Legislature(1995 - 1996)
02/23/1995 08:05 AM STA
* first hearing in first committee of referral
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
HOUSE STATE AFFAIRS STANDING COMMITTEE February 23, 1995 8:05 a.m. MEMBERS PRESENT Representative Jeannette James, Chairman Representative Scott Ogan, Vice-Chairman Representative Brian Porter Representative Caren Robinson Representative Ed Willis MEMBERS ABSENT Representative Joe Green Representative Ivan COMMITTEE CALENDAR HJR 22: Relating to maritime boundary between Alaska and the former Union of Soviet Socialist Republics PASSED OUT OF COMMITTEE HB 83: "An Act relating to state implementation of federal statutes." PASSED OUT OF COMMITTEE HB 130: "An Act relating to agency review of public comment on the adoption, amendment, and repeal of regulations; relating to the examination of proposed regulations, amendments of regulations, and orders repealing regulations by the Administrative Regulation Review Committee and the Department of Law; relating to the submission to, and acceptance by, the lieutenant governor of proposed regulations, amendments of regulations, and orders repealing regulations; and requiring agencies to make certain determinations before adopting regulations, amendments of regulations, or orders repealing regulations." HEARD AND HELD HB 30: "An Act relating to a dress code for public schools." PASSED OUT OF COMMITTEE * HB 173: "An Act relating to reports by state agencies." SCHEDULED BUT NOT HEARD *SCR 4: Naming the Poet Laureate of Alaska. SCHEDULED BUT NOT HEARD *HJR 1: Proposing an amendment to the Constitution of the State of Alaska relating to repeal of regulations by the legislature. SCHEDULED BUT NOT HEARD * HB 89: "An Act making a special appropriation to the principal of the permanent fund; and providing for an effective date. SCHEDULED BUT NOT HEARD (* First public hearing) WITNESS REGISTER REPRESENTATIVE AL VEZEY Alaska State Legislature State Capitol, Room 216 Juneau, Alaska 99801-1182 Telephone: 465-3719 POSITION STATEMENT: Provided sponsor statement for HJR 22 CARL OLSON, Chairman State Department Watch P.O. Box 65398 Washington, D.C. 20035 Telephone: 703-276-3330 POSITION STATEMENT: Supported HJR 22 MARK SEIDENBERG, Vice-Chairman State Department Watch P.O. Box 7981 Northridge, California 91327 Telephone: 818-363-6210 POSITION STATEMENT: Supported HJR 22 ALAN KINGMAN, Legislative Aide to Representative Scott Ogan Alaska State Legislature State Capitol, Room 409 Juneau, Alaska 99801-1182 Telephone: 465-3878 POSITION STATEMENT: Provided sponsor statement for CSHB 83 BRUCE CAMPBELL, Legislative Aide to Representative Pete Kelly Alaska State Legislature State Capitol, Room 513 Juneau, Alaska 99801-1182 Telephone: 465-2327 POSITION STATEMENT: Provided sponsor statement for HB 130 ELIZABETH ROBERTS, Legislative Aide to Representative Bettye Davis Alaska State Legislature State Capitol, Room 430 Juneau, Alaska 99801-1182 Telephone: 465-3875 POSITION STATEMENT: Provided sponsor statement for HB 30 PREVIOUS ACTION BILL: HJR 22 SHORT TITLE: ALASKA/RUSSIA MARITIME BOUNDARY SPONSOR(S): REPRESENTATIVE(S) VEZEY, Ogan, Toohey, James JRN-DATE JRN-PG ACTION 01/25/95 129 (H) READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRAL(S) 01/25/95 129 (H) WTR, STA 02/14/95 (H) WTR AT 05:00 PM CAPITOL 408 02/14/95 (H) MINUTE(WTR) 02/15/95 395 (H) COSPONSOR(S): JAMES 02/16/95 405 (H) WTR RPT CS(WTR) 6DP 02/16/95 405 (H) DP: WILLIAMS, MULDER, PHILLIPS 02/16/95 405 (H) DP: G.DAVIS, KUBINA, BARNES 02/16/95 405 (H) 2 ZERO FISCAL NOTES (WTR, GOV) 02/23/95 (H) STA AT 08:00 AM CAPITOL 102 BILL: HB 83 SHORT TITLE: REVIEW OF FEDERALLY MANDATED PROGRAMS SPONSOR(S): REPRESENTATIVE(S) OGAN, Porter, Kohring, Toohey, James JRN-DATE JRN-PG ACTION 01/13/95 42 (H) PREFILE RELEASED 01/16/95 42 (H) READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRAL(S) 01/16/95 42 (H) WTR, STA, JUD 01/25/95 136 (H) COSPONSOR(S): KOHRING, TOOHEY 01/27/95 162 (H) COSPONSOR(S): JAMES 01/31/95 (H) WTR AT 05:00 PM CAPITOL 408 01/31/95 (H) MINUTE(WTR) 02/03/95 242 (H) COSPONSOR(S): KELLY 02/08/95 268 (H) WTR RPT CS(WTR) 3DP 4NR 02/08/95 269 (H) DP: PHILLIPS, WILLIAMS, BARNES 02/08/95 269 (H) NR: KUBINA, G.DAVIS, MULDER, MACKIE 02/08/95 269 (H) 8 FISCAL NOTES (GOV, DCRA, F&G, DHSS) 02/08/95 269 (H) (LAW, DPS, REV, DOTPF) 2/8/95 02/08/95 269 (H) 9 ZERO FN (ADM, DCED, DOC, DOE, DEC) 02/08/95 269 (H) (F&G, LABOR, DNR, DM&VA) 2/8/95 02/08/95 269 (H) REFERRED TO STA 02/14/95 (H) STA AT 08:00 AM CAPITOL 519 02/21/95 (H) STA AT 08:00 AM CAPITOL 102 02/23/95 (H) STA AT 08:00 AM CAPITOL 102 BILL: HB 130 SHORT TITLE: REGULATION ADOPTION PROCEDURES & REVIEW SPONSOR(S): REPRESENTATIVE(S) KELLY, James JRN-DATE JRN-PG ACTION 01/27/95 157 (H) READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRAL(S) 01/27/95 157 (H) STA, JUD, FIN 02/14/95 (H) STA AT 08:00 AM CAPITOL 519 02/14/95 (H) MINUTE(STA) 02/14/95 (H) ARR AT 12:00 PM BUTROVICH ROOM 205 02/15/95 396 (H) COSPONSOR(S): JAMES 02/21/95 (H) STA AT 08:00 AM CAPITOL 102 02/21/95 (H) ARR AT 12:00 PM BUTROVICH ROOM 205 02/22/95 (H) ARR AT 04:00 PM BELTZ ROOM 211 02/22/95 (H) ARR AT 04:00 PM BELTZ ROOM 211 02/23/95 (H) STA AT 08:00 AM CAPITOL 102 BILL: HB 30 SHORT TITLE: SCHOOL DRESS CODES SPONSOR(S): REPRESENTATIVE(S) B.DAVIS JRN-DATE JRN-PG ACTION 01/06/95 28 (H) PREFILE RELEASED 01/16/95 28 (H) READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRAL(S) 01/16/95 28 (H) STA, HES 02/09/95 (H) STA AT 08:00 AM CAPITOL 102 02/09/95 (H) MINUTE(STA) 02/14/95 (H) STA AT 08:00 AM CAPITOL 519 02/14/95 (H) MINUTE(STA) 02/21/95 (H) STA AT 08:00 AM CAPITOL 102 02/23/95 (H) STA AT 08:00 AM CAPITOL 102 BILL: HB 173 SHORT TITLE: REPORTS TO THE LEGISLATURE SPONSOR(S): REPRESENTATIVE(S) G.DAVIS, Navarre, Toohey, Finkelstein, Bunde Rokeberg, Brown, James JRN-DATE JRN-PG ACTION 02/10/95 302 (H) READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRAL(S) 02/10/95 302 (H) STATE AFFAIRS 02/13/95 343 (H) COSPONSOR(S): TOOHEY, FINKELSTEIN, BUNDE 02/13/95 343 (H) COSPONSOR(S): ROKEBERG, BROWN 02/15/95 396 (H) COSPONSOR(S): JAMES 02/23/95 (H) STA AT 08:00 AM CAPITOL 102 BILL: SCR 4 SHORT TITLE: POET LAUREATE OF ALASKA SPONSOR(S): SENATOR(S) LEMAN, Halford, Duncan, Zharoff, Taylor, Green, Torgerson; REPRESENTATIVE(S) Toohey, Navarre JRN-DATE JRN-PG ACTION 01/20/95 58 (S) READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRAL(S) 01/20/95 58 (S) STATE AFFAIRS 01/31/95 (S) STA AT 03:30 PM BELTZ ROOM 211 02/02/95 (S) STA AT 03:30 PM BELTZ ROOM 211 02/02/95 (S) MINUTE(STA) 02/03/95 159 (S) STA RPT 4DP 02/03/95 159 (S) ZERO FISCAL NOTE (DOE) 02/07/95 (S) RLS AT 11:40 AM FAHRENKAMP ROOM 203 02/07/95 (S) MINUTE(RLS) 02/09/95 219 (S) RULES TO CALENDAR 2/9/95 02/09/95 223 (S) READ THE SECOND TIME 02/09/95 223 (S) COSPONSOR(S): HALFORD, DUNCAN, ZHAROFF, 02/09/95 223 (S) TAYLOR, GREEN, TORGERSON 02/09/95 223 (S) PASSED Y19 N- E1 02/09/95 226 (S) TRANSMITTED TO (H) 02/10/95 290 (H) READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRAL(S) 02/10/95 290 (H) STATE AFFAIRS 02/10/95 322 (H) CROSS SPONSOR(S): TOOHEY, NAVARRE 02/23/95 (H) STA AT 08:00 AM CAPITOL 102 BILL: HJR 1 SHORT TITLE: REPEAL OF REGULATIONS BY LEGISLATURE SPONSOR(S): REPRESENTATIVE(S) PHILLIPS, Rokeberg, Brice, Green JRN-DATE JRN-PG ACTION 01/06/95 16 (H) PREFILE RELEASED 01/16/95 16 (H) READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRAL(S) 