Legislature(1993 - 1994)

11/03/1993 09:09 AM CRA

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
txt
         SENATE COMMUNITY & REGIONAL AFFAIRS COMMITTEE                         
                        Eagle River, AK                                        
                        November 3, 1993                                       
                           9:09 a.m.                                           
                                                                               
  MEMBERS PRESENT                                                              
                                                                               
 Senator Randy Phillips, Chairman                                              
 Senator Robin Taylor, Vice Chairman                                           
 Senator Loren Leman                                                           
 Senator Al Adams                                                              
 Senator Fred Zharoff                                                          
                                                                               
  MEMBERS ABSENT                                                               
                                                                               
 None                                                                          
                                                                               
  ALSO PRESENT                                                                 
                                                                               
 Senator Tim Kelly                                                             
 Senator Steve Rieger                                                          
 Representative Ed Willis                                                      
                                                                               
    COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                         
                                                                               
 SENATE BILL NO. 2                                                             
 "An Act requiring pay equity for certain public employees and                 
 requiring the compensation of certain public employees based                  
 on the value of work performed."                                              
                                                                               
 SENATE BILL NO. 203                                                           
 "An Act requiring unified municipalities to provide police                    
 protection and law enforcement services; and providing for an                 
 effective date."                                                              
                                                                               
  PREVIOUS SENATE COMMITTEE ACTION                                             
                                                                               
 SB   2 - No previous action to record.                                        
 SB 203 - No previous action to record.                                        
                                                                               
  WITNESS REGISTER                                                             
                                                                               
 John Vezina, Staff to Senator Donley                                          
 State Capitol                                                                 
 Juneau, AK 99801-1182                                                         
                                                                               
 Mike McMullen, Manager, System Services                                       
 Division of Personnel/EEO                                                     
 Department of Administration                                                  
 P.O. Box 110201                                                               
 Juneau, AK 99811-0201                                                         
                                                                               
 Harriet M. Lawlor                                                             
 AK State Employees Association                                                
 3510 Spenard Road                                                             
 Anchorage, AK 99503                                                           
                                                                               
 Teresa Anderson                                                               
 AK State Employees Association                                                
 1237 Kennicott                                                                
 Fairbanks, AK 99701                                                           
                                                                               
 Patricia Jones                                                                
 AK State Employees Association                                                
 P.O. Box 2296                                                                 
 Valdez, AK                                                                    
                                                                               
 Alma Seward                                                                   
 AK State Employees Association                                                
 Juneau, AK                                                                    
                                                                               
 Richard Seward                                                                
 AK State Employees Association                                                
 315 Barnett St., #104                                                         
 Fairbanks, AK 99701                                                           
                                                                               
 Kathy Dietrick                                                                
 AK State Employees Association                                                
 315 Barnett St., #104                                                         
 Fairbanks, AK 99701                                                           
                                                                               
 Ms. Kelly Brown                                                               
 815 Austin                                                                    
 Fairbanks, AK 99701                                                           
                                                                               
 Jennie Day Peterson                                                           
 3501 Spenard Road                                                             
 Anchorage, AK 99515                                                           
                                                                               
 Josh Fink, Committee Aide                                                     
 Senate Labor & Commerce Committee                                             
 State Capitol                                                                 
 Juneau, AK 99801-1182                                                         
                                                                               
 Duane Udland, Deputy Chief                                                    
 Anchorage Police Dept.                                                        
 Anchorage, AK                                                                 
                                                                               
 Major Glen Godfrey, Deputy Director                                           
 Alaska State Troopers                                                         
 5700 E. Tudor Road                                                            
 Anchorage, AK 99507-1225                                                      
                                                                               
 Mary Frohne                                                                   
 9921 Hillside Dr.                                                             
 Anchorage, AK 99516                                                           
                                                                               
 Barbara Weinig                                                                
 P.O. Box 113849                                                               
 Anchorage, AK 99511                                                           
                                                                               
