Legislature(2015 - 2016)ANCH BENSON BLDG

12/20/2016 01:30 PM LEGISLATIVE COUNCIL

Note: the audio and video recordings are distinct records and are obtained from different sources. As such there may be key differences between the two. The audio recordings are captured by our records offices as the official record of the meeting and will have more accurate timestamps. Use the icons to switch between them.

Download Mp3. <- Right click and save file as
Download Video part 1. <- Right click and save file as

Audio Topic
01:33:08 PM Start
05:25:47 PM Adjourn
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
+ Location: Large Conference Room TELECONFERENCED
Information Technology Changes
- Name Change
- Facebook
Moving & Travel Policy Changes
Allowance Policy Change
Contract Approvals
- Westlaw Contract
- Stoel Rives Contract
Other Committee Business - Executive Session
- Furlough Policy
- Capital Security
- Benson Building Update
                       ALASKA STATE LEGISLATURE                                                                               
                         LEGISLATIVE COUNCIL                                                                                  
                          DECEMBER 20, 2016                                                                                   
                               1:33 PM                                                                                        
                                                                                                                              
       MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
       Senator Gary Stevens, Chair                                                                                              
       Representative Bob Herron, Vice Chair                                                                                    
       Senator Lyman Hoffman                                                                                                    
       Senator Kevin Meyer                                                                                                      
       Representative Craig Johnson                                                                                             
       Representative Sam Kito                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
       MEMBERS ON TELECONFERENCE                                                                                              
                                                                                                                              
       Senator John Coghill                                                                                                     
       Senator Anna MacKinnon                                                                                                   
       Senator Peter Micciche                                                                                                   
       Representative Mike Chenault                                                                                             
                                                                                                                              
       MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
       Senator Charlie Huggins                                                                                                  
       Senator Lesil McGuire, alternate                                                                                         
       Senator Cathy Giessel, alternate                                                                                         
       Representative Mike Hawker                                                                                               
       Representative Charisse Millett                                                                                          
       Representative Mark Neuman                                                                                               
       Representative Steve Thompson, alternate                                                                                 
       Representative Harriet Drummond, alternate                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
       OTHER MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
       Representatives David Guttenberg and Lora Reinbold                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
       AGENDA                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
       APPROVAL OF AGENDA                                                                                                       
       APPROVAL OF MINUTES                                                                                                      
       INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY CHANGES                                                                                           
       MOVING AND TRAVEL POLICY CHANGES                                                                                         
       ALLOWANCE POLICY CHANGE                                                                                                  
       CONTRACT APPROVALS                                                                                                       
       OTHER COMMITTEE BUSINESS                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
       (continued on next page)                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     SPEAKER REGISTER                                                                                                         
     Tim Banaszak, Information Technology Manager, Legislative                                                                  
        Affairs Agency                                                                                                          
     Jessica Geary, Finance Manager, Legislative Affairs Agency                                                                 
     Doug Gardner, Legal Services Director, Legislative Affairs                                                                 
        Agency                                                                                                                  
     Steve Daigle, Chief of Security, Legislative Affairs Agency                                                                
     Pam Varni, Executive Director, Legislative Affairs Agency                                                                  
       1:33:08 PM                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
   I. CHAIR GARY STEVENS called the Legislative Council meeting                                                               
       to  order  at  1:33  p.m.  in  the  Anchorage Legislative                                                                
       Information Office  Auditorium. Present at the  call were                                                                
       Senators Stevens, Hoffman, Meyer;  Representatives Herron,                                                               
       Johnson  and Kito.  Participating via teleconference were                                                                
       Senators Coghill, MacKinnon, Micciche; and  Representative                                                               
       Chenault. Absent were Senators Huggins, McGuire, alternate,                                                              
       and   Giessel,  alternate;  and  Representatives  Hawker,                                                                
       Millett,  Neuman,   Thompson,  alternate,  and  Drummond,                                                                
       alternate.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
       Chair Stevens began the meeting by noting that it was the                                                                
       last meeting with him as Chair of  Legislative Council. He                                                               
       thanked members for their service; specifically he thanked                                                               
       Representative Herron for his work as the vice chair, and                                                                
       Pam Varni and her wonderful staff who have been helpful and                                                              
       supportive throughout his tenure.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
  II. APPROVAL OF AGENDA                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                              
       1:35:20 PM                                                                                                             
       VICE CHAIR  HERRON moved that Legislative Council approve                                                                
       the agenda as proposed.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
       The agenda was approved without objection.                                                                               
                                                                                                                              
 III. APPROVAL OF MINUTES                                                                                                     
       a. September 1, 2016                                                                                                   
       b. November 1, 2016                                                                                                    
       c. November 21, 2016                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
       1:35:33 PM                                                                                                             
       VICE CHAIR  HERRON moved that Legislative Council approve                                                                
