LKSD)  model could                                                               
be  implemented elsewhere  if desired.   He  noted that  the LKSD                                                               
model  has been  successful  at attaining  local teachers,  which                                                               
improves tenure,  reduces turnover, and thereby  improves quality                                                               
of  instruction  by  having culturally  fluent  teachers  in  the                                                               
classroom.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
3:34:39 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  LEDOUX  asked   why  there  needs  to   be  a  separate                                                               
"credential" for language immersion education.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
3:35:10 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. SCANLAN acknowledged that under  current statute, an educator                                                               
could  receive an  Alaska Native  language  certificate to  teach                                                               
Yup'ik;  however,  HB 24  would  allow  them to  teach  different                                                               
subjects in  Yup'ik.   Currently, it is  difficult to  find fully                                                               
certified teachers also  fluent in an Alaska  Native language for                                                               
reasons  such as  limited English  proficiency, advanced  age, or                                                               
familial responsibilities.  This  bill would address this problem                                                               
by providing  a certificate  that allows  these educators  to get                                                               
into classrooms and teach in  programs and subject areas beyond a                                                               
strictly culture or language course.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
3:36:32 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  LEDOUX   surmised  that  there  are   enough  certified                                                               
teachers who  are fluent  in the  "European languages"  or "major                                                               
Asian  languages" and  fewer that  are fluent  in languages  like                                                               
Farsi or Afghan.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
3:37:15 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. SCANLAN  said that  is what  language immersion  operators in                                                               
Alaska have  confirmed.  He  offered his understanding  that it's                                                               
also challenging to find fully  certificated Spanish teachers who                                                               
have the requisite  level of fluency to be  effective in language                                                               
immersion programs.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
3:38:35 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR LEDOUX expressed  her enthusiasm for the  bill and asked                                                               
if there is any pushback.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
3:38:44 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KREISS-TOMKINS clarified that  this bill sets up a                                                               
process  -  it  doesn't  guarantee  that  people  get  [teaching]                                                               
certificates.    He  acknowledged   that  there  have  been  some                                                               
concerns.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
3:40:36 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR LEDOUX opined that having  Native language speakers is a                                                               
wonderful idea.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
3:41:17 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. SCANLAN directed attention to  section D of the current bill.                                                               
He said one change would be  that the Board of Education wouldn't                                                               
be   able  to   require   English  competency   exams  in   their                                                               
regulations, as that has been  relayed as a major limiting factor                                                               
in  the ability  for  fluent  speakers to  teach  and help  these                                                               
programs thrive.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
3:43:46 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE FIELDS  noted that Anchorage's  immersion programs                                                               
have helped set its school district  apart in a positive way.  He                                                               
opined that  these programs would  help attract and  retain high-                                                               
earning,  professional families,  and ultimately  play a  role in                                                               
the economic competitiveness of Alaska's respective communities.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
3:44:39 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  STUTES  sought  clarification on  how  the  [new]                                                               
certificates would be issued.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
3:44:59 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KREISS-TOMKINS  explained that  the  certificates                                                               
are issued by  the EED.  Under the process  established by HB 24,                                                               
local districts  would identify qualified educators  who wouldn't                                                               
otherwise qualify  for a traditional  certificate and  they would                                                               
apply for their  limited teachers' certificate.   The board would                                                               
then vote  to forward the applications  on to the state  Board of                                                               
Education who would  then review them based on a  set of criteria                                                               
and approve or deny them.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
3:46:05 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE STUTES asked if the  approved certificate would be                                                               
limited to one language as well as to a specific school.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
3:46:28 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. SCANLAN  acknowledged that the  certificate would  be limited                                                               
to the language that it was  applied for, as well as the specific                                                               
subjects that  the candidate demonstrated subject  area expertise                                                               
