Legislature(2003 - 2004)

04/29/2004 09:05 AM FIN

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
                              MINUTES                                                                                         
                     SENATE FINANCE COMMITTEE                                                                                 
                          April 29, 2004                                                                                      
                              9:05 AM                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
TAPES                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
SFC-04 # 100, Side A                                                                                                            
SFC 04 # 100, Side B                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
CALL TO ORDER                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Lyda  Green convened the meeting at approximately  9:05 AM.                                                            
                                                                                                                                
PRESENT                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Senator Lyda Green, Co-Chair                                                                                                    
Senator Gary Wilken, Co-Chair                                                                                                   
Senator Con Bunde, Vice Chair                                                                                                   
Senator Fred Dyson                                                                                                              
Senator Donny Olson                                                                                                             
Senator Ben Stevens                                                                                                             
Senator Lyman Hoffman                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Also Attending:  SENATOR  KIM ELTON;  SENATOR  GRETCHEN GUESS;  GREG                                                          
PEASE, Executive Director,  Gastineau Human Services; JERRY BURNETT,                                                            
Director, Administrative  Services, Department of  Corrections; MARC                                                            
ANTRIM, Commissioner,  Department  of Corrections; MYRA PUGH,  Staff                                                            
to Senator Bettye Davis;  RICHARD BENAVIDES, Staff to Senator Bettye                                                            
Davis; NANCY  WELCH, Special  Assistant to  Commissioner Tom  Irwin,                                                            
Department of Natural Resources;  SHARON BARTON, Director, Permanent                                                            
Fund Dividend Division, Department of Revenue                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Attending  via  Teleconference:  From  Offnet  Sites:  FRANK  SMITH,                                                          
Independent  Criminal  Justice  Researcher;  DANA  BROWN,  Certified                                                            
Direct  Entry Midwife  and Director,  Alaska Family  Health &  Birth                                                            
Clinic;  ELISE  HSIEH,  Assistant  Attorney General,  Environmental                                                             
Section,  Civil   Division  (Anchorage),  Department   of  Law;  BOB                                                            
LOEFFLER, Director,  Division of Mining, Land and  Water, Department                                                            
of Natural Resources; From  Anchorage: SHELBY LARSEN, Administrator,                                                            
Certification & Licensing,  Division of Public Health, Department of                                                            
Health and Social Services                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
SUMMARY INFORMATION                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
SB 313-FIRST SUPPLEMENTAL APPROPRIATION                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
The  Committee adopted  one  amendment and  reported  the bill  from                                                            
Committee.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
SB 65-CORRECTIONAL FACILITY EXPANSION                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
The  Committee heard  from  the bill's  sponsor,  the Department  of                                                            
Corrections,  and took public testimony.  One amendment was  adopted                                                            
and the bill reported from Committee.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
SB 349-MIDWIFERY BIRTH CENTER LICENSING                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
The  Committee heard  from  the bill's  sponsor,  the Department  of                                                            
Health  and Social  Services, and  took public  testimony. The  bill                                                            
reported from Committee.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
SB 393-TAKE PERM FUND DIVIDEND FOR UNIV FEES                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
The Committee  adopted a committee substitute and  reported the bill                                                            
from Committee.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
SB 282-PREPARED FOOD: WILD/FARMED FISH DISCLOSURE                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
The Committee  heard from the bill's  sponsor and the Department  of                                                            
Law. The bill was held in Committee.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
HB 486-MINING RECLAMATION ASSURANCES/FUND                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
The Committee  heard from  the Department  of Natural Resources  and                                                            
reported the bill from Committee.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
SB 284-PF DIVIDEND APPLICATION RECORDS PRIVATE                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
The Committee  heard from the bill'6s sponsor and  the Department of                                                            
Revenue. A  committee substitute was  adopted and the bill  was held                                                            
in Committee.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
SB 393-TAKE PERM FUND DIVIDEND FOR UNIV FEES                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
This bill was scheduled but not heard.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     SENATE BILL NO. 313                                                                                                        
     "An Act making supplemental and other appropriations; amending                                                             
     appropriations; making an appropriation to capitalize a fund;                                                              
     and providing for an effective date."                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
This  was the third  hearing  for this  bill in  the Senate  Finance                                                            
Committee.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green reminded  the  Committee  that during  the  previous                                                            
hearing on  this bill, the discussion  focused on the Department  of                                                            
Natural Resources'  and the Department  of Revenue's involvement  in                                                            
the endeavor to further a natural gas pipeline.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Amendment #5:  This amendment inserts a new subsection  into Section                                                            
14. DEPARTMENT  OF NATURAL RESOURCES,  page 20, line 11 as  follows.                                                            
                                                                                                                                
          ( ) The sum of $1,580,000 is appropriated from the                                                                    
     general  fund to the Department  of Natural Resources  for risk                                                            
     analysis  related  to the state  gas pipeline  and to  bringing                                                            
     North Slope natural gas to market.                                                                                         
          ( ) The sum of $3,900,000 is appropriated from the                                                                    
     general  fund  to  the  Department  of  Natural  Resources  for                                                            
     permitting and application  processing related to the state gas                                                            
     pipeline  right-of-way  work related  to bringing  North  Slope                                                            
     natural gas to market.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
In addition  a new  subsection is  added to Sec.  16. DEPARTMENT  OF                                                            
REVENUE, page 21, line 11 as follows.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
          ( ) The sum of $3,400,000 is appropriated to the                                                                      
     Department of Revenue  for work related to bringing North Slope                                                            
     natural gas to market from the following sources:                                                                          
                General fund              $2,400,000                                                                            
                Statutory designated                                                                                            
                     Program receipts      1,000,000                                                                            
          ( ) The sum of $1,700,000 is appropriated to the                                                                      
     Department of Revenue  for work related to bringing North Slope                                                            
     natural gas to market from the following sources:                                                                          
                General fund              $1,200,000                                                                            
                Statutory designated                                                                                            
                     Program receipts        500,000                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
For further  clarification,  the following  language is included  in                                                            
the amendment.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
     All  the subsections  added by this  amendment are for  capital                                                            
     projects and lapse under AS 37.25.020.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     The second subsection  for the Department of Natural Resources,                                                            