       the minutes of the September 1, 2016, November 1, 2016, and                                                              
       November 21, 2016 minutes as presented.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
       The minutes were approved without objection.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
  IV. INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY CHANGES                                                                                          
       a. Name Change                                                                                                         
       b. Facebook                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                              
       a. Name Change                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
       TIM BANASZAK, Information Technology Manager for the Alaska                                                              
       Legislature, said that "IT" is a household word that people                                                              
       are  familiar with. IT has  updated its  websites but for                                                                
     clarity purposes, some Legislative Council policies would                                                                  
     need to  be updated with the name change. The goal was to                                                                  
     provide clear communication and which,  in some cases, do                                                                  
     require action on  the part of Legislators or  legislative                                                                 
     staff. In order to facilitate that approach, IT was looking                                                                
     to  "brand" their communications. There were  some recent                                                                  
     SPAM  activities and  clear,  branded communications were                                                                  
     instrumental to ensure that Legislators and staff were made                                                                
     aware of those activities.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
     There was no  action required by Council and no objections                                                                 
     were made regarding the name change.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
     b. Facebook                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
     1:39:59 PM                                                                                                               
     VICE  CHAIR HERRON moved that Legislative Council approve                                                                  
     expanded access to Facebook for Legislator's partisan staff                                                                
     to  emulate  the access  that  is currently  provided for                                                                  
     Legislators and non-partisan Agency staff.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
     MR.  BANASZAK  stated  that Legislators  and  non-partisan                                                                 
     Agency staff currently have Facebook access. There is also                                                                 
     Facebook access on the  Legislature's wireless network. If                                                                 
     someone wants to get to Facebook, they can get to Facebook.                                                                
     Right now, partisan legislative staff are unable to access                                                                 
     Facebook from their legislative computers. The controls are                                                                
     in place to allow access and which could be easily granted                                                                 
     if  that  is the  decision. He  said that  by  definition,                                                                 
     Facebook is an open and connected platform which can enable                                                                
     direct   interactions   between   the   Legislature,  the                                                                  
     Legislators, and Alaska's citizens. It can also be a timely                                                                
     solution for  communication, and a  cost-effective way to                                                                  
     interact  with constituents  with what  was  originally a                                                                  
     social media  vehicle. He brought to members' attention a                                                                  
     survey that was conducted of governmental entities whereby                                                                 
     87% of respondents said that their governmental entity had                                                                 
     a  Facebook page; which sheds some  light on the business                                                                  
     value; 91%  of the respondents indicated that the primary                                                                  
     purpose  of Facebook  was to  keep citizens  informed. He                                                                  
     closed  his testimony by  saying that  as with  any other                                                                  
     vehicle of communication, when one is using Facebook it's                                                                  
     important to  make sure that what's being communicated is                                                                  
     true, it's necessary, and it's relevant. There is a Social                                                                 
     Media Guide  approved by Legislative Council to ensure an                                                                  
     informed   staff   does   not   inadvertently   put   out                                                                  
     communications they didn't intend to.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
       CHAIR STEVENS  confirmed with Mr. Banaszak that  the only                                                                
       folks in the Capitol who do not have access to Facebook are                                                              
       the partisan staff who work for the Legislators.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
       REPRESENTATIVE JOHNSON stated that he has been opposed to                                                                
       this since it was first brought up basically on the grounds                                                              
       of ethics. We have some of the strictest ethics laws in the                                                              
       nation; what one can do in some states in that survey would                                                              
       be an ethics violation in Alaska. If we proceed with this,                                                               
       he believed it was incumbent on this committee to make sure                                                              
       that it would be  part of the ethics training; and that a                                                                
       line of accountability be set up that if a partisan staff                                                                
       does something on Facebook that crosses that threshold of                                                                
       campaigning, for example, that lays out who is responsible.                                                              
       He said  this was opening up Pandora's Box and opening up                                                                
       the Legislature to more and more ethics complaints. He said                                                              
       we are also  going to need to start looking at the ethics                                                                
       laws to address this issue; it is  not a simple yes or no                                                                
       solution to the problem. He also asked about other social                                                                
       media outlets being allowed. He encouraged a lot of caution                                                              
       in proceeding with this issue.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
       REPRESENTATIVE KITO  said  that it  was  timely from  his                                                                
       perspective in that he and  his staff have been sharing a                                                                
       laptop computer and every time someone else logs into the                                                                
       laptop, he loses Facebook access and we  have to call IT.                                                                
       This was solved by disconnecting the laptop and using Wi-Fi                                                              
       instead. He  said his office  uses it for  communications.                                                               
       While it is important to understand ethical considerations,                                                              
       they do that every day with  communication and Facebook is                                                               
       another communication tool just as a telephone is. Just as                                                               
