Legislature(1997 - 1998)

04/23/1997 09:01 AM HES

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
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      SENATE HEALTH, EDUCATION & SOCIAL SERVICES COMMITTEE                     
                         April 23, 1997                                        
                           9:01 a.m.                                           
                                                                               
  MEMBERS PRESENT                                                              
                                                                               
 Senator Gary Wilken, Chairman                                                 
 Senator Loren Leman, Vice Chairman                                            
 Senator Lyda Green                                                            
 Senator Jerry Ward                                                            
 Senator Johnny Ellis                                                          
                                                                               
  MEMBERS ABSENT                                                               
                                                                               
 All members present.                                                          
                                                                               
  COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                           
                                                                               
 Confirmation:  Board of Dispensing Opticians, Barbara Landi                   
                                                                               
 SENATE BILL NO. 154                                                           
 "An Act relating to paternity determination and child support;                
 relating to reporting of and access to financial or other                     
 information for child support purposes; making changes to laws                
 relating to occupational, recreational, or other licenses, permits,           
 certificates, or other authorizations issued by the state to                  
 facilitate administration of child support laws; relating to the              
 interest rate on judgments or decrees for child support; relating             
 to immunity from civil liability for good faith compliance with               
 reporting or other requirements for child support purposes;                   
 relating to voiding fraudulent transfers and to penalties for                 
 noncompliance with orders for child support purposes; amending                
 Rules 4, 5, 35, 52, 58, 60(b), 78, 90.1, and 90.3, Alaska Rules of            
 Civil Procedure; amending Rule 901, Alaska Rules of Evidence;                 
 amending Rules 3 and 5, Alaska Bar Association Rules; repealing the           
 effective date of sec. 45, ch. 107, SLA 1996; and providing for an            
 effective date."                                                              
                                                                               
  - HEARD AND HELD                                                             
                                                                               
 SENATE BILL NO. 116                                                           
 "An Act relating to welfare to work tax credits under the Alaska              
 Net Income Tax Act; and providing for an effective date."                     
  - SCHEDULED BUT NOT HEARD                                                    
                                                                               
  PREVIOUS SENATE COMMITTEE ACTION                                             
                                                                               
 SB 154 - No previous Senate action to record.                                 
                                                                               
 SB 116 - See Senate State Affairs Committee minutes dated 3/25/97,            
      3/27/97.                                                                 
                                                                               
  WITNESS REGISTER                                                             
                                                                               
 Myrna Maynard, Staff                                                          
 Senator Pearce                                                                
 State Capitol                                                                 
 Juneau, Alaska 99801-1182                                                     
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Discussed SB 154.                                      
                                                                               
 Glenda Straube, Director                                                      
 Child Support Enforcement Division                                            
 Department of Revenue                                                         
 550 W. 7th Avenue                                                             
 Anchorage, Alaska 99501                                                       
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Explained SB 154.                                      
                                                                               
 Marilyn May                                                                   
 Assistant Attorney General                                                    
 Collections & Support                                                         
 Department of Law                                                             
 1031 W. 4th Avenue, Suite 200                                                 
 Anchorage, Alaska 99501-1994                                                  
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Answered questions.                                    
                                                                               
 Dan Branch                                                                    
 Assistant Attorney General                                                    
 Human Services Section                                                        
 PO Box 110300                                                                 
 Juneau, Alaska 99811-0300                                                     
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Answered questions.                                    
                                                                               
 Susan Haymes, Law Specialist                                                  
 Limited Entry Fisheries                                                       
 8800 Glacier Highway, Suite 109                                               
 Juneau, Alaska 99801-8079                                                     
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Answered questions.                                    
                                                                               
 Gary Roth                                                                     
 Alaska Bankers Association                                                    
 119 N. Cushman                                                                
 Fairbanks, Alaska 99701                                                       
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Suggested clarification of the definition of           
                      a "financial institution".                               
                                                                               
 Jodie Olmstead                                                                
 Fairbanks, Alaska                                                             
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Discussed her child support case.                      
                                                                               
