Legislature(2021 - 2022)DAVIS 106

03/22/2021 03:15 PM LABOR & COMMERCE

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Audio Topic
04:01:33 PM Start
04:02:18 PM HB117
04:31:28 PM HB132
07:29:21 PM State Board of Physical Therapy & Occupation Therapy
07:30:28 PM Adjourn
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
-- Please Note Location Change --
*+ HB 117 EXTEND BOARD OF DIRECT-ENTRY MIDWIVES TELECONFERENCED
Heard & Held
-- Testimony <Invitation Only> --
+= HB 132 SCHOOL APPRENTICESHIP PROGS; TAX CREDITS TELECONFERENCED
Moved CSHB 132(L&C) Out of Committee
-- Invited & Public Testimony --
John Hakala, Alaska State Director, U.S. Dept.
of Labor, Office of Apprenticeship
+ Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled TELECONFERENCED
+ Consideration of Governor's Appointees: TELECONFERENCED
- Alaska Labor Relations Agency
- State Board of Registration for Architects,
Engineers & Land Surveyors
- Workers' Compensation Appeals Commission
- State Physical Therapy & Occupational Therapy
Board
**Streamed live on AKL.tv**
                    ALASKA STATE LEGISLATURE                                                                                  
          HOUSE LABOR AND COMMERCE STANDING COMMITTEE                                                                         
                         March 22, 2021                                                                                         
                           4:01 p.m.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Representative Zack Fields, Co-Chair                                                                                            
Representative Ivy Spohnholz, Co-Chair                                                                                          
Representative Calvin Schrage                                                                                                   
Representative Liz Snyder                                                                                                       
Representative David Nelson                                                                                                     
Representative James Kaufman                                                                                                    
Representative Ken McCarty                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
All members present                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 117                                                                                                              
"An Act extending the termination date of the Board of Certified                                                                
Direct-Entry Midwives; and providing for an effective date."                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
     - HEARD & HELD                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 132                                                                                                              
"An  Act relating  to  technical  education and  apprenticeships;                                                               
relating to  concurrent vocational  education, training,  and on-                                                               
the-job  trade  experience  programs  for  students  enrolled  in                                                               
public secondary schools; relating  to child labor; and providing                                                               
for an effective date."                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
     - MOVED CSHB 132(L&C) OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CONFIRMATION HEARING(S)                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Alaska Labor Relations Agency                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
     Tyler Andrews - Anchorage                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
     - CONFIRMATION(S) ADVANCED                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
State Board of Registration for Architects, Engineers & Land                                                                  
Surveyors                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     Fred Wallis - Healy                                                                                                        
     Robert "Bob" Bell - Anchorage                                                                                              
     Jeffrey Garness - Anchorage                                                                                                
     Loren Leman - Anchorage                                                                                                    
     Edward Leonetti - Anchorage                                                                                                
     Randall Rozie - Fairbanks                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
     - CONFIRMATION(S) ADVANCED                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Workers' Compensation Appeals Commission                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     Deidre Ford - Anchorage                                                                                                    
     Amy Steele - Anchorage                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     - CONFIRMATION(S) ADVANCED                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
State Board of Physical Therapy & Occupation Therapy                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
     Lisa Radley - Anchorage                                                                                                    
     Rebecca Dean - Fairbanks                                                                                                   
     Jodi Pfieffer - Fairbanks                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
     - CONFIRMATION(S) ADVANCED                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
PREVIOUS COMMITTEE ACTION                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
BILL: HB 117                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE: EXTEND BOARD OF DIRECT-ENTRY MIDWIVES                                                                              
SPONSOR(s): REPRESENTATIVE(s) ORTIZ                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
03/01/21       (H)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
03/01/21       (H)       L&C, FIN                                                                                               
03/22/21       (H)       L&C AT 3:15 PM DAVIS 106                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
BILL: HB 132                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE: SCHOOL APPRENTICESHIP PROGS; TAX CREDITS                                                                           
SPONSOR(s): LABOR & COMMERCE                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
03/10/21       (H)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
03/10/21       (H)       L&C, EDC, FIN                                                                                          
03/15/21       (H)       L&C AT 6:30 PM BARNES 124                                                                              
03/15/21       (H)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
03/15/21       (H)       MINUTE(L&C)                                                                                            
03/22/21       (H)       L&C AT 3:15 PM DAVIS 106                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
WITNESS REGISTER                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE DAN ORTIZ                                                                                                        
Alaska State Legislature                                                                                                        
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Introduced HB 117 as prime sponsor.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
KRIS CURTIS, Legislative Auditor                                                                                                
Legislative Audit Division                                                                                                      
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION  STATEMENT:   Presented  the  legislative  audit on  the                                                             
Board of  Certified Direct Entry  Midwives during the  hearing on                                                               
HB 117.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
BETHEL BELISLE, Chair                                                                                                           
Board of Certified Direct-Entry Midwives                                                                                        
Division of Corporations, Business, and Professional Licensing                                                                  
Department of Commerce, Community, and Economic Development                                                                     
Anchorage, Alaska                                                                                                               
POSITION STATEMENT:  Provided testimony  during the hearing on HB
117.                                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
SARA CHAMBERS, Director                                                                                                         
Division of Corporation, Business, and Professional Licensing                                                                   
Department of Commerce, Community and Economic Development                                                                      
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:   Provided  testimony and  answered questions                                                             
during the hearing on HB 117.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
JOHN HAKALA, State Director                                                                                                     
Office of Apprenticeship                                                                                                        
Employment and Training Administration                                                                                          
U.S. Department of Labor                                                                                                        
Anchorage, Alaska                                                                                                               
POSITION  STATEMENT:   Offered a  PowerPoint presentation  during                                                             
the hearing on HB 132.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
ACTION NARRATIVE                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
4:01:33 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  ZACK  FIELDS  called   the  House  Labor  and  Commerce                                                             
Standing   Committee    meeting   to    order   at    4:01   p.m.                                                               
Representatives  Fields,  Spohnholz,  Snyder,  and  Schrage  were                                                               
present at the call to  order.  Representatives McCarty, Kaufman,                                                               
and Nelson arrived as the meeting was in progress.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
          HB 117-EXTEND BOARD OF DIRECT-ENTRY MIDWIVES                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
4:02:18 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR FIELDS announced that the  first order of business would                                                               
be HOUSE BILL NO. 117, "An  Act extending the termination date of                                                               
the Board  of Certified Direct-Entry Midwives;  and providing for                                                               
an effective date."                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
4:02:28 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  DAN ORTIZ,  Alaska State  Legislature, introduced                                                               
HB  117 as  prime  sponsor.   He explained  that  the bill  would                                                               
extend the  termination date for  the Board of  Certified Direct-                                                               
Entry Midwives to  June 30, 2023, as recommended  by the Division                                                               
of Legislative Audit  (DLA).  He said that the  board is composed                                                               
of five  members: two direct-entry  midwives, one  physician, one                                                               
certified  nurse  midwife,  and   one  public  member.    Statute                                                               
dictates  the  responsibilities  of  the board,  he  said,  which                                                               
include   examining  and   issuing   certificates  and   permits,                                                               
establishing   regulations   for   certification   and   practice                                                               
requirements,  ordering   disciplinary  actions,   and  approving                                                               
curricula and  standards for  education and  training.   He noted                                                               
that the  bill has a nearly  $22,000 fiscal note, which  would be                                                               
paid for by the revenue from license fees.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
4:04:33 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
KRIS  CURTIS, Legislative  Auditor,  Legislative Audit  Division,                                                               
presented  the  legislative  audit  [included  in  the  committee                                                               
packet] on the  Board of Direct-Entry Midwives,  titled "A Sunset                                                               
Review  of the  Department of  Commerce, Community,  and Economic                                                               
Development, Board  of Certified Direct-Entry  Midwives (board)."                                                               
She  explained that  the  purpose  of the  audit  is to  discover                                                               
whether  the board  is serving  the interests  of the  public and                                                               
whether it should  be extended.  She read  the report conclusions                                                               
on  page  i  of  the  audit,  which  read  as  follows  [original                                                               
punctuation provided]:                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
     Overall, the audit concluded that  the board served the                                                                    
     public's interest by  conducting meetings in accordance                                                                    
     with  state laws  and effectively  certifying midwives.                                                                    
     The  board adopted  regulatory changes  to improve  the                                                                    
     profession, but failed to  pursue statutory changes due                                                                    
     to  concerns  over  related  costs.  Additionally,  the                                                                    
     audit   found  the   peer   review   process  was   not                                                                    
     effectively  monitored by  the  board and  improvements                                                                    
     were   needed  over   the  Division   of  Corporations,                                                                    
     Business    and   Professional    Licensing's   (DCBPL)                                                                    
     investigative process.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     In  accordance with  AS 08.03.010(c)(8),  the board  is                                                                    
     scheduled to  terminate on June 30,  2021. We recommend                                                                    
     the  legislature extend  the  board's termination  date                                                                    
     two  years, to  June 30,  2023, which  is significantly                                                                    
     less than  the eight-year  maximum allowed  in statute.                                                                    
     The  reduced extension  is due  to an  issue identified                                                                    
     during the  audit that may  impact the  board's ability                                                                    
     to  protect the  public and  the board's  reluctance to                                                                    
     recommend  statutory  changes   in  the  public's  best                                                                    
     interest. The details of the  issue are not included in                                                                    
     this  report  to  preserve the  confidentiality  of  an                                                                    
     ongoing investigation.  The reduced  extension reflects                                                                    
     the need for continued oversight.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
MS. CUTRIS then directed attention to  page 7 of the audit, which                                                               
shows  a scheduling  of  licensing statistics.    She noted  that                                                               
there were  51 certified midwives  and apprentices as  of January                                                               
31, 2020.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
MS.  CURTIS turned  to page  8,  which depicted  the schedule  of                                                               
