Legislature(2005 - 2006)BUTROVICH 205

04/27/2005 08:30 AM JUDICIARY


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* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
+ SB 127 EXEC. BRANCH ETHICS: FINANCIAL INTERESTS TELECONFERENCED
Scheduled But Not Heard
<Pending Referral>
*+ SB 186 EXECUTIVE BRANCH ETHICS TELECONFERENCED
Scheduled But Not Heard
<Pending Referral>
*+ SB 187 LEGISLATIVE ETHICS/MEETINGS TELECONFERENCED
Scheduled But Not Heard
<Pending Referral>
+ Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled TELECONFERENCED
= HB 81 CONTRACTOR LICENSE ENFORCEMENT
Heard & Held
= HB 116 LIABILITY FOR ALCOHOL LAW VIOLATIONS
Moved SCS CSHB 116(JUD) Out of Committee
                    ALASKA STATE LEGISLATURE                                                                                  
              SENATE JUDICIARY STANDING COMMITTEE                                                                             
                         April 27, 2005                                                                                         
                           8:54 a.m.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Senator Ralph Seekins, Chair                                                                                                    
Senator Charlie Huggins, Vice Chair                                                                                             
Senator Gene Therriault                                                                                                         
Senator Hollis French                                                                                                           
Senator Gretchen Guess                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
All members present                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 116(JUD)                                                                                                  
"An Act relating to the  liability of certain persons for certain                                                               
violations of alcoholic beverages laws."                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
     MOVED SCS CSHB 116(JUD) OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 81(L&C)                                                                                                   
"An  Act establishing  an administrative  fine and  procedure for                                                               
construction  contractors  in certain  circumstances;  increasing                                                               
the amount of a civil penalty  for persons acting in the capacity                                                               
of contractors  or home inspectors;  modifying the elements  of a                                                               
crime   involving   contractor   registration   and   residential                                                               
contractors; modifying  the exemptions  from regulation  under AS                                                               
08.18 for contractors; and  exempting the administrative hearings                                                               
for imposing  an administrative fine on  construction contractors                                                               
from  the  hearings conducted  by  the  office of  administrative                                                               
hearings in the Department of Administration."                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
     HEARD AND HELD                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
SENATE BILL NO. 127                                                                                                             
"An Act prohibiting a public  officer from taking official action                                                               
regarding a matter in which  the public officer has a significant                                                               
financial interest;  and defining 'official action'  for purposes                                                               
of  the chapter  generally referred  to as  the Executive  Branch                                                               
Ethics Act."                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
     SCHEDULED BUT NOT HEARD                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
SENATE BILL NO. 186                                                                                                             
"An Act relating to the Alaska Executive Branch Ethics Act."                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
     SCHEDULED BUT NOT HEARD                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
SENATE BILL NO. 187                                                                                                             
"An Act relating to legislative  ethics open meetings guidelines,                                                               
to  the public  members of  the Select  Committee on  Legislative                                                               
Ethics, to  alternate members  of the  legislative subcommittees,                                                               
to  advisory  opinions,  and   to  confidential  information  and                                                               
proceedings   regarding   legislative   ethics   complaints   and                                                               
investigations."                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     SCHEDULED BUT NOT HEARD                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
PREVIOUS COMMITTEE ACTION                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
BILL: HB 81                                                                                                                   
SHORT TITLE: CONTRACTOR LICENSE ENFORCEMENT                                                                                     
SPONSOR(s): REPRESENTATIVE(s) ANDERSON                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
01/19/05       (H)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
01/19/05       (H)       L&C, JUD, FIN                                                                                          
01/21/05       (H)       L&C AT 3:15 PM CAPITOL 17                                                                              
01/21/05       (H)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
01/21/05       (H)       MINUTE(L&C)                                                                                            
01/26/05       (H)       L&C AT 3:15 PM CAPITOL 17                                                                              
01/26/05       (H)       Moved CSHB 81(L&C) Out of Committee                                                                    
01/26/05       (H)       MINUTE(L&C)                                                                                            
02/02/05       (H)       L&C RPT CS(L&C) NT 5DP 1NR                                                                             
02/02/05       (H)       DP: LYNN, KOTT, LEDOUX, GUTTENBERG,                                                                    
                         ANDERSON;                                                                                              
02/02/05       (H)       NR: ROKEBERG                                                                                           
02/09/05       (H)       JUD AT 1:00 PM CAPITOL 120                                                                             
