Legislature(1995 - 1996)

04/12/1995 09:10 AM HES

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
txt
    SENATE HEALTH, EDUCATION AND SOCIAL SERVICES COMMITTEE                     
                         April 12, 1995                                        
                           9:10 a.m.                                           
                                                                               
  MEMBERS PRESENT                                                              
                                                                               
 Senator Lyda Green, Chairman                                                  
 Senator Loren Leman, Vice-Chairman                                            
 Senator Mike Miller                                                           
 Senator Johnny Ellis                                                          
 Senator Judy Salo                                                             
                                                                               
  MEMBERS ABSENT                                                               
                                                                               
 All members present.                                                          
                                                                               
  COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                           
                                                                               
 SENATE BILL NO. 115                                                           
 "An Act relating to the establishment, modification, and                      
 enforcement of support orders and the determination of parentage in           
 situations involving more than one state; amending Alaska Rule of             
 Administration 9; amending Alaska Rules of Civil Procedure 79 and             
 82; and providing for an effective date."                                     
                                                                               
 SENATE BILL NO. 116                                                           
 "An Act relating to administrative establishment of paternity and             
 establishing paternity by affidavit; relating to child support                
 enforcement; and providing for an effective date."                            
                                                                               
 SENATE BILL NO. 137                                                           
 "An Act relating to retirement incentive programs for the public              
 employees' retirement system and the teachers' retirement system;             
 relating to separation incentives for certain state employees; and            
 providing for an effective date."                                             
                                                                               
                                                                               
 SB 138 (TUBERCULOSIS CONTROL) was scheduled, but not taken up this            
 date.                                                                         
                                                                               
  PREVIOUS SENATE COMMITTEE ACTION                                             
                                                                               
 SB 115 - No previous action to record.                                        
                                                                               
 SB 116 - No previous action to record.                                        
                                                                               
 SB 137 - No previous action to record.                                        
                                                                               
 SB 138 - No previous action to record.                                        
                                                                               
  WITNESS REGISTER                                                             
                                                                               
 Glenda Straube, Director                                                      
 Child Support Enforcement Division                                            
 Department of Revenue                                                         
 500 W 7th Avenue, Suite 410                                                   
 Anchorage, Alaska 99501                                                       
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Discussed SB 115 and SB 116.                             
                                                                               
 Art Peterson                                                                  
 Uniform Law Commissioner for Alaska                                           
 350 N. Franklin                                                               
 Juneau, Alaska 99801                                                          
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Discussed how UIFSA evolved and pointed out              
                      the importance of SB 115.                                
                                                                               
 Marilyn May, Assistant                                                        
 Attorney General's Office                                                     
 Child Support Enforcement Division                                            
 1031 W 4th, No 200                                                            
 Anchorage, Alaska 99501                                                       
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Reiterated the importance of eliminating                 
                      multiple court order in SB 115.  Offered                 
                      information regarding back arrears of child              
                      support in relation to SB 116.                           
                                                                               
 Joan Connors                                                                  
 Office of the Ombudsman                                                       
 333 W 4th, No 305                                                             
 Anchorage, Alaska 99501                                                       
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Offered information.                                     
                                                                               
 Stuart Hall, Ombudsman                                                        
 PO Box 113000                                                                 
 Juneau, Alaska 99811-3000                                                     
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Stated support for SB 115 from the Office of             
                      the Ombudsman.                                           
                                                                               
 Bea Hagen, Deputy Ombudsman                                                   
 250 Cushman Street                                                            
 Fairbanks, Alaska 99707                                                       
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Discussed the importance of direct wage                  
                      withholding.                                             
                                                                               
 Art Snowden, Administrative Director                                          
 Alaska Court System                                                           
 303 K Street                                                                  
 Anchorage, Alaska 99501-2084                                                  
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Supported SB 115.                                        
                                                                               
 Rebecca Eames, Chief                                                          
 Field Operations                                                              
 Division of Public Assistance                                                 
 Department of Health & Social Services                                        
 PO Box 240249                                                                 
 Anchorage, Alaska 99524-0249                                                  
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Clarified confusion regarding the amount of              
                      child support received by an AFDC family.                
                                                                               
 Rick Krueger                                                                  
 PO Box 8172                                                                   
 Ketchikan, Alaska 99901                                                       
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Related his personal experience with CSED.               
                                                                               
 Al Zangri, Chief                                                              
 Bureau of Vital Statistics                                                    
 Department of Health & Social Services                                        
 PO Box 110675                                                                 
 Juneau, Alaska 99811-0675                                                     
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Supported SB 116.                                        
                                                                               
 Annalee McConnell, Director                                                   
 Office of Management & Budget                                                 
 Office of the Governor                                                        
 PO Box 110020                                                                 
 Juneau, Alaska 99811-0020                                                     
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Discussed the RIP process under SB 137 and its           
                     projected savings.                                        
                                                                               
 Bob Stalnaker, Director                                                       
 Division of Retirement & Benefits                                             
 Department of Administration                                                  
 PO Box 110203                                                                 
 Juneau, Alaska 99811-0203                                                     
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Discussed the pay ranges of state positions.             
                                                                               
 Carolyn Floyd, Mayor                                                          
 City of Kodiak                                                                
 PO Box 84                                                                     
 Kodiak, Alaska 99615                                                          
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Suggested an amendment to SB 137.                        
                                                                               
 Val Koeberlein, Finance Director                                              
 City of Homer                                                                 
 491 E Pioneer Avenue                                                          
 Homer, Alaska 99603                                                           
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Agreed with Ms. Floyd's statements.                      
                                                                               