in.  He added that it would also be limited to a district.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
3:46:45 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE STUTES asked  if it applies for  any school within                                                               
the district.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
MR. SCANLAN affirmed that.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
3:47:17 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HANNAN  pointed out that the  state already grants                                                               
"Type  M"  certificates to  speak  and  teach indigenous  Alaskan                                                               
languages and  certain vocational skills, like  military science.                                                               
She  expressed  concern  that  HB   24  conjoins  world  language                                                               
skillsets  into  that  same  "Type  M"  certification,  which  is                                                               
designed  around subjects  you  couldn't  traditionally learn  in                                                               
academic training.  She noted that  there are 11 types of teacher                                                               
certificates in Alaska.  One  of which, the subject-matter expert                                                               
[limited]  teacher   certificate,  allows  individuals   who  are                                                               
knowledgeable in a specific subject  area to temporarily teach in                                                               
a classroom while completing  their teacher certificate education                                                               
requirements.  She shared her  belief that the current bill would                                                               
place teachers in schools "with no  caveat of how long before you                                                               
need to  reach competency that other  people had to meet  to come                                                               
through the door."   Indigenous language teachers  in Alaska, she                                                               
said, have  already been  successfully credentialled  in teaching                                                               
across the state for over 20 years.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
3:52:39 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. SCANLAN  noted that the aforementioned  subject-matter expert                                                               
certificate [AS  14.20.022] statutorily requires  a baccalaureate                                                               
degree, which would  be a limiting factor for many  of the fluent                                                               
Alaska Native language speakers.   He continued by saying that HB                                                               
24  would   operate  under  AS  14.20.25,   the  limited  teacher                                                               
certificates,  which  does  not   require  a  bachelor's  degree.                                                               
Nonetheless,  the  "Type  I"  limited  certificate  does  require                                                               
enrollment in  a bachelor's degree  program, a  mentored teacher,                                                               
and a number of other competency checks.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
3:56:55 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KREISS-TOMKINS  added that under current  law, the                                                               
"Type M" limited certificate doesn't  allow for adequate language                                                               
immersion education because the  Alaska Native language provision                                                               
only refers  to instruction of  the language itself,  rather than                                                               
teaching  different  subjects  in  that specific  language.    He                                                               
opined  that the  "Type M"  Alaska Native  language provision  is                                                               
narrow and restrictive in a  manner that preempts the possibility                                                               
of an immersion language program.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
3:58:40 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE FIELDS addressed the  "Type I" certificate and the                                                               
LKSD, which to  his understanding is the only  district with that                                                               
kind  of   certification.    He   stated  that  their   "Type  I"                                                               
certification exists within the  TEACH program, which is designed                                                               
to get local  teachers in the classroom.  He  explained that most                                                               
"Type I" associate teachers are  working towards completing their                                                               
4-year degree  while working in  the school district  and gaining                                                               
experience.   He  said it's  a  marriage of  both the  university                                                               
degree  program  and  a registered  apprenticeship  program  that                                                               
regulates under the  U.S. Department of Labor.   He expressed his                                                               
support of retaining  the flexibility to have  teachers who don't                                                               
have their bachelor's degree who  are nonetheless working towards                                                               
becoming fully certified  teachers, adding that it's  a great way                                                               
to have  local teachers who  are culturally fluent  and committed                                                               
to their communities.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
4:01:13 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  WOOL requested  a  chart of  the  11 different  teacher                                                               
certificates with their respective requirements.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
4:01:59 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR LEDOUX  asked if  under the  current bill,  the teachers                                                               
would be eligible for tenure.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
4:02:09 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR.  SCANLAN  noted  that  the  certificate  would  be  initially                                                               
eligible  for  one year  with  specific  requirements of  renewal                                                               
written by the department.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
4:02:36 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KREISS-TOMKINS added  that the application process                                                               
