Legislature(2017 - 2018)GRUENBERG 120

02/22/2018 03:15 PM STATE AFFAIRS

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* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
*+ HJR 27 CONST. AM: TERM LIMITS OF LEGISLATORS TELECONFERENCED
Heard & Held
*+ HB 310 MARRIAGE AND MINIMUM AGE FOR MARRIAGE TELECONFERENCED
Heard & Held
-- Public Testimony --
+ Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled TELECONFERENCED
+= HB 152 ORGANIZED MILITIA; AK ST. DEFENSE FORCE TELECONFERENCED
Moved CSHB 152(STA) Out of Committee
                    ALASKA STATE LEGISLATURE                                                                                  
             HOUSE STATE AFFAIRS STANDING COMMITTEE                                                                           
                       February 22, 2018                                                                                        
                           3:20 p.m.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Representative Jonathan Kreiss-Tomkins, Chair                                                                                   
Representative Gabrielle LeDoux, Vice Chair                                                                                     
Representative Chris Tuck                                                                                                       
Representative Adam Wool                                                                                                        
Representative Chris Birch                                                                                                      
Representative Gary Knopp                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Representative DeLena Johnson                                                                                                   
Representative Andy Josephson (alternate)                                                                                       
Representative Chuck Kopp (alternate)                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE JOINT RESOLUTION NO. 27                                                                                                   
Proposing amendments to the Constitution of the State of Alaska                                                                 
relating to terms of legislators.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     - HEARD & HELD                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 310                                                                                                              
"An Act relating to the minimum age of eligibility for                                                                          
marriage."                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     - HEARD & HELD                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 152                                                                                                              
"An Act relating to the organized militia; and relating to the                                                                  
authority of the adjutant general."                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
     - MOVED CSHB 152(STA) OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
PREVIOUS COMMITTEE ACTION                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
BILL: HJR 27                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE: CONST. AM: TERM LIMITS OF LEGISLATORS                                                                              
SPONSOR(s): REPRESENTATIVE(s) KITO                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
01/12/18       (H)       PREFILE RELEASED 1/12/18                                                                               
01/16/18       (H)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
01/16/18       (H)       STA, JUD, FIN                                                                                          
02/22/18       (H)       STA AT 3:15 PM GRUENBERG 120                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
BILL: HB 310                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE: MARRIAGE AND MINIMUM AGE FOR MARRIAGE                                                                              
SPONSOR(s): REPRESENTATIVE(s) CLAMAN                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
01/26/18       (H)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
01/26/18       (H)       STA, JUD                                                                                               
02/22/18       (H)       STA AT 3:15 PM GRUENBERG 120                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
BILL: HB 152                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE: ORGANIZED MILITIA; AK ST. DEFENSE FORCE                                                                            
SPONSOR(s): MILITARY & VETERANS' AFFAIRS                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
03/06/17       (H)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
03/06/17       (H)       MLV, STA                                                                                               
03/14/17       (H)       MLV AT 1:00 PM GRUENBERG 120                                                                           
03/14/17       (H)       -- MEETING CANCELED --                                                                                 
03/23/17       (H)       MLV AT 1:00 PM GRUENBERG 120                                                                           
03/23/17       (H)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
03/23/17       (H)       MINUTE(MLV)                                                                                            
03/30/17       (H)       MLV AT 1:00 PM GRUENBERG 120                                                                           
03/30/17       (H)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
03/30/17       (H)       MINUTE(MLV)                                                                                            
04/04/17       (H)       MLV AT 1:00 PM GRUENBERG 120                                                                           
04/04/17       (H)       Moved CSHB 152(MLV) Out of Committee                                                                   
04/04/17       (H)       MINUTE(MLV)                                                                                            
04/05/17       (H)       MLV RPT CS(MLV) 3DP 2DNP 1NR                                                                           
04/05/17       (H)       DP: SPOHNHOLZ, PARISH, TUCK                                                                            
04/05/17       (H)       DNP: REINBOLD, SADDLER                                                                                 
04/05/17       (H)       NR: LEDOUX                                                                                             
05/09/17       (H)       STA AT 3:00 PM GRUENBERG 120                                                                           
05/09/17       (H)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
05/09/17       (H)       MINUTE(STA)                                                                                            
01/23/18       (H)       STA AT 3:00 PM GRUENBERG 120                                                                           
01/23/18       (H)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
01/23/18       (H)       MINUTE(STA)                                                                                            
01/25/18       (H)       STA AT 3:00 PM GRUENBERG 120                                                                           
01/25/18       (H)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
01/25/18       (H)       MINUTE(STA)                                                                                            
02/22/18       (H)       STA AT 3:15 PM GRUENBERG 120                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
WITNESS REGISTER                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SAM KITO                                                                                                         
Alaska State Legislature                                                                                                        
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Presented HJR 27, as prime sponsor.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
CAITLYN ELLIS, Staff                                                                                                            
Representative Sam Kito                                                                                                         
Alaska State Legislature                                                                                                        
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION  STATEMENT:   Answered questions  during the  hearing on                                                             
HJR 27, on behalf of Representative Kito, prime sponsor.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE MATT CLAMAN                                                                                                      
Alaska State Legislature                                                                                                        
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Introduced HB 310, as prime sponsor.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CERI GODINEZ, Staff                                                                                                             
Representative Matt Claman                                                                                                      
Alaska State Legislature                                                                                                        
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION   STATEMENT:     Presented   HB   310,   on  behalf   of                                                             
Representative Claman, prime sponsor.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
JEANNE SMOOT                                                                                                                    
Tahirih Justice Center (TJC)                                                                                                    
Washington D.C.                                                                                                                 
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified during the hearing on HB 310.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
KENDRA KLOSTER, Staff                                                                                                           
Representative Chris Tuck                                                                                                       
Alaska State Legislature                                                                                                        
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Presented the  committee substitute (CS) for                                                             
HB 152, Version  R, and explained the changes on  behalf of Chris                                                               
Tuck, prime sponsor.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
ACTION NARRATIVE                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