fees.   She said that  the fees were  raised in fiscal  year 2017                                                               
(FY 17) to address a deficit, and  as a result, the board has one                                                               
of the highest occupational fees of any occupation.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
MS.  CURTIS  turned to  page  9,  which  included a  schedule  of                                                               
revenues and  expenditures showing that  the board had  a deficit                                                               
of just over  $19,000 as of January 2020.   She explained that at                                                               
the  time  of  the  audit,  the management  of  the  Division  of                                                               
Corporations, Business and Professional  Licensing (DCBPL) was of                                                               
the opinion that  the deficit would be fully resolved  by the end                                                               
of FY 21.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
MS. CURTIS read  excerpts of the recommendations on  pages 11 and                                                               
12, which read as follows [original punctuation provided]:                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     Recommendation 1                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
     The  board  should  recommend  statutory  changes  that                                                                    
     benefit the public.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
     The  board identified  a need  to change  certification                                                                    
     statutes   to  align   Alaska's  midwifery   laws  with                                                                    
     national  standards. However,  due to  the legal  costs                                                                    
     involved with the project, the  board did not recommend                                                                    
     statutory changes.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
     Recommendation 2                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
     DCBPL's     chief     investigator    should     ensure                                                                    
     investigations are completed timely.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
     Three cases open  over 180 days from  July 2016 through                                                                    
     January  2020 were  evaluated  by  auditors. All  three                                                                    
     were found  to have  unjustified periods  of inactivity                                                                    
     ranging  between 54  and 114  days. It  was also  noted                                                                    
     that supervisory review  of two of the  three cases was                                                                    
     not  documented   as  required  by   DCBPL  procedures,                                                                    
     indicating review  did not occur  or did occur  and was                                                                    
     not   documented.  According   to   DCBPL  staff,   the                                                                    
     inactivity  was the  result of  turnover and  competing                                                                    
     priorities.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     Recommendation 3                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
     The board  should improve oversight of  the peer review                                                                    
     process.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
     The  board  delegated  peer  reviews  to  the  Midwives                                                                    
     Association  of  Alaska's   Action  and  Accountability                                                                    
     Committee.  However,   the  board  did   not  establish                                                                    
     procedures  to  provide  assurance  that  reviews  were                                                                    
     adequately completed.  The board  did not  consider the                                                                    
     need for  or importance  of monitoring the  peer review                                                                    
     process.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
     According  to  AS  08.65.030(b),   the  board  may,  by                                                                    
     regulation, require  a CDM undergo a  uniform or random                                                                    
     period  of  peer  review to  ensure  quality  of  care.                                                                    
     Inadequate  monitoring  of   the  peer  review  process                                                                    
     increases the risk that the  reviews will be deficient,                                                                    
     which increases the risk to public safety.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MS.  CURTIS  directed  attention  to  page  23,  which  discussed                                                               
responses to the  audit.  She noted that the  commissioner of the                                                               
Department  of  Commerce,   Community  and  Economic  Development                                                               
(DCCED) did  not respond to  Recommendations 1 and  three because                                                               
these  recommendations  were directed  only  to  the board.    In                                                               
response to Recommendation 2,  regarding improving the timeliness                                                               
of  investigation, the  commissioner shared  that the  department                                                               
was adding an additional supervisory  position to assist with the                                                               
caseload.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
MS.  CURTIS directed  attention to  page 27,  which included  the                                                               
board  chair's response  to the  audit.   She explained  that the                                                               
chair   expressed  disappointment   with  the   "short,  two-year                                                               
extension  recommendation."     Regarding  Recommendation  1,  to                                                               
pursue statutory  changes when  needed, she  said that  the chair                                                               
characterized the board's inaction  as "justified" because it was                                                               
a way  to reduce costs,  and further  noted that the  board chair                                                               
expressed that the  board should not be  penalized for practicing                                                               
what was  characterized as "fiscal responsibility."   In response                                                               
to   Recommendation   2,   regarding  the   timeliness   of   the                                                               
investigative process, Ms. Curtis  said the board chair concurred                                                               
with  the recommendation  but  was  not of  the  opinion that  it                                                               
should impact  the extension recommendation.   She said  that the                                                               
board chair concurred with Recommendation 3.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
4:10:00 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
BETHEL BELISLE, Chair, Board  of Certified Direct-Entry Midwives,                                                               
said that  the audit  caused several  concerns and  discussed the                                                               
peer review process  as addressed in Recommendation  3, which the                                                               
board delegates  to the Midwives  Association of  Alaska's Action                                                               
and Accountability  Committee (AAC),  composed of members  of the                                                               
Board of Certified  Direct-Entry Midwives who have  been voted in                                                               
by  other members.   She  explained  that when  a chart  includes                                                               
certain circumstances,  which could include  emergency transport,                                                               
care in the Neonatal Intensive Care  Unit (NICU), or the death of                                                               
a  mother and  baby, the  chart is  then submitted  to AAC.   The                                                               
committee  reviews the  chart to  determine  whether the  midwife                                                               
broke any statutes  or regulations; if so, AAC  sends the charges                                                               
to the  full board  for review.   At the time  of the  audit, she                                                               
said, there were no charts being  sent to the board.  In response                                                               
to the  determination by the  audit that  AAC was not  "doing its                                                               
proper  job," the  board initiated  an  audit that  called for  a                                                               
complete review of  all charts submitted since 2014.   She shared                                                               
that, while  the review committee  has found nothing  to indicate                                                               
that  AAC has  failed to  do  its job,  the board  has begun  the                                                               
process of  revamping the peer review  committee, giving midwives                                                               
the  ability to  have  confidential peer  review  but giving  the                                                               
board  complete   oversight  over   any  outcome   that  requires                                                               
emergency services in NICU stay or death.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
MS. BELISLE then  addressed the Recommendation 1  from the audit,                                                               
identified as  a need to  change certification statutes  to align                                                               
Alaska's   midwifery  laws   with   national   standards.     She                                                               
characterized  this  change  as "difficult"  and  expressed  that                                                               
Alaska  has always  been a  leader in  the standard  of midwifery                                                               
care, and that all current  statutes meet or exceed the Certified                                                               
Professional Midwife  (CPM) model.   The licensure fee  is $3,800                                                               
every two years,  she said, and the fiscal  responsibility of the                                                               
board is to pay off debt.   She concluded that she would like the                                                               
board's sunset  audit be  changed to four  years rather  than two                                                               
years, due to the progress that the board has already made.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
4:13:42 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  FIELDS  asked Ms.  Belisle  to  explain the  difference                                                               
between a  certified nurse midwife  and a  certified direct-entry                                                               
midwife.   He then asked  whether the legislature's action  on HB
117  would have  any impact  on  Alaskans who  receive care  from                                                               
certified nurse midwives.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
MS. BELISLE  responded that certified  nurse midwives  are nurses                                                               
who have  gone through higher  education and have a  larger scope                                                               
of practice than certified direct-entry  midwives.  She said that                                                               
CDE midwives  go through the  process of doing  an apprenticeship                                                               
followed by  a national exam  and have  a much narrower  scope of                                                               
practice than certified  nurse midwives.  She  explained that the                                                               
standard   she   referenced    earlier   is   called   "certified                                                               
professional  midwife," which  is a  national certification  that                                                               
acknowledges a nurse midwife has  met or exceeded a minimal level                                                               
of practice  standards.  She stated  that a change in  the sunset                                                               
date would not impact certified nurse midwives in any way.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
4:15:06 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR SPOHNHOLZ  asked Ms. Belisle  to describe  the alignment                                                               
of  educational standards  in Alaska  to national  standards, and                                                               
what would be involved in the changes.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
MS.  BELISLE  explained  that  certified  nurse  midwives,  until                                                               
recently, were required to have  taken a course of study approved                                                               
by  the  Board  of  Certified Direct-Entry  Midwives,  which  was                                                               
generally  sourced from  an  online school  and  did not  involve                                                               
college credit.   In 2020,  she said, the standards  were changed                                                               
to require that,  in order to become a midwife,  courses be taken                                                               
through   a   school   accredited  by   the   Midwife   Education                                                               
Accreditation  Council   (MEAC).     She  expressed   that  MEAC-                                                               
accredited schools  limit the ability of  practitioners to become                                                               
midwives because  they're online schools that  include components                                                               
requiring  students to  travel  for  different skills  workshops.                                                               
She said  that the cost  of a MEAC-accredited school  has limited                                                               
the number of apprentices applying  for licensure.  She said that                                                               
the national standard referenced in  the audit states "any method                                                               
to midwifery,"  which could mean  that the board could  return to                                                               
what was originally used as an approved course of study.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR SPOHNHOLZ  asked Ms. Belisle  whether she  is suggesting                                                               
that   aligning  Alaska's   standards  with   MEAC  accreditation                                                               
standards would be rolling back standards in the state.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
MS. BELISLE  responded that it  would be widening  the standards.                                                               
She  said   that  every   midwife  has  to   take  part   in  the                                                               
apprenticeship model and  then the national test.   She explained                                                               
that currently, it  is limited to the MEAC schooling  in the form                                                               
of a "college  type" degree, but if expanded to  the national CPM                                                               
standard, it would  allow for either option.  She  noted that she                                                               
recently resumed her training to take  the MEAC courses and is of                                                               
the  opinion that  widening the  standards  would be  preferable,                                                               
because passing the national test is what really matters.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  SPOHNHOLZ  asked  Ms.  Belisle  to  describe  the  time                                                               
commitment by midwives during apprenticeship training in Alaska.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
