Legislature(2003 - 2004)

04/17/2003 08:12 AM STA

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
                    ALASKA STATE LEGISLATURE                                                                                  
             HOUSE STATE AFFAIRS STANDING COMMITTEE                                                                           
                         April 17, 2003                                                                                         
                           8:12 a.m.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Representative Bruce Weyhrauch, Chair                                                                                           
Representative Jim Holm, Vice Chair                                                                                             
Representative Bob Lynn                                                                                                         
Representative Paul Seaton                                                                                                      
Representative Ethan Berkowitz                                                                                                  
Representative Max Gruenberg                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Representative Nancy Dahlstrom                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 248                                                                                                              
"An Act  relating to the  annual salary of the  chief procurement                                                               
officer; and providing for an effective date."                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
     - MOVED HB 248 OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 243                                                                                                              
"An Act establishing state  agency program performance management                                                               
and  audit  powers  in  the   Office  of  the  Governor  for  the                                                               
evaluation  of agency  programs; and  providing for  an effective                                                               
date."                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
     - HEARD AND HELD                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 134                                                                                                              
"An Act authorizing  the Department of Corrections  to enter into                                                               
agreements  with  municipalities  for   new  or  expanded  public                                                               
correctional facilities in the Fairbanks  North Star Borough, the                                                               
Matanuska-Susitna  Borough,  Bethel,   and  the  Municipality  of                                                               
Anchorage."                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     - MOVED CSHB 134(STA) OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 266                                                                                                              
"An Act relating to elections,  questioned ballots and questioned                                                               
voters,  voter  registration,  training  of  election  officials,                                                               
preparation   of   election  materials,   voter   identification,                                                               
absentee voting, counting ballots,  and the primary election; and                                                               
providing for an effective date."                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     - HEARD AND HELD                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 149                                                                                                              
"An  Act requiring  nonprofit corporations  under the  Alaska Net                                                               
Income  Tax  Act  to  provide prior  public  notice  of  lobbying                                                               
expenditures  and an  annual report  of lobbying  expenditures to                                                               
the  Department of  Revenue; providing  for a  civil penalty  for                                                               
failure to  provide the  notice; and  providing for  an effective                                                               
date."                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
     - BILL HEARING POSTPONED TO 4/24/03                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 215                                                                                                              
"An Act  repealing statutes  that relate to  art works  in public                                                               
buildings and  facilities and  that require  a set  percentage of                                                               
construction costs to be spent on art."                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
     - BILL HEARING POSTPONED TO 4/24/03                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
PREVIOUS ACTION                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
BILL: HB 248                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE:SALARY OF CHIEF PROCUREMENT OFFICER                                                                                 
SPONSOR(S): RLS BY REQUEST OF THE GOVERNOR                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Jrn-Date   Jrn-Page                     Action                                                                                  
04/04/03     0786       (H)        READ THE FIRST TIME -                                                                        
                                   REFERRALS                                                                                    
04/04/03     0786       (H)        STA                                                                                          
04/04/03     0786       (H)        FN1: ZERO(ADM)                                                                               
04/04/03     0786       (H)        GOVERNOR'S TRANSMITTAL LETTER                                                                
04/15/03                (H)        STA AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 102                                                                   
04/15/03                (H)        Heard & Held                                                                                 
04/15/03                (H)        MINUTE(STA)                                                                                  
04/17/03                (H)        STA AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 102                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
BILL: HB 243                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE:EVALUATION OF AGENCY PROGRAMS                                                                                       
SPONSOR(S): RLS BY REQUEST OF THE GOVERNOR                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Jrn-Date   Jrn-Page                     Action                                                                                  
04/04/03     0769       (H)        READ THE FIRST TIME -                                                                        
                                   REFERRALS                                                                                    
04/04/03     0769       (H)        STA, FIN                                                                                     
04/04/03     0770       (H)        FN1: ZERO(GOV)                                                                               
04/04/03     0770       (H)        GOVERNOR'S TRANSMITTAL LETTER                                                                
04/10/03                (H)        FIN AT 1:30 PM HOUSE FINANCE                                                                 
                                   519                                                                                          
04/10/03                (H)        Mtg Postponed Unitl Adjnmt of                                                                
                                   F/Session                                                                                    
04/15/03                (H)        STA AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 102                                                                   
04/15/03                (H)        Heard & Held                                                                                 
                                   MINUTE(STA)                                                                                  
04/17/03                (H)        STA AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 102                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
BILL: HB 134                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE:CORRECTIONAL FACILITY EXPANSION                                                                                     
SPONSOR(S): REPRESENTATIVE(S)STOLTZE                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Jrn-Date   Jrn-Page                     Action                                                                                  
02/26/03     0306       (H)        READ THE FIRST TIME -                                                                        
                                   REFERRALS                                                                                    
02/26/03     0306       (H)        STA, FIN                                                                                     
03/13/03                (H)        STA AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 102                                                                   
03/13/03                (H)        Scheduled But Not Heard                                                                      
04/01/03                (H)        STA AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 102                                                                   
04/01/03                (H)        Heard & Held                                                                                 
                                   MINUTE(STA)                                                                                  
04/15/03     0996       (H)        COSPONSOR(S): SEATON                                                                         
04/15/03                (H)        STA AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 102                                                                   
04/15/03                (H)        Heard & Held                                                                                 
                                   MINUTE(STA)                                                                                  
04/17/03                (H)        STA AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 102                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
BILL: HB 266                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE:ELECTIONS                                                                                                           
SPONSOR(S): RLS BY REQUEST OF THE GOVERNOR                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Jrn-Date   Jrn-Page                     Action                                                                                  
04/14/03     0965       (H)        READ THE FIRST TIME -                                                                        
                                   REFERRALS                                                                                    
04/14/03     0965       (H)        STA, FIN                                                                                     
04/14/03     0965       (H)        FN1: ZERO(GOV)                                                                               
04/14/03     0965       (H)        FN2: ZERO(ADM)                                                                               
04/14/03     0965       (H)        GOVERNOR'S TRANSMITTAL LETTER                                                                
04/15/03                (H)        STA AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 102                                                                   
04/15/03                (H)        Scheduled But Not Heard                                                                      
04/17/03                (H)        STA AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 102                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
WITNESS REGISTER                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
DAN SPENCER, Director                                                                                                           
Administrative Services                                                                                                         
Department of Administration (DOA)                                                                                              
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified on behalf of DOA during the                                                                      
hearing on HB 248.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
JAY HOGAN, Deputy Director                                                                                                      
Office of Management & Budget (OMB)                                                                                             
Office of the Governor                                                                                                          
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified on behalf of the administration                                                                  
to answer questions during the hearing on HB 243.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
PAT DAVIDSON, Legislative Auditor                                                                                               
Division of Legislative Audit                                                                                                   
Alaska State Legislature                                                                                                        
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified on behalf of the division during                                                                 
the hearing on HB 243.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
JERRY BURNETT, Director                                                                                                         
Division of Administrative Services                                                                                             
Department of Corrections (DOC)                                                                                                 
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Answered questions regarding a new fiscal                                                                  
note from DOC and a proposed committee substitute (CS), during                                                                  
the hearing on HB 134.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE BILL STOLTZE                                                                                                     
Alaska State Legislature                                                                                                        
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified as sponsor of HB 134.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
JAMES BALDWIN, Assistant Attorney General                                                                                       
Governmental Affairs Section                                                                                                    
Civil Division (Juneau)                                                                                                         
Department of Law (DOL)                                                                                                         
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Answered questions during the hearing on HB
243.                                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
LAURA GLAISER, Director                                                                                                         
Division of Elections                                                                                                           
Office of the Lieutenant Governor                                                                                               
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:   Testified on behalf of  the division during                                                               
the hearing on HB 266.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
SARAH FELIX, Assistant Attorney General                                                                                         