     totaling $3,900,000, is effective July 1, 2004.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     The second subsection  for the Department of Natural Resources,                                                            
     totaling $1,700,000, is effective July 1, 2004.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green moved to adopt Amendment #5.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Wilken objected for explanation.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green  explained   that  these  funds  would  support  the                                                            
Departments' involvement  in the gas line endeavor.  Adoption of the                                                            
amendment would  oblige Governor Frank Murkowski's  request "to move                                                            
forward" in furthering the gas pipeline project.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Wilken removed his objection.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
There being no further objection, Amendment #5 was ADOPTED.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Wilken  asked  that the  Legislative  Legal  and  Research                                                            
Services Division be allowed  to make technical changes to SB 313 as                                                            
deemed necessary.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
There being no objection, the request was approved.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green  explained that, to date, $13 million  of a total $15                                                            
million  General Fund (GF)  supplemental budget  allowance  that was                                                            
included in the FY 2004  budget, has been allocated. In prior years,                                                            
the  supplemental appropriation  request  has  been as  much as  $71                                                            
million.  Tremendous  effort  has been  undertaken  regarding  "what                                                            
truly  needs  to  be  included  and  what  truly  is  important"  in                                                            
determining the supplemental  request amount that should be included                                                            
in  the appropriation   budget. She  voiced  appreciation  to  State                                                            
departments  for the consideration  given to the budgeting  process,                                                            
the amendments  to  the supplemental  budget,  and the supplemental                                                             
requests that have been submitted.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green reviewed the  projects that  have been added  to the                                                            
bill thought the adoptions of Amendments #1 through #5.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Senator  Bunde commented  that,  even though  he did  not object  to                                                            
Amendment   #5,  he  has  concerns   regarding  the  $10.5   million                                                            
expenditure.  He acknowledged  that the excitement  of developing  a                                                            
gas pipeline is a factor  in the allowance of this request. However,                                                            
he declared that were other  departments to submit "generalities" as                                                            
the Department  of Natural Resources has, the Committee  "would have                                                            
been  very critical"  and  would have  demanded more  detail.  While                                                            
other Departments  "have been  asked to be  lean and mean and  to do                                                            
more with  less,"  the Committee  has been incredibly  flexible  and                                                            
generous due to the nature  of the request. In conclusion, he voiced                                                            
the "hope that our hopes are not misguided."                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green,   noting  that  Senator   Bunde  had  chaired   the                                                            
Department of Natural Resources  budget subcommittee, commented that                                                            
the  overall Department  budget  is  "lean and  mean."  It could  be                                                            
argued  that the  State could  never do  enough in  its endeavor  to                                                            
develop its natural resources;  and in that regard, the Department's                                                            
budget has  been "on the shy side"  in recent years. The  Department                                                            
has stressed that  it would attempt to generate revenue,  would seek                                                            
matching  funds,  and would  use  these  funds  in the  best  manner                                                            
possible.  She  wished the  Department  success  in its  efforts  to                                                            
further the gas pipeline project.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Senator Bunde  agreed that the rest  of Department's budget  is lean                                                            
and mean; however,  he argued that the addition of  the gas pipeline                                                            
project  funding would  "dissipate"  that leanness.  He quoted  that                                                            
"bureaucracies'  first goal is to  maintain and expand itself."  The                                                            
Department would find a  manner through which to expend every dollar                                                            
that is provided to them.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Wilken expressed  confidence  that the  funds provided  to                                                            
support the  gas pipeline endeavor  would be fruitful; particularly                                                             
as he  respects the ability  of Steve Porter,  Deputy Commissioner,                                                             
Department of  Revenue, to utilize his private sector  experience to                                                            
further this endeavor.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Senator  Olson   voiced  that  it  might  be  unrealistic   for  the                                                            
Departments  to expend  in excess  of five million  dollars on  this                                                            
project before the end  of the FY 04 fiscal year in approximately 60                                                            
days.                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green reminded  the Committee of the Departments' testimony                                                            
regarding the  "time-sensitive" nature of the work  relating to this                                                            
request.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Senator  Olson voiced  surprise  that  the Departments  could  spend                                                            
approximately three million dollars a month in this endeavor.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Senator  Dyson   shared  Co-Chair   Wilken's  confidence   that  the                                                            
Departments' project  management team would be very  "responsible in                                                            
their stewardship"  of this  endeavor. He  compared the endeavor  of                                                            
negotiating with the oil  industry on this project to being a player                                                            
"in  the  world's  biggest  poker  game,"  in  that  it  requires  a                                                            
tremendous amount  of funds to play and that the rewards,  while not                                                            
guaranteed,  "are worth the risk."  He expressed that the  State has                                                            
reached a "critical  juncture, and  that opportunities such  as this                                                            
are rare and should not be missed.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Senator Hoffman pointed  out that the backup material specifies that                                                            
several of the  natural gas pipeline projects must  be funded beyond                                                            
the end of the FY 04 fiscal year.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green  pointed out that the  explanatory comments  attached                                                            
to Amendment  #5  specify that  $1.7 million  of  the Department  of                                                            
Revenue  and $3.9  million of the  Department  of Natural  Resources                                                            
total requests would become available on July 1, 2004.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Senator   Hoffman  observed   that  similar   differential   funding                                                            
explanatory language is  included in Amendment #4 for the Department                                                            
of Law.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green concurred                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Senator Dyson  reminded that the Senate  Resources Committee  has on                                                            
contract, an internationally  renowned resource professional who has                                                            
independently  endorsed the Legislature's actions  in this endeavor.                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Senator Hoffman  asked the  total amount  of general funds,  federal                                                            
funds, and  other funds, including  funds provided by Amendments  #1                                                            
through #5 that would be appropriated in this supplemental bill.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green stated that this information would be provided.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
AT EASE: 9:20 AM / 9:21 AM                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Wilken  moved to report SB 313, as amended,  from Committee                                                            
with individual recommendations and accompanying fiscal note.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
[NOTE: Due  to technical  difficulties, the  following exchange  was                                                            
not recorded.]                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Senator Hoffman  commented that this  bill is an appropriation  bill                                                            
