Legislature(2005 - 2006)BUTROVICH 205

04/28/2006 09:30 AM JUDICIARY


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* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
-- Recessed to 12:30 pm --
-- Time Change --
+ SB 169 WORKERS' COMPENSATION RECORDS TELECONFERENCED
Moved CSSB 169(JUD) Out of Committee
+= SB 307 LANDLORD REMEDIES; LATE FEE TELECONFERENCED
Moved CSSB 307(JUD) Out of Committee
+= SB 316 COURT REVIEW OF STRANDED GAS DECISION TELECONFERENCED
Moved CSSB 316(JUD) Out of Committee
+= HB 414 INTERCEPTION OF MINOR'S COMMUNICATIONS TELECONFERENCED
Scheduled But Not Heard
+= HB 190 REQUIRED ID FOR PURCHASING ALCOHOL TELECONFERENCED
Scheduled But Not Heard
                    ALASKA STATE LEGISLATURE                                                                                  
              SENATE JUDICIARY STANDING COMMITTEE                                                                             
                         April 28, 2006                                                                                         
                           10:20 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                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
SENATE BILL NO. 169                                                                                                             
"An  Act  relating  to  release   of  information  in  individual                                                               
workers' compensation records for commercial purposes."                                                                         
     MOVED CSSB 169(JUD) OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
SENATE BILL NO. 307                                                                                                             
"An Act  relating to a fee  provided for in the  rental agreement                                                               
for late payment  of rent under the  Uniform Residential Landlord                                                               
and Tenant Act."                                                                                                                
     MOVED CSSB 307(JUD) OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
SENATE BILL NO. 316                                                                                                             
"An  Act amending  the  Alaska Stranded  Gas  Development Act  to                                                               
eliminate  the opportunity  for judicial  review of  the findings                                                               
and determination  of the  commissioner of  revenue on  which are                                                               
based legislative review for a  proposed contract for payments in                                                               
lieu of taxes  and for the other purposes described  in that Act;                                                               
and providing for an effective date."                                                                                           
     MOVED CSSB 316(JUD) OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 414(RLS) am                                                                                               
"An   Act   relating  to   the   interception   of  the   private                                                               
communications of a minor."                                                                                                     
     SCHEDULED BUT NOT HEARD                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 190(FIN)                                                                                                  
"An Act  relating to the  purchase of alcoholic beverages  and to                                                               
access  to licensed  premises; relating  to  civil liability  for                                                               
certain persons  accessing licensed premises;  requiring driver's                                                               
licenses and  identification cards  to be marked  if a  person is                                                               
restricted from  consuming alcoholic beverages  as a result  of a                                                               
conviction or  condition of probation  or parole and  relating to                                                               
fees  for the  marked license;  and requiring  the surrender  and                                                               
cancellation of driver's licenses under certain circumstances."                                                                 
     SCHEDULED BUT NOT HEARD                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
PREVIOUS COMMITTEE ACTION                                                                                                     
BILL: SB 169                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE: WORKERS' COMPENSATION RECORDS                                                                                      
SPONSOR(s): SENATOR(s) THERRIAULT                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
04/11/05       (S)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
04/11/05       (S)       L&C                                                                                                    
04/19/05       (S)       L&C AT 1:30 PM BELTZ 211                                                                               
04/19/05       (S)       Moved CSSB 169(L&C) Out of Committee                                                                   
04/19/05       (S)       MINUTE(L&C)                                                                                            
04/20/05       (S)       L&C RPT CS 4DP NEW TITLE                                                                               
04/20/05       (S)       DP: BUNDE, DAVIS, ELLIS, STEVENS B                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
BILL: SB 307                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE: LANDLORD REMEDIES; LATE FEE                                                                                        
SPONSOR(s): LABOR & COMMERCE                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
02/23/06       (S)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
02/23/06       (S)       L&C, JUD                                                                                               
03/09/06       (S)       L&C AT 1:30 PM BELTZ 211                                                                               
03/09/06       (S)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
03/09/06       (S)       MINUTE(L&C)                                                                                            
03/16/06       (S)       L&C AT 1:30 PM BELTZ 211                                                                               
03/16/06       (S)       Scheduled But Not Heard                                                                                
03/28/06       (S)       L&C AT 1:30 PM BELTZ 211                                                                               
03/28/06       (S)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
03/28/06       (S)       MINUTE(L&C)                                                                                            
03/30/06       (S)       L&C AT 1:30 PM BELTZ 211                                                                               
03/30/06       (S)       Moved SB 307 Out of Committee                                                                          
03/30/06       (S)       MINUTE(L&C)                                                                                            
03/31/06       (S)       L&C RPT 2DP 1NR 2AM                                                                                    
03/31/06       (S)       DP: BUNDE, STEVENS B                                                                                   
03/31/06       (S)       NR: DAVIS                                                                                              
03/31/06       (S)       AM: ELLIS, SEEKINS                                                                                     
04/19/06       (S)       JUD AT 8:30 AM BUTROVICH 205                                                                           
04/19/06       (S)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
04/19/06       (S)       MINUTE(JUD)                                                                                            
04/25/06       (S)       JUD AT 8:30 AM BUTROVICH 205                                                                           
04/25/06       (S)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
04/25/06       (S)       MINUTE(JUD)                                                                                            
04/27/06       (S)       JUD AT 8:30 AM BUTROVICH 205                                                                           
04/27/06       (S)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
04/27/06       (S)       MINUTE(JUD)                                                                                            
04/28/06       (S)       JUD AT 9:30 AM BUTROVICH 205                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
BILL: SB 316                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE: COURT REVIEW OF STRANDED GAS DECISION                                                                              