Civil Division (Juneau)                                                                                                         
Department of Law (DOL)                                                                                                         
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Answered questions  during the hearing on HB
266.                                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
JUSTIN ROBERTS, Staff                                                                                                           
to Representative Gruenberg                                                                                                     
Alaska State Legislature                                                                                                        
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified on HB 266.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
ACTION NARRATIVE                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
TAPE 03-41, SIDE A                                                                                                            
Number 0001                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  BRUCE WEYHRAUCH  called the  House State  Affairs Standing                                                             
Committee meeting  to order at  8:12 a.m.   Representatives Holm,                                                               
Seaton,  Berkowitz, and  Weyhrauch were  present at  the call  to                                                               
order.    Representatives  Lynn  and  Gruenberg  arrived  as  the                                                               
meeting was in progress.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
[The recording began  briefly, was paused, then began  again.  No                                                               
minutes were lost.]                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
HB 248-SALARY OF CHIEF PROCUREMENT OFFICER                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Number 0030                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR WEYHRAUCH  announced that the  first order of  business was                                                               
HOUSE BILL NO. 248, "An Act  relating to the annual salary of the                                                               
chief procurement officer; and providing for an effective date."                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Number 0090                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
DAN  SPENCER, Director,  Administrative  Services, Department  of                                                               
Administration (DOA), referred to the  new fiscal note [from DOA,                                                               
dated  4/16/03,  included in  the  committee  packet], which  was                                                               
provided to  the committee  in response to  a request  from Chair                                                               
Weyhrauch  [during the  House  State  Affairs Standing  Committee                                                               
meeting  on  April 15,  2003].    He  pointed to  the  [analysis]                                                               
portion of the  fiscal note, where it shows an  annual savings of                                                               
approximately $8,200  "at the  current salary  ranges of  each of                                                               
the people involved."                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SEATON  indicated the  range [26] of  the director                                                               
"going to  zero."  He  asked if  [the legislature] needs  to take                                                               
some action to "zero that out" of the Budget Review Unit (BRU).                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MR. SPENCER answered no.  He  explained, "What we have done is we                                                               
have re-classed that position to  this deputy director position."                                                               
In response to a follow-up  question by Representative Seaton, he                                                               
confirmed  that  because of  the  reclassification,  there is  no                                                               
[position] to be filled.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Number 0202                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BERKOWITZ moved  to  amend the  fiscal note  such                                                               
that the decrement  is indicated in the  relevant portion instead                                                               
of simply in the analysis.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
MR.  SPENCER stated  that the  reality is  that "this  particular                                                               
division  is getting  the charge  to do  a lot  more" within  its                                                               
existing  budget.   He mentioned  centralizing procurement.   For                                                               
example, he  indicated that  the budget  reflects that  there are                                                               
$1.5 million-worth of savings that  [the division] has to find in                                                               
leasing,  as well  as probably  "another couple  million dollars"                                                               
that the  division will  have for  all the  procurement officers.                                                               
He  stated  that although  virtually  all  of the  Department  of                                                               
Administration  has taken  reductions, it  has "tried  not to  do                                                               
that in  this particular  division because,  in fact,  their work                                                               
load is going  to go up here  over the next couple  of years, and                                                               
that wouldn't help us very much in that regard."                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BERKOWITZ stated  that it  seems to  him that  if                                                               
there's  a decrement  based on  the actions  [the administration]                                                               
takes, it ought  to be recognized.  He  added, "If, subsequently,                                                               
the agency, or any agency,  seeks additional funds, that ought to                                                               
go under the budget hopper, along with everything else."                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
MR.  SPENCER  explained  that  when  "we"  did  the  budget,  the                                                               
governor  had already  decided that  "we  were going  to go  this                                                               
route," which  he said is one  of the reasons that  the budget is                                                               
the way it is today, is  [because] we anticipated this savings in                                                               
there already."                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BERKOWITZ  asked if  there  are  any other  areas                                                               
where  Mr.  Spencer  is  aware   of  where  [Governor  Murkowski]                                                               
incorporated cuts, prior to legislative approval.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
MR. SPENCER clarified that no  legislative approval was needed to                                                               
make  the adjustment  that resulted  in the  salary savings.   In                                                               
response to  a follow-up comment by  Representative Berkowitz, he                                                               
stated the following:                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
     We need legislative approval on  this particular one to                                                                    
     change  the  salary  range  of  the  chief  procurement                                                                    
     officer; but in terms  of the administrative assignment                                                                    
     of positions and the salary  ranges of other positions,                                                                    
     [it] is an administrative  action, and the savings that                                                                    
     result from those  - we do these every day.   These are                                                                    
     not  situations where  an appropriation's  required for                                                                    
     us to  adjust the salary ranges,  realize some savings,                                                                    
     and  apply   that  savings  to   other  areas   of  our                                                                    
     operations.  This is [a] normal course of business.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BERKOWITZ  stated  that  the savings  has  to  be                                                               
within the  BRU, and if  it's not, and  there's a change  in what                                                               
the BRU  is, that  savings ought  to be  returned to  the general                                                               
fund, where it's subject to appropriation by the legislature.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
MR. SPENCER noted:  "This is  a savings in this particular salary                                                               
area,  but we're  going to  be  doing other  things within  this.                                                               
This  is  part  of  our  normal  course  of  administering  these                                                               
programs, where  we can take this  savings and apply it  to those                                                               
other areas, without asking for additional money."                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR WEYHRAUCH said he thinks  that the general discussion comes                                                               
up in a  lot of fiscal notes  and is an issue to  be sensitive to                                                               
when addressing fiscal notes.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
[The motion to amend the fiscal note was not addressed further.]                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Number 0532                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SEATON  moved to  report HB  248 out  of committee                                                               
with  individual  recommendations  and  the  accompanying  fiscal                                                               
notes.                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BERKOWITZ  objected  for  purposes  of  making  a                                                               
comment.  He continued as follows:                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
     This is  another example of special  interests, or very                                                                    
     specific legislation, that I  think is somewhat onerous                                                                    
     in the  legislative process, and I  would encourage the                                                                    
     administration to  seek consolidation of these  kind of                                                                    
     job-related bills, so we don't get them piece-meal.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE BERKOWITZ withdrew his objection.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
There being no further objection, HB  248 was reported out of the                                                               
House State Affairs Standing Committee.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
HB 243-EVALUATION OF AGENCY PROGRAMS                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Number 0610                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR WEYHRAUCH  announced that  the next  order of  business was                                                               
HOUSE BILL  NO. 243,  "An Act  establishing state  agency program                                                               
performance  management and  audit powers  in the  Office of  the                                                               
Governor  for the  evaluation of  agency programs;  and providing                                                               
for an effective date."                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Number 0722                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  SEATON  moved  to adopt  the  proposed  committee                                                               
substitute  (CS) for  HB  243,  Version 23-GH1138\D,  Lauterbach,                                                               
4/16/03, as  a work draft.   There being no objection,  Version D                                                               
was before the committee.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Number 0768                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
JAY HOGAN, Deputy Director, Office  of Management & Budget (OMB),                                                               
Office  of the  Governor,  in  response to  a  question by  Chair                                                               
Weyhrauch, said  he had not  received a letter from  Jim Baldwin,                                                               
but  he  added that  he  thought  it  had  come directly  to  the                                                               
committee.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
[The committee took an at-ease from 8:22 a.m. to 8:23 a.m.]                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR WEYHRAUCH  noted that the  committee discussion  during the                                                               
previous hearing  on HB  243, [April  15, 2003],  had to  do with                                                               
concerns over Section 3 of  [the original bill version, beginning                                                               
on page 1, line 14, which read as follows]:                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     *Sec.3. AS 44.19 is amended by adding a new section to                                                                   
     read:                                                                                                                      
          Sec.44.19.147. Internal audit records.  The                                                                         
     office  shall keep  a complete  file of  internal audit                                                                    
     reports  resulting  from   audits  conducted  under  AS                                                                    
     44.19.145(a),  and  a  complete file  of  the  internal                                                                    
     audit   work  papers   and  other   related  supportive                                                                    
     material.    Internal  audit   work  papers  and  other                                                                    
     related  supportive  material   are  confidential,  and                                                                    
     internal audit reports  are confidential until released                                                                    
     by the governor.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR WEYHRAUCH  said that the  concern was in regard  to whether                                                               
the new  provision would in  any way impede the  legislature from                                                               
obtaining  records, through  its  own audit  function, that  were                                                               
prepared by the executive branch.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Number 0820                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
PAT  DAVIDSON,  Legislative   Auditor,  Division  of  Legislative                                                               
Audit,  Alaska State  Legislature,  testifying on  behalf of  the                                                               