3:20:01 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  JONATHAN KREISS-TOMKINS  called  the  House State  Affairs                                                             
Standing   Committee    meeting   to    order   at    3:20   p.m.                                                               
Representatives  LeDoux, Wool,  Birch, Knopp,  and Kreiss-Tomkins                                                               
were present at  the call to order.   Representative Tuck arrived                                                               
as the meeting was in progress.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
          HJR 27-CONST. AM: TERM LIMITS OF LEGISLATORS                                                                      
                                                                                                                              
3:21:04 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KREISS-TOMKINS  announced that the first  order of business                                                               
would  be  HOUSE BILL  NO.  27,  HOUSE  JOINT RESOLUTION  NO.  27                                                               
Proposing amendments to  the Constitution of the  State of Alaska                                                               
relating to terms of legislators.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
3:21:17 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SAM  KITO, Alaska State Legislature,  relayed that                                                               
at  the National  Conference of  State  Legislatures (NCSL)  this                                                               
year, he attended a session on  term limits.  He offered that the                                                               
Alaska  State Legislature  has been  at a  crossroads during  the                                                               
past  ten  years;  it  has   been  operating  between  a  citizen                                                               
legislature  and  a  fulltime  legislature.   He  stated  that  a                                                               
citizen  legislature is  clearly defined  as having  members with                                                               
jobs and careers,  experience from outside the  legislature, or a                                                               
role to  play during the  Interim giving them  experience outside                                                               
the professional lawmaking  arena.  He said that  Alaska does not                                                               
have many  such legislators; the  perception is  that legislators                                                               
do become career politicians.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KITO relayed  that he had a  career in engineering                                                               
before  becoming a  legislator; he  expected it  to last  awhile,                                                               
then he  would do something  else before retirement.   He relayed                                                               
that  if  he serves  on  the  legislature  for twenty  years,  it                                                               
becomes his  career, and the  ideas he brings to  the legislature                                                               
are no longer fresh and relevant.   He posed the question:  "What                                                               
would our state  look like with a legislature that  had a regular                                                               
influx  of  new  ideas  and fresh  interest  in  the  legislative                                                               
process?"  He  said that he concluded that if  Alaska is going to                                                               
have a citizen  legislature, then it must  provide an opportunity                                                               
for new people to serve.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
3:23:52 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KITO  stated that  Alaska does have  good turnover                                                               
in the  legislature:  in the  Senate the average tenure  is about                                                               
nine  years; in  the House  the average  tenure is  slightly over                                                               
seven years.   He suggested that  for a regular infusion  [of new                                                               
members] and  not just  a major "switch  over", which  is typical                                                               
after reapportionment, it makes sense  to allow an individual the                                                               
opportunity to provide public service  to Alaska as a legislator,                                                               
then step aside  and allow a new person with  new ideas to serve.                                                               
He maintained that his proposed  resolution does not constitute a                                                               
prohibition on serving.   It would allow someone to  serve for up                                                               
to four terms in the House  of Representatives or up to two terms                                                               
in the  Senate, before  either taking a  two-year break  from the                                                               
body in which  the person served or switching to  the other body.                                                               
This  would allow  for  sixteen years  of  continuous service  or                                                               
longer if  moving from the  House to the  Senate and back  to the                                                               
House.  He stated that one legislator has done that in the past.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KITO relayed  that the NCSL report  on term limits                                                               
states that one  of the reasons for not having  term limits is to                                                               
allow  legislators  to  build  knowledge   and  experience.    He                                                               
questioned why  an Alaska  legislator, representing  about 20,000                                                               
residents, needs more experience  than a governor, who represents                                                               
700,000  Alaskans and  administers all  the state  programs.   He                                                               
mentioned that  the governor is  limited to two  four-year terms,                                                               
or eight  years.  He said  that Alaska has determined  that to be                                                               
adequate for  serving as a  governor and  asked, "Why then  is it                                                               
appropriate for a legislator to  have significantly longer period                                                               
of service?"                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
3:26:54 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KITO continued  by  saying that  other states  do                                                               
have  people who  build  up  seniority and  move  up the  ladder;                                                               
however, Alaska generally has a  turnover of Senate President and                                                               
Speaker of the House every  two years; committee chairs generally                                                               
turnover every two  years; Alaska had a Speaker of  the House for                                                               
eight years,  but it  only happened  one time.   He  offered that                                                               
Alaska  is  already operating  as  if  there was  a  term-limited                                                               
legislature; the average length of  service is about eight years;                                                               
and  there is  turnover in  the committees,  which suggests  that                                                               
knowledge in a  committee area does not appear to  be as critical                                                               
in a state the  size of Alaska.  He asked,  "Why not provide that                                                               
opportunity for other  Alaskans to participate?"   He opined that                                                               
the other  choice is to  not have  a full citizen  legislature in                                                               
which  individuals  gather  their   own  experiences  during  the                                                               
Interim  and bring  them "to  the table."   In  that case  Alaska                                                               
would be  considering the possibility of  a fulltime legislature,                                                               
paying the  legislators a fulltime  salary, expecting them  to do                                                               
fulltime work,  and having legislators with  twenty-plus years in                                                               
public service.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
3:29:46 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  KREIS-TOMKINS  asked  for  the  results  of  the  advisory                                                               
question [on term limits] on the 1998 Alaska ballot.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
3:30:00 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CAITLYN  ELLIS,  Staff,  Representative Sam  Kito,  Alaska  State                                                               
Legislature,  replied that  in the  1998  election, 50.2  percent                                                               
voted  in  support  of  term  limits [Measure  7];  in  the  1994                                                               
election,  almost  63  percent  voted in  favor  of  term  limits                                                               
[Measure 4]; and  in the 1996 election, the  affirmative vote for                                                               
term  limits [Measure  4]  was  54.5 percent.    The earlier  two                                                               
advisory  votes were  related to  Congressional term  limits; the                                                               
1998  advisory vote  was much  closer than  those of  the earlier                                                               
elections.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE BIRCH stated that he  advocated for term limits in                                                               
the past but  was dissuaded because of the  seniority of [former]                                                               