  ACTION NARRATIVE                                                             
                                                                               
  TAPE 97-42, SIDE A                                                           
                                                                               
         Confirmation:  Board of Dispensing Opticians                        
                                                                               
 Number 001                                                                    
                                                                               
  CHAIRMAN WILKEN  called the Senate Health, Education & Social                
 Services Committee (HES) to order at 9:01 a.m. and announced that             
 the Confirmation for the Board of Dispensing Opticians nominee                
 would be the first order of business.                                         
                                                                               
 The committee took a brief at ease.                                           
                                                                               
  BARBARA LANDI , nominee for the Board of Dispensing Opticians,               
 informed the committee that she was educated as a teacher and                 
 attended college in New York.  Ms. Landi worked many years in the             
 Mat-Su Valley, but more recently she and her husband operate a                
 small business in Anchorage.  Ms. Landi has worked for the Alaska             
 State Fair and for a farm and garden supply company.  Ms. Landi is            
 also a free-lance writer.  Ms. Landi enjoyed her experience as a              
 member of the Board of Veterinary Examiners for the last four years           
 and therefore she applied to be on another board.                             
                                                                               
  CHAIRMAN WILKEN  noted that Ms. Landi's resume states that she has           
 taught every grade from K-12.  Chairman Wilken said that was                  
 testimony to Ms. Landi's patience.                                            
                                                                               
  SENATOR GREEN  commented that she and Ms. Landi had crossed paths in         
 substitute teaching and work at the Alaska State Fair.  Senator               
 Green wished Ms. Landi luck.                                                  
                                                                               
  CHAIRMAN WILKEN  stated that the hearing results would be passed to          
 the Senate President.  Chairman Wilken congratulated Ms. Landi.               
                                                                               
                                                                               
                SB 154 CHILD SUPPORT & PATERNITY                              
                                                                              
 Number 076                                                                    
                                                                               
  CHAIRMAN WILKEN  announced that  SB 154  was the next order of               
 business before the committee.                                                
                                                                               
  SENATOR WARD  moved that CSSB 154(HES) be adopted for consideration.         
 Without objection, it was adopted.                                            
                                                                               
  MYRNA MAYNARD , staff to Senator Pearce, informed the committee that         
 Senator Pearce sponsored SB 154 on behalf of the Child Support                
 Enforcement Division (CSED).  Ms. Maynard directed the committee to           
 the preamble of the bill which relates the intent of the bill.  Ms.           
 Maynard deferred to Ms. Straube for further comments.                         
                                                                               
  GLENDA STRAUBE , Director of CSED in the Department of Revenue,              
 noted that in the Fall of last year, Congress passed the Personal             
 Responsibility, Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act.  Along with              
 the effort to put people to work was an emphasis on child support             
 efforts.  This bipartisan effort to strengthen child support laws             
 recognizes the responsibility of all parents to support their                 
 children.  The federal act makes substantial changes to the child             
 support mandates for all states.  Ms. Straube reviewed the changes            
 created by the federal act.  The federal act requires all employers           
 to report new hires/rehires within 20 business days.  Currently,              
 that is only required when there are 20 or more employees and the             
 time limit is 30 days.  Within seven days of receiving that                   
 information, CSED must send that data to the federal government.              
                                                                               
 Number 147                                                                    
                                                                               
  SENATOR LEMAN  asked if all businesses, even those who employee only         
 one, would be required to report.   GLENDA STRAUBE  replied yes.              
                                                                               
  GLENDA STRAUBE  noted that currently an employer has 10 days to send         
 the employee's withheld money to the federal government.  Under the           
 federal act, no prior notice is necessary to the obligor when the             
 withholding order is sent.  Currently, prior notice is given. Under           
 the federal act, financial institutions and like entities must                
 match data with CSED quarterly.  CSED already has access to bank              
 information and the ability to lien.  The matching of data                    
 quarterly would reduce the need for the use of subpoenas to acquire           
 that information.  Ms. Straube noted that this has been done in               
 Massachusetts for some time.  Both the child support agency and               
 banks have become comfortable with the system.                                
                                                                               