01/16/95 16 (H) STATE AFFAIRS, JUDICIARY 01/18/95 73 (H) COSPONSOR(S): GREEN 02/07/95 (H) MINUTE(ARR) 02/14/95 (H) STA AT 08:00 AM CAPITOL 519 02/23/95 (H) STA AT 08:00 AM CAPITOL 102 BILL: HB 89 SHORT TITLE: APPROP: TO PERMANENT FUND PRINCIPAL SPONSOR(S): REPRESENTATIVE(S) MARTIN,James JRN-DATE JRN-PG ACTION 01/17/95 51 (H) READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRAL(S) 01/17/95 51 (H) STATE AFFAIRS, JUDICIARY, FINANCE 02/23/95 (H) STA AT 08:00 AM CAPITOL 102 ACTION NARRATIVE TAPE 95-20, SIDE A Number 000 The meeting of the House State Affairs Standing Committee was called to order by Chair Jeannette James at 8:05 a.m. Members present at the call to order were Representatives James, Porter, Ogan, and Willis. Representative Robinson arrived at 8:22 a.m. Representatives Green and Ivan were absent. CHAIR JEANNETTE JAMES stated there was a quorum present. She announced that the committee would be hearing HJR 22 first, as there was a teleconference that needed to be accommodated. She called Representative Al Vezey to testify as the sponsor of HJR 22. Number 015 HSTA - 2/23/95 HJR 22 - ALASKA/RUSSIA MARITIME BOUNDARY REPRESENTATIVE AL VEZEY, sponsor of HJR 22, stated this bill is not the first time this subject has been before the legislature. He said that on at least two previous occasions, the legislature has passed resolutions dealing with Wrangell Island. He asked for the opportunity to give the committee some historical background, as he said there were some who argued resolutions of this type were somehow meant to provoke some type of conflict with the Russian government. He said this was not true, that Wrangell Island was discovered and claimed by Americans, as well as occupied by them. He said that in the 1900s, Arctic exploration had the glamour and mystique that space exploration has for us today. It wasn't until 1909, that man actually reached the Polar Regions. Siberia, he said was still a vast unexplored wilderness. A Swedish naval officer with Russian citizenship, by the name of Von Wrangell, was a very famous Arctic explorer. He stated there was a lot of speculation about what was in the Arctic Ocean in the 1900s, including thoughts that there was a large continent there and that it was a warm water ocean if you could just get past the ice blockade that cut it off from the Bering Straits or the Atlantic Ocean. There is some speculation, he said, that Von Wrangell first spotted Wrangell Island, but most historical facts indicate that he could not have possibly done so, based on the coordinates of his location and the actual location of Wrangell Island. He stated that in 1867, an American whaling boat was the first to spot Wrangell Island and record it on a map. He said one of the most famous Arctic explorations of the last century was the voyage of the USS Jeannette. He said the USS Jeannette was a navy vessel staffed with naval officers, but that it was sponsored by private enterprise and it's crew was made up of private citizens. He said the actual sponsor of the voyage was the publisher of the New York Herald, James Bennett. He was the most flamboyant newspaper publisher of the day. He said that he sponsored many such voyages, with the intent of selling newspapers. With his sponsorship, the USS Jeannette went north into the Arctic under Captain Delong. In 1879, the USS Jeannette got stuck in the polar ice and was unable to get out. For two years, this vessel drifted in the Arctic ice. On July 12, 1881, the ice crushed the Jeannette, which sank, and whose crew abandoned ship and got separated as they made their way to the Siberian coastline. Half of the crew perished from starvation and the remainder was saved by some Siberian Eskimos off the Lena River Delta. Meanwhile, rescue missions had been launched to try and find the Jeannette. One of these was the US Revenue Marine ship, Thomas Corwyn. While sailing in this area, the ship spotted Wrangell Island and landed on it, claiming it in the name of the United States. One of the crewman present on the Thomas Corwyn was the founder of the Sierra Club, John Muir. He said this was well documented in the Congressional record and in official naval histories. This expedition was followed by the USS Rogers just a few weeks later, which landed on Wrangell Island and surveyed the entire 3,000 square mile island. Prior to this, it was not known whether this was an island or a peninsula of a large continent. Original maps showed this not as Wrangell Island, but as Wrangell Land. He said that to back up in history, Von Wrangell was the governor of Russian Alaska in the 1840s. He clarified that Von Wrangell did not ever really sight Wrangell Island. Subsequent to its discovery and claim by the United States in 1881, many things took place on Wrangell Island. He said that in 1910, there was actually a Hollywood movie filmed on Wrangell Island. Wrangell Island was also the base for many polar bear hunts and expeditions by museums in New York and Chicago. In 1921, an American citizen named Val Maar Stephenson, received title from the U. S. State Department and attempted to start a settlement on the island. This settlement failed and in 1923, a rescue vessel finally reached it. Only one survivor remained, an Eskimo woman named Ata Blackjack. At that point, the Loman brothers of Nome paid Stephenson $100,000 for title to Wrangell Island, with plans to turn it into a large reindeer station. They proceeded with their plans until 1924, when the Russian gunboat, Red October, landed with a company of soldiers and took the American colonists prisoner. Several of the colonists died in captivity and those that survived were returned to the United States without their property or valuables. Subsequent to this event, there have been numerous correspondences and meetings with first Russia, then the Soviet Union, and now Russia again, regarding Wrangell Island. He stated that the U.S. always maintained that the Wrangell Islands, the Delong Islands, and Henrietta Island were sovereign possessions of the United States. He said this correspondence went on until 1984, at which point the U.S. State Department took the position that the United States did not have sovereignty over the islands. REPRESENTATIVE VEZEY said that he wanted to back up in history to 1867, and the United States' purchase of Alaska. He said that with that purchase, there was never established a boundary between Alaska and Russia. He stated that we had what was called a conference line, which amounts to a purchase agreement. He said this conference line could not be represented on a map and that to this day, there was no boundary between Russia and Alaska. He mentioned that in 1986, the U.S. Department of the Interior set up an offshore lease sale in the Navarin Basin, estimated to hold 1.9 billion barrels of petroleum. In the lease sale, he said, the Department of Interior clarified the boundary between the United States and Russia was uncertain and that actual title to these leases could not be ascertained for certain. He stated that after a couple of years, the Department of Interior was forced to return the lease deposits to the bidders, as they were unable to clarify the boundary between the United States and Russia. At that time, the U.S. State Department started taking the position the United States had no claim on Wrangell Island. The United