Legislature(1995 - 1996)
03/12/1996 09:10 AM FIN
* first hearing in first committee of referral
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
MINUTES SENATE FINANCE COMMITTEE March 12, 1996 9:10 a.m. TAPES SFC-96, #37, Sides 1 and 2 SFC-96, #38, Side 1 (000-175) CALL TO ORDER Senator Rick Halford, Co-chairman, convened the meeting at approximately 9:10 a.m. PRESENT In addition to Co-chairman Halford, Senators Donley, Phillips, Rieger, Sharp, and Zharoff were present. Co- chairman Frank arrived soon after the meeting began. ALSO ATTENDING: Senator Judy Salo; Anne Carpeneti, Assistant Attorney General, Criminal Division, Dept. of Law; Del Smith, Deputy Commissioner, Dept. of Public Safety; Juanita Hensley, Chief, Driver Services, Dept. of Public Safety; Donna Schultz, Probation Officer, Division of Family Services, Dept. of Health and Social Services; Allie Gordon, aide to Senator Frank; Mike Greany, Director, Legislative Finance Division; and aides to committee members and other members of the legislature. ALSO PARTICIPATING VIA TELECONFERENCE FROM FAIRBANKS: Al Near; Carol Gordon; Lori Backes; Florence Loucks, Director, Family Focus, Fairbanks Native Association; Judy Schiffler; and Dana Brown. SUMMARY INFORMATION SB 86 - COMMEMORATIVE GOLD RUSH LICENSE PLATES Discussion was had with Juanita Hensley. CSSB 86 (Fin) was adopted and REPORTED OUT of committee with a new $10.0 fiscal note from the Dept. of Public Safety. SB 193 - MANDATORY INSURANCE FOR COSTS OF BIRTH CSSB 193 (L&C) was REPORTED OUT of committee with zero fiscal notes from the Dept. of Commerce and Economic Development, Dept. of Health and Social Services, and Dept. of Administration (all depts.). SB 289 - MISC. LAWS RELATING TO RUNAWAY MINORS Discussion was had with Annie Carpeneti, Donna Schultz, and Del Smith. CSSB 289 (M version, 3/7/96) was adopted. Teleconference testimony from Fairbanks was presented by Al Near, Carol Gordon, Lori Backes, Florence Loucks, Judy Schiffler, and Dana Brown. Ms. Backes was asked to fax recommended amendments to committee. The Dept. of Law was directed to propose language for a "findings and purposes" section within the bill. The bill was then held in committee for further review. SENATE BILL NO. 193 An Act requiring insurance coverage for certain costs of birth; and providing for an effective date. Co-chairman Halford directed that SB 193 be brought before committee and noted extensive discussion of the bill at a previous meeting. Senator Zharoff MOVED that CSSB 193 (L&C) pass from committee with individual recommendations. No objection having been raised, CSSB 193 (L&C) was REPORTED OUT of committee with zero fiscal notes from the Dept. of Commerce and Economic Development, Dept. of Health and Social Services, and Dept. of Administration (all depts.). All members signed the committee report with a "do pass" recommendation with the exception of Co-chairman Frank and Senator Sharp who signed "no recommendation." SENATE BILL NO. 86 An Act relating to issuance of special request commemorative gold rush motor vehicle license plates. Co-chairman Halford directed that SB 86 be brought on for discussion. Senator Sharp explained that the bill proposes to redesign the state license plate for motor vehicles to reflect the ten-year (1994-2004) gold rush centennial theme, and he referenced letters of support. The Senator then MOVED for adoption of work draft 9-LS0689\G (Ford, 3/8/96). No objection having been raised, CSSB 86 (Fin) was ADOPTED. JUANITA HENSLEY, Chief, Driver Services, Division of Motor Vehicles, Dept. of Public Safety, came before committee to respond to questions. Co-chairman Halford asked if the work draft would be accompanied by a zero fiscal note. Mrs. Hensley responded negatively. The original note, showing costs of $7.7 and revenues of $7.8, reflects design of a specialty license plate depicting the gold rush era. The work draft allows the gold rush design to become the general issue license plate. That would involve contractual costs for both the designer and supplier. Operating costs for the first year would be $10.0 for design. An increase in subsequent years to $34.4 reflects rebid of the existing contract which expires in January, 1997. The contract has historically shown a 10 percent increase. That cost would be in addition to costs associated with the new design. In response to a further question from the Co-chairman, Mrs. Hensley acknowledged that sale of the plates would produce revenue, but she said she had no way of quantifying that revenue at this time. Discussion followed regarding sales of vanity license plates. Responding to a question from Co-chairman Frank, Mrs. Hensley reiterated that the gold rush plate would be phased in as the new general issue plate. Senator Donley advised that he would support availability of gold rush plates as an option. He stressed that the proposal that the new plate become general issue represents a major change in the bill. Senator Randy Phillips asked what would happen after the ten-year centennial period. He attested to past public aversion to changing Alaska's license plates. Senator Donley voiced support for the original bill which provided for an optional centennial plate. Senator Sharp explained that the impetus behind general issue was to make the plate available as economically as possible at the $5.00 replacement rate rather than at the