Legislature(2005 - 2006)CAPITOL 106

02/08/2005 08:00 AM STATE AFFAIRS


Download Mp3. <- Right click and save file as

Audio Topic
08:02:08 AM Start
08:04:35 AM HB90
08:12:29 AM Executive Order 113
08:33:04 AM HB94
09:59:28 AM Adjourn
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
+ HB 90 STATE TREASURY WARRANTS TELECONFERENCED
Moved Out of Committee
+ Executive Order 113 TELECONFERENCED
Heard & Held
+= HB 94 ELECTIONS TELECONFERENCED
Heard & Held
Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled
                    ALASKA STATE LEGISLATURE                                                                                  
             HOUSE STATE AFFAIRS STANDING COMMITTEE                                                                           
                        February 8, 2005                                                                                        
                           8:02 a.m.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Representative Paul Seaton, Chair                                                                                               
Representative Carl Gatto, Vice Chair                                                                                           
Representative Jim Elkins                                                                                                       
Representative Bob Lynn                                                                                                         
Representative Jay Ramras                                                                                                       
Representative Berta Gardner                                                                                                    
Representative Max Gruenberg                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
All members present                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
OTHER LEGISLATORS PRESENT                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Representative Kurt Olson                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 90                                                                                                               
"An   Act  requiring   warrants  drawn   by  the   Department  of                                                               
Administration  against  the  state  treasury  to  be  negotiable                                                               
instruments."                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
     - MOVED HB 90 OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
EXECUTIVE ORDER 113                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
     - HEARD AND HELD                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 94                                                                                                               
"An Act  relating to qualifications  of voters,  requirements and                                                               
procedures  regarding independent  candidates  for President  and                                                               
Vice-President  of  the  United States,  voter  registration  and                                                               
voter registration  records, voter  registration through  a power                                                               
of attorney,  voter registration  using scanned  documents, voter                                                               
residence, precinct  boundary and  polling place  designation and                                                               
modification, recognized  political parties,  voters unaffiliated                                                               
with   a  political   party,  early   voting,  absentee   voting,                                                               
application for absentee ballots through  a power of attorney, or                                                               
by scanned  documents, ballot design, ballot  counting, voting by                                                               
mail,   voting   machines,   vote  tally   systems,   initiative,                                                               
referendum, recall, and definitions  in the Alaska Election Code;                                                               
relating  to  incorporation  elections;   and  providing  for  an                                                               
effective date."                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     - HEARD AND HELD                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
PREVIOUS COMMITTEE ACTION                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
BILL: HB  90                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE: STATE TREASURY WARRANTS                                                                                            
SPONSOR(s): STATE AFFAIRS                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
01/21/05       (H)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
01/21/05       (H)       L&C, STA                                                                                               
02/02/05       (H)       L&C AT 3:15 PM CAPITOL 17                                                                              
02/02/05       (H)       Moved Out of Committee                                                                                 
02/02/05       (H)       MINUTE(L&C)                                                                                            
02/04/05       (H)       L&C RPT 5DP                                                                                            
02/04/05       (H)       DP: LYNN, KOTT, LEDOUX, GUTTENBERG,                                                                    
                         ANDERSON                                                                                               
02/08/05       (H)       STA AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
BILL: HB  94                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE: ELECTIONS                                                                                                          
SPONSOR(s): RULES BY REQUEST OF THE GOVERNOR                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
01/21/05       (H)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
01/21/05       (H)       STA, JUD, FIN                                                                                          
02/03/05       (H)       STA AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
02/03/05       (H)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
02/03/05       (H)       MINUTE(STA)                                                                                            
02/08/05       (H)       STA AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
WITNESS REGISTER                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
KIM GARNERO, Director                                                                                                           
Division of Finance                                                                                                             
Department of Administration                                                                                                    
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Answered questions on behalf of the                                                                        
department during the hearing on HB 90.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
MICHELLE PREBULA, Cash Manager                                                                                                  
Treasury Division                                                                                                               
Department of Revenue                                                                                                           
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION  STATEMENT:    Answered   questions  on  behalf  of  the                                                               
division during the hearing on HB 90.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
KEVIN BROOKS, Deputy Commissioner                                                                                               
Office of the Commissioner                                                                                                      
Department of Administration                                                                                                    
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION  STATEMENT:    Testified  on behalf  of  the  department                                                               
during the hearing on EO 113.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
LAURA GLASIER, Director                                                                                                         