       someone on  Facebook might inadvertently do some campaign                                                                
       activity, they might  do the same on  the telephone; with                                                                
       Facebook, it's actually recorded and there is evidence with                                                              
       which to  identify and conduct an investigation much more                                                                
       easily than telephone communication.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
       MR.  BANASZAK, in  response  to the  Chair's  request for                                                                
       additional information on  ethical concerns  and limiting                                                                
       this action  to Facebook, said that there  are already so                                                                
       many ways to get access to Facebook and other social media                                                               
       options. He said that this issue isn't limited to Facebook                                                               
       but really involves all social media. Users and staff have                                                               
       been  trained in  using these  vehicles of  communication.                                                               
       Whether Facebook is blocked for this group, it's possible                                                                
       to access Facebook in other ways. Perhaps one approach is                                                                
       to  use the existing Social  Media Policy to open  up all                                                                
       social media options in order to manage appropriately. In                                                                
     response to a follow-up question by the Chair, Mr. Banaszak                                                                
     confirmed this particular motion deals only with Facebook.                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
     1:53:21 PM                                                                                                               
     SENATE  PRESIDENT MEYER, after a  brief discussion, moved                                                                  
     that the original motion be amended to include all social                                                                  
     media (not just Facebook).                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
     SENATOR MACKINNON said that there are probably some sites                                                                  
     to which we aren't going to want to allow access from state                                                                
     computers.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
     MR.  BANASZAK responded that IT has  intentionally blocked                                                                 
     certain  nefarious and/or  inappropriate sites, and  that                                                                  
     wouldn't change by allowing access to certain social media                                                                 
     options. As new venues for communication become available,                                                                 
     IT  would take a cautious approach to allowing access. He                                                                  
     said they  would be very specific to say which sites were                                                                  
     legitimate and which were  not; for example, Twitter is a                                                                  
     legitimate way  to keep the  public informed. This motion                                                                  
     would not  allow a wide-open gateway to just anything. In                                                                  
     response to  a follow-up question, Mr. Banaszak said that                                                                  
     there  would be technical controls  in place so  that one                                                                  
     could not get to nefarious sites. In addition, there would                                                                 
     be administrative controls that could act as guidelines to                                                                 
     social media.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
     SENATOR MACKINNON asked if a definition of social media had                                                                
     been  adopted so everyone had the same understanding. She                                                                  
     said she would speak in opposition to the current amendment                                                                
     as  proposed if there wasn't a caveat that whatever those                                                                  
     mechanisms are, IT will judiciously go through and look at                                                                 
     the  site and  make sure  that the  general public, under                                                                  
     general acceptable  norms, communicate through that site,                                                                  
     and  then come back  to Council, as  happens with certain                                                                  
     events, to approve and review recommended sites. She added                                                                 
     that  she was  also  concerned that Council  was possibly                                                                  
     showing a preference for Facebook, a for-profit company, in                                                                
     limiting  the Legislature's use  over other  social media                                                                  
     sites, which she didn't think  was fair. In response to a                                                                  
     request for  clarification, she said she supported a more                                                                  
     expansive approach, but not  "all" - she was  more apt to                                                                  
     support  those that the  general public is  more familiar                                                                  
     with.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     SENATOR MICCICHE said it might help if Mr. Banaszak could                                                                  
     clarify how some of the filters work. Simply opening access                                                                
     to social media platforms doesn't mean one can click on any                                                                
     file to open.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
       MR. BANASZAK said that the way IT monitors access to social                                                              
       media, those types of platforms are actually categories of                                                               
       service. IT can allow a  category of communication service                                                               
       in technical controls and can go further to allow Facebook                                                               
       but,  by default, continue to  block a  site like Tumblr.                                                                
       Twitter may  be permitted and  that would be  a technical                                                                
       control to allow access. Malicious sites that nefariously                                                                
       try to  collect user information, or a pornographic sites                                                                
       are  all  continuously blocked by  filters  and monitors.                                                                
       Maintaining security is their top priority.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
       REPRESENTATIVE  HERRON  suggested  an  amendment  to  the                                                                
       amendment to change "social media" to "limited social media                                                              
       spectrum." This will make it  clear that there are limits                                                                
       and  that  it will  be  IT  that determines  the spectrum                                                                
       available to  users. Mr. Banaszak agreed that was  a good                                                                
       recommendation and language IT can work with.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
       MR. BANASZAK, in response to a  question by Representative                                                               
       Johnson about protecting Facebook accounts, said  that IT                                                                
       and the Legislature do not have the ability to control or                                                                
       manage Facebook accounts.  It is up to the user to employ                                                                
       best practices, such as frequently changing passwords and                                                                