MS. BELISLE  responded that the  board requires a minimum  of 100                                                               
prenatal  visits, a  minimum of  65  births including  observing,                                                               
assisting, and  primary care,  and a  minimum of  100 post-partum                                                               
visits and newborn exams.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
4:18:40 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  MCCARTY recalled  Ms. Belisle's  earlier comments                                                               
about the fiscal responsibility to pay  down debt.  He asked what                                                               
the debt is and the reason for it.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
MS. BELISLE replied  that she only recently joined  the board and                                                               
said  that  a  subsequent  testifier  could  likely  answer  that                                                               
question better.   She  stated that the  debt was  incurred about                                                               
eight years  ago and  was "several  hundred thousand"  dollars in                                                               
investigations that were applied to the board.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
4:19:39 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
SARA CHAMBERS,  Director, Division of Corporation,  Business, and                                                               
Professional  Licensing, Department  of  Commerce, Community  and                                                               
Economic  Development,  responded   to  Representative  McCarty's                                                               
question.    She  said  that   the  board  has  approximately  50                                                               
licensees, which she  said is a "small number," but  has the same                                                               
resources for  investigative activity  as any  other board.   She                                                               
explained that the reason for  this is that AS 08.01.065 requires                                                               
all licensing  programs to be  self-funded.  She said  that there                                                               
is  a greater  chance of  serious investigations  in the  medical                                                               
industry,  and licensees  will often  challenge and  appeal board                                                               
decisions.    There  have  been  significant  investigations  and                                                               
appeals for which  the board has incurred legal  costs, she said,                                                               
and  expressed  that  a  board   regulating  a  large  number  of                                                               
licensees  would not  have incurred  that level  of debt  because                                                               
there  would be  a sufficient  number of  licensees to  pay these                                                               
fees.                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
4:21:52 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  MCCARTY asked  how many  licensees are  needed to                                                               
make the board self-sustaining.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MS.  CHAMBERS  replied  that the  licensee  fees  were  increased                                                               
several  years  ago.   She  said  that  the number  of  licensees                                                               
required to  make the board  self-sustaining isn't  known because                                                               
there  are  too many  factors  that  can't  be enumerated.    She                                                               
recalled   that  there   was   discussion   during  a   different                                                               
legislative audit  that it might  make sense to merge  this board                                                               
with  another, but  the board  and  the industry  shared that  it                                                               
would strongly prefer  to remain autonomous.   She concluded that                                                               
for  the  second quarter  ending  December  31, 2020,  the  board                                                               
posted its first surplus for the year to date.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  MCCARTY  expressed  his  understanding  that  the                                                               
board  has enough  licensees to  exist,  but investigations  have                                                               
caused  the debt.   He  said that  his experience  lends him  the                                                               
understanding  that  investigations  have  a "cap"  in  order  to                                                               
ensure  that   any  individual  board  is   not  overburdened  by                                                               
investigative costs.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MS. CHAMBERS replied that capping  investigative costs is an idea                                                               
that the  department has tried to  bring to the attention  of the                                                               
legislature for years.  She  alluded to an unsuccessful bill that                                                               
would have created a cost equalization model.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
4:26:06 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SNYDER asked Ms.  Chambers whether she could speak                                                               
about  the magnitude  of the  anticipated legal  costs associated                                                               
with   aligning  Alaska's   midwifery  standards   with  national                                                               
standards.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
MS.   CHAMBERS   expressed   her   belief  that   there   was   a                                                               
misunderstanding  on the  part of  the previous  board about  the                                                               
cost, and  that there  would not  have been  a great  legal cost.                                                               
She  said the  claim  by  the board  doesn't  make  sense to  her                                                               
because  seeking a  legislative  sponsor would  not  come with  a                                                               
cost.   She noted that Ms.  Belisle, the board chair,  was not on                                                               
the board at the time of the confusion.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
4:27:45 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KAUFMAN  asked Ms. Belisle whether  there would be                                                               
hardship imposed by the two-year  extension period proposed under                                                               
HB  117, and  whether  it would  have a  tangible  impact on  the                                                               
board's ability to operate.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MS.  BELISLE replied  that it  feels  very "heavy"  to know  that                                                               
certain  actions   could  potentially   change  the   entire  way                                                               
certified  direct-entry midwives  operate.    She expressed  that                                                               
while extending the  sunset date by only two  years wouldn't have                                                               
a tangible  impact on  the board's ability  to operate,  she said                                                               
that "we'll be right back where we are today."                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
4:28:55 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR SPOHNHOLZ  asked Ms. Belisle whether  it's possible that                                                               
approving a two-year extension at  this time might give the board                                                               
the opportunity to document some of  the changes being made.  She                                                               
shared  her understanding  that the  board is  in the  process of                                                               
implementing  changes,   and  she   suggested  that   a  two-year                                                               
extension  could  possibly  give  the board  the  opportunity  to                                                               
complete and document those efforts  and later seek an eight-year                                                               
extension from the committee.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
MS. BELISLE replied that it  would motivate the board to complete                                                               
the  changes.   She said  that the  peer review  process will  be                                                               
completed  in  April  2021,  which is  also  when  the  statutory                                                               
changes will be completed.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
4:30:00 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KAUFMAN asked Co-Chair  Fields whether there would                                                               
be a  benefit to hearing  HB 117 in  the House Health  and Social                                                               
Services Standing Committee as well.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  FIELDS  responded  that  board  renewals  typically  go                                                               
through  the   House  Labor  and  Commerce   Standing  Committee,                                                               
notwithstanding the subject matter.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
4:30:38 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
The committee took an at-ease from 4:30 p.m. to 4:31 p.m.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
        HB 132-SCHOOL APPRENTICESHIP PROGS; TAX CREDITS                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
4:31:28 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR FIELDS announced  that the next order  of business would                                                               
be HOUSE  BILL NO. 132,  "An Act relating to  technical education                                                               
and   apprenticeships;   relating    to   concurrent   vocational                                                               
education,  training, and  on-the-job  trade experience  programs                                                               
for students  enrolled in public  secondary schools;  relating to                                                               
child labor; and providing for an effective date."                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
4:31:44 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
JOHN   HAKALA,   State   Director,  Office   of   Apprenticeship,                                                               
Employment  and  Training   Administration,  U.S.  Department  of                                                               
Labor, offered  a PowerPoint presentation [hard  copy included in                                                               
the  committee  packet],  titled  "Registered  Apprenticeship  in                                                               
Alaska;  Providing a  Foundation for  Career Success  and Skilled                                                               
Workers for  Businesses," and began  on slide 2,  "Agenda," which                                                               
read as follow [original punctuation provided]:                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
        • Apprenticeship 101                                                                                                    
        • Registered Apprenticeship in Alaska                                                                                   
        • Youth Apprenticeship Framework                                                                                        
        • Quality Pre-Apprenticeship Framework                                                                                  
        • Funding Announcement                                                                                                  
        • Questions                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
MR.   HAKALA   advanced  to   slide   3,   "What  is   Registered                                                               
Apprenticeship?"   and  explained   that  he   went  through   an                                                               
apprenticeship program  and became a journeyman  electrician as a                                                               
result  of  his  apprenticeship.    The  slide  read  as  follows                                                               
[original punctuation provided]:                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
        • Registered Apprenticeship is a national training                                                                      
          system that combines paid learning on-the-job and                                                                     
          related technical instruction in a skilled                                                                            
          occupation.                                                                                                           
        • The purpose  of   a  Registered   Apprenticeship                                                                      
          program  is to  enable  employers  to develop  and                                                                    
          apply  industry  standards  to  training  programs                                                                    
          that  can increase  productivity  and improve  the                                                                    
          quality of the workforce.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
MR. HAKALA paraphrased slide 4, "Federal Requirements," which                                                                   
read as follows [original punctuation provided]:                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
        • On-the-job training plan                                                                                              
        • Provisions for organized related instruction                                                                          
        • Progressive wage schedule                                                                                             
        • Adequate and safe equipment  and facilities  for                                                                      
          training                                                                                                              
        • Established apprentice progress evaluation                                                                            
        • Qualified training and supervision                                                                                    
        • EEO Pledge                                                                                                            
        • Minimum Age = 16 years                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
4:35:58 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR.  HAKALA  proceeded  to slide  5,  "Office  of  Apprenticeship                                                               
(OA)," and noted that he has  worked in this office for almost 23                                                               
years.    He  paraphrased  the   slide,  which  read  as  follows                                                               
[original punctuation provided]:                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
        • Established by the National Apprenticeship Act of                                                                     
          1937 (Fitzgerald Act)                                                                                                 
        • The purpose of the Fitzgerald Act is to set forth                                                                     
          labor standards to safeguard the welfare of                                                                           
          apprentices & promote apprenticeship opportunity                                                                      
          with industry                                                                                                         
        • OA is a  program  office  of  the  Employment  &                                                                      
          Training Administration of the U.S. Department of                                                                     
          Labor                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MR. HAKALA advanced to slide 6, "OA Functions & Services," which                                                                
read as follows [original punctuation provided]:                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
        • Registration agency                                                                                                   
        • Promotion and expansion of apprenticeship                                                                             
        • Assist  potential    sponsors   in    developing                                                                      