and as such has no accompanying fiscal note.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Wilken acknowledged, and corrected his motion.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
AT EASE 9:21 AM / 9:22 AM                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
[NOTE: Recording resumes.]                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green  commented,  for the  record,  that there  has  been                                                            
concern  regarding payments  for current  and forthcoming  long-term                                                            
health  care.  The  Department  of Health  and  Social  Services  is                                                            
attempting  to rectify the  situation in a  manner that would  incur                                                            
the  least  negative  impact  on  individuals.  This  bill  contains                                                            
authorization language  that is required in order to release federal                                                            
funds that are available.  This concern is the result of "a delay in                                                            
the  payment"  to certain  vendors  as opposed  to  "a non-payment"                                                             
scenario.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Senator Hoffman stated  that a recent Anchorage Daily News newspaper                                                            
article  alluded  that  these  funds  were  being  withheld  by  the                                                            
Legislative  minority, as a negotiation  tool. He declared,  for the                                                            
record, that  he has not been involved  in any such tactics  in this                                                            
regard.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green furthered  declared  that  none of  the Committee's                                                             
members have participated in efforts in this regard.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
There being no objection  to the motion, CS SB 313(FIN) was REPORTED                                                            
from Committee.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
[NOTE: Co-Chair Wilken chaired the remainder of the meeting.]                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Wilken  informed  the Committee  that  the Constitutional                                                             
Budget  Reserve (CBR)  fund balance  at the beginning  of the  FY 04                                                            
fiscal  year  was   $2.07  billion,  and,  according   to  a  recent                                                            
Legislative  Finance Division  projection, the  balance on  June 30,                                                            
2004 should be  $2.4 billion. The increase is due  to such things as                                                            
a recovering stock market.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     SENATE BILL NO. 65                                                                                                         
     "An  Act authorizing  the Department  of  Corrections to  enter                                                            
     into agreements with  municipalities for new or expanded public                                                            
     correctional  facilities in the  Fairbanks North Star  Borough,                                                            
     the Matanuska-Susitna  Borough, Bethel, and the Municipality of                                                            
     Anchorage."                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
This  was the sixth  hearing  for this  bill in  the Senate  Finance                                                            
Committee.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Amendment #7:  This amendment replaces  the words "a minimum  of 25-                                                            
years"  with "a  term not  to exceed  25-years" in  Section 5,  page                                                            
four, line three,  of the Version 23-LS0392\E committee  substitute.                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green  moved  to  adopt  Amendment  #7.  This "technical"                                                             
amendment would address  the leasing of correctional facility space.                                                            
                                                                                                                                
There being no objection, Amendment #7 was ADOPTED.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Wilken  noted that Co-Chair Green has provided  a sectional                                                            
analysis  [copy on file]  for the Version  "E" committee  substitute                                                            
that was previously adopted by the Committee.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
GREG PEASE, Executive  Director, Gastineau Human Services  and Board                                                            
Member  representing  the  States  of  Washington,   Oregon,  Idaho,                                                            
Alaska,   and  Montana  on   the  American   Probation  and   Parole                                                            
Association, shared  with the Committee "the importance  of programs                                                            
that  assist  offenders,  victims  and  communities,  and  community                                                            
assets"  treatment  and  support groups;  specifically  faith-based                                                             
community initiatives  that assist in re-entering  violent offenders                                                            
back  into   the  community.  He   noted  that  when  contemplating                                                             
legislation  such  as this  bill  that addresses  the  expansion  of                                                            
correctional  facilities,  it should  be  noted that  current  State                                                            
Statutes require that six  months prior to an inmate's release date,                                                            
that individual  should attend a community  residential center  that                                                            
would assist  them in  reentering  a community.  He urged that  this                                                            
requirement   be  continued   "if   not  expanded."   He   supported                                                            
incarcerating  people  in the  State as  opposed to  outside of  the                                                            
State  facilities  as it  would allow  them  to be  closer to  their                                                            
families and  support groups. Therefore,  he urged the Committee  to                                                            
be aware that,  in addition to housing needs, program  needs must be                                                            
provided for.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Pease  also asked  members to  question the  reason why  so many                                                            
individuals are  being incarcerated "to begin with."  He noted that,                                                            
in  this  State, the  majority  of  those  incarcerated  are  Alaska                                                            
Natives.  More importantly,  he urged the  Members to consider  what                                                            
happens to inmates  upon their release from jail.  He expressed that                                                            
the United  States  has experienced  "a prison/jail  building  boon"                                                            
which,  he  stated must  be  recognized  as providing  "short-term,                                                             
temporary   low-income  housing   for,  primarily,   mental   health                                                            
beneficiaries  in this State." He  pointed out that the majority  of                                                            
the  individuals  serving  time  in  State  prisons  and  jails  are                                                            
probation and parole violators.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Senator Dyson  questioned the relevance  of Mr. Pease's comments  to                                                            
this bill.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Pease  expressed that  while this bill  would provide more  jail                                                            
facilities,  it  does  not address  the  aftermath  faced  by  those                                                            
incarcerated  once  they  are  released   from  prison.  Other  than                                                            
providing  a big  building,  this  legislation  does not  provide  a                                                            
support  system to assist  individuals re-entering  society.  Absent                                                            
this focus, he attested,  a cycle of re-offending would evolve. This                                                            
in turn would require more facilities to be available.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Senator  Dyson ascertained;  therefore,  that the  testifier is  not                                                            
speaking in  opposition to the bill,  but is rather speaking  to the                                                            
fact that this legislation  only addresses a portion of the problem.                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Mr.  Pease commented  that  the number  of incarcerated  parole  and                                                            
probation re-offenders  is a testament that the State  does not have                                                            
a  proven success  rate  in  keeping people  from  re-offending.  In                                                            
addition  to  the  money  being  expended   to  construct  a  prison                                                            
facility, funding must  be included to support the Therapeutic Court                                                            
and other mandatory programs.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Senator  Dyson  understood  therefore,  that  the testifier  is  not                                                            
against the bill.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Senator  Bunde asked  for clarification  that the  testifier is  not                                                            
implying  that people have  been incarcerated  without committing  a                                                            
crime.                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Pease responded no,  the intent of his testimony is to highlight                                                            
the  need   to  provide   assistance  to   people  while  they   are                                                            