02/09/05       (H)       Moved CSHB 81(L&C) Out of Committee                                                                    
02/09/05       (H)       MINUTE(JUD)                                                                                            
02/11/05       (H)       JUD RPT CS(L&C) NT 3DP 3NR                                                                             
02/11/05       (H)       DP: GRUENBERG, KOTT, ANDERSON;                                                                         
02/11/05       (H)       NR: DAHLSTROM, COGHILL, MCGUIRE                                                                        
03/02/05       (H)       FIN AT 1:30 PM HOUSE FINANCE 519                                                                       
03/02/05       (H)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
03/02/05       (H)       MINUTE(FIN)                                                                                            
03/07/05       (H)       FIN AT 1:30 PM HOUSE FINANCE 519                                                                       
03/07/05       (H)       Moved CSHB 81(L&C) Out of Committee                                                                    
03/07/05       (H)       MINUTE(FIN)                                                                                            
03/09/05       (H)       FIN RPT CS(L&C) NT 3DP 6NR                                                                             
03/09/05       (H)       DP: HAWKER, FOSTER, MEYER;                                                                             
03/09/05       (H)       NR: MOSES, JOULE, STOLTZE, CROFT,                                                                      
                        KELLY, CHENAULT                                                                                         
03/16/05       (H)       TRANSMITTED TO (S)                                                                                     
03/16/05       (H)       VERSION: CSHB 81(L&C)                                                                                  
03/18/05       (S)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
03/18/05       (S)       L&C, JUD                                                                                               
04/07/05       (S)       L&C AT 1:30 PM BELTZ 211                                                                               
04/07/05       (S)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
04/07/05       (S)       MINUTE(L&C)                                                                                            
04/19/05       (S)       L&C AT 1:30 PM BELTZ 211                                                                               
04/19/05       (S)       Moved SCS CSHB 81(L&C) Out of Committee                                                                
04/19/05       (S)       MINUTE(L&C)                                                                                            
04/20/05       (S)       L&C RPT SCS 2DP 3NR SAME TITLE                                                                         
04/20/05       (S)       NR: BUNDE, DAVIS, SEEKINS                                                                              
04/20/05       (S)       DP: ELLIS, STEVENS B                                                                                   
04/26/05       (S)       JUD AT 8:30 AM BUTROVICH 205                                                                           
04/26/05       (S)       Scheduled But Not Heard                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
BILL: HB 116                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE: LIABILITY FOR ALCOHOL LAW VIOLATIONS                                                                               
SPONSOR(s): REPRESENTATIVE(s) MEYER                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
01/28/05       (H)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
01/28/05       (H)       STA, JUD                                                                                               
03/01/05       (H)       STA AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
03/01/05       (H)       Moved CSHB 116(STA) Out of Committee                                                                   
03/01/05       (H)       MINUTE(STA)                                                                                            
03/02/05       (H)       STA RPT CS(STA) NT 3DP 2DNP 1AM                                                                        
03/02/05       (H)       DP: GARDNER, GATTO, SEATON;                                                                            
03/02/05       (H)       DNP: RAMRAS, ELKINS;                                                                                   
03/02/05       (H)       AM: GRUENBERG                                                                                          
03/21/05       (H)       JUD AT 1:00 PM CAPITOL 120                                                                             
03/21/05       (H)       Moved CSHB 116(JUD) Out of Committee                                                                   
03/21/05       (H)       MINUTE(JUD)                                                                                            
03/22/05       (H)       JUD RPT CS(JUD) NT 7DP                                                                                 
03/22/05       (H)       DP:    GRUENBERG,     ANDERSON,    KOTT,                                                               
                         DAHLSTROM, COGHILL, GARA, MCGUIRE                                                                      
04/01/05       (H)       TRANSMITTED TO (S)                                                                                     
04/01/05       (H)       VERSION: CSHB 116(JUD)                                                                                 
04/04/05       (S)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
04/04/05       (S)       STA, JUD                                                                                               
04/14/05       (S)       STA AT 3:30 PM BELTZ 211                                                                               
04/14/05       (S)       Moved CSHB 116(JUD) Out of Committee                                                                   
04/14/05       (S)       MINUTE(STA)                                                                                            
04/15/05       (S)       STA RPT 4DP                                                                                            
04/15/05       (S)       DP: THERRIAULT, ELTON, HUGGINS, DAVIS                                                                  
04/25/05       (S)       JUD AT 8:30 AM BUTROVICH 205                                                                           
04/25/05       (S)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
04/25/05       (S)       MINUTE(JUD)                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
WITNESS REGISTER                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                              
Mr. Michael Pawlowski                                                                                                           
Staff to Representative Kevin Meyer                                                                                             
Alaska State Capitol                                                                                                            
Juneau, AK  99801-1182                                                                                                          