       reporting any  untoward activity to  Facebook. Creating a                                                                
       Facebook page is done independently of the IT systems; they                                                              
       can monitor activity and  report suspicions, but not much                                                                
       beyond  that. In  response to  a follow-up  question, Mr.                                                                
       Banaszak noted that  legislative staff are able to access                                                                
       Facebook through  Wi-Fi, although they are  not currently                                                                
       able to  access Facebook through their work computer. Mr.                                                                
       Banaszak said that IT is able to have greater control with                                                               
       the wired network.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
       SENATOR  COGHILL   said  that   Legislative  Council  has                                                                
       specifically prohibited partisan staff from using Facebook,                                                              
    so the term "Facebook" should be kept in the motion.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
       SENATE  PRESIDENT  MEYER  accepted  Vice  Chair  Herron's                                                                
       friendly  amendment to  the  amendment  to use  the  term                                                                
       "limited social media spectrum" so a vote isn't necessary.                                                               
                                                                                                                                
       DISCUSSION FOLLOWED refining the amended motion language.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
       MS. VARNI  stated the amended motion as  follows: "I move                                                                
       that  Legislative  Council  approve  expanded  access  to                                                                
       Facebook and limited social media for Legislator's partisan                                                              
       staff to emulate the access that is currently provided for                                                               
       Legislators and non-partisan Agency staff.                                                                               
     A roll call vote was taken.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     YEAS:   Meyer,  Coghill,  Hoffman,  MacKinnon,  Micciche,                                                                  
             Chenault, Kito, Herron, Stevens                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
     NAYS: Johnson                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
     The amended motion passed 9-1.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
 V. MOVING AND TRAVEL POLICY CHANGES                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
     2:11:45 PM                                                                                                               
     VICE  CHAIR HERRON moved that Legislative Council approve                                                                  
     the  changes to  the Legislative Council Moving  & Travel                                                                  
     Policy as per the attached draft.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
     JESSICA  GEARY, Finance  Manager for  Legislative Affairs                                                                  
     Agency,  testified  that  members  had  before  them  for                                                                  
     consideration three  proposed changes to  the  Moving and                                                                  
     Travel  Policy.  The first  two  changes  dealt with  the                                                                  
     transportation of Legislators' vehicles from their home to                                                                 
     Juneau  for the  duration of session.  The current policy                                                                  
     allowed for Legislators to bring two vehicles; the proposed                                                                
     change would limit that to one vehicle. The second change                                                                  
     deals  with  payment  of  the  shipping of  vehicles  for                                                                  
     Legislators that  live  off the  road and  marine highway                                                                  
     systems. The  current policy allowed for a  vehicle to be                                                                  
     either air-freighted or barged to a location that connects                                                                 
     with a state road or ferry system; as a way to realize cost                                                                
     savings,  this proposal allows for  the possibility of  a                                                                  
     rental  car for the  duration of  session if it  was less                                                                  
     expensive than shipping a vehicle from a location off the                                                                  
     road  or marine highway system.  This policy change would                                                                  
     require a Legislator to demonstrate that it would be less                                                                  
     expensive to ship a vehicle to Juneau than to rent a car in                                                                
     Juneau for the duration of the session.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
     Ms. Geary said the last change to the policy dealt with the                                                                
     types of items a Legislator is currently allowed to ship to                                                                
     Juneau  as  part of  their  household goods  and personal                                                                  
     effects. The policy language includes the word "appliances"                                                                
     as  allowed in the shipment of  household goods. The term                                                                  
     "appliances" isn't very definitive and could allow for the                                                                 
     shipment  of  major appliances such  as  washers, dryers,                                                                  
     refrigerators, etc.;  this proposed  change clarifies the                                                                  
     intent of that language which is to allow small appliances                                                                 
     such  as  toasters, blenders,  etc. Ms.  Geary  ended her                                                                  
     testimony by noting that in  the proposed policy language,                                                                 
     they tried to catch all the references from two vehicles to                                                                
       one vehicle; they missed at  least one and if Legislative                                                                
       Council chose to adopt these changes, they would make sure                                                               
       to fix all references.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
       NOTE:  Senator  Hoffman  asked a  question,  but  it  was                                                                
       inaudible.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
       DISCUSSION FOLLOWED regarding household goods that may be                                                                
       packed inside the  vehicle being shipped, as well  as the                                                                
       definition of  small appliance and what  is allowed as  a                                                                
       household good and  what is allowed as  a legitimate item                                                                
       necessary for conducting legislative business.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
       SENATOR HOFFMAN was concerned that any proposed change not                                                               
       discriminate against Legislators who live in rural Alaska                                                                
       simply because the moving costs are higher. He said while                                                                
       we need  to be conscious of the State's budget, it should                                                                
       not be required that rural Legislators have to go through                                                                
       mathematical gyrations to justify their move to Juneau.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
       DISCUSSION FOLLOWED regarding whether one car is enough for                                                              
       a  Legislator with a large family; whether special and/or                                                                
       extended sessions were  included in the  calculation of a                                                                