incarcerated that would assist them upon their release.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green, the bill's  sponsor, informed the Committee that, at                                                            
her request,  the Department of Corrections  would be testifying  to                                                            
provide expertise  regarding the technical aspects  of the bill. The                                                            
testimony would be provided in a neutral manner.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair   Wilken  acknowledged   Co-Chair   Green's  comments   and                                                            
specified that,  were the Department uncomfortable  with a question,                                                            
Co-Chair Green would address it.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
JERRY  BURNETT, Director,  Administrative  Services,  Department  of                                                            
Corrections,  read  information from  the  aforementioned  Sectional                                                            
Analysis of the Version "E" committee substitute as follows.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
     Sections  1, Section  2, and Section  3. Requires correctional                                                             
     officers,  parole officers, and  probation officers  working in                                                            
     all correctional  facilities  in the State of Alaska  to have a                                                            
     valid  certificate   issued  by  the Alaska   Police  Standards                                                            
     Council.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
     Section 4. Authorizes  the Department of Corrections (not later                                                            
     than July 1, 2009)  to enter into agreements with the Fairbanks                                                            
     North  Star Borough,  the  Matanuska-Susitna  Borough,  Bethel,                                                            
     Municipality  of  Anchorage  and  city  of Seward  for  new  or                                                            
     expanded correctional  facilities. The authorization is subject                                                            
     to 5 conditions.                                                                                                           
     (1)  Average  capital cost per  bed may not exceed $135,000  in                                                            
          the Fairbanks North Star Borough (up to 80 beds),                                                                     
          Matanuska-Susitna Borough (1,200 to 2,251 beds),                                                                      
          Municipality of Anchorage (up to 200 beds) and City of                                                                
          Seward (up to 144 beds); and must not exceed $155,000 a                                                               
          bed for Bethel. These costs are adjusted for inflation.                                                               
     (2)  For  new facility construction, the municipality  will own                                                            
          the facility and the state will operated the facility.                                                                
          The state will lease the facility for a term of not more                                                              
          than 25 years with annual lease payment not exceeding                                                                 
          $11,600 a bed. (Similar to Anchorage Jail and Spring                                                                  
          Creek Correctional Center in Seward)                                                                                  
     (3)  For  expansion  of existing  facilities,  there will  be a                                                            
          joint ownership agreement between the municipality and                                                                
          the state and the state will operate the facility. The                                                                
          state will lease for not more than 25 years and payments                                                              
          may not exceed $16,700 a bed for the Bethel facility and                                                              
          $14,600 a bed fro the Fairbanks, Anchorage and Seward                                                                 
          facilities. The state will own these facilities, so will                                                              
          own the newly expanded parts as well).                                                                                
     (4)  Lease   agreements   must   allow  the   Commissioner   of                                                            
          Corrections to terminate the contract for cause.                                                                      
     (5)  The  Commissioner may not enter into an agreement if bonds                                                            
          issued for the new or expanded facilities are below                                                                   
          investment grade. (Investment grade is a term of art that                                                             
          means single A or better - see Alaska Permanent Fund                                                                  
          Statute: Investment responsibilities of the board AS                                                                  
          37.13.120(g)(7)                                                                                                       
     Further,  expansion of the Anchorage jail may  only occur if it                                                            
     is funded by up to $30,000,000 in federal receipts.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Wilken  asked for further information regarding  the single                                                            
"A" bonding requirement.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Burnett  stated that the language  in Section 4, subsection  (5)                                                            
indicates that a test regarding  the bonding capacity of the bonding                                                            
community and  the State must be considered,  as the bonds  would be                                                            
State debt under the aforementioned definition.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MARC ANTRIM,  Commissioner,  Department of  Corrections, noted  that                                                            
this  language   addresses  one  area  of  concern   raised  by  the                                                            
Department of Corrections.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Burnett  referred the Committee  to the "CSSB 65 Version  E Cost                                                            
Comparison"   chart  attached   to  the   aforementioned   Sectional                                                            
Analysis,  that  specifies  that the  total  cost of  expanding  the                                                            
Fairbanks   Correctional  Facility   by  80-beds  would   amount  to                                                            
$10,800,000.  To provide two additional  security guards  per shift,                                                            
11 new positions  would be required.  The City of Fairbanks'  annual                                                            
lease debt service would  equate to $1,076,000, the annual operating                                                            
expenses  would be  $1,329,200. Thus,  the total  annual cost  would                                                            
amount to $2,405,200.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Wilken understood  therefore that  the total bond  package                                                            
required to expand the  Fairbanks correctional facility by up to 80-                                                            
beds would  be $10,800,000,  based on a per  bed maximum expense  of                                                            
$135,000.  The  State  could  not  enter   into  a  lease  agreement                                                            
exceeding  25  years nor  exceed  an inflation  adjusted  amount  of                                                            
$1,076,000  per year. Operating costs  of $1,329,200 per  year would                                                            
be borne by the State,  and, at the end of those 25 years, the State                                                            
would own the expanded facility.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Burnett  clarified that  the aforementioned  expansion  expenses                                                            
would  be in affect  were  a 15-year  lease in  place. Annual  costs                                                            
would be lower were a 25-year lease in place.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Wilken  understood therefore that an annual  revenue stream                                                            
of $1,076,000 would be  required to support bonds based on a 15-year                                                            
lease.                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Mr.  Burnett  agreed that  this  would  be the  amount  required  to                                                            
support "the pass through lease cost net."                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Senator  Hoffman asked  for confirmation  that  the "Annual  Capital                                                            
Costs (lease  debt service)" column  on the chart depicts  a 15-year                                                            
lease amount.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Burnett affirmed.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Burnett stated that  the Department's fiscal note was calculated                                                            
based upon this Cost Comparison chart.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Mr.  Burnett  read  the  City  of  Whittier  correctional   facility                                                            
information, as depicted  in Section 5 of the Sectional Analysis, as                                                            
follows.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
     Section 5. Authorizes  the Department of Corrections (not later                                                            
     than July 1, 2006)  to enter into an agreement with the City of                                                            
     Whittier  to acquire correctional  facility space for  at least                                                            
     25 years  and facility operational  services for not  more than                                                            
     five  years. Before  entering  into a contract,  Department  of                                                            