POSITION STATEMENT:  Commented on HB 116                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Mr. John Bittner                                                                                                                
Staff to Representative Tom Anderson                                                                                            
Alaska State Capitol                                                                                                            
Juneau, AK  99801-1182                                                                                                          
POSITION STATEMENT:  Introduced HB 81                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Grey Mitchell, Director                                                                                                     
Labor Standards and Safety Division                                                                                             
Department of Labor & Workforce Development                                                                                     
PO Box 21149                                                                                                                    
Juneau, AK 99802-1149                                                                                                           
POSITION STATEMENT:  Commented on HB 81                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Mike Musick                                                                                                                 
Ester Construction                                                                                                              
Fairbanks, AK                                                                                                                   
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in support of HB 81                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Wally Smith                                                                                                                 
Smith Alaska Construction                                                                                                       
Fairbanks, AK                                                                                                                   
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in support of HB 81                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Steve Gochis                                                                                                                
Cut Above Contracting                                                                                                           
Fairbanks, AK                                                                                                                   
POSITION STATEMENT:  Commented on HB 81                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Dave Dillard                                                                                                                
3-2-1 Construction                                                                                                              
Fairbanks, AK                                                                                                                   
POSITION STATEMENT:  Commented on HB 81                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Terry Duszynki                                                                                                              
Fairbanks, AK                                                                                                                   
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in support of HB 81                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Todd Larkin                                                                                                                 
Fairbanks, AK                                                                                                                   
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in opposition of HB 81                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Brent Lavelle                                                                                                               
Denali State Bank                                                                                                               
Fairbanks, AK                                                                                                                   
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in support of HB 81                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Randy Doll                                                                                                                  
Fairbanks, AK                                                                                                                   
POSITION STATEMENT:  Commented on HB 81                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Dan Foltz                                                                                                                   
Fairbanks, AK                                                                                                                   
POSITION STATEMENT:  Commented on HB 81                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Bob Herting                                                                                                                 
Fairbanks, AK                                                                                                                   
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in support of HB 81                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Patrick Dalton                                                                                                              
Delta Junction, AK                                                                                                              
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in opposition of HB 81                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Dave Owens, Owner                                                                                                           
Owens Inspection Services                                                                                                       
Palmer, AK                                                                                                                      
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in support of HB 81                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Jeff Desmit                                                                                                                 
Southeast Alaska Builders Association                                                                                           
Juneau, AK                                                                                                                      
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in support of HB 81                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
ACTION NARRATIVE                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR RALPH SEEKINS called the Senate Judiciary Standing                                                                      
Committee meeting to order at 9:21:04 AM. Present were Senators                                                               
Charlie Huggins and Chair Ralph Seekins.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
       CSHB 116(JUD)-LIABILITY FOR ALCOHOL LAW VIOLATIONS                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