custom plate rate of $30-$35. The intent was to provide a low priced entry threshold through gradual phase in. Experience with vanity plates indicates that sales of gold rush plates would more than cover annual costs. The cost escalation projected on the fiscal note would have occurred for existing plates when the contract was rebid. The only difference is the $10.0 design cost and nominal costs from redesign that may increase the average cost of plates. Sale of plates at the replacement rate of $5.00 provides a $2.00 profit for the state. When profit is calculated per projected sales, the state should more than break even. Co-chairman Frank voiced support for the adopted work draft. Senator Rieger MOVED that CSSB 86 (Fin) pass from committee with accompanying fiscal notes. No objection having been raised, CSSB 86 (FIN) was REPORTED OUT of committee with a $10.0 fiscal note from the Dept. of Public Safety. All members signed the committee report with a "do pass" recommendation with the exception of Senators Donley and Phillips who signed "no recommendation." SENATE BILL NO. 289 An Act relating to runaway minors and their families or legal custodians. Co-chairman Halford directed that SB 289 be brought on for discussion. Co-chairman Frank explained that the bill was introduced in response to constituent concern regarding runaway minors. The intent is to tighten laws to provide that police officers return runaways to their homes and allow officers an opportunity to review the situation there. The Dept. of Law discovered a loophole in existing law which makes situations in which adults inappropriately harbor runaways difficult to prove. Provisions within the bill amend that language. Co-chairman Frank next attested to the revolving door nature of community shelters for runaways. Minors are free to leave at any time. Language in the proposed bill requires that runaways be taken to "at least a semi-secure type environment." That entails an alarm or some form of notification that sounds when a young person leaves. The appropriate authorities can then be contacted. Senator Randy Phillips referenced his prior attempts to deal with the issue and noted a lack of majority support at the time. He voiced his hope that the climate of the existing legislature would be conducive to enactment. Co-chairman Frank MOVED for adoption of a work draft CSSB 289 (9-LS1635\M, 3/7/96, Lauterbach). No objection having been raised, CSSB 289 (Fin) was ADOPTED. ALLIE GORDON, aide to Senator Frank, came before committee and conducted the following sectional analysis of the work draft: Sec. 1. New language relates to: Subsection (3) provisions concerning repeated absences from school. "Just cause" was removed from statutory language and "without the permission of the child's parent, guardian, or custodian" was added. Parents who keep their children out of school for other than legitimate reasons would still be in violation under AS 14.30.010 (truancy law). Subsection (4) provisions relating to harboring of runaway minors. "Just cause" was also removed from existing language as was "knowledge or." Removal strengthens language to the extent that if permission has been granted, knowledge is inherent. Affirmative defenses to harboring have also been incorporated within the subsection. These defenses require that the defendant reasonably believe that the child is in danger of physical injury or in need of temporary shelter. The defendant must also notify authorities within 12 hours. Sec. 2. Deals with courses of action available to peace officers after they pick up a runaway: (a) The first is to return the runaway to his or her legal custodian. (b) The second is to take the minor to a nearby location agreed to by the legal custodian. (c) Take the minor to a semi-secure shelter which has delayed locks or alarms on the doors notifying staff if a minor attempts to leave. Sec. 3. Contains definitions. Sec. 4. Deals with liability issues associated with shelters. Shelters are not to be held liable should a minor leave and subsequently sustain injuries. Sec. 5. Describes runaway programs. Changes deal with the time limit within which the shelter must notify the department when a minor enters the shelter or program. The only changes between CSSB 289 (Jud) and CSSB 289 (Fin) occur in Sec. 1, subsections (3) and (4), as noted above. Co-chairman Frank added that in reviewing existing law, he could see no just cause for a minor to be repeatedly absent from school. The Dept. of Law cited circumstances such as an extended vacation, and language relating to parental permission was added. Senator Rieger referenced existing law at page 4, line 19, and noted that it speaks to child abuse and neglect. He then pointed to language at page 2, lines 22 through 27, and noted that it addresses physical or sexual abuse. He subsequently inquired concerning the difference between the two and whether something was excluded. Senator Rieger also referenced wording at page 3, lines 29-31, and inquired regarding the standard for "material factor" compliance. Senator Zharoff asked why language relating to exercise of discretion by peace officers was removed at page 2, line 18. Ms. Gordon answered that the intent was to lay out the course of action for the police officer. The first response must be to try to return the child to his or her parent or guardian. Family reconciliation