 Judy Moerlein                                                                 
 Anchorage, AK                                                                 
                                                                               
 Scott Brandt-Eareckson, Assistant Municipal Attorney                          
 Municipality of Anchorage                                                     
 P.O. Box 196650                                                               
 Anchorage, AK 99519-6650                                                      
                                                                               
 ACTION NARRATIVE                                                              
                                                                               
 TAPE 93-28, SIDE A                                                            
                                                                               
 Number 001                                                                    
                                                                               
 CHAIRMAN RANDY PHILLIPS called the Senate Community & Regional                
 Affairs Committee meeting to order at 9:09, noting that                       
 Senators Taylor, Adams and Zharoff were participating via the                 
 teleconference network.  He then introduced  SB 2  (PAY EQUITY                
 BASED ON VALUE OF WORK) as the first order of business.                       
                                                                               
                                                                               
 JOHN VEZINA, Aide to Senator Dave Donley, explained that SB
 2, which is sponsored by Senator Donley, addresses the problem                
 of pay inequities in state government with state employees,                   
 schools districts and rural attendance areas.  It is a                        
 mechanism to put an end to discrimination in state employment,                
 and it is modeled after legislation passed in Minnesota. Two                  
 studies in recent years have shown that women earn 33 percent                 
 less than men in jobs in state government.  He  pointed out                   
 that there is nothing in these studies indicating that the                    
 discrimination against women is purposeful.                                   
                                                                               
 SB 2 calls for state agencies to conduct studies to see if                    
 there is indeed wage discrimination based on sex.  If such a                  
 discrimination exists, the agencies would then formulate a                    
 program to correct the problem.  Their recommendations would                  
 be presented to the Legislature to accept, reject or amend                    
 those recommendations.                                                        
                                                                               
 Mr. Vezina said Senator Donley firmly believes that the state                 
 is in danger of a lawsuit that would cost the state much more                 
 than it would to cost to implement this program.                              
                                                                               
 SENATOR ADAMS questioned if there would be any enforcement                    
 costs tied to this legislation.  JOHN VEZINA answered that the                
 only cost they know of would be the implementation of the                     
 study by the Department of Administration.                                    
                                                                               
 SENATOR ADAMS asked if the committee has received a position                  
 paper from the Administration on SB 2.  SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS                
 responded that a position paper has been requested, but has                   
 not yet been received.  It is his understanding that the                      
 Administration will be offering an alternative to the bill.                   
                                                                               
 MIKE MCMULLEN, Division of Personnel/EEO, Department of                       
 Administration, stated their belief in fair access to                         
 employment opportunity and equality between the sexes.  The                   
 division voluntarily undertakes affirmative action plans to                   
 overcome problems, they operate with a classification that,                   
 by statute, is based on the principle of like pay for like                    
 work.                                                                         
                                                                               
 Mr. McMullen said the department has some problems with the                   
 way SB 2 is written, and he directed attention to alternative                 
 bill and its attached fiscal note.                                            
                                                                               
 Mr. McMullen outlined some specific areas of concern with SB
 2:  some classifications would be evaluated with a different                  
 system in only some of their classifications; the legislative                 
 review step if the new system is adopted; and the relationship                
 of items in the bill with collective bargaining.                              
                                                                               
 SENATOR ADAMS said the Alaska Quantative Evaluation System                    
 (AQES) spent $500,000 in its preliminary stage in 1983 and now                
 will spend another half a million dollars in FY 95 and FY 96.                 
 He asked if this will complete the project, and can it be done                
 with existing staff.  MIKE MCMULLEN answered that AQES was                    
 developed for the classified service, and the new legislation                 
 would require a system for the entire Executive Branch.  That                 
 will include the five bargaining units which are in exempt                    
 service, as well as all of those other positions in the exempt                
 and partially exempt service which are not covered in the                     
 initial study.  Also, based on the time that has elapsed since                
 the preliminary study, there is information that needs to be                  
 updated, as well as areas which weren't completed then and                    
 need to be completed now.  He didn't think this could be done                 
 by internal staff only because the volume of additional                       
 information that they will need to gather will involve all of                 
 their existing staff plus the additional staff to get the                     
 study done in any reasonable period of time and still service                 
 essential needs in classification during the time this system                 
 is being developed.                                                           
                                                                               