Division of Elections                                                                                                           
Office of the Lieutenant Governor                                                                                               
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION  STATEMENT:    Reviewed  a new  sectional  analysis  and                                                               
answered questions on behalf of  the division, during the hearing                                                               
on HB 94.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
ACTION NARRATIVE                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  PAUL  SEATON  called  the  House  State  Affairs  Standing                                                             
Committee meeting  to order at 8:02:08  AM.  Present at  the call                                                             
to order were Representatives  Gatto, Elkins, Gardner, Gruenberg,                                                               
and  Seaton.   Representative  Lynn  and  Ramras arrived  as  the                                                               
meeting was in progress.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
HB  90-STATE TREASURY WARRANTS                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  SEATON announced  that  the first  order  of business  was                                                               
HOUSE  BILL NO.  90,  "An  Act requiring  warrants  drawn by  the                                                               
Department  of Administration  against the  state treasury  to be                                                               
negotiable instruments."                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
8:04:35 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GRUENBERG,  speaking on behalf of  the House State                                                               
Affairs Standing  Committee, sponsor  of HB  90, stated  that the                                                               
proposed  legislation is  the same  as House  Bill 373  from last                                                               
year and  would codify the  supreme court's decision  in National                                                             
Bank  of Alaska  v. Univentures  1231 site  824 P.2d  1377 Alaska                                                             
1992.     The  bill  would  make   treasury  warrants  negotiable                                                               
instruments within the meaning of  AS 45.03.104(a) in the Uniform                                                               
Commercial Code.   Representative  Gruenberg explained  that this                                                               
will cure  in statute a  problem that had  to be litigated  up to                                                               
the  supreme court  to  ensure that  treasury  warrants were  not                                                               
dishonored in  the technical commercial sense,  so that financial                                                               
institutions were  not left "holding  the bag" when  people would                                                               
negotiate  [treasury  warrants] and  the  state  would refuse  to                                                               
honor them.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
8:06:52 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  GRUENBERG,   in  response  to  a   question  from                                                               
Representative Gardner, said he is  not aware of anyone who would                                                               
oppose  this  legislation.    He said  last  year's  bill  passed                                                               
through  the House  and resided  in the  Senate Rules  Committee,                                                               
where, he  surmised, time ran out.   In response to  a comment by                                                               
Representative Gatto,  he said he  hopes the House will  pass the                                                               
bill and it will make it through  the Senate.  He said [HB 90] is                                                               
good business.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
8:07:49 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
KIM  GARNERO,  Director,  Division   of  Finance,  Department  of                                                               
Administration, noted  that since the supreme  court decision the                                                               
state has  administered its  warrants as  negotiable instruments,                                                               
thus, no  administrative changes would  be necessary as  a result                                                               
of HB 90.  She offered to answer questions from the committee.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
8:08:52 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MICHELLE PREBULA, Cash Manager,  Treasury Division, Department of                                                               
Revenue,  in response  to a  question from  Representative Gatto,                                                               
provided a brief  description of her job and noted  that there is                                                               
a staff of  six, including herself.  In response  to Chair Seaton                                                               
regarding  whether anything  has been  left out  of the  proposed                                                               
legislation, she said she thinks HB  90 will do what the division                                                               
wants it to and is a good bill.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
8:10:17 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS.  GARNERO noted  that  two years  ago  the legislature  passed                                                               
House Bill  109, which changed  the warrant clearing  process for                                                               
stale dated  warrants.  She said,  "This will be the  final tweak                                                               
necessary for it."                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
8:10:44 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  GRUENBERG  noted  that   [HB  90]  was  basically                                                               
drafted by the administration.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
8:11:01 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  SEATON,  after  ascertaining  that there  was  no  one  to                                                               
testify, closed public testimony.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
8:11:16 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GARDNER  moved to  report HB  90 out  of committee                                                               
with  individual  recommendations  and  the  accompanying  fiscal                                                               
note.   There being  no objection,  HB 90  was reported  from the                                                               
House State Affairs Standing Committee.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
^EXECUTIVE ORDER 113                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
8:12:29 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SEATON  announced that the next  order of business                                                               
was Executive Order 113.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
8:13:07 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  SEATON  explained  that the  committee  would  review  the                                                               
executive order (EO) and, if it  disagrees with it, can put forth                                                               
a resolution against it.  He noted  that he does not plan to have                                                               
the committee make that decision today.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
8:13:53 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
KEVIN BROOKS,  Deputy Commissioner,  Office of  the Commissioner,                                                               
Department  of Administration,  explained that  EO 113  transfers                                                               
the  duties   and  responsibilities  of   the  Telecommunications                                                               
Information Council  (TIC) to  the Department  of Administration.                                                               
