Legislature(2005 - 2006)SENATE FINANCE 532

05/08/2005 01:00 PM FINANCE


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* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
-- Call of the Chair --
HB 26 SHORT-TERM COM FISHING CREWMEMBER LICENSE
Moved CSHB 26(FIN) Out of Committee
+ HB 94 ELECTIONS/VOTERS/POLTICAL PARTIES TELECONFERENCED
Moved SCS CSHB 94(STA) Out of Committee
+ Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled TELECONFERENCED
+= HB 53 CHILDREN IN NEED OF AID/ADOPTION/GUARDIAN TELECONFERENCED
Moved SCS CSSSHB 53(FIN) Out of Committee
+= HB 98 NONUNION PUBLIC EMPLOYEE SALARY & BENEFIT TELECONFERENCED
Moved SCS CSHB 98(FIN) Out of Committee
+= HB 279 OUTDOOR ADVERTISING; ENCROACHMENTS TELECONFERENCED
Moved SCS CSHB 279(FIN) Out of Committee
+= HB 130 UNIVERSITY LAND GRANT/STATE FOREST TELECONFERENCED
Moved SCS CSHB 130(FIN) Out of Committee
                              MINUTES                                                                                         
                     SENATE FINANCE COMMITTEE                                                                                 
                            May 8, 2005                                                                                       
                             1:03 p.m.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                              
CALL TO ORDER                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green convened the meeting at approximately 1:03:22 PM.                                                              
                                                                                                                                
PRESENT                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Senator Lyda Green, Co-Chair                                                                                                    
Co-Chair Gary Wilken, Co-Chair                                                                                                  
Senator Fred Dyson                                                                                                              
Senator Lyman Hoffman                                                                                                           
Senator Bert Stedman                                                                                                            
Senator Donny Olson                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Also  Attending:  SENATOR  CHARLIE  HUGGINS;  ADAM  BERG,  Staff  to                                                          
Representative  Carl  Moses; LAURA  GLAISER, Director,  Division  of                                                            
Elections,  Office of the  Lieutenant Governor;  JOE SONNEMAN;  MYRL                                                            
THOMPSON;  REVINA MOSS, Staff  to Representative  John Coghill;  BEN                                                            
MULLIGAN,  Staff to  Representative  Bill Stoltze;  JOHN  MACKINNON,                                                            
Deputy   Commissioner,   Highways   and  Aviation,   Department   of                                                            
Transportation  and Public Facilities;  PETE KELLY, State  Relations                                                            
Director,  University  of  Alaska;  JANET BURLESON-BAXTER,   Special                                                            
Assistant to the Commissioner, Department of Natural Resources                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Attending  via  Teleconference:  From Offnet  Sites:  BOB  LOEFFLER,                                                          
Director, Division of Mining,  Land and Water, Department of Natural                                                            
Resources;  JOE  BEEDLE,  Vice  President,  Finance,  University  of                                                            
Alaska; MARY MONTGOMERY, University of Alaska                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
SUMMARY INFORMATION                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
HB 26-SHORT-TERM COM FISHING CREWMEMBER LICENSE                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
The Committee  heard from the bill's  sponsor and reported  the bill                                                            
from Committee.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
HB 94-ELECTIONS/VOTERS/POLTICAL PARTIES                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
The Committee  heard from the Division of Elections  and took public                                                            
testimony.  One amendment was considered  but failed to be  adopted,                                                            
and the bill reported from Committee.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
HB 53-CHILDREN IN NEED OF AID/ADOPTION/GUARDIAN                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
The Committee  heard from the sponsor,  adopted five amendments  and                                                            
reported the bill from Committee.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
HB 279-OUTDOOR ADVERTISING; ENCROACHMENTS                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
The Committee  heard from the bill's  sponsor and the Department  of                                                            
Transportation and Public  Facilities. One amendment was adopted and                                                            
the bill reported from Committee.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
HB 130-UNIVERSITY LAND GRANT/STATE FOREST                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
The Committee  adopted  a committee  substitute and  heard from  the                                                            
University of Alaska and  the Department of Natural Resources. Three                                                            
amendments  failed  to  be  adopted   and  the  bill  reported  from                                                            
Committee.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
HB 98-NONUNION PUBLIC EMPLOYEE SALARY & BENEFIT                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
The Committee adopted a  committee substitute and one amendment. The                                                            
bill reported from Committee.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
[NOTE: This record  of this meeting between 1:03 PM  and 1:45 PM was                                                            
inadvertently recorded  under the May 8, 2005 recording titled J141.                                                            
The remainder of the meeting  is correctly recorded under the May 8,                                                            
2005 SFIN heading.]                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 26(FIN)                                                                                              
     "An Act relating to short-term commercial fishing crewmember                                                               
     licenses; and providing for an effective date."                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
This  was the first  hearing  for this  bill in  the Senate  Finance                                                            
Committee.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
ADAM BERG, Staff  to Representative Carl Moses, the  bill's sponsor,                                                            
explained  that, were  this bill  enacted, a  person, regardless  of                                                            
residency  status, could  purchase "a seven-day  commercial  fishing                                                            
crew member  license" for $30. The  only option currently  available                                                            
is an  annual  license for  a fee  of $60  for a  resident and  $180                                                            
dollars for a non-resident.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
1:04:13 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Mr.  Berg  noted  this  legislation  would  also  allow   commercial                                                            
fishermen  to  generate  money  from  the  tourist  industry.  While                                                            
commercial  fishermen are currently  able to take tourists  on their                                                            
vessels,  the tourists  are  prohibited  from participating  in  the                                                            
"hands on" commercial  fishing experience. They cannot  touch a fish                                                            
or any of the gear without a crewmember license.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Berg stated that this  legislation would also provide commercial                                                            
fishermen the  ability to hire short-term  temporary help  at a more                                                            
affordable price  in times when permanent crew members  were sick or                                                            
when  manpower  availability  lessened  near the  end  of a  fishing                                                            
season.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green  asked for information about the vessel  liability in                                                            
these cases.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
1:05:06 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Berg responded  that while commercial  vessels are not  required                                                            
to carry liability  insurance, it  would be "strongly recommended",                                                             
as, otherwise,  the  vessel and  the operation  could  be placed  in                                                            
jeopardy.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green  asked for examples  of what might be at risk  in the                                                            
case of such litigation.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Berg  expressed that  everything a fisherman  owned would  be at                                                            
risk  of  being  lost  were one  to  elect  not  to  have  liability                                                            
coverage.  However, most  commercial fishermen  carry liability  and                                                            
the expectation  would be that those  who not astute in that  regard                                                            
would not participate in this endeavor.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green  asked  whether a  commercial  fishermen  who  hires                                                            
tourists  or other short  term seasonal workers  might experience  a                                                            
monetary  increase in their  liability coverage  rates, and  whether                                                            
the reporting  requirements for this type of operation  might differ                                                            
from the norm.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Berg stated that any  commercial fisherman who charged money for                                                            
taking people  out on his or her boat would be considered  a "vessel                                                            
for hire" under  federal law by the  United States Coast  Guard. The                                                            
vessel  for hire  status would  require  the operator  to have  such                                                            
things  as a  Six-Pack  License, first  aid  and CPR  training,  and                                                            
random drug testing for the crew.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green ascertained  therefore that  "the standard  would be                                                            
higher".                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Berg affirmed.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green understood  that  a  commercial fisherman  would  be                                                            
aware of those requirements.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Senator  Olson  asked  whether   a provision   of  this  nature  had                                                            
previously existed in the commercial fishing industry.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Berg  clarified that  tourists could  currently purchase  a crew                                                            
license; however,  it is a more expensive  longer-term license.  The                                                            
short-term, less expensive license could expand the market.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Wilken  moved  to  report the  bill  from  Committee  with                                                            
individual recommendations and accompanying fiscal notes.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
There being no objection,  CS HB 26(FIN) was REPORTED from Committee                                                            
with  $1,700  fiscal  note  #1 dated  February  11,  2005  from  the                                                            
Department of  Fish and Game and indeterminate fiscal  note #2 dated                                                            
February  15,  2005  from the  Department  of  Labor  and  Workforce                                                            
Development.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
1:08:03 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
AT EASE 1:09:06 PM / 1:13:56 PM                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     SENATE CS FOR CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 94(STA)                                                                                
     "An Act relating to  qualifications of voters, requirements and                                                            
     procedures  regarding independent candidates  for President and                                                            
     Vice-President of  the United States, voter registration, voter                                                            
     residence, precinct  boundary and polling place designation and                                                            
     modification,  political  parties, voters  unaffiliated  with a                                                            
     political party, early  voting, absentee voting, ballot design,                                                            
     ballot  counting, voting by mail,  voting machines,  vote tally                                                            
     systems,   qualifications  for   elected  office,  initiative,                                                             
     referendum,  recall,  and definitions  in  the Alaska  Election                                                            
     Code; and relating to incorporation elections."                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
This  was the first  hearing  for this  bill in  the Senate  Finance                                                            
Committee.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
LAURA  GLAISER,  Director,  Division  of Elections,  Office  of  the                                                            
Lieutenant  Governor,  characterized  this legislation  as being  "a                                                            
major piece of election  reform". It is an updated version of a bill                                                            
that  was  introduced  but  not  adopted  the previous  Legislative                                                             
Session.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Ms.  Glaiser  stated that  this  bill  would  clean up  and  enhance                                                            
current  election  provisions,   including  minor  changes  such  as                                                            
changing  the term  "work site"  to "construction  site";  proposing                                                            
that the voter record rather  than the voter card be the presumptive                                                            
evidence of  a voter's residence;  including the definition  of non-                                                            
partisan  and undeclared  voters; "protecting  voter information  of                                                            
domestic  violence victims  in accordance  with confidentially  laws                                                            
approved last year; defining  the process for independent candidates                                                            
for  Vice  President  and  President;  sharing  consistency  in  the                                                            
definition of  an overseas voter; making clear age  requirements for                                                            
serving  once selected;  and clarifies  recognized  political  party                                                            
status and how  the Division notifies a party". Changes  to Title 29                                                            
would  include   "clearly"  defining   a  qualified  voter   as  one                                                            
registered  to vote  within a proposed  borough  or municipality  at                                                            
least  30 days  prior to  an  election as  a hardship  is  currently                                                            
incurred by the requirement  that a person must live in an area. The                                                            
bill would  "define re-registration  and repeal duplicate  language"                                                            
regarding regional supervisors and absentee voting stations.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Ms.  Glaiser spoke  to  the "major  changes"  proposed  in the  bill                                                            
regarding such things as  allowing a voter through power of attorney                                                            
to register to  vote, and make changes to their registration.  Other                                                            
changes  would  include reducing  the  witnessing  requirements  for                                                            
absentee by  mail or electronic transmission  from two witnesses  to                                                            
one. The  Division desired  that witness be  a United States  (U.S.)                                                            
citizen, however that requirement  was eliminated in the House State                                                            
Affairs Committee.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green  asked for further information regarding  the witness                                                            
requirements.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Glaiser responded  that current law requires two  U.S. witnesses                                                            
for a faxed  voted ballot  and two witnesses  for a by-mail  ballot.                                                            
The Division  recommended  changing both those  voting scenarios  to                                                            
one witness who must be  a U.S. citizen; House action eliminated the                                                            
U.S. citizenship  requirement, but incorporated language  that would                                                            
subject a person  making false statements on the absentee  ballot to                                                            
the act of perjury.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green  understood that, were they to submit  an "ineligible                                                            
witness",  the  person  submitting  the  absentee  ballot  would  be                                                            
subject to that punishment.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
1:16:57 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Glaiser affirmed.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Glaiser  continued that the bill  would incorporate scanning  as                                                            
another mode of transmitting  voter registration or by mail absentee                                                            
ballot  requests to  the Division.  Current  acceptable transmittal                                                             
means include delivery in person, by mail, or by fax.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Glaiser informed the  Committee that, while current law requires                                                            
the Director  of the  Division of  Elections to  determine a  random                                                            
order for  all candidates,  the House added  language requiring  the                                                            
Division  to implement  a ballot  rotation  for the  names of  those                                                            