SPONSOR(s): JUDICIARY                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
04/13/06       (S)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
04/13/06       (S)       JUD                                                                                                    
04/19/06       (S)       JUD AT 8:30 AM BUTROVICH 205                                                                           
04/19/06       (S)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
04/19/06       (S)       MINUTE(JUD)                                                                                            
04/20/06       (S)       JUD AT 8:30 AM BUTROVICH 205                                                                           
04/20/06       (S)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
04/20/06       (S)       MINUTE(JUD)                                                                                            
04/21/06       (S)       JUD AT 9:30 AM BUTROVICH 205                                                                           
04/21/06       (S)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
04/21/06       (S)       MINUTE(JUD)                                                                                            
04/22/06       (S)       JUD AT 9:30 AM BUTROVICH 205                                                                           
04/22/06       (S)       -- Continued from 04/20/06 --                                                                          
04/25/06       (S)       JUD AT 8:30 AM BUTROVICH 205                                                                           
04/25/06       (S)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
04/25/06       (S)       MINUTE(JUD)                                                                                            
04/26/06       (S)       JUD AT 8:30 AM BUTROVICH 205                                                                           
04/26/06       (S)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
04/26/06       (S)       MINUTE(JUD)                                                                                            
04/27/06       (S)       JUD AT 8:30 AM BUTROVICH 205                                                                           
04/27/06       (S)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
04/27/06       (S)       MINUTE(JUD)                                                                                            
04/28/06       (S)       JUD AT 9:30 AM BUTROVICH 205                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
WITNESS REGISTER                                                                                                              
Heather Brakes, Legislative Aide                                                                                                
Staff to Senator Gene Therriault                                                                                                
Alaska State Capitol                                                                                                            
Juneau, AK 99801-1182                                                                                                           
POSITION STATEMENT:  Introduced SB 169                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Paul Lisankie, Director                                                                                                         
Division of Worker's Compensation                                                                                               
Department of Labor & Workforce Development                                                                                     
PO Box 21149                                                                                                                    
Juneau, AK 99802-1149                                                                                                           
POSITION STATEMENT:  Responded to questions regarding SB 169                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Kris Norosz, Government Relations                                                                                               
Icicle Seafoods                                                                                                                 
       st                                                                                                                       
4019 21 Ave W                                                                                                                   
Seattle, Wa  98199                                                                                                              
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in support of SB 169                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Jack Chenoweth, Attorney                                                                                                        
Legal and Research Services Division                                                                                            
Legislative Affairs Agency                                                                                                      
Alaska State Capitol                                                                                                            
Juneau, AK  99801-1182                                                                                                          
POSITION STATEMENT:  Answered questions regarding SB 316                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Kevin Jardell, Legislative Director                                                                                             
Staff to Governor Frank Murkowski                                                                                               
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Answered questions regarding SB 316                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Larry Ostrovsky, Chief Assistant Attorney General                                                                               
Oil and Gas Section                                                                                                             
Department of Law                                                                                                               
PO Box 110300                                                                                                                   
Juneau, AK  99811-0300                                                                                                          
POSITION STATEMENT:  Answered questions regarding SB 316                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Jane Alberts, Legislative Aide                                                                                                  
Staff to Senator Con Bunde                                                                                                      
Alaska State Capitol                                                                                                            
Juneau, AK 99801-1182                                                                                                           
POSITION STATEMENT:  Introduced SB 307                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Robert Maier                                                                                                                    
Alaska Manufactured Housing Association                                                                                         
No address provided                                                                                                             
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in support of SB 307                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
ACTION NARRATIVE                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR RALPH SEEKINS called the Senate Judiciary Standing                                                                      
Committee meeting to order at 10:20:06 AM. Present were Senators                                                              
Gene Therriault, Hollis French, and Chair Ralph Seekins.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEEKINS recessed the meeting to the call of the chair at                                                                  
10:20:45 AM.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  SEEKINS reconvened  the meeting  at  12:46:21 PM.  Present                                                             
were  Senators   Gretchen  Guess,   Charlie  Huggins,   and  Gene                                                               
Therriault. Senator Hollis French will join the meeting shortly.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
              SB 169-WORKERS' COMPENSATION RECORDS                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
12:46:21 PM                                                                                                                   
CHAIR RALPH SEEKINS announced SB 169 to be up for consideration.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  GENE THERRIAULT  announced that  committee aide  Heather                                                               
Brakes would explain the basic issues of the bill.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR HOLLIS FRENCH joined the meeting.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
HEATHER BRAKES,  Staff to Senator  Therriault, explained  that SB                                                               