He  said  the  council  was  created in  the  late  80s  and  was                                                               
comprised  of  the governor's  chair,  commissioners  of all  the                                                               
departments,  one member  each  from the  House  and Senate,  and                                                               
representatives from  the court  system, the university,  and the                                                               
general  public.   Early in  its history,  the council  met on  a                                                               
regular basis;  however, in recent  years it has  not met.   As a                                                               
practical   matter,  the   affairs  of   the  state   related  to                                                               
telecommunications have  been handled  through the  Department of                                                               
Administration,  Mr.  Brooks said,  and  EO  113 recognizes  what                                                               
current practice is.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MR. BROOKS said  he understands that there is  some concern about                                                               
the  identification of  the legislature  as a  state agency  that                                                               
would   fall   under   the   purview   of   the   Department   of                                                               
Administration.   He said he  doesn't think that's the  intent of                                                               
EO 113.   He said the origination of this  action came during the                                                               
fall of this year; there were  regulations that were slated to go                                                               
before TIC for review.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
MR.  BROOKS noted  that in  the regular  course of  business, the                                                               
department interacts  with Pamela  Varni, the  executive director                                                               
in Legislative  Affairs Agency, and Curtis  Clothier, the manager                                                               
of  Data  Processing in  the  same  agency.   He  explained  that                                                               
there's  a   process  that  goes   through  Ms.  Varni   and  the                                                               
Legislative  Council.   He  said the  committee  could choose  to                                                               
clarify that  the legislature is  not a state agency  under "this                                                               
organization."  Mr. Brooks offered to answer questions.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
MR. BROOKS, in  response to a question  from Representative Gatto                                                               
regarding whether a  board that hasn't met for so  long should be                                                               
dissolved rather  than transferred,  explained that EO  113 would                                                               
not transfer the board itself  to the department, just the duties                                                               
of the board.   He noted that the administration  has been active                                                               
in working with  state agencies.  In response to  a question from                                                               
Chair Seaton,  he clarified that  EO 113 actually  would dissolve                                                               
TIC.                                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MR.  BROOKS,  in  response  to  a  question  from  Representative                                                               
Gruenberg regarding  why this  process is  being done  through an                                                               
executive  order  rather  than   through  legislation,  said  the                                                               
decision to do so was not made by the department.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  SEATON,  after  ascertaining  that there  was  no  one  to                                                               
testify, closed public testimony.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEATON noted that the  committee packet holds two documents                                                               
regarding EO  113:   a legislative  recommendation related  to EO                                                               
113 and  an unnamed  House bill  that the  committee may  want to                                                               
consider.   Both documents ask -  should EO 113 be  accepted - if                                                               
the  legislature wants  to remove  itself from  the necessity  of                                                               
approval.  He  offered the example that the  legislature may want                                                               
to update its  computers and would have to get  approval from the                                                               
administration.  He said the  legislature's only option to remove                                                               
itself  from the  oversight  of an  agency is  to  do so  through                                                               
legislation, because it cannot do  so through an executive order.                                                               
He  clarified  that the  unnamed  bill  is labeled,  24-LS0464\A,                                                               
Craver, 1/27/05.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
8:27:16 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE    GRUENBERG    noted   that    the    legislative                                                               
recommendation  seems   to  exclude   other  agencies   as  well,                                                               
including the Permanent Fund Dividend  Corporation and the Alaska                                                               
Housing Finance Corporation (AHFC).   He recommended hearing from                                                               
those  agencies  and  finding out  whether  other  agencies  have                                                               
similar wishes.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
8:28:09 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEATON responded that if  the committee wants to go forward                                                               
to "rectify  this situation" it  must do so  through legislation.                                                               
He said he would  like to get an idea if  that is the committee's                                                               
wish.                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
8:29:04 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GRUENBERG  said he thinks the  Legislative Council                                                               
and other  agencies dealing with  the legislature  would probably                                                               
not want  to be "under  the executive  order."  He  expressed the                                                               
need to address the issue.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
8:30:12 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  SEATON  said he  is  not  an  expert  regarding TIC.    He                                                               
reiterated that  he would like  some indication from  the members                                                               
of  the committee  that  they  would like  to  do something  with                                                               
either the  unnamed bill or  the legislative recommendation.   He                                                               
asked if there  was anyone on the committee who  does not want to                                                               
do so.   [No committee  members voiced objection.]   Chair Seaton                                                               
told Representative  Gruenberg that the current  statute could be                                                               
added to the packet.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
8:31:10 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ELKINS  queried whether the committee  should also                                                               
hear from the judicial branch.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