 Claudia Douglas                                                               
 National Education Association-Alaska                                         
 114 Seward Street                                                             
 Juneau, Alaska                                                                
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Supported SB 137.                                        
                                                                               
 Richard Barlow                                                                
 Mat-Su School Employees                                                       
 HCO 2 Box 7550 A-Z                                                            
 Palmer, Alaska                                                                
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Supported SB 137.                                        
                                                                               
 Bill Munroe                                                                   
 Classified Employee of Mat-Su                                                 
 2950 Mariann's Place                                                          
 Wasilla, Alaska 99654                                                         
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Supported SB 137.                                        
                                                                               
 Maryjane Murphy                                                               
 University of Alaska                                                          
 PO Box 3185                                                                   
 Homer, Alaska 99603                                                           
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Supported SB 137.                                        
                                                                               
 Michael Daugherty                                                             
 City of Homer                                                                 
 4060 Heath Street                                                             
 Homer, Alaska 99603                                                           
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Supported SB 137.                                        
                                                                               
 Gary Bloomquist                                                               
 City of Kodiak                                                                
 PO Box 1397                                                                   
 Kodiak, Alaska 99615                                                          
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Supported SB 137.                                        
                                                                               
 Corky McCorkle                                                                
 PO Box 1397                                                                   
 Kodiak, Alaska 99615                                                          
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Supported SB 137.                                        
                                                                               
 Karen Pennington                                                              
 PO Box 5766                                                                   
 Ketchikan, Alaska 99901                                                       
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Supported SB 137.                                        
                                                                               
 Mike Haddix                                                                   
 83 Mt. Ash Heights                                                            
 Ketchikan, Alaska 99901                                                       
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Supported SB 137.                                        
                                                                               
 Dale Robbins                                                                  
 3710 Hillside Road                                                            
 Ketchikan, Alaska 99901                                                       
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Supported SB 137.                                        
                                                                               
 Jackie Kline                                                                  
 PO Box 895                                                                    
 Valdez, Alaska 99686                                                          
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Supported SB 137.                                        
                                                                               
 Jim Chambers, KPCLC                                                           
 PO Box 3386                                                                   
 Soldotna, Alaska 99669                                                        
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Supported SB 137.                                        
                                                                               
 Carol Baldridge                                                               
 Department of Motor Vehicles                                                  
 PO Box 3773                                                                   
 Soldotna, Alaska 99669                                                        
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Supported SB 137.                                        
                                                                               
 Chris Rankin, FWP                                                             
 PO Box 2745                                                                   
 Soldotna, Alaska 99669                                                        
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Supported SB 137.                                        
                                                                               
 Lucy Hope                                                                     
 PO Box 870887                                                                 
 Wasilla, Alaska 99687                                                         
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Supported SB 137.                                        
                                                                               
  ACTION NARRATIVE                                                             
                                                                               
 TAPE 95-30, SIDE A                                                            
                                                                               
         SB 115 UNIFORM INTERSTATE FAMILY SUPPORT ACT                        
                                                                               
 Number 002                                                                    
                                                                               
 CHAIRMAN GREEN called the Senate Health, Education and Social                 
 Services (HESS) Committee to order at 9:10 a.m. and introduced                
 SB 115  as the first order of business before the committee.                  
                                                                               
 GLENDA STRAUBE, Director of the Child Support Enforcement Division            
 (CSED), informed the committee that the Administration has                    
 identified as a priority, a welfare package which is cost                     
 effective, equitable, and ensures that the needs of children are              
 met.  Child support is a critical portion of welfare reform.  SB              
 115 addresses interstate collections which are the most difficult             
 cases in which to collect.  She noted that interstate collections             
 comprises 44 percent of the division's caseload.  She said that               
 most non-custodial parents know that crossing state lines is the              
 best manner in which to avoid supporting their children.  The                 
 federal government has recognized this and the Uniform Interstate             
 Family Support Act (UIFSA) has already been passed by approximately           
 21 states.  Most other states will be passing UIFSA this session.             
                                                                               
 SB 115 provides a tool to collect in those interstate cases as well           
 as minimizing the confusion with multiple orders.  Ms. Straube                
 explained that SB 115 would end multiple state orders; the bill               
 defines a continuing exclusive jurisdiction state.  The bill also             
 provides a long arm jurisdiction allowing the division to reach               
 out-of-state obligors.  SB 115 would allow administrative actions             
 in paternity modifications and enforcement of child support orders.           
 In response to Chairman Green, Ms. Straube explained that often the           
 courts have to be involved in particular, when the support order              
 comes from the court.  She commented that some states must have               
 everything go through the court.  Any time there are modifications            
 to an order which was originally established through the court,               
 those modifications must also go through the court; the court has             
 a tremendous backlog.                                                         
                                                                               
 Ms. Straube explained that CSED uses the same guidelines and rules            
 as the court which is why SB 115 would allow administrative actions           
 in paternity modifications and enforcement of child support orders.           
 Usually when someone is out-of-state, the income withholding takes            
 time and often many individuals have moved on to another job.                 
 SB 115 would allow direct income withholding.  She noted that there           
 is a portion of the bill which deals with federal forms, computer             
 networks, and others which are all aspects of efficiency.  The                
 elimination of the multiple orders alone is reason enough to pass             
 SB 115.  Ms. Straube predicted that CSED would increase their                 
 collections by approximately $170,000.                                        
                                                                               