9:21:04 AM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR RALPH SEEKINS announced HB 116 to be up for consideration.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  SEEKINS confided  he would  consider adding  a retroactive                                                               
application to HB 116.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Mr. MIKE PAWLOWSKI, staff to  Representative Meyer, clarified his                                                               
previous  testimony regarding  the action  pending on  the youth.                                                               
The youth  who was  volunteering with  the police  was threatened                                                               
with a  lawsuit but he  is not sure  where the lawsuit  stands at                                                               
this point in time.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Chair Seekins announced a brief recess at 9:27:09 AM.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
9:30:09 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
          CSHB(L&C) 81-CONTRACTOR LICENSE ENFORCEMENT                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR RALPH SEEKINS announced HB 81 to be up for consideration.                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Mr.  JOHN   BITTNER,  staff   to  Representative   Tom  Anderson,                                                               
introduced the bill.  HB 81 is intended to  help enforce Alaska's                                                               
current laws.  Section 2  gives the Department  of Labor  and the                                                               
Division   of   Occupational   Licensing   authority   to   issue                                                               
administrative  fines for  violations of  the law.  Section 5  is                                                               
intended to  preserve Alaskans'  rights to  build their  own home                                                               
but  not aid  them  to become  unlicensed  contractors. The  time                                                               
limit between  building a residential property  would be extended                                                               
to two years.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
9:31:56 AM                                                                                                                    
Senator Hollis French joined the committee.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MR. BITTNER  stated the Alaska  State Home  Building Association,                                                               
the Association  of Builders and  Contractors, the  Department of                                                               
Labor   and   Workforce   Development,  and   the   Division   of                                                               
Occupational Licensing all support HB 81.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  CHARLIE HUGGINS  asked the  concerns of  the people  who                                                               
oppose HB 81.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
MR. BITTNER admitted there was  negative testimony, some of which                                                               
was  simple  misunderstanding  of  the bill.  Section  5  is  all                                                               
current statute except the change in Paragraph 12.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
9:33:56 AM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR  SEEKINS  asked  whether  a  person  is  allowed  to  start                                                               
construction on two different homes during the same time period.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
MR.  BITTNER said  the statute  limits construction  to one  home                                                               
every year. HB 81 would propose  to change this to one home every                                                               
two years.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  HUGGINS asked  whether  HB 81  restricts  building of  a                                                               
utility shed.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
MR. BITTNER answered no.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  HUGGINS asked  whether HB  81 restricts  building of  an                                                               
addition.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
MR. BITTNER answered no.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
9:36:08 AM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR FRENCH asked whether a 5-plex would apply to HB 81.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MR. BITTNER responded yes.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
9:37:00 AM                                                                                                                    
MR. DAVE  OWENS, owner, Owens  Inspection Services,  testified in                                                               
support of HB  81. The Mat-Su valley is  Alaska's fastest growing                                                               
area. There is a large  amount of owner/builders building single-                                                               
family homes  for resale, often  with no  warranty and not  up to                                                               
professional standards. These people  are competing with licensed                                                               
contractors.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
9:38:56 AM                                                                                                                    
MR. PATRICK DALTON  testified in opposition of HB 81.  He said he                                                               
has 25 years  of experience in the  residential building industry                                                               
working   mostly  for   homeowners.   HB   81  violates   certain                                                               
fundamental rights and liberties  contained in Article 1, Section                                                               
1 of  the Alaska State  Constitution. HB  81 seeks to  hinder the                                                               
rights of two  classes of people in order to  support one class -                                                               
the contractors.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
9:40:59 AM                                                                                                                    
MR.  DALTON suggested  HB 81  is approaching  a problem  from the                                                               
wrong  angle. If  the state  is  concerned about  the quality  of                                                               
houses they should enforce building inspection and codes.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
9:42:41 AM                                                                                                                    
MR. MIKE MUSICK, owner, Ester  Construction, and president of the                                                               
Interior Alaska Builders Association,  testified in support of HB                                                               
81. He  claimed the  people speaking against  HB 81  are breaking                                                               