8:31:38 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEATON  offered his understanding that  the judicial branch                                                               
is already excluded.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
8:31:51 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. BROOKS responded  that he thinks that's correct.   He said he                                                               
thinks the chief justice could choose to appoint someone to TIC.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
8:32:29 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GRUENBERG  noted that  AS 44.19.506  already deals                                                               
with the court system and  directs the administrative director of                                                               
courts  to prepare  an information  system for  the court  system                                                               
consistent with TIC.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
[EO 133 was heard and held.]                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
HB  94-ELECTIONS                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
8:33:04 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEATON announced the last  order of business was HOUSE BILL                                                               
NO.   94,  "An   Act  relating   to  qualifications   of  voters,                                                               
requirements and procedures  regarding independent candidates for                                                               
President  and   Vice-President  of  the  United   States,  voter                                                               
registration and  voter registration records,  voter registration                                                               
through  a power  of attorney,  voter registration  using scanned                                                               
documents, voter  residence, precinct boundary and  polling place                                                               
designation  and  modification,   recognized  political  parties,                                                               
voters  unaffiliated  with  a   political  party,  early  voting,                                                               
absentee  voting,  application  for absentee  ballots  through  a                                                               
power  of  attorney,  or by  scanned  documents,  ballot  design,                                                               
ballot  counting, voting  by mail,  voting  machines, vote  tally                                                               
systems, initiative,  referendum, recall, and definitions  in the                                                               
Alaska Election  Code; relating  to incorporation  elections; and                                                               
providing for an effective date."                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
8:33:21 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
LAURA  GLASIER, Director,  Division of  Elections, Office  of the                                                               
Lieutenant Governor, directed the  committee's attention to a new                                                               
sectional analysis.  She noted  that all the highlighted sections                                                               
appear just as they were in last year's House Bill 523.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
8:35:53 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS.  GLASIER,  in  response   to  questions  from  Representative                                                               
Gruenberg, reiterated that the  highlighted sections would appear                                                               
exactly as  they were  in the  old bill.   She pointed  out which                                                               
sections of House  Bill 523 were not included:   Section 4 became                                                               
Senator Guess's  Senate Bill  284; Sections  8-11 and  13-15 were                                                               
part  of  House Bill  459  by  Representatives Harris  and  Gara;                                                               
Section 50  became Representative  McGuire's House Bill  414; and                                                               
Section 56 was a report to  the legislature due by March 5, 2005,                                                               
but was not included.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
8:39:39 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEATON  asked Ms. Glasier  to provide the committee  with a                                                               
list of those items that were not included.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
8:39:45 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS.   GLASIER  turned   to  Section   8,  regarding   Independent                                                               
presidential candidates, and offered  details.  [Sections 1-7 had                                                               
previously  been reviewed  before  the committee  by Ms.  Glasier                                                               
during  the   2/3/05  House  State  Affairs   Standing  Committee                                                               
meeting.]                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
8:40:46 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS.  GLASIER,  in  response to  a  question  from  Representative                                                               
Gatto,  explained   that  current   statute  doesn't   allow  for                                                               
Independents  to run  on a  ballot,  and Section  8 would  change                                                               
that.                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
8:41:37 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS.  GLASIER directed  attention to  Section 9,  regarding ballot                                                               
counting,  and  noted  that  the word  "assure"  was  changed  to                                                               
"ensure".   She offered  details on  Section 10,  regarding early                                                               
voting.    She  noted  the   changes  specified  in  Section  11,                                                               
regarding  absentee   voting  by  electronic   transmission,  and                                                               
Section  12, regarding  absentee  voting by  mail and  electronic                                                               
transmission.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
8:45:08 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GRUENBERG  said he would be  offering an amendment                                                               
regarding  power  of  attorney  to   allow  a  general  power  of                                                               
attorney.   He noted the use  of the word "specifically"  on page                                                           
3,  line 8,  and language  on page  4, lines  16-17, and  page 7,                                                               
lines 14-16.  He said he  would be offering an amendment in those                                                               
places and any others that  specifically authorize another person                                                               
to apply for an absentee ballot on behalf of another person.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
8:46:45 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS. GLASIER, in response to  Representative Gruenberg, said there                                                               
is no  other language  in the bill  that specifically  requires a                                                               
special power of attorney.  In  response to a question from Chair                                                               
Seaton asking if the division  has any problem with changing from                                                               
a  special power  of  attorney  to allowing  a  general power  of                                                               
attorney,  said the  Department  of Law  suggested "this  route."                                                               
She  indicated that  whatever would  assist the  voters would  be                                                               
best.                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
8:47:14 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE LYNN asked if a  person would be covered if he/she                                                               