     Corrections  and  Administration  must  conduct  a feasibility                                                             
     study  to  determine  whether   the  state  can  provide  these                                                            
     services  for  the  same   or less   cost  than  a third-party                                                             
     operator.  An agreement  with the  City of  Whittier cannot  be                                                            
     made  unless the state  cannot provide  these services  for the                                                            
     same or less cost.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
     Further,  an  agreement  between  the  state  and the  City  of                                                            
     Whittier  requires an  agreement between  the City of  Whittier                                                            
     and  a  3rd party  contractor  to  construct  and  operate  the                                                            
     facility.  The agreement between  the City of Whittier  and the                                                            
     3rd  party  contractor  must  be based  on  a  competitive  bid                                                            
     process.  The City of  Whittier must  follow state procurement                                                             
     procedures.  The Commissioner  of correction also must  approve                                                            
     the facility design before the agreement.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
     Authorization   for the  agreement  is  subject  to  5  further                                                            
     conditions:                                                                                                                
     (1)  Must  be a minimum of 1200 beds and a maximum of 2251 beds                                                            
          and payments by DOC must be sufficient to cover all                                                                   
          capital and operating costs, not including inmate                                                                     
          transportation.                                                                                                       
     (2)  The  obligation  of DOC  to make  payments  is subject  to                                                            
         annual appropriation of funds by the legislature.                                                                      
     (3)  The  Commissioner of corrections retains  the authority to                                                            
          terminate the contract with the third party.                                                                          
     (4)  The  contract between the  City of Whittier and  the third                                                            
          party must require culturally relevant reformation                                                                    
         services to incarcerated Alaska Native offenders.                                                                      
     (5)  No  agreement can  be made  if the bonds  issue are  rated                                                            
          below investment grade (Single A or lower)                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     The City  of Whittier may issue  bonds to finance construction                                                             
     of the facility.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Burnett  reminded the Committee  that the adoption of  Amendment                                                            
#7  changed the  lease  agreement with  Whittier  to a  term not  to                                                            
exceed 25 years.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Wilken  inquired the reason  this agreement is specific  to                                                            
the City of Whittier.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green   explained  that  this  bill  evolved   as  several                                                            
different  pieces  of  legislation  regarding   prison  issues  were                                                            
consolidated.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Wilken  asked that further  discussion be held until  after                                                            
Mr. Burnett concludes his review of the sectional analysis.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Burnett  read the sectional  analysis  pertaining to Sections  6                                                            
and 7 as follows.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     Section  6.  Authorizes  the  state  bond  committee  to  issue                                                            
     certificates  of participation to provide state  matching funds                                                            
     to  assist with  the  cost of  construction  of community  jail                                                            
     facilities in Kodiak  and Dillingham ($4 million for both). The                                                            
     annual rental obligations  for the certificates ($400,000) will                                                            
     be paid  by the state on an annual  basis. The total  estimated                                                            
     cost  to the state to  pay off the  certificates is $6  million                                                            
     (the estimate  includes total payments, credit  enhancement and                                                            
     underwriting  expenses, rating agency fees, bond  counsel fees,                                                            
     financial   advisor   fees,   printing  fees,   trustee   fees,                                                            
     advertising fees,  capitalized interest, interest earnings, and                                                            
     other costs of issuance  and required reserves). The state bond                                                            
     committee  may not authorize  the issuance  of certificates  of                                                            
     participation  if the  issuance lowers  the state's credit  and                                                            
     the certificates are rated below investment grade.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
     Section  7.  Approves  community  jail  facilities  to  receive                                                            
     proceeds of the certificates  of participation authorized under                                                            
     sec. 6 if  the community is able to provide their  share of the                                                            
     matching funds ($1.5  million each) to be used for the upgrade,                                                            
     expansion, or replacement  of the jail facilities at Dillingham                                                            
     Community   Jail  and   Kodiak  Community   Jail.  Subject   to                                                            
     appropriation,  the Department of Corrections  is authorized to                                                            
     pay the annual operating  costs associated with the addition of                                                            
     new beds at those two facilities.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Mr.  Burnett  noted  that  the  aforementioned   chart  depicts  the                                                            
projected  State  debt  service  and  increased  operational   costs                                                            
associated  with  expanding the  Kodiak  Jail by  six  beds and  the                                                            
Dillingham Jail by 17 beds.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Burnett read the final portions of the sectional analysis.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
     Section  8.  Provides  notice  and  approval  of  the  projects                                                            
     described in sec. 6.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
     Section 9. Repeals existing statute.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
      Section 10. Provides an effective date of July 1, 2004.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Wilken ordered the bill HELD in Committee.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
[NOTE: This bill was readdressed immediately following the 9:53 AM                                                              
recess.]                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
RECESS 9:53 AM / 2:59 PM                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     SENATE BILL NO. 65                                                                                                         
     "An  Act authorizing  the Department  of  Corrections to  enter                                                            
     into agreements with  municipalities for new or expanded public                                                            
     correctional  facilities in the  Fairbanks North Star  Borough,                                                            
     the Matanuska-Susitna  Borough, Bethel, and the Municipality of                                                            
     Anchorage."                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Wilken  announced  that  the  bill  is  again  before  the                                                            
Committee.  The sectional analysis  review was completed  during the                                                            
earlier hearing on the bill.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
SFC 04 # 100, Side B 03:00 PM                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
FRANK SMITH, Independent  Criminal Justice Researcher, testified via                                                            
teleconference from an  offnet site to share comments based upon his                                                            
33-year  experience  in pre-and-post-prison  releases  and  research                                                            
pertaining  to  the development  of  alternative  programs  in  this                                                            
regard.  For the past  eight years,  an area of  focus has been  the                                                            
development  of private prisons. He  voiced being pleased  with some                                                            
of the inclusions  in the committee  substitute, specifically  those                                                            
that would  require guards  and other employees  to meet  standards.                                                            
Several  states  are  addressing  similar   issues.  Continuing,  he                                                            
stressed the importance  of conducting an economic feasibility study                                                            
prior  to furthering  the construction  of the  Whittier prison,  as                                                            