would be a  "rigmarole."  He stated that the  intent is to create                                                               
a  stepping-stone  for   teachers  on  their  way   to  full  and                                                               
traditional certification.   He further noted  that tenure, under                                                               
Alaska law,  is attained after  four years, adding that  it would                                                               
be difficult to get tenured under a "Type M" certificate.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
4:05:06 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE STUTES  questioned the broad scope  of the current                                                               
bill, expressing  concern that  it covers  "any language  that is                                                               
not English."                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
4:06:41 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KREISS-TOMKINS  noted  that  when  talking  about                                                               
subjects taught  in language immersion programs,  they are almost                                                               
exclusively  subjects taught  at  the earliest  age  levels.   He                                                               
further  stated that  the  only  way to  create  a generation  of                                                               
fluent  speakers  in  a  world   language  is  through  immersion                                                               
language education.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
4:09:13 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE TALERICO  expressed his  support for the  bill and                                                               
thanked the sponsor  for the effort he put  into this legislation                                                               
and for bringing it forward.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
4:10:34 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HANNAN stated that she  is not opposed to the goal                                                               
of  the  bill; however,  across  the  state there  are  currently                                                               
people with Type  M certificates in the classroom  who don't have                                                               
traditional academic degrees available to  them.  She opined that                                                               
"Type M"  certificates already allow  teachers to  teach language                                                               
immersion   in  an   indigenous  language.     She   offered  her                                                               
understanding  that  the existing  obstacle  is  with the  Native                                                               
language speakers  at immersion  schools being  able to  pass the                                                               
competency exam.  She expressed  concern about the true intent of                                                               
the  bill and  whether  it concerned  world  languages or  Native                                                               
languages.  She opined that  there should be caveats that address                                                               
the downstream effects of the current bill.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
4:13:42 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KREISS-TOMKINS  clarified that  HB 24 is  for both                                                               
world  languages  and  Native languages.    Regarding  downstream                                                               
effects, he said, it's important  to emphasize that the bill sets                                                               
up a  process and  not a  guarantee of  certification.   He added                                                               
that  the   state  board  and  the   department  will  promulgate                                                               
regulations  that  include  protections   and  vetting  to  avoid                                                               
aforementioned concerns.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
4:14:46 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR WOOL  questioned whether  this bill  would create  a new                                                               
type of certification or fall under the "Type I" certificate.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
MR. SCANLAN  clarified that  if the  bill passes,  the department                                                               
would create a new type of certificate.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  WOOL  asked  if  the  renewal  process  would  be  less                                                               
rigorous than the initial application.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
MR. SCANLAN explained that under  HB 24, the certificate would be                                                               
valid for one year and the  department would have to certify that                                                               
the candidate  has demonstrated  skills in  classroom instruction                                                               
and student assessment.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR WOOL asked how many immersion schools exist in Alaska.                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MR.  SCANLAN  answered  8  immersion  schools  in  Anchorage  and                                                               
various  others  across  the  state  -  some  that  are  tribally                                                               
operated,  and  others  operated  by charter  schools  or  public                                                               
schools.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KREISS-TOMKINS,  in  response to  Co-Chair  Wool,                                                               
replied that there are at least 10 immersion schools in Alaska.                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR WOOL asked how many of those 10 teach Native languages.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KREISS-TOMKINS answered four.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
4:18:10 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  WOOL questioned  weather  this  certificate would  also                                                               
allow  individuals  to  teach  certain  subjects  in  English  in                                                               
addition the foreign language.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
4:18:48 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. SCANLAN stated  that the certificate would only  be valid for                                                               
the  non-English  language it  was  issued  in.   He  noted  that                                                               
immersion schools  aim to teach  50-100 percent of  their program                                                               
in that non-English language.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  WOOL sought  clarification on  whether the  certificate                                                               