didn't know a general power of  attorney was sufficient and got a                                                               
special power of attorney.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
8:48:36 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS. GLASIER offered the following:                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
     This  section of  statute would  allow  someone with  a                                                                    
     power of  attorney -- a case  that I can speak  to is a                                                                    
     mother who  had general power  of attorney for  her son                                                                    
     who  was  serving overseas,  and  she  couldn't make  a                                                                    
     change to his address or  mailing address and he was in                                                                    
     special  forces and  could not  make  contact with  the                                                                    
     division  ...  and  didn't  have  access  to  a  voting                                                                    
     officer.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
8:49:11 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GRUENBERG  summarized, "So, this would  also allow                                                               
the  person with  the power  of attorney  to register  the absent                                                               
voter."                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
8:49:25 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEATON clarified that Representative  Lynn wanted to ensure                                                               
that  the specificity  of  Representative Gruenberg's  [upcoming]                                                               
amendment includes  a general or  specific power of  attorney, so                                                               
that one would not preclude the other.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
8:49:36 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS. GLASIER  turned to Section  13, regarding absentee  voting by                                                               
mail  and electronic  transmission.   In response  to a  question                                                               
from Representative  Gatto, she explained that  although Sections                                                               
11 and  13 look similar, the  one deals with AS  15.20.081, while                                                               
the other deals with AS 15.20.066.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
8:51:28 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS. GLASIER, in response to  a question from Representative Gatto                                                               
regarding  signatures  in  remote  locations,  offered  examples,                                                               
including people who are in remote  logging camps and can't get a                                                               
witness.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
8:52:19 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS.  GLASIER  returned  to the  sectional  analysis  and  offered                                                               
details on:   Section 14,  regarding absentee voting by  mail and                                                               
electronic transmission; Section 15,  regarding "by mail" voting;                                                               
and Section 16, regarding standards for voting machines.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
8:54:24 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  GRUENBERG, regarding  Section  16,  spoke of  the                                                               
possibility  of  offering an  amendment  that  would make  voting                                                               
available  in  other  languages   in  appropriate  areas  only  -                                                               
specifically Yupik and Spanish.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
8:55:36 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS. GLASIER  addressed Section  17, regarding  qualifications for                                                               
Independent candidates for President  and Vice President, and the                                                               
selection of electors.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
8:56:18 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GARDNER asked what the  rationale was for making a                                                               
requirement for Independent candidates  that would not be applied                                                               
to other candidates.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
8:56:26 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS. GLASIER said the idea was  not proposed by the committee, but                                                               
was formulated  during a committee  meeting, and she  deferred to                                                               
Representative Gruenberg for further details.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
8:56:57 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GRUENBERG said he would look into that.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
8:57:19 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS.   GLASIER,  in   response  to   a  follow-up   question  from                                                               
Representative  Gardner regarding  why  an Independent  candidate                                                               
would  ever  be treated  differently,  explained  that the  other                                                               
parties have  bi-laws filed with  the division and have  filed in                                                               
the  state,  whereas  often Independent  candidates  aren't  from                                                               
Alaska.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
8:57:52 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  SEATON  noted  that  [last   year's  House  State  Affairs                                                               
Standing  Committee] had  decided that  this  would be  a way  to                                                               
maintain contact with the person.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
8:58:34 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS. GLASIER  turned to  discussion of  Section 18,  regarding the                                                               
interpretation  of votes  cast, Section  19, regarding  duties of                                                               
electors, Section  20, regarding  petitions and  the form  of the                                                               
applications,   and   Section   21,   regarding   petitions   and                                                               
designation of sponsors.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
9:01:56 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE RAMRAS  mentioned a cruise ship  ballot initiative                                                               
regarding  head  tax  and  an  investigator  that  was  hired  to                                                               
validate signatures.   He  asked how "a  change like  this" would                                                               
"affect that process."                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
9:02:35 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS.  GLASIER  indicated  that this  change  wouldn't  affect  the                                                               
process whereby someone checks signatures.   She explained, "This                                                               
is an internal  mechanism for the division when  you're doing the                                                               
data entry, to  have ... two things  - a printed name  and a date                                                               
of  birth  -  helping  to   ensure  that  you  can  qualify  that                                                               
signature."    The  bill  does   not  include  any  provision  to                                                               
investigate whether all the signatures are true.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
9:04:00 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS. GLASIER, in response to  a request from Chair Seaton, defined                                                               