candidates running for  governor, lieutenant governor, U.S. senator,                                                            
U.S.  representative,  and State  senator  for each  district.  "The                                                            
names of the candidates  for State House races will appear in random                                                            
order as determined by the Director as is the current practice."                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Glaiser  pointed out  that the Division  advanced language  that                                                            
"would improve ballot security  by adding that the ballots would not                                                            
be mailed  to a voter  whose address  has been  identified as  being                                                            
undeliverable".  In  addition,   election  boards  must  notify  the                                                            
Division  of the  number  of ballots  that  have been  destroyed  to                                                            
increase  accountability.  Voting  machine  and vote  tally  machine                                                            
standards provisions were also included in the bill.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Ms.  Glaiser  stated that  a  large portion  of  the bill  would  be                                                            
dedicated  to  improving   the  process  pertaining   to  petitions,                                                            
referendums  and recalls. The changes  would make the process  "more                                                            
user  friendly"   for  citizens  and  would  make   the  process  of                                                            
"petitioning  the government more  consistent". One change  would be                                                            
the inclusion  of a  "printed name  and numerical  identifier  for a                                                            
petition  signer". The numerical  identifier  language added  by the                                                            
House  Judiciary Committee  would  include  such things  as date  of                                                            
birth,  last four  digits of one's  social security  number,  Alaska                                                            
driver's license  number, or State  or voter identification  number.                                                            
This information "would  improve the Division's ability to qualify a                                                            
voter's signature".                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
1:18:22 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Glaiser stated  that the proposed changes in the  qualifications                                                            
pertaining to a circulator  or petitioner would align the State with                                                            
the Buckley  ruling in that, while  the circulator must be  18 years                                                            
of age, an Alaskan  resident, and a U.S. citizen,  they would not be                                                            
required to be a registered voter.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Ms.  Glaiser  noted  that  "language  that  was the  basis  for  the                                                            
Division  requiring   accountability   reports  from  the   petition                                                            
sponsors  has  been removed",  as  a Court  ruling  considered  that                                                            
requirement  to  be "an  undue burden  and  a barrier  for  petition                                                            
carriers".                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Ms.  Glaiser   also  pointed   out  that   language  requiring   the                                                            
circulator's  name to be prominently  displayed on the petition  was                                                            
eliminated.  While  the Division  had  chosen  not to  enforce  that                                                            
provision following  the year 2000 Buckley ruling,  the Statutes had                                                            
not been changed.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Ms.  Glaiser  continued  that  language   regarding  the  number  of                                                            
signatures  required  on a  recall  petition  was clarified  by  the                                                            
removal  of language pertaining  to 100  signatures. Going  forward,                                                            
ten percent  of the voters in the  preceding general election  would                                                            
be required to sign a recall petition.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Glaiser  stated that  one of the changes  advanced by the  House                                                            
Judiciary Committee  was to reduce the percent of  votes required by                                                            
party  candidates  for  the  party   to continue   as  a  recognized                                                            
political party. "The amounts  for recounts were raised" as depicted                                                            
in  the  sectional  analyses  contained  in  Members'  packets.  The                                                            
amounts had not been reset since 1986.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
1:19:52 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Ms.  Glaiser  specified  that the  legislation  would  also  require                                                            
petitions,  referendums  or  recalls  to  specify  in  the  petition                                                            
booklet  "the  minimum  cost   to  the  State  for  the  review  and                                                            
certification  of those  petitions".  In addition,  the cost to  the                                                            
State, were the act approved by the voters must be provided.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Glaiser stated  that language was added on the  House Floor that                                                            
"no one supplying  an absentee ballot  application may pre-mark  the                                                            
primary ballot choice for  a voter before mailing it out".  Language                                                            
was also added that specified  that "only a voter or a person with a                                                            
power  of  attorney   could  mark  party  affiliation   on  a  voter                                                            
registration  or  absentee ballot  application  unless  the mark  is                                                            
consistent with the voter's current registration record".                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Glaiser  noted that the Senate  State Affairs Committee  changed                                                            
the word  "oath" in Section  6(a) (11) back  to "attestation"  as is                                                            
reflected  in current law.  That word would  be consistent  with the                                                            
national  voter registration  act. The  use of the  word "oath"  was                                                            
incorrect.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Glaiser  informed  the Committee  that, while  the Senate  State                                                            
Affairs  Committee added  Sections  11, 12,  and 13,  she could  not                                                            
speak to those  sections was they pertained to law  that she did not                                                            
administer.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Glaiser  stated that  Section 19 changed  the date by which  the                                                            
Director  must  identify  locations  for  early  voting  sites.  The                                                            
proposed  date of  June first  would  replace the  existing  January                                                            
first date.  This was a Division request  as moving the date  closer                                                            
to the election  date would provide more time to determine  the most                                                            
appropriate  sites  for that  activity. The  June  first date  would                                                            
continue  to provide  the Division  the time  required for  ordering                                                            
ballots, supplies, and the hiring of election workers.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
1:21:14 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Glaiser  noted that the Senate  State Affairs Committee  removed                                                            
language  adopted on  the House  Floor  that would  have provided  a                                                            
ballot with the  greatest range of candidates from  the most parties                                                            
to  an unaffiliated  voter  who  failed  to mark  a  primary  ballot                                                            
choice.  This language  was removed,  as  no such  ballot exists  in                                                            
Alaska  because  it  has  "closed  primaries   in  which  there  are                                                            
individual  ballots for  individual  parties".  Therefore the  House                                                            
language  was  inconsistent  with  existing State  law.  The  Senate                                                            
Judiciary  Committee   also  removed  language  that   would  change                                                            
existing qualifiers for recognized political parties.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green  described this as  being "a huge bill". Continuing,                                                             
she  asked  whether any  language  in  the bill  would  provide  the                                                            
Division the  ability to "clean up"  the State's voter registration                                                             
lists.                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
1:22:39 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Glaiser  responded that  the bill would  not address purging  of                                                            
the  voter registration  list.  The  federal Department  of  Justice                                                            
(DoJ) and the  National Voter Registration Act "heavily  monitor the                                                            
portion  of the  law  regarding  that endeavor".  The  Division  has                                                            
conducted  internal discussions  in this regard;  however,  it would                                                            
require  tremendous   effort  and   coordination  with  DoJ.   As  a                                                            
consequence  of existing State law,  the Division has been  notified                                                            
by DoJ that  the State is one of a  few with more registered  voters                                                            
than people over  the age of 18. The Division has  responded to DoJ,                                                            
and as result, an effort in this regard might be forthcoming.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
1:23:34 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green  asked whether State  or federal law would  allow for                                                            
the requirement  that a person "at the time of voting"  update their                                                            
address information. This  would seem to be the most feasible manner                                                            
through which  to update  records. The fact  that a high percent  of                                                            
the Division's  mailings  are returned  is a  point of frustration.                                                             
Many addresses  are old and past the time allotted  by the U.S. Post                                                            
Office for  forwarding. Efforts  such as  developing an unobtrusive                                                             
method to update records at the voting poll should be furthered.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Ms.  Glaiser  responded  that  requesting  people  to  update  their                                                            
address at  the time of voting would  not be obtrusive. The  process                                                            
of Questioned Ballots currently  allows that. While State or federal                                                            
law would  not prohibit  asking for address  verification,  it would                                                            
slow down the polling process.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green   asked  whether  permission  to  ask   for  address                                                            
verification would be required in State Statute.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Glaiser stated that this would be researched.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green expressed  that a determination would be appreciated,                                                            
as this is an important issue.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
1:26:27 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Wilken asked whether  the inclusion  of a FY 2007  capital                                                            
budget  request for  a dedicated  staff  position to  work with  the                                                            
federal DoJ in regards  to the State's Voter Registration list might                                                            
be appropriate.  To  that point,  he asked  whether  such an  effort                                                            
could be accomplished in one year.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
1:26:57 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Ms.  Glaiser responded  that  this effort  would  involve more  than                                                            
"just a body", as the person  must be able to speak on behalf of the                                                            
Division.  In  addition,  she  was unsure  whether  a  temporary  or                                                            
contract  employee  could  conduct  negotiations  on behalf  of  the                                                            
State.  This suggestion  could  be  further  reviewed  and could  be                                                            
funded through the Help America Vote Act.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Wilken  stated that this issue is worthy  of discussion, as                                                            
the voter registration process should be improved.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green remarked  that the voter registration list issue must                                                            
be  frustrating  for  the  Division.  She  estimated  that  half  of                                                            
Division's mailings are returned.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Glaiser nodded in affirmation.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
1:28:26 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Senator Dyson  asked for further information about  how the Division                                                            
could change the  voter registration list so that  potential victims                                                            
could be protected from perpetrators.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
1:28:48 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Glaiser  explained that  SB 284, which  became law the  previous                                                            
Session,  would  allow any  voter  who had  a separate  mailing  and                                                            
residence  address to  keep their  residence  address protected.  In                                                            
addition,  law now  specified that  the Division  could not  release                                                            
information such as a social security number or date of birth.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Senator Olson inquired  as to how people in Rural areas of the State                                                            
that do not have such things  as post office box mail delivery would                                                            
be able  to receive absentee  ballots or  other mailings. He  voiced                                                            
concern  that voter  apathy might  occur were  those individuals  to                                                            
think their ballots would be questioned.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Glaiser  understood  the question  to be how  to ensure  by-mail                                                            
voters  or absentee  voters that their  votes would  be counted.  In                                                            
other words, the  question is whether this bill might  provide those                                                            
people  further consideration.  She  voiced the  understanding  that                                                            
there  is nothing  currently  in the bill  that  would address  this                                                            
concern. The action  of a voter "to keep their registration  current                                                            
is the most important thing".                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Glaiser expressed that  Alaska is "a great State" because people                                                            
call the regional  Election office  if they do not receive  a ballot                                                            
or something expected does  not arrive. The only section that speaks                                                            
primarily   to   Rural  communities   is   the   section   regarding                                                            
undeliverable   addresses  in  REAA/CRSA  election  districts.   The                                                            
Division would  no longer send a ballot to an address  that is known                                                            
to be undeliverable. "That is an election integrity question."                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
1:31:40 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green ascertained  therefore, that,  at some point,  it is                                                            
incumbent upon the voter to be aware.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Glaiser  stated that the undeliverable  address ballot  issue is                                                            
addressed in  Sec. 25 of the bill.  She qualified that the  decision                                                            
to not send  a ballot to an undeliverable  address would  only apply                                                            
to  the REAA/CRSA  elections,  which  are exclusively  conducted  by                                                            
mail. It would not apply  to absentee voting by mail ballots as that                                                            
process  is one  in which  the  voter first  sends  the Division  an                                                            
application  containing  a mailing address  to which  the ballot  is                                                            
then sent. That procedure would maintain the process integrity.                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
1:32:21 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
JOE  SONNEMAN  informed  the  Committee  that  he  holds  a  PhD  in                                                            
Government  and has a Law Degree.  This education has attributed  to                                                            
his interest in  election procedures. He mentioned  that at one time                                                            
he had  filed a lawsuit  to assist  in restoring  the State's  long-                                                            
standing   practice   of  rotating   candidate   names.  He   voiced                                                            