would be subject-specific.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
4:20:23 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR.  SCANLAN  reiterated that  the  certificate  would specify  a                                                               
specific subject area and language.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
4:20:45 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  LEDOUX  asked  for clarification  on  what  grades  the                                                               
certificate would  cover.  She  noted that in the  higher grades,                                                               
like  high school,  the issue  of the  candidate's competency  in                                                               
certain subjects would be relevant.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
4:21:30 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE   KREISS-TOMKINS  answered,   "Almost  exclusively                                                               
lower grades."   He noted that most  immersion programs discharge                                                               
their  students  into  "normal" middle  school  and  high  school                                                               
tracks by 5th or 6th grade.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
4:22:39 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. SCANLAN,  in response  to Co-Chair  LeDoux, added  that under                                                               
this bill, the  department would be permitted  to create separate                                                               
certificates  to  target  both  the upper  and  lower  grades  if                                                               
necessary.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
4:23:07 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE FIELDS asked future  invited testifiers to address                                                               
how multi-lingual learning helps  kids reach their full cognitive                                                               
capacity in  the same way  that different languages  teach people                                                               
to see the  world in different ways by structure  of the language                                                               
itself.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
4:23:41 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  WOOL  asked how  to  resolve  the shortage  of  foreign                                                               
language teachers in traditional school districts.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
4:24:44 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. SCANLAN said he was unsure of the answer.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
4:25:03 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  WOOL  reflected  on  his  own  experience  helping  his                                                               
daughter with  advanced math in  elementary school.   He observed                                                               
that  word problems  are more  prevalent now,  indicating that  a                                                               
math teacher  would need  to be skilled  in both  linguistics and                                                               
mathematics.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
4:26:50 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR WOOL questioned  whether English is also  taught in non-                                                               
English immersion programs.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
4:28:20 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
SONDRA  MERIDITH, Teacher  Certification Administration,  Student                                                               
Learning   Division,   Department    of   Education   and   Early                                                               
Development,  replied   that  she  was  familiar   with  a  50/50                                                               
proposition,  where half  the day  is taught  in English  and the                                                               
other half in the non-English language.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
4:30:07 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  HANNAN  asked  how  many  "Type  M"  certificated                                                               
language teachers currently work in Alaska.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MS. MERIDITH answered less than 50.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
4:30:31 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE   HANNAN  questioned   whether  that   number  has                                                               
decreased over the  last 10 years as more  academic programs that                                                               
lead to traditional certification have become available.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
MS. MERIDITH said she would follow up with that answer.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
4:30:54 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  HANNAN asked  if  there are  any restrictions  on                                                               
what  [subject  areas]  "Type  M"  language  teachers  in  a  k-1                                                               
classroom can instruct.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
MS.  MERIDITH  stated  that  the  statute  limits  that  type  of                                                               
certification to teach language  and cultural aspects; therefore,                                                               
there would  need to  be a [fully]  certified teacher  to oversee                                                               
math lessons, for example.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
4:31:39 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HANNAN  asked if  "Type I"  and "Type  M" teachers                                                               
could work together to complete a curriculum load.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
MS.  MERIDITH replied  that the  "Type I"  teacher could  provide                                                               
some instruction, but  they would also be  working in conjunction                                                               
with a  [fully] certified teacher  and would not be  provided the                                                               
autonomy to teach without his or her oversight and supervision.                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
4:32:34 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  HANNAN  asked  how  many  fully  certified  world                                                               
language teachers are licensed in  Alaska and under which type of                                                               
certification.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
MS.  MERIDITH stated  that there  are  approximately 12  teachers                                                               
certified under the "Type W"  limited certificate for individuals                                                               
with language expertise.   Across the state, she  said, there are                                                               