 Ms. Straube explained that under the federal act an occupational              
 license can be revoked for noncompliance of a child support order             
 as well as for noncompliance of a subpoena or warrant.                        
                                                                               
  SENATOR GREEN  said that currently CSED does not revoke a license            
 when a person does not comply with a subpoena or warrant, but would           
 under the federal act.   GLENDA STRAUBE  agreed.   SENATOR GREEN  aske        
 if the revocation would be automatic.   GLENDA STRAUBE  replied no,           
 license revocation is a last resort.                                          
                                                                               
  SENATOR ELLIS  inquired as to which license revocations were                 
 included under Senator Green's bill last year and those under the             
 federal mandates.   GLENDA STRAUBE  specified that the federal                
 mandate included the occupational, drivers license, and                       
 recreational license.  The recreational license was not included              
 under Senator Green's bill last year because it is difficult to               
 administer.  Also last year's bill did not include commercial                 
 fishing crewman's licenses.                                                   
                                                                               
 In response to Chairman Wilken,  GLENDA STRAUBE  pointed out that the         
 list in the committee packet with the bullet beginning with                   
 "Ensures child support judgements" and those bullets underneath               
 were requested and are not mandatory; those bullets are Alaskan               
 provisions.  The bullet beginning with "Drops time limitation" and            
 up are federal requirements.                                                  
                                                                               
 Number 221                                                                    
                                                                               
  SENATOR WARD  asked if the license revocation provision included a           
 commercial crewman's license.   GLENDA STRAUBE  said that was                 
 exempted per the request of the limited entry commission.  The                
 division agreed to that because of the enforcement difficulties.              
 The crew license can be purchased in some very remote locations.              
 The division was trying to move away from those licenses that would           
 be difficult to enforce and not cost effective.  Under the federal            
 act, the hunting for non-personal and the fishing for non-                    
 subsistence use licenses as well as the commercial crew members               
 fishing license can be revoked.                                               
                                                                               
  SENATOR LEMAN  asked if this revocation of licenses provision                
 actually was partially an Alaskan provision not federally mandated.           
                                                                               
  GLENDA STRAUBE  clarified that the federal mandate allows the                
 revocation of all occupational, drivers, and recreational licenses.           
 Ms. Straube said that if hunting and fishing licenses fell off the            
 list, then a request for an exemption for commercial crew members             
 fishing licenses could be requested.  Ms. Straube did note that               
 exemptions for child support do not occur very often.  With regards           
 to hunting for non personal use, Ms. Straube was not sure how that            
 would be determined because there are no subsistence hunting                  
 provisions or license whereas fishing does have subsistence and non           
 subsistence licenses.                                                         
                                                                               
 Ms. Straube pointed out that there will be a change in how the                
 money is dispersed once collected.  Past AFDC recipients must                 
 receive all child support payments before the state can reimburse             
 itself.  Ms. May and Mr. Branch noted that this did not require a             
 statutory change and could be done by regulation.  Ms. Straube                
 stated that there are many things mandated by federal law that are            
 not in this legislation because the department already has the                
 ability to do that mandate per existing statute and can merely do             
 a regulation.  Ms. Straube continued with the next federal mandate            
 which requires social security numbers on state licenses, permits             
 and other documents.                                                          
                                                                               
 Number 297                                                                    
                                                                               
  SENATOR LEMAN  said that requirement caught his attention.  A                
 person's social security number is not for identification purposes.           
  GLENDA STRAUBE  noted that the federal law dealt with some                   
 controversial issues and believed that Congress felt that if people           
 were to be taken off welfare, then the other side must pay their              
 part as well.   SENATOR GREEN  asked if the mandate meant that the            
 social security number would now be on a person's drivers license.            
 A discussion ensued regarding whether that already occurs.                    
                                                                               
  CHAIRMAN WILKEN  stated that this would probably receive further             
 discussion at a later time and he encouraged such discussion.                 
                                                                               