Alaska U.S. Senator Ted Stevens  and the benefits of seniority at                                                               
the  congressional   level.    He  mentioned   that  Alaska  U.S.                                                               
Representative  Don Young  is  now  "Dean of  the  House"; he  is                                                               
currently   the  longest   serving   member  of   the  House   of                                                               
Representatives.    He  opined   that  there  are  advantages  to                                                               
seniority at  the congressional  level; Arctic  National Wildlife                                                               
Refuge (ANWR) opening [for development] is evidence of that.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE BIRCH  relayed that  he is in  his second  year of                                                               
his first term  and is one of 15 new  members, which represent 25                                                               
percent  of the  60-member  legislature.   He  said  that in  any                                                               
business, a 25 percent turnover  would be significant.  He stated                                                               
that he is  struck by the fact  that the voters are  doing a good                                                               
job of  limiting the terms  of legislators.   He offered  that in                                                               
respect  to legislators  having outside  employment, he  couldn't                                                               
agree more.   He  stated that  he was  deeply disappointed  to be                                                               
"drug  back" into  special session  four times  under the  "heavy                                                               
hand" of  special session  construction.   He asserted  that such                                                               
circumstances  decimate   any  ability  to  maintain   a  job  or                                                               
business.   He  asked, "Why  do we  think we  need to  do a  term                                                               
limit, if we have a 25 percent turnover in the body?"                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
3:32:43 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KITO   acknowledged  that  there   is  consistent                                                               
turnover  in the  legislative body  but maintained  that when  he                                                               
became a  representative, he decided that  he did not want  to be                                                               
there  for   twenty  years,  which  would   discourage  a  couple                                                               
generations of  individuals in  his community  who might  want to                                                               
participate in the  public process at the legislative  level.  He                                                               
offered  that if  an individual  knows  that the  maximum time  a                                                               
Representative can be  in the House is eight  years, he/she could                                                               
be  accruing experience  on the  assembly, working  on non-profit                                                               
boards,  all the  while knowing  that the  legislative seat  will                                                               
change in  his/her working lifetime.   A person could  prepare to                                                               
run for  office and be ready  when the time comes,  as opposed to                                                               
guessing  when the  [sitting] Representative  will leave  office.                                                               
He stated that  if he is not term-limited and  keeps his seat for                                                               
twenty years,  two to two  and a half generations  of individuals                                                               
in  his community  who might  be wonderful  legislators would  be                                                               
forced  to move  to a  different community  to serve  as a  state                                                               
Representative.  He maintained that  HJR 27 would create a better                                                               
pool of potential  candidates coming up through the  ranks - ones                                                               
who  will be  ready  to serve  and provide  public  service -  as                                                               
opposed interested people who do not have a chance.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
3:35:04 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KNOPP stated  that  he has  never been  adamantly                                                               
opposed to term limits; when  he served in local government, term                                                               
limits  were implemented;  he termed  out  in six  years and  was                                                               
elected to  the House of  Representatives during his  third term.                                                               
He  mentioned   that  Representative  Kito  was   addressing  two                                                               
different issues  - career politicians and  citizen legislatures.                                                               
He  said that  even if  HJR 27  passed, it  would not  ensure the                                                               
state would  have citizen legislators.   He offered  that because                                                               
the House  districts have elections  every two years,  the public                                                               
has every  opportunity to run;  nothing prevents those  of future                                                               
generations  from  running  against a  representative  every  two                                                               
years.                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KNOPP  mentioned  the  power  of  incumbency  and                                                               
maintained that  while there is  some validity to that,  there is                                                               
also validity in  the fact that citizens recognize  and value the                                                               
experience that  a Representative  has gained.   A Representative                                                               
who spends  two years  on the House  Labor and  Commerce Standing                                                               
Committee,  two  years  on  the   House  State  Affairs  Standing                                                               
Committee,  two   years  on  the   House  Special   Committee  on                                                               
Education, and two  years on the House  Finance Committee becomes                                                               
very well rounded but then is  termed out.  He offered that there                                                               
is "good and bad" in the proposal.   He asked about the length of                                                               
time a Senator  would be required to "sit out"  versus the length                                                               
of time  a Representative would  be required  to sit out,  if not                                                               
deciding  to run  for  the other  body.   He  concluded that  the                                                               
proposed resolution offers both opportunities and concerns.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KITO replied that the  "sitting out" period is two                                                               
years, which  would be true  for both  the House and  the Senate.                                                               
He   reminded   the  committee   that   a   Senate  term   in   a                                                               
reapportionment  year is  a two-year  term; therefore,  a Senator                                                               
sitting out in 2010 could run for that Senate seat in 2012.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KNOPP  reiterated his  comment about the  level of                                                               
experience gained.   He also  mentioned that a legislator  who is                                                               
in the  minority for  six to  eight years  does not  have his/her                                                               
true "voice" in the legislature, which is another concern.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KITO  replied that  his  predecessor  was in  the                                                               
minority  for fifteen  years and  never chaired  a committee  yet                                                               
served her constituents very well.   He mentioned that Alaska has                                                               
many legislators  that only serve  two, four, or six  years; they                                                               
are effective;  in the State of  Alaska, since it is  so small, a                                                               
freshman majority member can chair  a committee; therefore, rapid                                                               
learning can occur  with little experience.  He said  in that way                                                               
the situation in  Alaska is different than in  many other states;                                                               
people  with little  experience can  be Speaker  of the  House in                                                               
his/her second  term or chair  of the House Finance  Committee in                                                               
his/her first term.  He  maintained that even the shorter serving                                                               
legislators  are representing  their  districts as  well [as  the                                                               
longer serving  legislators], because they have  opportunities to                                                               
participate in  leadership positions.   He added that  the intent                                                               
of  the  proposed resolution  is  to  bring  new ideas  into  the                                                               
legislature  and provide  more opportunities  for individuals  to                                                               
prepare for and participate in state service.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
3:40:22 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  WOOL  stated  that   he  generally  supports  the                                                               