"sponsor" as the first group  of individuals that sign a petition                                                               
where law  sets out that  there shall  be at least  100 qualified                                                               
voters.  She  added, "Those are usually  considered the sponsors,                                                               
and then  three are  usually named  as a  committee."   This bill                                                               
would make  no changes as to  the number of sponsors  required or                                                               
committee number.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
9:04:43 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS. GLAISER, in response to  a question from Chair Seaton, walked                                                               
through the application process for  a petition and when the date                                                               
of birth  would be required.   She noted that one  concern that's                                                               
been heard is  how it will be possible to  discern if people were                                                               
actually registered  voters when  they signed  a petition,  or if                                                               
they  were  registered  only  by   the  time  the  booklets  were                                                               
submitted.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
9:06:01 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE RAMRAS said he respects  the division's efforts to                                                               
use  the   "lowest  common  denominator"   to  allow   people  to                                                               
participate.   Notwithstanding  that, he  expressed concern  that                                                               
adding  another qualifier  may perhaps  be adding  a chance  that                                                               
someone may not  qualify if they forget to fill  out one of them.                                                               
He  noted that  the four  qualifiers would  be: signature,  name,                                                               
address, and  date of  birth, and  he asked  if someone  would be                                                               
disqualified if he/she only answered three out of four.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
9:07:25 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS.  GLASIER said  that person  would  be disqualified;  however,                                                               
having the date of birth could  help identify a person better if,                                                               
for  example,  his/her  signature  is not  recognizable  and  the                                                               
address is barely legible.   She added that the division believes                                                               
that asking for  the date of birth is less  intrusive than asking                                                               
for a person's social security number.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
9:08:45 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  GRUENBERG said  if it's  true that  a person  who                                                               
forgets to include  his/her date of birth  would be disqualified,                                                               
then he shares Representative Ramras's concern.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
9:09:09 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GATTO asked if voting  information is private.  He                                                               
speculated  that if  the information  given on  an initiative  is                                                               
given to  someone who is  determined to overthrow  an initiative,                                                               
they would have access to some very private information.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
9:10:17 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS. GLASIER  said the  address, name, and  whether the  person is                                                               
qualified  as a  signatory is  available information.   Regarding                                                               
date of birth, she said that  usually numbers are better than the                                                               
written word.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
9:11:43 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEATON said he can see  why giving date of birth would help                                                               
the  division qualify  more signatures.   He  also said  he could                                                               
foresee how  someone may see  a date on  the line above  and just                                                               
put  today's date  rather  than a  date of  birth  and, thus,  be                                                               
disqualified.   He stated that he  is not certain where  he would                                                               
like to weigh  in on this issue, because it's  not clear-cut, and                                                               
it requires  balance.  He  suggested that the committee  think on                                                               
the issue until the next meeting.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
9:14:00 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS.  GLASIER,  in  response to  a  question  from  Representative                                                               
Gardner, reiterated that the name,  address, and whether or not a                                                               
person  is  qualified, are  the  only  things that  the  division                                                               
releases.  In  response to a question  from Representative Gatto,                                                               
she  confirmed that  that  information is  released  in a  report                                                               
through the division's database.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
9:16:03 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS.   GLASIER,   in   response    to   further   questions   from                                                               
Representative  Gatto regarding  the previously  mentioned cruise                                                               
ship  ballot initiative,  explained the  steps that  the division                                                               
takes to ensure privacy.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
9:17:53 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ELKINS interpreted that  the division is trying to                                                               
identify real people and eliminate fraud.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
9:18:22 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEATON said many people's  signatures are not legible, thus                                                               
the number  of identifiers are  limited.   If a person  goofs and                                                               
puts   his/her  mailing   address,  rather   than  the   required                                                               
residential address, that is another qualifier that's lost.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
9:18:53 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS. GLASIER noted, "Actually, in  current law, we don't even have                                                               
the printed  name to work with.   We get a  signature and address                                                               
on an  application, which does  make it  difficult for us."   The                                                               
bill would add both the date of birth and the printed name.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
9:19:41 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  LYNN   asked  how   the  division   identifies  a                                                               
duplicate signature.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
9:20:01 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS.  GLASIER said  during the  data entry  review and  process, a                                                               
signature will show  as duplicate.  She said  there's no penalty,                                                               
because people do forget.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