169  would amend  the workers'  compensation statutes  to clarify                                                               
that  the  Division  of Workers'  Compensation  may  not  release                                                               
personal information  for commercial purposes. The  Department of                                                               
Law has suggested additional language that  is not in the bill as                                                               
of yet but  the sponsor is putting that  together. The additional                                                               
language  would  direct the  Department  of  Labor and  Workforce                                                               
Development to keep the records of injured workers secure.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
12:50:37 PM                                                                                                                   
PAUL  LISANKIE,  Director,  Division  of  Workers'  Compensation,                                                               
Department of Labor and  Workforce Development (DOLWD), testified                                                               
that SB 169  was a provision that  was in SB 130  and passed last                                                               
year but  was necessary legislation  today due to a  lawsuit that                                                               
received its  opinion two weeks  ago [O'Bryan Baun  Cohen Kuebler                                                               
versus  Paul  F.  Lisankie,  Director  of  Division  of  Workers'                                                               
Compensation,  Department  of  Labor and  Workforce  Development,                                                               
State  of Alaska,  John  Does  1-10, Employees  of  the State  of                                                               
Alaska].                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
MR.  LISANKIE explained  that the  bill would  exempt release  of                                                               
certain individual information of  injured workers that the DOLWD                                                               
requires them  to file  as part of  getting their  benefits. Over                                                               
the years the  DOLWD has seen requests for lists  of every person                                                               
who has filed for workers' compensation in the State of Alaska.                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
12:52:59 PM                                                                                                                   
Information can be used for good  or ill depending on the intent,                                                               
he said. The Department originally  suggested the statute use the                                                               
phrase "for commercial  purposes" so that the  worker wouldn't be                                                               
prevented an avenue  of help in defending their  claim. The court                                                               
opposes that language and so  the Department has an amendment for                                                               
the committee to consider.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
12:56:16 PM                                                                                                                   
SENATOR  FRENCH  asked  whether   the  proposed  amendment  would                                                               
prohibit release of names of employees that work for the state.                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MR.  LISANKIE said  he believed  that  since it's  linked to  the                                                               
employee   file   maintained   by  the   Division   of   Workers'                                                               
Compensation  that it  would be  limited and  not that  broad. He                                                               
understood  that any  medical  record housed  at  the DOLWD  that                                                               
contained  personal information  would not  be subject  to public                                                               
inspection except as laid out in paragraphs (1-2).                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  SEEKINS  asked  Mr.  Lisankie  whether  he  discussed  the                                                               
amendment with the DOL and  whether it addressed the ambiguity in                                                               
the statute.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. LISANKIE  said it would  erase the ambiguity relating  to the                                                               
phrase "commercial purposes."                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
1:00:24 PM                                                                                                                    
KRIS  NOROSZ, Representative  for Icicle  Seafoods, testified  in                                                               
support of the bill.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  THERRIAULT moved  Amendment  1.  Hearing no  objections,                                                               
Amendment 1 was adopted.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR GRETCHEN GUESS moved CSSB  169(JUD) out of committee with                                                               
individual recommendations and attached  fiscal notes. Hearing no                                                               
objections, the motion carried.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
          SB 316-COURT REVIEW OF STRANDED GAS DECISION                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
1:09:27 PM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR RALPH SEEKINS announced SB 316 to be up for consideration.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR CHARLIE HUGGINS  moved version L as  the working document                                                               
before  the  committee.  Hearing  no objections  version  CS  was                                                               
adopted.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  SEEKINS  walked  through  the  changes  to  each  section.                                                               
Section 1  assures that the  documents are a public  record after                                                               
the commissioner of the Department  of Revenue (DOR) gives public                                                               
notice.  Section  2   affects  AS  43.82.400  and   says  if  the                                                               
commissioner  develops a  contract s/he  should make  preliminary                                                               
findings and a determination that  the proposed contract meet the                                                               
long-term fiscal interest  of the state and whether  it meets the                                                               
requirements and purposes  of the Chapter. Section  3 states that                                                               
30 days  after close  of public  comment period  the commissioner                                                               
shall prepare a summary.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
1:13:11 PM                                                                                                                    
Section 4  affects AS  43.82.430(b) and is  amended to  read that                                                               
after  the commissioner  makes his  determination he  submits the                                                               
contract to the governor.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR HOLLIS  FRENCH asked  the reason for  the change  to that                                                               
section.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR   SEEKINS  responded   it  was   more  definite   that  the                                                               
commissioner first had to find that  it was in the long-term best                                                               
interest. He could  not submit the contract  until that provision                                                               
was met.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
1:15:05 PM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR SEEKINS Section 5:                                                                                                        
Legislative  authorization.  (a)  The  governor  may  transmit  a                                                               
contract  developed   under  this  chapter  to   the  legislature                                                               
together  with  a  request  for   authorization  to  execute  the                                                               
contract. He continued reading the entire section.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
1:17:34 PM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR GENE  THERRIAULT noted that  Section 5 was  permissive on                                                               