          apprenticeship training standards                                                                                     
        • Coordinates services with employment and training                                                                     
          programs                                                                                                              
        • Conduct program reviews and quality assessments                                                                       
        • Provide on-going technical assistance                                                                                 
        • Integration of apprenticeship with workforce                                                                          
          system                                                                                                                
        • State-Federal Apprenticeship Partnership                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
MR. HAKALA  presented slide 7, "Apprenticeship  Framework," which                                                               
read as follows [original punctuation provided]:                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
        • Structured on-the-job learning (OJL)                                                                                  
        • Supervision by qualified mentors                                                                                      
        • Combines related technical instruction (RTI)                                                                          
        • "Earn while you learn" format                                                                                         
        • Adaptable and industry-driven                                                                                         
        • Time, hybrid, or competency-based approaches                                                                          
        • Industry recognized certifications are portable                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
4:41:03 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  SPOHNHOLZ  asked whether  the  "earn  while you  learn"                                                               
format applies to all apprenticeships in Alaska.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
MR.  HAKALA   responded  that  every   registered  apprenticeship                                                               
program must have  a progressive wage schedule and  are all "earn                                                               
while you learn."  He explained  that fields such as midwifery or                                                               
hairdressing   include  the   term  "apprentice"   in  employment                                                               
contracts,  however  this  is not  connected  to  the  registered                                                               
apprentice  programs managed  by  his office.    He recalled  his                                                               
experience working with  midwives in trying to  help them develop                                                               
an  approved  occupation  to   become  registered  nationally  as                                                               
apprentices, but  his office  didn't get to  the point  where the                                                               
midwives   could  submit   the   occupation.     He  shared   his                                                               
understanding  that the  midwife occupation  has quite  a lot  to                                                               
consider moving forward.   He concluded that the  "earn while you                                                               
learn" format is imperative and  must include defined entry wages                                                               
and a structure for wages to scale according to experience.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR SPOHNHOLZ shared her  understanding that "registered" is                                                               
the operative  word as it relates  to the "earn while  you learn"                                                               
format.   She  asked Mr.  Hakala what  the barriers  would be  to                                                               
becoming registered in other fields, such as hairdressing.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
MR. HAKALA replied that he would  love for every occupation to be                                                               
"apprentice-able" in Alaska.   If an industry  is implementing an                                                               
apprenticeship model,  he said, it would  have the apprenticeship                                                               
framework in place, and the  industry would work with his office.                                                               
Many industries  are already doing  about 80 percent of  what the                                                               
apprenticeship  model  does, he  said,  such  as incremental  pay                                                               
raises.   He  noted that  it is  a difficult  question to  answer                                                               
because each industry is so different.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
4:45:16 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KAUFMAN asked  for the  definition of  registered                                                               
apprenticeship.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MR. HAKALA  replied that regulations  are discussed on  the final                                                               
page of the presentation.   The primary regulations from the Code                                                               
of Federal Regulations  that drive his office are 29  CFR Part 29                                                               
Subpart A and  29 CFR Part 30.   He said that  he will distribute                                                               
those regulations to the committee.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
4:46:34 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  FIELDS  listed  progressive wages,  the  mentor  ratio,                                                               
related technical  instruction, and  on-the-job training  as some                                                               
of  the benchmark  components to  apprenticeship.   He asked  Mr.                                                               
Hakala   to   share   any    other   benchmark   components   for                                                               
apprenticeship.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MR.  HAKALA   directed  attention   back  to   slide  7   of  his                                                               
presentation, which  detailed the  apprenticeship framework.   He                                                               
emphasized  the requirements  for  oversight  of apprentices  and                                                               
noted that  apprentices need a minimum  of 144 hours per  year of                                                               
related  technical  instruction.   He  noted  that there  are  23                                                               
standards  which  must  be  met  in  order  to  be  considered  a                                                               
registered apprenticeship program.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR FIELDS asked Mr. Hakala  for an outline of the structure                                                               
of the on-the-job learning framework  and for more details on the                                                               
standards of apprenticeship.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. HAKALA responded  that the core of the  program is on-the-job                                                               
learning,   which   is    supplemented   by   related   technical                                                               
instruction.   When  the program  was designed,  he said,  it was                                                               
intended  to  supply  all  information   "from  A  to  Z"  to  an                                                               
apprentice  about  a  chosen  profession.     He  explained  that                                                               
companies  sometimes  approach him  but  only  intend to  provide                                                               
apprenticeship and training for a  portion of the occupation, but                                                               
such  an arrangement  wouldn't be  considered for  the registered                                                               
apprenticeship program because it is  the goal of the program for                                                               
apprentices to learn every component.   He said that O*NET Online                                                               
[www.onetonline.org] is a good resource  for seeing the tasks and                                                               
detailed work activity of various occupations.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
4:50:39 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KAUFMAN  directed  attention to  the  faith-based                                                               
organizations listed  as apprenticeship  partners on slide  8 [to                                                               
be presented].  He asked  what an apprenticeship at a faith-based                                                               
organization would look like.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
MR. HAKALA responded that there  were initiatives a few years ago                                                               
by faith-based  organizations that  helped with recruitment.   He                                                               
said that  large organizations often conduct  outreach activities                                                               
to  get  assistance in  recruitment  and  will announce  position                                                               
openings   to   various   organizations   including   faith-based                                                               
organizations,  which could  include community  or Alaska  Native                                                               
organizations.    Such  organizations  can  also  become  program                                                               
sponsors for youth or adult occupations.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
4:52:06 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR.   HAKALA   continued   his   presentation   with   slide   8,                                                               
"Apprenticeship  Partners,"  which   read  as  follows  [original                                                               
punctuation provided]:                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
        • Businesses & Employer Associations                                                                                    
        • Labor Organizations                                                                                                   
        • Educational Institutions                                                                                              
        • Workforce Intermediaries                                                                                              
        • Alaska Native Organizations                                                                                           
        • Community-based Organizations                                                                                         
        • Faith-based Organizations                                                                                             
        • Government Agencies                                                                                                   
        • Workforce System                                                                                                      
        • Apprenticeship Grantees                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
MR.  HAKALA   proceeded  to  slide  9,   "How  is  Apprenticeship                                                               
Different from Other Work-based  Learning Models?", which read as                                                               
follows [original punctuation provided]:                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
      Apprenticeship training is distinguished from other                                                                       
     types of workplace training by several factors:                                                                            
      (1) Apprenticeships are jobs! Apprentices earn wages                                                                      
     from their employers during training;                                                                                      
    (2)   Apprenticeship    programs   provide   on-the-job                                                                     
     learning and job-related classroom training;                                                                               
        (3) On-the-job learning is conducted in the work                                                                        
     setting under the direction of a mentor(s); and                                                                            
       (4) Training results in an industry-recognized and                                                                       
     portable credential.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
4:55:41 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SNYDER  asked Mr. Hakala whether  he could provide                                                               
a range of apprentice wages.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR.  HAKALA replied  that  in the  trades,  apprentices may  earn                                                               
"quite a  lot of money," beginning  at 50 percent of  the journey                                                               
worker's scale,  which in  the private  sector could  be anywhere                                                               
from $25  to $45  per hour.   Health  care occupations,  he said,                                                               
earn less as  a whole and apprentices may start  at $12 per hour,                                                               
finishing  at $18.    He  noted that  earnings  can generally  be                                                               
higher in rural Alaska, but still  vary greatly.  He said that he                                                               
occasionally assists organizations  in developing wage schedules,                                                               
using  resources  such  as  the  Research  and  Analysis  website                                                               
through the Department of Labor  and Workforce Development, which                                                               
details  wages   across  Alaska.    He   recalled  challenges  in                                                               
determining  pay scale  for apprentices  in  the early  childhood                                                               
development  industry,  with   organizations  wanting  apprentice                                                               
wages  to be  on  par  with those  of  employees with  bachelor's                                                               
degrees.    He observed  that  an  apprentice who  completes  the                                                               
program  always  earns  more  than   the  individual  would  have                                                               
otherwise  and   has  additional  opportunities   for  managerial                                                               
progressions within the company.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
4:58:45 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR SPOHNHOLZ asked Mr. Hakala  to detail apprenticeships in                                                               
early childhood education that take place in Alaska.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MR.  HAKALA   responded  that  it's   a  two-year,   early  child                                                               
development apprenticeship program  with opportunity he described                                                               
as "gigantic."   He shared that  he is confident that  if he were                                                               
to   start  having   conversations  with   the  early   childhood                                                               
development community in Alaska,  an apprenticeship program could                                                               
be achieved.   Non-profits, however, depend more  on "soft funds"                                                               
than do  labor management  programs that are  able to  fund their                                                               
own  training  centers;  this  is a  limiting  factor,  he  said,                                                               
because program  development becomes more difficult  when funding                                                               
comes from sources like grants.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
5:01:00 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  FIELDS commented  that  construction  jobs are  "living                                                               
wage"  jobs,  while  the  same   is  not  true  with  regards  to                                                               
childcare.   If  a living  wage is  not offered,  he said,  it is                                                               
difficult to support an apprenticeship program.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