division, noted that she had  read the additional language [added                                                               
to Section 3 of Version D, on  page 2, beginning on line 5, which                                                               
read as follows]:                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     However, the  legislative audit division has  the right                                                                    
     to  access  these  confidential  reports,  papers,  and                                                                    
     other  material in  the  same manner  and  to the  same                                                                    
     extent  as provided  in AS  24.20.271(6) for  access by                                                                    
     the   division  to   confidential  material   of  state                                                                    
     agencies.     The  legislative  audit   division  shall                                                                    
     maintain  the confidentiality  of any  reports, papers,                                                                    
     or  other materials  obtained from  the  office in  the                                                                    
     same   manner  as   the   legislative  audit   division                                                                    
     maintains  the  confidentiality of  other  confidential                                                                    
     material to  which the  legislative audit  division has                                                                    
     access under AS 24.20.271(6).                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
MS. DAVIDSON  stated that her  concern as a  practitioner, rather                                                               
than  as an  attorney,  is  in regard  to  adding specificity  of                                                               
language,  which could  potentially raise  questions or  concerns                                                               
about all the other confidential  information that [the division]                                                               
is allowed to see "by that statute."  She clarified as follows:                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
     While I  think that,  ultimately, we  would be  able to                                                                    
     get  to  all  the   confidential  information  that  we                                                                    
     already can  [get to], I'm concerned  ... [that] adding                                                                    
     this  type of  language  to this  specific issue  might                                                                    
     cause  us difficulties  or  delays,  by other  agencies                                                                    
     saying,  "Well, you  don't have  this  language and  my                                                                    
     stuff is confidential, so I  can't let you look at it."                                                                    
     And that would be my  concern about adding that type of                                                                    
     language.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  WEYHRAUCH asked  if Ms.  Davidson's first  concern was  in                                                               
regard to  the first  sentence of  the added  language, beginning                                                               
with the word "However" [on page 2, line 5, of Version D].                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
MS. DAVIDSON  concurred.  She added  that also of concern  is the                                                               
language in  the following sentence,  [beginning on page  2, line                                                               
9, of Version D].  She continued:                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     We are covered  by legislative ethics Act,  and that is                                                                    
     what   covers   the   penalties  for   disclosing   any                                                                    
     confidential  information; so,  we're already  bound by                                                                    
     not revealing  any confidential information,  and we've                                                                    
     had  the procedures  in  place to  protect  that.   So,                                                                    
     again, I don't think the  language adds anything to ...                                                                    
     either our operations  or our access, and  I would only                                                                    
     be  concerned about  any  potential  barriers it  might                                                                    
     create for us.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  WEYHRAUCH  commented that  the  idea  had been  to  remove                                                               
barriers, not to create them.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Number 1065                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MR.  HOGAN,  in  response  to  a  question  by  Chair  Weyhrauch,                                                               
confirmed that  he had been present  for the prior meeting  on HB
243,  but only  during the  discussion of  the fiscal  note.   He                                                               
continued as follows:                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
     When   we  responded   to  the   Department  of   Law's                                                                    
     suggestion  that  if  we were  resurrecting  the  audit                                                                    
     function, we might want to  consider making the working                                                                    
     papers  confidential  along  the lines  of  legislative                                                                    
     audit,  in   the  process  of  actually   drafting  the                                                                    
     legislation, we discovered that  although the state had                                                                    
     had an ... active internal  audit function for a number                                                                    
     of  years -  perhaps going  back to  statehood -  there                                                                    
     never was  any statutory  authority to do  that.   As a                                                                    
     result,  Section 1  would put  in the  executive budget                                                                    
     Act  a  responsibility on  OMB  to  become involved  in                                                                    
     performance  budgeting,   performance  auditing,  [and]                                                                    
     performance  measurement  -  an  authority  we  do  not                                                                    
     specifically have, but have used anyway.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
     Then, in  ... Section  2, we specifically  included the                                                                    
     authority  to perform  internal audits.   And  then ...                                                                    
     [Section   3],  the   one   that's   been  most   under                                                                    
     discussion,    the   provision    that   mirrors    the                                                                    
     legislature's grant of  authority to legislative audit,                                                                    
     ...  that  is [intended]  to  keep  the working  papers                                                                    
     confidential  -  not  the  reports,  per  se,  but  the                                                                    
     working papers.  The reason  being that sometimes, some                                                                    
     matters are  discussed that are  resolved in  the audit                                                                    
     process, and  the public discussion  of them  after ...                                                                    
     might in  fact hinder  the accomplishment of  what goes                                                                    
     on, particularly when it  relates to personnel matters.                                                                    
     All  of the  records [relating  to] personnel  matters,                                                                    
     the state chooses to keep in confidence.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Number 1217                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  SEATON referred  to a  [two-page letter  from the                                                               
Office  of  the  Attorney  General, prepared  by  James  Baldwin,                                                               
Assistant Attorney  General, Department  of Law, included  in the                                                               
committee  packet].     He  suggested  that   the  discussion  is                                                               
basically  about  executive  privilege,  and he  asked,  "Are  we                                                               
stepping further  into an area  where this information  would not                                                               
be available to [the Division of] Legislative Audit?"                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
MR.  HOGAN explained  [the  administration's] concerns  regarding                                                               
going back into the audit business as follows:                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
     There are  things that are  in the nature  of personnel                                                                    
     complaints that come up, that  we might be asked by the                                                                    
     governor  to look  into.   Personnel matters,  records,                                                                    
     and  files  are,  by  state  law,  confidential.    The                                                                    
     discussion of  those - the  decisions made, based  on a                                                                    
     personnel case  - are perhaps better  left undisclosed,                                                                    
     publicly, because the solution may  be that a person or                                                                    
     persons  cease  to be  employees  of  the state.    So,                                                                    
     that's really  our interest in  this, and it is  not to                                                                    
     keep matters  from the  public, it  is to  realize that                                                                    
     we're going to get  into sticky situations that involve                                                                    
     other  matters that  are held  in  confidence by  state                                                                    
     law.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SEATON responded  that he has no  problem with the                                                               
issue  of confidentiality.   He  referred  to the  middle of  the                                                               
second paragraph  in Mr. Baldwin's  letter, which  read [original                                                               
punctuation provided]:                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
     It  is  likely  that  the preliminary  reports  of  the                                                                    
     auditors are  privileged because  the auditors  will be                                                                    
     advising the governor on matters  of policy which would                                                                    
     be part of the executive decision-making process.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SEATON  clarified that  he wants  to know  if that                                                               
means that the  legislative auditors will be  excluded from "this                                                               
material  by  this  legal  opinion," because  it's  a  matter  of                                                               
privilege and not  a matter of confidentiality,  which they would                                                               
be adhering to.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MR. HOGAN  pointed out that Mr.  Baldwin goes on [in  the letter]                                                               
to  say that  a  court case  will be  required  to determine  the                                                               
limits of  that.  He stated  that he honestly does  not know what                                                               
the outcome  of that would  be.  He opined  that, as a  matter of                                                               
sensitivity on  the part of  the governor's office,  the governor                                                               
might like some time to  "contemplate something" before he or she                                                               
decides to take action, much  as the legislative auditor prepares                                                               
a confidential  preliminary report,  which is distributed  to the                                                               
agencies, and then to the  committee for a full discussion before                                                               
it is  released.  He  said that  the administration tried  [in HB
243] to copy the system that exists in the legislature.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Number 1475                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SEATON stated that he  doesn't have a problem with                                                               
what [the  administration] is attempting  in the bill.   He again                                                               
mentioned the  [letter from the  Office of the  Attorney General]                                                               
and continued as follows:                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
     I'm wondering whether that  interpretation is that this                                                                    
     would  be  a  ...   matter  of  privilege  between  the                                                                    
     governor and  policy makers,  and whether  that's going                                                                    
     to be  excluded from the ...  [Division of] Legislative                                                                    
     Audit's ability  to access  that material,  even though                                                                    
     they will hold it all in confidence.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
MR.  HOGAN responded,  "That's obviously  what they're  concerned                                                               
about, but  I don't know  whether that circumstance  would really                                                               
come up."                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SEATON asked, "Does  [the Division of] Legislative                                                               
Audit have a problem with this?"                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
MS. DAVIDSON said she noted a  couple of things while reading the                                                               
letter from  [the Office  of the Attorney  General]:   First, Mr.                                                               
Baldwin writes about the preliminary  report being privileged; he                                                               
doesn't  have   anything  to  say   about  the   working  papers.                                                               
Typically, she said, if [the  division] is trying to utilize work                                                               
done by other  auditors, it is more interested in  what is in the                                                               
working papers,  rather than  "their judgments  on how  to report                                                               