when a similarly  remote site in Kansas  was being considered  for a                                                            
prison,  a  study  was conducted.  The  study  determined  that  the                                                            
facility would have been  "impossible to staff." He anticipated that                                                            
a prison in  Whittier would also have  staffing issues. He  recalled                                                            
that a study  [copy not provided]  that was conducted regarding  the                                                            
construction of a prison  in the Delta Junction area determined that                                                            
it would be impossible to make a profit at that location.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
There being  no further testifiers,  Co-Chair Wilken announced  that                                                            
public testimony on the bill was concluded.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Wilken  stated, for the record,  that he could not  support                                                            
establishing  a prison in  Whittier, as it  would place a strain  on                                                            
the community,  its schools and its  utilities system. Furthermore,                                                             
as  the City  of  Whittier's  school  system  is a  Rural  Education                                                            
Attendance Area (REAA),  it receives no local funding. Therefore, he                                                            
could  not  support  construction   of  a  prison  facility  in  the                                                            
community until the City  could absorb its school responsibility, as                                                            
other communities are required to do.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green moved to  report the bill, as amended, from Committee                                                            
with individual recommendations and accompanying fiscal notes.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
There  being  no  objection,  CS  SB  65  (FIN)  was  REPORTED  from                                                            
Committee  with a new  $260,000 fiscal  note, dated  April 29,  2004                                                            
from the Department of Corrections.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     SENATE BILL NO. 349                                                                                                        
     "An Act requiring licensure of midwifery birth centers; and                                                                
     providing for an effective date."                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
This  was the first  hearing  for this  bill in  the Senate  Finance                                                            
Committee.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Wilken stated  that  this bill  would establish  a  single                                                            
licensing standard for  birthing centers in the State. He noted that                                                            
of the six  birthing centers in the  State, five are registered  and                                                            
one is licensed.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
MYRA PUGH, Staff  to Senator Bettye Davis, the sponsor  of the bill,                                                            
stated  that the owners  of the  six birthing  centers in the  State                                                            
support the implementation  of a single State licensing standard for                                                            
birthing centers  as it would result in a single set  of regulations                                                            
and  annual  facility  inspections  are  in place.  She  noted  that                                                            
through  a collaborative  effort, birth center  owners reworked  the                                                            
State's existing  licensed birth center  regulations that  have been                                                            
in place  since  1983 and  submitted  their recommendations  to  the                                                            
rewriting  regulation  process.  Midwifes  of  Alaska  support  this                                                            
legislation and urge the Committee to do likewise.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
RICHARD  BENAVIDES,  Staff to  Senator  Bettye Davis,  referred  the                                                            
Committee to the  letter [copy on file] to Legislators,  dated March                                                            
12,  2004, from  Kay  Kanne, Director  of  the Juneau  Family  Birth                                                            
Center.   It  explains   the  legislative   history  pertaining   to                                                            
registered and licensed birth centers in the State.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
DANA BROWN,  Certified  Direct Entry  Midwife  and Director,  Alaska                                                            
Family Health  & Birth Clinic, testified via teleconference  from an                                                            
offnet  site  in Fairbanks  in  support  of the  bill,  as it  would                                                            
establish a single standard  and licensing process for birth centers                                                            
in the State.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
SHELBY LARSEN,  Administrator, Certification  & Licensing,  Division                                                            
of  Public  Health,  Department  of  Health   and Social   Services,                                                            
testified  via teleconference  from  Anchorage and  stated that  the                                                            
Department  supports the  bill as  the consensus  is that  licensing                                                            
standards for this industry should be established.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green  moved  to  report  the  bill  from  Committee  with                                                            
individual recommendations and accompanying fiscal notes.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
There being  no objection, SB 349  was REPORTED from Committee  with                                                            
$19,400  fiscal   note  #1,  dated  February  24,   2004,  from  the                                                            
Department of Health and Social Services.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     SENATE BILL NO. 393                                                                                                        
     "An  Act  relating  to  default on  tuition,  fees,  and  other                                                            
     charges of the University  of Alaska and to claims on permanent                                                            
     fund  dividends for  tuition, fees,  and other  charges of  the                                                            
     University of Alaska that are in default."                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
This was  the second  hearing for  this bill in  the Senate  Finance                                                            
Committee.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Wilken stated  that this bill would allow the University to                                                            
garnish an  individual's Permanent  Fund Dividend (PFD) for  tuition                                                            
and other University  of Alaska debts  owed by an individual.  A new                                                            
committee  substitute   has  been  developed  to  address   concerns                                                            
regarding  the ranking  of  the University's  claims  in regards  to                                                            
other claims against one's PFD.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green moved  to adopt  the Version  23-LS1945\D  committee                                                            
substitute as the working document.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
There being no  objection, the Version "D" committee  substitute was                                                            
adopted as the working document.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Wilken  explained that the ranking concern  is addressed in                                                            
Section  2, on  page two  beginning  on line  ten  of the  committee                                                            
substitute. The University  is now ranked in sixth place rather than                                                            
in fourth  place as originally  presented.  Both the University  and                                                            
the Alaska Permanent Fund  Corporation are agreeable to this change.                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green  moved  to  report  the  bill  from  Committee  with                                                            
individual recommendations and accompanying fiscal notes.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
There  being  no  objection,  CS SB  393  (FIN)  was  REPORTED  from                                                            
Committee a new $100,000  fiscal note, dated April 28, 2004 from the                                                            
University of Alaska and  a new $15,000 fiscal note, dated April 25,                                                            
2004 from the Department of Revenue.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
AT EASE: 3:12 PM / 3:13 PM                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     CS FOR SENATE BILL NO. 282(RES)                                                                                            
     "An Act relating to the identification of finfish in food                                                                  
     products and to the  misbranding of food products consisting of                                                            
     or containing finfish."                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
This  was the first  hearing  for this  bill in  the Senate  Finance                                                            
Committee.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Wilken   noted  that  this   bill  would  require   retail                                                            
restaurants  to specify  on their  menus whether  the finfish  being                                                            
offered for  consumption were  farmed or wild  fish. He pointed  out                                                            
that the Senate Resources  version of the bill, Version 23-LS1213\Q,                                                            
is before the Committee for consideration.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR KIM  ELTON, the bill's sponsor,  stated that he is  carrying                                                            