 Number 119                                                                    
                                                                               
 SENATOR LEMAN asked if SB 115 was the same bill that was before the           
 legislature last year and if so, what happened with that bill.                
 GLENDA STRAUBE said that last year's bill did not pass.                       
                                                                               
 ART PETERSON, Attorney with Dylan and Finley, informed everyone               
 that he was appearing in his capacity as a Uniform Law Commissioner           
 for Alaska.  In response to Senator Leman, SB 115 is the same bill            
 as last year's with a few technical changes.  That bill of last               
 year was stuck in committee due to other matters that seemed of               
 higher priority and the bill was never heard again.                           
                                                                               
 SENATOR LEMAN inquired as to the significance of the technical                
 changes to the bill; would this create difficulties when applied              
 nationally?  ART PETERSON said that if everyone begins from the               
 same base.  For example, Alaska has certain drafting requirements             
 which are non-substantive and would not create a significant                  
 deviation from the national version.  Other states have similar               
 requirements.  The greatest degree of uniformity is always                    
 attempted in order to achieve the interstate benefit from these               
 acts.  SB 115 is practically identical to the national version.               
 Mr. Peterson noted a slight difference in the definition of state             
 which does not specifically refer to Indian tribes however, that              
 issue could be dealt with in other ways.  The Chair of the drafting           
 committee of the Uniform Laws Conference indicated that the                   
 difference in definition is not a significant deviation that should           
 hold up the act.                                                              
                                                                               
 GLENDA STRAUBE pointed out that the federal government has asked              
 states to pass this act and the Congressional House of                        
 Representatives has passed out their welfare reform legislation,              
 including child support.  With that passage, UIFSA is being                   
 mandated.                                                                     
                                                                               
 Number 184                                                                    
                                                                               
 ART PETERSON informed the committee that the drafting committee of            
 the National Conference began work on this issue due to the                   
 Congressional action of 1975, 1984, and 1988.  The National                   
 Conference addressed support guidelines, enforcement procedures,              
 wage withholding, tax intercepts, and credit reporting which are              
 all federally required.  As the drafting committee worked on the              
 project, the need for a comprehensive revision of the Uniform                 
 Reciprocal Enforcement of Support Act (URESA) became more apparent.           
 Every state and jurisdiction has adopted URESA; now they would all            
 be adopting UIFSA.  The main beneficiaries of the adoption of UIFSA           
 would be the children.  Mr. Peterson noted that the system would be           
 less confusing, more efficient, and most importantly there would              
 less conflicting court orders.  Multiple court orders has been a              
 major problem under URESA.  SB 115 assures that a court which                 
 obtains jurisdiction would keep that jurisdiction.  The more                  
 efficient system should benefit the government agencies.                      
                                                                               
 With regards to Mr. Peterson's statement that the children would              
 benefit, SENATOR LEMAN asked if the children would actually receive           
 more money or would this be a timing issue?  ART PETERSON explained           
 that typically the amount owed by the debtor parent is                        
 substantially more than AFDC receipts.  Therefore, the child would            
 benefit and benefit earlier without the uncertainty of the current            
 system.                                                                       
                                                                               
 SENATOR LEMAN noted that the fiscal notes are prepared with regards           
 to the bill's impact on the state.  There is probably a cash flow             
 that far exceeds the amount designated in the fiscal note that                
 would be a benefit to children.                                               
                                                                               
 GLENDA STRAUBE explained that the fiscal note shows the money that            
 would come back to AFDC, but the fiscal note does not illustrate              
 the money returned to the children.  In response to Senator Leman,            
 Ms. Straube said that half of CSED's cases are AFDC which would               
 assume that the other half would be a similar amount.                         
                                                                               
 Number 253                                                                    
                                                                               
 MARILYN MAY, Assistant Attorney General for the State of Alaska               
 representing CSED, informed the committee that she had assisted in            
 the drafting of SB 115.  She reiterated the importance of                     
 eliminating multiple orders with UIFSA.  Under UIFSA, one state               
 would have continuing exclusive jurisdiction.  UIFSA also sets                
 forth the rules determining which state has the continuing                    
 exclusive jurisdiction.  Furthermore if an obligor moves to another           
 state, the new state can only enforce the order while the original            
 issuing state still has the continuing exclusive jurisdiction.  She           
 reiterated that this bill would eliminate much time and confusion             
 expended in dealing with multiple orders.  SB 115 would up date the           
 current situation of the law regarding child support.                         
                                                                               
 SENATOR SALO inquired as to the degree that UIFSA would deal with             
 custody determinations.  MARILYN MAY informed Senator Salo that               
 UIFSA deals strictly with child support and spousal support, UIFSA            
 does not deal with custody determinations at all.                             
                                                                               
 SENATOR SALO asked how the state of jurisdiction portion of SB 115            
 would affect the Laura Bach case.  MARILYN MAY was not familiar               
 with the child support aspects of the Laura Bach case.  That case             
 had conflicting multiple court orders from multiple states; that              
 type of situation in a child support setting would be eliminated              
 under UIFSA.                                                                  
                                                                               
 SENATOR SALO asked if knowing which state has jurisdiction during             
 custody battles was an issue.  GLENDA STRAUBE replied yes, there is           
 similar confusion across state lines with custody battles as well             
 as child support matters.                                                     
                                                                               
 SENATOR SALO inquired as to why that issue had not been dealt with            
 nationally.  ART PETERSON mentioned that the National Conference is           
 currently working on a project to revise the Uniform Child Custody            
 Jurisdiction Act which should be completed in 1996.                           
                                                                               