States Senate never ratified a proposed treaty the State Department put forward to the Soviet Union, but the State Department said it would abide by the terms of the treaty until it was ratified. He said the U.S. Congress actually issued a resolution stating they were not going to give up this territory. Following the proposed treaty, the Soviet Union dissolved, and the treaty still has not been ratified. Thus, the status of Wrangell Island and the boundary between Alaska and Russia still remains unsettled. He said that in reality, we were talking tens of thousands of square miles of continental shelf territory, as well as the islands themselves. He stated this resolution takes the position that the legislature of this state feels that Alaska has an interest in these negotiations, and that if there are any negotiations between the United States and Russia, regarding this matter, then the State of Alaska should have a delegate present. REPRESENTATIVE VEZEY said the original resolution contained language that requested the Governor to take extensive steps to pursue Alaska's interests in these properties. Because of this, the Department of Law attached a $150,000 fiscal note to this resolution to compensate attorneys to do research. He said he did not intend to make a big issue of this or a large fiscal note, in fact, he did not want to create any fiscal impact with this resolution. He stated the research on this issue had already been done by other interested parties. An example of support for this issue is the state of California, whose legislature has passed resolutions in support of Alaska's claim and participation in any talks regarding the Wrangell Islands. They have a very similar situation with islands off their coast, in that there is not a clear boundary with Mexico. Again, the boundary between California and Mexico was not established by the treaty between Mexico and the United States. REPRESENTATIVE VEZEY asked that the committee adopt another committee substitute for HJR 22, which adds wording requesting the Governor take action to protect Alaska's interests in this matter, but keeping it simple to avoid adding costs in a fiscal note for this resolution. He mentioned that the committee had before them, the attached fiscal note for $150,000 from the previous committee, but stated this note had been changed to a zero dollar fiscal note by the previous committee. He wanted to note that there were two witnesses on teleconference, who have been working on this matter for over 20 years and were personal friends with Ralph Loman, the individual who actually held title to Wrangell Island. He said they have conducted several interviews with him and were responsible for gathering much of the data the committee had before them. He added this was just a small part of the research that has taken place on this matter. He urged the committee to keep Alaska's interests in these islands in the forefront, and if the United States is going to negotiate away a part of Alaska's territorial boundaries, then at least Alaska should be allowed to participated in these negotiations. He concluded by saying he would be happy to answer any questions of the committee. CHAIR JAMES stated that she thought that the committee should hear the testimony from the witnesses on teleconference before asking any questions. She asked if Carl Olson was available to testify. Number 328 CARL OLSON, Chairman, State Department Watch, stated that his group had been fighting this giveaway of U.S. territory to the Russians for over ten years. He added that they were the only group allowed to testify at the U.S. Senate hearings when the U.S./U.S.S.R. Maritime Boundary Agreement came up for consideration. Mr. Olson said he strongly urges the passage of this resolution, because in the 15 years that the State Department has been working on these negotiations, they have never allowed the state of Alaska or the general public to participate. He thought definite legal action was needed as soon as possible to correct this. He stated past Alaska legislatures have passed a series of resolutions on this matter over the last eight years, and even sent a letter to the U.S. Senate Committee on Foreign Relations urging renegotiation to include full participation and consent by the state of Alaska. To this date, it has been to no avail. He said that to add further to Alaska and the United States, at the time that the agreement was signed in 1990, Secretary of State James Baker signed a side agreement stating the terms of this agreement would be abided by regardless of whether it was ever ratified by the Congress. He said this act amounted to in effect a unilateral amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which gives the Secretary of State the power to adopt agreements that would normally take a completed treaty to implement. He added that this was a secret agreement, not mentioned at the time or mentioned at the time the proposed U.S./U.S.S.R. Maritime Boundary Agreement was transmitted to Congress. He said it was not mentioned in State Department's testimony at the Senate hearings on this issue, or even in Senate floor debate on the matter. He said that as a result of their efforts, tens of thousands of letters have been transmitted to the State Department opposing this giveaway and several organizations have adopted resolutions opposing the State Department agreement. MR. OLSON stated that the state of California was strongly backing Alaska's right to participate in this issue, as a threat to one state's territorial sovereignty was a threat to all. He added that a few days ago, he had been told by California Senator Don Rogers, that he was planning to introduce an updated version of this resolution, and expected it to pass overwhelmingly. He concluded by saying he thought legal issues needed to be pursued with regard to this matter and the Governor and Attorney General needed to be impressed with the magnitude of this problem. He stated that his group had done extensive legal research on this matter, amounting to hundreds of hours, and would be happy to make it available. He thanked the committee for the opportunity to testify. CHAIR JAMES thanked Mr. Olson for his testimony and asked Mark Seidenberg if he was available to testify. Number 372 MARK SEIDENBERG, Vice-Chairman, State Department Watch, said he wanted to impress on the committee the magnitude of the loss for the state of Alaska if it fails to fight for its' rights. He stated that most people are aware that Alaska is over twice the size of Texas, but that too few know that in 1977, the United States grew by about three times the size of Texas in the vicinity of Alaska, because it was now entitled to 200 miles of exclusive economic zone extending seaward from every coastline. As a result of the proposed U.S./U.S.S.R. Maritime Boundary, the federal government is intent on giving away enough seabed in the Arctic Ocean and Bering Sea, equal to about one-tenth its size in territory. He added the state of Alaska faces a loss of sovereignty, property, minerals and other resource rights, and related businesses and jobs. The total could easily range into the billions of dollars. Mr. Seidenberg said that as a result of the Submerged Lands Act, states own the rights to submerged lands up to three miles from their coastline. Thus, the state of Alaska will be