the  legislation on  behalf  of the  Joint Legislative  Salmon  Task                                                            
Force,  which  unanimously  approved  it. This  bill  would  require                                                            
restaurant menus  to specify whether the fish being  served are wild                                                            
or  farmed. Currently,  grocery  store  labeling must  include  this                                                            
information.   This  bill  would  simply  extend  that   concept  to                                                            
restaurants.  Consumer awareness and  consumer choice are  important                                                            
issues, especially  given the fact that toxicity levels  being found                                                            
in fish  are being discussed  in the scientific  and popular  arena.                                                            
Many  people  prefer  to  eat fish  at  restaurants  as  opposed  to                                                            
preparing  it at  home,  as they  feel that  a restaurant  has  more                                                            
expertise than they do in this regard.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Senator Elton  stated that the Joint  Legislative Salmon  Task Force                                                            
is comprised  of processors,  Legislators,  and public members.  One                                                            
question  that arose during  the bill's  Senate Resources  Committee                                                            
hearing was in regards  to the restaurant industry's reaction to the                                                            
legislation.  Only one restaurant  has voiced the concern  that this                                                            
labeling  would incur  additional  costs;  however,  he opined  that                                                            
because most  fish is served fresh  in restaurants, the information                                                             
would be on  the daily or fresh menu  as opposed to a printed  menu.                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green asked regarding  definition  language in Section  2,                                                            
subsection (b)(1) and (2)  on page three, following line 23, in that                                                            
while the definition  of farmed fish is detailed,  the definition of                                                            
fish is limited. The language in question, reads as follows.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
          (1) "farmed fish" means fish that is propagated, farmed,                                                              
     or cultivated  in a facility  that grows, farms, or  cultivates                                                            
     the  fish in captivity  or under positive  control but  that is                                                            
     not a salmon hatchery  that is owned by the state or that holds                                                            
     a  salmon   hatchery  permit   under  AS  16.10.400;   in  this                                                            
     paragraph,  "positive  control"  has the  meaning  given in  AS                                                            
     16.40.199;                                                                                                                 
          (2) "fish" means finfish;                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Senator Elton understood  that finfish is defined elsewhere in State                                                            
Statute.  Continuing,   he  communicated  that  one   definition  of                                                            
"finfish" are those fish that are not shellfish.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green asked for further clarification.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Senator Elton  noted that,  "for the purposes  of this legislation,                                                             
fish is finfish and not shellfish."                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green  asked whether the  fish being referenced  in Section                                                            
2, subsection  (b)(2), on page three, line 30 is defined  in current                                                            
State Statute or is specific to language in this legislation.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Senator  Elton responded  that  the definition  of  fish is  defined                                                            
elsewhere in State Statute.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
ELISE  HSIEH, Assistant  Attorney  General,  Environmental  Section,                                                            
Civil  Division  (Anchorage),   Department  of  Law,  testified  via                                                            
teleconference from an  offnet site and explained that "finfish," is                                                            
a commonly  used term, which is included  in the Department  of Fish                                                            
and Game Chapter  Title 16. She stated that finfish,  shellfish, and                                                            
fish  by-products  are  included in  "the  broader  term,  seafood."                                                            
Therefore, she  supported Senator Elton's position  "that finfish is                                                            
different than shellfish."                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green  questioned  the  need  to  include  the  Section  2                                                            
definition  language in the legislation,  as the intent of  the bill                                                            
is to address  the difference between  wild fish or farmed  fish and                                                            
not to define "fish" as opposed to shellfish.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Senator Elton expressed  that the inclusion of the "fish" definition                                                            
is the result  of being "overly cautious" in its attempt  to clarify                                                            
what finfish is in regards to the intent of this bill.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Wilken  understood that the  intent of the fish  definition                                                            
would be to distinguish  that the bill would not affect  things such                                                            
as oysters.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Senator  Elton concurred,  and noted  that "a  more common"  example                                                            
would be  shrimp, as  the majority  of the shrimp  that is  imported                                                            
into the United States is farmed.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Wilken  asked  regarding   the  reason  that  schools  and                                                            
correctional   facilities   are   excluded   from   the   disclosure                                                            
requirement  denoted in  Section 2,  subsection (4)  (B) and  (C) on                                                            
page four, lines nine and eleven respectfully.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Senator Elton  responded that the  intent of this legislation  is to                                                            
focus on  businesses serving  the open public  rather than  on those                                                            
that do  not. While  he would  not be  opposed to  the inclusion  of                                                            
those  entities exempted  in  Section 2,  subsection  (4), it  might                                                            
prove awkward  were, for instance,  British Petroleum (BP)  required                                                            
to provide signage in its North Slope employee cafeteria.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Wilken acknowledged the explanation.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Wilken ordered the bill HELD in Committee.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 486(FIN)                                                                                             
     "An  Act   relating  to  reclamation   bonding  and   financial                                                            
     assurance  for certain mines;  relating to financial  assurance                                                            
     limits for lode mines;  establishing the mine reclamation trust                                                            
     fund; and providing for an effective date."                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
This  was the first  hearing  for this  bill in  the Senate  Finance                                                            
Committee.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Wilken  stated that the Senate  Rules Committee  by Request                                                            
of the Governor  sponsors this bill,  Version 23-GH2106\D.  It would                                                            
remove the $750 per acre  limitation currently in place on hard rock                                                            
or "lode  mines" and would  instead require  "companies to  bond for                                                            
reasonable   and  probable  cost   of  reclamation."  The   bill  is                                                            
accompanied  by a zero fiscal  note from  the Department of  Natural                                                            
Resources."                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
NANCY  WELCH,   Special   Assistant  to   Commissioner  Tom   Irwin,                                                            
Department  of Natural Resources,  informed  the Committee  that the                                                            
Alaska  Miners  Association  and the  Council  of  Alaska  Producers                                                            
support this  bill. She was unaware  of any opposition to  the bill.                                                            
                                                                                                                                
BOB  LOEFFLER,  Director,  Division   of  Mining,  Land  and  Water,                                                            
Department of  Natural Resources, testified via teleconference  from                                                            
an offnet site  to comment that the State's current  reclamation law                                                            
was established  at a time when only placer mines  were operating in                                                            
the State.  This legislation would  take into consideration  bonding                                                            
requirements  that better align with  the State's current  situation                                                            