will be the initial course of action unless there is reason to believe the child has been abused. Comments by Senator Phillips and discussion among members followed regarding past legislative attempts to deal with the issue of runaways. Senator Donley questioned the zero fiscal notes submitted by the Dept. of Health and Social Services, suggesting that proposed changes within the bill would require funding. DONNA SCHULZ, Juvenile Probation Officer, Division of Family Services, Dept. of Health and Social Services, came before committee. She expressed appreciation for ability to work with the sponsor on the proposed bill which she acknowledged deals with "very difficult problems." Positive changes could result from the legislation. Ms. Schulz noted specifically provisions making it easier to bring charges for contributing to the delinquency of a minor. The bill expands the parental role and elevates the position of parents in determining where a child will be placed if the child is not returned home. Provisions direct peace officers to use semi-secure facilities, if possible. And, it strengthens shelters by allowing them to become semi-secure. Officers will also advise youth on available mediation services. Ms. Schulz voiced support for the bill. Speaking to questions regarding the fiscal notes, Ms. Schulz acknowledged that the department requested $170.0 as a one- time cost to assist six shelters in obtaining locks and other devices needed to make them semi-secure. Senator Rieger asked if statistics indicate why the majority of runaways leave home. Ms. Schulz said she had no statistical information and deferred comment to shelter staff participating via teleconference. ANNIE CARPENETI, Assistant Attorney General, Criminal Division, Dept. of Law, came before committee. Senator Donley referenced civil division fiscal note language indicating that secure placement of juveniles will "probably be determined to be unconstitutional." Mrs. Carpeneti voiced her understanding that "generally you're not supposed to lock up children . . . [who] are in custody because they're children, not because they've done something wrong." She then advised that she would return more definitive information to committee. She also noted that changing language from "secure" to "semi-secure" might cure the constitutional issue. Co-chairman Frank voiced a preference for a secure facility, advising that many runaways leave both home and shelter facilities for a life on the streets. He then voice his understanding that providing for a semi- secure facility and a notification system would cure the constitutional problem. In response to questions from Senator Donley regarding the nature of the constitutional issues, Mrs. Carpeneti said she would provide both federal and state citations. Referencing CSSB 289 (Fin), Mrs. Carpeneti advised that the Dept. of Law opposes changes in "contributing to the delinquency" statutes. She pointed specifically to AS 11.51.130 (a)(3) at page 2, line 2, and voiced a preference for existing statutory language. Language in the proposed bill applies to both parents and non-parents. It prohibits an individual from actively keeping a child from school compared to truancy laws which are more focused on parents who are not getting the child to school. Removing language relating to just cause for absence and inserting wording relating to parental permission undercuts truancy laws by implying that a parent can give permission for a child to be absent from school. She cited instances of child abuse as an example. Co-chairman Frank advised of desire to remove "just cause" because "It was just a big loophole." Senator Donley suggested that both "just cause" and parental permission language be included. END: SFC-96, #37, Side 1 BEGIN: SFC-96, #37, Side 2 Senator Randy Phillips expressed frustration over Dept. of Law objection to proposed legislative changes without providing an alternative approach. Mrs. Carpeneti voiced her understanding that there was no problem with "just cause" language in subparagraph (3). Concern relates to inclusion within (4). Co-chairman Frank advised that "just cause" was determined to be problematic in both subsections since it posed problems for prosecution. In subsequent discussion of prosecution efforts, Co-chairman Frank asked if the department had prosecuted under subsection (3). Co- chairman Halford asked that the department return a response to committee. Referencing page 2, line 4, Mrs. Carpeneti expressed a preference for retaining "knowledge or permission." The department is worried about "throw-away kids"--children whose parents do not have the thought, attention, or care to withhold or give permission. Co-chairman Frank suggested that the department views the bill from the perspective of an abused child while the focus of the legislation is frustration felt by parents who have no ability to deal with or cure runaway situations. Mrs. Carpeneti cautioned against applying prohibitions to a neighbor who might provide shelter in instances when a parent is unable to give rational permission. Co-chairman Frank suggested that affirmative defense provisions would cover that situation. Mrs. Carpeneti cautioned against holding people criminally liable and placing them in need of invoking an affirmative defense when they are only attempting to do good by taking in a runaway child. Co-chairman