the part of the governor.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEEKINS agreed and said it is not required.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  FRENCH  commented  that  subsection  (d)  maintains  the                                                               
legislative involvement.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Section  6,  Judicial Review,  is  amended  to emphasize  that  a                                                               
person may not bring a challenge until the contract is executed.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
1:19:36 PM                                                                                                                    
Section 7 and 8 are effective dates and clean up, he said.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR FRENCH  said Section 7  might be superfluous  because the                                                               
bill  is  maintaining the  DOR  as  the  "legal flagpole  to  the                                                               
world."                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  SEEKINS   said  Section  7  just   eliminates  the  agency                                                               
decisions.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR FRENCH  restated his point.  Now that the bill  keeps the                                                               
final  findings  and determination  of  the  commissioner as  the                                                               
thing   that  is   challengeable,  keeping   subsection  (c)   in                                                               
harmonizes with the judicial review.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEEKINS announced a brief at ease at 1:23:11 PM.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
1:32:15 PM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR SEEKINS asked the drafter of the bill to testify.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR FRENCH asked  Mr. Chenoweth whether Section  7 belongs in                                                               
the bill.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
JACK  CHENOWETH,  Attorney,  Legal  Services, said  in  1998  the                                                               
determination that  the final findings  would be an  final agency                                                               
action was  included to indicate  that is  the point at  which an                                                               
administrative adjudication  may be  commenced.   The Legislature                                                               
added  the  requirement  of legislative  review.  When  that  was                                                               
added,  the  final  findings and  determination  language  became                                                               
extraneous  because the  legislature's roll  was postponed.  That                                                               
was  the  reason  that  the   administration  was  interested  in                                                               
eliminating subsection (c) since  the legislature had post review                                                               
responsibility.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MR. CHENOWETH said, "If you  agree with the administration's view                                                               
of this  then I  think you  probably do want  to take  out 430(c)                                                               
because you  are still  allowing for judicial  review of  a final                                                               
findings and determination."                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
1:36:04 PM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR  FRENCH  said he  agreed  with  the administration  about                                                               
moving  the  timing  of  the  challenge but  stated  he  is  very                                                               
protective and  concerned about restricting  any rights  that the                                                               
public  has to  bringing a  challenge  to the  contract. He  also                                                               
expressed concern  over a separation of  powers challenge brought                                                               
eventually to the legislature's authority  to execute. He said he                                                               
wants to take a "belt and  suspenders" approach so as to keep all                                                               
the rights in existence.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
1:37:58 PM                                                                                                                    
MR. CHENOWETH  responded the committee  should make sure  that in                                                               
leaving the  authority in  the law for  someone to  challenge the                                                               
final findings and determination, that  they do so without making                                                               
it  dependant  on  an  action   of  the  Legislature  authorizing                                                               
execution of the contract.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR FRENCH asked him to  explain the reason that is important                                                               
if it is only a matter of timing.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
MR. CHENOWETH  explained it has  been a historical  position from                                                               
the DOL that the Legislature has  no roll in the determination of                                                               
what contracts  should be  executed. It  was surprising  that the                                                               
Knowles administration  was willing to accept  legislative action                                                               
to authorize the  contract. His review of  the dialogue indicated                                                               
that  the  commissioner  of  the DOR  was  comfortable  with  the                                                               
legislative    authorization   back    in   1998    because   the                                                               
administration realized  that providing  for payments in  lieu of                                                               
tax [the principle  element of the SGDA] was  breaking new ground                                                               
in law.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
In setting that  out, the administration would  be intruding upon                                                               
authority generally  given to the  Legislature to  determine what                                                               
the tax policy of the state would  be and how to spend the money.                                                               
Consequently  the  commissioner felt  it  was  best to  have  the                                                               
Legislature aboard.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
1:42:04 PM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR FRENCH  said he  is left  wondering what  to do  with the                                                               
bill to  maintain every  possible legal  challenge, as  it exists                                                               
under the current law.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
MR. CHENOWETH  said leave 120 days  to bring an action.  That 120                                                               
days may be tied to execution  of the contract but that execution                                                               
may or  may not be  on the  basis of a  legislative authorization                                                               
given by law.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR FRENCH said it sounds like  that what needs to be done is                                                               
to have  a buffer of  time granted  to the Legislature  when they                                                               
are making their decision.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
MR. CHENOWETH responded:                                                                                                        
     If the  concern is  the separation  of powers-generated                                                                    
     objection to  the Legislature having  a role in  all of                                                                    
     this, then  the final findings and  determination would                                                                    
     be the  step preceding the governor's  execution of the                                                                    
     contract. If that  is the case you have a  law in place                                                                    
     that says the judicial  review should occur within some                                                                    