that includes large mines  such as the Fort Knox, Pogo, Red Dog, and                                                            
True North  mines. The changes include  the elimination of  the bond                                                            
reclamation amount that  could be charged as it was more appropriate                                                            
to  placer mines  and  not to  large mines;  providing  companies  a                                                            
variety  of  options  through  which  to  adhere  to  State  bonding                                                            
requirements, and providing  the opportunity for mines to contribute                                                            
to a voluntary  mine reclamation  trust fund  which the State  would                                                            
manage until  the funds were required.  He voiced pleasure  that the                                                            
bill has  garnered  support from  the industry  and reiterated  that                                                            
there is no known opposition to the bill.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Senator  Hoffman asked  whether  the bill  would be  limited to  new                                                            
mines or would be retroactive.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Loeffler clarified  that the reclamation bonding  language would                                                            
remain unchanged  in regards to placer mines. Were  this legislation                                                            
adopted, the  entirety of the large  mines have agreed to  waive the                                                            
required $750 per acre  limitation and replace that requirement with                                                            
one of a variety of reclamation bonding options.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Senator  B. Stevens  moved to report  the bill  from Committee  with                                                            
individual recommendations and accompanying fiscal notes.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
There  being  no  objection,  CS HB  486  (FIN)  was  REPORTED  from                                                            
Committee with zero fiscal  note #1, dated January 21, 2004 from the                                                            
Department  of Natural  Resources  and a  new $21,000  fiscal  note,                                                            
dated April 26, 2004 from the Department of Revenue.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     CS FOR SENATE BILL NO. 284(STA)                                                                                            
     "An Act  relating to an optional  election to prevent  the name                                                            
     and address  of a permanent fund dividend applicant  from being                                                            
     disclosed,  except  to a local,  state,  or federal  government                                                            
     agency, or in compliance with a court order."                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
This  was the first  hearing  for this  bill in  the Senate  Finance                                                            
Committee.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Wilken  stated  that  this  legislation  would  allow  the                                                            
Permanent  Fund Dividend Division  in the  Department of Revenue  to                                                            
keep applicant  information private,  except in those situations  in                                                            
which the disclosure  of the information  is required by  federal or                                                            
State government.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green moved  to adopt  the Version  23-LS1596\I  committee                                                            
substitute as the working document.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Wilken,  hearing no objection,  announced that the  Version                                                            
"I" committee substitute would be the working document.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  GRETCHEN  GUESS,  the  bill's  sponsor,  stated  that  this                                                            
legislation  would mandate  that, with the  exception of a  person's                                                            
name,  all Permanent  Fund Dividend  (PFD)  application information                                                             
would be confidential.  In addition to providing a degree of privacy                                                            
to  individuals,  keeping  things  such as  a  person's residential                                                             
address confidential  is especially  important for those  threatened                                                            
by domestic  violence. This  would include  keeping Post Office  Box                                                            
addresses  private, as  someone could  locate a  person were  that a                                                            
known element.  Federal  and State  access to some  of the  dividend                                                            
application information  would apply in such cases  as child support                                                            
and jury duty communications.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Senator  Guess  noted that  currently,  a  person could  access  the                                                            
Permanent Fund  Dividend registry  via the Internet and download  it                                                            
in  its  entirety.  The  adoption  of  the  Version   "I"  committee                                                            
substitute would  reduce the original $15,000 Department  of Revenue                                                            
fiscal note #1, dated February 24, 2004.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
SHARON   BARTON,  Director,   Permanent  Fund   Dividend   Division,                                                            
Department  of  Revenue,  confirmed  that  the  Department's  fiscal                                                            
expense associated  with the Version "I" committee  substitute would                                                            
be reduced to zero, as  no cost would be incurred by only publishing                                                            
individuals' names on the registry.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Wilken   asked  for  further  information   regarding  the                                                            
Department's $15,000 fiscal note #1, dated February 24, 2004.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Barton  responded that limiting  the Permanent Fund registry  to                                                            
only applicants'  names, as specified  in the Version "I"  committee                                                            
substitute,  would incur no expense  to the Department, as  it would                                                            
be accomplished by a small  programming change. The previous version                                                            
of the bill  would have allowed people  to choose whether  or not to                                                            
include  their  name and  address  on the  Permanent  Fund  Dividend                                                            
registry. That ability  to choose, she informed, would have resulted                                                            
in an expense to the Department.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Wilken  understood therefore,  that a new zero fiscal  note                                                            
from the Department of Revenue would be forthcoming.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Barton concurred.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green  informed the Committee  that she had been  contacted                                                            
by a constituent  who told  her that, as a  result of being  on some                                                            
State registry,  her name had been  accessed by a mailing  list and,                                                            
as  a result,  she  had  received  a  volume  of  unsolicited  mail.                                                            
Therefore,  Co-Chair  Green  suggested   that  this  legislation  be                                                            
expanded  to  provide  privacy  coverage  to a  multitude  of  State                                                            
registries.  She  noted that  currently,  each  agency  has its  own                                                            
Statutes in this regard.  The issue regarding privacy of information                                                            
should  be further  expanded to  encompass all  State agencies.  She                                                            
stated that she would conduct further research in this regard.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Wilken noted  that amending  this legislation  to  address                                                            
those  concerns could  be an option.  Therefore,  he asked  Co-Chair                                                            
Green to further her efforts.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green concurred that the privacy issue is important.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Wilken commented  that were the  PFD database information                                                             
curtailed,   the  next  commonly   used  database  would   be  voter                                                            
registration lists.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green  responded that she would further efforts  to address                                                            
these concerns.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Wilken  commented  that  public   officials  access  voter                                                            
registration lists to obtain constituency contacts.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Senator  Guess  voiced  willingness  to  amend  the  legislation  to                                                            
include  other  areas  of  concern.  She  understood  that  the  PFD                                                            
database is  the most commonly used  database as it is the  largest,                                                            
most accurate address registry available.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Wilken ordered  the  bill HELD  in Committee  in order  to                                                            
address additional privacy concerns.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
ADJOURNMENT                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Gary Wilken adjourned the meeting at 03:37 PM                                                                          

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