5:01:30 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. HAKALA  added that  Alaska Primary  Care was  a result  of an                                                               
American Apprenticeship Initiative grant.   He said that although                                                               
the program  did not easily  come together in the  beginning, the                                                               
program  is now  "beautiful,"  with the  addition of  occupations                                                               
such  as pharmacy  tech.   He  said that  with  regards to  early                                                               
childhood development,  he was unable to  convince the University                                                               
of  Alaska to  work  with him  on a  curriculum,  so instead  his                                                               
office works with  a university in Virginia that  agreed to share                                                               
the school's curriculum.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
MR. HAKALA continued his presentation  on slide 10, "Benefits for                                                               
Apprentices,"  which   read  as  follows   [original  punctuation                                                               
provided]:                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
        • Skill development                                                                                                     
        • Earn and learn                                                                                                        
        • Career pathway to higher skills and wages                                                                             
        • Career advancement opportunities                                                                                      
      • Training under the guidance of qualified mentors                                                                        
        • Nationally recognized credentials                                                                                     
        • College credits                                                                                                       
        • Apprentices graduates earn up to $300 thousand                                                                        
          dollars more during their careers than non-                                                                           
          apprentice workers                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. HAKALA  moved to slide  11, "Benefits for  Businesses," which                                                               
read as follows [original punctuation provided]:                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
        • Increase employee retention                                                                                           
        • Effective recruitment tool                                                                                            
        • Cost-efficient training model                                                                                         
        • Trained and educated workforce                                                                                        
        • Transfer of knowledge, skills and expertise                                                                           
        • Improved quality of services & client care                                                                            
        • Develops future leadership                                                                                            
        • Invest in your community                                                                                              
        • On average, employers realize an average return                                                                       
          on investment of $1.47                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
5:05:24 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. HAKALA continued  to slide 12, "Benefits for  Alaska - Social                                                               
&  Economic,"   which  read  as  follows   [original  punctuation                                                               
provided]:                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
        • Stabilize the Alaskan workforce                                                                                       
        • Learn and train locally                                                                                               
        • Employed apprentices purchase goods, services,                                                                        
          vehicles,    snowmobiles,    4-wheelers,    boats,                                                                    
          airplanes and homes.                                                                                                  
     • Increase supply of highly skilled Alaskan workers                                                                        
        • Reduce recruitment of out of state workers                                                                            
        • Future business leaders                                                                                               
        • Aligns with and advances goals of key workforce                                                                       
          system initiatives                                                                                                    
        • Every $1 invested in apprenticeships leads to a                                                                       
         public return of approximately $28 in benefits                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
5:06:18 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR FIELDS interjected  to encourage members to  look at the                                                               
extensive trend  articles released  by the Research  and Analysis                                                               
Division of  the Department of  Labor and  Workforce Development,                                                               
which studied this issue in 2009 and again in 2019.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
5:06:41 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. HAKALA  noted that  registered apprenticeship  wasn't written                                                               
into the Workforce  Investment Act of 1998 (WIA),  and his office                                                               
at the  USDOL was figuring  out how to  integrate apprenticeships                                                               
with the  WIA.   Registered apprenticeship  was written  into the                                                               
Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act  of 2014 (WIOA), and Mr.                                                               
Hakala said  that, due to  the components inherent to  the design                                                               
of the registered apprentice model,  such as structured training,                                                               
mentorship,  pre- and  post-employment  earnings, the  registered                                                               
apprenticeship model fits well with WIOA.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
MR.  HAKALA moved  to slide  13, "Apprentices  in Alaska,"  which                                                               
read as follows [original punctuation provided]:                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
        • Registered apprenticeship is a proven workforce                                                                       
          development    strategy   that    supports   local                                                                    
          economies, builds worker skills, and establishes                                                                      
          career pathways to higher levels of employment                                                                        
          and wages.                                                                                                            
        • Registered apprenticeships in the construction                                                                        
          and building trades have been active in Alaska                                                                        
          since the 1940's.                                                                                                     
        • Registered apprenticeships in Alaska train union                                                                      
          and non-union apprentices in 68 occupations, 16                                                                       
          occupation    groups/industries,    and   in    21                                                                    
          borough/census areas.                                                                                                 
        • Hundreds of millions of private dollars have been                                                                     
          invested   in   apprentices   and   apprenticeship                                                                    
          training centers across the state.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
5:08:57 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  FIELDS asked  Mr.  Hakala about  the  annual cost,  per                                                               
apprentice,  in  a  National  Electrical  Contractors-Association                                                               
International  Brotherhood  of   Electrical  Workers  (NECA-IBEW)                                                               
apprenticeship.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
5:09:16 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. HAKALA  replied that  it varies.   Labor  management programs                                                               
have a dedicated amount to  invest in workforce training, such as                                                               
paying $1 per hour into a  training fund.  He said that investing                                                               
in  workforce  training  is  how  the  registered  apprenticeship                                                               
programs survive, and he explained  that the soft-funded programs                                                               
take a different  viewpoint on sustainability.  He  said he tries                                                               
to help  those programs  establish a  fee structure  and business                                                               
model for a path to sustainability.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
5:11:04 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KAUFMAN   asked  Mr.  Hakala   whether  committee                                                               
members  can  view the  various  revenue  streams that  fund  the                                                               
registered  apprenticeship   program.     He  asked,   "Is  there                                                               
veterans' money  that goes into  these programs as  well, similar                                                               
to other continuing education?"                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MR.  HAKALA  responded  that programs  typically  use  the  State                                                               
Training & Employment Program (STEP)  for funding, in addition to                                                               
funds  from WIOA,  with the  funds generally  distributed through                                                               
the job  centers.   There are  a variety  of funding  streams, he                                                               
said,  and  there  are active  federal  apprenticeship  expansion                                                               
grants in  Alaska right  now.   He said  that his  office doesn't                                                               
help fund  the programs,  he simply  designs them  and determines                                                               
how to make the programs  efficient and cost-effective.  He noted                                                               
that  registered apprenticeship  programs  are also  pre-approved                                                               
for  the Government  Issue  (GI) Bill,  which  could include  all                                                               
costs  related to  college such  as tuition  or the  differential                                                               
between the entry-level apprentice wage and the journey wage.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
5:14:33 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR FIELDS announced that the  committee would recess to the                                                               
call of the chair.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
6:37:31 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR FIELDS called the House  Labor and Commerce meeting back                                                               
to order at  6:37 p.m.  Representatives  Fields, Snyder, Schrage,                                                               
and   McCarty  were   present  at   the  call   back  to   order.                                                               
Representatives Spohnholz  and Nelson arrived as  the meeting was                                                               
in progress.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
6:37:41 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. HAKALA  told committee members that  he sent an email  to Co-                                                               
Chair   Fields  that   included   apprenticeship  standards   and                                                               
occupation  schedules   for  veterinary  technicians,   pipe  and                                                               
operation technicians, airframe and  power plant mechanics, and a                                                               
couple of medical  occupations.  Also included in  the email were                                                               
10 examples  of potential  funding streams,  which Representative                                                               
Kaufman  had  asked  about,  and   he  said  that  apprenticeship                                                               
starting  wages  range  from  $15  to $28  per  hour  across  all                                                               
occupations in Alaska, with exit wages up to $48 per hour.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
MS.   HAKALA   resumed   his    presentation   with   slide   14,                                                               
"Apprenticeship  in  Alaska,"  which read  as  follows  [original                                                               
punctuation provided]:                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
        • Program Sponsors = 283                                                                                                
        • Multi employer = 22                                                                                                   
        • Single employer = 261                                                                                                 
        • Total employers participating = 796                                                                                   
        • 68 active apprenticeship occupations                                                                                  
        • 16 occupation groups/industries                                                                                       
        • Primarily  in    construction   &    extraction;                                                                      
          installation,    maintenance    &   repair,    and                                                                    
          healthcare categories                                                                                                 
        • Total Active Apprentices = 1931                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
6:40:00 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR FIELDS interjected to verify whether both multi-                                                                       
employer  and single  employer sponsors  could be  union or  non-                                                               
union.                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
MR.  HAKALA  replied  that  is  correct, and  he  said  that  the                                                               
majority  are  non-union.    He  noted  that  the  apprenticeship                                                               
program is tailored to the needs of each employer.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
6:41:44 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE NELSON  asked how long  it takes for  a registered                                                               
apprentice to complete the program.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
MR. HAKALA  replied that the apprenticeship  program is described                                                               
in either hours  or years and allows some leeway.   For instance,                                                               
he said, a  four-year construction program might take  5 years to                                                               
complete;  depending  on the  occupation,  the  program can  take                                                               
anywhere  from one  to five  years.   He noted  that construction                                                               
apprenticeships can  take longer due  to cycles in  the industry,                                                               