concept of term  limits; however, there are pros and  cons to it.                                                               
He  mentioned  that it  is  good  to  have  a healthy  amount  of                                                               
turnover;  it is  difficult for  a legislator  to maintain  a job                                                               
outside of the legislature, especially  if session lasts 180-plus                                                               
days; and it wouldn't  be possible to work at a  regular job.  He                                                               
added that owning one's own business makes it possible.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  WOOL referred  to the  average length  of service                                                               
for those in  the Senate - 9.3  years - and those in  the House -                                                               
7.2 years.   He asked for the  ranges of lengths of  service.  He                                                               
offered  that there  are legislators  who serve  for two  to four                                                               
years,  and  those  who  serve for  fourteen  years,  making  the                                                               
average seven or  eight.  There may be many  new legislators, but                                                               
some are replacing  ones who have served many  years and retired.                                                               
He concluded  it is good to  have turnover; it exists  on its own                                                               
with  the election  cycle; some  legislators do  "get entrenched"                                                               
and will  never lose unless  they choose not  to run.   He agreed                                                               
that  turnover  at   the  leadership  level  is   also  good;  as                                                               
legislators serve  longer and "rise  to the  top," it is  good to                                                               
have  turnovers to  bring in  different outlooks.   He  concluded                                                               
that under  HJR 27,  allowing for  eight years  in the  House and                                                               
eight years in the Senate, which  adds up to sixteen years, would                                                               
be a substantial period, and with  two years off, time of service                                                               
could be longer.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KITO  mentioned that  for all  serving legislators                                                               
since  statehood, the  terms  vary from  one  year to  thirty-two                                                               
years.                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
3:43:03 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE LEDOUX mentioned that  California has term limits,                                                               
and she has heard that often  a Senator and a Representative will                                                               
trade positions back and forth.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KITO  answered that  he  cannot  confirm if  that                                                               
occurs.  He  offered that California is one of  two states with a                                                               
fulltime   legislature;    consequently,   Representatives   earn                                                               
$100,000 per year and have staffs of  15.  He added that the same                                                               
is  true  for  New  York  State.   He  said  that  California  is                                                               
different  from Alaska  in that  each  House district  represents                                                               
500,000 people;  getting to know  a California district  is quite                                                               
different  from  getting   to  know  an  Alaska   district.    He                                                               
maintained that after  four and a half years, most  people in his                                                               
district would  recognize him as  their Representative  and could                                                               
come up  to him to talk;  that would not  be the case in  a state                                                               
like California or New York.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE LEDOUX relayed  that the point she  was making was                                                               
that  if Representatives  and Senators  transfer back  and forth,                                                               
then the idea that the  proposed resolution would give new people                                                               
options  for serving  would not  be correct.   She  asked whether                                                               
this, in fact, occurs in the California legislature.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KITO responded  that he would attempt  to find out                                                               
if that  is true.   He  added that his  point is  that if  one is                                                               
representing  a House  district  of 500,000  people  or a  Senate                                                               
district of  a million people,  then it  is more likely  that the                                                               
legislator has  only name recognition among  his constituents, as                                                               
opposed to them understanding who  he/she is.  He maintained that                                                               
in  Alaska, the  scenario Representative  LeDoux described  could                                                               
happen, but  is not  likely.   He asserted that  if he  served an                                                               
eight-year term in  the House, people would be aware  of when his                                                               
term ended  and could prepare  to run for  that seat in  the next                                                               
election.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE LEDOUX  asked why  Representative Kito  thought it                                                               
would be unlikely  in Alaska for a Senator  and Representative to                                                               
switch back and forth between the legislative seats.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KITO stated  his  reasoning as  follows:   Alaska                                                               
districts  are  much smaller,  and  the  individuals running  for                                                               
office  are  better  known  in   their  districts.    In  Alaska,                                                               
constituent    relations   are    important.       An   Anchorage                                                               
Representative  who returns  to the  Anchorage caucus,  meets and                                                               
talks with a  considerable number of Anchorage  residents who are                                                               
politically active in the district.   He reiterated that Alaskans                                                               
know  their representatives  better;  therefore,  the trading  of                                                               
legislative seats would not be an issue in Alaska.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
3:46:52 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE   LEDOUX   asked   how  a   small   district   and                                                               
constituents   knowing  their   legislators  would   prevent  the                                                               
representative  and  senator from  trading  seats,  if they  both                                                               
wanted to keep their jobs.   She added that since the legislators                                                               
are so  well known by their  constituents, it would be  easier to                                                               
trade seats and more likely to happen.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KITO  offered his district  as an example:   under                                                               
HJR 27,  when he comes to  the end of his  eight-year term, there                                                               
will be people interested in running  for his seat; it could be a                                                               
Senator,  but nevertheless,  it  is an  open  office; people  can                                                               
express  interest in  the  seat.   He  maintained  that with  the                                                               
smaller population and  an open seat, there  is greater potential                                                               
for someone  to come  forward and  run for  that seat  than there                                                               
would be for an unknown person  in a 500,000-person district.  He                                                               
added  that the  latter would  be like  running for  governor [of                                                               
Alaska]  every  four  years, then  switching  off  to  lieutenant                                                               
governor and back.   He asserted that California  is a "different                                                               
animal" than  Alaska; Alaska is  unique, and  this is one  of the                                                               
areas in which its unique is positive.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
3:48:41 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE TUCK  referred to page  1, lines 9-10, of  HJR 27,                                                               
which read,  "No person  who has served  as a  representative for                                                               
four full or partial successive  terms shall again be eligible to                                                               
hold that  office" and asked the  sponsor if he would  be willing                                                               
to change "that office" to "any office".                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KITO responded  that the change could  be a policy                                                               
call  of   the  legislature;  the   legislature  may   only  want                                                               
individuals to serve  for eight years and no  longer; some states                                                               