Frank reiterated that the present situation is a mess. Senator Randy Phillips stressed need for a "real world" solution from the department. Mrs. Carpeneti replied that her first suggestion would be to leave existing law intact. It is working and poses no problem to prosecution. Mrs. Carpeneti said the department does not oppose the provision for placement of runaways in semi-secure shelters. Senator Donley suggested that an affirmative defense would not be necessary if language within subsection (4) was expanded to include "unless the person reasonably believed the child was in danger of physical injury or in need of temporary shelter." Mrs. Carpeneti concurred in the suggestion. She further noted that the department suggested inclusion of "knowledge and/or permission" at page 2, line 4, for good reason. She characterized as unfair committee assertions that the department was "throwing up roadblocks" to proposed changes. She noted that the department worked with the sponsor and staff on the recent draft. In response to a question from Senator Sharp, Mrs. Carpeneti explained that contributing to the delinquency of a minor is a class-A misdemeanor incurring a maximum $5,000 fine or one year in jail. DEL SMITH, Deputy Commissioner, Dept. of Public Safety, next came before committee to respond to questions. Co-chairman Halford asked if there had been prosecution problems under AS 11.51.130. Mr. Smith said he did not know, advising that local law enforcement would be more likely to deal with the issue. He added that he had heard of no objection to proposals within the bill. In response to a comment from Senator Donley concerning fiscal note analysis language citing "inestimable" costs, Mr. Smith said he did not want to "come up with a cost that I am unable to support, for any particular reason." It is unknown how much additional trooper time might be needed before a minor is returned home or placed in another appropriate location. Senator Donley voiced support for funding of the legislation. Senator Rieger referenced language at the top of page 3 and noted that it requires that the peace officer give the "highest priority" to taking a minor to a semi-secure facility. He then asked if language is, inadvertently, too strong. He questioned what would happen if a local shelter was available but the semi-secure facility was some distance away. A literal interpretation indicates that the peace officer must take the runaway to the semi-secure location. Mr. Smith concurred in that concern. AL NEAR next spoke via teleconference from Fairbanks. He advised that the runaway problem in Alaska, and the United States as a whole, is reaching epidemic proportions. It is increasingly touching the lives of middle-class families attempting to instill traditional values. Laws enacted to protect abused and neglected children are being exploited by rebellious minors challenging authority. Beginning in the mid-1970s, federal law recognized the importance of not treating abused and neglected minors like criminals. Laws from that philosophy require the least restrictive settings for juveniles in custody. To achieve mandates at the state level, certain federal funds for juvenile programs are contingent upon compliance. Detention of juveniles for running away would place $150.0 in grant moneys at risk. The foregoing approach overlooks merely rebellious young people who, on advice of peers, exploit these laws and manipulate the system. These minors know that law enforcement agencies do not aggressively pursue runaways or those who harbor them. The proposed bill addresses some deficiencies. It falls short of dealing with runaways who refuse to remain in shelters. Minors must learn that running away from authority is not an option. If juveniles run away from a semi-secure facility, "They should be placed in a secure one." Early intervention is the key to saving these children. Law enforcement officers concur that the first hours are the most dangerous. Mr. Near next attested to a case in Fairbanks where a young man was cited for contributing to the delinquency of a minor because on numerous occasions officers found that he had a number of young, runaway, teenage girls in his apartment. He noted that prosecution for the offense has not produced the desired result. Senator Rieger inquired concerning the number of runaways fitting into particular categories. Mr. Near voiced his impression that the majority are young people running away from authority. CAROL GORDON voiced support for the legislation, terming it a "step in the right direction." She acknowledged that it will not solve the problem of children "on the run" to escape responsibility for their own actions or who do not want parental supervision. She told of the inability of her sixteen-year old to handle the street life he has chosen. The Dept. of Health and Social Services would not get involved in the case because he was not abused or neglected at home. Mrs. Gordon described the circumstances by which psychiatrists and psychologists recommended that he be placed on 24-hour sight and sound watch because he is considered a danger to others. Yet, he was free to walk away and is now on the street. Mrs. Gordon said she was advised there is nothing that can be done about his being on the street. As an adoptive parent, Mrs. Gordon acknowledged that she is responsible for "anything this boy may