the law.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
9:44:58 AM                                                                                                                    
MR. WALLY  SMITH, owner, Smith Alaska  Construction, testified in                                                               
support of HB  81. He informed his contracts vary  from $50,000 -                                                               
$250,000. HB 81  does not change existing law  it simply provides                                                               
active enforcement of the law.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
9:46:32 AM                                                                                                                    
MR. STEVE  GOCHIS, Cut Above Contracting,  questioned the outcome                                                               
when an  unlicensed builder gets injured.  Construction companies                                                               
are  required to  carry compensation,  liability, and  disability                                                               
policies. He asked who is  responsible if an uninsured contractor                                                               
gets injured  on a homeowner's  property. He suggested  the state                                                               
and  the taxpayers  would have  to  pick up  tab. He  said it  is                                                               
getting  harder to  play by  the rules  because people  are doing                                                               
large projects and unfairly competing with contractors.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
9:48:30 AM                                                                                                                    
MR.  DAVE DILLARD,  builder, 3-2-1  construction, testified  that                                                               
workman's  compensation  is getting  out  of  hand and  liability                                                               
policies  are escalating.  He suggested  the handyman  provides a                                                               
necessary function  so long  as they stay  limited to  the $5,000                                                               
project.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
9:51:21 AM                                                                                                                    
MR. TERRY DUSZYNKI, home inspector,  testified in favor of HB 81.                                                               
He  said the  state  should  to do  something  to  curb the  non-                                                               
licensed homebuilder.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
9:52:48 AM                                                                                                                    
MR. TODD LARKIN testified both sides  agree on the better part of                                                               
the bill.  He said  he has  no desire to  build above  the $5,000                                                               
limit  but has  a desire  to do  all manner  of work  within that                                                               
limit for any customer he  pleases. He asserted HB 81 effectively                                                               
outlaws independent laborers on  all major construction sites. HB                                                               
81 would  outlaw the act of  accepting small amounts of  work. HB                                                               
81  installs massive  enforcement methods  against those  who are                                                               
simply earning a living. The  accused should have the same rights                                                               
as a person awarded a  traffic ticket. The department should have                                                               
to provide  some type of  legal proof to  fine a person  $1,500 a                                                               
day for  going to  work. Years  of state red  tape have  made the                                                               
contractors situation  bad, but  instead of fixing  the situation                                                               
they have  chosen to  make someone  else's life  just as  bad. He                                                               
asked why  the backers and  legislators are so intent  on kicking                                                               
independent  laborers off  every substantial  job site  in Alaska                                                               
and taking their right to trial away.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
9:57:06 AM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR  FRENCH  asked  Mr.  Larkin why  Section  5  Paragraph  8                                                               
wouldn't cover an independent laborer.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
MR. LARKIN responded  a handyman would not be allowed  to work on                                                               
a  project where  the total  value is  larger than  $5,000. If  a                                                               
person  even assists  on  a  project undertaken  by  the same  or                                                               
different  contractor   they  will   be  under   the  enforcement                                                               
measures.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
9:58:51 AM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR FRENCH  said as he  reads Paragraph  (8) he does  not see                                                               
how  the  independent laborer  can't  do  more than  one  project                                                               
provided they  are each  less than $5,000.  He asked  Mr. Bittner                                                               
how HB 81 treats independent laborers.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
10:01:14 AM                                                                                                                   
MR.  BITTNER  said  the  specific   provision  does  not  address                                                               
independent  laborers.  HB  81  is  enforcing  current  law  with                                                               
respect to  independent laborers. Mr.  Larkin is correct  that he                                                               
cannot work  for a contractor on  a larger job. The  issue has to                                                               
do with insurance purposes.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  FRENCH  advised  Mr.  Larkin  that HB  81  is  aimed  at                                                               
contractors.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. LARKIN explained  Paragraph (8) is specifically  aimed at the                                                               
8101-license holder.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  FRENCH reported  HB  81 is  related  to contractors.  He                                                               
asked Mr. Larkin how an  independent laborer could fall under the                                                               
contractor classification.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