at least 100 people that are certified in a foreign language.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  WOOL sought  clarification  on how  "Type M"  certified                                                               
teachers become tenured.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
4:35:09 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS. MERIDITH explained  that it varies from  district to district                                                               
and how they choose to renew the certification.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  WOOL  restated  his  question, asking  if  a  "Type  M"                                                               
teacher automatically  gets tenured  after teaching for  three or                                                               
four  years,  and  whether  they must  continue  to  renew  their                                                               
certification.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
MS. MERIDITH  said she did  not know how districts  are extending                                                               
tenure to "Type M" certificates.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
4:37:28 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR WOOL announced that HB 24 was held over.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
4:37:45 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
The committee took an at-ease from 3:37 to 3:42 p.m.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
[Co-Chair Wool passed the gavel to Co-Chair LeDoux.]                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
            HB  29-INSURANCE COVERAGE FOR TELEHEALTH                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
4:42:12 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR LEDOUX announced that the  final order of business would                                                               
be HOUSE BILL NO. 29, "An  Act relating to insurance coverage for                                                               
benefits  provided  through  telehealth;  and  providing  for  an                                                               
effective date."                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
4:43:47 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE   IVY   SPOHNHOLZ,   Alaska   State   Legislature,                                                               
introduced HB 29, as prime  sponsor, and paraphrased parts of the                                                               
sponsor statement [included in the  committee packet], which read                                                               
in its entirety as follows [original punctuation provided]:                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     HB  29  will  enhance access  to  healthcare  services,                                                                    
     primarily mental health and  primary care, for Alaskans                                                                    
     who  have insurance  plans regulated  by  the state  of                                                                    
     Alaska.  HB  29 does  this  by  allowing providers  who                                                                    
     contract  with  insurers  regulated  by  the  state  of                                                                    
     Alaska  to  reimburse  for services  delivered  through                                                                    
     telehealth.  Healthcare  services are  currently  being                                                                    
     delivered through telehealth all  over the country, and                                                                    
     Alaska  is at  the  forefront  of providing  telehealth                                                                    
     services for  urban, rural, aging, and  the underserved                                                                    
     communities   across  the   state,  primarily   through                                                                    
     Medicaid and tribal health care.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
     Some of the advantages of telehealth include:                                                                              
          ? Better access and  privacy in rural, remote, and                                                                    
          urban areas of Alaska.                                                                                                
          ? Early intervention which can lead to savings.                                                                       
          ? Greater  access for  referrals to  providers who                                                                    
          specialize in treating specific health issues.                                                                        
          ? Better, and potentially  quicker, access means a                                                                    
          potential   reduction    in   suicides,   domestic                                                                    
          violence and other serious events.                                                                                    
          ? Zero impact on state budget.                                                                                        
          ? Reduces the need for expensive medical travel.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     Under   HB   29,   telehealth  benefits   for   covered                                                                    
     healthcare services, including  mental health benefits,                                                                    
     will   be  reimbursable   for  health   care  providers                                                                    
     licensed  in the  state  without  an initial  in-person                                                                    
     appointment.  Depending  on   the  patient's  needs,  a                                                                    
     telehealth    appointment   can    provide   education,                                                                    
     reviewing of  prescriptions and checking  symptoms, all                                                                    
     at a distance on a secure system.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
     Expanding  access   to  healthcare   delivered  through                                                                    
     telehealth  will  help  to  address  some  of  Alaska's                                                                    
     unique  challenges due  to our  large geography,  rural                                                                    
     and   aging   communities,  and   statewide   addiction                                                                    
     epidemic. Telehealth can help  Alaska improve access to                                                                    
     healthcare,  improve   clinical  outcomes   and  reduce                                                                    
     health care costs.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
4:45:29 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR LEDOUX sought clarification on what it means for a                                                                     