       rental car versus shipping a vehicle; the general cost of                                                                
       shipping a vehicle via air freight or barge; which type of                                                               
       vehicle  would  be   allowed  as  a  rental;  legislative                                                                
       purchasing and running of a "zip car" type of system where                                                               
       Legislators share vehicles as needed in Juneau.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
       SENATOR MICCICHE believed that it was the appropriate time                                                               
       to review policies given the fiscal situation of the State,                                                              
       and that the proposed policy gives enough leeway for those                                                               
       who have a  more difficult time getting their families and                                                               
       goods to Juneau.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
       CHAIR STEVENS re-stated the motion that Legislative Council                                                              
       approve the  changes to the  Legislative Council Moving &                                                                
       Travel  Policy as  per  the  attached draft.  He reminded                                                                
       members that  the changes  were (1)  allowing one vehicle                                                                
       instead of two to be brought to Juneau for session at State                                                              
       expense; (2)  shipping vehicles off the road/ferry system                                                                
       versus renting a  vehicle in Juneau for  session; and (3)                                                                
       clarifying allowed household goods to be small appliances                                                                
       only.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
       2:34:30 PM                                                                                                             
       A roll call vote was taken.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
     YEAS:   Meyer,  Coghill,  Hoffman,  MacKinnon,  Micciche,                                                                  
             Chenault, Johnson, Kito, Herron, Stevens                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
     NAYS: None                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
     The motion passed 10-0.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
VI. ALLOWANCE POLICY CHANGES                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
     2:35:06 PM                                                                                                               
     VICE  CHAIR HERRON moved that Legislative Council approve                                                                  
     the  change to the Legislative Council policy as  per the                                                                  
     attached draft.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     CHAIR STEVENS objected for purposes of discussion and asked                                                                
     Finance Manager Jessica Geary to brief Council.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     MS. GEARY  said this was a simple change to the Allowance                                                                  
     Account Policy.  In the  FY 17 budget  process, the House                                                                  
     allowance accounts were  cut by  25%, which reduced House                                                                  
     member's  accounts from  $16,000 to  $12,000.  The policy                                                                  
  language needs to be updated to reflect that reduction.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
     DISCUSSION FOLLOWED between Representatives Kito, Johnson,                                                                 
     and  Herron, and Chair Stevens and Senate President Meyer                                                                  
     regarding the  fact that the Senate  did not reduce their                                                                  
     allowance account; that a Senator's district is twice the                                                                  
     size  of a  Representative's district, so newsletters and                                                                  
     travel  are more expensive;  perhaps House members should                                                                  
     have half  the amount of Senate members; and that the cut                                                                  
     was  a decision  by the  House Majority, not  the Finance                                                                  
     Committees. Further, it  was noted  that a few  years ago                                                                  
     Legislative Council approved by  a vote of  8-6 to double                                                                  
     allowance account amounts, which truly was a policy call at                                                                
     the time, and all six votes against that motion were House                                                                 
     members.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
     Senator  Hoffman left  the  meeting before  the roll  was                                                                  
     called.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
     A roll call vote was taken.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     YEAS:   Meyer,  Coghill,  MacKinnon,  Micciche, Chenault,                                                                  
             Johnson, Kito, Herron, Stevens                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     NAYS: None                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
     The motion passed 9-0.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
 VII. CONTRACT APPROVALS                                                                                                      
       a. Westlaw Contract                                                                                                    
       b. Stoel Rives Contract                                                                                                
                                                                                                                              
       a. Westlaw Contract                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
       DOUG GARDNER, Director of Legal Services, said that he had                                                               
       Joe Keikkala of his staff put together a proposal to reduce                                                              
       the  contract costs  going  forward. The  Legislature has                                                                
       passwords  from  LexisNexis  and  passwords from  Westlaw                                                                
       allowing for legal research; the systems are very similar.                                                               
       We  have some unique  libraries that are included  in the                                                                
       Westlaw contract, and he thought it would be wise for the                                                                
       Legislature to maintain both accounts. The Lexis accounts                                                                
       aren't necessarily free, but are included in the existing                                                                
       contract along with other services. He said it was possible                                                              
       to  reduce the  contract costs  without affecting service                                                                
       overall by reducing the number of online research accounts                                                               
       from 40 to  30; the savings would be approximately $23,500                                                               
       for  a three year  contract, and $60,000 for a  five year                                                                
       contract.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
       The  Chair  interrupted  to  ask   for  a  motion  before                                                                
       continuing.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
       2:44:10 PM                                                                                                             
       VICE CHAIR HERRON moved that Legislative Council enter into                                                              
       a  5-year contract with West Publishing in  the amount of                                                                
       $215,869.20.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
       The Chair objected for purposes of discussion.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
       MR. GARDNER, in response to a question by the Chair, stated                                                              
       that both Lexis and  Westlaw are computer search platforms                                                               