 SENATOR ZHAROFF asked why it takes so many and so long to do                  
 it when this information should be available in the computer                  
 system.  MIKE MCMULLEN answered that they have no                             
 comprehensive external salary data so that step needs to be                   
 completed.  The other things that need to be done will be done                
 with the state work force.  With a system like this, every                    
 four or five years the employer needs to reevaluate their                     
 values because they change over time.  The new legislation                    
 would require an entirely different classification system.                    
                                                                               
 JOHN VEZINA, responding to Mr. McMullen's comments on the                     
 legislation, said they used collective bargaining because                     
 Senator Donley believes that is the mechanism that the                        
 Legislature has set up for dealing with state employees.                      
                                                                               
 SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS stated the committee would take public                 
 testimony over the teleconference network.                                    
                                                                               
 HARRIET LAWLOR, representing Alaska State Employees                           
 Association Local 52 in Anchorage, said Mr. McMullen's                        
 statement that there have been no problems with sex-based                     
 discrimination in the last couple of years is an inaccurate                   
 statement.  She said has copies of two Human Rights Commission                
 charges that have been filed based on sex discrimination, as                  
 well as copies of the state's own studies on under-utilized                   
 categories which have not been met.                                           
                                                                               
 TERESA ANDERSON, a member of the Women's Committee of the                     
 Alaska State Employees Association testified from Fairbanks                   
 in support of SB 2.  She said she thinks it would be wonderful                
 if the State of Alaska could lead the way in pay equity                       
 instead of increasing the number of families that need public                 
 assistance. She said women are trying to provide for their                    
 families on wages that should be larger, that should be equal                 
 to those of male dominated jobs with comparable education,                    
 skills, effort, responsibility and work hazards.                              
                                                                               
 SENATOR LEMAN asked Ms. Anderson if she was suggesting that                   
 some of the people that are not getting enough pay from the                   
 State of Alaska are on public assistance, and, if so, does she                
 know how many of them are.  TERESA ANDERSON said she could not                
 quote the number, but she thought that information could be                   
 obtained from the particular agencies.  She added that Alaska                 
 is behind many other states in pay equity.                                    
                                                                               
 PATRICIA JONES, Chair of the ASEA's Women's Issues Committee                  
 testifying from Valdez, said the state's current practice of                  
 gender biased wage discrimination affects her as well as all                  
 state employees in many ways.  She said gender is a deciding                  
 factor for women on how much money they make and for others                   
 in female dominated job classes.  She urged putting an end to                 
 the current practice of a state employee's monetary worth                     
 being tied to their gender, which she said is an unfair labor                 
 practice.                                                                     
                                                                               
 ALMA SEWARD, former Chair of the Women's Issues of the Alaska                 
 State Employees Association Local 52 testifying from Juneau,                  
 said they have supported legislation over the past three years                
 to go a pay equity study and implementation of corrections to                 
 the existing wage disparities.  ASEA has done a preliminary                   
 analysis of Department of Administration figures and has                      
 consistently found inequities exist in salaries of female                     
 dominated job classes.  She also spoke to the expense to the                  
 state and to employee morale if lawsuits are filed.  She urged                
 support of the legislation, which she said will benefit the                   
 State of Alaska substantially.                                                
                                                                               
 RICHARD SEWARD, Business Agent, Alaska State Employee                         
 Association Local 52, testifying from Fairbanks, pointed out                  
 that it is illegal under the Federal 1963 Equal Pay Act to                    
 reduce any worker's pay in order to fix pay inequities by                     
 reducing the pay in the male dominated classes.   He also                     
 pointed out that the 1984 to 1986 classification study was not                
 a comparable worth study, and he said it won't help fix                       
 comparable work equity in Alaska.                                             
                                                                               