deprived of its submerged lands around Wrangell, Harold, Bennett, Jeannette, and Henrietta Islands in the Arctic Ocean. It would also be deprived of its rights to the submerged lands around Copper Island, Sea Lion Rock, and Sea Otter Rock at the western-most part of the Aleutians. He said in addition, the submerged lands around Little Diomede Island in the Bering Straits, have been arbitrarily chopped off by the federal government negotiators in their drawing of the proposed maritime boundary. He stated that it slices the western-most part of the island and doesn't even pretend to be an equidistant boundary between Little Diomede and Big Diomede Island. He argued that the hasty manner in which the federal government negotiated the proposed boundary line, can be seen in its ignorance of traditional boundary surveying practice. Mr. Seidenberg stated the baseline is supposed to be set by using the average mean water line on the relevant coast, but that the U.S. Coast and Geodetic survey has told them it has never conducted the necessary surveys to establish the baseline along the relevant coast. Thus, it becomes apparent, that the federal government never intended to do a thorough and accurate job to begin with. He summarized the possible loss of resources to Alaska, by saying there was a good chance that valuable oil and gas deposits exist throughout the Chukchi Sea. Furthermore, Alaska is the largest fishing state in the country and the Texas size seabeds to be abandoned to Russia include valuable fishing grounds. This would mean a great loss to the U.S. fishing fleet and related shore-based processing facilities. He thought that if this proposed agreement is allowed to go unopposed, then the federal government is being allowed to unconstitutionally alienate a portion of the territory of the sovereign state of Alaska, without it's consent, thereby affecting the rights and economic health of Alaska. He argued that this was a plight, not just for Alaskans, but for all Americans. Mr. Seidenberg said that their group pledged their assistance to help Alaska to assert and win it's rightful sovereignty, property, minerals and other resource rights. He said he would be willing to answer any questions the committee might have. CHAIR JAMES asked if there were any questions that the committee might have of either of the testifying witnesses. REPRESENTATIVE ED WILLIS asked what some of the past Presidential administrations had done with regards to this issue. Number 448 MR. OLSON responded that the negotiations over this proposed boundary had started back in 1978, with the U.S. State Department and have gone through four administrations, whose bureaucracy maintained the same position of giving this area away to the Russians and not allowing the participation of anyone but themselves. Mr. Olson indicated they had actually kept a series of negotiations secret so that no one else could participate. Unfortunately, he said there had been a bi-partisan effort to deny Alaska it's rights and property. REPRESENTATIVE WILLIS further queried what the position had been from Alaska's own congressional delegation. REPRESENTATIVE VEZEY answered by saying that in the packet was enclosed an Attorney General's opinion by Avrum Gross, dating from 1975. The state had taken a position back then, he said. He stated that subsequent to that time, there had been a somewhat non-committal position. He said roughly speaking, the congressional delegation position has been that Alaska should not get involved with international negotiations. He thought that they were not really taking a position one way or the other. He urged Carl Olson to update the committee on the position of our congressional delegation. Number 476 MR. OLSON said he could not speak directly for either Senator Murkowski or Stevens, but that they had not been very helpful in the matter. He stated they had not been vigorously pursuing the interests of the state of Alaska. Mr. Olson said that he did want to mention that Congressman Don Young was a co-sponsor of a bill that would have required that any of these types of maritime boundary negotiations were in the form of a treaty, requiring congressional ratification. He stated our two U.S. Senators had not been helpful at all in this matter, and had actually spoken in favor of the proposed U.S./U.S.S.R. Maritime Boundary agreement. CHAIR JAMES commented that it appeared to her that Alaska's interest would be more with regards to the maritime boundary with Russia, as opposed to the issue of sovereignty over Wrangell Island. She said knowing the relationship between the federal government and Alaska, if it was determined the United States had sovereignty over Wrangell Island, they would more than likely not want to include it as territory of Alaska. She said though, that we certainly have an interest in the proposed maritime boundary, especially considering the arbitrary line they have drawn cuts off a corner of Little Diomede Island. She thought we certainly needed to correct this deficiency and determine a more fair boundary, and that we were certainly a player in any negotiations. She felt this was a very valid resolution and that it ought to go forward to the next committee. She said that we have to make a statement. She asked if there were any further comments or questions from the committee. REPRESENTATIVE VEZEY wanted to clarify that the State Department did issue title to Wrangell Island to first Stephenson and then the Loman Brothers Company, and they recognized this for many years. He thought that Carl Olson could possibly elaborate, but he believed this title was actually recorded in Alaska. CHAIR JAMES asked though, whether they bought it for the state of Alaska or for themselves. REPRESENTATIVE VEZEY responded that they obviously bought for themselves, that when any individual buys property, they do so for themselves not the state of Alaska. He pointed out though that the governance and the laws were all under the authority of Alaska, and that as he understood it, the documents were recorded in Alaska. MR. SEIDENBERG stated he thought he was better prepared to answer those questions than Mr. Olson. He said that in 1881, Mr. Hooper the captain of the ship, Thomas Corwyn, gave the order for the United States government to take possession of Wrangell Island. All five of these islands were determined by the United States geological survey, to be inclusive within Alaska. They published a publication called Altitudes in Alaska, in 1900. Mr. Seidenberg indicated it was already part of Alaska during the time that the Treasury Department administered Alaska, during its stewardship between 1877 and 1884, prior to Alaska's first organic act. He said it was the federal government that placed those islands in Alaska. When the Loman Brothers purchased the island on April 1, 1924, they had a conversation with the current Secretary of State, Charles Evans Hughes, on May 13th of that year, and he acknowledged that they were the owners of the property. Mr. Hughes later became a Chief Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court and was an international lawyer. At that time, he said that the Russians had no claim to the islands under international law, and that the Loman Brothers were the rightful owners of the island. The island has been a part of Alaska since 1881, and the U.S. Department