but  that health  care occupations  operate year-round,  so those                                                               
apprentices are more able to stay on a timeline.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  NELSON  asked  whether the  completion  rate  has                                                               
increased from the 2014 level of 26 percent.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. HAKALA  responded that the  completion rate is  a complicated                                                               
formula using,  in part, the  apprenticeship start date  plus one                                                               
year.    He  said  there's   a  probationary  period  wherein  an                                                               
apprentice can cancel their participation,  and those don't count                                                               
against  the program's  metrics.    He said  that  in  FY 20  the                                                               
program saw  99 completions,  whereas a  typical year  would have                                                               
225 -275 completions  each year in the system.   Some occupations                                                               
have a  higher cancellation  rate than others,  he said,  but the                                                               
overall    annual   completion    rate   within    the   national                                                               
apprenticeship system is 41 percent.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  NELSON  expressed   the  understanding  that  275                                                               
completions  in   1,931  apprentices  equates  to   a  7  percent                                                               
completion rate,  which, he said, is  "a very small amount."   He                                                               
said that he would like to see more numbers.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. HAKALA replied that he doesn't  disagree.  He said that there                                                               
are cancelations  in every training  program, and  it's preferred                                                               
that if  the apprentice leaves  the program it's done  within the                                                               
first  year.   He  noted that  there is  a  statistics page  with                                                               
current    data     for    each    state    on     the    website                                                               
www.apprenticeship.gov.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
6:47:01 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR SPOHNHOLZ  noted that it's likely  that some apprentices                                                               
are in multi-year programs.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MR.   HAKALA  said   yes,  programs   such  as   electrician  and                                                               
pipefitting take  5 years,  and each  occupation has  a different                                                               
timeline for completion.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  SPOHNHOLZ commented  that the  earlier characterization                                                               
of  the  program  as  having  a  7  percent  completion  rate  is                                                               
inaccurate, since many of the  1,931 apprentices in Alaska are in                                                               
multi-year  programs.    She  noted   that  with  the  healthcare                                                               
apprenticeships being  much shorter,  one would  expect to  see a                                                               
higher completion rate in those occupations.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
6:48:24 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  FIELDS interjected  to  comment that  the primary  care                                                               
association has an "impressive"  completion rate, but occupations                                                               
in the traditional building trades  have more participants, which                                                               
is  the reason  for  the efforts  to  expand the  non-traditional                                                               
building occupations.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
6:48:37 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE NELSON said that his  comments about the 7 percent                                                               
completion  rate came  from  a study  of  Alaska economic  trends                                                               
between 2004 and 2014, encompassing  all industries in the state,                                                               
which   said    that   "only   26   actually    completed   their                                                               
apprenticeships,  while  only  56 percent  cancelled  or  dropped                                                               
out."                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR FIELDS  asked whether  shifting from  one apprenticeship                                                               
program to another would count as a cancellation.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
MR.  HAKALA  said  that  the  2014  trends  study  included  "bad                                                               
numbers"  and that  the study  was never  vetted with  his office                                                               
before it was published.   He suggested a longitudinal study from                                                               
2009 for reference, which he described as "accurate."                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE NELSON  said that  he would like  to see  the 2009                                                               
longitudinal study.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
MR. HAKALA said,  "It was a 10-year study:  the Alaska [Economic]                                                               
Trends [February] 2009 Apprenticeships in Alaska."                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  NELSON said  that  he referenced  the 2014  study                                                               
because  the   commissioner  of  the  Department   of  Labor  and                                                               
Workforce Development, Heidi Drygas, had put her name on it.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. HAKALA stressed  that the 2014 publication  was "not accurate                                                               
at all,"  and he described  being upset  that he wasn't  asked to                                                               
review  it.    He  then  asked  Co-Chair  Fields  to  repeat  his                                                               
question.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
6:51:19 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR FIELDS  asked whether a transfer  between apprenticeship                                                               
programs constitutes a cancellation.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MR. HAKALA  responded that apprentices  used to be tracked  by an                                                               
identification  (ID)  number,  which  would be  attached  to  the                                                               
individual through their entire  apprenticeship experience.  Now,                                                               
he said,  it's easier to  cancel an apprentice leaving  a program                                                               
and  re-register  the individual  using  a  new  ID number.    He                                                               
expressed  that he  understands  the reason  for  doing so,  even                                                               
though he  has "issues" with it.   Should an employer  lay off an                                                               
apprentice,  he  said,  which  is  common  in  construction,  the                                                               
apprentice   needs   to  find   a   new   sponsor;  if   everyone                                                               
communicates,   transition  could   happen   with  the   original                                                               
apprentice ID  number.   However, he said,  very few  people call                                                               
him when leaving  a program, so they end up  re-registered with a                                                               
new apprentice ID number.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
6:53:18 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR.  HAKALA continued  with  slide 15,  which  displayed a  chart                                                               
showing the registered apprentices grouped  by age.  Of the 1,931                                                               
total apprentices,  822 are between 16  and 24 years old,  with 2                                                               
16-year-olds,  3 17-year-olds,  and  78 18-year-olds.   He  said,                                                               
"For me, this  legislation, this House Bill,  is really important                                                               
because what  we're looking to  do is create the  environment for                                                               
new  program sponsors,  for youth,  to be  registered."   He said                                                               
that  the  current  stock  of   program  sponsors  are  primarily                                                               
programs who  accept apprentices aged  18 and over, and  if those                                                               
younger than 18 are accepted, it's only  one or two per year.  He                                                               
said that there is no  true youth apprenticeship system in Alaska                                                               
and  that  youths  are  not being  recruited  into  the  programs                                                               
currently  operating.   He  said,  "They  go  out and  maybe  try                                                               
college,  maybe  drop out  -  we  were talking  about  completion                                                               
rates, college  has a pretty high  dropout rate too, you  know? -                                                               
and so  they kick soda  cans for five  or six years  before maybe                                                               
they  cycle back  to  an apprenticeship  program."   He  stressed                                                               
that's the urgency of this proposed legislation.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
MR.   HAKALA  moved   to  slide   16,  "High   School  Registered                                                               
Apprenticeship," and noted that this  area is very important.  He                                                               
said  the  career and  technical  education  programs around  the                                                               
state,  which have  already been  invested in  and include  high-                                                               
quality training,  could become  program sponsors;  however, like                                                               
many nonprofits,  programs need  help making the  connection with                                                               
employers.    Slide  16 read  as  follows  [original  punctuation                                                               
provided]:                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
        • High School   (HS)   Registered   Apprenticeship                                                                      
          programs  combine work-based,  on-the-job learning                                                                    
          with   relevant   technical   education   in   the                                                                    
          classroom.                                                                                                            
        • Students who participate in these programs                                                                            
          graduate  with a  high  school  diploma, may  earn                                                                    
          college    credits,    and    national    industry                                                                    
          credentials.                                                                                                          
        • They also start on a career path that continues                                                                       
          after high  school graduation   whether that  is a                                                                    
          continuation  of  their registered  apprenticeship                                                                    
          along  with  college,   college  only,  registered                                                                    
          apprenticeship    only,    or   other    full-time                                                                    
          employment.                                                                                                           
        • HS Registered Apprenticeships benefit businesses                                                                      
          as  well by  providing  a fresh  source of  talent                                                                    
          developed from within their community.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
MR.   HAKALA  presented   slide  17,   "High  School   Registered                                                               
Apprenticeship," which included photos  of apprentices working in                                                               
different occupations,  as well  as a  quote from  Kayden Gilila,                                                               
the first  associate teacher  apprentice in  Akiak, Alaska.   The                                                               
quote  on  the  slide  read   as  follows  [original  punctuation                                                               
provided]:                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     "I want to become a  high school math teacher and teach                                                                    
     in my village. I want  to give my community someone who                                                                    
     will  be there  for the  kids and  actually care  about                                                                    
     their education.  I plan on  teaching in  the community                                                                    
     for a  long time. I want  to be fortunate enough  to be                                                                    
     remembered  as  the  teacher  who   cared  and  made  a                                                                    
     difference."                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
         -Kayden Gilila, Senior 2021, Associate Teacher                                                                         
     apprentice, Akiak School                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
6:58:47 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  FIELDS explained  to committee  members that  the Lower                                                               
Kuskokwim School  District helped  develop the  associate teacher                                                               
program, with  the participants using  the apprenticeship  to get                                                               
halfway to a bachelor's degree  in elementary education.  He said                                                               
that  other  school districts,  with  proper  support, could  put                                                               
similar programs in place.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
6:59:14 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR.   HAKALA   paraphrased   slide  18,   "Youth   Apprenticeship                                                               
Considerations,"  which  read  as follows  [original  punctuation                                                               
provided]:                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
        • Does the sponsor/employer hire apprentices who                                                                        
          are 16 -18 years of age as well as older                                                                              
          applicants?                                                                                                           
        • Is it a program who's sole purpose is to serve                                                                        
          youth?                                                                                                                
        • High Schools                                                                                                          
        • Youth organizations                                                                                                   
        • Community or Faith-based organizations                                                                                
        • Designing Youth Apprenticeships                                                                                       
        • Behavioral competencies                                                                                               