that information."   She clarified  that it  is less of  an issue                                                               
for her that  "it doesn't so much speak to  the working papers as                                                               
to the report."   Second, "in terms of it  being privileged," Ms.                                                               
Davidson said that it probably would  be an issue that would have                                                               
to be taken up by the  court.  Regarding the language in [Version                                                               
D] addressing  confidentiality, she stated that  she doesn't know                                                               
how  that would  weigh against  an assertion  of privilege.   She                                                               
added, "I  don't know that  they're necessarily  linked together.                                                               
But  as I  say, I'm  more concerned  about having  access to  the                                                               
working papers ...."                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MS.  DAVIDSON,  in  response  to  a  question  by  Representative                                                               
Seaton, confirmed that she is  more comfortable with the language                                                               
in the original bill than that in the proposed Version D.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Number 1639                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SEATON  [made a motion to  rescind the committee's                                                               
action  in  adopting]  the proposed  committee  substitute  (CS),                                                               
Version 23-GH1138\D, Lauterbach, 4/16/03, as a work draft.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR WEYHRAUCH asked if there was any objection.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BERKOWITZ  remarked  that  the  whole  notion  of                                                               
keeping  things confidential  in government  gives him  a lot  of                                                               
pause.   He stated  that it  smacks of secrecy.   He  opined that                                                               
there needs  to be a better  way of insuring that  the public has                                                               
access to information  that's gathered.  He stated  that when the                                                               
executive or legislative  branch makes decisions, it  should be a                                                               
transparent process.   He  said that he  understands the  need to                                                               
protect  the  confidentiality  that's related  to  personnel,  or                                                               
security  issues, or  other  reasons  enumerated regarding  going                                                               
into   executive  session;   however,  absent   those  kinds   of                                                               
compelling   reasons,    "it   all   should   be    out   there."                                                               
Representative  Berkowitz  said,   "The  confidentiality  in  the                                                               
version that  we're reverting  to seems far  beyond that  kind of                                                               
transparency."                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  WEYHRAUCH posited  that  the proposed  Version D  provides                                                               
more restrictions than the original bill.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE BERKOWITZ  asked, "Are  there any  other provision                                                               
of law  ... that  would keep ...  the work  product confidential,                                                               
without specifying it here?"                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. HOGAN  answered that he  has never looked into  that question                                                               
personally,  but   he  would  suspect  that   [the  Division  of]                                                               
Legislative Audit  is the  only agency  that has  that particular                                                               
language  on  the  statutes,  "and   this  would  be  the  second                                                               
occurrence of it."                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE BERKOWITZ stated the following:                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
     It seems  to me  though -  and ...  I haven't  read the                                                                    
     cases  based   on  Mr.   Baldwin's  opinion,   and  his                                                                    
     reference  to the  budget report  case -  that ...  the                                                                    
     work of the  auditors just on its own  would be subject                                                                    
     to the deliberative process if  the secrecy need or the                                                                    
     confidentiality need  arose.   And we wouldn't  need to                                                                    
     specify it in statute again.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
MR. HOGAN responded  that he wouldn't assume that  it would apply                                                               
to  the  budget.    He  stated   that  he  thinks  "audit"  is  a                                                               
"significant term  of art that will  have its own format  and own                                                               
composition"; therefore,  he said he  could not see how  it would                                                               
relate to budget papers.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BERKOWITZ asked,  "Aside  from personnel  issues,                                                               
what ... in auditing would require confidentiality?"                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Number 1855                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR   WEYHRAUCH  suggested,   "Things   like  ...   proprietary                                                               
information on contracts?"                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BERKOWITZ replied:   "That  can be  redacted. ...                                                               
Again,  the  proprietary  information  is  protected  [by]  other                                                               
provision in law."                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR WEYHRAUCH said that the  auditors would know best what kind                                                               
of  things should  be confidential.    He asked  Ms. Davidson  to                                                               
comment.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
MS. DAVIDSON gave  an example of auditing the  Division of Family                                                               
and  Youth  Services  (DFYS),  which she  said  the  Division  of                                                               
Legislative Audit  has been involved with  quite a bit.   Most of                                                               
that information is confidential, she noted.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BERKOWITZ interjected  that  it  is protected  by                                                               
court records, though.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
MS. DAVIDSON  said that the  division would typically  be looking                                                               
at  [DFYS's] files,  and  those  are confidential  by  law.   She                                                               
explained:                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     When  the Division  of Legislative  Audit prepares  the                                                                    
     report for  the [Joint Committee on  Legislative Budget                                                                    
     and  Audit] to  review, we  have to  write a  report so                                                                    
     that it is available for  public release.  We don't put                                                                    
     that  information  in.    We  have  to  write  it  very                                                                    
     carefully.   It's  a process  of making  sure that  the                                                                    
     agency has  a look  at it and  makes sure  that there's                                                                    
     nothing in there that we're not supposed to be saying.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MS.  DAVIDSON  related  experiences where  agencies  have  wanted                                                               
certain information not to be  disclosed, and she said that there                                                               
has "just  generally been  discussions about it."   She  told the                                                               
committee that  she has been  with the  division for a  number of                                                               
years, has  worked as legislative  auditor for  approximately the                                                               
last five  years, and  has been privy  to information  for longer                                                               
than  that, and  she  doesn't know  of a  case  where the  [Joint                                                               
Committee on  Legislative Budget  and Audit]  has not  released a                                                               
report [to  the] public.  She  noted that [that committee]  has a                                                               
long history  of allowing the  reports produced by  [the Division                                                               
of Legislative Audit] to go forward.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MS. DAVIDSON, in response to  a question by Chair Weyhrauch, said                                                               
that [the  division] also  does analysis  of individuals  who may                                                               
participate  in drug  testing  programs.   She  indicated a  most                                                               
recent audit  on Medicaid to  evaluate how well the  controls are                                                               
working,  which  she said  requires  getting  down to  individual                                                               
files.  She said, "We need the  details to do the work, but those                                                               
are not  the issues that  we're reporting on; we're  reporting on                                                               
the  systems   and  whether  the  state   agency  is  functioning                                                               
properly."   She explained that  [the division] needs to  be able                                                               
to look at the underlying transactions  in order to be able to do                                                               
that evaluation.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Number 2030                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE BERKOWITZ summarized that  Ms. Davidson was saying                                                               
that [the division] deals with  confidential areas when the issue                                                               
is  in regard  to  personnel  or medical  records,  or when  it's                                                               
proprietary -  all of  which he  said seem to  him to  have other                                                               
protections elsewhere in the law -  and when the agency asks that                                                               
the information  not be  released, which he  said raises  a flag.                                                               
He explained  that he does  not know  when an agency  can protect                                                               
its internal workings  just by saying, "Please  don't tell people                                                               
this is what we're doing."                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
MS. DAVIDSON responded as follows:                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
     Without trying  to disclose anything  that I  had privy                                                                    
     to in executive session, there  are issues that come up                                                                    
     and whether  or not  disclosure of  certain information                                                                    
     would be detrimental to the  financial condition of the                                                                    
     state.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BERKOWITZ  asked if  that  would  be things  like                                                               
pending court cases and investment decisions, for example.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
MS.  DAVIDSON  replied,  "In  that  general  topic  area."    She                                                               
reiterated that  the [Joint Committee  on Legislative  Budget and                                                               
Audit] has the  history [of allowing the reports  produced by the                                                               
Division of Legislative Audit to  go forward] since, she guessed,                                                               
statehood.  She  emphasized that the division  writes the reports                                                               
so that  they are  available for public  disclosure -  it doesn't                                                               
put any legally confidential material in the reports.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Number 2133                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  SEATON  said, "I'd  just  like  to move  HB  243,                                                               
Version A, back before us."                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR WEYHRAUCH  said:  "Version A  is before us.   Are there any                                                               
amendments, or any further discussion of Version A?"                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Number 2157                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BERKOWITZ  suggested   the  following  conceptual                                                               
amendment:                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     Page 2, line 4, after "confidential"                                                                                       
         Insert "only to the extent permitted by other                                                                          
     provisions of law"                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
MR.  HOGAN,  in  response  to  Chair  Weyhrauch's  invitation  to                                                               
comment, stated that  he would prefer to reserve  his comments to                                                               
"see what Mr. Baldwin might think of that."                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE BERKOWITZ stated for the  record - and in case Mr.                                                               
Baldwin is brought into the conversation  - that he does not want                                                               
HB   243   to   become   the  basis   for   new   assertions   of                                                               
confidentiality.  He  said that he is not sure  that the language                                                               
he suggested is  the appropriate language, and he  added that "it                                                               
certainly doesn't go  to the next line, which  raises another set                                                               
of issues."                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE   SEATON  asked   if  work   papers  and   related                                                               