appreciation  for the fact  that the House  State Affairs  Committee                                                            
incorporated  rotation  provisions into  the bill  at zero cost.  To                                                            
that point,  he asked that the Committee  support that language  and                                                            
the other provisions supported by the House in the bill.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Sonneman  continued  that he  had also  served as  chair of  the                                                            
Alaskans  for Fair Elections  group  that was involved  in the  2004                                                            
State recount  effort. Thus he has  reviewed the provisions  in this                                                            
bill that address  the recount issue.  Again, he voiced support  for                                                            
the  work conducted  by  the House  committees  in that  regard.  He                                                            
"commended  the  House version  of  the bill  to the  Committee  for                                                            
consideration.  The differences between the bill that  reported from                                                            
the House  and the Senate  committee substitute  is that the  Senate                                                            
version basically re-instills  "soft money. It would allow unlimited                                                            
spending   for  political   party   building  with   no  record   of                                                            
contribution  or  expenditure".  While  people  who  support  strong                                                            
political  parties might  favor that  endeavor, he  opined that  the                                                            
"wider Alaskan  view" might  differ. He noted  that an amendment  to                                                            
delete  that language  could  be  forthcoming,  that and  he  "would                                                            
commend that amendment".                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Sonneman  addressed language in  Sec. 57, which was included  in                                                            
the  House version  of  the bill,  but not  included  in the  Senate                                                            
committee substitute.  Sec. 57 would redefine political  parties and                                                            
lower the qualifier  requirement from three percent  to two percent.                                                            
Currently,  the Alaska Independence  Party,  which more than  likely                                                            
draws votes from the Republican  Party, would qualify as a political                                                            
party under either the  two or three percent requirement. The change                                                            
to two percent  would allow the Green  Party to continue  to qualify                                                            
as  a  political  party.  That  would   affect  the  votes  for  the                                                            
Democratic  Party  "almost  to  the same  degree  that"  the  Alaska                                                            
Independence  Party would  affect the Republican  Party.  Therefore,                                                            
one could say  that the House version of the bill  "is more balanced                                                            
on its affect on the major  parties and preserves smaller parties in                                                            
Alaska".                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Sonneman shared  that he has closely followed  this bill through                                                            
its House processings.  The House  committees did good work,  and he                                                            
commended the  House Version to the Committee. Were  the Senate bill                                                            
to be favored, he urged that Sec. 57 be re-incorporated into it.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
MYRL THOMPSON,  who defined  himself as a  Susitna Valley  resident,                                                            
past  Legislative  candidate,   and initiative   and  recall  effort                                                            
participant,  voiced  that  he has  followed  the movement  of  this                                                            
legislation  through  its  House and  Senate  hearing  process.  The                                                            
Senate State Affairs committee  substitute, which added Sections 11,                                                            
12, and 13, "poisoned" a very good House bill.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
1:37:19 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Thompson  applauded  the efforts  conducted by  the Division  of                                                            
Elections  and  the  House.  However,  the  Senate's   inclusion  of                                                            
Sections  11, 12,  and 13  would push  "backwards"  campaign  reform                                                            
efforts  intended to reduce  "soft money"  from out-of-State  "5270"                                                            
special interest groups  influencing Alaskan politics. Therefore, he                                                            
asked that Sections  11, 12, and 13 be omitted from  the bill. "Soft                                                            
money"  would  also place  small  political  groups at  "a  distinct                                                            
disadvantage".  He defined "soft money"  as money that "there  is no                                                            
trail on".                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Thompson  noted that 51-percent  of voters in the State  have no                                                            
party affiliation.  The Senate State Affair's action  of eliminating                                                            
the changes  the House  proposed in  Sec. 57 would  result in  there                                                            
being fewer  qualified small  political parties  in the State.  This                                                            
would serve to  increase the number of non-party affiliated  voters.                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Thompson  stated  that the  people  of the State  have  strongly                                                            
supported campaign  reform efforts opposing soft money.  The removal                                                            
of language  in Sec. 57  that would decrease  the percent of  voters                                                            
required in support  of a political party from three  percent to two                                                            
percent of  registered voters and  the addition of Sections  11, 12,                                                            
and  13,  that   would  allow  for   increased  "soft  money",   are                                                            
contentious  issues to him. He shared  that during discussions  with                                                            
some employees  of the  Alaska Public Offices  Commission (APOC)  it                                                            
was apparent  that they "strongly  disagreed" with the inclusion  of                                                            
Sections 11, 12,  and 13 in the bill. He voiced disappointment  that                                                            
representatives  from  APOC  have  not  testified  in  this  regard.                                                            
Nonetheless, their opposition "is on record".                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green assured  that APOC was aware of today's hearing. APOC                                                            
"is set up to administer the law; they do not set policy".                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Thompson  interjected  that it was his  understanding that  APOC                                                            
had been unaware  of the Senate State  Affairs Committee  hearing on                                                            
the bill.  After that hearing,  the bill was  supposed to have  been                                                            
transmitted to the Senate Judiciary Committee.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
1:41:04 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green specified  that APOC  does not,  "set policy  nor do                                                            
they write law. They implement the law and the policy".                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Thompson acknowledged.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green  asked whether State  action could impact  the action                                                            
of a "5-27".                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Thompson  determined  that State  action would  not affect  this                                                            
federal law.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green stated  that her  question was  directed to  clarify                                                            
remarks made  by Mr. Thompson  in this regard;  State action  "would                                                            
not  change the  status"  of that  law which  would  allow for  "the                                                            
complete  formation of  a group that  has a set  purpose to  receive                                                            
unlimited"  support. The  reality is  that "we have  no impact  over                                                            
that". Furthermore,  she questioned the statistical  validity of how                                                            
many  people  are  aligned  with  a  party,  as,  according  to  her                                                            
calculations, approximately  35 to 40 percent of the people on voter                                                            
mailing  lists  "don't exist".  Were  those  lists cleaned  up,  the                                                            
numbers  might reflect  there being  a greater  number of  organized                                                            
party voters.  The numbers could "be skewed" were  the whole numbers                                                            
factored in.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Thompson commented  that by passing Sections 11, 12, and 13, the                                                            
State  would be  "setting up  a quasi  5-27. In  other words,  we're                                                            
getting money  influencing  our system that  we don't have  any idea                                                            
where its coming  from…big money doesn't come from  small people, it                                                            
comes from groups  that are certainly interested in  influencing our                                                            
politics  and with no record  of them, that's  the reason that  APOC                                                            
has some problem because that's something that they do".                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
1:43:46 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green  reiterated  that,  "they  can  have  their  problem                                                            
personally, but as a matter  of policy, they implement Statute. They                                                            
implement regulation. They  do not establish law or policy. They are                                                            
welcome to testify  personally, but not on Statute  being proposed."                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Thompson  stressed  that  Sections 11,  12, and  13 would  allow                                                            
"soft money".                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green  expressed that Alaska  is unique in regards  "to the                                                            
ability of the level" of  the party's participation with candidates.                                                            
Alaska's  qualifications  "are  very  low" when  compared  to  other                                                            
states.  "Our candidacy  and  active campaigns  does  more to  party                                                            
building  than  the  party  does"  for  the  candidate  "as  far  as                                                            
financing  our  campaigns".  The  low limit  that  the  party  could                                                            
contribute does not allow otherwise.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
The bill was HELD in Committee.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
RECESS TO CALL OF CHAIR: 1:45:02 PM / 6:56:25 PM                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     SENATE CS FOR CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 94(STA)                                                                                
     "An Act relating to  qualifications of voters, requirements and                                                            
     procedures  regarding independent candidates  for President and                                                            
     Vice-President of  the United States, voter registration, voter                                                            
     residence, precinct  boundary and polling place designation and                                                            
     modification,  political  parties, voters  unaffiliated  with a                                                            
     political party, early  voting, absentee voting, ballot design,                                                            
     ballot  counting, voting by mail,  voting machines,  vote tally                                                            
     systems,   qualifications  for   elected  office,  initiative,                                                             
     referendum,  recall,  and definitions  in  the Alaska  Election                                                            
     Code; and relating to incorporation elections."                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
The bill was again before the Committee.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green  asked whether there  were any further questions  for                                                            
the  Division  of Elections  in  regards  to  this bill.  None  were                                                            
forthcoming.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Amendment #1:  This amendment deletes  the entirety of Sections  11,                                                            
12,  and 13  from the  bill, beginning  on  page nine,  line 20  and                                                            
concluding on page 11, line 14.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
In addition,  the amendment replaces  Applicability references  "34-                                                            
57" with "31 - 54" in Sec. 65, on page 35, line two.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Senator Hoffman  offered Amendment  #1, on behalf of Senator  Olson.                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green objected.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Senator Hoffman  explained that the removal of these  sections would                                                            
address the concerns relating to "soft money".                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green restated  her earlier comments in regards to the fact                                                            
that the  State could not  influence the  federal law pertaining  to                                                            
"5-27s". These sections  would simply allow "some money to go to the                                                            
party  for  party  building".  Since this  State  has  much  tighter                                                            
restrictions than  other states in regard to the amount  of money an                                                            
individual  or an organized party  could contribute to a  candidate,                                                            
the  levels of  concern  in this  regard would  be  lower than  that                                                            
experienced in other states. "The roof is low in our State."                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Senator Dyson voiced appreciation  for the issues brought forward in                                                            
this discussion.  He noted  that a  friend of  his from Florida  had                                                            
commented  that  Alaska's  "election process  is  so unique  and  so                                                            
precious, we ought  to be very very careful about  messing with it."                                                            
Even though  extreme efforts have  been exerted in this regard,  the                                                            
opportunity  is there for  it to be "messed  with". While it  is "an                                                            
imperfect  system", the language  in question  "is at least  a small                                                            
attempt to allow  some other folks to have access  to resources". He                                                            
voiced being "comfortable with the situation at this time".                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Senator Hoffman  thought, incorrectly, that Senator  Dyson's initial                                                            
remarks about "not messing  with the system" were an indication that                                                            
he was  going to  support the  amendment, as  removing the  Sections                                                            
would "not mess with the system".                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
A roll call was taken on the motion.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
IN FAVOR: Senator Hoffman                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
OPPOSED: Senator Dyson, Co-Chair Wilken, and Co-Chair Green                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
ABSENT: Senator Stedman, Senator Bunde, and Senator Olson                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
The motion FAILED (1-3-3)                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Amendment #1 FAILED.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Wilken  moved  to  report the  bill  from  Committee  with                                                            
individual recommendations and accompanying fiscal notes.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
There  being  no  objection,  SCS  HB 94  (STA)  was  REPORTED  from                                                            
Committee  with zero FY  07 fiscal  note #3, dated  April 21,  2005,                                                            
from the Division  of Elections, Office  of he Lieutenant  Governor.                                                            
                                                                                                                                
7:01:13 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     SENATE CS FOR CS FOR SS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 53(JUD)                                                                         
     "An Act relating to  child-in-need-of-aid proceedings; amending                                                            
     the construction of  statutes pertaining to children in need of                                                            
     aid;    relating   to    guardianships;    relating   to    the                                                            
     confidentiality   of  investigations,  court  hearings,   court                                                            
     records,  and public agency records  and information  in child-                                                            
     in-need-of-aid  matters and certain  child protection  matters,                                                            
     to immunity  regarding disclosure  of information in  child-in-                                                            
     need-of-aid  matters and certain  child protection matters,  to                                                            
     proceedings regarding  voluntary relinquishment and termination                                                            