     period of  time from execution of  the contract without                                                                    
     making any  reference to the  legal authority  for that                                                                    
     execution.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
1:44:27 PM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR  SEEKINS asked  who would  have  the standings  to bring  a                                                               
constitutional challenge regarding separation of powers.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
MR.  CHENOWETH advised  that there  would  be a  wide variety  of                                                               
potential claimants would have standing to proceed.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEEKINS  said, "But if  the governor doesn't  challenge it,                                                               
he is the  other branch of government whose powers  have now been                                                               
violated  by the  requirement  for  legislative authorization  to                                                               
execute the contract. Can John Q. Public bring that action?"                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. CHENOWETH asked, "Who would be the defendant?"                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  SEEKINS   said,  "I  guess   it  would  have  to   be  the                                                               
Legislature."                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
MR. CHENOWETH  said the Legislature  can't get sued, even  by the                                                               
governor. The person  who raises the question of  right and wrong                                                               
could be the Legislature or anyone else.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
1:46:13 PM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR SEEKINS asked whether the  requirement that the Legislature                                                               
execute  the  contract  diminishes  the powers  of  the  governor                                                               
granted under the Constitution.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MR. CHENOWETH responded  that it is a good argument  and it seems                                                               
like something the Legislature has the right to do.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEEKINS  said every portion  of a  law is severable  and if                                                               
this portion of  the law [43.82.435] was challenged  in court and                                                               
found  to be  unconstitutional, that  action would  have to  have                                                               
commenced within 120 days of the contract.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
MR. CHENOWETH agreed.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
1:48:08 PM                                                                                                                    
MR.  CHENOWETH said  the administration's  argument  is that  the                                                               
responsibility  for negotiation  and  execution  of contracts  is                                                               
wholly an administrative function  under the separation of powers                                                               
and  should be  retained in  the  executive branch.  That is  the                                                               
starting point  of the argument they  would make if they  were to                                                               
change to go forward without the benefit of legislative input.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR THERRIAULT said that is  the only time the constitutional                                                               
issue rears its  head: if the Legislature gives  approval and the                                                               
governor then signs the contract.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
1:50:31 PM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR SEEKINS  asked Mr. Chenoweth  whether they need  to specify                                                               
in statute that it is the decision that is appealable.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
MR. CHENOWETH said yes but there  is a question of placement with                                                               
relationship to the  legislative review of the  contract. He said                                                               
he  shared  the  committee's  concern   that  in  the  event  the                                                               
Legislature  refuses to  approve the  contract that  the governor                                                               
would execute it anyway.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEEKINS suggested  to avoid that perhaps  they should state                                                               
in statute that if for  some reason the legislative authorization                                                               
is   found  not   to  be   affected  that   these  findings   and                                                               
determinations are then final  agency decisions and independently                                                               
reviewable.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MR. CHENOWETH said, "Oh. Well. That is a way to do it."                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR THERRIAULT asked whether it  should to be so complicated.                                                               
He suggested the  committee make sure they preserve  the right of                                                               
the public to challenge and then "drag it to the end."                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
1:57:14 PM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR SEEKINS asked Larry Ostrovsky to comment.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
LARRY OSTROVSKY, Chief Assistant  Attorney General, Department of                                                               
Law (DOL), said Mr. Chenoweth has  more experience than he but he                                                               
speculated that the committee was on the right track.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  FRENCH said  the question  of  "what the  nature of  the                                                               
challenge  would   be"  is  still   unanswered  given   that  the                                                               
Legislature has substituted its judgment  for the judgment of the                                                               
commissioner in  granting authority  to execute the  contract. He                                                               
said  it  is  important  to  maintain  the  commissioner's  final                                                               
findings  and determination  as the  place where  a person  would                                                               
mount  a   challenge  because  he   didn't  think  there   was  a                                                               
challengeable part to the final finding of the Legislature.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
2:00:22 PM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR SEEKINS  asked Mr. Ostrovsky  whether the  committee should                                                               
change  43.82.440  to  the  final   agency  decisions  and  leave                                                               
subsection (c) in.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
MR.  OSTROVSKY  responded that  would  not  make any  substantive                                                               
difference but  said he'd be  curious to hear what  Mr. Chenoweth                                                               
would say.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
MR. CHENOWETH  commented that  he was  comfortable with  what the                                                               
committee wants to do.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  SEEKINS  said  their  primary  objective  is  to  put  any                                                               
challenge at  the end of the  process and to clearly  define what                                                               
happens if the process "goes kablooey."                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  THERRIAULT  clarified  that the  committee  intended  to                                                               
leave subsection (c)  in and change the language in  section 6 to                                                               
make reference to the final decision.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
2:03:09 PM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR THERRIAULT  moved Amendment 1.  On page 4 modify  the new                                                               
language on  lines 6-7 to  say "the final agency  decisions under                                                               