 In regards to Senator Leman's earlier question, GLENDA STRAUBE                
 explained that the division would collect $340,000 total, of which            
 half would go to the state.  Ms. Straube assumed that if half of              
 the cases were AFDC, then approximately $340,000 goes to the                  
 children because that amount would match the AFDC amount.                     
                                                                               
 SENATOR LEMAN pointed out that the amount was actually $680,000 per           
 year, but this fist year is half the fiscal year.                             
                                                                               
 CHAIRMAN GREEN commented on the potential for the system to become            
 more efficient.                                                               
                                                                               
 JOAN CONNORS, from the Ombudsman's Office, said that Stuart Hall is           
 in Juneau with introductory comments.                                         
                                                                               
 Number 348                                                                    
                                                                               
 STUART HALL, Ombudsman, informed the committee that the Office of             
 the Ombudsman supported this legislation.  He noted that he had               
 addressed a letter to the committee on April 5th.  The enactment of           
 this legislation would assist many of those who have sought the               
 help of the Ombudsman regarding CSED.  From the fiscal year 1994 to           
 date, the Ombudsman has assisted approximately 1,661 individuals              
 with complaints against CSED with a significant portion of that               
 being custodial parents who rely on CSED to collect child support             
 from an out-of-state parent.  Mr. Hall emphasized that the                    
 enactment of UIFSA would streamline case establishment which would            
 result in quicker collections.  He urged passage of SB 115.                   
                                                                               
 BEA HAGEN, Deputy Ombudsman, emphasized the importance of direct              
 wage withholding in other states.  Many of the complaints received            
 in the Ombudsman's Office are regarding the lengthy time that CSED            
 takes with wage withholding.  Often this is not CSED's fault                  
 because the division cannot do this directly, the process can be              
 lengthy.  SB 115 would make direct wage withholding possible.                 
                                                                               
 ART SNOWDEN, Administrative Director of the Judicial Branch of                
 Government, stated support for this legislation from the Judiciary.           
 The multiple laws among states are complex and can lead to                    
 problems.  Furthermore, the Judiciary also agrees that the only               
 manner in which to change an order that has been imposed by a                 
 judicial officer is to return to court which increases the courts             
 work load.  The system in SB 115 would be fairest to all people.              
                                                                               
 SENATOR LEMAN moved that SB 115 be moved out of committee with                
 accompanying fiscal notes.  Hearing no objections, it was so                  
 ordered.                                                                      
                                                                               
                                                                               
         SB 116 PATERNITY; CHILD SUPPORT ENFORCEMENT                         
                                                                               
 Number 406                                                                    
                                                                               
 CHAIRMAN GREEN introduced  SB 116  as the next order of business              
 before the committee.                                                         
                                                                               
 GLENDA STRAUBE, CSED, stated that SB 116 would provide for the                
 administrative establishment for paternity.  Currently, all                   
 paternity cases must be handled by the Alaska Court System which is           
 backlogged.  CSED does the genetic work and identifies the punitive           
 father, then the case goes to the court.  Only after the case                 
 returns to CSED can the amount of money owed be determined and                
 collections received.  Paternity establishment must be determined             
 before collections can take place.                                            
                                                                               
 Ms. Straube pointed out that the federal regulations have changed             
 and in order for CSED to conform, CSED must establish 75 percent of           
 their orders in six months and 90 percent of their orders in 12               
 months.  She reiterated that in order to do the orders, paternity             
 must be established first.  Establishment of paternity alone could            
 take two and half to three years.  She commented that CSED is doing           
 other administrative things in an attempt to solve this problem.              
 Currently, the court portion of this could take up to six months.             
                                                                               
 Under SB 116, CSED would use the same standard as the court which             
 is already the case.  She explained that a case is not sent to the            
 court unless it meets the standards set forth in AS 25.20.050.                
 Those standards review if there has been a voluntary                          
 acknowledgement or if there is a 95 percent chance or better                  
 through the genetic test that the person is the father.  SB 116               
 would still allow due process with the option of judicial review.             
 Ms. Straube reiterated that this legislation would alleviate some             
 of the backlog in the courts.   She indicated that most people                
 would not use judicial review if CSED uses the same standards as              
 the court in the establishment of paternity.                                  
                                                                               
 Currently, there are 3,200 cases in progress regarding the                    
 establishment of paternity, approximately 70 percent of those cases           
 are AFDC cases.  SB 116 would eliminate at least six months of the            
 process and perhaps even more.  Ms. Straube asserted that CSED                
 would not be able to meet the federal standards unless this                   
 legislation is passed as well as many in-house and inter-                     
 governmental changes.                                                         
                                                                               
 Ms. Straube discussed a scenario in which a child born in wedlock             
 is the child of a third person who acknowledges that he is the                
 father; everyone agrees that the third person is the father.  By              
 law, CSED cannot accept those affidavits, only the court can accept           
 those.  Currently, those people would have to go to court and file            
 a paternity action.  SB 116 would allow CSED to take the word of              
 these three people through affidavit; there are other similar                 
 situations in which SB 116 would help.  Ms. Straube did not foresee           
 any problems with SB 116 nor the process.                                     
                                                                               
 SENATOR SALO inquired as to the definition of tribunal.  AL ZANGRI,           
 Chief of the Bureau of Vital Statistics for DHSS, directed the                
 committee to page 2, line 18 of the bill.                                     
                                                                               