        • Flexibility to work/school schedule                                                                                   
        • Intermediary  responsibilities   post-graduation                                                                      
          (e.g., high schools)                                                                                                  
        • CTE credits for OJL and RTI                                                                                           
        • Employer requirements                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MR. HAKALA  proceeded to slide 19,  "Quality Pre-Apprenticeship,"                                                               
which read as follows [original punctuation provided]:                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
        • Quality pre-apprenticeship programs contribute to                                                                     
          the   development  of   a   diverse  and   skilled                                                                    
          workforce  by preparing  participants to  meet the                                                                    
          basic qualifications  for entry  into one  or more                                                                    
          Registered Apprenticeship programs.                                                                                   
        • Through a variety of unique designs and                                                                               
          approaches, pre-apprenticeship programs can be                                                                        
          adapted   to   meet   the   needs   of   differing                                                                    
          populations being  trained, the  various employers                                                                    
          and    sponsors   they    serve,   and    specific                                                                    
          opportunities within the local labor market.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
MR.  HAKALA  presented  slide 20,  "Quality  Pre-Apprenticeship,"                                                               
which read as follows [original punctuation provided]:                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
        • Pre-apprenticeship services and programs are                                                                          
          designed  to  prepare  individuals  to  enter  and                                                                    
          succeed   in    Registered   Apprenticeship   (RA)                                                                    
          programs.                                                                                                             
        • These programs have a documented partnership with                                                                     
          at  least  one Registered  Apprenticeship  program                                                                    
          sponsor    and   together,    they   expand    the                                                                    
          participant's  career  pathway opportunities  with                                                                    
          industry-based  training  coupled  with  classroom                                                                    
          instruction                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
MR. HAKALA  advanced to  slide 21,  "Quality Pre-Apprenticeship,"                                                               
which read as follows [original punctuation provided]:                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
        • Benefits for Participants:                                                                                            
        • Career exploration                                                                                                    
        • Qualify to meet minimum standards for selection                                                                       
          into RA programs                                                                                                      
        • Benefit from classroom and technology-based                                                                           
          training                                                                                                              
        • Get started on career-specific training and                                                                           
          career opportunities                                                                                                  
     • Develop literacy, math, and work readiness skills                                                                        
      • Advance into a Registered Apprenticeship Program                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
MR. HAKALA opined that career  exploration should begin in middle                                                               
school,  and  noted  that  child labor  laws  allow  youth,  with                                                               
parental  approval,  to  work  beginning  at age  14.    He  then                                                               
proceeded  to   slide  22,  "Alaska   Quality  Pre-Apprenticeship                                                               
Framework,"   which  read   as   follows  [original   punctuation                                                               
provided]:                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
        • Minimum Qualifications                                                                                                
        • Recruitment Strategy                                                                                                  
        • Hands-on Training and Integrated Curriculum                                                                           
        • Industry Certifications                                                                                               
        • Supportive Services                                                                                                   
        • Registered Apprenticeship Placement                                                                                   
        • Partnerships and Collaborations                                                                                       
        • Recognized by DOL&WD Division of Employment &                                                                         
          Training Services                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MR.  HAKALA  discussed  the  importance   of  a  structured  pre-                                                               
apprenticeship framework  and expressed  that the USDOL  has been                                                               
working  to  develop  the  apprenticeship in  Alaska.    He  then                                                               
progressed to slide 23, "Resources,"  displaying links to various                                                               
resources,   which   read   as  follows   [original   punctuation                                                               
provided]:                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     DOL Apprenticeship Website: www.apprenticeship.gov                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
     Youth                                   Apprenticeship:                                                                    
     www.apprenticeship.gov/education/high-school-and-                                                                        
     middle-school                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     Resource Hub: www.apprenticeship.gov/resource-hub                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
     Investments:    www.apprenticeship.gov/investments-tax-                                                                  
     credits-and-tuition-support                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
     Alaska  Department of  Labor  & Workforce  Development:                                                                    
     www.jobs.state.ak.us/apprentice/index.html                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     John    P.     Hakala,    Alaska     State    Director,                                                                    
     hakala.john@dol.gov                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
7:07:49 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR.  HAKALA concluded  his presentation  with slide  24, "Funding                                                               
Announcement," and commented  that each administration approaches                                                               
apprenticeship programs  differently.   Slide 24 read  as follows                                                               
[original punctuation provided]:                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     Funding   Opportunity   Number:  FOA-ETA-21-07;   $87.5                                                                  
     million                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                              
     Posted  Date:  March  17,  2021   |  Closing  Date  for                                                                  
     Applications: April 26, 2021                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
     The purpose  of the State Apprenticeship  Expansion and                                                                    
     Innovation  (SAEI)  grant  program is  to  support  the                                                                    
     development  of  new,  or the  expansion  of  existing,                                                                    
     Registered    Apprenticeship   Programs    (RAPs),   as                                                                    
     described  in 29  CFR Part  29 (Subpart  A) and  29 CFR                                                                    
     Part 30. This  also includes quality pre-apprenticeship                                                                    
     programs  that  directly  lead  to  grant  funded  RAPs                                                                    
     during  the  grant  period  of  performance.  The  SAEI                                                                    
     grants  will support  states to  achieve the  following                                                                    
     goals:                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     1)  Apprenticeship  system  expansion  to  support  the                                                                    
     development,  modernization,   and  diversification  of                                                                    
     RAPs;                                                                                                                      
     2)  Partnership   and  alignment   to  support   a  One                                                                    
     Workforce System vision;                                                                                                   
     3)  Increasing the  number of  apprentices enrolled  in                                                                    
     RAPs; and                                                                                                                  
     4)  Innovation in  apprenticeship expansion  efforts to                                                                    
     include    program    development    and    recruitment                                                                    
     strategies.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
7:09:11 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR FIELDS, directing his comments  to Ms. Riddle, said that                                                               
he's  of  the  understanding  that   there's  not  enough  school                                                               
district  staff   to  work  on  establishing   partnerships  with                                                               
employers for  new apprenticeship and  dual credit programs.   He                                                               
said  that he  would  like  to see  DOLWD  and  EED pursue  those                                                               
funding opportunities in partnership with the school districts.                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
7:10:10 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR SPOHNHOLZ  asked whether  the $87.5  million is  for the                                                               
entire country, or if there are multiple grants for that amount.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
MR. HAKALA  said that  it's the funding  for the  entire country,                                                               
but the minimum award would be  $2 million, which would be enough                                                               
to  fund the  initiatives as  described by  Co-Chair Fields.   He                                                               
said that "very  few" states have the job  training and workforce                                                               
initiatives as does Alaska.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
7:11:18 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE MCCARTY commented on empowering the workforce.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
7:12:12 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR.  HAKALA  mentioned that  the  University  of Alaska  utilized                                                               
funds  from the  Alaska  Technical  Vocational Education  Program                                                               
(TVEP) to  pay for an apprenticeship  coordinator, and University                                                               
of Alaska  Anchorage used those  funds to develop  the curriculum                                                               
for the aircraft maintenance technician  program, which was based                                                               
on the  premise of  making the  program available  for registered                                                               
apprentices.     He  said  that   HB  132  would  help   in  that                                                               
development.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
7:12:58 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE NELSON asked Mr. Hakala  to confirm that the state                                                               
has not received the $87.5 million grant described on slide 24.                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MR.  HAKALA confirmed  Representative Nelson's  understanding and                                                               
he said that the funding was announced five days earlier.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE   NELSON  expressed   concern   for  funding   the                                                               
apprenticeship programs, even with the grant money.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
7:14:13 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR FIELDS suggested moving  on the proposed legislation and                                                               
subsequently parsing the question of funding.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
7:14:29 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SCHRAGE  moved to  adopt the  committee substitute                                                               
(CS)  for HB  132, Version  32-LS0476\G, Klein,  3/19/21, as  the                                                               
working document.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
7:14:44 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE NELSON objected for purposes of discussion.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
7:14:49 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR FIELDS explained that the  CS removed HB 108, which will                                                               
be considered  separately.  Also  in the  CS, he said,  were some                                                               
technical changes recommended by Mr.  Hakala, as well as language                                                               
ensuring that the proposed tax credit would work for nonprofits.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
7:15:35 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
The committee took a brief at-ease.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
7:15:38 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
A roll call  vote was taken.   Representatives Snyder, Spohnholz,                                                               
Fields, Schrage,  and McCarty voted  in favor of adopting  the CS                                                               
for  HB  132,  Version  32-LS0476\G,  as  the  working  document.                                                               
Representative Nelson voted against it.   Therefore, by a vote of                                                               
5-1, the CS for HB 132 ("Version G") was before the House Labor                                                                 
and Commerce Standing Committee as the working document.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
7:17:13 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SCHRAGE moved to adopt Amendment 1, labeled 32-                                                                  
LS0476\G.1, Klein, 3/22/21, which read as follows:                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
     Page 5, line 27:                                                                                                           
          Delete "$1,000"                                                                                                       
          Insert "(1)  $1,000 for an apprentice who is not                                                                      