  GLENDA STRAUBE  continued the review of the federal mandates                 
 encompassed in SB 154.  SB 154 attempts to address the interstate             
 problem by requiring that various state agencies provide                      
 information to all child support agencies.  However, such                     
 information can only be used for child support purposes.  The                 
 federal mandate that grants immunity from prosecution to entities             
 who in good faith provide information or honor CSED actions                   
 protects private entities.  Ms. Straube pointed out that the                  
 federal mandate expands the paternity establishment requirements.             
 One of the more important expansions deals with the acknowledgment            
 of paternity.  Parents must be informed of rights and consequences            
 of singing an acknowledgement of paternity, in particular child               
 support.  After 60 days of a signed acknowledgement of paternity,             
 that can only be rescinded in court and based on fraud, duress, or            
 material mistake of fact.                                                     
                                                                               
  SENATOR GREEN  inquired as to the current standard of rescinding             
 paternity.   GLENDA STRAUBE  pointed out that the administrative              
 paternity establishment bill passed, Senator Halford included                 
 disestablishment which relates to this requirement.  The                      
 disestablishment could occur up to three years after the birth or             
 the time the person could have known that one was not the father.             
  SENATOR GREEN  clarified that she was referring to the                       
 acknowledgement of paternity of unwed parents.   DAN BRANCH                   
 explained that the current statute provides that if a putative                
 father acknowledges in writing that he is the parent of the child,            
 that legitimates the child.  If SB 154 is adopted, that finding of            
 paternity could not be set aside by a court unless the court found            
 that there was fraud in obtaining the acknowledgement form.  SB 154           
 limits what can be argued in court.                                           
                                                                               
  GLENDA STRAUBE  informed the committee that there are cases in which         
 a person signing an acknowledgement of paternity knew that he was             
 not the biological father.  Then after a break up, that father does           
 not want to pay child support and with this there would be grounds            
 to go to court to say that he was not the biological father.                  
                                                                               
 In response to Chairman Wilken,  DAN BRANCH  explained that                   
 "putative" means thought or assumed to be the father.                         
                                                                               
 Number 390                                                                    
                                                                               
  GLENDA STRAUBE  explained that under current statutes a putative             
 father does not have the right to request blood tests and                     
 establishment of paternity, but under SB 154 he will.  Under SB
 154, Ms. Straube believed that Public Assistance would reserve the            
 right to decide "good cause" exceptions to genetic testing.  The              
 bill will also require that employer information must be provided             
 when establishing paternity in order to decrease the time between             
 the paternity and order establishment.                                        
                                                                               
 Under current interstate laws, the location of a custodial parent             
 or children is not released if there is risk to the health, safety            
 or liberty of the children.  That has been added to the domestic              
 law per the federal mandate.  There have been changes to comply               
 with the Uniform Interstate Family Support Act.  SB 154 provides              
 the department the authority to contract out child support                    
 disbursement functions.  SB 154 provides the state with the                   
 authority to require delinquent obligors, in AFDC cases, to                   
 participate in appropriate work activities.  Ms. Straube pointed              
 out that states that did welfare reform a few years ago find that             
 once notices go out, people, who were once working under the table,           
 suddenly report work activities.  SB 154 would void fraudulent                
 transfers when used to evade child support collections which Ms.              
 Straube said occurs frequently.                                               
                                                                               
   In response to Senator Green,  GLENDA STRAUBE  informed the committe        
 of a case of fraudulent transfer in which an obligor owned a                  
 trucking company, but suddenly his girlfriend owned a trucking                
 company not the obligor.  SB 154 requires that entities in Alaska             
 recognize liens from other states.  If the delivery of legal                  
 documents in person has been unsuccessful, legal service can be               
 considered by first class mail.                                               
                                                                               
 Number 438                                                                    
                                                                               
  SENATOR LEMAN  pointed out that Section 91 says that "An                     
 administrative subpoena shall be delivered by first class mail."              
 Why would delivery in person of that subpoena be disallowed?                  
  MARILYN MAY  believed that the language was used in order to convey          
 that it is unnecessary to provide personal service of a subpoena.             
  GLENDA STRAUBE  interjected that her comments to first class mail of         
 legal documents is not limited to subpoenas.  Section 91 is the               
 subpoena section.  Ms. Straube indicated that the use of first                
 class mail is in another section that could be specified.                     
                                                                               
