Legislature(2017 - 2018)SENATE FINANCE 532

03/07/2018 09:00 AM FINANCE

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Audio Topic
09:04:51 AM Start
09:06:34 AM Appointment: Alaska Mental Health Trust Authority Board of Trustees
09:43:48 AM Appointment: Regulatory Commission of Alaska
09:58:13 AM Adjourn
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
+ Consideration of Governor's Appointees TELECONFERENCED
Alaska Mental Health Trust Authority Board of
Mr. Mike Powers
Ms. Verne Boerner
Regulatory Commission of Alaska:
Ms. Janis Wilson
Mr. Paul Lisankie
+ Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled TELECONFERENCED
                 SENATE FINANCE COMMITTEE                                                                                       
                       March 7, 2018                                                                                            
                         9:04 a.m.                                                                                              
9:04:51 AM                                                                                                                    
CALL TO ORDER                                                                                                                 
Co-Chair  MacKinnon  called  the  Senate  Finance  Committee                                                                    
meeting to order at 9:04 a.m.                                                                                                   
MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                               
Senator Lyman Hoffman, Co-Chair                                                                                                 
Senator Anna MacKinnon, Co-Chair                                                                                                
Senator Click Bishop, Vice-Chair                                                                                                
Senator Peter Micciche                                                                                                          
Senator Donny Olson                                                                                                             
Senator Gary Stevens                                                                                                            
Senator Natasha von Imhof                                                                                                       
MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                                                                
PRESENT VIA TELECONFERENCE                                                                                                    
Mike   Powers,  Appointee,   Alaska   Mental  Health   Trust                                                                    
Authority,  Fairbanks;  Verne   Boerner,  Appointee,  Alaska                                                                    
Mental  Health  Trust  Authority, Anchorage;  Janis  Wilson,                                                                    
Appointee, Regulatory Commission  of Alaska, Anchorage; Paul                                                                    
Lisankie, Appointee, Regulatory Commission of Alaska.                                                                           
APPOINTMENT: ALASKA  MENTAL HEALTH TRUST AUTHORITY  BOARD OF                                                                    
APPOINTMENT: REGULATORY COMMISSION OF ALASKA                                                                                    
^APPOINTMENT: ALASKA MENTAL HEALTH  TRUST AUTHORITY BOARD OF                                                                  
9:06:34 AM                                                                                                                    
MIKE   POWERS,  APPOINTEE,   ALASKA   MENTAL  HEALTH   TRUST                                                                    
AUTHORITY,    FAIRBANKS   (via    teleconference),   (AMHTA)                                                                    
discussed his credentials. He stated  that he had served for                                                                    
10 years as  the Chief Financial Officer (CFO)  and 20 years                                                                    
as Chief  Executive Officer (CEO) at  Fairbanks Memorial. He                                                                    
spent one  year as an  interim chancellor at  the University                                                                    
of Alaska  Fairbanks (UAF). He  shared that as CEO,  much of                                                                    
his  time was  focused on  building programs  and recruiting                                                                    
personal   to  support   behavioral  related   programs  and                                                                    
services. He  noted that there  were related efforts  in the                                                                    
emergency  department,   police  departments,   and  support                                                                    
centers. He  noted the crisis situation  related to coverage                                                                    
for behavioral  health issues. He  shared that he had  a 23-                                                                    
year-old  developmentally disabled  niece.  His brother  had                                                                    
attempted to obtain  housing for her in the  Denver area. He                                                                    
noted   that  there   were   two  exceptionally   vulnerable                                                                    
populations:   seniors;    and   the   mentally    ill   and                                                                    
developmentally  disabled.  He  felt  that  his  background,                                                                    
experience, and desire were the  reasons for his interest in                                                                    
the position.                                                                                                                   
Co-Chair  MacKinnon wondered  whether  Mr.  Powers had  been                                                                    
employed by the  state within the last two  year. Mr. Powers                                                                    
replied  in the  affirmative. He  was interim  chancellor at                                                                    
Co-Chair MacKinnon  noted that there was  a prohibition that                                                                    
stated that  a member appointed  by the governor may  not be                                                                    
an officer  or employee  of the state,  or within  two years                                                                    
preceding  or during  the member's  term of  office have  an                                                                    
interest in, served  on a governing board,  or been employed                                                                    
by an organization  that had received money  from the Mental                                                                    
Health  Trust  Income  Account under  a  grant  or  contract                                                                    
services. She  wondered whether there  was a passage  of the                                                                    
threshold.  Mr.  Powers  replied   in  the  affirmative.  He                                                                    
finished in  May 2016,  so that  would be  two years  in the                                                                    
spring. He felt that UAF stood apart from a state agency.                                                                       
9:10:29 AM                                                                                                                    
