Legislature(1993 - 1994)
01/19/1994 01:34 PM HES
* first hearing in first committee of referral
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
SENATE HEALTH, EDUCATION AND SOCIAL SERVICES COMMITTEE January 19, 1994 1:34 p.m. MEMBERS PRESENT Senator Steve Rieger, Chairman Senator Bert Sharp, Vice-Chairman Senator Loren Leman Senator Mike Miller Senator Jim Duncan Senator Johnny Ellis Senator Judy Salo MEMBERS ABSENT NONE COMMITTEE CALENDAR SENATE BILL NO. 221 "An Act relating to arrest of a person for illegal possession, consumption, or control of alcohol; and providing for an effective date." HOUSE BILL NO. 122 "An Act eliminating a requirement that a court consider the findings and recommendations of a neutral mediator when awarding shared child custody." CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 214(JUD) "An Act allowing the parent or legal guardian of a minor to disclose information about the minor to certain state officials and state employees; prohibiting further disclosure of the information to unauthorized persons; amending Alaska Child in Need of Aid Rule 22; and providing for an effective date." CS FOR HOUSE JOINT RESOLUTION NO. 36(HES) Urging the federal Department of Health and Human Services to repeal the "100-hour rule" relating to employment of certain persons receiving AFDC and to replace it with a regulation that will serve as an incentive for AFDC recipients to accept employment of more than 100 hours a month. PREVIOUS SENATE COMMITTEE ACTION SB 221 - No previous action to record. HB 122 - No previous action to record. HB 214 - No previous action to record. HJR 36 - No previous action to record. WITNESS REGISTER Joe Ambrose Staff to Senator Taylor State Capitol Juneau, Alaska 99801-1182 POSITION STATEMENT: Reviewed SB 221. Dan Anslinger Ketchikan Police Department 361 Main Street Ketchikan, Alaska 99901 POSITION STATEMENT: Supported SB 221. Juanita Hensley Chief, Driver Services Division of Motor Vehicles Department of Public Safety P.O. Box 20020 Juneau, Alaska 99802-0020 POSITION STATEMENT: Offered information. Sergeant Randy Crawford Division of Alaska State Troopers Department of Public Safety 5700 E. Tudor Road Anchorage, Alaska 99507-1225 POSITION STATEMENT: Supported SB 221. Jeanneane Henry 3812 Baranof Ketchikan, Alaska 99901 POSITION STATEMENT: Supported SB 221. Duncan Fowler State Ombudsman Box 113000 Juneau, Alaska 99811-3000 POSITION STATEMENT: Supported HB 214. Kathy Tibbles Division of Family and Youth Services Box 110630 Juneau, Alaska 99811-0630 POSITION STATEMENT: Supported HB 214. Chris Christensen Staff Counsel Alaska Court System 303 K Street Anchorage, Alaska 99501-2084 POSITION STATEMENT: Reviewed HB 122. Elmer Lindstrom Special Assistant Department of Health and Social Services Juneau, Alaska POSITION STATEMENT: Supported HJR 36. Representative Tom Brice Prime Sponsor of HJR 36 State Capitol Juneau, Alaska 99801-1182 POSITION STATEMENT: Supported HJR 36. ACTION NARRATIVE TAPE 94-1, SIDE A Number 001 CHAIRMAN RIEGER called the Senate Health, Education and Social Services (HESS) Committee to order at 1:34 p.m. CHAIRMAN RIEGER introduced SB 221 (ARREST OF MINORS FOR CONSUMING ALCOHOL) as the first order of business. Number 020 JOE AMBROSE, staff to Senator Taylor, gave an overview of the history of SB 221. He stated that the bill is more about protecting minors rather than prosecuting them. SB 221 as drafted amends the list of crimes for which police can make warrantless arrests to include minors consuming. CHAIRMAN RIEGER asked what was the difference between a warrantless and a non-warrantless arrest. Mr. Ambrose said that SB 221 allows for immediate arrest, a non-warrantless arrest. Number 088 DAN ANSLINGER, Chief of the Ketchikan Police Department testifying from Ketchikan, cited statistics on juvenile alcohol consumption. He described the present procedures followed by the Ketchikan Police Department. SB 221 will provide consistent treatment throughout the state. In general, the standard for arrest without a warrant is based on probable cause. He supported SB 221. JUANITA HENSLEY, Department of Public Safety, was present to answer questions. Number 165 SENATOR SALO asked what is a citation versus taking a minor into custody. She also asked what is the standard procedure when a minor is taken into custody for consuming. SERGEANT RANDY CRAWFORD, Division of State Troopers, Department of Public Safety testifying from Anchorage, said that a citation is a uniform summons for a judicial appearance. Sergeant Crawford cited that a citation is most typically given in a drinking episode that has not gotten out of control or does not result in criminal activity. He stated the Anchorage Department's support of SB 221. Number 215 SENATOR ELLIS asked what is the existing law and current practice when dealing with an illegal drug other than alcohol. Public Safety stated that when minors are under the influence they are basically treated the same. Senator Ellis requested the presence of the Department of Law