  GLENDA STRAUBE  continued with the federal mandates included in              
 SB 154.  Under SB 154, there is no "statute of limitations" on                
 reporting arrears to credit bureaus.  Even if the arrears are paid,           
 that remains on the credit report.                                            
                                                                               
 In response to Senator Green,  MARILYN MAY  stated that Section 144           
 refers to this issue.  Ms. May clarified that Section 144 does not            
 relate to the notification that an arrearage has been paid.  There            
 is no statutory obligation on that matter.                                    
                                                                               
 GLENDA STRAUBE  explained that currently, if an obligor pays all the          
 arrears that is removed from the credit report.  Ms. Straube is               
 uncomfortable with that practice because all other debts, even if             
 paid, remain on the credit report.  SB 154 would bring the                    
 department into conformance with the reporting of most delinquent             
 credits.  Ms. Straube noted that concluded the federal mandates               
 included in SB 154.                                                           
                                                                               
 Ms. Straube moved to the areas in SB 154 which are recommended                
 changes from CSED or the AG's office.  The division deals with two            
 and sometimes three different interest rates with child support.              
 The recommendation is to use one rate of interest on child support            
 related debts and judgements.  Ms. Straube emphasized that this               
 change is merely an administrative issue.                                     
                                                                               
  SENATOR LEMAN  asked if the change to one interest rate would be an          
 incentive or disincentive for an obligor to pay.   GLENDA STRAUBE             
 said that, personally, she regretted this request because it is               
 lower than other interest rates.  Ms. Straube indicated that the              
 six percent interest rate could place the debt at the bottom of the           
 list which could be a disincentive.   SENATOR LEMAN  understood the           
 intent, but wanted to review that issue.                                      
                                                                               
 Number 510                                                                    
                                                                               
  GLENDA STRAUBE  stated the next recommendation which would allow the         
 correction of a child support order if based on fraudulent                    
 information.  Currently, nothing can be done retroactively if a               
 person hid income in the past; no retroactive modification can be             
 done nor can there be a change in the child support.  CSED wants to           
 be able to do what was passed in welfare reform last year which               
 allows the division to vacate and reestablish an order when someone           
 lied to avoid child support payments.                                         
                                                                               
  SENATOR GREEN  asked if a child support order is determined to be            
 based on erroneous information and the payment should have been               
 less; would the division repay that individual for overpayments?              
  GLENDA STRAUBE  replied yes.  Ms. Straube explained that CSED cannot         
 retroactively modify an order.  An order is established on factual            
 information provided to CSED by the obligor or the Department of              
 Labor data.  Ms. Straube said that the concern last year was that             
 CSED could not help those with a large arrearage who were actually            
 not making enough to cover the debt.  That can be done, but that              
 would require going to court and many resources.                              
                                                                               
  SENATOR GREEN  asked if an ex-spouse makes claims that the spouse is         
 making more than the spouse actually does, would that information             
 be used to determine a child support order.   GLENDA STRAUBE  said            
 that CSED does not base the order on that information.  However on            
 a default order when the obligor will not provide information, the            
 division would review the best data for the industry with which the           
 obligor is employed to determine the order.                                   
                                                                               
  SENATOR GREEN  asked if Ms. Straube has observed any difference              
 since last year with regard to people working with CSED on default            
 orders.   GLENDA STRAUBE  said that the division has just begun to            
 deal with the defaults.  The division has not dealt with the                  
 default orders enough to provide any observations.  Ms. Straube               
 hoped that once an obligor's debt is based on the obligor's actual            
 earnings, that obligor would be more likely to pay ongoing child              
 support and arrears.                                                          
                                                                               