supportive materials  in the  administration are  confidential at                                                               
this point in time.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
MR. HOGAN responded that he doesn't know.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR WEYHRAUCH announced  that HB 243 would he  held until later                                                               
in the  meeting, at which  time Mr.  Baldwin may be  available by                                                               
phone to offer comments.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
HB 134-CORRECTIONAL FACILITY EXPANSION                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Number 2309                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR WEYHRAUCH  announced that  the next  order of  business was                                                               
HOUSE  BILL  NO.  134,  "An Act  authorizing  the  Department  of                                                               
Corrections to enter into agreements  with municipalities for new                                                               
or  expanded  public  correctional facilities  in  the  Fairbanks                                                               
North Star  Borough, the  Matanuska-Susitna Borough,  Bethel, and                                                               
the Municipality of Anchorage."                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  WEYHRAUCH noted  that  [in committee  packets]  was a  new                                                               
fiscal note  from the Department  of Corrections,  dated 4/16/03,                                                               
3:36  p.m., as  well  as a  proposed  committee substitute  (CS),                                                               
Version 23-LS0563\H, Luckhaupt, 4/15/03.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Number 2365                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
JERRY  BURNETT, Director,  Division  of Administrative  Services,                                                               
Department of  Corrections (DOC), clarified that  Chair Weyhrauch                                                               
had read  the revision date of  the fiscal note in  the committee                                                               
packet.  The date at the  bottom right read "4/17/03 7:07 AM", he                                                               
noted.                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
MR. BURNETT  referred to a  portion of the sectional  analysis of                                                               
the new fiscal note, regarding  the Seward 400-bed expansion, and                                                               
noted  that  it  shows  a   fully  allocated  cost  estimated  at                                                               
$16,317,200  if [the  facility is  fully  operational in]  fiscal                                                               
year  (FY) 2010.   He  told the  committee that  the face  of the                                                               
fiscal note  remains unchanged,  with a  total operating  cost of                                                               
$47 million.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. BURNETT  said, "I'd point out  in the analysis that  that $47                                                               
million is  just a little over  $5 million greater than  our cost                                                               
to send the equivalent number of prisoners to Arizona."                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Number 2426                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE   BILL   STOLTZE,    Alaska   State   Legislature,                                                               
testifying  as sponsor,  stated  that he  thinks  that the  major                                                               
changes discussed  by the committee  [in the previous  hearing on                                                               
HB 134,  April 15, 2003]  are reflected in  Version H and  in the                                                               
fiscal  note.    He  said   that  he  appreciates  Representative                                                               
Seaton's efforts  in working  with DOC  to address  the projected                                                               
needs of  Seward [through  an amendment  adopted at  the previous                                                               
hearing and  incorporated into  Version H],  which he  opined has                                                               
resulted in an improvement to the bill.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Number 2451                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  HOLM  moved  [to adopt]  the  proposed  committee                                                               
substitute (CS), Version  23-LS0563\H, [as a work  draft].  There                                                               
being no objection, Version H was before the committee.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HOLM made the following comment:                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
     You showed  the Arizona component,  you don't do  it in                                                                    
     the fiscal note,  but I appreciate the  idea that there                                                                    
     is an inclusion  of the two.  When  they meld together,                                                                    
     it's  going to  be  only a  $5  million deficit,  eight                                                                    
     years out, or whatever year that is.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
MR. BURNETT clarified,  "It's four years out, and  that number is                                                               
shown in the analysis."                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  HOLM said,  "Yeah, I  just wanted  to point  that                                                               
out; that's a  very good thing."  He said  that someone wrote him                                                               
a  letter  recalling that  Fairbanks  wanted  to have  200  beds;                                                               
however, he  noted that there  are only  80 beds proposed  in the                                                               
bill.  He asked what the reason for that is.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR.  BURNETT  explained that  80  beds  is  the number  that  the                                                               
department has  determined is  appropriate in  order to  meet the                                                               
overcrowded, pretrial needs of the  Fairbanks area.  By expanding                                                               
at  a  larger   facility  in  another  location,   he  said,  the                                                               
department  will be  able to  take  more people  [in those  other                                                               
areas] and  avoid having longer-term  prisoners in  the Fairbanks                                                               
area.                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HOLM  asked if that  would also be because  of the                                                               
fact that  the facility  in Bethel is  closely entwined  with the                                                               
facility in Fairbanks.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
MR. BURNETT  answered, "Not directly,  but it's the same  type of                                                               
problem  in Bethel."   Both  places, he  explained, are  regional                                                               
areas  that gather  pretrial prisoners,  and,  he reiterated,  by                                                               
having  in-state   facilities  sufficient  to   keep  longer-term                                                               
prisoners,  the  department  is  able to  reduce  the  number  of                                                               
longer-term  prisoners in  those facilities.   In  response to  a                                                               
follow-up question  by Representative Holm, he  confirmed that it                                                               
is the department's position that  80 beds [added to the facility                                                               
in Fairbanks] would be sufficient.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR WEYHRAUCH stated  for the record that he  had called almost                                                               
every community  that [has] a  correctional facility to  find out                                                               
if more  beds should  possibly be added,  because, he  opined, it                                                               
seemed like [HB 134] [would be] "the vehicle to do it in."                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  STOLTZE  noted  that  there  is  an  $80  million                                                               
hospital being  built at the  intersection of the  communities of                                                               
Palmer and Wasilla.   He said that there  are already discussions                                                               
going on about  adding security provisions in that  hospital.  He                                                               
also  said,  "There's  already discussions  with  the  utilities.                                                               
They're stepping  forward and trying  to find ways to  reduce the                                                               
operational  cost  of  providing  more  efficient  energy."    He                                                               
indicated  that efforts  are being  made,  not only  to fuel  the                                                               
economies  in the  communities involved,  but also  to make  [the                                                               
proposals] work in the most efficient manner possible.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  SEATON expressed  his appreciation  for the  work                                                               
done  by Representative  Stoltze  and DOC,  for  the synergy  and                                                               
efforts  of  DOC   and  the  City  [of  Seward],   and  for  [the                                                               
department's] incorporating  the intent  language to  ensure that                                                               
"all these pieces come together."                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Number 2700                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SEATON  moved to  report the  committee substitute                                                               
(CS) for HB 134, Version  23-LS0563\H, Luckhaupt, 4/15/03, out of                                                               
committee  with individual  recommendations and  the accompanying                                                               
fiscal  note.    There  being no  objection,  CSHB  134(STA)  was                                                               
reported out of the House State Affairs Standing Committee.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
HB 243-EVALUATION OF AGENCY PROGRAMS                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Number 2729                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR WEYHRAUCH returned the committee's  attention to HOUSE BILL                                                               
NO. 243,  "An Act establishing  state agency  program performance                                                               
management and  audit powers  in the Office  of the  Governor for                                                               
the  evaluation   of  agency  programs;  and   providing  for  an                                                               
effective date."                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  WEYHRAUCH   brought  attention  back   to  [Representative                                                               
Berkowitz's] proposed conceptual amendment:                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     Page 2, line 4, after "confidential"                                                                                       
     Insert  "only   to  the   extent  permitted   by  other                                                                    
     provisions of law"                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR WEYHRAUCH noted that if  the conceptual amendment is added,                                                               
[page 2, beginning on line 4  of the original bill, would read as                                                               
follows:                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
     Internal   audit   work   papers  and   other   related                                                                    
     supportive  material  are   confidential  only  to  the                                                                    
     extent  permitted  by  other  provisions  of  law,  and                                                                    
     internal audit reports  are confidential until released                                                                    
     by the governor.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Number 2814                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE BERKOWITZ, for the  benefit of Mr. Baldwin, stated                                                               
that he  does not want [HB  243] to create an  additional area of                                                               
confidentiality.   He said that  based on previous  testimony, it                                                               
seemed to him  that the major areas of  where confidential issues                                                               
arose -  for example, personnel issues,  proprietary information,                                                               
and court and medical records  - were covered in other provisions                                                               
of law.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
JAMES BALDWIN,  Assistant Attorney General,  Governmental Affairs                                                               
Section,  Civil  Division  (Juneau),  Department  of  Law  (DOL),                                                               
responded as follows:                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
     The reason that we drafted the  bill the way we did was                                                                    
     ... to try to approximate  the kind of powers that your                                                                    
     auditors have,  so that they  could be as  effective as                                                                    
     your  auditors  are in  what  they  do  for you.    The                                                                    
     problem with  what I think Representative  Berkowitz is                                                                    
     proposing -  the problem for  us -  is that it  gets us                                                                    
     into this qualified nature of  the privilege.  In other                                                                    
     words, you're in this balancing approach.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
     I'm not  sure that  all the areas  that are  covered by                                                                    
     confidentiality  provisions now  would be  broad enough                                                                    
     to cover what  we proposed these auditors  to be doing,                                                                    
     which ...  basically would be  not the typical  type of                                                                    
     post-audit function  - which your auditors  now do [an]                                                                    
     extremely  good  job  of  -  but  the  performance-type                                                                    
     audits  that  the  governor   wants  to  institute  for                                                                    
     determining  how programs  are operating,  advising him                                                                    
     on  policy  directives,  and   providing  him  with  an                                                                    