do." He has stolen automobiles, vandalized property, and been arrested several times for shoplifting. Loopholes in existing law must be plugged. Senator Randy Phillips stressed need to give more rights to parents. He suggested that much of the problem is simply rebellion against parental authority. Co-chairman Halford concurred. LORI BACKES next testified. She expressed pride in her fifteen-year-old daughter whom she described as fearless, open minded, kind to those in need, and willing to sacrifice whatever is necessary for what she believes in. The downside is that she often places herself in danger and is easily persuaded by people who can take advantage of her. Her willingness to sacrifice has caused her to turn away from a loving home and family. Mrs. Backes stressed need to find her daughter and bring her home for her own protection. The first assumption by authorities was that she fled a hostile situation. That is not always the case. Passage of the proposed bill would create the support parents need to protect children. Mrs. Backes urged passage of the bill but noted the following: Sec. 3, page 3, line 23, language should say that young people will be stopped when they leave a semi-secure facility. Sec. 5, page 4, supervision should be placed in the legal guardian rather than the department. In her concluding remarks, Mrs. Backes referenced language at page 2 relating to the discretion of peace officers and suggested that officers be directed to tell juveniles to obey their parents, for their own good. FLORENCE LOUCKS, Director, Family Focus, Fairbanks Native Association, next spoke in support of the bill. She attested to an "extreme increase" in the number of young people accessing the shelter in the last five years. In 1990 the number approximated 100. Last year there were over 450. Not all of the children are runaways. In some cases the parents have requested time out. For others the police have been unable to locate the parents, and the shelter performs a holding function. While some are throw-aways, there is a "whole group of youth that really are evading parental authority." This is the group that comes in the front door and out the back. The proposed bill provides empowerment for parents and makes it possible to take action against individuals who harbor youths in situations that are not in the youth's best interest. Ms. Loucks attested to cases in which runaways have become involved in drugs or are sexually victimized. She stressed need for "some way of dealing with that group of people that sort of encourage youths to be delinquent; to act against their parents; to be on the street . . . ." Informal questionnaires completed by those coming through the shelter indicate that 90 percent have been involved in drugs or alcohol in some manner (experimentation through addiction). Ms. Louks reiterated support for the bill, saying that it would decrease exploitation and victimization of minors. Senator Rieger inquired concerning the percentage of young people fleeing abusive situations at home. Ms. Loucks advised of 5 to 10 percent referral from the Division of Family and Youth Services because of abuse. Not all situations result in an actual finding of abuse. Parents indicate that current law is written for those children. The majority of the youth passing through the shelter are involved in family conflicts at varying levels. Early intervention before these young people become involved with street youths or undesirable adult sheltering is essential. Ms. Loucks noted that one of the areas in family conflict stems from step parents and "significant others." That often requires counseling and work with all parties, but it is doable. Of those with whom the shelter has worked, the unification rate is approximately 87 percent. Senator Rieger inquired concerning the percentage of young people who are not involved in family conflict but attracted to gang involvement or a home other than their own. Ms. Loucks responded, "There is always an element, when we're talking about youth, that decide they don't want to do what their parents think they should do." Parents may not approve of friends or activities. It then becomes a conflict for the youth. Ms. Loucks further advised of a group of young people that "have severe emotional problems, and families have done everything that they can." That is another group--a small percentage but a very serious one. JUDY SCHIFFLER next spoke in support of the bill and thanked members for their efforts at improving the legislation for the safety of young people and the strengthening of the family unit. She voiced concern, however, that semi-secure provisions would not prevent a negative pattern from continuing. Through the information pipeline, young people are aware that being picked up by authorities and placed in a semi-secure facility is "just an inconvenient stop on the way back to the streets or to the hang out with their group . . . of undesirables." She attested to the fact that many of these young people are being used by undesirable adults. Ms. Schiffler advised of need to strengthen the consequences for running away from a semi-secure facility. A further step should be added to place young people in a more secure surrounding. There is need for earlier intervention and increasingly tougher consequences rather than a revolving door. She urged members to add provisions