MR. LARKIN  asserted because of  the way the work  is classified.                                                               
The law could interpret the laborer is contracting his labor.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  SEEKINS   disputed  Mr.  Larkin's   logic  and   said  the                                                               
contractor's worker's  compensation company would  categorize the                                                               
laborer as an employee.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
MR.  LARKIN  responded  workman's   compensation  does  not  have                                                               
anything to  do with HB  81. He  said the fact  is he is  a self-                                                               
employed  independent laborer  with  multiple  customers. He  has                                                               
confirmed  through  legal  channels that  his  interpretation  is                                                               
correct and  he would immediately  be subject  to fines if  HB 81                                                               
were to pass into law.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
10:04:57 AM                                                                                                                   
Senator Gretchen Guess joined the committee.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
10:05:19 AM                                                                                                                   
MR.  GREY   MITCHELL,  director,   Labor  Standards   and  Safety                                                               
Division, Department of Labor  and Workforce Development (DOLWD),                                                               
explained the  positive thing  associated with HB  81 is  that it                                                               
streamlines enforcement.  He explained if an  independent laborer                                                               
were  found to  be  working  on a  job  that  exceeded $5,000  in                                                               
aggregate value, he  could be charged with a  class B misdemeanor                                                               
with  a $2,000  penalty  and  possible jail  time.  HB  81 is  an                                                               
attempt  to  take  out  the  criminal  penalty  and  make  it  an                                                               
administrative  fine.  There will  be  a  hearing process,  which                                                               
would allow for an appeal to the courts if necessary.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
10:07:17 AM                                                                                                                   
CHAIR  SEEKINS stated  HB 81  would also  stop a  contractor from                                                               
being  able to  hire many  people to  do several  individual jobs                                                               
valued  at $4,999  each in  order to  avoid having  to cover  the                                                               
people  with insurance  protection and  all the  other laws  that                                                               
pertain to having employees.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. MITCHELL agreed.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR FRENCH  said the independent laborers  are concerned with                                                               
violating  AS   08.18.011,  which   says  laborers  have   to  be                                                               
registered. He  asked Mr.  Mitchell whether  the DOLWF  is mainly                                                               
concerned with them being registered.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
MR. MITCHELL said yes.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR FRENCH asked the cost of registering.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
MR.  MITCHELL   explained  a  two-year   license  is   $200.  The                                                               
difference  is the  insurance  and bonding.  He  said Mr.  Larkin                                                               
would like to be able to work  on projects up to $5,000 on bigger                                                               
jobs. That  is a  specialty contractor and  they are  required to                                                               
carry a  $5,000 bond  and basic  liability coverage  for property                                                               
damage or injuries.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
10:10:44 AM                                                                                                                   
SENATOR FRENCH asked Mr. Larkin for his perspective.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MR. LARKIN asserted  what Mr. Mitchell said was  untrue. There is                                                               
no option  whatsoever for an  independent laborer to  register as                                                               
an  independent  laborer/contractor  because  there  is  no  such                                                               
thing. He said he does not  want a specialty because currently he                                                               
can  be hired  for a  myriad of  things that  don't fall  under a                                                               
specialty. He  stated HB 81 is  odious because he will  be forced                                                               
to pick one trade and be isolated to it.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
10:12:46 AM                                                                                                                   
SENATOR FRENCH said Mr. Larkin  makes a valid point. He suggested                                                               
another exemption under AS 08.18.161.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  SEEKINS  speculated about  the  possibility  for abuse.  A                                                               
contractor could  have several independent laborers  working on a                                                               
job  none  of whom  have  any  liability  for their  actions.  He                                                               
expressed concern that would be the future business model.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
MR. LARKIN  commented the business  model Chair  Seekins detailed                                                               
would not be logistically possible.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
10:15:30 AM                                                                                                                   
MR. BRENT  LAVALLE, construction lender, testified  in support of                                                               
HB  81. He  said  he  has seen  licensing  laws  get skirted.  He                                                               
expressed  concern  that some  lenders  such  as Fannie  Mae  and                                                               
Freddy Mac do not require finished product inspections.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
10:17:48 AM                                                                                                                   