  SENATOR WARD  inquired as to the meaning of the federal mandate that         
 allows CSED to contract out child support disbursement functions.             
 What is the current practice?   GLENDA STRAUBE  explained that under          
 federal welfare reform, each state is required to have a central              
 location for collection and disbursement of child support.  If a              
 state does not have the capacity to do so, the federal mandate                
 provides the authority to contract out those functions.  Ms.                  
 Straube said that Alaska already has a centralized location, but              
 the issue is being reviewed to contract out.                                  
                                                                               
  CHAIRMAN WILKEN  pointed out that the next committee of referral for         
 SB 154 is Senate Finance.  Chairman Wilken suggested that any                 
 concerns be mentioned for Ms. Straube to address.  Those concerns             
 should be addressed in SHES.                                                  
                                                                               
  TAPE 97-42, SIDE B                                                           
                                                                               
  SENATOR GREEN  asked what would happen if SB 154 did not pass this           
 year or next year.   GLENDA STRAUBE  said that SB 154 has to pass             
 this year.  The Congressional legislation passed late in the                  
 Congressional session which has left states and the federal                   
 government scrambling.  The federal government can impose penalties           
 such as all of the CSED budget.  In further response, Ms. Straube             
 said that there is no waiver process.  Ms. Straube believed that              
 there is no way to get this through, but the legislation must pass            
 next year or there would not be any excuse.  Without passage,                 
 public assistance would lose $3.2 million from its budget.                    
                                                                               
  GLENDA STRAUBE  continued with the CSED and AGO's recommended                
 changes.  The current employer penalty of $1,000 is changed to                
 $10,000 when an employee is fired due to an income withholding                
 order.  Ms. Straube noted that some employers refuse to collect the           
 money while others collect the money and use it themselves.                   
                                                                               
  SENATOR WARD  inquired as to how many times employers have been              
 fined $1,000.   GLENDA STRAUBE  said that the division has not fined          
 anyone because the requirements for proof are so strict.   MARILYN            
 MAY  was not aware of such a case.  Ms. May indicated that the small          
 penalty, the difficulties of making a case, and the cost of such a            
 case have not been worth pursing such a case.  The current penalty            
 is not much of a disincentive to employers.                                   
                                                                               
 Number 547                                                                    
                                                                               
  GLENDA STRAUBE  informed the committee that employers have indicated         
 their dislike of the withholding orders.  The next recommended                
 change is a clarification that parents owe a duty of support                  
 whether or not a support order has been entered.  The courts do               
 that now.                                                                     
                                                                               
 Currently, the Supreme Court makes changes to the Child Support               
 Guidelines which necessitates CSED to promulgate regulations                  
 conforming to the Supreme Court changes.  This recommendation would           
 make the Supreme Court changes automatically become CSED                      
 regulations.                                                                  
                                                                               
  CHAIRMAN WILKEN  asked if Senator Ward's question regarding the              
 revocation of commercial fishing crewmen's licenses had been                  
 answered.                                                                     
                                                                               
  SENATOR WARD  asked who determined that there was a similarity               
 between a recreational license and crew license.  Do crew licenses            
 fall under this and how many crew licenses are there?                         
                                                                               
  SUSAN HAYMES , Commercial Fisheries Entry Commission, said that crew         
 licenses are covered under the federal mandates.  Ms. Haymes was              
 unsure as to the number of crew licenses issued by the Department             
 of Fish & Game, but offered to get that information for the                   
 committee.  Ms. Haymes believed that the number of crew licenses              
 would be in the tens of thousands.                                            
                                                                               
  GLENDA STRAUBE  clarified that the commercial crewmen's fishing              
 license falls under the occupational licenses not the recreational            
 license.  The single licenses for fishing and hunting are under the           
 recreational license.                                                         
                                                                               
  SENATOR LEMAN  noted that in several places there is a change from           
 "court" to "tribunal"; what is the significance of that change?               
  MARILYN MAY  explained that the Welfare Reform Act requires that any         
 action that can be taken by a court can be taken by any appropriate           
 tribunal.  Alaska already has an agency with administrative                   
 authority to do many things being done by the courts in other                 
 states.  The agency's authority over child support enforcement is             
 almost coextensive to that of a court.  When "tribunal" is used, it           
 is meant to cover the administrative powers of the agency.                    
                                                                               