of Interior published a map and numerous documents up through 1977, and listed it as U.S. territory on those documents as a part of Alaska. CHAIR JAMES stated she supposed that whatever the case with regards to sovereignty over Wrangell Island, Alaska should be a player in any negotiations. She said this was what the resolution stated and she would urge the committee to pass it out. She asked if there were any other questions or comments from the committee, or if Representative Vezey wanted to add anything to his sponsor statement. REPRESENTATIVE VEZEY encouraged the committee members to hold on to this packet, as it was quite a compilation of Alaskan history and not easily attainable without considerable effort. CHAIR JAMES agreed and added that she had the book which told the story of the U.S.S. Jeannette expedition if anyone was interested in borrowing it. Number 555 REPRESENTATIVE CAREN ROBINSON asked what had amounted to the letter, which was sent May 17,1991, and signed by the Alaska State Legislature. REPRESENTATIVE VEZEY said he did not think that anything had come of any of the correspondence regarding this matter, as the issue was still in limbo. He stated that the issue was still unresolved. REPRESENTATIVE ROBINSON asked if he had any suggestions as to how we could keep this issue at the forefront, instead of having to continually send resolutions that they just ignore. REPRESENTATIVE VEZEY answered that he thought the main thing that this resolution would accomplish is to keep the issue in the public eye, so that the federal government would not be able to abrogate our rights without an explanation. He said there was always the option of pursuing legal action and there was tremendous legal grounds for at least appealing to the International Court of Claims. He thought we could, if we wanted to, appeal this whole issue to the United Nations. He stated he did not think anyone was advocating that we get involved in a long drawn out legal expense at this time, but that as recent as the last decade, there were people recovering claims dating back to the Civil War for international incidents that occurred in this region. CHAIR JAMES verified that the committee members had a copy of the proposed committee substitute version F. REPRESENTATIVE VEZEY stated that they did not, but that his aide would pass them out at that time. CHAIR JAMES asked Representative Vezey to explain the difference between the proposed substitute and the original draft of HJR 22. Number 567 REPRESENTATIVE VEZEY stated that the proposed committee substitute adds wording, page three line 26, requesting the Attorney General and the Governor pursue these matters. CHAIR JAMES asked whether this was a recommendation from the House Special Committee of World Trade and State/Federal Relations. REPRESENTATIVE VEZEY answered that the original draft contained much stronger language with more detail and this version was toned down and just requests that the Administration get involved and take a position. CHAIR JAMES asked for a motion adopting CSHJR 22(STA) version F as the committee's working document. Number 595 REPRESENTATIVE SCOTT OGAN moved to adopt CSHJR 22(STA) version F as the committee's working document. CHAIR JAMES asked if there were any objections. Hearing none, the motion passed. She asked for a motion to pass the bill out of committee. Number 602 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN moved to pass CSHJR 22 (STA), version F, out of committee with a zero fiscal note and individual recommendations. CHAIR JAMES asked if there were any objections. Hearing none, the resolution was passed out of the House State Affairs Committee. HSTA - 2/23/95 HB 83 - REVIEW OF FEDERALLY MANDATED PROGRAMS CHAIR JAMES stated that next on the agenda was CSHB 83. She asked if Representative Ogan was ready to present his bill. REPRESENTATIVE OGAN asked for a brief recess to prepare. Number 624 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN stated that during the last hearing of this bill, there were some concerns raised by the Office of Management and Budget, that this could be interpreted as getting too detail oriented with regards to federal mandates and could affect trivial mandates such as the requirement to have fire exits marked. He said his aide and a representative from OMB had discussed the issue and resolved it. Another concern raised by Representative Brian Porter was that the bill was conceived to be more reactive than proactive, in that it did not have provisions to try and intercede before federal mandates were finalized. He brought with him an amendment, which he was hesitant to introduce, but said he would be happy to have it discussed by the committee. He said they did have a brief presentation with visual aids that his assistant could conduct. Number 647 ALAN KINGMAN, Legislative Aide to Representative Ogan, said he was there to present a visual overview to demonstrate how the committee substitute for HB 83 would restructure the review of federal mandates in Alaska. He stated that Representative Ogan was concerned that there was some confusion as to how CSHB 83(STA) actually worked. To begin, he defined the type of mandate this bill would effect as a federal law that implements a desired federal policy by requiring state or local governments to participate in or administer a program. He said this bill requires a review of federally mandated programs. It does not review federal preemptions or laws that place limits on states or on people. He said it only addresses laws that require the state to act to implement or administer a program. Examples of these could be environmental laws, public health laws, welfare programs, and public safety programs such as the Brady Bill. These are the types of programs that CSHB 83(STA) is dealing with, not things such as building codes that a state or individual may have to comply with. MR. KINGMAN said he also wanted to address unfunded mandates, which he defined as a mandate in which a state or local entity must raise the money to pay for their required participation in this program. He reiterated though, that unfunded mandates were not the only type of mandate that this bill was dealing with. Some mandates are funded, but may not be cost-effective or efficient, suited for Alaska's conditions, or exceed constitutional authority. CSHB 83(STA), he said, is designed to be an immunization against excessive mandates. He said the current version of this bill, adopted by this committee earlier, had two separate provisions to deal with existing mandates and newly passed mandates. For existing mandates, CSHB 83(STA) would require the OMB to select one-fourth of the existing mandates for review every year. Thus, every four years, there would be an opportunity for all mandates to be reviewed. At the end of this time, there would be a different administration who may have a different perspective. They might want to conduct their own review. At this point, OMB, the Department of Law, and the implementing agency would review the mandate for these criteria: 1) Has the federal government exceeded their authority; 2) Are the requirements consistent with Alaska state policy and suitable for Alaska; 3) Are the requirements cost-effective to implement. Once the review is completed, a report is drafted, which is sent to the Governor, House and Senate