 SENATOR SALO asked if the application of this referred to CSED.               
 GLENDA STRAUBE replied yes, CSED is the administrative agency; we             
 would be the tribunal.                                                        
                                                                               
 Number 481                                                                    
                                                                               
 SENATOR SALO expressed concern with the six month period in which             
 a case would sit in the court, but the two years in which it may              
 take to establish parentage would be of more concern.  What are               
 some of the things being done to deal with this problem?  GLENDA              
 STRAUBE stated that a portion of the governor's welfare reform                
 deals with co-location.  The goal is to place people in the public            
 assistance office during intake hours in order to do the affidavits           
 correctly as well as doing the genetic testing.  Doing an affidavit           
 through the mail could take up to six months.  Ms. Straube noted              
 that the Attorney General's Office is also making some changes to             
 expedite the process on their end.                                            
                                                                               
 CHAIRMAN GREEN asked if there would be any point in the process in            
 which a persons' rights would be infringed upon.  GLENDA STRAUBE              
 clarified that people would have the same rights that they                    
 currently do.  Currently, the process begins with an informal                 
 hearing and then a formal hearing and finally, if the person                  
 remains unsatisfied, they could go to court.                                  
                                                                               
 SENATOR SALO mentioned the possibility of the mother being                    
 unwilling to name the father; why would that be?  GLENDA STRAUBE              
 informed the committee that of the 3,200 paternity cases, 2,600 of            
 those have names of the father and 639 do not have the father's               
 name.  Of those 639 cases without names, 482 are AFDC cases.  In              
 her opinion, women do not name the father for reasons ranging from            
 fear to the desire to not have the father be a part of their life.            
 Some women do not feel the need to name the father at a particular            
 time.  Ms. Straube also proposed the psychology of protection as              
 another reason not to name the father.                                        
                                                                               
 SENATOR SALO commented that in all the reasons Ms. Straube had                
 cited the notion that women do not name the father of their                   
 children in order to receive more AFDC was not mentioned.  GLENDA             
 STRAUBE did not believe that a mother would collect more AFDC if              
 she did not name the father.  Ms. Straube explained that the family           
 receives the first $50 of any child support.  They would also                 
 receive anything over the grant.                                              
                                                                               
 REBECCA EAMES, representing the Division of Public Assistance,                
 clarified that if the child support exceeds the AFDC needs                    
 standard, then the mother would be denied AFDC.  If the amount of             
 the child support is less than the AFDC needs standard, the mother            
 would receive $50 and CSED would receive the remainder.                       
                                                                               
 Number 538                                                                    
                                                                               
 RICK KRUEGER, testifying from Fairbanks, related his personal                 
 experience in which he was notified that CSED was looking for him             
 in 1986.  He called CSED and was informed that a woman whom he had            
 not seen in seven years was claiming that he was the father of her            
 child.  He cooperated with CSED and filled out the paperwork.  CSED           
 said that they would contact Mr. Krueger regarding taking a blood             
 test.  Six years later, CSED is taking Mr. Krueger to court for six           
 years of arrears for child support and welfare which total $65,000.           
 He noted that the amount was reduced by half with the help of an              
 attorney.                                                                     
                                                                               
 Mr. Krueger said that CSED is currently taking half of his take               
 home pay for the arrears.  He explained that he did not have a                
 problem with paying the child support, but he felt that he should             
 only have to pay from the time he received the results of the blood           
 test.  He asserted that CSED recognized their fault in this manner,           
 but they did not care and wanted the arrears.  CSED is a                      
 bureaucracy that is out of control and it does not answer to                  
 anyone.  He noted that he had talked to various legislators and               
 there seems to be nothing that can be done.  Mr. Krueger expressed            
 frustration that his situation took six years when he remained in             
 the same state.  In conclusion, Mr. Krueger recommended the state             
 taking responsibility in a timely manner in 90 days.  If a mother             
 does not name a father when she applies for welfare, the mother               
 should not receive benefits.  The father should be named                      
 immediately.                                                                  
                                                                               
 CHAIRMAN GREEN asked Mr. Krueger if he was ever informed that he              
 had a child before CSED was in the matter.  RICK KRUEGER said he              
 was not and added that he is not on the birth certificate.                    
                                                                               
 CHAIRMAN GREEN recognized the concern with late notifications which           
 create large arrearage.  That type of situation does seem punitive            
 and unfair, but it is not necessarily the state's responsibility to           
 deal with this.                                                               
                                                                               
 SENATOR SALO pointed out that although one may sympathize with Mr.            
 Krueger, meanwhile someone is raising his child and it takes money            
 to do so.  The larger issue here is the care of the child which               
 should be the parents responsibility, but the state should be                 
 available for assistance if necessary.                                        
                                                                               
 GLENDA STRAUBE explained that the lengthy time in which someone               
 could be notified of their child is not in the purview of CSED, it            
 is part of federal regulations.  However, the amount of time                  
 between any blood test and the establishment of paternity, which SB           
 116 would help, as well as the time between the establishment of              
 paternity and their notification of the amount owed should be                 
 controlled.                                                                   
                                                                               
 SENATOR LEMAN said that it did not seem unfair to require the                 
 father to participate in raising their child, it is proper.                   
                                                                               
 TAPE 95-30, SIDE B                                                            
                                                                               
 Number 590                                                                    
                                                                               
 SENATOR LEMAN indicated that for a woman to name a father years               
 after the child has been born is unfair; the father has been denied           
 the opportunity to be a father for that time.  There should be a              
 reasonable amount of time to receive back collection, after that              
 time the back collection would not be possible.  Is there such a              
 limitation in federal or state law?  GLENDA STRAUBE did not know.             
                                                                               