patient to be "monitored."                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE   SPOHNHOLZ  related   a   personal  anecdote   to                                                               
illustrate "self-monitoring" via telehealth.   She explained that                                                               
it's a  method of  transmitting information  to a  doctor without                                                               
having  to be  there in  person, adding  that it's  a way  to use                                                               
technology  to improve  access to  care  and reduce  some of  the                                                               
burden of time and travel that comes with monitoring healthcare.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
4:46:43 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  LEDOUX asked  if insurance  would cover  a consultation                                                               
via telehealth.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  SPOHNHOLZ answered  yes,  consultations could  be                                                               
covered under  insurance if this  bill were  to pass.   She noted                                                               
that  some  insurers in  Alaska  already  cover telehealth,  like                                                               
Medicaid and tribal health, but not all private insurers do.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
4:50:02 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  SPOHNHOLZ returned  to  her  introduction of  the                                                               
bill.  She stated that HB  29 would increase access to healthcare                                                               
in Alaska,  especially for rural  communities, without  having to                                                               
travel  for it.   Referencing  SB 74,  she said  one of  the main                                                               
reasons  that telehealth  coverage was  included was  to increase                                                               
access  to substance  abuse and  behavioral health  treatment for                                                               
individuals in  rural Alaska.   She said not every  community can                                                               
have  their own  behavioral  healthcare  provider; however,  they                                                               
could get  access to  telehealth care to  speak with  a substance                                                               
abuse counselor,  for example.   She noted that  Health Insurance                                                               
Portability  and Accountability  Act  (HIPAA)  compliance is  the                                                               
reason special  technology is  used in  telehealth communication.                                                               
She  offered  her  belief  that HB  29  will  reduce  unnecessary                                                               
medical  travel, as  well as  unnecessary emergency  room visits.                                                               
She  opined that  even in  urban  communities where  access to  a                                                               
doctor is readily  available, telehealth is a  better option than                                                               
going in person.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
4:53:29 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
BERNICE  NISBETT,  Staff,  Representative Ivy  Spohnholz,  Alaska                                                               
State Legislature,  on behalf of Representative  Spohnholz, prime                                                               
sponsor  of  HB  29,  presented  the  sectional  analysis.    She                                                               
informed  the committee  that section  1 amends  AS 21.42.422  to                                                               
require insurance  coverage for health benefits  provided through                                                               
telehealth technology.   Section  2 provides the  definitions for                                                               
health care insurer and telehealth.   Finally, sections 3 through                                                               
4,  she said,  speak to  the  insurance plans  and the  effective                                                               
date, which is July 1, 2020.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
4:55:08 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  FIELDS   asked  if   the  state  of   Alaska  has                                                               
quantified  the amount  of money  spent on  weekend ER  or urgent                                                               
care  visits  and  how  much   money  could  be  saved  by  using                                                               
telehealth instead.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
4:56:36 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  SPOHNHOLZ replied  that  the state  has not  been                                                               
able  to  quantify  cost-savings,   adding  that  there  is  cost                                                               
avoidance, but there's  no analysis that tracks  the reduction in                                                               
ER visits with the introduction  of new telehealth services.  She                                                               
clarified  that HB  29 is  not covered  by the  Alaska Care  plan                                                               
because it's federally regulated.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
4:57:58 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE FIELDS  asked what  the potential savings  are for                                                               
plans covered by this bill.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
4:58:31 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
LORI WING-HEIER,  Director, Division of Insurance,  Department of                                                               
Commerce, Community  & Economic Development, replied  she did not                                                               
have that answer right now.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
4:58:49 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE STUTES  asked if any "strictly  telehealth medical                                                               
facilities" currently exist.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  SPOHNHOLZ  confirmed   that  they  do,  including                                                               
Capstone Express and Teladoc.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
5:00:21 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  STUTES questioned  whether  these facilities  use                                                               
FaceTime.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  SPOHNHOLZ replied  that they  don't use  FaceTime                                                               
because  it's not  HIPAA compliant;  however,  there are  several                                                               