     ability  to reach  in to  the departments  and exercise                                                                    
     the  kind  of control  that  he  believes he  wants  to                                                                    
     exercise.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
     And so,  we wanted this broad  area of confidentiality,                                                                    
     because it's  really the governor  [who's] going  to be                                                                    
     ... using these people as a  tool, and so it'll be part                                                                    
     of  his executive  privilege-type confidentiality  that                                                                    
     we would  like to attach  to this.   So, that's  why we                                                                    
     had it  in the bill as  being sort of an  absolute area                                                                    
     of confidentiality in that context.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE BERKOWITZ said that  he understands the governor's                                                               
desire to  expand his  powers as  much as  possible, but  he said                                                               
that [the  legislature's] responsibility  is to  constrict [those                                                               
powers]  as much  as it  can.   Regarding performance  audits, he                                                               
asked if  they take place  at the  federal level in  other states                                                               
and, if  so, what kind  of confidentiality provisions  "attach in                                                               
those jurisdictions."                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
MR. BALDWIN  answered that he has  not done the type  of research                                                               
that  would enable  him to  answer that  question.   He said,  "I                                                               
believe they do have normal-type confidentiality requirements."                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
TAPE 03-41, SIDE B                                                                                                            
Number 2969                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE BERKOWITZ  stated that  if there was  a conclusion                                                               
that came  from an audit, it  would be helpful, as  a legislator,                                                               
to know  how that decision  was arrived at,  in order to  look at                                                               
the steps  that led  to the conclusion  and determine  whether to                                                               
agree or  disagree.   He indicated it  would involve  things like                                                               
methodology and input.   He added, "Unless we have  access to the                                                               
predicate  work  that  led  to  the  conclusion,  it's  sometimes                                                               
difficult to agree or disagree with an audit."                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Number 2912                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
JAY HOGAN, Deputy Director, Office  of Management & Budget (OMB),                                                               
Office of the  Governor, stated that his feeling is  that the end                                                               
product would  be very  similar to  what the  legislative auditor                                                               
currently    delivers   to    the   committee,    provided   [the                                                               
administration]  was  doing an  audit,  as  opposed to  a  budget                                                               
preparation.   He added, "In fact,  we have over in  our office a                                                               
set of the internal audit reports  that were done by the function                                                               
when it  existed previously, and  they look very much  similar in                                                               
layout and  so on, and  they're all released documents  and filed                                                               
accordingly."                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR WEYHRAUCH referred to "the new  Section 3," and asked if it                                                               
would  restrict the  legislative auditors  from performing  their                                                               
audit function, by  not having access to  executive branch papers                                                               
or documents.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
MR. BALDWIN answered as follows:                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     I think to a certain extent  it would.  And let me just                                                                    
     say this  is a delicate area.   I know that  [I'm] here                                                                    
     as a  lawyer for  the executive  branch talking  to the                                                                    
     legislative branch, but please  understand that just as                                                                    
     there  are  certain  areas   that  the  governor  can't                                                                    
     intrude upon, as  far as your legislative  powers go, I                                                                    
     think you  have to  acknowledge that there  are certain                                                                    
     areas in  the governor's powers that  legislators can't                                                                    
     intrude upon.   And so,  to the extent that  an auditor                                                                    
     is your  representative, your employee ...  in carrying                                                                    
     out your functions, there would  be certain things that                                                                    
     I think ...  one of our internal auditors  might do for                                                                    
     the governor that  it would not be  appropriate for the                                                                    
     legislative auditor  to have access  to.  And so,  to a                                                                    
     certain  extent,  yes,  I would  have  to  answer  that                                                                    
     question yes to be open with you about it.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR WEYHRAUCH  asked how the  public would have  complete trust                                                               
in the integrity  of a process, whatever branch  of government it                                                               
may be in, if somebody else  can't come in and scrutinize it from                                                               
the outside to determine whether there's corruption.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE BERKOWITZ echoed, "Who audits the auditors?"                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MR. BALDWIN  said that  he thinks that  public officials  have to                                                               
answer to the voters every two  or four years regarding what they                                                               
do; however, he  opined that in carrying out  their powers, there                                                               
has  to  be  some  protection  for the  advice  that's  given  to                                                               
decision   makers,   "so   that    it's   candid   and   operates                                                               
appropriately, which is  exactly why we have  the privileges that                                                               
we have."  He continued as follows:                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
     This would set it out  in law so people understand what                                                                    
     it is.  It's only provided  up until the point that the                                                                    
     governor decides to release the  audit report, which is                                                                    
     very similar  to the powers  and the way  [the] process                                                                    
     works on  the legislative side  of the exercise  of the                                                                    
     audit function.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     If  there  is something  going  on  that is  of  public                                                                    
     interest, usually it's hard to  keep it from the public                                                                    
     once  there's   some  understanding  of  it   being  in                                                                    
     existence.  And I think  it would function, in essence,                                                                    
     the  way  it  functions  on  the  legislative  side  of                                                                    
     things.  ... Audits  ultimately are  made public;  it's                                                                    
     just  that, during  the process  of the  development of                                                                    
     the audit and  the advice that the  auditors are giving                                                                    
     to  the governor  until the  policy  decision is  made,                                                                    
     it's  considered   the  best  practice  to   keep  that                                                                    
     shielded  from  inquiry  until the  decision  is  made.                                                                    
     After that  point, there's not  much of an  interest in                                                                    
     keeping it confidential.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Number 2709                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR WEYHRAUCH indicated that  the proposed committee substitute                                                               
was worked on  with some desire to alleviate  tension between the                                                               
executive and legislative  branch during an audit,  and prevent a                                                               
lawsuit  between  those   two  branches.    He   stated  that  he                                                               
understood  from  Ms.  Davidson's  previous  testimony  that  the                                                               
committee substitute  language would actually interfere  with the                                                               
auditing process  and, therefore, it  was not recommended  to the                                                               
committee.   He added  that it  sounds like  what Mr.  Baldwin is                                                               
saying is  that there will  still be inherent tensions  that will                                                               
need a mediator/third  body to resolve them.  He  said he doesn't                                                               
know  what sort  of language  will prevent  this, but  perhaps it                                                               
will be Representative Berkowitz's conceptual amendment.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HOLM said he thinks  the committee is getting "far                                                               
a  field"  from  what  it  is  trying  to  do.    He  stated  his                                                               
understanding  that  the  bill  is  an  attempt  to  provide  the                                                               
management  function  of audit  to  improve  the ability  of  the                                                               
administration  to administer.   It's  not about  trying to  keep                                                               
something  from the  legislature;  rather, it's  about trying  to                                                               
allow the  administration to  function in a  manner similar  to a                                                               
business, for  example.  He  explained that in his  business, the                                                               
books  are   audited  to   ensure  that   things  are   not  done                                                               
inappropriately.     Furthermore,   that   information  is   kept                                                               
internally; it  is opened  up to  a bank only  after it  has been                                                               
prepared, and  is not opened up  to the public.   Referring again                                                               
to his own business, Representative  Holm said, "So we don't just                                                               
go out and  ... [throw] everything out on the  table and ... say,                                                               
'Well, you go figure out some way  to say that we're not doing it                                                               
appropriately.'                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HOLM said he thinks  Mr. Baldwin made a good point                                                               
regarding   the  administration   and   the  legislature   having                                                               
different functions  to fulfill.  Notwithstanding  that, he added                                                               
that  the  legislature still  has  oversight;  it still  has  the                                                               
ability  to appropriate  funds to  the administration.   He  said                                                               
that,  personally,  he  wants  to  give  the  administration  the                                                               
opportunity to  function in the best  manner that it can,  and he                                                               
doesn't see [HB  243] as trying to create some  kind of insidious                                                               
confidential  situation; rather,  "it's something  where you  can                                                               
work   within  your   departments  to   really  work   with  them                                                               
appropriately."                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Number 2553                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SEATON  referred to  page 2,  line 4,  which read,                                                               
"Internal  audit   work  papers  and  other   related  supportive                                                               
material", and asked if those are confidential now.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
MR. BALDWIN answered  that in the legislative  audit context they                                                               
are.   In  response  to a  follow-up  question by  Representative                                                               
Seaton,  Mr.  Baldwin  stated his  understanding  that  upon  the                                                               
request of  a legislator or  the [Joint Committee  on Legislative                                                               
Budget and Audit], a performance audit can be done.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SEATON said:   "I think that what I  heard you say                                                               
was if we  establish this within the governor's  office, that may                                                               
restrict  the  ability  of  legislative  audit  to  access  these                                                               
materials  that they  now  have the  ability to  access  to do  a                                                               