 In response to Senator Leman, MARILYN MAY did not believe there was           
 a statute of limitations until after the emancipation of the child.           
 She noted that most courts have went back six years from the date             
 the paternity complaint was filed; collection of arrears are                  
 allowed that far back.  Ms. May did not believe there should be a             
 limitation.  When a man has unprotected sex it is his                         
 responsibility to know the consequences.  It is not appropriate to            
 penalize the child and the mother for the fact that the father did            
 not know and did not check the results of his action.                         
                                                                               
 SENATOR LEMAN said that he did not have a problem with the father             
 taking responsibility, but if the father is not informed of his               
 child that is another situation.  In this case, the father has lost           
 an opportunity to be a father, even a non-custodial father.  He               
 felt that the mother should take on some responsibility with                  
 regards to notifying the father of the child.  MARILYN MAY                    
 reiterated that in most cases the father is held for six years of             
 arrears prior to the time he was notified of the paternity                    
 complaint which seems to be the limitation for what the mother can            
 hold the father responsible.  Ms. May opposed the penalization of             
 the child, the loss of support of the child, because the mother had           
 waited a certain number of years to inform the father of his child.           
 Ms. May recognized the unfairness to which Senator Leman was                  
 speaking however, a greater unfairness would result if a father               
 could escape responsibility for a child entirely.                             
                                                                               
 GLENDA STRAUBE specified that these cases often happen because the            
 mother was not on AFDC when it occurred and paternity was not                 
 established at the time.  The problem begins when the mother goes             
 on AFDC, then CSED takes the case and the mother is required to               
 name the father.                                                              
                                                                               
 In response to Chairman Green, MARILYN MAY clarified that even in             
 a case without AFDC, a mother can apply for services and name an              
 alleged father and go through the paternity establishment process.            
 Ms. May did not know how far back the support award could go; the             
 courts have differed in the allowed arrears prior to the time the             
 mother requested services.                                                    
                                                                               
 Number 518                                                                    
                                                                               
 SENATOR SALO was confused because she thought there was a six year            
 back collection limit.  MARILYN MAY said that was true for cases              
 involving AFDC.  Ms. May explained that when a mother applies for             
 AFDC she is required to assign her right to collect child support             
 to the state, who requires the mother to name the father.  There              
 are no general requirements that a mother must name a father in               
 order to receive AFDC.  Ms. May pointed out that there is leverage            
 to make the mother name the father because she could be determined            
 by the court to be non-cooperative.  In an AFDC case, the state has           
 the right to the repayment of those benefits that were paid to the            
 mother which is why the courts would go back six years from the               
 claim made by the state.  Ms. May offered to check on the                     
 information regarding the court's stance in those cases that do not           
 involve AFDC.                                                                 
                                                                               
 GLENDA STRAUBE asserted that regardless of the issues that have               
 come up today, this bill would help establish paternity and notify            
 these people faster.                                                          
                                                                               
 SENATOR SALO said that the bill is a step in the right direction in           
 order to alleviate some of the court time involved and make the               
 establishment of paternity an easier process.  All the other issues           
 discussed are important to other pieces of legislation.                       
                                                                               
 In order to clarify for Chairman Green, GLENDA STRAUBE explained              
 that in AFDC cases back arrears can go back to six years, but in              
 non-AFDC cases the back arrears would depend upon the court.                  
 MARILYN MAY agreed and added that most of the courts have not went            
 back for arrears in non-AFDC cases.                                           
                                                                               
 CHAIRMAN GREEN asked if CSED and AFDC would go after the non-                 
 custodial parent on their own for fees that CSED or AFDC did not              
 have anything to do with paying in those years.  GLENDA STRAUBE               
 believed that CSED and AFDC would not.  Ms. Straube offered to get            
 that information to the committee members.  Ms. Straube emphasized            
 that issue does not change SB 116.                                            
                                                                               
 MARILYN MAY pointed out that administrative establishment of                  
 paternity would happen upon the advocation from a mother, custodian           
 or a legal custodian of the child or from the state.  The one                 
 person missing from that list would be the punitive father who is             
 presumed to be the father of the child by operation of law, if the            
 man and woman are married.  In some cases the husband wants                   
 paternity disestablished.  SB 116 would not allow for that type of            
 case, the bill only addresses the normal establishment of                     
 paternity.                                                                    
                                                                               
 SENATOR SALO concluded that such cases would remain in the purview            
 of the court.  MARILYN MAY said yes, this type of case does not               
 require an administrative establishment of paternity.  Such cases             
 could be done in court.                                                       
                                                                               
 Number 441                                                                    
                                                                               
 AL ZANGRI, Bureau of Vital Statistics for DHSS, stated that SB 116            
 focuses on two primary issues:  the three party affidavit and the             
 establishment of the administrative procedure for the establishment           
 of paternity.  The three party affidavits recognized are voluntary            
 establishments of paternity by everyone involved.  Currently in               
 statute, there are two party voluntary affidavits of paternity that           
 are being used.  He informed the committee that approximately 30              
 percent of the births in Alaska are to single mothers which means             
 that approximately 3,100 children have one named parent.                      
 Approximately 1,400 affidavits are processed in voluntary paternity           
 every year.  The remaining go through involuntary processes through           
 the court, SB 116 would allow CSED to utilize an administrative               
 procedure.                                                                    
                                                                               