     a veteran;                                                                                                                 
               (2)  $1,500 for an apprentice who is a                                                                           
     veteran"                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
     Page 6, following line 4:                                                                                                  
     Insert a new subsection to read:                                                                                           
          "(f)  In this section, "veteran" means an                                                                             
      individual who was honorably discharged from service                                                                      
     in the                                                                                                                     
               (1)  armed forces of the United States,                                                                          
      including a reserve unit of the armed forces of the                                                                       
     United States; or                                                                                                          
               (2)  Alaska Territorial Guard, the Alaska                                                                        
     Army National Guard, the Alaska Air National Guard, or                                                                     
     the Alaska Naval Militia."                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
7:17:11 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR FIELDS objected for purposes of discussion.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
7:17:14 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SCHRAGE explained that Amendment 1 would increase                                                                
the tax credit to $1,500 for veterans and provides for a                                                                        
definition of "veteran."                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
7:17:41 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE NELSON  noted that veterans already  have parts of                                                               
training  paid for,  and sections  of the  Government Issue  (GI)                                                               
Bill  fund training  also.   He  asked whether  the incentive  is                                                               
really needed.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
7:18:05 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  SCHRAGE  explained that  tax  credit  is for  the                                                               
employers,  not the  apprentice,  and that  it would  incentivize                                                               
businesses to hire veterans.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
7:18:28 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  SPOHNHOLZ  expressed her  support  of  Amendment 1  and                                                               
noted Alaska's longstanding support of veterans.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
7:19:09 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  MCCARTY voiced  his approval  of Amendment  1 but                                                               
asked whether there are already tax credit incentives.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR FIELDS answered  that Alaska does not  currently have an                                                               
apprenticeship  tax credit.   He  said that  Amendment 1  mirrors                                                               
some policy  in place  in Montana.   He  also clarified  that the                                                               
amendment would be incentivizing the employer to hire veterans.                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE MCCARTY  asked, "If  there's already  money that's                                                               
going to  employers for the  payroll of veterans, that's  kind of                                                               
like  a credit  in itself."   He  mentioned "other  Alaskans that                                                               
don't have  such a privilege"  and asked whether there  exists an                                                               
"overappreciation"  of  veterans which  serves  to  focus on  job                                                               
creation for veterans as opposed to the non-veteran population.                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
7:20:47 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE NELSON commented that  there already exist federal                                                               
regulations that limit  training to "75 or 85 percent  of a class                                                               
has to  be limited to  just veterans."   He expressed  that there                                                               
could be apprenticeship classes full of veterans.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
7:21:43 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SNYDER  noted for the  record that she is  the co-                                                               
sponsor of  the amendment.  She  commented on the need  to ensure                                                               
that veterans,  being overrepresented in terms  of being eligible                                                               
for other  benefits, are not having  their needs "over-addressed"                                                               
compared to  other groups.   She said  that in  previous hearings                                                               
the  committee  has  heard  testimony  about  the  importance  of                                                               
gainful  employment  for  veterans.     She  described  a  family                                                               
member's struggle with PTSD upon  return from deployment and said                                                               
that  she wished  a program  such as  this was  available at  the                                                               
time.   She said,  "Everything that  we can do  to add  to making                                                               
sure we have a smooth experience  for our veterans coming back, I                                                               
think we should take that opportunity."                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
7:23:16 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR FIELDS withdrew his objection.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
7:23:26 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE NELSON objected.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
7:23:33 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  SCHRAGE  expressed   approval  of  Representative                                                               
Snyder's  comments  and  said  that   there  is  a  "substantial,                                                               
demonstrated"  need for  opportunities for  veterans.   He stated                                                               
that Alaska has  a large military presence as well  as a shortage                                                               
of  skilled workers.    He  said that  with  the future  funding,                                                               
including  the federal  infrastructure package,  this "could  not                                                               
come at a better time."                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
7:24:19 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE NELSON  explained that he supports  the concept of                                                               
Amendment  1 and  noted  that  he is  the  only actively  serving                                                               
military member on the committee.   He stated his belief that the                                                               
proposed legislation focuses too  narrowly on apprenticeships and                                                               
should  also  include  internship,  externships,  and  on-the-job                                                               
training.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
7:24:56 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
A roll  call vote was  taken.  Representatives  McCarty, Schrage,                                                               
Snyder, Spohnholz, Nelson, and Fields  voted in favor of adopting                                                               
Amendment 1.  No one voted against  it.    Therefore, Amendment 1                                                               
was adopted by a vote of 6-0.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
7:25:47 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR FIELDS opened public testimony  on CSHB 132(L&C).  After                                                               
ascertaining  that there  was no  one who  wished to  testify, he                                                               
closed public testimony.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
7:26:04 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  SCHRAGE moved  to report  CSHB 132(L&C),  Version                                                               
32-LS0476\G, Klein,  3/19/21, as  amended, out of  committee with                                                               
individual recommendations and the accompanying fiscal notes.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
7:26:20 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE NELSON objected.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
7:26:26 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE NELSON  said that he  supports the concept  of the                                                               
proposed legislation but believes there  has not been enough time                                                               
in committee for  it to be properly vetted.   He characterized HB
132 as a  "very in-depth, comprehensive bill" and  stated that he                                                               
does not  believe in  a "one-prong  approach" to  adequately meet                                                               
the needs of  the state's students and workforce.   He stated his                                                               
desire  to  see  a  broader  array  of  educational  options  and                                                               
expressed concern  with the tax  credit being applicable  only to                                                               
the business who hire apprentices.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
7:27:43 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR   FIELDS  commented   that   the   committee  would   be                                                               
considering  HB  108, which  would  take  a broader  approach  in                                                               
dealing with workforce development programs for youth.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
7:27:58 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE MCCARTY  opined that this is  "a great discussion"                                                               
with no easy solution.  He  said that considering both HB 132 and                                                               
HB 108 would strengthen youth workforce training.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
7:28:41 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
A roll  call vote  was taken.   Representatives  McCarty, Snyder,                                                               
Fields, Spohnholz,  and Schrage voted  in favor of the  motion to                                                               
report  CSHB   132,  Version  32-LS0476\G,  Klein,   3/19/21,  as                                                               
amended,  out of  committee with  individual recommendations  and                                                               
the  accompanying  fiscal  notes.   Representative  Nelson  voted                                                               
against it.  Therefore, CSHB  132(L&C), was amended, was reported                                                               
out of the House Labor and  Commerce Standing Committee by a vote                                                               
of 5-1.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
^CONFIRMATION HEARING(S)                                                                                                        
                    CONFIRMATION HEARING(S)                                                                                 
^Alaska Labor Relations Agency                                                                                                  
                 Alaska Labor Relations Agency                                                                              
^State  Board of  Registration for  Architects,  Engineer &  Land                                                               
Surveyors                                                                                                                       
  State Board of Registration for Architects, Engineer & Land                                                               
                           Surveyors                                                                                        
^Workers' Compensation Appeals Commission                                                                                       
            Workers' Compensation Appeals Commission                                                                        
^State Board of Physical Therapy & Occupation Therapy                                                                           
      State Board of Physical Therapy & Occupation Therapy                                                                  
                                                                                                                              
7:29:21 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR FIELDS announced that the  final order of business would                                                               
be confirmation hearings for governor's  appointees to the Alaska                                                               
Labor  Relations  Agency, the  State  Board  of Registration  for                                                               
Architects, Engineer & Land  Surveyors, the Workers' Compensation                                                               
Appeals Commission,  and the  State Board  of Physical  Therapy &                                                               
Occupation Therapy.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  FIELDS  announced  that  the  House  Labor  &  Commerce                                                               
Committee  had  reviewed  the qualifications  of  the  Governor's                                                               
appointees  and recommended  that  the names  be  forwarded to  a                                                               
joint session  for consideration:   Tyler Andrews for  the Alaska                                                               
Labor Relations  Agency; Fred Wallis, Robert  "Bob" Bell, Jeffrey                                                               
Garness, Loren Leman, Edward Leonetti,  and Randall Rozie for the                                                               
State  Board of  Registration  for Architects,  Engineers &  Land                                                               
Surveyors;  Deidre   Ford  and   Amy  Steele  for   the  Workers'                                                               
Compensation Appeals  Commission; and Lisa Radley,  Rebecca Dean,                                                               
and  Jodi Pfieffer  for the  State  Board of  Physical Therapy  &                                                               
Occupation Therapy.   He said that signing  the reports regarding                                                               
appointments  to boards  and commissions  in no  way reflects  an                                                               
individual member's  approval or  disapproval of  the appointees,                                                               
and the nominations are merely  forwarded to the full legislature                                                               
for confirmation or rejection.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
7:30:28 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
ADJOURNMENT                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
There being no  further business before the  committee, the House                                                               
Labor and  Commerce Standing Committee  meeting was  adjourned at                                                               
7:30 p.m.                                                                                                                       

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
HB 117 Additional Document 3.19.21.pdf HL&C 3/22/2021 3:15:00 PM
SFIN 5/14/2021 1:00:00 PM
HB 117
HB 117 Sponsor Statement version A.pdf HL&C 3/22/2021 3:15:00 PM
HB 117
HB 117 v. A.PDF HL&C 3/22/2021 3:15:00 PM
HB 117
HB 117 Sunset Review DLA 6.19.2020.pdf HL&C 3/22/2021 3:15:00 PM
SFIN 5/14/2021 1:00:00 PM
HB 117
HB 117 Fiscal Note DCCED 3.22.21.pdf HL&C 3/22/2021 3:15:00 PM
HB 117
HB 132 Work Draft Committee Substitute v. G 3.19.21.pdf HL&C 3/22/2021 3:15:00 PM
HB 132
HB 132 Amendment #1 3.22.21.pdf HL&C 3/22/2021 3:15:00 PM
HB 132
HB 132 Letter of Support - Ironworkers Business Manager 3.19.21.pdf HL&C 3/22/2021 3:15:00 PM
HB 132
HB 132 Letter of Support - Ironworkers Apprenticehsip Training Coordinator 3.19.21.pdf HL&C 3/22/2021 3:15:00 PM
HB 132
HB 132 Letter of Support - PNRCC 3.22.21.pdf HL&C 3/22/2021 3:15:00 PM
HB 132
HB 132 Letter of Support - ASPTA 3.22.21.pdf HL&C 3/22/2021 3:15:00 PM
HB 132