9:21:00 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE RAMRAS asked how long  it takes to qualify all the                                                               
signers for an  initiative and what some of  the other qualifiers                                                               
in other states are.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
9:21:23 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS.  GLASIER said  she is  not  familiar with  the other  state's                                                               
qualifiers, but  she said she  believes the division has  60 days                                                               
to process a petition.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
9:21:53 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE RAMRAS  remarked that the division  works hard and                                                               
it  must take  a long  time to  qualify so  many signatures.   He                                                               
asked what the failure rate is regarding those signatures.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
9:22:31 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS. GLASIER  said she would have  to find out from  her staff and                                                               
get back to Representative Ramras.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
9:23:08 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GRUENBERG  noted that  when a person  registers to                                                               
vote, he/she  puts down a  variety of identifiers,  including the                                                               
last four digits  of the social security number.   He opined that                                                               
the policy of state  should be to try to count  a signature if at                                                               
all possible, but  he wants to be certain that  people don't sign                                                               
twice.   Representative Gruenberg suggested choosing  other forms                                                               
of identification.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
9:24:48 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS. GLASIER  pointed out that  the date  of birth will  always be                                                               
consistent, whereas other forms may not be.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
9:25:26 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS.  GLASIER returned  to discussion  of the  sectional analysis.                                                               
She highlighted  Section 22, regarding petitions  and preparation                                                               
of petitions.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
9:26:37 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  GRUENBERG turned  to page  11, line  4 and  noted                                                               
that  there is  an  addition  of the  phrase  "the statement  of"                                                               
before "warning".  He said he thinks that's good.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
9:27:14 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS.  GLASIER  turned  to  Section  23,  regarding  petitions  and                                                               
qualifications  of circulators;  Section 24,  regarding petitions                                                               
and withdrawing  names from petitions; and  Section 25, regarding                                                               
petitions and certification of circulators.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
9:28:35 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GATTO  asked why anyone  who is a resident  of the                                                               
state should be excluded from signing a petition.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
9:29:28 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS.  GLASIER  said   it's  a  policy  call.     She  offered  her                                                               
understanding that  the reason that  a person has the  ability to                                                               
carry  a petition  without being  registered has  to do  with the                                                               
U.S. Supreme  Court decision, Buckley v.  American Constitutional                                                             
Law Foundation.   She said the division's  database only includes                                                             
registered voters.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
9:32:22 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE LYNN said  he has problem with  a nonvoter forcing                                                               
other people to vote on an issue by passing a petition around.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
9:33:31 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEATON  clarified that the  person who is not  qualified to                                                               
vote is allowed  to go around and ask qualified  voters to sign a                                                               
petition.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
9:34:07 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE RAMRAS  said his concern,  as one born  and raised                                                               
in Alaska, is that so many  people from outside of the state come                                                               
in with petitions.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
9:35:21 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GRUENBERG directed attention  to page 11, line 19,                                                               
of the bill, which read as follows:                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
                 (3) a resident of the state as                                                                                 
     determined under AS 15.05.020.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  GRUENBERG said  he would  pass around  a copy  of                                                               
that part of statute, if anyone was interested to see it.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
9:36:11 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS.  GLASIER  returned to  the  sectional  analysis and  reviewed                                                               
Section 26, regarding petitions and  the display of proposed law.                                                               
She offered details.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
9:38:38 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  GRUENBERG,   in  response  to  a   question  from                                                               
Representative Gatto  regarding language  in the  bill specifying                                                               
that the  director shall  provide each  election board  with five                                                               
copies of the  proposed law being initiated,  explained that that                                                               
is  interpreted as  requiring five,  but allowing  for more  than                                                               
five.                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
9:39:10 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  GRUENBERG spoke  of  regional  voting centers  in                                                               
other states.   He explained it's a new concept  that lets people                                                               
vote anywhere in  the city, and it's simple, cheap,  and easy for                                                               
voters.   He noted that  Ms. Glasier  was smiling in  response to                                                               
his comments.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
9:40:34 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS.  GLASIER highlighted  Section 27,  regarding referendums  and                                                               
the  form   of  applications,  and  Section   28,  regarding  the                                                               
referendum and the designation of sponsors.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
9:41:35 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GARDNER  noted that  Section 27 requires  that the                                                               
three  designated  sponsors  must  provide  their  name,  mailing                                                               