430(c)." Hearing no objections, Amendment 1 was adopted.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR THERRIAULT moved Amendment 2.                                                                                           
                                                      24-LS1842\I.1                                                             
                                                         Chenoweth                                                              
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
                      A M E N D M E N T 2                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
OFFERED IN THE SENATE                     BY SENATOR THERRIAULT                                                                 
     TO:  CSSB 316(   ), Draft Version "I"                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Page 1, line 6, following "enforceability":                                                                                   
     Insert "extending to 90 days the period during which the                                                                 
public and members  of the legislature may comment  on a proposed                                                             
contract under that Act;"                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Page 2, following line 12:                                                                                                      
     Insert a new bill section to read:                                                                                         
   "* Sec. 2. AS 43.82.410 is amended to read:                                                                              
          Sec. 43.82.410. Notice and comment regarding the                                                                    
     contract. The commissioner shall                                                                                         
               (1)  give reasonable public notice of the                                                                        
     preliminary   findings   and    determination   made   under                                                               
     AS 43.82.400;                                                                                                              
               (2)  make copies of the proposed contract, the                                                                   
     commissioner's preliminary findings and determination, and,                                                                
     to the extent the information is not required to be kept                                                                   
     confidential under  AS 43.82.310, the  supporting financial,                                                               
     technical,  and  market  data, including  the  work  papers,                                                               
     analyses,   and    recommendations   of    any   independent                                                               
     contractors used under AS 43.82.240  available to the public                                                               
     and to                                                                                                                     
                    (A)  the presiding officer of each house of                                                                 
          the legislature;                                                                                                      
                    (B)  the chairs of the finance and resources                                                                
          committees of the legislature; and                                                                                    
                    (C)  the chairs of the special committees on                                                                
          oil and gas, if any, of the legislature;                                                                              
               (3)  offer to appear before the Legislative                                                                      
     Budget  and  Audit  Committee to  provide  the  committee  a                                                               
     review  of  the   commissioner's  preliminary  findings  and                                                               
     determination,  the proposed  contract,  and the  supporting                                                               
     financial, technical,  and market  data; if  the Legislative                                                               
     Budget  and  Audit   Committee  accepts  the  commissioner's                                                               
     offer, the  committee shall give  notice of  the committee's                                                               
     meeting to  the public and  all members of  the legislature;                                                               
     if the financial,  technical, and market data that  is to be                                                               
     provided must  be kept confidential under  AS 43.82.310, the                                                               
     commissioner  may not  release the  confidential information                                                               
     during a public portion of a committee meeting; and                                                                        
               (4)  establish a period of at least 90 [ 30] days                                                            
     for the public and members  of the legislature to comment on                                                               
     the  proposed  contract  and the  preliminary  findings  and                                                               
     determination made under AS 43.82.400."                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Renumber the following bill sections accordingly.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Hearing no objections, Amendment 2 was adopted.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
2:08:41 PM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR SEEKINS  noted that Senator  Therriault's amendment  was in                                                               
reference to a  CS that no longer exists. He  clarified that this                                                               
would amend section  4 to extend the public comment  period to 90                                                               
days. It appears that the  administration is allowed to establish                                                               
when that time  frame begins. He asked Kevin  Jardell whether the                                                               
intent was  to start  the public comment  period the  moment that                                                               
the contract was released.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
KEVIN JARDELL, Legislative Director  for Governor Frank Murkowski                                                               
testified that  the intent  was the public  process to  begin the                                                               
day the contract  was released. A website would  be launched that                                                               
would accept  public comment  and would provide  for a  period of                                                               
ongoing dissemination.  The governor  intends to hold  the public                                                               
comment  period  for as  long  as  the  process takes  to  gather                                                               
thorough input from the public.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
2:13:48 PM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR SEEKINS asked  how the administration plans  to decide when                                                               
the public comment window ends.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MR. JARDELL replied  the administration would not  know until the                                                               
process  develops  but they  are  allowed  to extend  the  public                                                               
comment  period.  The  governor  would halt  the  public  comment                                                               
period when  it reaches the point  that all the points  have been                                                               
made.                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEEKINS asked what happens  if the governor doesn't get the                                                               
Legislature  a contract  after the  close of  the public  comment                                                               
period.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
MR. JARDELL said he did not know.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR THERRIAULT  speculated there would be  an ongoing process                                                               
responding to public  comment as they come in. It  is likely that                                                               
there will  be a turnaround a  few days directly after  the close                                                               