have placed a prohibition for serving  more than eight years.  He                                                               
mentioned that  in a local  election in  Alaska, one can  sit out                                                               
one term and return to service;  many people do that; Alaska also                                                               
allows  its governor  to sit  out  a term  and serve  again.   He                                                               
offered  that  Alaska  has not  historically  supported  a  total                                                               
prohibition.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE TUCK  responded that  his suggestion  would retain                                                               
the  two-year  hiatus but  disallow  transferring  from House  to                                                               
Senate and back to House.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KITO suggested  that disallowing  someone to  run                                                               
for one  body or  the other constitutes  an undue  restriction on                                                               
that person's civil rights.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  TUCK maintained  that the  language change  would                                                               
prevent someone from switching back  and forth between bodies, as                                                               
described by Representative LeDoux.   He restated his suggestion:                                                               
once someone serves  in the legislature for  the specified number                                                               
of terms, whether it is the  House or Senate, he/she must sit out                                                               
for two years before serving again.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KITO asked  for confirmation  that Representative                                                               
Tuck  is suggesting  a mandatory  two years  after an  eight-year                                                               
term before the individual could run for the House or Senate.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE TUCK replied yes.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KITO said  that would  be  a policy  call of  the                                                               
legislature.   He suggested  that there  may be  some awkwardness                                                               
regarding the four-year Senate seats.   If someone terms out from                                                               
a  four-year seat,  and it  remains a  four-year seat,  then that                                                               
person would  not be able to  run for that Senate  seat but could                                                               
run for a House seat after two years off.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
3:51:43 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  WOOL  asked  for clarification  of  the  proposed                                                               
resolution:  an  individual could serve eight years  in the house                                                               
-  four terms  - and  immediately serve  two Senate  terms, which                                                               
would total sixteen consecutive years in the legislature.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KITO  confirmed  that  as  HJR  27  is  currently                                                               
written, that is  correct.  An individual can move  from one body                                                               
to the  other, but to  run again for  the same body,  he/she must                                                               
take a two-year break.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE WOOL  asked how  many states  have term  limits in                                                               
their state legislatures.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KITO responded that  currently there are 15 states                                                               
with  active term  limits; the  requirements  are different  from                                                               
state to state.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  WOOL commented  that in  a term  limit situation,                                                               
someone coming  to the end  of his/her term, knowing  that he/she                                                               
cannot  run  for  reelection, may  legislate  differently  during                                                               
his/her last term  - much like a "lame duck"  U.S. President.  He                                                               
added, "That's probably not a bad thing."                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KITO  responded  that  has been  argued  in  both                                                               
directions.   In a lame  duck incumbency situation, a  person may                                                               
take edgier or more challenging  actions - ones that he/she would                                                               
not  take  if  facing  reelection.   In  that  way  it  could  be                                                               
positive.  He said that on the  other hand, it has been said that                                                               
an incumbent  does not  have to  consider a  constituent's issues                                                               
because in a  year's time he/she won't be in  office.  This would                                                               
be a negative outcome.  He  concluded that sorting out the "pros"                                                               
and "cons" of this argument is part of a legislator's job.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
3:53:50 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KREISS-TOMKINS announced that HJR 27 would be held over.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  KREISS-TOMKINS commented  that uncertainty  is a  limiting                                                               
factor for people who might  seek legislative office; not knowing                                                               
when the  seat will  be open  can be  a handicap;  sometimes even                                                               
retirements are  announced at the last  moment; therefore, people                                                               
seeking office are  not empowered to participate in  a fully open                                                               
way.                                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
          HB 310-MARRIAGE AND MINIMUM AGE FOR MARRIAGE                                                                      
                                                                                                                              
3:54:46 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KREISS-TOMKINS  announced that  the next order  of business                                                               
would be HOUSE BILL NO. 310,  "An Act relating to the minimum age                                                               
of eligibility for marriage."                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
3:55:07 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
The committee took a brief at-ease at 3:55 p.m.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
3:55:48 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE MATT  CLAMAN, Alaska  State Legislature,  as prime                                                               
sponsor of HB  310, relayed that by raising  the minimum marriage                                                               
age in Alaska  to 18 with exceptions only  for emancipated minors                                                               
and active military members, HB 310  would put an end to what the                                                               
U.S. has  denounced as a "human  rights abuse."  He  continued by                                                               
saying that  marriage before the  age of 18 correlates  with poor                                                               
life outcomes,  including discontinued education,  increased risk                                                               
of psychiatric  disorders, and  increased risk  of poverty.   For                                                               
those who are happily married at  an earlier age or who are close                                                               
to  someone who  married  young, the  proposed legislation  might                                                               
seem like it would prevent  young people from marrying the person                                                               
whom they love.   He said that in fact,  the proposed legislation                                                               
would  delay rather  than  prevent the  unions  of those  looking                                                               
forward to decades of happy marriage.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  CLAMAN  referred   to  the  Legislative  Research                                                               
Services  (LRS)  Report  18.018 dated  9/15/17,  entitled  "State                                                               
Marriages   Involving  Minors,   2000-2015,"   included  in   the                                                               
committee packet.  He stated that  Table 1 in the report reflects                                                               
the  number of  Alaska marriages  involving minors  that occurred                                                               
from 2000 to  2015.  Table 1 indicates that  the number of minors                                                               
getting married in Alaska  is in decline - from 73  in 2000 to 17                                                               
in  2015.   He maintained  that by  asking an  increasingly small                                                               
number  of  people to  wait  a  couple  of years  before  getting                                                               
married,  Alaska would  protect minors,  who because  of external                                                               
pressure and lack  of legal rights, might  find themselves forced                                                               
into marriages that they are later unable to leave.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  CLAMAN relayed  that 70-80  percent of  marriages                                                               
involving children end  in divorce; and when they  do, because of                                                               
limited  education and  work opportunities,  former child  brides                                                               