     of  a  parent  and  child  relationship,   to  eligibility  for                                                            
     permanent  fund dividends for  certain children in the  custody                                                            
     of  the state,  and  to juvenile  delinquency  proceedings  and                                                            
     placements;  reestablishing and  relating to a state  citizens'                                                            
     review  panel; amending  the obligation  of a public agency  to                                                            
     disclose  agency information  pertaining to a child  in need of                                                            
     aid;  relating  to disclosure  of  confidential  or  privileged                                                            
     information   about   children  and   families  involved   with                                                            
     children's services  within the Department of Health and Social                                                            
     Services   to  officials   for  review   or  use  in   official                                                            
     capacities;  relating to reports  of harm and to adoptions  and                                                            
     foster  care;  relating   to  consent  for  the  medication  of                                                            
     children  in state custody;  prescribing  the rights of  family                                                            
     members   related   to   child-in-    need-of-aid   cases   and                                                            
     establishing   a familial  priority   for adoption;   modifying                                                            
     adoption and placement  procedures in certain child-in-need-of-                                                            
     aid cases;  relating to the admissibility into  evidence of the                                                            
     prior recorded  statement of a crime victim less  than 16 years                                                            
     of age; amending  Rules 9 and 13, Alaska Adoption  Rules, Rules                                                            
     3,  17.2, 18,  and 22,  Alaska Child  in Need  of Aid Rules  of                                                            
     Procedure, Rules 14  and 15, Alaska Rules of Probate Procedure,                                                            
     and Rule  801, Alaska Rules of  Evidence; and providing  for an                                                            
     effective date."                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
This was  the second  hearing for  this bill in  the Senate  Finance                                                            
Committee.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green  reminded the Committee  that as several issues  were                                                            
raised during  the first hearing on this bill, some  amendments have                                                            
been  developed  through which  to  either  address concerns  or  to                                                            
clarify certain points of the legislation.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Amendment #1:  This amendment deletes  Sec. 14(t) on page  ten lines                                                            
20 through 23. The language being deleted reads as follows.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     (t) The court  may not terminate parental rights  solely on the                                                            
     basis  that the parent did not  complete treatment required  of                                                            
     the parent  by the department for reunification  with the child                                                            
     if the  treatment required  was unavailable  to the parent  and                                                            
     the department did not provide the treatment.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Wilken moved Amendment #1.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green  explained that this amendment would  delete language                                                            
prohibiting  the termination  of parental rights  due to their  non-                                                            
completion of a specified treatment plan.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
REVINA  MOSS, Staff  to Representative  John  Coghill, stated  that,                                                            
while  the Department  of  Health  and Social  Services  would  have                                                            
strived  to insure  that  parents completed  their  treatment  plan,                                                            
there was  concern that the  inclusion of  this language would  have                                                            
provided parents "a piece  of ammunition" through which to delay the                                                            
process of getting treatment.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
There being no objection, Amendment #1 was ADOPTED.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Amendment #2: This amendment  deletes the phrase ", the legislature,                                                            
or the governor"  following "the department" from  Sec. 23(b)(12) on                                                            
page seventeen,  lines six and seven. The revised  language reads as                                                            
follows.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
     (12) a review panel established by the department for the                                                                  
     purpose of reviewing the actions taken by the department in a                                                              
     specific case.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Wilken moved for the adoption of Amendment #2.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green stated that  this amendment  would delete the  words                                                            
"'department  and  legislature'  in  order to  comply  with  federal                                                            
requirements that  confidential information can only  be reviewed by                                                            
the Department and the State Review Panel".                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
[NOTE:   Co-Chair  Green   inadvertently   stated  "department   and                                                            
legislature" rather  than the correct reference to  "the legislature                                                            
and the governor.]                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Ms.  Moss  noted  that  the  federal  Child  Abuse   Prevention  and                                                            
Treatment Act  would require that  the confidentially of  records be                                                            
restricted  to  the department.  Therefore,   the inclusion  of  the                                                            
Legislature  or  the Governor  in  this regard  would  have  "placed                                                            
federal dollars at risk".                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Senator  Hoffman   asked  for  confirmation  that   the  words  "the                                                            
legislature or the governor" would be deleted by the amendment.                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green affirmed.  The amendment language  was correct;  she                                                            
had misspoken.  She also noted that in order to further  clarify the                                                            
issue, the  amendment is  accompanied by  a memorandum, dated  April                                                            
11, 2005 from  Jean Mischel, Legislative Counsel,  Division of Legal                                                            
and Research Services, and addressed to Representative Coghill.                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
There being no objection, Amendment #2 was ADOPTED.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
7:04:22 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Amendment #3:  This amendment deletes the words "foster  parent" and                                                            
inserts the  words "out-of-home care  provider" following  the words                                                            
"Grandparent or" in Sec. 51(c) on page 26, line ten.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
In addition,  the  amendment  deletes the  words  "foster parent  or                                                            
other" following "and the" in Sec.51(c) on page 26, line 11.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Wilken moved Amendment #3.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green stated that  replacing the words "foster parent" with                                                            
"out-of-home care provider"  would make the language consistent with                                                            
the Statutory change specified  in Sec. 10 page six, line 18 through                                                            
page seven line 24 regarding  the sideboards for closing hearings to                                                            
the public.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Moss furthered  that this amendment  would be required  to align                                                            
Sec.  10 language  with revisions  in the  bill  that expand  rights                                                            
previously provided  to foster parents to include  other out of home                                                            
care providers such as adult family members and family friends.                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green qualified  therefore that the proposed language would                                                            
more clearly define who would be involved.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Without objection, Amendment #3 was ADOPTED.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Amendment #4:  This amendment deletes the words "in  the proceeding"                                                            
following "further hearings" in Sec. 52(f)(5) page 27 line 28.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Wilken moved the amendment.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green stated that  the purpose of this conforming amendment                                                            
would be  to clarify that  any person banned  from one CINA  hearing                                                            
could be banned from all such hearings.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Ms.  Moss  affirmed  that the  amendment  would  make  the  language                                                            
consistent with language in Sec. 10.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
There being no objection, Amendment #4 was ADOPTED.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
7:05:55 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Amendment  #5: This  amendment deletes  all language  in Sec.  59 on                                                            
page 31 lines  four through 24. The language being  deleted reads as                                                            
follows.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
     Sec. 59. The uncodified law of the State of Alaska is amended                                                              
     by adding a new section to read:                                                                                           
          DIRECT COURT RULE AMENDMENT. Rule 801(d), Alaska Rules of                                                             
      Evidence, is amended by adding a new paragraph to read:                                                                   
                (3) Recorded Statement by Child Victims of Crime.                                                               
     The statement is a recorded statement by the victim of a crime                                                             
     who is less than 16 years of age and                                                                                       
                     (A) the recording was made before the                                                                      
     proceeding;                                                                                                                
                     (B) the victim is available for cross-                                                                     
     examination;                                                                                                               
                     (C)   the   prosecutor    and   any    attorney                                                            
     representing the defendant  were not present when the statement                                                            
     was taken;                                                                                                                 
                     (D) the recording is on videotape or other                                                                 
     format  that records  both the visual  and aural components  of                                                            
     the statement;                                                                                                             
                     (E) each person who participated in the taking                                                             
     of the statement is identified on the recording;                                                                           
                     (F) the taking of the statement as a whole was                                                             
     conducted  in a manner that would avoid undue  influence of the                                                            
     victim;                                                                                                                    
                     (G) the defense has been provided a reasonable                                                             
     opportunity  to view the recording  before the proceeding;  and                                                            
                     (H) the court has had an opportunity to view                                                               
     the recording  and determine  that it is sufficiently  reliable                                                            
     and  trustworthy and  that the  interests of  justice are  best                                                            
     served by admitting the recording into evidence.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Wilken moved Amendment #5.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green stated  that this  amendment  would remove  language                                                            
adopted  by the Senate  Judiciary  Committee, as  "that language  is                                                            
standard for  a criminal trial not  a civil trial". Removal  of this                                                            
language would maintain the order of civil trail proceedings.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
7:06:31 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Senator  Hoffman asked  the reasons  for  the action  of the  Senate                                                            
Judiciary Committee.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Ms.  Moss  responded  that  the  intent  of  the  Committee  was  to                                                            
incorporate  language from  another  bill into  this bill.  However,                                                            
this bill relates to civil rather than criminal law.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green stated that  the [unspecified]  bill from which  the                                                            
language  was  fashioned  related  to  criminal  rather  than  civil                                                            
statutes.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Senator Hoffman acknowledged.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Without objection, Amendment #5 was ADOPTED.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Wilken  moved  to  report the  bill  from  Committee  with                                                            
individual recommendations and accompanying fiscal notes.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
There being  no objection,  SCS CS SS HB  53(FIN) was REPORTED  from                                                            
Committee  with $82,700 fiscal  note #12 dated  April 27, 2005  from                                                            
the Public Defender  Agency, Department of Administration;  $161,300                                                            
fiscal  note #13  dated April  27, 2005  from the  Office of  Public                                                            
Advocacy,  Department  of Administration;  $94,900  fiscal note  #14                                                            
dated April 27,  2005 from the Alaska Court System;  $142,700 fiscal                                                            
note  #15  dated  April 26,  2005  from  the  Office  of  Children's                                                            
Services, Department of  Health and Social Services; $106,200 fiscal                                                            
note #16  dated April 27,  2005 from the  Front Line Social  Workers                                                            
component, Office  of Children's Services, Department  of Health and                                                            
Social Services;  and $586,400 fiscal note #17 dated  April 27, 2005                                                            
from the Department of Law.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
AT EASE 7:07:41 PM / 7:12:09 PM                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 279(FIN)                                                                                             
     "An Act relating to encroachments in the right-of-way of a                                                                 
     highway."                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
This was  the second  hearing for  this bill in  the Senate  Finance                                                            
Committee.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
BEN MULLIGAN, Staff to  Representative Bill Stoltze, recounted that,                                                            
during  the  first  hearing  on  this  bill,   Senator  Stedman  had                                                            
requested the  Department of Transportation  and Public Facilities'                                                             
input on certain provisions of the bill.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Senator  Stedman stated  his  desire was  to hear  the Department's                                                             
position regarding  the right of way  restrictions addressed  in the                                                            
bill.                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
JOHN  MACKINNON,   Deputy  Commissioner,   Highways  and   Aviation,                                                            
Department  of Transportation  and Public  Facilities, informed  the                                                            
Committee  that the  Department "welcomes  the  legislation",  as it                                                            
would  allow  the  Department  to conduct  activities  in  a  manner                                                            
desired.  While  the Department  currently  has  authority  in  this                                                            
regard, this bill  would clarify that authority and  improve current                                                            
regulations  by  implementing  a  six-part  encroachment  test.  The                                                            
Department  worked  closely  with both  the  Senate and  House  bill                                                            
sponsors  in the development  of the bill.  While the bill  has been                                                            
improved during  its transit through the committee  hearing process,                                                            
some additional  amendments would be desired. The  Department of Law                                                            
also supports the bill.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  CHARLIE HUGGINS,  Senate  Transportation  Committee  Chair,                                                            