of the comment period.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR GRETCHEN  GUESS said  the way the  statute reads  is that                                                               
the things  to be done within  that 30 days are  the findings and                                                               
determinations, not the submitting of the contract.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
2:16:44 PM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR  SEEKINS  said the  way  that  subsection (b)  reads  since                                                               
amended states that the commissioner  submits the contract to the                                                               
governor within 30 days.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR GUESS disagreed but said it didn't matter.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
2:19:25 PM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR GUESS said, "We all hope  we see a contract this year but                                                               
life  is unpredictable  and so  we  are creating  a statute  that                                                               
                             th                                                                                                 
needs to go beyond us [the 24 Legislature]."                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEEKINS announced a brief recess at 2:22:24 PM.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
2:40:07 PM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR   SEEKINS  explained   to   the   committee  that   Senator                                                               
Therriault's conceptual amendment needed re-crafting.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR THERRIAULT  explained his amendment should  be altered to                                                               
denote a 90-day comment period.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR FRENCH spoke  in favor of the amendment. He  said the PPT                                                               
bill was  introduced 68 days ago  and could drag out  through the                                                               
end of  session, indicating how  long it sometimes takes  to work                                                               
through a law this substantial.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEEKINS clarified  that Amendment 2 would  specify a 90-day                                                               
comment period.  He moved to amend  Amendment 2 to read  60 days.                                                               
He  explained that  in effect,  the comment  period would  end up                                                               
with the equivalent of 90 days.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
2:45:03 PM                                                                                                                    
MR.  JARDELL  commented on  the  amendment  to Amendment  2.  The                                                               
public process is critically important  and so the administration                                                               
supports the 60-day period.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  GUESS  clarified   that  when  it  comes   back  to  the                                                               
Legislature in  special session, they  can take public  comment b                                                               
but  they  can't change  the  contract.  The ability  to  provide                                                               
feedback  to  the  administration  disappears  and  so  it  is  a                                                               
different  type  of  public  contract.  She  said  she  was  more                                                               
comfortable with the 90-day public comment period.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  HUGGINS and  SENATOR THERRIAULT  spoke in  favor of  the                                                               
amendment to Amendment 2.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEEKINS asked Mr. Jardell  whether the administration would                                                               
hold regularly scheduled public hearings during the process.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
2:49:02 PM                                                                                                                    
MR. JARDELL  said yes. It would  be a series of  meetings both in                                                               
communities and also using telecommunications.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEEKINS  said, "After the  public hearing process  is done,                                                               
will  it take  you  60-days  to get  through  the public  hearing                                                               
process?"                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
MR. JARDELL hesitated  to comment but speculated  a 45-day period                                                               
would  suffice to  hit  all  the communities  and  do the  entire                                                               
public process.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Hearing no  further objections to  the amendment to  Amendment 2,                                                               
the  committee  adopted  it unanimously.  The  committee  adopted                                                               
Amendment 2 unanimously as well.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
2:52:26 PM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR SEEKINS  noted that Mr.  Ostrovsky requested to  comment on                                                               
page 3, lines 24-25.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MR.  OSTROVSKY  suggested  that  the  committee  consider  adding                                                               
language  to  line  25  to  add   "to  the  extent  a  record  or                                                               
information  is not  required to  be kept  confidential under  AS                                                               
43.82.310, the material described in (1) of this subsection."                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
2:54:14 PM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR GUESS asked the practical application of the suggestion.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR HUGGINS  moved Amendment 3. Page  3, line 25 add  "to the                                                               
extent  a  record or  information  is  not  required to  be  kept                                                               
confidential under  AS 43.82.310,  the material described  in (1)                                                               
of this subsection."                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  FRENCH   objected  and   commented  43.82.310   has  six                                                               
subsections and  it looks  like subsection  (f) differs  from the                                                               
others. He asked Mr. Ostrovsky to comment.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEEKINS  said as  he understood 310(f),  it was  amended to                                                               
say  that  everything  that is  not  proprietary  becomes  public                                                               
information.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. CHENOWETH agreed.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
2:57:52 PM                                                                                                                    
Hearing no further objections, Amendment 3 was adopted.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  THERRIAULT asked  Mr. Chenoweth  whether  there was  any                                                               
impairment  of   contract  argument  due  to   timing  since  the                                                               
committee  moved the  public comment  period  to the  end of  the                                                               
process.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
MR. CHENOWETH responded the right  to the contract argument would                                                               
be during the period of time  that overlaps the 120 days in which                                                               
the appeals may  be brought. There is a  potential for impairment                                                               
but it  would have to be  action taken upon the  contract that is                                                               
executed. He advised the committee that was an area of concern.                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
3:02:09 PM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR THERRIAULT asked for an amendment suggestion.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
MR. CHENOWETH suggested the committee  tie the concept outside of                                                               
43.82.435.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR THERRIAULT  restated his  concern. He  said, "If  we move                                                               