performance audit for us.  Is that correct?"                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. BALDWIN responded as follows:                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     I think  we're getting  two things  crossed here.   The                                                                    
     legislative auditors  are going to still  have the same                                                                    
     access to  whatever materials they have  now, but there                                                                    
     might  be  audit  materials   that  our  auditors  have                                                                    
     collected for their own specific  audits ....  But, the                                                                    
     basic material  from which all  that is drawn  would be                                                                    
     as equally available to the  legislative auditors as to                                                                    
     our auditors.  This would not interfere with that.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SEATON asked Ms. Davidson  if she shares that same                                                               
interpretation.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MS.  DAVIDSON   replied  that  the  base   information  would  be                                                               
available to the division.  She continued as follows:                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
     Typically,  it's more  efficient.   If somebody's  gone                                                                    
     in, done the work,  conducted the interviews, it's more                                                                    
     efficient to go in [and]  review their work, to decide,                                                                    
     "Where do we  want to go from here.?"   So, it's more a                                                                    
     matter of  efficiency, as opposed to  not having access                                                                    
     to the base information or the base transaction.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  HOLM asked  Ms. Davidson  if she  would feel  any                                                               
restriction  in being  able to  continue the  division's function                                                               
due  to  the  power  [that  HB  243  proposes  to  give  to]  the                                                               
administration.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Number 2402                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MS.  DAVIDSON  answered,  "Generally,  no."    She  continued  as                                                               
follows:                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
     Actually,  [when]  the   internal  audit  function  ...                                                                    
     operated in the  past, ... there was  a report released                                                                    
     by that organization,  and we were asked  by the [Joint                                                                    
     Committee on Legislative Budget  and Audit] to go audit                                                                    
     that report.  And we had  access to the work papers and                                                                    
     we were able to carry out that audit.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  HOLM asked  if Ms.  Davidson thinks  the division                                                               
will still have  its oversight function and would  not be impeded                                                               
in its functions by "this audit in place."                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
MS. DAVIDSON responded:                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
     I don't know  if it was a matter  of accommodation that                                                                    
     we were  offered to take  a look at these  work papers,                                                                    
     or they didn't have a  statutory basis for carrying out                                                                    
     that mission.   I don't know the legal  basis for that.                                                                    
     And again,  ... if  I understood correctly,  the matter                                                                    
     isn't  really  one  of confidentiality  or  not;  we've                                                                    
     moved on  to the powers  between the executive  and the                                                                    
     legislative branches.   And in  the past, we  have been                                                                    
     accommodated,  and been  able to  look into  their work                                                                    
     papers.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE BERKOWITZ  asked if there are  statutes which were                                                               
repealed  that need  to be  resurrected  and, if  there were,  he                                                               
asked what those statutes said about confidentiality.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Number 2286                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MR.   BALDWIN  replied   that  there   was  no   provision  about                                                               
confidentiality.  The  audit function, he said, was  more or less                                                               
an implied  power "when we did  it."  According to  his research,                                                               
Mr. Baldwin said,  there are still some vestiges  of the statutes                                                               
that  exist in  the Department  of Administration;  however, they                                                               
are not exercised "in the way of an audit function."                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BERKOWITZ suggested  that an  implied power  that                                                               
has gone  unexercised for a number  of years is still  an implied                                                               
power.  He asked if that is correct.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MR. BALDWIN  reiterated that it  has not been exercised,  but may                                                               
be  implied.   He added,  "It was  our judgment  it would  ... be                                                               
better  that it  be expressed,  and  that we  get it  out on  the                                                               
table, and  we have  this kind  of protection;  it's [a]  kind of                                                               
confidentiality  protection  provided for  in  the  statute as  a                                                               
matter of statutory (indisc)."                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BERKOWITZ asked,  "When it  was exercised  in the                                                               
implied context, how were the confidentiality issues handled?"                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
MR.  BALDWIN said,  as  written  in his  letter,  it  would be  a                                                               
qualified privilege or immunity, if  anything would apply to it -                                                               
not an  absolute-type immunity or privilege  that the legislature                                                               
enjoys.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE BERKOWITZ  said, "So, under the  implied condition                                                               
it was  qualified; under  this statute here  it's expressed?   So                                                               
there's an increase in confidentiality here?"                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
MR.  BALDWIN answered,  "To a  certain extent,  yes."   He stated                                                               
that the intention is to make  it the same kind of protection and                                                               
effectiveness that the legislative  auditors have.  He clarified,                                                               
"So  the   statute  approximates  the  kind   of  confidentiality                                                               
coverage  that your  audit reports  -  your work  papers -  would                                                               
have."                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE BERKOWITZ asked, "When  the audits were done under                                                               
the  implied powers,  ... were  they somehow  deficient in  their                                                               
quality because  it was done  through an implied, rather  than an                                                               
express provision?"                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
MR. BALDWIN said he really doesn't know.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Number 2203                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR WEYHRAUCH announced that HB 243 was heard and held.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
HB 266-ELECTIONS                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
[Contains discussion  of SB  24, which  was incorporated  into HB
266, and brief mention of HB 221.]                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Number 2160                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR WEYHRAUCH  announced that  the last  order of  business was                                                               
HOUSE BILL  NO. 266,  "An Act  relating to  elections, questioned                                                               
ballots and  questioned voters,  voter registration,  training of                                                               
election  officials,  preparation  of election  materials,  voter                                                               
identification,  absentee  voting,   counting  ballots,  and  the                                                               
primary election; and providing for an effective date."                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Number 2126                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
LAURA  GLAISER, Director,  Division of  Elections, Office  of the                                                               
Lieutenant Governor, read from  "the sponsor statement" [included                                                               
in  the  committee  packet],  which  read  as  follows  [original                                                               
punctuation provided]:                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
       In October, 2002, President Bush signed the "Help                                                                        
       America Vote Act," (H.R. 3295) into law (P.L. 107-                                                                       
     252).   HAVA is  the result of  a bipartisan  effort in                                                                    
     Congress to  make sweeping changes to  federal election                                                                    
     laws   to  improve   the   overall  administration   of                                                                    
     elections,   increase  accessibility   to  those   with                                                                    
     disabilities, and also to prevent voter fraud.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
     Many  changes  required  under   HAVA  do  not  require                                                                    
     amending  Alaska statute,  but  HB  266 includes  those                                                                    
     necessary   to   meet   federal  mandates.      Changes                                                                    
     recommended in  the bill before  you follow  the intent                                                                    
     of  the  federal  law  and  do  not  place  unnecessary                                                                    
     burdens  on the  voter.   It is  imperative that  these                                                                    
     changes  mandated  by federal  law  are  passed by  the                                                                    
     Legislature this year.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     HB 266  also includes changes the  Division recommends.                                                                    
     The  Division  supports  the  language  recommended  in                                                                    
     Senator Lincoln's  SB 24, and  it has been  included in                                                                    
     this  bill   with  her   permission.     Other  changes                                                                    
     regarding   returning  identification/voter   cards  to                                                                    
     other jurisdictions, reference to  a "master list," and                                                                    
     adding  types of  information that  can be  provided by                                                                    
     the voter  when registering in person  are requested by                                                                    
     the Division in this bill.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
     Perhaps  the most  significant change  NOT mandated  by                                                                    
     the  federal  act,  but recommended  in  this  bill  is                                                                    
     replacing  the terms  "non  partisan" and  "undeclared"                                                                    
     with the term "unaffiliated."   Many voters do not know                                                                    
     the  difference  between  the two  classifications  and                                                                    
     make  numerous party  affiliation  changes between  the                                                                    
     "non partisan" and "undeclared."   This would eliminate                                                                    
     confusion  on   the  part  of  the   voter,  while  not                                                                    
     affecting their access to the ballot.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     The  Division of  Elections asks  for  your support  of                                                                    
     House Bill 266.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Number 2025                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR WEYHRAUCH asked what the difference currently is between                                                                  
"non partisan" and "undeclared".                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
MS.  GLAISER  said that  the  answer  varies from  individual  to                                                               
individual.  She  added, "That's the whole point  of the change."                                                               
She noted  that there's  no legal  definition in  "the definition                                                               
section"   of  statutes.     In   response  to   a  question   by                                                               
Representative  Lynn, she  replied  that she  does  not know  the                                                               
history [of the two terms].                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  WEYHRAUCH  asked if  the  Department  of Justice  requires                                                               
review and approval of [HB 266]  after it has been adopted, or if                                                               
[the bill] had already been approved.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Number 1930                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
SARAH   FELIX,  Assistant   Attorney   General,  Civil   Division                                                               
(Juneau), Department  of Law (DOL),  said, "We would  submit this                                                               
for  pre-clearance  to  the  Department  of  Justice  after  it's                                                               