explained  that Amendment  #1 would  align language  in HB 279  with                                                            
that of the Senate Transportation Committee's companion bill.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
[NOTE: Amendment  #1 was  adopted during the  May 7, 2005  Committee                                                            
hearing on this bill.]                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green  noted that Amendment #1 specified  that in order for                                                            
an encroachment  to  be considered  it would  have had  to exist  by                                                            
January 1,  2005. It also removed  the liability on the part  of the                                                            
State for any damages.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Senator Huggins concurred.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
AT EASE 7:17:06 PM / 7:18:10 PM                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Amendment #2:  This amendment deletes  all material in Sec.  2(c)(2)                                                            
on page two, lines  ten and eleven of the bill and  replaces it with                                                            
the following.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
     (2) The applicant has demonstrated the encroachment was                                                                    
     erected with the good faith belief it was lawful to erect and                                                              
     maintain the encroachment in its location.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
The  amendment also  deletes  the  entirety of  Sec.  2(g) that  was                                                            
adopted in  Amendment #1  during the May  7, 2005 Committee  hearing                                                            
and replaces it with the following.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
     (g) The state is not liable for damage to, or damage or injury                                                             
     resulting from the presence of, an encroachment in the right-                                                              
     of-way of a state highway.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Wilken moved for the adoption of Amendment #2.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green clarified  that she was the sponsor of the amendment.                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Mr. MacKinnon  explained  that the  proposed  Sec. 2(c)(2)  language                                                            
would  further "strengthen"  the intent  of the  term "good  faith".                                                            
This language change was suggested by the Department of Law.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
There being no objection, Amendment #2 was ADOPTED.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Mulligan pointed  out that the Department of Law  also suggested                                                            
that the Sec.  2(g) language adopted in Amendment  #1 be replaced by                                                            
that proposed  in Amendment #2 in  order to "completely"  remove the                                                            
State from  any liability issues were  someone harmed as  the result                                                            
"of hitting an encroachment".                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Senator Hoffman  questioned the need  to hire four new right-of-way                                                             
agents as  depicted in the  Department's April  28 2005 fiscal  note                                                            
#1.                                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Mr.  MacKinnon  stated  that  considerable  effort  was  exerted  in                                                            
refining  the fiscal note;  initial expenses  were much higher.  The                                                            
note is  an estimate  based on  the average  number of encroachment                                                             
issues  the Department  deals with  on an annual  basis. The  actual                                                            
expense is  unknown as there is no  history pertaining to  the terms                                                            
included  in the bill.  Prior activity in  regards to encroachments                                                             
was simply  to have  them removed.  The note  anticipates that  one-                                                            
third  of  the  annual   encroachments  would  undergo   the  permit                                                            
application  process. The  note would  be lower  were fewer  permits                                                            
requested. The six-part  test would assure that permits would not be                                                            
"rubber stamped". Permits  would not be issued for things that would                                                            
place the  public in  an unsafe  position or  something "that  would                                                            
likely  be   hit".  A  thorough  determination   process   would  be                                                            
conducted.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
7:22:55 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Senator Hoffman stated,  therefore, that the question is whether the                                                            
end result of the bill would be worth the expense.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green understood  that the provisions of the bill would not                                                            
apply to commercial operations.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Mr. MacKinnon  affirmed that it is not the intent  of the Department                                                            
to apply  the  provisions  of this  bill to  commercial operations.                                                             
However,  he  noted that  50  commercial  encroachment  permits  are                                                            
currently handled under  existing regulations, and that the existing                                                            
fee  structure  contributes   approximately  $107,000   annually  in                                                            
economic rent to the Department  including approximately $7,000 each                                                            
from four  cellular  phone towers.  Most of  the current  commercial                                                            
encroachments   involve   small   areas   whose  rent   amounts   to                                                            
approximately $100 per year.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Mr. MacKinnon  stated that an application  fee would be imposed  for                                                            
the residential  application. Permits are issued for  five years and                                                            
could be renewed in five-year  increments. No annual rent is charged                                                            
for residential encroachments.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Senator Stedman asked how quickly a permit could be cancelled.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Mr.  MacKinnon replied  that,  were the  area required  for  highway                                                            
purposes, a  30-day cancellation notification  would be required  by                                                            
regulation.  Highway   needs  take  precedence  over   the  public's                                                            
privilege to use the right of way "granted through permit".                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green questioned  the reason  that  four new right-of-way                                                             
agent  positions  would be  required  since the  Department  already                                                            
conducts this activity.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Mr. MacKinnon  responded that while  the Department could  currently                                                            
conduct this activity,  this legislation would implement  a new "set                                                            
of rules".  There would be  a higher application  fee and an  annual                                                            
fee. This  legislation would  also "differentiate"  the residential                                                             
encroachments from all the others.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green  noted  that  the fiscal  note  specifies  that  the                                                            
expenses would  lower in the out-years.  However, she asked  whether                                                            
it  would  be  necessary  to  retain  the  four right-of-way   agent                                                            
positions over time.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Mr. MacKinnon  assured  that the  Department would  not endeavor  to                                                            
create  a   program  that  would   seek  to  identify  right-of-way                                                             
encroachments.  Right-of-way  encroachments would  be identified  in                                                            
conjunction  with the undertaking  of a highway  project. This  bill                                                            
would require  more work  than is presently  done in regards  to the                                                            
permitting  process. The  Department,  as property  managers of  the                                                            
right of way, would be  required to insure that the encroachments do                                                            
not change  during the  five-year  permit time and  become a  public                                                            
hazard.  Therefore a  review period  would also  be assigned  to the                                                            
five-year period.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Senator  Dyson  voiced   appreciation  for  the  work   involved  in                                                            
developing  this legislation as it  relates to situations  occurring                                                            
in  his   election  district.   He  specifically   appreciated   the                                                            
Department's   comments  spoken   during   this  hearing.   Improved                                                            
regulations would be appreciated.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Mr. MacKinnon  allowed that  some in the  Department do not  support                                                            
this  action;   however,   the  clarifications   provided  by   this                                                            
legislation would be appreciated.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Senator Huggins stated  that Senator Dyson and Senator Stedman could                                                            
both attest  that,  when dealing  with areas  that have "restricted                                                             
terrain",  people tend to  build right on  the road. This  activity,                                                            
however,  makes it  difficult to  widen or  improve  a road. In  the                                                            
past, in  order to meet  the federal funding  guidelines, the  State                                                            
has  simply   bulldozed   down  right-of-way   encroachments.   This                                                            
legislation  would  "formalize  a  process" and  allow  citizens  to                                                            
petition for  a permit. He voiced  appreciation for Mr. MacKinnon's                                                             
efforts   in  spearheading   this  effort   in  a  cooperative   and                                                            
understanding  manner. Efforts have  been made to address  this in a                                                            
manner that is good for Alaskans.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green agreed  that  the process  has been  conducted  in a                                                            
different  manner  than it  was  approximately  ten years  prior  in                                                            
regards to a similar issue.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Wilken  moved  to  report   the  bill,  as  amended,  from                                                            
Committee with  individual recommendations  and accompanying  fiscal                                                            
notes.                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
There being no  objection, the SCS CS HB 279(FIN)  was REPORTED from                                                            
Committee with  $418,500 fiscal note  #1, dated April 28,  2005 from                                                            
the Department of Transportation and Public Facilities.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 130(FIN) am                                                                                          
     "An  Act relating  to the grant  of certain  state land  to the                                                            
     University  of Alaska; relating  to the duties of the  Board of                                                            
     Regents;  establishing  the  university  research  forest;  and                                                            
     providing for an effective date."                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
This was  the second  hearing for  this bill in  the Senate  Finance                                                            
Committee.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
PETE  KELLY,  State   Relations  Director,  University   of  Alaska,                                                            
specified  that the  University is  a State land  grant entity  that                                                            
"was  founded with  the intent  that it  would create  a land  grant                                                            
trust"  that would  supplement its  day-to-day  activities. To  that                                                            
point, he emphasized  that the Land  Grant Trust is operational  and                                                            
does financially  support the University.  The debate regarding  the                                                            
University  land  grant  issue  began in  1915  when  a territorial                                                             
delegate,  James  Wickersham,  envisioned  a  State  university.  He                                                            
lobbied  before  the United  States  Congress  for this  land  grant                                                            
endowment,  and, in  1929, the  State received  its University  land                                                            
grant entitlement.  Unfortunately,  at the time, a vast majority  of                                                            
the State was  not surveyed; therefore  the process of transferring                                                             
land  was slow.  Only  two  grants,  totally  approximately  113,000                                                            
acres,  had  been transferred  to  the  University  by the  time  of                                                            
Statehood,  and "the  Statehood Act  superseded all  of the  federal                                                            
legislation dealing with Alaska."                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Kelly  stated that the  total acreage  that was provided  to the                                                            
University's  land  grant program  amounted  to 140,000  acres:  the                                                            
combination of the 113,000  federally granted acreage and other land                                                            
grants  to the  University. The  University  is "a  very small  land                                                            
grant institution"  which only ranks ahead of Hawaii  and Delaware's                                                            
land grant university programs in size.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
7:32:04 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Kelly characterized  the University as having "a very successful                                                            
land department". Since  1986, the University has sold 1,200 parcels                                                            
of land.  The University  is "the most successful  public entity  in                                                            
the  State   for   getting  land   into  private   ownership".   The                                                            
University's  educational  endowment,  which  is  established  as  a                                                            
percent  of   market  value  (POMV)   payout  structure,   nets  the                                                            
University  approximately  $5,000,000 annually.  The endowment  fund                                                            
currently has a value of approximately $135,000,000.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Mr.  Kelly  stated  that  during  the  process  involved  with  this                                                            
legislation,  a significant  amount of public  comment in regard  to                                                            
how the University "treats its disposal of land" occurred.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
7:32:40 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Kelly communicated  that the University has attempted "to assure                                                            
everyone  at every step"  that "a  very very public  process"  is in                                                            
place.  "University land  issues are  routine subjects  of Board  of                                                            
Regents meetings" which  are public forums. The Board's decisions on                                                            
land are formed in consideration of the public process.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Kelly noted  that one of the greatest areas of  concern relating                                                            
to  this bill  has  been in  regard  to land  parcels  in  Southeast                                                            
Alaska.  To that  point,  he noted  that  private land  holdings  in                                                            
Southeast  Alaska  amount  to  approximately   one  percent  of  the                                                            
landmass. This  bill would change  that percentage "to one  and two-                                                            
tenths of one  percent". The University  has addressed the  concerns                                                            
of municipalities  that might  attempt to form  boroughs at  a later                                                            
date,  and in  addition  has  agreed to  take  lands that  might  be                                                            
subject to federal claims.  Furthermore, the University would accept                                                            
land  containing   established  trails.  In  the  past,   agreements                                                            
regarding  such trails  have been  made, to include  such things  as                                                            
providing easements  or relocation of the trail. Nonetheless,  a few                                                            
concerns continue.  "The University is a responsible  land developer                                                            
and a successful  land developer."  Even were  the University  to be                                                            
granted the  entirety of the lands  proposed in this bill,  it would                                                            
continue  to  be   defined  as  a  small  land  grant  institution.                                                             
Nonetheless,  the University  is looking forward  to increasing  its                                                            
land   holdings  to   a  level   "that  is   consistent  with   most                                                            
universities".                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