Judiciary Committees, and the Legislative Budget and Audit Committee by February 1, of that year. At this point, they will review this report. For mandates that come down from Congress after the passage of this bill, the agency head will learn of the new mandate and will review it for the above mentioned criteria. They will then draft a report and send it to the Governor and House and Senate Judiciary Committees. The agency will not be allowed to implement the mandate until the Governor approves the report and gives the go ahead. The Judiciary Committees would also do their own review. The final step, for all mandates, establishes the review of the report coming from either the OMB or the implementing agency by the judiciary committees, who do their own analysis of the mandate. They would have the option to contract with a legal firm and then make their report to the Governor and the Alaska congressional delegation. Their recommendations would be of the nature of whether there is a need to seek a change in the federal mandate, possible ways to modify the program to make it more cost-effective, or if it would be advisable to legally challenge the mandate. Also, once the agency gets authorization from the Governor to implement a mandate, this bill would require them to develop the program and implement the mandate according to the financial constraints of the state at the time and weighing the costs of implementation against the long-term Alaska benefit. Mr. Kingman said this was how the bill currently functioned. The suggestion made by Representative Porter, at an earlier committee, dealt with adding a section to this bill, which would allow the state to become active with federal mandates when they still are under consideration by the U.S. Congress, before they become law. He thought it might be possible to include this in the bill, by having the Washington D.C. Office of the Governor, monitor legislation and then give the implementing state agency an early warning of a potential mandated program for that agency. At this point, the agency would conduct an early expedited review and report back to the Governor. The Governor could then make a decision as to whether Alaska should try to intervene in the legislation process. This could either be added into this bill by the proposed amendment before the committee, or might be something that should be a totally separate bill. CHAIR JAMES asked if there were any questions or comments from the committee. TAPE 95-20, SIDE B Number 200 REPRESENTATIVE WILLIS stated he still was not sure he understood the total process of this bill and wanted to know how this bill would effect existing programs such as the Davis Bacon Act. MR. KINGMAN stated he was not familiar with this act by that name and asked for some more detail. REPRESENTATIVE WILLIS said that essentially, when a contractor does work on a federal project, they must pay workers the prevailing union wage. MR. KINGMAN was not sure that this act would be affected by CSHB 83(STA), in that it does not require by his description, the state to implement a federal program. CHAIR JAMES thought she might clarify how the Davis Bacon Act actually works, in that it does require the state to do some things. She said the state must determine what the prevailing wage actually is, but that the money in the contract is federal money and not state money. Number 258 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN said he believed this act also applied to state jobs as well and that essentially non-union contractors must pay the same rate as union contractors. Thus, the idea is that it levels the playing field between non-union and union contractors. MR. KINGMAN said that based on this description, the fact that the state is required to determine the prevailing wage, that this might be considered a mini-program and be subject to review by this bill. He reminded the committee that this bill does not make any determinations as to whether the state should participate in a federal program, it just gives us a better understanding of the costs of our participation. REPRESENTATIVE WILLIS asked for further clarification as to how this bill would function and offered the Americans With Disabilities Act as an example to see how it would fit under this legislation. MR. KINGMAN responded that to the extent the state is charged with implementing this act, then it would certainly be subject to review under CSHB 83(STA). Number 287 CHAIR JAMES clarified that this bill would require a calculation of the dollar figure of implementing a program as a part of the report. She thought that this was good and stated that the public would probably have apoplexy if we knew what these programs were costing us. MR. KINGMAN agreed, saying this was one of the benefits of this bill, is that it allows us to see what those costs really are, in that it requires to check whether there might be a more cost-effective approach. Number 331 REPRESENTATIVE ROBINSON stated that some federal laws have a time line in which they must be implemented. She asked how this bill proposes to conduct its review before that time limit is reached. MR. KINGMAN replied that this would essentially be up to the Administration, but that this was why this bill allowed for a program to be implemented before the entire review had been completed. What would be required before implementation could go ahead, is the initial analysis report of the implementing agency. Upon receiving this report, the Governor can either authorize complete implementation or implementation in a certain fashion. This allows for the committees to complete their review and determine a more long term approach. REPRESENTATIVE ROBINSON asked if it would be in the report in the case of mandates where there is a penalty for not complying with a particular mandate. CHAIR JAMES followed up by asking if they were just considering the expense of the state or if they were factoring the costs to the public and the private sector as well. MR. KINGMAN said that essentially they were just talking about state spending, but that there was nothing to prevent the OMB or the implementing agency from extending their review to include costs to the public. Number 353 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN stated that when a new administration came in, unless the mandate had changed considerably, their review might consist of just reviewing the existing data and making a decision. He said that they did not have to "reinvent the wheel." He added their hope was this review would cause some of these mandates to be challenged in court, as he believed the federal government routinely oversteps its constitutional authority. REPRESENTATIVE ROBINSON noticed that the fiscal note was relatively small. She wondered if she had all of the documentation. MR. KINGMAN stated that in their packets, there should be an overview sheet. CHAIR JAMES said there was, but that it did not reflect the reduced fiscal note. Number 382 MR. KINGMAN added that the overview sheet and the existing fiscal notes reflected the old version of this bill, which required that the review be done annually and not every four years. He said that they believed the fiscal note would be considerably reduced in this new version. He noted that the last few pages in their packet reflected the reduced fiscal notes from the last