 Number 487                                                                    
                                                                               
  SENATOR LEMAN  posed the scenario in which the State of Alaska is            
 unsuccessful in getting the U.S. Supreme Court to take the Venetie            
 case which would logically result in more Indian country in Alaska.           
 Would the federal law apply to the tribes?  Senator Leman assumed             
 that the tribes would take on some of the responsibility instead of           
 child support enforcement; would that require further action or               
 would that fall under the sovereign to sovereign relationship?                
                                                                               
  MARILYN MAY  pointed out that the Federal Welfare Reform Act does            
 include a section which deals with child support enforcement for              
 Indian tribes and those states that have Indian country.  The                 
 federal act allows for the child support agency to have cooperative           
 agreements with the tribe or tribal organizations under certain               
 circumstances such as established courts.                                     
                                                                               
  SENATOR LEMAN  asked if the child support enforcement activities are         
 required to happen by either the tribe or via these cooperative               
 agreements.   GLENDA STRAUBE  explained that the state has the                
 ultimate responsibility regardless of whether a tribe takes                   
 responsibility for the local child support enforcement.  Other                
 states have tribes in Indian country that already run programs.               
 The tribe can have child support guidelines that are different than           
 the state guidelines as well as determining a different due amount.           
 Currently, Metlakatla has the authority to make such decisions.               
 Ms. Straube believed that most of the nonprofits will not want to             
 take over child support.  In explanation to the situation in                  
 Metlakatla, Ms. Straube said that Metlakatla is determining how               
 child support will be established and how much will be withheld.              
                                                                               
  DAN BRANCH  specified that Metlakatla is not directly enforcing              
 child support, but is raising sovereign immunity in regards to the            
 child support enforcement agency garnishing wages of anyone working           
 for the tribal entity.  Metlakatla, a recognized federal Indian               
 reservation, is different than other tribal entities in Alaska.               
 There is no child support officer in Metlakatla.                              
                                                                               
 Number 438                                                                    
                                                                               
  GARY ROTH , President of Denali State Bank, informed the committee           
 that he was representing the Alaska Bankers Association.  Mr. Roth            
 directed the committee to Section 76 (D) of the CS, page 30 line              
 22.  Mr. Roth believed that the definition of "financial                      
 institution" is limited to banks, foreign banks, mutual savings               
 banks, small loans, trust companies, and credit unions.  Mr. Roth             
 suggested that 50 percent of the deposit accounts are held by                 
 brokerage houses and insurance companies.  The state would be                 
 missing an opportunity to further recapture these funds without an            
 amendment.  Mr. Roth recommended that on page 30, line 22 after               
 " financial institutions " insert ", brokerage houses, insurance            
 companies, and companies doing individual investments, transactions           
 or deposit accounts in the state".  Mr. Roth informed the committee           
 that his small bank is being asked to cross reference 486 names               
 which will take about two days to complete.  The proposed automated           
 system will be efficient and shorten the process.                             
                                                                               
  SENATOR LEMAN  believed that everything listed by Mr. Roth would be          
 included in the definition of "financial institution".                        
                                                                               
 DAN BRANCH  informed the committee that the definition of "financial          
 institution" is provided in the federal statute.  These procedures            
 will be developed through regulation.  Section 76 clearly provides            
 CSED with the regulator authority to establish these procedures.              
 Mr. Branch believed that the definition of "financial institution"            
 is defined rather broadly and would include those entities                    
 specified by Mr. Roth.                                                        
                                                                               
  GARY ROTH  asked if information was being routinely requested from           
 brokerage houses.   GLENDA STRAUBE  replied yes.  Ms. Straube                 
 recalled that at least one brokerage house claimed that it did not            
 have to comply.  Ms. Straube did not disagree with Mr. Roth's                 
 comments.                                                                     
                                                                               