7:34:18 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green  asked for verification that the land  being proposed                                                            
for transfer to the University was currently State owned land.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Kelly affirmed.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green   understood  therefore  that  the   State  has  the                                                            
authority to either sell that land or give it to someone else.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
JANET  BURLESON-BAXTER,  Special   Assistant  to  the Commissioner,                                                             
Department of  Natural Resources affirmed that the  land in question                                                            
could be sold.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green ascertained  therefore, that  the legislation  would                                                            
not  change  the classification  of  the  land,  or making  it  more                                                            
available  or more or less  restrictive.  The proposal would  simply                                                            
move land from one State entity to another.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
BOB  LOEFFLER,  Director,  Division   of  Mining,  Land  and  Water,                                                            
Department  of Natural Resources testified  via teleconference  from                                                            
an offnet  site and  agreed that,  "in general",  Co-Chair Green  is                                                            
correct that the State  "could do any number of things with the land                                                            
although there are land  use plans that say what" the State is going                                                            
to do with  the land. "For the most  part, the lands" identified  in                                                            
this  bill  that are  located  in  Southeast  Alaska  are  currently                                                            
included  in "development  categories".  To  that point,  the  State                                                            
could plan "to set the  land aside for a kind of development whether                                                            
that be sales  or commercial lodges  or whatever. However,  he noted                                                            
that there are  two to four parcels, however, that  are inconsistent                                                            
with "what the State's planning says".                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
7:36:47 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
JOE  BEEDLE,   Vice  President,  Finance,   University  of   Alaska,                                                            
testified  via  teleconference  from an  offnet  site  and spoke  in                                                            
appreciation  for the  Committee subcommittee's  May  2, 2005  three                                                            
hour public hearing in  which approximately 40 individuals testified                                                            
about  the bill.  He also  noted that  "numerous  misconceptions  or                                                            
misunderstandings"  about  this  legislation  were  addressed  in  a                                                            
report  titled  "Department  of Natural  Resources  University  Land                                                            
Transfer Factsheet February 4, 2005" [copy on file].                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Beedle  expressed that  the University  has deemed the  language                                                            
proposed in the Committee's  committee substitute, draft Version 24-                                                            
GH1034\P as being acceptable.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green  asked whether any  of the land parcels selected  for                                                            
sale would  negatively impact  the Iditarod  Trail Sled Dog  Race or                                                            
other traditional dog sled racing trails.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
7:38:10 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Loeffler  informed the Committee  that the Iditarod trail  would                                                            
not  be  affected  by  the  proposed  land  selection;  however  the                                                            
Haessler-Norris  Trail  System  does  transit  one of  the  selected                                                            
parcels.  In response  to  this concern,  the  State  has agreed  to                                                            
reserve  the Haessler-Norris  Trail  System before  that parcel  was                                                            
conveyed to  the University. He also  noted that that specific  land                                                            
parcel  is classified  for "settlement,  meaning  the State had  the                                                            
expectation  of selling it". Regardless  of whether that  parcel was                                                            
sold to  the University  or sold  for settlement,  the trail  system                                                            
would be preserved and protected.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green acknowledged the comments.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
7:39:10 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Senator Hoffman  noted that during the public testimony  hearings on                                                            
this  bill, concern  was voiced  regarding  Native  claims on  land,                                                            
specifically to Parcel 10 around McCarthy.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Loeffler informed  the Committee that the Department  of Natural                                                            
Resources is unaware  of any Native land allotments  in the McCarthy                                                            
parcel. Nonetheless,  were Native allotments uncovered,  "they would                                                            
have precedence over conveyance to the University".                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Senator Hoffman  asked whether this would also be  the case with any                                                            
other parcels being considered for conveyance.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Loeffler  affirmed that  to be true. Language  was added  to the                                                            
bill that specifically  stated that Native allotments  were "a valid                                                            
possessary  right  that  would  remain   valid".  In  addition,  the                                                            
question pertaining  to Native allotments to parcels  such as Biorka                                                            
Island  and  Lisianski  Peninsula   in Southeast   Alaska  would  be                                                            
addressed before those  parcels could be conveyed to the University.                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Senator  Stedman   asked  that  the  report  from  the  Committee's                                                             
subcommittee assigned to  review this bill be provided. In addition,                                                            
he asked that  the public process involved with this  legislation be                                                            
reviewed.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Wilken  read the May 7, 2005  memorandum [copy on  file] he                                                            
wrote to Co-Chair  Green on behalf  of the Committee's subcommittee                                                             
on HB 130 as follows.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
     The Senate Finance  Subcommittee for House Bill 130, University                                                            
     Land Grant/State  Forest, met Monday evening,  May 2, 2005. The                                                            
     purpose  of the  meeting  was to  provide the  opportunity  for                                                            
     statewide public testimony.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     The following is a numerical summary of the testimony given:                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     1) Total Number of Participants                39                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
     2) Geographical Area of the State                                                                                        
        S.E. Alaska Participants          24        61%                                                                         
        McCarthy Area Participants         7        18%                                                                         
        Mat-Su Area Participants           5        13%                                                                         
        Other Area Participants            3         8%                                                                     
                                          39        100%                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
     In addition, I would make the following comments:                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
          1) In regards to Southeast Alaska:                                                                                  
          The  testimony was spread  across many sites in  Southeast                                                            
          Alaska.  As you would expect, the testimony  was localized                                                            
          by  sub-area across  the broad  region. Most participants                                                             
          recommended  that specific land parcels not be conveyed to                                                            
          the University of Alaska.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
          2) In regards to the McCarthy area:                                                                                 
          The  testimony  revolved  around  the United  States  Park                                                            
          Service's   continued  restriction  and  constriction   of                                                            
          usable  land around the McCarthy area.  It was stated that                                                            
          further  withdrawals by  the University would just  make a                                                            
          bad situation worse.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
          3) In regards to the Mat-Su area:                                                                                   
          The  testimony was almost entirely confined  to the Frying                                                            
          Pan  Lake area and the multiple system  of world-class dog                                                            
          mushing trails situated therein.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     Thank you for the opportunity to accept the public's input on                                                              
     this important legislation. I commend House Bill 130 to you                                                                
      and stand ready to assist in passing it from Committee.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
                          Gary Wilken, subcommittee chair                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Senator  Stedman spoke  of his concerns  regarding  "the lack  of" a                                                            
public   process  pertaining   to  this  bill.   The  multitude   of                                                            
correspondence  he  has  received  from House  District  2  includes                                                            
correspondence  from mayors,  councils,  and assemblies  as well  as                                                            
individuals.  The  fact  that  the  majority  of  communities  in  a                                                            
specific  district have requested  their elected  official  to "slow                                                            
the process  down and  to have  more dialogue  with the communities                                                             
affected and  each community has a  little difference issues…"  is a                                                            
matter  of   concern.  The  issue   for  some  of  the  unorganized                                                             
communities  that were considering  expanding and forming  boroughs,                                                            
was that the land  selected was the only land available.  He allowed                                                            
that some of those issues have been addressed.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Senator Stedman  continued that communities  that are boroughs  have                                                            
voiced  concern   that  the  public  process  guidelines   that  the                                                            
Department of Natural Resources  must follow regarding land disposal                                                            
"are   substantially   different"  than   those   required  of   the                                                            
University.  The concern  is  that the  in-depth  planning that  was                                                            
conducted over  the last couple of decades including  such things as                                                            
comprehensive   plans  and  coastal   management  plans,   has  been                                                            
"virtually derailed".                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Senator Stedman  informed the Committee that letters  of concern are                                                            
continuing  to arrive  in  his office  from  communities  throughout                                                            
Southeast   Alaska.  "When  there's   that  much  concern,   there's                                                            
something wrong  with the system." As there does not  appear to be a                                                            
pressing  time element  pertaining  to  this legislation,  and  even                                                            
though "technically  the legislative process being  conducted is the                                                            
proper  process, "extra  efforts" could  be taken  "in such a  small                                                            
state" when there are such "broad concerns from communities".                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Senator  Stedman also  echoed Senator  Hoffman's  concern  regarding                                                            
Native allotment  issues. Many of  the parcels "in Southeast  Alaska                                                            
are intertwined with either  Native grave sites or Native allotments                                                            
or  potential  Native allotments".   Written  records prior  to  the                                                            
creation  of the Tongass  Regional Forest in  1907, were sparse.  As                                                            
Native elders  die, it is difficult  to transfer the knowledge  from                                                            
one generation  to the next and attempt  "to substantiate  it to the                                                            
Western world  of paper and documentation".  While some Native  land                                                            
has been deeded and several  allotments have been platted but not of                                                            
yet deeded, quite a few have not reached the platting phase.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
7:48:07 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Senator  Stedman  opined  that  "the  more  legitimate  concerns  of                                                            
watershed issues and planning  issues" are "screened or derailed" by                                                            
objections  from people  who  simply do  not "want  a neighbor".  He                                                            
urged that Committee  members "look beyond those "non-substantiated                                                             
or non-substantial  concerns and focus  more on the issues"  brought                                                            
forth  by the  local  communities.  He opined  that  "a poor  public                                                            
process"   has   been  experienced   with   this   legislation,   as                                                            
"unfortunately"  the concerns  of  the major  communities have  been                                                            
drowned  out".  It  has  not  "instilled   good  will"  between  the                                                            
University and the local communities.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Wilken  moved to adopt the SCS CS HB 130(FIN),  Version 24-                                                            
GH1034\P as the working document.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Senator Stedman  remarked that Version  "P" "looks better  than some                                                            
of the other bill versions".                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
There being  no objection,  Version "P" was  ADOPTED as the  working                                                            
document.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Amendment  #1: This amendment  deletes "."  following "Bay"  in Sec.                                                            
3(n)(7) on page six, line nine and inserts ";                                                                                   
     (8) Parcel Number ST. 1002, Pelican;                                                                                       
     (9) Parcel Number MF. 1002, Idaho Inlet;                                                                                   
     (10) Parcel Number PA 1002, Mite Cove;                                                                                     
     (11) Parcel Number ST. 1001, Middle Island;                                                                                
     (12) Parcel Number PA. 1002, Biorka Island;                                                                                
     (13) Parcel Number PA. 1001, Port Conclusion;                                                                              
     (14) Parcel Number ST.LS.1001, Lisianski Peninsula;                                                                        
     (15) Parcel Number SD. 1001, Beecher Pass;                                                                                 
     (16) Parcel Number SD. 1001, Favor Peak;                                                                                   
     (17) Parcel Number CS.TL. 1001, Three Lake Road;                                                                           
     (18) Parcel Number SD. 1001, Read Island;                                                                                  
     (19) Parcel Number SD. 1001, Whitney Island;                                                                               
     (20) Parcel Number CS.EW. 1001, Earl West Cove;                                                                            
     (21) Parcel Number CS.OV. 1001, Olive Cove;                                                                                
     (22) Parcel Number SD. 1001, Thoms Place;                                                                                  
     (23) Parcel Number PW.HK. 1001, Hook Arm;                                                                                  
     (24) Parcel Number HA.CH. 1001, Haines-Chilkoot;                                                                           
     (25) Parcel Number PW.NA. 1001, Naukati Sound."                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
In addition,  this amendment deletes  subsections "o", "p",  and "q"                                                            
in Sec. 3 beginning  on page six, line ten through  page seven, line                                                            
15.                                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Senator Stedman moved Amendment #1.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green objected.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Senator  Stedman  stated  that this  amendment  would  increase  the                                                            