and grooms  have few  options for  supporting themselves  and, in                                                               
many cases,  supporting their  children.   He maintained  that in                                                               
those instances, the economic burden falls to the state.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE CLAMAN maintained  that under HB 310,  the hope is                                                               
to bring  an end to  a human rights  abuse that affects  not just                                                               
individuals but society.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
3:57:40 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CERI  GODINEZ, Staff,  Representative Matt  Claman, Alaska  State                                                               
Legislature, on  behalf of  Representative Claman,  prime sponsor                                                               
of  HB 310,  relayed that  the  intent of  HB 310  is to  protect                                                               
children  from  finding  themselves in  lifelong  commitments  in                                                               
which they have  no say and cannot escape.   She paraphrased from                                                               
the sponsor  statement, included  in the committee  packet, which                                                               
read as follows:                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     Under current  law, Alaskan  minors cannot  vote, serve                                                                    
     on  a  jury,  purchase  a fire  arm,  open  a  checking                                                                    
     account  on   their  own,  file  a   domestic  violence                                                                    
     protective  order on  their own,  or  work without  the                                                                    
     consent of  their parents; yet  they are old  enough to                                                                    
     be married with parental approval  or a court ruling in                                                                    
     the case  of those under 16.  This places a child  in a                                                                    
     particularly vulnerable  situation where they  could be                                                                    
     coerced into  marrying an  abuser. If  the relationship                                                                    
     is  abusive,  leaving  their spouse  may  be  extremely                                                                    
     difficult.  House  Bill  310 would  protect  minors  by                                                                    
     requiring  them  to  have the  same  rights  as  adults                                                                    
     before getting married.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
MS.  GODINEZ continued  with a  sectional analysis  of HB  310 as                                                               
follows:  Section  1 of HB 310 [page 1,  lines 8-12] requires for                                                               
marriage a person to be 18  years of age or older, an emancipated                                                               
minor,  or a  member of  the U.S.  Armed Forces  on active  duty.                                                               
Section 2  [page 1, line  14-15] relates to "arrival  at majority                                                               
upon  marriage" and  amends AS  25.20.020  to say  that a  person                                                               
reaches  the age  of majority  when he/she  marries.   Section 3,                                                               
[page 2, line 4] repeals AS  25.05.171, which allows minors 16 to                                                               
18 years of  age to marry with parental consent  and minors 14 to                                                               
15  years of  age to  marry with  judicial approval  and parental                                                               
consent.   Section  4 [page  2, lines  5-8] states  that the  Act                                                               
applies to people married on or after the effective date.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
3:59:17 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE LEDOUX  referred to  page 1,  line 9,  which read,                                                               
"emancipated under  AS 09.55.590",  and asked for  the definition                                                               
of "emancipated."                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
MS. GODINEZ  answered that "emancipated"  means the person  is 16                                                               
years of age or older,  living separately from his/her parents or                                                               
guardians, and can prove himself/herself to be self-supporting.                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  LEDOUX  inquired  as  to what  was  involved  for                                                               
emancipation; she  asked why a  minor wouldn't just  petition for                                                               
emancipation [to marry].                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
MS.  GODINEZ expressed  her understanding  that under  HB 310,  a                                                               
minor  could  seek  emancipation  and  if  successful,  file  for                                                               
marriage.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE LEDOUX  asked if  that is  a loophole  that almost                                                               
subsumes  the  proposed  legislation;  the  minor  would  not  be                                                               
required   to  be   age  18   but  could   simply  petition   for                                                               
emancipation.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE CLAMAN  explained that the difference  between the                                                               
two is as follows:  to get  emancipated one needs to have a court                                                               
hearing  with a  judge  to determine  if  the qualifications  for                                                               
emancipation  are met;  under HB  310, one  can get  married with                                                               
parental consent without proving self-sufficiency.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE LEDOUX asked for the  number of children under age                                                               
16 who are married in Alaska each year.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
MS. GODINEZ  replied that  the number each  year is  between zero                                                               
and one.  She clarified that  someone who is emancipated has most                                                               
of the legal  rights of an adult.  She  mentioned that the intent                                                               
of  HB 310  is to  ensure that  people entering  marriage are  on                                                               
equal legal footing with their spouses.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
4:02:14 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE LEDOUX asked  whether those who are  16 through 18                                                               
years of  age and get  married are marrying against  their wills.                                                               
She related that she  has a friend who was married  at age 17 and                                                               
has  been married  for  30  years; the  friend  had her  parents'                                                               
permission; and she wasn't forced to marry.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MS.  GODINEZ  responded  that  there are  many  cases  of  people                                                               
happily married  at age 16.   The proposed legislation  would ask                                                               
those people to wait a couple of  years so that in the rare cases                                                               
in  which  someone is  being  forced  into marriage  by  external                                                               
pressure  from their  families or  other  parties, that  marriage                                                               
would be prevented.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE LEDOUX  summarized by  saying that  although there                                                               
are many  cases in which  people get married  at age 16  who have                                                               
workable  marriages, HB  310 proposes  that they  forego marriage                                                               
for two  years because of  the extremely rare incidence  in which                                                               
someone is forced into marriage.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE CLAMAN  referred to Table  1 of the LRS  Report to                                                               
point out that there are very  few people getting married at ages                                                               
16 and 17, and of those,  the clear majority get divorced and are                                                               
left in  very poor  financial conditions  due to  low functioning                                                               
during the marriage.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
4:04:53 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE BIRCH cited  the LRS Report to point  out that the                                                               
number of marriages  of those age 17 and under  decreased from 73                                                               
in 2000 to 14 in 2015; it decreased  to zero for the 15 and under                                                               
age group; and there was only 1  in the 15 and under age group in                                                               
the most recent  five years shown on the chart.   He offered that                                                               
half of marriages end up in  divorce regardless of age.  He asked                                                               
whether  minors could  be married  in another  state and  have it                                                               
recognized in Alaska.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE CLAMAN  expressed his belief that  under the "Full                                                               
Faith and Credit Clause" [U.S.  Constitution, Article IV, Section                                                               