       provided  by the  publishers of  a vast  number of  legal                                                                
       publications in  the country. Lexis  publishes the Alaska                                                                
       statutes, West Publishing heads Westlaw and publishes other                                                              
       states' statutes. By having both search engines, we cover                                                                
       all 50  states, as well as  many other reporters, such as                                                                
       briefs  from  trial  courts  that can  be  important  for                                                                
       representing the Legislature on  cutting edge issues. The                                                                
       amount of  resources that the Legislature puts into staff                                                                
       time  and  resources,  in  Legal  Services,  in  Research                                                                
       Services, and in  the legislative library, who often help                                                                
       the public with various requests, all benefit from having                                                                
       access to  Westlaw and  Lexis. He said  it's a  very cost                                                                
       effective tool; part of  the trade off to re-focusing the                                                                
       library on Legislator needs is that there was a commitment                                                               
       to ensuring access to online resources. The library saved a                                                              
     lot of money by reducing their hard copy subscriptions and                                                                 
     part  of the trade-off was to  ensure continued access to                                                                  
     resources electronically. This contract does that and for                                                                  
     additional cost savings as well.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
     CHAIR STEVENS summarized the motion and discussion of the                                                                  
     Westlaw contract for any Council members who may have been                                                                 
     momentarily dropped from teleconference.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
     DISCUSSION  FOLLOWED between  Representatives Johnson and                                                                  
     Kito,  and   Mr.  Gardner  regarding  the  contract  with                                                                  
     LexisNexis  for   publishing  hard   copy  statutes;  the                                                                  
     possibility  of  moving away  from  printed  statutes and                                                                  
     getting   more  online   passwords  in   future  contract                                                                  
     negotiations; how the  Legislature may be subsidizing the                                                                  
     cost of Alaska statutes in hard copy for other entities who                                                                
     might not otherwise be able to afford them; other state's                                                                  
     that have their statutes online only; and whether there was                                                                
     enough  usage  to  justify the  passwords  for which  the                                                                  
     Legislature pays.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
     A roll call vote was taken.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     YEAS:   Meyer,  Coghill,  MacKinnon,  Micciche, Chenault,                                                                  
             Johnson, Kito, Herron, Stevens                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     NAYS: None                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
     The motion passed 9-0.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     b. Stoel Rives Contract                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
     2:57:30 PM                                                                                                               
     VICE CHAIR HERRON moved that Legislative Council approve an                                                                
     amendment to the legal services contract with Stoel Rives                                                                  
     LLP,  in the  amount of  $150,000 to  pay for  past legal                                                                  
     services and to address the  current procurement claim and                                                                 
     any  further proceedings regarding the lease of 716 W 4th                                                                  
     Avenue.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
     MR.  GARDNER said that  the Legislature owed  Stoel Rives                                                                  
     about $100,000 and the matter, in his professional opinion,                                                                
     is not over yet. Without getting into too much detail in a                                                                 
     public session, he said 716 W Fourth Avenue LLC, has until                                                                 
     tomorrow to file an appeal and, in the event that they do,                                                                 
     he  wanted the ability to be  able to pay  Stoel Rives to                                                                  
     represent   the  Legislature   until  the   new  incoming                                                                  
     Legislative   Council  is   established  with   the  30th                                                                  
       Legislature and this issue  can be further addressed. The                                                                
       amendment before Council will bring the Legislature current                                                              
       with Stoel Rives and make available funds for work that may                                                              
       come up in this transition period. If there was no appeal,                                                               
       no additional funds would be spent.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
       CHAIR STEVENS said that Stoel Rives have been tremendous to                                                              
       work  with and  have  done a  nice job  in  assisting the                                                                
       Legislature through a tedious process.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
       A roll call vote was taken.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
       YEAS:   Meyer,  Coghill,  MacKinnon, Micciche,  Chenault,                                                                
               Johnson, Kito, Herron, Stevens                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
       NAYS: None                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
       The motion passed 9-0.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
VIII. OTHER COMMITTEE BUSINESS - EXECUTIVE SESSION                                                                            
       a. Furlough Policy                                                                                                     
       b. Capitol Security                                                                                                    
       c. Benson Building Update (no action needed on this item)                                                              
                                                                                                                              
       3:00:07 PM                                                                                                             
       VICE CHAIR  HERRON moved that Legislative Council go into                                                                
       Executive Session under Uniform Rule 22(B)(1), discussion                                                                
       of  matters,  the  immediate  knowledge  of  which  would                                                                
       adversely affect  the finances of  a government  unit and                                                                
       22(B)(3), discussion of  a  matter that may,  by  law, be                                                                
       required to be  confidential. He asked that the following                                                                
       individuals remain in the room: Pam Varni, Katrina Matheny,                                                              
       Brian  Messiner,  Elisha  Martin,  Tanci  Mintz  and  any                                                                
       legislative staff working for Council members or manager of                                                              
       the Legislature's support agencies to remain in the room or                                                              
       online. We  also welcome  any Legislator that  is not  on                                                                