 Mr. Zangri noted that the other dissatisfied clients would fall               
 under the three party affidavits.  Under current law, three party             
 affidavits cannot establish paternity.  Approximately 300 or 400              
 people are affected by three party affidavits.  By the time the               
 Bureau of Vital Statistics receives a call, the client is very                
 upset.  Often there is nothing that can be done.  When a man and a            
 woman remain married after many years of separation, if the woman             
 has a child by another man, the woman's husband must be placed on             
 the birth certificate and must be give parental rights although, he           
 is not the father.  The husband is legally the father of the child.           
 Mr. Zangri discussed various scenarios in which the biological                
 father is not legally recognized as such.  The bill would help                
 these situations.  The department supports SB 116.                            
                                                                               
 GLENDA STRAUBE informed the committee that she could have answers             
 to the committee's questions within an hour.                                  
                                                                               
 MARILYN MAY stated that CSED does not seek back payments prior to             
 the time of the paternity complaint in cases that do not involve              
 AFDC.  If there are cases in which the courts have went back with             
 arrears, then it is very rare and does not represent the norm.                
                                                                               
 GLENDA STRAUBE commented that the reason for that is that AFDC is             
 a federal regulation that CSED does not control.                              
                                                                               
 BEA HAGEN informed Mr. Krueger that could call the 800 number for             
 the Office of the Ombudsman in Anchorage since Fairbanks does not             
 have an office.                                                               
                                                                               
 SENATOR LEMAN moved that SB 116 be reported out of committee with             
 individual recommendations.  Hearing no objection, it was so                  
 ordered.                                                                      
                                                                               
 CHAIRMAN GREEN acknowledged that there were people present to                 
 testify on SB 137 who were from out of town.  She informed everyone           
 that SB 137 would probably not be completed today.  The committee             
 took an at ease from 10:19 a.m. to 10:20 a.m.                                 
                                                                               
                                                                               
             SB 137 RETIREMENT INCENTIVE PROGRAM                             
                                                                               
 Number 366                                                                    
                                                                               
 CHAIRMAN GREEN introduced  SB 137  as the next order of business              
 before the committee.                                                         
                                                                               
 SENATOR SALO noted that a good portion of SB 137 was in SB 132,               
 therefore, it might be more appropriate to focus on the portions of           
 SB 137 that are not in SB 132.  The portion of SB 137 that was not            
 present in SB 132 is the state employees participation in the                 
 program.  CHAIRMAN GREEN agreed.                                              
                                                                               
 SENATOR SALO felt that those who wanted to testify would possibly             
 forego their opportunity to testify if they knew that the committee           
 intended to pass the bill out of committee.                                   
                                                                               
 SENATOR MILLER said that he had an amendment which would authorize            
 the court system to include the executive director in the                     
 retirement incentives program (RIP).  This provision was in last              
 year's bill, although it is not in the governor's bill this year.             
 He understood that it was the intention of the Chair to move the              
 bill today.  Senator Miller moved that Amendment 1 be adopted.                
 Hearing no objection, Amendment 1 was adopted.                                
                                                                               
 SENATOR SALO reiterated that SB 132 was passed out of HESS last               
 week which included all the school district employees.  SB 137 is             
 essentially the same process of early retirement.  Perhaps, the               
 discussion today should focus on the state employees included in SB           
 137.  She noted that the only conflict with SB 137 would be                   
 regarding the possibility of the state saving money.                          
                                                                               
 Number 321                                                                    
                                                                               
 ANNALEE MCCONNELL, Director of the Office of Management & Budget              
 (OMB), emphasized that this retirement incentive program had been             
 developed differently than past RIPs in order to ensure saving                
 money and helping with the needed downsizing and restructuring.               
 One difference in this RIP is that it is not an across the board              
 program.  This RIP is only available if a department has determined           
 that its plans for restructuring, downsizing, and saving money can            
 be accomplished by using the RIP.  She explained that RIP would be            
 used in a strategic area with very stringent savings calculations.            
 The calculations would include employer costs, training costs, and            
 specialized equipment costs.                                                  
                                                                               
 Ms. McConnell differentiated between the two scenarios in which RIP           
 would be used.  The first scenario would involve a vacant position            
 due to downsizing.  She expected that type situation to utilize RIP           
 the most.  The savings in that case would be in eliminating the               
 position all together.  She clarified that OMB would eliminate the            
 vacant position in the following budget cycle.  Another scenario              
 would involve the replacement of a position, but the level of                 
 scrutiny would be extremely high in order to ensure real savings.             
 She ensured everyone that the costs taken into account would be               
 very comprehensive in order to have a true savings.  Another change           
 to tighten up the savings was to demonstrate the savings in a three           
 year period after the position was replaced versus the five year              
 period of past programs.  Ms. McConnell also pointed out that the             
 budget environment currently is very different than the budget                
 environment of prior RIP bills.  Furthermore, the need for                    
 management tools to accomplish downsizing has changed as well.                
                                                                               
 CHAIRMAN GREEN asked if there were many positions in state                    
 government that allow the range of the Department of Corrections in           
 which a position could start at a 11A range and move up to a 15J              
 range; are there some positions that simply begin at a certain                
 range that cannot be changed.  ANNALEE MCCONNELL did not know the             
 number of situations with the wide range in pay ranges.                       
                                                                               