address,  and  signatures, while  Section  28  requires that  the                                                               
additional sponsors also provide their  date of birth.  She asked                                                               
for an explanation.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
9:42:11 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS. GLASIER clarified that it was  just an oversight on her part;                                                               
in the  printed law,  the designated  sponsors must  also provide                                                               
their date of birth.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
9:42:35 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  GARDNER asked  if  that should  be  added to  the                                                               
language in Section 27, paragraph (4) of the bill.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
9:42:56 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS. GLASIER said  it could be added; however,  the legal drafters                                                               
of the bill thought that the way it was written was sufficient.                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
9:43:28 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS. GLASIER  returned to the  sectional analysis.   She reviewed:                                                               
Section 29,  regarding referendums and preparation  of petitions;                                                               
Section   30,  regarding   referendums   and  qualifications   of                                                               
circulators; Section  31, regarding referendums  and circulation;                                                               
Section  32, regarding  referendums  and manners  of signing  and                                                               
withdrawing   names  from   petitions;   Section  33,   regarding                                                               
referendums  and certification  of circulators;  and Section  34,                                                               
regarding referendums and the display of the act being referred.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
9:46:25 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  GATTO, referring  to his  previous discussion  of                                                               
the number of copies required,  opined that it is inconsistent to                                                               
say a  specific number  on one  line and  mean "at  least," while                                                               
using  the words  "at  least" before  another  number on  another                                                               
line.                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
9:47:09 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  GRUENBERG said  it's  not necessary  to make  the                                                               
language the same, but he wouldn't oppose doing so.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
9:47:44 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE LYNN concurred.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
9:48:10 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  GATTO moved  Conceptual Amendment  1, to  add "at                                                               
least" before  any required number  of copies [found  in Sections                                                               
26, 34, and 43].                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEATON clarified Conceptual Amendment 1.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  SEATON asked  if  there was  any  objection to  Conceptual                                                               
Amendment 1.   No objections  were stated;  therefore, Conceptual                                                               
Amendment 1 was so ordered.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
9:51:31 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS.   GLASIER  returned   to  the   sectional   analysis.     She                                                               
highlighted:   Section 35, regarding  recall and the form  of the                                                               
application; Section 36, regarding  the recall and designation of                                                               
sponsors;  Section 37,  regarding the  recall and  preparation of                                                               
petitions; Section 38, regarding the  recall and the statement of                                                               
warning;   Section   39,    regarding   the   qualifications   of                                                               
circulators; and Section 40, regarding recall and circulation.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
9:54:06 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE   GATTO  questioned   the   word  "penalties"   in                                                               
Subsection 40 of the sectional analysis.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
9:54:33 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS. GLASIER explained  that it refers to  Section 40, [subsection                                                               
(d)], which read as follows:                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
           (d) A person or organization that violates                                                                           
       (b) or (c) of this section is guilty of a class B                                                                        
     misdemeanor.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
9:55:05 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GRUENBERG asked if a  person paid a circulator $2,                                                               
[when Section  40, subparagraph (b) prohibits  accepting payments                                                               
greater than $1], would each dollar be a separate offense?                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
9:56:12 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS. GLASIER said she would defer that question to an attorney.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
9:56:47 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  SEATON asked  Representative  Gruenberg to  check and  get                                                               
back  to  the  committee  at  the  next  meeting  regarding  that                                                               
language.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
9:57:07 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GRUENBERG  said he doesn't recall  whether class B                                                               
misdemeanors have a  fine.  He noted that normally  it is a group                                                               
that distributes  petitions, and a  group would be  considered an                                                               
organization.   Organizations, he continued, are  not imprisoned.                                                               
He said he would review the issue.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
9:58:03 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GATTO said  whenever there's a way  for someone to                                                               
defeat the law, there's someone there to try it.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEATON said, "We really need  to look at the two potentials                                                               
and what  those could lead  to - both the  individual circulator,                                                               
as well as the state."                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
9:58:26 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS.  GLASIER  responded, "That  would  appear  in initiative  and                                                               
referendum sections of law, as  well, so any corrections we make,                                                               
we want to be inclusive."                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
[HB 94 was heard and held.]                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
ADJOURNMENT                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
There being no  further business before the  committee, the House                                                               
State  Affairs  Standing  Committee   meeting  was  adjourned  at                                                               
9:59:28 AM.                                                                                                                   

Document Name Date/Time Subjects