 Addressing the alternative legislation being proposed by the                  
 Administration, Mr. Seward said that to take collective                       
 bargaining away from this issue does everybody in Alaska a                    
 disservice.  ASEA believes that the working people in Alaska                  
 have a great deal of knowledge on the job classification                      
 system and a good sense of what is fair and equitable.  He                    
 added they are willing to bring their resources to this issue                 
 to help resolve it, and they hope that SB 2 maintains the                     
 right of collective bargaining.                                               
                                                                               
 Mr. Seward quoted numerous statistics from a study he                         
 conducted earlier this year on the State of Alaska job                        
 classes.                                                                      
                                                                               
 TAPE 93-28, SIDE B                                                            
                                                                               
 Mr. Seward said his study was not a comparable worth study;                   
 the study just shows that there is a definite problem in the                  
 current classification system.  The job class are segregated                  
 by sex; the employees are segregated by sex into those job                    
 classes.  If a large number of employees in a job are female,                 
 they are going to make less than men irregardless of the level                
 of education required for the job.                                            
                                                                               
 Concluding his testimony, Mr. Seward stated the union remains                 
 ready to negotiate comparable worth pay equity study and                      
 implementation to the state, and they remain ready to work                    
 with the Legislature.                                                         
                                                                               
 KATHY DIETRICH, Business Agent, Alaska State Employees                        
 Association, testifying from Fairbanks, stated there are many                 
 women and fair-minded men who feel very strongly on this                      
 issue.  She spoke to the need for establishing equitable                      
 compensation relationships between female dominated job                       
 classes and male dominated job classes.  She urged passage of                 
 SB 2.                                                                         
                                                                               
 KELLY BROWN, a member of the Alaska State Employees                           
 Association and Chair of the Alaska AFL/CIO Women's Committee                 
 testifying from Fairbanks, stated that last January the Alaska                
 AFL/CIO delegates listed pay  equity as a legislative goal                    
 that they would like to see in 1993.  She said there is a                     
 proven pattern in the history of the work force which shows                   
 that as more and more women enter into a job class, a lesser                  
 value is then placed on that job class.  She urged passage of                 
 SB 2.                                                                         
                                                                               
 MIKE MCMULLEN responded to several issues brought up by the                   
 previous witnesses, as well as questions from the committee                   
 members.                                                                      
                                                                               
 JENNIE DAY PETERSON, Business Manager, Alaska State Employees                 
 Association, testifying from Anchorage, said Mr. McMullen                     
 indicated that the Department of Labor gender gap report was                  
 conducted by ASEA members.  However, that report was done by                  
 Department of Labor employees who happen to be ASEA members,                  
 and she said his comment was misleading and unfair.                           
                                                                               
 There being no further witnesses wishing to testify on SB 2,                  
 SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS stated that the bill would be back                     
 before the committee for its consideration after the session                  
 reconvenes in January.                                                        
 TAPE 93-29, SIDE A                                                            
 SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS introduced  SB 203  (MANDATORY MUNICIPAL               
 POLICE SERVICES) as the next order of business.                               
                                                                               
 JOSH FINK, committee aide, Senate Labor & Commerce Committee,                 
 stated SB 203 was introduced by the committee at the request                  
 of the Municipality of Anchorage.  It will require unified                    
 municipalities to provide law enforcement services on an                      
 areawide basis.                                                               
                                                                               
 There are three unified municipalities in Alaska:  Anchorage,                 
 Juneau and Sitka.  Both Juneau and Sitka currently provide                    
 areawide police coverage.  The Municipality of Anchorage                      
 provides police service to approximately 80 percent of the                    
 city.  Hillside and some other portions of Anchorage have                     
 repeatedly rejected paying for police coverage.  The current                  
 system on the Hillside in which police officers respond to a                  
 call only if there is a car available does not provide                        
 sufficient protection to the hundreds of residents, teachers                  
 and students in that area.                                                    
 If enacted, SB 203 would override any municipal charter                       
 prohibition or local area vote.                                               
                                                                               