amount of parcels in Southeast  Alaska that would not be conveyed to                                                            
the University.  He noted that were  this amendment adopted  and the                                                            
University  and the State to continue  their desire to convey  these                                                            
parcels,  "a more amiable  public process  and working relationship                                                             
with the communities" could be established.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
[NOTE: Co-Chair Wilken chaired this portion of the meeting.]                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
A roll call was taken on the motion.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
IN FAVOR: Senator Stedman                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
OPPOSED:  Senator Dyson  Co-Chair Wilken,  Senator Hoffman,  Senator                                                            
Olson, and Co-Chair Green                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
ABSENT: Senator Bunde                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
The motion FAILED (1-5-1)                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
[NOTE: Co-Chair Green resumed chair.]                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Amendment  #2: This amendment  deletes "."  following "Bay"  in Sec.                                                            
3(n)(7) on page six, line nine and inserts ";                                                                                   
     (8)Parcel Number ST. 1001, Middle Island;                                                                                  
     (9) Parcel Number PA. 1002, Biorka Island;                                                                                 
     (10) Parcel Number PA. 1001, Port Conclusion;                                                                              
      (11) Parcel Number ST. LS. 1001, Lisianski Peninsula;"                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Senator Stedman moved to adopt Amendment #2.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green objected.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Senator  Stedman explained  that this  amendment  would remove  land                                                            
parcels  within  the  City  and Borough  of  Sitka.  He  noted  that                                                            
language  had  been   added  to  the  bill  that  would   allow  the                                                            
unorganized  boroughs  of  Petersburg,   Pelican,  and  Wrangell  to                                                            
organize  by  the  year 2009.  Were  that  action  to  occur,  those                                                            
communities  could select from State  land around their communities                                                             
by the  year 2013.  That language  could not apply  to Sitka  as the                                                            
specified parcels  are within the  borough. Lisianski Peninsula  has                                                            
been logged; Biorka Island,  which is a secluded uninhabited island,                                                            
contains an aircraft communication station.                                                                                     
7:56:27 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Senator Stedman noted that  the State has already sold the shoreline                                                            
areas  of Middle  Island. Therefore,  the  majority of  the land  on                                                            
Middle  Island  that  would  be conveyed  to  the  University  would                                                            
consist  of  a  small   mountain  in  the  center  of   the  island.                                                            
Discussions  have occurred  regarding demolishing  that mountain  as                                                            
jets fly  over it on their  approach to  the Sitka airport.  Neither                                                            
Middle Island nor Lisianski  Peninsula would be considered desirable                                                            
land sites. Port Conclusion has issues as well.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Senator Dyson  asked Senator Stedman  whether Middle Island  was one                                                            
of the areas that contained military gun sites.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Senator Stedman clarified that Biorka Island had gun placements.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Mr.  Loeffler expressed  that  the University  could  utilize  these                                                            
areas in a manner consistent  with the needs of the Federal Aviation                                                            
Administration and within other physical parameters.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Senator Olson,  himself a  pilot, stated that  he has some  aviation                                                            
concerns relating  to conveying Biorka  Island and Middle  Island to                                                            
the University.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green asked the  Department of  Natural Resources  whether                                                            
selection of these areas might raise aviation concerns.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Mr.  Loeffler  viewed  the  University   as being   "an intelligent                                                             
developer". While there  could "be things they would want to develop                                                            
around"…there  is "no significant disadvantage". They  could develop                                                            
the sites  in a manner  "consistent with"  the needs of the  Federal                                                            
Aviation  Administration  (FAA).  Were the  land was  not  developed                                                            
within ten years, the University's  Board of Regents could decide to                                                            
return it to the State if they deemed the land of "no value".                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Mr.  Kelly informed  that  while the  FAA has  not  objected to  the                                                            
transfer of these land  parcels, they have asked that the University                                                            
contact them. The University has agreed to do so.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Senator Stedman noted that  Biorka Island contained some Native land                                                            
allotments.   In  addition,  Native   gravesites  have  been   found                                                            
"scattered amongst the  islands" around Sitka. Such sites could also                                                            
be found on Lisianski Peninsula.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green  stated that  this  concern  could be  addressed  by                                                            
language in Sec. 3(e),  page three lines 27 through 31 that reads as                                                            
follows.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
     (e) Land  conveyed under this  section to the Board  of Regents                                                            
     in trust  for the University of Alaska is subject  to any valid                                                            
     possessory  interest or other  valid existing right,  including                                                            
     any  lease, license,  prospecting  site, claim,  sale,  permit,                                                            
     right-of-way,  Native  allotment, or easement  held by  another                                                            
     person,  including a  federal, state,  or municipal agency,  on                                                            
     the effective date of this section.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
8:01:55 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green declared  that the  language in  this section  would                                                            
provide  "pretty  good safeguards  for  the various  interests  that                                                            
exist or might be found to exist".                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Senator Stedman  expressed that the only Native cemetery  gravesites                                                            
in Sitka were  developed after the Russians settled  in Sitka. Other                                                            
gravesites are unmarked.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
A roll call was taken on the motion to adopt Amendment #2.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
IN FAVOR: Senator Stedman, Senator Dyson, and Senator Olson.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
OPPOSED: Senator Hoffman, Co-Chair Wilken, and Co-Chair Green.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
ABSENT: Senator Bunde                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
The motion FAILED (3-3-1).                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Amendment #2 FAILED to be adopted.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Amendment  #3: This amendment deletes "AS 14.40.365 - 14.40.367[AS                                                              
14.40.365 - 14.40.368] in Sec.2, page two, line 31 through page                                                                 
three, line one and replaces it with "AS 14.40.365 - 14.40.368".                                                                
                                                                                                                                
[NOTE: This amendment was drafted to a bill version that was not in                                                             
the Committee's possession. The intent of the Committee was to                                                                  
conform the amendment to Version "X".]                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
The amendment also adds a new bill section on page ten following                                                                
line nine as follows.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
      Sec. 7. AS 14.40.368 is repealed and reenacted to read:                                                                   
          Sec. 14.40.368. Sale of land received under AS.                                                                       
     14.40.365.  (a)  The sale  of  land conveyed  to  the Board  of                                                            
     Regents  in  trust  for  the  University  of  Alaska  under  AS                                                            
     14.40.365  shall  be  made at  public  auction to  the  highest                                                            
     qualified  bidder as determined  by the Board of Regents.   The                                                            
     Board  of Regents  may accept  bids  and sell  land under  this                                                            
     section  at  no less  than 70  percent  of the  appraised  fair                                                            
     market  value of  the land.   To qualify  to participate  under                                                            
     this  section in a public  auction of  land under this  section                                                            
     that  is other  than commercial,  industrial,  or agricultural                                                             
     land, a bidder  shall have been a resident of  the state for at                                                            
     least  one year immediately preceding  the date of the  auction                                                            
     and  submit  proof  of  that  fact  as  the  Board  of  Regents                                                            
     requires.  A bidder may be represented by an  attorney or agent                                                            
     at the auction. An  aggrieved bidder may appeal to the Board of                                                            
     Regents  for reconsideration  within five days after  the sale.                                                            
     The  sale shall  be conducted  by  a person  designated by  the                                                            
     Board  of Regents,  and, at the  time of  sale, the  successful                                                            
     bidder shall deposit  with the Board of Regents an amount equal                                                            
     to at  least five percent  of the purchase  price.  The  person                                                            
     designated  by the Board of Regents  to conduct the  sale shall                                                            
     immediately  issue a  receipt containing  a description  of the                                                            
     land  or property  purchased,  the price  bid,  and the  amount                                                            
     deposited. The receipt  shall be acknowledged in writing by the                                                            
     bidder.                                                                                                                    
          (b) Before the signing of the formal conveyance, the                                                                  
     Board  of Regents may reject  all bids when the best  interests                                                            
     of the state and the  University of Alaska justify this action.                                                            
      Land  offered  at  public  sale  but  not  sold  may  be  made                                                            
     available  at  private sale  for not  less than  its  appraised                                                            
     value.                                                                                                                     
          (c) The contract of sale for land sold at public auction                                                              
     under this section  shall require the remainder of the purchase                                                            
     price to be paid in  monthly, quarterly, or annual installments                                                            
     over a period  of not more than 20 years, with  interest at the                                                            
     rate  provided in  (i) of  this section.  Installment  payments                                                          
      plus interest shall be set on the level-payment basis.                                                                    
          (d) The contract for each sale must set out the period                                                                
     for the  payment of installments  and the total purchase  price                                                            
     plus interest.   With the consent of the Board  of Regents, the                                                            
     contract  may also include conditions,  limitations,  and terms                                                            
     considered  necessary and  proper to  protect the interests  of                                                            
     the  state and the University  of Alaska.   A violation  of any                                                            
     provision  of the contract  of sale  subjects the purchaser  to                                                            
     appropriate   administrative   and  legal   action,   including                                                            
     specific  performance, foreclosure,  ejectment, or other  legal                                                            
     remedies in accordance with applicable state law.                                                                          
          (e) If a contract under this section has been breached,                                                               
     the  Board of Regents  may issue  a decision  to foreclose  and                                                            
     terminate  the contract at any  time that is more than  31 days                                                            
     after  delivering  by certified  mail a written  notice of  the                                                            
     breach  to the address  of record of  the purchaser.   A breach                                                            
     caused  by  the  failure  to  make  payments  required  by  the                                                            
     contract  may be cured within  30 days after the notice  of the                                                            
     breach  has been received  by the purchaser  by payment  of the                                                            
     sum  in default together  with the  larger of  a fee of  $50 or                                                            
     five  percent of  the sum  in default.  If  there are  material                                                            
     facts  in  dispute  between   the  Board  of  Regents  and  the                                                            
     purchaser,  the purchaser  may submit  a written request  for a                                                            
     public  hearing  for the  review of  the facts  within 30  days                                                            
     after the notice of the breach has been received.                                                                          
          (f) On a determination that there has been a breach of                                                                
     the  contract  based  on  the  administrative  record  and  the                                                            
     evidence  presented at  a hearing, the  Board of Regents  shall                                                            
     issue a decision foreclosing  the interest of the purchaser and                                                            
     terminating  the contract.    The obligation  to make  payments                                                            
     under the  contract continues through the date  of the decision                                                            
     to foreclose by the Board of Regents.                                                                                      
          (g) The Board of Regents shall deliver the decision to                                                                
     foreclose  and terminate  personally to  the purchaser  or send                                                            
     the  decision to  foreclose and  terminate  by certified  mail,                                                            
     return  receipt  requested, to  the address  of  record of  the                                                            
     purchaser.    If the  breach  is  a failure  to  make  payments                                                            
     required  by the contract, the  decision must include  a notice                                                            
     to the  purchaser that if, within  30 days, the purchaser  pays                                                            
     to  the University  of Alaska  the  full amount  of the  unpaid                                                            
     contract  price, including all  accrued interest, and  any fees                                                            
     assessed under (e)  of this section, the Board of Regents shall                                                            
     issue to the purchaser  a deed to the land.  If full payment is                                                            
     not  made  within 30  days  or the  breach  is for  other  than                                                            
     failure   to  make   payment,  the   decision  forecloses   and                                                            
     terminates all legal  and equitable rights the purchaser has in                                                            
     the land.                                                                                                                  
          (h) Within 30 days, the purchaser may request that the                                                                
     Board of  Regents reconsider the decision.  The  final decision                                                            
     by the Board of Regents is reviewable under AS 44.62.560.                                                                  