1]  a marriage  in Nevada,  for example,  would be  recognized in                                                               
Alaska, if legal in Nevada.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BIRCH  asked  whether   two  people,  who  cannot                                                               
legally  be married  in Alaska,  could travel  to another  state,                                                               
like Nevada,  where it is  permissible to  be married at  age 16,                                                               
then return to Alaska to live.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE CLAMAN  offered that  he believes  that to  be the                                                               
case;  under  the  Full  Faith  and Credit  Clause  of  the  U.S.                                                               
Constitution, Alaska  would have  to recognize the  marriage that                                                               
occurred in Nevada.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BIRCH  asked  whether  there  are  any  religious                                                               
issues  associated with  the proposed  legislation or  whether it                                                               
would  violate any  religious jurisdiction.    He clarified,  "Is                                                               
there a religious exemption?"                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
MS.  GODINEZ responded  that  the sponsor  has  not received  any                                                               
opposition from religious minorities.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
4:08:43 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KNOPP referred  to page 1, lines 11-12,  of HB 310                                                               
and  asked  if  there  is  anyone under  age  18  in  the  active                                                               
military.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  CLAMAN   relayed  that  with   parental  consent,                                                               
someone can join the military at  age 17.  The military exemption                                                               
is  included  for the  occasion  of  someone being  deployed  and                                                               
wanting  to   marry  his/her  sweetheart  before   leaving.    He                                                               
maintained that  there is considerable history  of people getting                                                               
married  just  before  deployment; there  are  spousal  benefits,                                                               
which is an important factor.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KNOPP asked  about the language change  on page 1,                                                               
lines  4-5:   the deletion  of "one  man and  one woman"  and the                                                               
addition of "two natural persons".                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  CLAMAN  explained  that was  recommended  because                                                               
that is what the U.S. Constitution requires.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
4:10:32 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE WOOL  asked whether under the  military exemption,                                                               
someone  could enroll  in the  military at  age 17  with parental                                                               
consent  and marry  someone 16  years of  age who  is not  in the                                                               
military.   He asked  whether the exemption  would exist  for the                                                               
16-year-old spouse as well.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MS. GODINEZ expressed her understanding  that the exemption would                                                               
apply to the underage military enrollee marrying an adult.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  WOOL pointed  out that  page 1,  line 11,  states                                                               
that the  member of the  U.S. Armed Forces  may be under  age 18.                                                               
He offered that  a 17-year-old boy [in the military]  can marry a                                                               
21-year-old woman but could not  marry a 17-year-old woman not in                                                               
the military.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
MS. GODINEZ agreed.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE CLAMAN added that if  the 17-year-old woman not in                                                               
the military got emancipated, then the marriage could proceed.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE WOOL  asked whether in  the case  of a 16-  or 17-                                                               
year-old  who  has  received emancipation  through  a  judge  and                                                               
really  wanted   to  get  married,  parental   consent  would  be                                                               
necessary.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
MS. GODINEZ replied that in  that scenario, the person would need                                                               
judicial  approval  and  parental  consent.    The  exception  to                                                               
parental consent  is an  extreme case, in  which the  parents are                                                               
unfit to decide the matter.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE WOOL  mentioned that his  aunt got married  at age                                                               
16 a  long time ago;  getting married at  a younger age  was more                                                               
common then than today.   He mentioned that marriage right before                                                               
"shipping off to  war" seems a little dated but  conceded that it                                                               
does occur.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
4:13:51 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  TUCK referred  to the  document, entitled  "Child                                                               
Marriage in  America Executive Summary," provided  by the sponsor                                                               
and  included  in  the  committee  packet.    He  asked  for  the                                                               
definitions of  "minors," "children," and "adults"  and the lines                                                               
of demarcation for the three groups.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MS. GODINEZ  expressed her belief  that the words  "children" and                                                               
"minors"  are being  used interchangeably  in  the document,  and                                                               
they refer  to people under  the age of  18.  She  confirmed that                                                               
anyone age 18 to 21 is not a minor.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
4:15:09 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KREISS-TOMKINS opened public testimony on HB 310.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
4:15:25 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
JEANNE SMOOT,  Tahirih Justice Center  (TJC), testified  that the                                                               
Tahirih Justice  Center is a 20-year-old  national legal services                                                               
organization  that works  with  survivors  of domestic  violence,                                                               
sexual assault,  and other violence  and abuse,  including forced                                                               
marriages.    She  relayed  that  forced  marriages  can  involve                                                               
insidious  forms  of coercion,  not  only  physical violence  but                                                               
extreme psychological abuse and threats.   When that comes from a                                                               
parent or a loved  one, it does have the effect of  "a gun to the                                                               
head" or "shotgun  wedding" for a teenage girl who  is still very                                                               
dependent on her family both emotionally and practically.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
MS. SMOOT stated that TJC  has operated a special forced marriage                                                               
initiative across  the country and  over the past  several years;                                                               
it worked on over 500 cases  involving women and girls across the                                                               
U.S.   The organization  also has  analyzed the  minimum marriage                                                               
laws and  exceptions for  all 50 states  and released  a detailed                                                               
report on  how the current  laws can facilitate  forced marriages                                                               
and other abuses and exploitation in the guise of marriage.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MS. SMOOT  continued by saying  that based  on the work  that TJC                                                               
has done,  she has flagged  a few  of the concerns  that Alaska's                                                               
current law  poses in  terms of  serious child  protection risks.                                                               
She  stated  that  the parental  consent  exception  can  conceal                                                               
parental coercion;  among the forced  marriage cases,  most often                                                               
the perpetrator  is a parent.   There are many reasons  for this,                                                               
but  sometimes it's  because a  parent just  wants to  be rid  of                                                               
additional  responsibility for  a girl  and to  offload her  onto                                                               
whomever  will  take  her.    She said  that  regardless  of  the                                                               
backgrounds  of these  cases, the  common  vulnerability is  that                                                               
children  lack the  legal rights  and resources  to stand  up for                                                               
themselves and get to safety.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
MS. SMOOT mentioned  that the low age of 14  falls even below the                                                               