Co-Chair   MacKinnon  noted   a   geographic  interest   for                                                                    
different  boards.  She  remarked  that  Fairbanks  was  not                                                                    
currently represented on the board.                                                                                             
Senator  von  Imhof  queried  a   process  the  board  could                                                                    
evaluate  the  limitation, and  whether  there  could be  an                                                                    
acceptance of the violation.                                                                                                    
Co-Chair MacKinnon agreed to communicate  with the board and                                                                    
the Governor's Office.                                                                                                          
Senator Micciche  felt that  it did  not fit  initially, but                                                                    
wondered  whether  the  paragraph   referred  to  a  current                                                                    
Co-Chair MacKinnon agreed to reexamine an issue.                                                                                
Senator  Stevens  felt that  Mr.  Powers  was qualified.  He                                                                    
wondered whether  Mr. Powers  left the  Board of  Regents on                                                                    
May 2016. Mr. Powers replied in the affirmative.                                                                                
Senator Stevens felt  that the appointment may  need to wait                                                                    
until May.                                                                                                                      
Vice-Chair  Bishop asked  that  Ms. Boerner  be  put on  the                                                                    
9:15:11 AM                                                                                                                    
VERNE  BOERNER,   APPOINTEE,  ALASKA  MENTAL   HEALTH  TRUST                                                                    
AUTHORITY,   ANCHORAGE   (via  teleconference),   introduced                                                                    
herself. Shared  her earliest memory. Her  specific interest                                                                    
came from the tribes and  tribal leaders. She announced that                                                                    
she was the  president and CEO for the  Alaska Native Health                                                                    
Board,  which  was  the statewide  voice  on  Alaska  Native                                                                    
health issues.                                                                                                                  
9:22:01 AM                                                                                                                    
Senator Micciche reviewed the resume,  and noted that it was                                                                    
interesting  that   the  Master's   thesis  was   on  health                                                                    
disparities. He  wondered whether  the Alaska  Mental Health                                                                    
Trust Authority (AMHTA) had  Alaska Native representation in                                                                    
the past. Ms.  Boerner replied that there  was Alaska Native                                                                    
in the  past, and currently had  a member on the  board. She                                                                    
stated that it was limited,  and the experience had not been                                                                    
tied to the Alaska Tribal Health system.                                                                                        
Co-Chair MacKinnon  noted the purpose of  the authority. She                                                                    
noted  that one  of the  qualifications was  the ability  in                                                                    
financial  management and  investment;  or land  management.                                                                    
She  noted that  there  could be  assistance  in the  mental                                                                    
health and health  side of the trust. She  queried skills in                                                                    
those  managements. Ms.  Boerner  replied that  she was  the                                                                    
administrative officer  for a board who  was responsible for                                                                    
negotiating lease and contract agreements.                                                                                      
9:26:22 AM                                                                                                                    
Vice-Chair Bishop was impressed  with the resume. He queried                                                                    
best practices from  the lower 48. Ms.  Boerner replied that                                                                    
the Alaska Tribal Health system was extremely advanced.                                                                         
Co-Chair  MacKinnon asked  the  Mr. Powers  answer the  same                                                                    
questions about financial management.                                                                                           
9:29:53 AM                                                                                                                    
AT EASE                                                                                                                         
9:33:16 AM                                                                                                                    
9:33:47 AM                                                                                                                    
Co-Chair  MacKinnon asked  for information  about experience                                                                    
with financial management. Mr. Powers  stated that he served                                                                    
10 years  as CFO and 20  years as CEO of  Fairbanks Memorial                                                                    
hospital.   He   dealt   with   extensive   audits,   public                                                                    
accountability, clinical safety, and regulatory reviews.                                                                        
Co-Chair  MacKinnon  announced that  there  was  a need  for                                                                    
additional legal review of the  limitations. She stated that                                                                    
his name  needed to  be set  aside, because  there may  be a                                                                    
hurdle within state  statute.  Mr. Powers  clarified that he                                                                    
officially stepped down in August 2016.                                                                                         
Co-Chair   MacKinnon  announced   that  the   committee  had                                                                    
established that.                                                                                                               
9:37:45 AM                                                                                                                    