MR. RANDY  DOLL, owner, Set  Builders Incorporated,  testified he                                                               
initially was for HB  81 but is now against the  bill. He said he                                                               
currently  employs  8-10  people  but he  could  turn  them  into                                                               
handymen  and save  20 percent.  He could  continue to  build the                                                               
homes and have no liability or warranty on the houses.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
10:19:40 AM                                                                                                                   
MR. DAN  FOLTZ, rental owner,  testified he uses the  handyman to                                                               
do apartment renovations. He said he  would not be able to find a                                                               
contractor  to do  the  job for  less than  $5,000.  He also  has                                                               
projects that  are long-term  and costs  exceed well  over $5,000                                                               
but  he does  them  in  increments he  can  afford.  He has  used                                                               
contractors  in the  past and  has had  problems that  had to  be                                                               
resolved  in court.  He expressed  support for  the handyman  but                                                               
said the $5,000 limit is too small.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
10:21:28 AM                                                                                                                   
MR. BOB HERTING, owner, Eureka  Builders, testified in support of                                                               
HB 81. He has been building  homes since 1977 and carries all the                                                               
necessary insurance and  bonding. He said HB 81 acts  in the best                                                               
interest of the consumer.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
10:22:43 AM                                                                                                                   
MR.  JEFF DESMIT,  licensed builder,  represented 160  members of                                                               
the  Southeast Alaska  Builders Association.  He asserted  people                                                               
operating  below  the  licensing  laws  put  contractors  out  of                                                               
business.  He was  troubled  to hear  testimony  from people  who                                                               
admit they  are operating  out of  the law. He  stated he  is not                                                               
against legitimate  handymen so  long as  they operate  under the                                                               
current statutes.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
10:27:43 AM                                                                                                                   
MR. DESMIT  claimed the current  crisis with insurance is  due to                                                               
unlicensed builders.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
10:28:29 AM                                                                                                                   
MR. ALLAN  WILSON, builder and  legislative co-chair  Alaska Home                                                               
Building   Association,  said   the  Association   requested  the                                                               
legislation.  They see  many complaints  of individuals  building                                                               
multiple  homes essentially  acting  as  contractors but  calling                                                               
themselves homeowner/builders.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
10:30:58 AM                                                                                                                   
MR. WILSON  agreed with the  $5,000 limit for  licensed laborers.                                                               
He said it compares with Oregon and Washington.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  SEEKINS  closed  public  testimony.   He  held  HB  81  in                                                               
committee.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
       CSHB 116(JUD)-LIABILITY FOR ALCOHOL LAW VIOLATIONS                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
10:33:39 AM                                                                                                                   
CHAIR RALPH SEEKINS announced HB  116 to be up for consideration.                                                               
He asserted the intent of the  legislation was to ensure no minor                                                               
could be charged  as a result of participating  in an enforcement                                                               
action. He proposed to add a retrospective action to HB 116.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  HOLLIS FRENCH  referred  to a  letter to  Representative                                                               
Kevin  Meyer  from  the  Alcohol  Beverage  Board  identifying  a                                                               
defense of public duty clause.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
10:35:59 AM                                                                                                                   
CHAIR SEEKINS  moved Amendment 1  to SCS  CSHB 116 Version  \Y to                                                               
include that the  Act applies retrospectively to  all actions and                                                               
proceedings under AS 04.16.049 or 04.16.060 that are not                                                                        
determined by final judgment before the effective date of HB                                                                    
116.                                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR GRETCHEN GUESS objected for discussion. She asked for an                                                                
immediate effective date.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEEKINS agreed.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Senator Guess removed her objection.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Amendment 1 was adopted unanimously.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
10:37:45 AM                                                                                                                   
SENATOR CHARLIE HUGGINS moved SCS CSHB 116(JUD) from committee                                                                  
with individual recommendations and attached fiscal note(s).                                                                    
There being no objection, the motion carried.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Chair Seekins recessed the meeting to the call of the chair at                                                                  
10:39:08 AM.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                

Document Name Date/Time Subjects