          (i) The interest rate for contracts under this section is                                                             
     the prime  rate as reported in  the Wall Street Journal  on the                                                            
     first business  day of the month in which the  contract is sent                                                            
     to the  purchaser for signature,  plus three percent;  however,                                                            
      the total rate of interest may not exceed 13.5 percent.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
In addition, the amendment deletes "AS 14.40.368 is repealed." on                                                               
page 11, line one and inserts the following.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
     AS 38.05.125(a) is amended to read:                                                                                        
          (a) Each contract for the sale, lease, or grant of state                                                              
     land, including land  conveyed to the Board of Regents in trust                                                          
     for the University  of Alaska under AS 14.40.365, and each deed                                                          
     to  state  land,   properties,  or  interest   in  state  land,                                                          
     including  land conveyed to the  Board of Regents in  trust for                                                          
     the  University  of  Alaska  under  AS  14.40.365,  made  under                                                          
     AS 14.40.368, AS 38.05.045  - 38.05.120, 38.05.321, 38.05.810 -                                                          
     38.05.825,   AS 38.08,  or  AS 38.50  except   as  provided  in                                                            
     AS 38.50.050  is subject  to the following  reservations:  "The                                                            
     party  of  the first  part,  Alaska,  hereby  expressly  saves,                                                            
     excepts  and  reserves  out  of the  grant  hereby  made,  unto                                                            
     itself,  its  lessees,  successors,  and assigns  forever,  all                                                            
     oils,  gases,  coal,  ores, minerals,  fissionable   materials,                                                            
     geothermal  resources,  and  fossils  of  every name,  kind  or                                                            
     description,  and  which  may be  in or  upon said  land  above                                                            
     described,  or any part thereof,  and the right to explore  the                                                            
     same for  such oils, gases, coal,  ores, minerals, fissionable                                                             
     materials,  geothermal  resources,  and  fossils,  and it  also                                                            
     hereby  expressly saves  and reserves  out of the grant  hereby                                                            
     made,  unto  itself,  its  lessees,  successors,   and  assigns                                                            
     forever,  the right to  enter by itself,  its or their  agents,                                                            
     attorneys,  and servants upon  said land, or any part  or parts                                                            
     thereof,  at any  and all  times for  the purpose  of  opening,                                                            
     developing,  drilling, and working  mines or wells on  these or                                                            
     other  land and  taking  out and  removing therefrom  all  such                                                            
     oils,  gases,  coal,  ores, minerals,  fissionable   materials,                                                            
     geothermal  resources, and fossils, and to that  end it further                                                            
     expressly  reserves out of the grant hereby made,  unto itself,                                                            
     its lessees, successors,  and assigns forever, the right by its                                                            
     or their  agents, servants and  attorneys at any and  all times                                                            
     to  erect, construct,  maintain,  and use  all such  buildings,                                                            
     machinery,  roads, pipelines,  powerlines, and railroads,  sink                                                            
     such shafts, drill  such wells, remove such soil, and to remain                                                            
     on said  land or any  part thereof for  the foregoing  purposes                                                            
     and  to occupy  as much  of said land  as may  be necessary  or                                                            
     convenient  for  such purposes  hereby expressly  reserving  to                                                            
     itself,  its lessees,  successors, and  assigns, as  aforesaid,                                                            
     generally  all rights  and power  in, to, and  over said  land,                                                            
     whether  herein  expressed  or  not,  reasonably  necessary  or                                                            
     convenient  to render  beneficial  and efficient  the  complete                                                            
     enjoyment   of  the  property   and  rights  hereby   expressly                                                            
     reserved.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Senator  Stedman moved Amendment  #3. This  amendment would  require                                                            
the University  to  conduct the  "more restrictive"  public  process                                                            
required of the  Department of Natural Resources in  regards to land                                                            
disposal.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
MARY MONTGOMERY, University  of Alaska, testified via teleconference                                                            
from an offset site and  stated that, while she had not been able to                                                            
review  the  amendment,  "the University  would  object  to  turning                                                            
ourselves  into  another  Department   of Natural   Resources".  She                                                            
credited  the  absence of  the  process required  of  Department  of                                                            
Natural Resources  as being one of  the reasons that the  University                                                            
is  successful  in  its  land management   program.  The  University                                                            
currently has  "a very adequate public  process". The Department  of                                                            
Natural Resources is required  to meet a larger public interest. The                                                            
University's  Land Grant  program "is  to generate  revenue for  the                                                            
Trust while  balancing the community's  interest". Adoption  of this                                                            
amendment  would  serve  "to  turn  the  University   into  another"                                                            
Department  of Natural Resources.  That Department "has a  difficult                                                            
time in getting real estate  available and into public hands because                                                            
of the cumbersome process" they must conduct.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green objected to the amendment.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Wilken  identified language in Sec. 4, page  seven, line 16                                                            
through page  eight, line 12 as "clearly"  defining the process  the                                                            
University must conduct  before disposing its land to a third party.                                                            
He reviewed  the policies  mandated in the  section. The attempt  to                                                            
address  land  disposal  concerns  "is  very  inclusive"  and  would                                                            
involve the local community.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
8:06:08 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Senator Olson stated that  one of his concerns was in regards to the                                                            
conveyance  of  University   land  "to another   entity  or  private                                                            
person".  To that point,  he asked whether  preference language  was                                                            
included  in  the bill  that  could  provide  a local  community  or                                                            
municipality priority conveyance rights over another entity.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Loeffler responded  in the affirmative. Language  in this regard                                                            
is included in Sec. 4(c) on page seven, lines 29 through 31.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
     (c) Before the Board of Regents of the University of Alaska                                                                
     offers a parcel of land for sale under this section, the board                                                             
      shall offer first refusal to the closest municipality.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green  commented that several issues have  been considered,                                                            
as exampled  by language in Sec. 3(k)  page three, lines  12 through                                                            
14 combined  with language  in Sec.  3(k)(3), page  three, lines  19                                                            
though 21. This language reads as follows.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     (k)  Notwithstanding  any  other  provision  of  this  section,                                                            
     within  10 years after conveyance  of land under this  section,                                                            
     the Board of Regents  may reconvey to the Department of Natural                                                            
     Resources land                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
          (3) that the Board of Regents and the commissioner of                                                                 
          natural resources jointly agree is in the best interests                                                              
           of the state and the university to reconvey.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
A roll call was taken on the motion to adopt amendment #3.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
IN FAVOR: Senator Stedman                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
OPPOSED:  Senator Olson,  Senator Dyson,  Senator Hoffman,  Co-Chair                                                            
Wilken, and Co-Chair Green                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
ABSENT: Senator Bunde                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
The motion FAILED (1-5-1)                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Amendment #3 FAILED to be ADOPTED.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Wilken  moved to report SCS CS HB 130 (FIN)  from Committee                                                            
with individual recommendations and accompanying fiscal notes.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Wilken amended  his motion  to include  the House  Finance                                                            
Committee Letter of Intent.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Senator Stedman objected.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
A roll call was taken on the motion.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
IN FAVOR: Senator  Dyson, Senator  Hoffman, Senator Olson,  Co-Chair                                                            
Wilken, and Co-Chair Green                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
OPPOSED: Senator Stedman                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
ABSENT: Senator Bunde                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
The motion PASSED (5-1-1)                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
S CS CS  HB 130(FIN), accompanied  by the  House of Representatives                                                             
Finance  Committee Letter  of Intent,  was REPORTED  from  Committee                                                            
with  zero  fiscal  note  #1,  dated  January   25,  2005  from  the                                                            
Department of  Fish and Game; $21,600 fiscal note  #2, dated January                                                            
11, 2005 from the Department  of Law; $380,000 fiscal note #3, dated                                                            
January  12, 2005  from the  Department  of Natural  Resources;  and                                                            
$500,000 fiscal note #4,  dated February 4, 2005 from the University                                                            
of Alaska.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
8:10:38 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 98(RLS)                                                                                              
     "An  Act relating  to  the compensation  of  the governor,  the                                                            
     lieutenant  governor, and certain  public officials,  officers,                                                            
     and employees not  covered by collective bargaining agreements;                                                            
     and providing for an effective date."                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
This  was the third  hearing  for this  bill in  the Senate  Finance                                                            
Committee.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green reminded  that this legislation  would address  non-                                                            
union public employee salaries and benefits.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Wilken moved to  adopt committee  substitute, Version  24-                                                            
GH1099\X as the working document.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green  explained that language in Sec. 12  page four, lines                                                            
17 through  24 has  been modified  to address  the issue of  bonuses                                                            
paid to Legislative employees. This language reads as follows.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
     Sec. 12. The uncodified law of the State of Alaska is amended                                                              
     by adding a new section to read:                                                                                           
          BONUSES FOR CERTAIN LEGISLATIVE EMPLOYEES. In addition to                                                             
     compensation authorized  under AS 24.10.200, an employee of the                                                            
     house  of representatives or  senate may be awarded  and paid a                                                            
     bonus   to  reward   extraordinary  effort,   competency,   job                                                            
     performance, or uncompensated  overtime. However, after January                                                            
     1,  2005, the authority  to award  and pay  a bonus under  this                                                            
     section is  terminated, and bonuses may not be  awarded or paid                                                            
     after that date.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green  stated that this language would clarify  this ruling                                                            
in Statute.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green stated that  in addition, language in Section 1, page                                                            
one, lines  six and seven would specify  that Legislators'  salaries                                                            
would be "equal  to Step A, Range 10, of the salary  schedule in AS.                                                            
39.27.011(a)."  The Speaker  of the House  and the Senate  President                                                            
would each be entitled  to an additional $500 a year while they held                                                            
that position.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green  also noted that Sec.  2 page one line 12  and Sec. 3                                                            
page  two line  one  would reflect  the  proposed  increased  salary                                                            
levels for the  Governor and Lieutenant Governor,  respectfully. The                                                            
proposed pay scales  for various non-union employees  for classified                                                            
and partially  exempt  employees in  the Executive  branch of  State                                                            
government  are reflected in  Sec. 5 page  two line 12 through  page                                                            
three line eight.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
AT EASE 8:13:22 PM / 8:19:00 PM                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Without objection, the  Version "X" committee substitute was ADOPTED                                                            
as the working document.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Conceptual  Amendment #1:  This amendment  adds  "and AS  24.10.210"                                                            
after  "AS 24.10.200,"  and replaces  "house  of representatives  or                                                            
senate" with "legislature"  in Sec. 12, page four,  lines 20 and 21.                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Senator Dyson  moved the amendment. He explained that  utilizing the                                                            
term "legislature"  would widen the  applicability of the  provision                                                            
to include  Legislative support staff.  The existing language  would                                                            
limit the provision  to the members of the House of  Representatives                                                            
and Senate staff.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Green agreed that  the proposed  language "would  properly                                                            
cover the proper employees".                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
There being no objection, Conceptual Amendment #1 was ADOPTED.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Wilken  moved  to  report   the  bill,  as  amended,  from                                                            
Committee with  individual recommendations  and accompanying  fiscal                                                            
notes.                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
There being no  objection, the S CS CS HB 98(FIN)  was REPORTED from                                                            
Committee  with $1,650,200  fiscal note #2,  dated January  24, 2005                                                            
from  the Legislative  Affairs  Agency;  $1,616,300  fiscal note  #4                                                            
dated April 12, 2005 from  the Alaska Court System,; and $10,463,000                                                            
fiscal note #5,  dated April 27, 2005 from the Office  of Management                                                            
and Budget.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
RECESS TO THE CALL OF THE CHAIR: 8:22:29 PM / 10:05:44 PM.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
[NOTE: The adjournment of this meeting was not recorded.]                                                                       
ADJOURNMENT                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Green adjourned the meeting at 10:05 PM.                                                                               

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