       Council to remain in the room or online.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
       A roll call vote was taken.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
       YEAS:   Meyer,  Coghill,  MacKinnon, Micciche,  Chenault,                                                                
               Johnson, Kito, Herron, Stevens                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
       NAYS: None                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
       The motion to go into Executive Session passed 9-0.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
       Legislative Council went into executive session.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     5:02:39 PM                                                                                                               
     Legislative Council came out of executive session.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
     b. Capitol Security                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     VICE CHAIR HERRON moved that Legislative Council adopt the                                                                 
     security vulnerability assessment recommendation by Doyon                                                                  
     Universal Services to provide security defensive tools to                                                                  
     the security team, which includes, firearms and less than                                                                  
     lethal  force options such  as Tasers. Security personnel                                                                  
     reporting to Capitol Chief of Security will be compensated                                                                 
     at a range 16.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
     STEVE DAIGLE, Chief of Security, in response to a question                                                                 
     from Senator Micciche about cost, noted that it would be an                                                                
     increase  of $54,000  annually for  salaries, as  well as                                                                  
     approximately $10,000 for additional equipment and $600 per                                                                
     year for necessary training.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     DISCUSSION  FOLLOWED regarding  what  "less  than lethal"                                                                  
     training options were available.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
   With no further questions, a roll call vote was taken.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
     YEAS:   Meyer,  Coghill,  MacKinnon,  Micciche, Chenault,                                                                  
             Johnson, Kito, Herron, Stevens                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     NAYS: None                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
     The motion passed 9-0.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     a. Furlough Policy                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
     5:05:50 PM                                                                                                               
     VICE CHAIR HERRON moved that Legislative Council adopt the                                                                 
     Furlough Policy as per the attached draft.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
     REPRESENTATIVE KITO  offered a  conceptual amendment that                                                                  
     Council  exempt Legislative  Finance, Legal  Services and                                                                  
     Legislative Security from the Furlough Policy. In response                                                                 
     to  a  request  for  clarification  by  Senator Micciche,                                                                  
     Representative Kito said that the exemption was appropriate                                                                
     in  that  from the  perspective of  security, we  will be                                                                  
     required  to  have   security  at  the  building,  so  if                                                                  
     individuals are on furlough, contractors will still have to                                                                
     be hired to do that work. In regard to Legislative Finance                                                                 
     and  Legal Services, they're work  load is not  driven by                                                                  
     their management alone but driven by Legislators. It's very                                                                
       difficult  to   manage  that  workload  without  creating                                                                
       limitations, which they don't have the statutory or policy                                                               
       authority to do on  the work that Legislators ask them to                                                                
       do. Because they don't  have control over those items, he                                                                
       didn't think  it was equitable for those  divisions to be                                                                
       subject to furlough.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
       CHAIR STEVENS said he understood that Legislative Budget &                                                               
       Audit  Committee could make  the  decision to  exempt the                                                                
       officers. In effect, if Council passes this amendment, they                                                              
       would only  be making Legislative Affairs comply with the                                                                
       furlough policy.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
       DISCUSSION FOLLOWED clarifying which sections are proposed                                                               
       as being exempt from the furlough policy.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
       PAM  VARNI, Executive Director of the Legislative Affairs                                                                
       Agency, noted that the last bullet of the Furlough Policy                                                                
       would enable those sections to still work, it's just that                                                                
       employees would be giving up  five days of personal leave                                                                
       without compensation; then it would be fair to everybody.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
       DISCUSSION  FOLLOWED regarding  leave  availability. Also                                                                
       clarification that Legislative Budget & Audit would not be                                                               
       included in this amendment since they report to a different                                                              
       committee.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
       SENATE PRESIDENT MEYER proposed to make an amendment to the                                                              
       amendment.  He  said  if  Legislative Finance  and  Legal                                                                
       Services are too  busy to take furlough, then Legislators                                                                
       need to better police themselves to not put such a burden                                                                
       on those sections. He believed that LB&A and Security are a                                                              
       little different, and since Budget & Audit are not part of                                                               
       this amendment, he  would like to amend  the amendment to                                                                
       only include Security. He said  he was sympathetic to the                                                                
       fact that all  the other sections are taking furlough; if                                                                
       the Judicial Branch can do it, we should be able to do it                                                                
       as well.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
       DISCUSSION  FOLLOWED to  clarify  the  amendment and  the                                                                
       amendment to the amendment.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
       SKIFF LOBAUGH, Human Resources Officer, noted for members                                                                
       that the policy does not require any section or individual                                                               
       to take furlough. He said the  policy just says that if a                                                                
       section or an individual is required to take furlough, this                                                              
       this  is  how it  would  be  implemented. The Legislature                                                                
       decided who would take furlough; this policy does not say                                                                