committee. CHAIR JAMES stated she would think the intent of this bill should in practice already be being done and that it would be allowed to be done without this bill, but probably wouldn't. She said her biggest concern is the relatively large fiscal note, although she recognized the presumption was that there would actually be a cost-savings by this review and possibly challenging some of these mandates in court. She said this was a premise and not necessarily a fact, as we had no backup for this. Chair James also stated that she wished that there was a list of programs that would be reviewed under this legislation and those that would not be. She thought that as it went through the committee process, this bill might be very vulnerable because of it's large fiscal note. She said they were in a cost-cutting mode. She suspected that if this bill were passed, it would not be funded, and so be ineffective. She gave an example of a past bill that fit this category, in that it passed the legislature and has not been funded for the past ten years. Number 442 REPRESENTATIVE PORTER said he appreciated the sponsor offering this amendment. Realizing that the amendment might create a separations of power issue, he felt that looking back on it, it might be better to not include it in this bill after all, and that as the motivator of this idea, he would withdraw his suggestion. He reiterated though, that he appreciated the effort. CHAIR JAMES noted that this bill had a further referral to the judiciary committee. She asked for a motion to pass this bill to the next committee of referral. REPRESENTATIVE OGAN commented for the record, that as the sponsor, if the committee felt this bill would not save the state money, then he would prefer that it not pass out of this committee. He believed it would save money and that the states were crying out for relief from the tyranny of these federal mandates. He said this bill would depend a lot on the governor pursuing this issue and challenging many of these mandates. He stated he came down to Juneau to try and reduce the size of government, and he reiterated if this bill did not save the state money, then he would rather not pass it out of committee. Number 488 REPRESENTATIVE PORTER said that considering this, the question still remained as to how to overcome the supremacy of federal law over state law, although he recognized that many of the 10th Amendment suits currently being pursued would answer many of those questions. He wasn't sure whether we had the authority to do anything about it, once we found out how bad many of these federal mandates really are. CHAIR JAMES agreed, saying that many of these mandates still awaited court decision as to whether they fit under the Tenth Amendment rights of the states. She added though, that there were cases, such as highway funds, where the state could choose whether to accept them and the strings attached or not. She felt that this was an area where there should be a cost-benefit analysis done. Once we did this review, we could determine whether the costs of implementing these programs were really covered by the federal monies or not. Chair James said she suspected that, in many cases, they were not. She said these programs added to the bureaucratic growth by requiring additional employees to run them. She said many of these mandate issues would have to be settled in a court of law to determine their constitutionality. REPRESENTATIVE PORTER wasn't sure that those cases where there was a choice of whether or not to take federal monies to implement a program would fall under the review of this bill. Number 561 REPRESENTATIVE ROBINSON stated she agreed that the intent of this bill was excellent, but she shared many of the same concerns already expressed. She thought that with the new Congress, this bill might already be a mute point. She added she thought that it might just come down to the legislature doing a better analysis, before they accepted federal monies for a program. She also stated this was something the state legislature needed to look at, because in many cases they put money in to start a program, but do not do an analysis to see what the true costs are of that program. CHAIR JAMES thought that possibly, this bill might have more impact if it interceded in the formulation stage of mandates verses after the fact. She said she had discovered this in drafting her regulation reform bill. She asked for the committee's decision as to whether to pass this bill out of committee. Number 600 REPRESENTATIVE PORTER moved to pass CSHB 83(STA) to the next committee with attached fiscal notes and individual recommendations. He stated that as the chair of the judiciary committee, he would be willing to try and solve many of the above mentioned legal issues in that committee. CHAIR JAMES asked if there were an objection. Hearing none, the bill was moved out of committee. HSTA - 2/23/95 HB 130 - REGULATION ADOPTION PROCEDURES & REVIEW CHAIR JAMES announced that the next bill on the agenda was HB 130. She said that Bruce Campbell, legislative aide to bill sponsor Representative Pete Kelly, was there to make the presentation. Number 610 BRUCE CAMPBELL, Legislative Aide to Representative Pete Kelly, stated that Representative Kelly had already given the committee the sponsor overview of HB 130 at an earlier meeting, and that he would like to continue that discussion. He said he would present a draft committee substitute of the bill and urge passage of the bill. Mr. Campbell handed out a map of the current regulation process and the various proposals to reform that process for the subcommittee on regulation reform to review. He said this would allow them to see where each of the various regulation reform bills were performing a given task. This chart included an overview of HB 130, HB 105, HB 163, as well as suggestions from the public. He handed out copies of the proposed committee substitute for HB 130. MR. CAMPBELL stated that the regulation process was considered a quasi-legislative process. The initial catalyst for regulations is the legislature, who draft statutes that then require regulations to implement. The agencies then draft regulations on which they are required to hold public hearings and take input. This is the first time that the public actually gets to see the proposed regulation. He said that other than this, there is very little other guidance for the agencies from the Administrative Procedures Act. The regulation is then signed into law by the Lieutenant Governor. Currently, this role of the Lt. Governor is purely ministerial and mandatory. He said that HB 130 attempts to make this a less mandatory action of the Lieutenant. Governor by giving them the ability to return a draft regulation to an agency for rewrite. He thought the Lt. Governor was a unique position in that he is not beholden to the agencies, nor can he be fired by the Governor. Thus, the goal would be to give authority to the Lieutenant Governor to return bad regulations to the agencies for rewrite. He added that HB 130 would involve the legislature's Regulation Review Committee in the process, prior to a regulation becoming law, so that they may offer suggestions to make it better. He said the proposed committee substitute clarifies some of the language on page 3, to make the intent of the bill clearer. He said that