Vice-Chair  Bishop   felt  that   there  were   many  direct                                                                    
involvement of  the large capital projects  in the hospital.                                                                    
Mr. Powers replied in the affirmative.                                                                                          
Co-Chair  MacKinnon  stated that  there  would  be a  formal                                                                    
legal  request  to  review the  qualifications.  Mr.  Powers                                                                    
replied that he understood.                                                                                                     
9:39:25 AM                                                                                                                    
Vice-Chair Bishop moved to advance  Verne Boerner to a Joint                                                                    
Legislative Session for consideration  for the Alaska Mental                                                                    
Health Trust Authority (AMHTA) Board of Trustees.                                                                               
9:39:51 AM                                                                                                                    
AT EASE                                                                                                                         
9:42:03 AM                                                                                                                    
^APPOINTMENT: REGULATORY COMMISSION OF ALASKA                                                                                 
9:43:48 AM                                                                                                                    
JANIS  WILSON, APPOINTEE,  REGULATORY COMMISSION  OF ALASKA,                                                                    
ANCHORAGE     (via     teleconference),    discussed     her                                                                    
qualifications. She stated that  most of her work experience                                                                    
was with the Regulatory  Commission of Alaska, therefore she                                                                    
would  provide significant  institutional  knowledge for  an                                                                    
agency with a recent high personnel turnover.                                                                                   
Co-Chair  MacKinnon noted  that the  reappointment would  be                                                                    
March 2018.                                                                                                                     
Senator  Micciche   felt  that  Ms.  Wilson   was  extremely                                                                    
qualified. He  noted that she  had been  regulating pipeline                                                                    
for 38 years in the state.                                                                                                      
Vice-Chair Bishop agreed.                                                                                                       
9:46:21 AM                                                                                                                    
Co-Chair MacKinnon queried comments  on providing lower cost                                                                    
energy in  rural Alaska.  Ms. Wilson replied  that it  was a                                                                    
difficult issue,  because of the cost  of transporting fuel.                                                                    
She could not provide further information on that issue.                                                                        
Co-Chair MacKinnon  queried a position on  the regulation of                                                                    
the  smaller   utilities.  Ms.   Wilson  replied   that  the                                                                    
Regulatory Commission of Alaska  did not currently municipal                                                                    
or  cooperative   utilities.  She  noted  that   many  rural                                                                    
locations were  not regulated  by the  Regulatory Commission                                                                    
of Alaska.                                                                                                                      
Co-Chair MacKinnon  wondered whether the lack  of regulation                                                                    
was contributing  to the higher  cost, or a function  of the                                                                    
delivery  of the  fuel source.  Ms. Wilson  did not  believe                                                                    
that the  lack of regulation  contributing to the  cost. She                                                                    
felt  that the  lack  of regulation  would  limit the  cost,                                                                    
because there was a cost to regulation.                                                                                         
9:49:36 AM                                                                                                                    
PAUL  LISANKIE, APPOINTEE,  REGULATORY COMMISSION  OF ALASKA                                                                    
(via  teleconference),  discussed   his  qualifications.  He                                                                    
stated that  he was  appointed of the  remainder of  the six                                                                    
year term.                                                                                                                      
Co-Chair MacKinnon queried thoughts  on the high energy cost                                                                    
in  rural Alaska.  Mr. Lisankie  stressed that  the cost  of                                                                    
regulation was an important factor.  He noted that the small                                                                    
communities  ability  to  respond  to  regulation  would  be                                                                    
Vice-Chair Bishop  MOVED to ADVANCE the  names, Janis Wilson                                                                    
and  Paul  Lisankie  to  a  Joint  Legislative  Session  for                                                                    
consideration  of appointment  to the  Regulatory Commission                                                                    
of Alaska.                                                                                                                      
9:55:29 AM                                                                                                                    
AT EASE                                                                                                                         
9:57:28 AM                                                                                                                    
Co-Chair MacKinnon discussed the following day's agenda.                                                                        
9:58:13 AM                                                                                                                    
The meeting was adjourned at 9:58 a.m.                                                                                          

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
2018 AMHTA Board.pdf SFIN 3/7/2018 9:00:00 AM
Confirmations 2018
2018 RCA Board.pdf SFIN 3/7/2018 9:00:00 AM
Confirmations 2018
Confirmations 2018
Confirmation 2018
Confirmations 2018
Confirmations 2018