for a second placement. DANA BROWN next spoke in support of the legislation, saying that it represents a step in the right direction. She advised that the problem is much larger than issues addressed in the bill. She then described situations involved in dealing with her twelve-year-old, ADD-diagnosed son. Ms. Brown told of his rebellion against teachers, and the junior high school's inability to physically restrain him. She attested to attempts to obtain a court order to have him detained for 72 hours and evaluated and controlled. In the meantime, her son survived a gun shot wound to the chest from a seventeen year old using a stolen gun. Ms. Brown stressed that parents with children in this situation have no control under current law. END: SFC-96, #37, Side 2 BEGIN: SFC-96, #38, Side 1 Co-chairman Halford acknowledged complaints from constituents that present law does not provide authority for parents to "do something that we thought was a legitimate parental responsibility." The Co-chairman next addressed constitutional issues associated with the bill. [A transcript of those comments follows.] Co-chairman Halford: One of the things we've got to face head on is the constitutional question. And one of the ways to face that, I think, is with a findings and purpose section in this bill. We have got to be able to deal with the question of confinement or we'll never get to the second tier. . . . Co-chairman Halford: The question of the constitutionality and the rights of a minor with regard to confinement . . . I know they're different than the rights of an adult. But, we really need some kind of an analysis of what the courts have said in this state, and what we could put in a bill that was a set of findings and purpose that said essentially . . . that the problem is epidemic, that we find it to be a threat to both the public health and safety and the individual health and safety of the person. Try and reach out to whatever terms the court has used every time they've overruled or worked against us on control of minors and pick up the terms that they use to allow us the maximum amount of control in this area. . . . Senator Sharp: I think also that, hopefully, there's some way with that preamble, in trying to build it into statute, in defining the seriousness of the problem, there should be some way to justify extended protective custody for juveniles. Which could be the next step up from just . . . Co-chairman Halford: Well, we have to beef up the penalties against people who enable that kind of performance and don't do it in the sense of helping a kid, because there really is a problem. And we need to find out if there's a finding that we can put in the bill that says that 90% of these people are, in fact, acting out against authority, and 10% are avoiding a truly unfair situation. [If that is the case,] then we ought to be knowing that. There has got to be a standard there somewhere--in the court cases. And it's going to take some research. I'm not willing to wait for a commission. But I do think we have to, at least, get a legal analysis of what we can do to make our best constitutional argument. . . . Co-chairman Halford: [To Mrs. Carpeneti] Could you propose a findings section for us that is as strong as we can get? . . . Co-chairman Frank: Mr. Chairman, I'd like to clarify your request. Are you referring to the idea of a secure environment? . . . Co-chairman Halford: Yes. Unless we have a situation where parental authority is going to, in some way, be enforced, then it's going to be ignored. If we're going to hold parents responsible for the actions of their kids, then parents have got to have the tools to be able to control the actions of their kids. . . . Co-chairman Halford: It's not just the loopholes in existing law, it's the constitutional protections that we haven't worked our way around, basically. And I think we have to figure out how to do that. Number one, a juvenile does not have the same set of rights as an adult, particularly as compared to the exercise of parental authority. We need to know what the definition of that is . . . . There have got to be some limits there, and they've got to be set out by court cases, and we need to know. And we want to go as far as we can possibly constitutionally go. Co-chairman Halford reiterated need for ability of parents to control the actions of their children. If a minor leaves home when he or she is not to, the police should bring the minor back home. Co-chairman Frank voiced need for the next step. If a youth runs from a semi-secure facility, he or she should be placed in a secure place. Lack of that is the weak spot in the system. Senator Sharp stressed need to ensure that those who encourage juveniles to leave home and shelter them should be guilty of an automatic violation unless they notify the police or parent within 24 hours. Current statutes and punishments relating to contributing to the delinquency of a minor are not effective. Co-chairman Frank suggested that the state is not able to effectively prosecute because of loopholes in existing law. Co-chairman Halford thanked teleconference participants for their interest in the legislation. Co-chairman Frank concurred. Co-chairman Halford directed that the bill be held in committee for additional discussion during the coming week. ADJOURNMENT The meeting was adjourned at approximately 10:55 a.m.