       who was required to take furlough. The amendment that says,                                                              
     for  instance, to exempt  Legal Services, those  in Legal                                                                  
     Services  who  have  already  taken  furlough, which  was                                                                  
     implemented by Memo of Agreement, would lose a holiday if                                                                  
     the furlough they had taken fell next to a holiday, because                                                                
     they wouldn't have  the protection of the policy to allow                                                                  
     them  to use  furlough under holiday  or health insurance                                                                  
     protection. He again stated that the proposed policy is an                                                                 
     administrative tool that does not require someone to take                                                                  
     furlough; it simply says that if an individual is required                                                                 
     to  take furlough, Personnel will process  it under these                                                                  
     guidelines to maintain benefits.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
     DISCUSSION  FOLLOWED  further  defining what  the  policy                                                                  
     language   accomplished; and   whether  the   policy  was                                                                  
     retroactive.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     CHAIR STEVENS asked for a roll call vote on the amendment                                                                  
     to  the amendment, which was to allow only Security to be                                                                  
     exempted from the Furlough Policy.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
     A roll call vote was taken on amendment to amendment.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     YEAS: Meyer, Coghill, MacKinnon, Micciche                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
     NAYS: Chenault, Johnson, Kito, Herron, Stevens                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
     The amendment to the amendment failed 4-5.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
     A  roll call  vote was taken  on the  amendment to exempt                                                                  
     Legislative Finance, Legal Services, and Security from the                                                                 
     Furlough Policy.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
     YEAS: Kito                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
     NAYS:   Meyer,  Coghill,  MacKinnon,  Micciche, Chenault,                                                                  
             Johnson, Herron, Stevens                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
     The amendment failed 1-8.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
     DISCUSSION FOLLOWED regarding potential budget impacts of                                                                  
     adopting the Furlough Policy. Explanation that the policy                                                                  
     is  simply allowing  Personnel to  process furlough taken                                                                  
     without affecting an employee's benefits, holiday pay, etc.                                                                
     Without this  policy, Personnel would process furlough as                                                                  
     leave without pay, which would negatively impact employees.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     There being  no further discussion, a roll  call vote was                                                                  
     taken on the motion.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
       YEAS:   Meyer, Coghill, MacKinnon, Micciche, Chenault, Kito,                                                             
               Herron, Stevens                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
       NAYS: Johnson                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
       The motion adopting the Furlough Policy passed 8-1.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
       There  being no  further  business before  the committee,                                                                
       Legislative Council adjourned at 5:25 p.m.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
       5:25:47 PM                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
       DRAFT - Legislative Branch Furlough Policy - DRAFT                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
       When  necessary for  budgetary constraints  or for  other                                                                
       operational  needs Legislative  Branch  employees may  be                                                                
       placed on furlough as directed by their hiring authority.                                                                
       Statutory hiring authority for  the Legislative Branch is                                                                
       set out  in AS 24.10.200 (House and Senate Employees), AS                                                                
       24.10.210 (Employees of Legislative Agencies), AS 24.20.050                                                              
       (Executive Director and Staff Legislative Affairs Agency),                                                               
       AS  24.20.221  (Staff Legislative  Finance Division),  AS                                                                
       24.55.070 (Staff and Delegation Office of the Ombudsman),                                                                
       and AS  24.65.070 (Staff and Delegation Office of Victims'                                                               
       Rights).                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
       •  Any day or period  for which an employee is furloughed                                                                
          does not change  an employee's merit anniversary date,                                                                
          leave base date, or leave accrual.                                                                                    
       •  Any day or period  for which an employee is furloughed                                                                
          does not jeopardize an employee's eligibility for health                                                              
          insurance.                                                                                                            
       •  Any day or period  for which an employee is furloughed                                                                
          does not jeopardize an employee's holiday eligibility.                                                                
       •  Any day or period  for which an employee is furloughed                                                                
          does not count as leave without pay for replacement of                                                                
          seasonal leave without pay.                                                                                           
       •  Any day or period  for which an employee is furloughed                                                                
          does reduce  the amount  allocated to  each individual                                                                
          legislator's personal  service  budgets and  therefore                                                                
          cannot be  used to  augment the individual legislators                                                                
          range allotment.                                                                                                      
       •  Any day or period  for which an employee is furloughed                                                                
          does count toward their mandatory leave requirements.                                                                 
       •  An employee may  give up  five days of  personal leave                                                                
          without compensation in  lieu of  taking five days  of                                                                
          furlough.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
     Employees are "furloughed" when they  are directed not to                                                                  
     report for  work and required to take  a period of unpaid                                                                  
     absence from  work. In order  to count as  a furlough the                                                                  
     absence must be at least a full day in length. Furlough can                                                                
     only be done in full day increments and cannot be done on                                                                  
     an hour for hour basis.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
     5:25:47 PM                                                                                                               

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
12.20.16 Leg. Council Agenda and Packet.pdf JLEC 12/20/2016 1:30:00 PM
Leg. Council Agenda and Packet