state's  legal age  of consent  for  sex, and  combined with  the                                                               
affirmative defense to prosecution for  statutory rape that is in                                                               
Alaska  statute,  it  means  that  as long  as  the  parties  are                                                               
married,  one  can  essentially "roadmap"  a  "work  around"  for                                                               
predators  to access  young  girls that  would  otherwise be  off                                                               
limits.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
MS. SMOOT  stated a third concern  for flagging:  Only  a handful                                                               
of the  minors currently  being married  ever see  a judge.   The                                                               
concern  is  that  the  approval   process  has  only  vague  and                                                               
subjective criteria  and doesn't have other  critical safeguards,                                                               
like  court-appointed counsel  for  the minor.    She said  that,                                                               
unfortunately, for  the reasons she has  stated, Alaska's current                                                               
laws make it far  too easy for a host of horrors  - ones that TJC                                                               
staff see every day - lurking  behind the marriage of an underage                                                               
girl, no  questions asked.   She said, "That  is the crux  of the                                                               
problem  with current  law."   She maintained  that TJC  does not                                                               
know  how many  of the  cases  behind the  statistics are  forced                                                               
marriages   of   children.     Based   on   TJC  work   and   the                                                               
vulnerabilities  staff see,  they  are  very concerned  precisely                                                               
because  the   children  marrying  today  are   marrying  against                                                               
national   trends.     They  represent   particularly  vulnerable                                                               
children  who have  no say  in the  matter and  whose parents  or                                                               
partners are not listening to them ... (indisc.).                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
MS. SMOOT  stated that this year  alone, 15 states have  taken up                                                               
reform bills; 8  more are on the horizon.   Virginia passed a law                                                               
like HB 310, but the year  before the law passed, 182 minors were                                                               
married, including one younger than age 15.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  TUCK asked  for  a written  copy  of Ms.  Smoot's                                                               
testimony.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
4:19:30 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KREISS-TOMKINS,  after ascertaining  that there was  no one                                                               
else who wished to testify, closed public testimony on HB 310.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KREISS-TOMKINS announced that HB 310 would be held over.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
         HB 152-ORGANIZED MILITIA; AK ST. DEFENSE FORCE                                                                     
                                                                                                                              
4:19:50 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KREISS-TOMKINS  announced that the final  order of business                                                               
would be CS FOR HOUSE BILL  NO. 152(MLV), "An Act relating to the                                                               
organized militia; and relating to  the authority of the adjutant                                                               
general."                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
4:20:22 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  LEDOUX moved  to adopt  the committee  substitute                                                               
(CS) for  HB 152, Version  30-LS0366\R, Wallace, 2/12/18,  as the                                                               
working document, referred to as "Version R."                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KREISS-TOMKINS objected for the purpose of discussion.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
4:20:38 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
KENDRA KLOSTER,  Staff, Representative  Chris Tuck,  Alaska State                                                               
Legislature, on  behalf of Representative Tuck,  prime sponsor of                                                               
HB  152,  relayed  that  Version  R  removes  "imminent  response                                                               
authority" - the language allowing  the adjutant general (TAG) to                                                               
call the national  guard to duty if the  governor is unavailable.                                                               
She  added  that  Version  R   retained  the  language  regarding                                                               
command,   control,   the    TAG   accepting   resignations   and                                                               
retirements,  and adding  the Alaska  State Defense  Force (ASDF)                                                               
and Alaska Naval Militia (AKNM) to the tuition program.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
4:21:27 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  KREISS-TOMKINS  removed his  objection  to  the motion  to                                                               
adopt Version  R.   There being no  further objection,  Version R                                                               
was before the committee.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  LEDOUX commented  that  Version  R addresses  her                                                               
concerns.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  WOOL  commented  that  Version  R  addresses  his                                                               
concerns as well.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE TUCK expressed that the  state should devise a way                                                               
to quickly respond in situations  of imminent danger to the state                                                               
of Alaska -  a natural disaster or other circumstance  - when the                                                               
governor and  lieutenant governor  are incapacitated.   Currently                                                               
there  would  have to  be  a  designation  that the  governor  is                                                               
incapacitated, then  the swearing  in of the  lieutenant governor                                                               
before  action can  be taken  by  the military  to keep  Alaskans                                                               
safe.                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
4:23:21 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE LEDOUX moved to report  the CS for HB 152, Version                                                               
30-LS0366\R, Wallace,  2/12/18, out of committee  with individual                                                               
recommendations  and the  accompanying zero  fiscal note.   There                                                               
being no  objection, CSHB 152(STA)  moved out of the  House State                                                               
Affairs Standing Committee.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
4:24:28 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
ADJOURNMENT                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
There being no  further business before the  committee, the House                                                               
State Affairs  Standing Committee  meeting was adjourned  at 4:24                                                               
p.m.                                                                                                                            

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
HJR027 Sponsor Statement 1.19.18.pdf HSTA 2/22/2018 3:15:00 PM
HJR 27
HJR027 ver A 1.19.18.PDF HSTA 2/22/2018 3:15:00 PM
HJR 27
HJR027 Fiscal Note-LEG-02-16-18.pdf HSTA 2/22/2018 3:15:00 PM
HJR 27
HJR027 Supporting Document- Letter of Support 2.19.18.pdf HSTA 2/22/2018 3:15:00 PM
HJR 27
HJR27 Supporting Document-Letter of Support 2.23.18.pdf HSTA 2/22/2018 3:15:00 PM
HJR 27
HB310 Sponsor Statement 2.6.18.pdf HSTA 2/22/2018 3:15:00 PM
HSTA 3/6/2018 3:15:00 PM
HSTA 3/8/2018 3:15:00 PM
HB 310
HB310 ver A 2.6.18.PDF HSTA 2/22/2018 3:15:00 PM
HSTA 3/6/2018 3:15:00 PM
HSTA 3/8/2018 3:15:00 PM
HB 310
HB310 Fiscal Note DHSS 2.16.18.pdf HSTA 2/22/2018 3:15:00 PM
HSTA 3/6/2018 3:15:00 PM
HSTA 3/8/2018 3:15:00 PM
HB 310
HB310 Supporting Document-Child Marriage in America Executive Summary 2.19.18.pdf HSTA 2/22/2018 3:15:00 PM
HSTA 3/6/2018 3:15:00 PM
HSTA 3/8/2018 3:15:00 PM
HB 310
HB310 Supporting Document-Child Marriage in America 2.6.18.pdf HSTA 2/22/2018 3:15:00 PM
HSTA 3/6/2018 3:15:00 PM
HSTA 3/8/2018 3:15:00 PM
HB 310
HB310 Supporting Document-Minors Married in Alaska 2.6.18.pdf HSTA 2/22/2018 3:15:00 PM
HSTA 3/6/2018 3:15:00 PM
HSTA 3/8/2018 3:15:00 PM
HB 310
HB310 Supporting Document-Tahirih Child Marriage Backgrounder 2.6.18.pdf HSTA 2/22/2018 3:15:00 PM
HSTA 3/6/2018 3:15:00 PM
HSTA 3/8/2018 3:15:00 PM
HB 310
HB310 Supporting Document- Letter from Office of Victim's Rights 2.20.18.pdf HSTA 2/22/2018 3:15:00 PM
HSTA 3/6/2018 3:15:00 PM
HSTA 3/8/2018 3:15:00 PM
HB 310
HB310 Supporting Document- Letters of Support 2.22.18.pdf HSTA 2/22/2018 3:15:00 PM
HSTA 3/6/2018 3:15:00 PM
HSTA 3/8/2018 3:15:00 PM
HB 310
HB310 Supporting Document-ACT Support Letter 2.27.18.pdf HSTA 2/22/2018 3:15:00 PM
HSTA 3/6/2018 3:15:00 PM
HSTA 3/8/2018 3:15:00 PM
HB 310
HB152 Sponsor Statement 4.12.17.pdf HSTA 1/23/2018 3:00:00 PM
HSTA 1/25/2018 3:00:00 PM
HSTA 2/22/2018 3:15:00 PM
HB 152
HB152 ver R 2.13.18.pdf HSTA 2/22/2018 3:15:00 PM
HB 152
HB152 Fiscal Note DMVA 1.20.18.pdf HSTA 1/23/2018 3:00:00 PM
HSTA 1/25/2018 3:00:00 PM
HSTA 2/22/2018 3:15:00 PM
HB 152
HB152 Supporting Document-DMVA Letter of Support 4.12.17.pdf HSTA 1/23/2018 3:00:00 PM
HSTA 1/25/2018 3:00:00 PM
HSTA 2/22/2018 3:15:00 PM
HB 152
HB152 Opposing Document-Letter Lawrence Wood 4.12.17.pdf HSTA 1/23/2018 3:00:00 PM
HSTA 1/25/2018 3:00:00 PM
HSTA 2/22/2018 3:15:00 PM
HB 152
HB152 Additional Documents-DMVA Letter and bill info 4.12.17.pdf HSTA 1/23/2018 3:00:00 PM
HSTA 1/25/2018 3:00:00 PM
HSTA 2/22/2018 3:15:00 PM
HB 152