in part E line 12 and 13, it clarifies that the Lieutenant Governor may return a regulation to the agencies. He said they added wording to clarify they meant that the Lieutenant Governor may do this at any time in the drafting process to save wasted efforts in writing and review of the regulation. He also said they added a best interest finding, which helped to clarify the type of reasons for which the Lieutenant Governor may return a regulation to the agency. He wanted to comment that the term "best interest" was a legal definition with precise meaning. It was intended to show that the Lieutenant Governor had broad oversight abilities and a statewide responsibility to the people of Alaska. On page 4, they have added a section to the Administrative Procedures Act, section 215, which require an agency to consider substantive and scientific testimony and to create a record of the public comment. They must show as a matter of public record, whether they made use of a particular piece of public comment. On page 4, line 16, they deleted a couple of steps from the original draft and required the agencies, following public comment, to calculate the cost of compliance and to show there is an economically feasible way to comply with this regulation. This also must be a part of the public record. He said this amounted to the changes in the proposed committee substitute for HB 130 and that he would be willing to answer any questions. TAPE 95-21, SIDE A Number 137 CHAIR JAMES asked if there were any questions or comments from the committee. She said it was a fine presentation. She asked if anyone in the audience had any questions or comments. Hearing none, she said this bill would be referred to the House State Affairs subcommittee on regulation reform with other similar bills for an overall review of the issue. Chair James said that to give the committee an update, she was still trying to get an accounting of the actual costs of regulations and how the legislature could try and save expenses with a regulation reform bill. She thought the subcommittee would meet after she had gotten these figures in another week or two. Number 177 HSTA - 2/23/95 HB 30 - SCHOOL DRESS CODES Chair James announced that HB 30 would be the next bill on the agenda. ELIZABETH ROBERTS, Legislative Aide to bill sponsor Representative Bettye Davis, said she wanted to point out that this bill was totally optional and not mandatory on the public. She stated that many educators believe school dress significantly influences student behavior and the adoption of an optional school dress code is a reasonable and economical way to provide some protection for students without having to take teachers away from their normal duties to act as monitors and policemen. She did not think this bill would affect rural students at all. Ms. Roberts said the idea behind this bill was that as gang behavior creeps up from the lower 48 states, our students become increasingly endangered. If an optional school uniform code can help to protect these students, it is an easy and economical way to do that. She said that every parent could choose to leave their child out of the program. Every school board could choose whether to adopt such a uniform dress code. She thought that probably the principal, the school board and the parents would get together to decide whether to adopt this program. She thought this bill would help to engender school spirit, as she said had been the case in Long Beach California who had such a policy. She thought that having this option available in state statutes would help to allow school boards and eventually single site management schools to make their own decision. CHAIR JAMES verified that parents could opt to not have their children participate in the program. MS. ROBERTS confirmed that this was the case. CHAIR JAMES said she failed to see the benefits for doing this then. MS. ROBERTS stated that most children were influenced by their peers and if most children were wearing the uniform, then she thought those children would want to also. She said this was also a very inexpensive way to dress children and take away some of the elitism of expensive clothing, such as the $200 tennis shoes. Number 236 REPRESENTATIVE PORTER asked if she was familiar with the experience of Long Beach, California's dress code. MS. ROBERTS said she did not know how it was working, just that they had done it. REPRESENTATIVE PORTER asked what had they done. MS. ROBERTS replied that they had made it mandatory, that students must wear school uniforms. REPRESENTATIVE ROBINSON stated that if there were no other questions, she would move to pass this bill out of committee. CHAIR JAMES commented that she had mixed feelings on this bill, but the part she did like, was that it would give schools another tool to manage their students. She said the problem was that even if students are dressing alike, they still do not look alike. She said she did not know whether she supported this bill or not, but that the mission of the State Affairs Committee was to determine whether there would be a statewide impact. She added that she had talked to the Chair of the Health Education and Social Services committee, who agreed to explore some of these deeper issues there. REPRESENTATIVE PORTER thought that this would be an interesting discussion in the HESS Committee and added that it was his understanding that schools in the Anchorage area could already ban the wearing of gang colors. He said that to the extent this bill was trying to deal with the issue of gangs, there was one tool out there already. MS. ROBERTS responded that she knew that East High School in Anchorage had banned the wearing of L.A. Raiders jackets, but that she did not know if they had gone further. REPRESENTATIVE PORTER replied that as he understood it, they did have the ability though. He said the benefit of this approach was that it was optional, and did allow for individual schools to make that decision for themselves. Number 322 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN stated he was going to vote against this bill, although he did not have a problem with the banning of individual colors. He said that at least according to Representative Porter, Anchorage schools already had this ability, and so he saw this as an unfunded state mandate on the municipalities. REPRESENTATIVE ROBINSON stated she needed to get a better sense of what tool this bill would be actually giving to schools and that she had mixed feelings about this bill. She said she would like to look into seeing how schools could empower students in the decision making process. CHAIR JAMES agreed, saying this why she had talked with the Chair of the HESS Committee because, at this point, all they could do was to insert their own personal feelings and not fact. Thus, she was willing to pass it to the HESS Committee to explore these educational issues more thoroughly. REPRESENTATIVE PORTER moved to pass HB 30 to the next committee with individual recommendations, and a zero fiscal note. CHAIR JAMES asked if there was an objection. Representative Ogan objected. A roll call vote was taken. Representatives Willis, Robinson, Porter, and James voted in favor of moving the bill. Representative Ogan voted against moving the bill. So the bill was passed from committee. CHAIR JAMES adjourned the meeting at 10:05 a.m.