to discuss the Superior Court decisions. Number 263 JEANNEANE HENRY,a twenty year Alaskan resident testifying from Ketchikan, noted that in the summer, 98 percent of Ketchikan youth consume alcohol. She said that the current law is enabling youths to consume alcohol. She supported SB 221. CHAIRMAN RIEGER moved SB 221 to the bottom of the calendar. Number 290 CHAIRMAN RIEGER brought HB 214 (DISCLOSURE OF MINOR'S RECORDS BY PARENT) before the committee. Number 303 DUNCAN FOWLER, State Ombudsman, supported HB 214. He indicated that HB 214 is a common sense bill. SENATOR ELLIS asked if HB 214 would create any complications with the duties of the Division of Family and Youth Services (DFYS) and what is standard in other states. KATHY TIBBLES, Social Service Program Officer for DFYS, said that HB 214 would have no impact on DFYS duties; furthermore, HB 214 would not jeopardize federal funding. She stated support for HB 214. SENATOR MILLER moved that CSHB 214 (JUD) be moved out of Senate HESS committee with individual recommendations. Hearing no objections it was so ordered. Number 360 CHAIRMAN RIEGER brought HB 122 (CHILD CUSTODY PROCEDURES) before the committee. CHRIS CHRISTENSEN, General Counsel to the Judicial Branch, informed the committee that HB 122 is a non-controversial, technical change. HB 122 deletes from the statute the requirement that the findings and recommendations of a neutral mediator be considered by a court. CHAIRMAN RIEGER asked if the court is allowed to receive input from an arbitrator although it's not specifically referenced in statute. Mr. Christensen said that he did not believe the current arbitration statutes were applicable to family law area. SENATOR SALO questioned if the remaining list is adequate without misreading of the mediator as an arbitrator. Mr. Christensen pointed out that according to statute, the judge is to base decisions of custody on the best interest of the child. Many factors are taken into consideration when determining the best interest of the child. SENATOR ELLIS asked if the Alaska Family Support Group, MADD, or DADD have a position on HB 122. Mr. Christensen implied that they had no opposition due to no complaints from these groups. SENATOR MILLER moved that HB 122 be moved out of Senate HESS committee with individual recommendations. Hearing no objections, it was so ordered. Number 420 CHAIRMAN RIEGER introduced HJR 36 (REPEAL OF 100-HOUR RULE FOR AFDC DC PROGRAMS) as the next order of business before the committee. ELMER LINDSTROM, Special Assistant in the Department of Health and Social Services (DHSS), stated that the department, specifically the Division of Public Assistance, supports HJR 36 in its current form. He noted that HJR 36 is consistent with other activities that DHSS and the Governor have undertaken in support of eliminating the 100-Hour Rule. REPRESENTATIVE BRICE, the primary sponsor, cited welfare reform as a savings of state money. He expressed the need to find ways to humanely transfer people off AFDC to become self-sufficient. In answer to Senator Leman, Representative Brice clarified that "remaining eligible" means remaining eligible for benefits for participation at the appropriate level. Number 466 SENATOR LEMAN referred to page 2 line 10 of the bill when asking if the program has an offsetting scale which would partially decrease the welfare benefit if the recipient is working a certain number of hours. ELMER LINDSTROM explained that this is a problem only for AFDC when both parents in the family are present, the AFDC Unemployed Parent portion. The one parent family situation is not covered in this bill. Currently, if one works more than 100 hours they receive no AFDC support. Elimination of the 100-Hour Program would allow people to take a lower paying job with the expectation of moving off welfare eventually while maintaining a reduced level of AFDC support. He said this could result in savings for the program. Mr. Lindstrom, in response to Senator Sharp, stated that AFDC is an income-needs based program, therefore assistance is dependent upon income and other resources of the recipient. SENATOR ELLIS referred to the welfare reform of three years ago; the federal law did not allow a one for one scheme working the person off public assistance. A one for one scheme reduces public assistance according to earnings, dollar for dollar. He cited the prohibition of persons with accumulated resources from public assistance as another disincentive of getting off welfare. He emphasized that the greatest disincentive of getting off welfare is the lack of health insurance in entry level jobs. Number 530 SENATOR MILLER moved that CSHJR 36 (HESS) be moved out of the Senate HESS committee with individual recommendations. Hearing no objections, it was so ordered. CHAIRMAN RIEGER held SB 221 until the Monday meeting when the Department of Law should be present. Number 540 There being no further business to come before the committee, Chairman Rieger adjourned the Senate HESS committee at 2:15 p.m.