  CHAIRMAN WILKEN  announced that Mr. Roth's suggestion be included in         
 the forthcoming CS in order to further discuss that issue.                    
 Chairman Wilken requested that Mr. Roth submit any industry numbers           
 regarding the percentage of money included in those other entities.           
 Chairman Wilken asked Ms. Straube if she had enough information to            
 return with a CS.                                                             
                                                                               
  GLENDA STRAUBE  believed that it would be best if there are any              
 major issues, that those be sent in writing to her.  Ms. Straube              
 said that she only heard one suggested change regarding the                   
 definition of "financial institution".                                        
                                                                               
  SENATOR WARD  requested that concerns and such be left to the                
 individual staff.                                                             
                                                                               
  SENATOR LEMAN  expressed the need to revisit the interest rate               
 issue.                                                                        
                                                                               
  CHAIRMAN WILKEN  announced that SB 116 would not be heard today, but         
 would be scheduled for Friday.                                                
                                                                               
 Number 334                                                                    
                                                                               
  JODIE OLMSTEAD , testifying from Fairbanks, informed the committee           
 that she has an unresolved child support enforcement case.  Ms.               
 Olmstead suggested the following to CSED in order to improve the              
 agency.  First, parents should be informed in a timely manner.  Ms.           
 Olmstead noted that her own court action started in October, but              
 she was not informed until March.  Ms. Olmstead informed the                  
 committee that in her case her ex-husband is in California and she            
 is in Alaska; both are cooperating with CSED.  The problem for Ms.            
 Olmstead is CSED in both states.  Second, one enforcement officer             
 should be assigned to a case.  Third, an effective grievance                  
 process should be provided.  Fourth, check challenged facts and               
 respond appropriately.  Ms. Olmstead noted that her ex-spouse                 
 worked for Fred Meyers.  CSED sent a withholding order to store A             
 which did not act on the order.  The order should have gone to the            
 corporate headquarters per her suggestion.  Ms. Olmstead called               
 Fred Meyer and CSED each month for six months to let them know of             
 the situation.  No child support was ever collected and Ms.                   
 Olmstead and her children went hungry.  Fifth, Ms. Olmstead                   
 suggested that the Ombudsman's recommendations be acted upon or               
 respond as to why.  The Ombudsman said that the state and the store           
 made a mistake and Ms. Olmstead and her children should have                  
 received a minimum of $42,000, but she received nothing.                      
                                                                               
 Sixth, the parent should be advised that the Attorney Generals                
 Office is present to protect CSED.  Ms. Olmstead informed the                 
 committee that the Attorney General made a deal with the store on             
 behalf of CSED.  Ms. Olmstead heard about the deal later through              
 the Attorney General and her children received $1,400.  The deal              
 protected the agency and avoided setting a precedent.  Seventh, Ms.           
 Olmstead stressed the need to be dedicated to obtaining support               
 money for children.  Ms. Olmstead commented on the over zealousness           
 of DFYS.  Eighth, act when parents point out the need to wait.  Ms.           
 Olmstead noted the frivolous court proceeding in which attempts to            
 obtain child support from a father who has no money.  Ninth, Ms.              
 Olmstead suggested that the agency should listen when a parent                
 points out that the agency's actions are unnecessarily driving a              
 wedge between the parents and hurting the children.                           
                                                                               
                                                                               
 Ms. Olmstead noted that she was a member of Concerned Parents for             
 Reform.  One of the biggest problems in Ms. Olmstead's case was the           
 communication between California and Alaska.  Ms. Olmstead said               
 that through her group she has heard of numerous situations such as           
 hers between California and Alaska.  Ms. Olmstead discussed her               
 unresolved situation further.  Ms. Olmstead said that many people             
 are on welfare because of the non-receipt of child support.                   
                                                                               
  CHAIRMAN WILKEN  encouraged Ms. Olmstead to fax her suggestions to           
 the committee and to follow SB 154 which may address some of her              
 concerns.  Chairman Wilken noted that he had a packet of                      
 information on welfare reform and would be happy to provide it to             
 anyone interested.  There being no further business before the                
 committee, the meeting was adjourned at 10:25 a.m.                            
                                                                               

Document Name Date/Time Subjects