 Mr. Fink noted there was a draft committee substitute for the                 
 committee's consideration to address the concern that the                     
 original bill did not contain a mechanism to fund the new                     
 officers that would be required in the new areas served.  It                  
 would allow for the mill rate being adjusted in the new                       
 service areas to cover the additional cost.                                   
                                                                               
 DUANE UDLAND, Deputy Chief, Anchorage Police Department, noted                
 the city administration's support for SB 203.                                 
                                                                               
 Deputy Chief Udland said that from his own personal                           
 perspective, it is a question of equity.  At one time he lived                
 on the Hillside and he felt it was odd that he lived in                       
 probably the richest area in town and yet he was receiving                    
 free police service.                                                          
                                                                               
 Deputy Chief Udland said things have changed, and it is at a                  
 point now where having areawide police service makes a lot of                 
 sense.  He added that the State Troopers and the Anchorage                    
 Police Department do an excellent job on the Hillside, and it                 
 really isn't an issue of who does the better job; it is an                    
 issue of taxes.  Right now, residents of the Hillside don't                   
 have to pay for the service.                                                  
                                                                               
 SENATOR ADAMS referred to Section 4 in the draft committee                    
 substitute and asked if that transition section was necessary.                
 He suggested eliminating it, and if the legislation passes,                   
 the Act take effect July 1, 1994 versus waiting until January                 
 1, 1995.  DEPUTY CHIEF UDLAND answered that he thought a                      
 transition period was needed because there is a lag time for                  
 the department to hire new people and get them into place.                    
                                                                               
                                                                               
 SENATOR LEMAN requested information be provided to the                        
 committee on what areas are providing police protection.                      
 MAJOR GLEN GODFREY, Deputy Director, Alaska State Troopers,                   
 stated the Department of Public Safety's and the Division of                  
 Alaska State Troopers' support for SB 203.                                    
                                                                               
 Major Godfrey pointed out that Juneau and Sitka have been                     
 successful in doing this type of enforcement, and it has                      
 relieved the Division of Alaska State Troopers from that type                 
 of duties, allowing them to concentrate on their primary                      
 duties such as highway patrol, traffic investigation,                         
 statewide search and rescue, and providing support to rural                   
 areas and to the statewide Village Safety Officer program.                    
                                                                               
 Currently, there are 259 positions in the Division of Alaska                  
 State Troopers, of which 27 are vacant.  There will be a class                
 graduating from the Alaska State Trooper Academy next month                   
 and they will be filling in their vacancies with those new                    
 troopers.                                                                     
                                                                               
 MARY FROHNE, representing the Hillside East Community Council                 
 in Anchorage, stated the Hillside residents are not against                   
 paying their fair share for police protection.  She said they                 
 have been served well in the past by the Alaska State                         
 Troopers.                                                                     
                                                                               
 Ms. Frohne said to override the provision in their charter,                   
 which gives them the ability to vote on what services they                    
 should receive in the Hillside area, is not a good policy. She                
 said if they were given the choice of being served by either                  
 the Alaska State Troopers or the Anchorage Police Department                  
 they would probably select the troopers.  If they were forced                 
 to vote on the city police, it would probably fail again.                     
                                                                               
 BARBARA WEINIG, President of the Rabbit Creek Council in                      
 Anchorage, stated that when unification came about, the                       
 service area concept and being able to choose what services                   
 you wanted was very important, and it is still extremely                      
 important to her area.  She believes it is a bad precedent for                
 the state to enact legislation that would override local                      
 charters.  She also voiced their willingness to pay for State                 
 Trooper services.                                                             
                                                                               