adopted."                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  WEYHRAUCH asked  Ms. Felix  what her  confidence level  is                                                               
that [HB  266], in  its present  form, would  be approved  by the                                                               
Department of Justice.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
MS. FELIX responded  that she is very confident that  it would be                                                               
approved.   She said,  "We really [have]  just gone  according to                                                               
the letter  of HAVA.   The  Department of Justice  has sent  us a                                                               
letter saying they are ready and  waiting for the states to begin                                                               
sending these sorts  of bills in for pre-clearance.   So, I think                                                               
we're all set to go."                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  WEYHRAUCH  asked   if  the  state  also  has   a  plan  of                                                               
implementation ready.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
MS. FELIX deferred the question to Ms. Glaiser.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MS. GLAISER  stated that [the  division] is also  required "under                                                               
this  federal law"  to prepare  a state  plan.   She mentioned  a                                                               
state planning committee  meeting and a draft  form, [which] will                                                               
go out  for public notice  from April 28 to  May 28 [2003].   She                                                               
indicated there would be a public  hearing, and she said that the                                                               
state  plan  would  be  submitted to  the  Federal  Election  and                                                               
Administration Commission.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
MS.  GLAISER,  in response  to  a  question by  Chair  Weyhrauch,                                                               
acknowledged that  SB 24 was  introduced this year.   In response                                                               
to a follow-up question from  Chair Weyhrauch, she confirmed that                                                               
SB 24 has been incorporated, in  full, into HB 266; therefore, it                                                               
is  not  necessary  [to  remain]  as a  stand-alone  bill.    She                                                               
mentioned  that Senator  Georgianna Lincoln  met with  Lieutenant                                                               
Governor Loren Leman [regarding the issue].                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  HOLM  noted  that   there  are  two  other  bills                                                               
regarding voter fraud.  He mentioned  that one of them is HB 221.                                                               
He said  he was wondering  if those bills should  be incorporated                                                               
into [HB 266].                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
MS.  GLAISER responded  that she  would prefer  to keep  [HB 266]                                                               
lean.   She  noted that  federal mandates  are involved  and said                                                               
that she doesn't want to do anything to slow the bill down.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  GRUENBERG indicated  not wanting  to "screw  this                                                               
bill up, because this is a federal requirement."                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Number 1643                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MS.  GLAISER,   in  response  to  a   request  by  Representative                                                               
Gruenberg,  told  the committee  that  she  had spoken  with  him                                                               
[outside of  the meeting], at  which time  he had noted  that the                                                               
federal  law  requires  that   [the  division]  "identify  voters                                                               
through a  free access  system if their  question ballot  was not                                                               
counted,  or  [only  a]  portion of  their  question  ballot  was                                                               
counted.   Same for  an absentee  ballot."   She stated  that the                                                               
current  division policy  is to  send the  voter a  letter.   She                                                               
continued as follows:                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
     Since the  federal law required  either a website  or a                                                                    
     toll  free number,  ... this  bill repeals  the section                                                                    
     where it  requires that we  send a letter  in addition.                                                                    
     Representative Gruenberg's  amendment would  require us                                                                    
     to  send a  letter  as  well as  have  the free  access                                                                    
     system.   It's  something we  already do;  it will  not                                                                    
     cause an additional cost, but it is an extra process.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE   GRUENBERG   mentioned    that   Jack   Chenoweth                                                               
[Legislative Legal and Research Services]  had just cited a legal                                                               
opinion  on  [an  amendment  Representative  Gruenberg  wants  to                                                               
offer].  He deferred further explanation to his staff.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Number 1572                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
JUSTIN ROBERTS,  Staff to Representative Gruenberg,  Alaska State                                                               
Legislature,  explained  that  the amendment  would  require  the                                                               
division of "send  out the mailer and have  the Internet system."                                                               
He referred to the second page  of a letter [from Jack Chenoweth,                                                               
included in  the committee packet], which  is regarding partially                                                               
counted votes.  He continued as follows:                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
     Right  now, what  the bill  does  is it  takes out  all                                                                    
     requirements  to notify  the  people  if you  partially                                                                    
     counted  their votes.    And so  what  we weren't  sure                                                                    
     about was  whether or not  we are going to  insert both                                                                    
     the requirement  that this be on  the electronic system                                                                    
      and the requirement to hand out the mailer, or just                                                                       
      the requirement that it be on the electronic system.                                                                      
     Right now, there's no requirement to notify.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GRUENBERG noted  that [HB 266] must  be passed and                                                               
into  law  by July  [2003].    He stated  his  belief  that if  a                                                               
person's ballot is  not counted, that person  should be notified.                                                               
He asked  Chair Weyhrauch if  he would  grant him time  until the                                                               
bill's  next  committee meeting    to  discuss  the issue  of  an                                                               
amendment with his staff, Ms. Glaiser, and Jack Chenoweth.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  WEYHRAUCH  asked  Ms.  Glaiser   when  the  House  Finance                                                               
Standing Committee would hear the bill.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
MS. GLAISER  replied that  she could  "put her  request, 'Pending                                                               
Referral'."                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  GRUENBERG  stated  that   he  thinks  that  if  a                                                               
person's ballot is not going to  be counted, that person ought to                                                               
be sent a letter [informing him/her of that].                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  WEYHRAUCH said  that  he  needs to  know  what the  policy                                                               
implications of that are and  wants the benefit of the division's                                                               
views on it.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE LYNN remarked  that not everyone knows  how to use                                                               
the Internet or has access to it.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Number 1290                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MS. GLAISER noted that Representative  Mary Kapsner had served on                                                               
the state planning committee and  requested that there be a toll-                                                               
free  number, in  addition, for  those who  do not  have Internet                                                               
access.   She said  that the  division thought  that it  would be                                                               
more  lean  and do  away  with  the  letters, but  she  expressed                                                               
willingness to  send out the  letters if the committee  wants the                                                               
division to do so.  She said  there will be more time and expense                                                               
involved.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  WEYHRAUCH commented  that  there is  a  fiscal impact,  as                                                               
well.  He asked, "You do a letter now, don't you?"                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
MS. GLAISER  said that  her understanding of  the fiscal  note is                                                               
that it's  an additional cost.   "We currently do a  letter, so I                                                               
don't think  we would increase  the fiscal note if  we (indisc.),                                                               
but again, I would defer to you," she added.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE BERKOWITZ  said, "I  like those  question ballots.                                                               
I like having the term  'questions' instead of 'provisional', and                                                               
I was  wondering how  critical it  is for you  all to  shift that                                                               
term."                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
MS. GLAISER  stated that it  is conforming language that  is used                                                               
in federal  law, as  well as  the language that  will be  used by                                                               
other  states, but  is not  mandated by  the federal  government;                                                               
therefore, if  the committee members  all decided that  they like                                                               
the term "question ballots", the division will call them that.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Number 1176                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BERKOWITZ moved  to  adopt Conceptual  [Amendment                                                               
1],  to "restore  the term,  'question'  where 'provisional'  has                                                               
been inserted."                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  GRUENBERG  asked  if  that  relates  to  his  own                                                               
amendment, or is separate.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE BERKOWITZ indicated  that [Conceptual Amendment 1]                                                               
strictly  pertains to  "which  term  we'll want  to  use for  the                                                               
ballots."                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GRUENBERG said he would  work on his own amendment                                                               
over the weekend.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR WEYHRAUCH, in  response to Ms. Glaiser,  confirmed that the                                                               
bill would be heard again by the committee at its next meeting.                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MS.  GLAISER confirmed  that  she  would be  happy  to work  with                                                               
Representative Gruenberg.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR WEYHRAUCH indicated that the bill would be heard and held.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE BERKOWITZ  reminded the committee that  his motion                                                               
to adopt [Conceptual Amendment 1] is pending.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR WEYHRAUCH  asked Representative  Berkowitz if he  wanted to                                                               
address it  now.  He  restated Representative  Berkowitz's motion                                                               
to adopt [Conceptual Amendment 1].  [No objection was stated.]                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  GRUENBERG requested  that Conceptual  Amendment 1                                                               
be  included in  a committee  substitute to  be available  to the                                                               
committee by the bill's next hearing.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Number 0905                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  WEYHRAUCH  clarified  that [Conceptual  Amendment  1]  was                                                               
adopted.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GRUENBERG suggested that the  title of the bill be                                                               
tight before it leaves the committee.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE    BERKOWITZ    concurred   with    Representative                                                               
Gruenberg.   He  said, "You  have an  act relating  to elections.                                                               
We're talking  campaign finance reform, we're  talking everything                                                               
here."                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE LYNN  requested that  the previously  stated issue                                                               
regarding   the  terms   "undeclared"  and   "non  partisan"   be                                                               
addressed.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
[HB 266 was heard and held.]                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
ADJOURNMENT                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Number 0777                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
There being no  further business before the  committee, the House                                                               
State Affairs  Standing Committee  meeting was adjourned  at 9:40                                                               
a.m.                                                                                                                            

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