 Number 234                                                                    
                                                                               
 BOB STALNAKER, Director of the Division of Retirement & Benefits              
 for the Department of Administration, explained that the majority             
 of state positions begin at a 15A going through the longevity step.           
 There are a lot of positions such as a Retirement Specialists who             
 begin as a Retirement Specialist 1 and moves up to a Retirement               
 Specialist 3.  He noted that moving up to Retirement Specialist 3             
 was gained by years of learning the systems and counseling.  There            
 are a lot of such positions which seem to be common to many                   
 departments in state government.  He stated that there was some               
 value to not tying the RIP to the elimination of a position, but              
 replacing the position with a lower paid person.                              
                                                                               
 SENATOR SALO agreed and explained that school districts save money            
 by replacing positions with a lower paid person.  She noted that              
 eventually, the new hire would move up to the higher range anyway.            
 Senator Salo pointed out that the scrutiny provision was missing              
 from the last bill.  She felt that the scrutiny provision improved            
 the bill.                                                                     
                                                                               
 SENATOR LEMAN commented that he had voted for a RIP bill in 1989,             
 after which he was not convinced that this program saved money.               
 This RIP is much better and will work if the commitment is honored.           
 He emphasized that the key to the success of the program is the               
 commitment to the program.  If a program can be designed and there            
 is commitment to it, then the program could work.  Senator Leman              
 would then support such a program.                                            
                                                                               
 ANNALEE MCCONNELL informed Senator Leman that with regards to her             
 commitment, she has had experience in saying "No".  She informed              
 the committee that she was the Director of Management & Budget in             
 Anchorage when the RIP bill came up in the late 1980s.  At that               
 time, Anchorage elected not to participate in the RIP.  She                   
 emphasized that she would not hesitate in saying no if a                      
 department's plan does not save money or the savings were too                 
 speculative.  She explained that since the majority of positions              
 would be eliminated under this RIP, the uncertainty is not so close           
 or speculative.                                                               
                                                                               
 Number 171                                                                    
                                                                               
 SENATOR LEMAN inquired as to the up front costs of RIPs which would           
 pose a concern.  BOB STALNAKER pointed out that SB 137 provides               
 that the employer must demonstrate savings.  The employer pays the            
 cost by virtue of that savings.  Mr. Stalnaker explained that if an           
 employer can show a savings over three years by utilizing RIP, then           
 those costs can be paid over the same three years.  There is no               
 front loading; the agencies must maintain within the approved                 
 budget.  The agencies must take a portion of their savings to pay             
 the RIP costs before the person qualifies.                                    
                                                                               
 CHAIRMAN GREEN stated that she intended to move SB 137 out of                 
 committee today.  Those who are not in support of the bill and wish           
 to testify should come forward.  Chairman Green informed everyone             
 who had signed up to testify that they would be shown in support of           
 SB 137, unless they wished to speak in opposition to the bill.  She           
 proceeded to ask if any of the sites on teleconference wanted to              
 testify.                                                                      
                                                                               
 CAROLYN FLOYD, Mayor of the City of Kodiak, informed the committee            
 that Kodiak is facing a real dollar reduction in their budget and             
 they are looking for additional savings.  She noted that the                  
 committee should have a letter from Kodiak in support of SB 137.              
 She emphasized the need for an amendment that would make                      
 eligibility for three years begin July 1, 1995 or not later than              
 October 1, 1995.  She explained that this earlier opening date with           
 an extended length of eligibility was due to the increased turnover           
 caused with this program.  Under the proposed program, the City of            
 Kodiak would have to hire and train 25 percent of their entire work           
 force, 16 employees would be eligible for early retirement.  Many             
 of these positions are a more experienced and knowledgeable level.            
 Furthermore, a longer period would allow the counsel and management           
 the opportunity to evaluate personnel resources and restructure the           
 city's operations.  She noted that the reduced hours of vacation              
 had not been calculated which would also affect Kodiak's budget.              
                                                                               
 CHAIRMAN GREEN asked if those comments were included in her letter.           
 CAROLYN FLOYD replied yes.  CHAIRMAN GREEN said that suggestion               
 would be passed on to the Finance Committee, the next committee of            
 referral.                                                                     
                                                                               
 BOB STALNAKER stated that this concern of Ms. Floyd is an issue for           
 many employers.  He pointed out that another difference between SB            
 132 and SB 137 is that SB 137 includes political subdivisions not             
 just school districts.  The delayed process is present in order to            
 provide the most efficient staffing needs so as not to delay                  
 retirement or the employers ability to enter necessary contracts.             
 The staffing needs could be reviewed to allow the political                   
 subdivisions the same amount of time as the state.                            
                                                                               
 Number 072                                                                    
                                                                               
 VAL KOEBERLEIN, the Finance Director for the City of Homer, agreed            
 with Kodiak's comments.  The extended time would afford the city              
 the opportunity to restructure.  He informed the committee that if            
 Homer had to fill 11 positions all at once, they would still save             
 $370,000 over three years.  With the extended time in which some of           
 the positions would be eliminated, the savings would increase to              
 approximately $700,000.                                                       
                                                                               
 SENATOR SALO moved that CS SB 137(HES) be reported out of committee           
 with individual recommendations.                                              
                                                                               
 SENATOR LEMAN objected in order to point out that the last line on            
 page 1 is repeated on the top of page 2.  He recommended that                 
 technical problem be noted for clean up.  Senator Leman removed his           
 objection.                                                                    
                                                                               
 CHAIRMAN GREEN asked if there was further objection.  Hearing no              
 further objection, CS SB 137(HES) was moved out of committee with             
 individual recommendations.                                                   
                                                                               
 There being no further business before the committee, the meeting             
 adjourned at 10:44 p.m.                                                       
                                                                               

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