 Responding to questions from Ms. Weinig, MAJOR GODFREY said                   
 at this point in time, they plan on keeping their trooper                     
 stationed in Girdwood, specifically for highway patrol and                    
 traffic enforcement.  In the last year, there have been eight                 
 traffic fatalities on that stretch of highway.  SCOTT BRANDT-                 
 EARECKSON, an assistant municipal attorney, said the troopers                 
 currently have jurisdiction within the Chugach State Park                     
 area, and he believes that with the passage of the legislation                
 they would retain that jurisdiction.                                          
                                                                               
 SENATOR KELLY said he has talked to several people on the                     
 Hillside and one of their big complaints was that they had to                 
 pay a higher mill rate in that area.  He asked if there were                  
 different mill rates in various sections of the municipality                  
 for police protection.  SCOTT BRANDT-EARECKSON answered that                  
 within a particular service area where the service is being                   
 provided, the mill rate is uniform.  Different sections of                    
 town have different mill rates based upon different services                  
 that they receive.  The budget director for the Municipality                  
 of Anchorage, clarified that if the Hillside were to come in                  
 everybody would be paying the same amount for police                          
 protection.                                                                   
                                                                               
 JUDY MOERLEIN, President, Home and Landowners' Organization,                  
 Inc., said they have found that the people are not unwilling                  
 to pay their fair share for police protection, but they feel                  
 that the troopers have a certain ability to handle more rural                 
 situations.                                                                   
                                                                               
 SENATOR RIEGER commented that he thinks the feeling in South                  
 Anchorage is that they've never had a chance to really express                
 in a vote what they would like to see.  They've had proposals                 
 put before them which are not acceptable, and when they get                   
 turned down, it gets distorted into being a perception that                   
 there is an unwillingness to pay.  He added that he thought                   
 that any reasonable proposal which regarded trooper coverage                  
 would be passed overwhelmingly by these people.                               
                                                                               
 SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS pointed out that Eagle River is                        
 probably more rural in nature than the Hillside area, but                     
 several years ago they voted to pay for police protection in                  
 Eagle River.  He said the sentiment of his constituents is                    
 that the Hillside should be paying for police protection, and                 
 sooner or later this issue is going to have to be resolved.                   
                                                                               
                                                                               
 TAPE 93-29, SIDE B                                                            
                                                                               
 BARBARA WEINIG said that during all of the talks and hearings                 
 that they had on this issue, prior to even the task force                     
 being formed, one of the things that came to light was that                   
 the Municipality of Anchorage was charging Southeast Anchorage                
 for a level of service that they couldn't provide, and that                   
 the level of service they could provide would be in response                  
 to incidents level because there was no way of effectively                    
 patrolling many of the roads in Southeast Anchorage.  She                     
 reiterated that the people felt that the troopers could                       
 provide a better level of service and they were willing to                    
 contract and pay for that service.                                            
                                                                               
 PATTY SWENSON, Staff to Representative Con Bunde in Anchorage,                
 asked if under SB 203 the Hillside residents will be able to                  
 pay for just the services they receive.  The budget director                  
 for the Municipality of Anchorage answered that property taxes                
 do discriminate; they discriminate on the basis of value, so                  
 the people in higher assessed valuation areas, such as the                    
 Hillside, do pay more for the services they receive.                          
                                                                               
 SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS asked if there is anything being done                  
 right now for a ballot proposition for self-determination on                  
 the question.  JUDY MORELINE answered that there isn't at this                
 time, but that they are trying to find the mode which will                    
 most expeditiously accomplish a State Trooper agreement                       
 between them and those people who have said that they want to                 
 pay for that service.                                                         
                                                                               
 SENATOR KELLY asked if a fiscal note has been provided by the                 
 Division of State Troopers on what it would it cost them to                   
 adequately police the Hillside area.  MAJOR GODFREY responded                 
 that he has not seen one, and Senator Kelly requested that a                  
 fiscal note be provided.                                                      
                                                                               
 There being no further witnesses present to testify on SB 203,                
 SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS adjourned the meeting at 1:09 p.m.                     
                                                                               

Document Name Date/Time Subjects