similar   video  conferencing   technologies  that   are  readily                                                               
available to them.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
5:01:09 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE   HANNAN  asked   how  many   insurance  companies                                                               
currently use telehealth in Alaska.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
5:01:54 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS.   WING-HEIER  offered   her  understanding   that  currently,                                                               
insurance  companies are  split on  offering this  as a  benefit,                                                               
adding that the reimbursement is what's in question.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
5:03:01 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS.  WING-HEIER,   responding  to   a  follow-up   question  from                                                               
Representative Hannan,  said she sees telehealth  as an excellent                                                               
way  to allow  innovation and  reduce the  cost of  healthcare in                                                               
Alaska, while increasing access to it.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR LEDOUX  sought clarification on how  someone would reach                                                               
their doctor after hours via telehealth communication.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
5:05:30 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SPOHNHOLZ explained that  it depends on the clinic                                                               
and the  individual provider, noting  that Teladoc,  for example,                                                               
is available 24/7.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
5:06:08 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR LEDOUX asked why FaceTime isn't HIPAA compliant.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
5:07:08 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
WADE ERICKSON,  MD, Capstone Family Medicine,  replied that HIPAA                                                               
compliance  requires certain  encryption standards  that FaceTime                                                               
doesn't have.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR LEDOUX asked if a  regular telephone or cellphone can be                                                               
used.                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
DR. ERICKSON  answered yes.   He said it's  the app on  the phone                                                               
that makes the difference.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
5:08:12 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR LEDOUX announced that HB 29 was held over.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
5:08:31 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR LEDOUX ADJOURNMENT                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
There being no further business before the committee, the House                                                                 
Labor and Commerce Standing Committee meeting was adjourned at                                                                  
[5:08] p.m.                                                                                                                     

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
SB 29 Sponsor Statement.pdf HL&C 4/22/2019 3:15:00 PM
HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
SB 29
SB 29 Version A.pdf HL&C 4/22/2019 3:15:00 PM
HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
SB 29
SB 29 Fiscal Note.pdf HL&C 4/22/2019 3:15:00 PM
HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
SB 29
SB 29 Board of Marine Pilots Audit.pdf HL&C 4/22/2019 3:15:00 PM
HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
SB 29
SB 29 - Letter of Support SEAPA.pdf HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
SL&C 2/7/2019 1:30:00 PM
SB 29
SB36 Sponsor Statement 1-28-19.pdf HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
SFIN 3/1/2019 9:00:00 AM
SL&C 2/7/2019 1:30:00 PM
SB 36
SB36 Ver. A.PDF HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
SL&C 2/7/2019 1:30:00 PM
SB 36
SB36 Fiscal Note - SB036-DCCED-CBPL-02-01-19.pdf HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
SL&C 2/7/2019 1:30:00 PM
SB 36
SB36 Supporting Document Division of Legislative Audit Sunset Review April 2017.pdf HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
SFIN 3/1/2019 9:00:00 AM
SL&C 2/7/2019 1:30:00 PM
SB 36
SB36 Letter of Support BON 2-14-19.pdf HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
SFIN 3/1/2019 9:00:00 AM
SB 36
SB36 Letter of Support Farnstrom 2-26-19.pdf HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
SFIN 3/1/2019 9:00:00 AM
SB 36
SB36 Letter of Support AK Nurses Assn 2-27-19.pdf HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
SFIN 3/1/2019 9:00:00 AM
SB 36
SB 36 senate finance questions.pdf HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
SFIN 3/1/2019 9:00:00 AM
SB 36
SB 36 Letter of Support APRN 3-4-19.pdf HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
SFIN 3/13/2019 9:00:00 AM
SB 36
SB36 Supporting Document BON Roster 3-29-19.pdf HL&C 4/22/2019 3:15:00 PM
HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
SB 36
SB36 Bundled Letters of Support.pdf HL&C 4/22/2019 3:15:00 PM
HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
SB 36
HB 24.Sponsor.pdf HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
HB 24
HB 24.Bill version A.pdf HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
HB 24
HB 24.Sectional.pdf HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
HB 24
HB 24.Fiscal Note DEED.pdf HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
HB 24
HB 24.Backup Immersion Student Acheivement.pdf HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
HB 24
HB 24.Backup Support Letter Leslie Harper.pdf HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
HB 24
HB 24.Backup Additional Support Letter Margi Dashevsky.pdf HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
HB 24
HB 24.Backup Updated Support Letters 4.24.19.pdf HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
HB 24
HB 97.Sponsor.pdf HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
HB 97
HB 97.Bill Version U.PDF HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
HB 97
HB 97.Fiscal DCCED.pdf HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
HB 97
HB 97.Sectional.pdf HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
HB 97
HB 97.Summary of Changes Version A to Version U.pdf HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
HB 97
HB 97.Bill Version S CS for Adoption.pdf HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
HB 97
HB 97. Summary of Changes Version U to Verison S.pdf HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
HB 97
HB 97.Backup Support Letter ASHNHA.pdf HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
HB 97
HB 29.Sponsor.pdf HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
HB 29
HB 29.Bill Version A.PDF HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
HB 29
HB 29.Fiscal Note.pdf HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
HB 29
HB 29.Presentation.pdf HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
HB 29
HB 29.Sectional.pdf HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
HB 29
HB 29.Backup Letters of Support.pdf HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
HB 29
HB 29.Backup ADN Article.pdf HL&C 4/24/2019 3:15:00 PM
HB 29