that public comment  period to the end, what language  do we need                                                               
just to make sure that they in fact can exercise..."                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  SEEKINS  moved  Amendment 4.  Conceptually  speaking,  add                                                               
language on page 4, end of line 9 stating, "under this chapter."                                                                
                                                                                                                                
MR. CHENOWETH  added that  the committee would  want to  tie that                                                               
sentence to the contract.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
3:06:51 PM                                                                                                                    
Hearing no objections, Amendment 4 was adopted.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR GUESS  expressed concern that the  governor could execute                                                               
a contract that the Legislature did  not approve and that did not                                                               
meet the  requirements of  the Chapter.  She asked  whether there                                                               
was  anything  that   would  void  the  contract   and  give  the                                                               
Legislature  or anyone  else  the  ability to  take  it to  court                                                               
because it  didn't line  up to  the statute.  She said  this goes                                                               
back to her  point that the final findings  and determination are                                                               
whether  or not  the  proposed contract  and  amendment meet  the                                                               
requirements of the Chapter.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEEKINS  speculated that in  that event, the  very contract                                                               
would not meet  the requirements under the law and  would have to                                                               
be signed as a standard DNR contract.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
MR. CHENOWETH said he has a  different vision of the contract. He                                                               
said his  vision of  the contract  would be  one that  covers the                                                               
things that are identified in the  law, such as paying in lieu of                                                               
tax, timing and taking of royalty and local hire.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
3:12:34 PM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR GUESS  said as the  statute reads now, the  final finding                                                               
is only whether  or not the contract does comply  with state law,                                                               
not that it has to comply.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
MR.  CHENOWETH  said  that  is why  we  have  the  enforceability                                                               
provision. It must serve the purpose of arguing a challenge.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
3:14:43 PM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR  GUESS  said  the enforceability  clause  under  judicial                                                               
review goes back to  435 and if that gets thrown  out in court on                                                               
separation  of powers,  then where  are we  with ensuring  that a                                                               
contract actually meet the requirements of the statute.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
MR. CHENOWETH responded if the  legislative rolls falls out it is                                                               
still a question of whether the final findings are supportable.                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR HUGGINS  moved Amendment  5. Page 4,  line 10,  remove AS                                                               
43.82.435 and insert "this chapter."                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
3:19:20 PM                                                                                                                    
MR. CHENOWETH  said he wanted  clarification for the  record that                                                               
the committee  is doing this  because of an ongoing  concern that                                                               
the legislative authorization of 435  might be held not valid. He                                                               
said it  establishes a good  argument for the  Legislature's roll                                                               
in the contract.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEEKINS asked Mr. Ostrovsky to comment.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
MR. OSTROVSKY said, "No comment."                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEEKINS  recessed the meeting to  the call of the  chair at                                                               
3:24:56 PM.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
6:00:00 PM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR SEEKINS reconvened the meeting and asked for discussion.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  THERRIAULT  moved to  adopt  version  S as  the  working                                                               
document before the committee. Hearing  no objections, the motion                                                               
carried.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  GUESS moved  Amendment 1.  Page  1, line  9, insert  the                                                               
words  "at  least"   between  the  words  "to   60."  Hearing  no                                                               
objections, Amendment 1 was adopted.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR GUESS  moved Amendment  2. Page 5,  beginning of  line 6,                                                               
insert "(a)". Hearing no objections, Amendment 2 was adopted.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  HUGGINS   moved  CSSB   316(JUD)  from   committee  with                                                               
individual recommendations and attached  fiscal notes. Hearing no                                                               
objection, the motion carried.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
               SB 307-LANDLORD REMEDIES; LATE FEE                                                                           
                                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
6:07:16 PM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR RALPH SEEKINS announced SB 307 to be up for consideration.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
JANE ALBERTS, Staff to Senator  Con Bunde introduced the bill and                                                               
informed the committee of a committee substitute (CS).                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR GENE THERRIAULT  moved version F as  the working document                                                               
before the committee. Hearing no objections, the motion carried.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
MS. ALBERTS  said the  CS contains new  language, which  makes it                                                               
possible  for  the landlord  to  issue  a  single notice  or  two                                                               
separate notices for failure to pay  rent and failure to pay rent                                                               
fees. The judge would consider  each aspect of the dispute during                                                               
one hearing. The CS does allow  the tenant three more days to pay                                                               
the rent and the sponsor supports that.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
6:09:09 PM                                                                                                                    
ROBERT MAIER, Alaska  Manufactured Housing Association, testified                                                               
that version F  gets the bill back to the  original intent, which                                                               
is simplicity. He expressed support for the bill.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
MS. ALBERTS  advised that  Ed Sniffen was  online earlier  in the                                                               
day and was prepared to testify in support of the bill.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR HOLLIS  FRENCH opined the  bill was a  compromise between                                                               
the two ideas of a speedy hearing and the one hearing.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEEKINS closed public testimony.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  THERRIAULT  moved  CSSB  307(JUD)  from  committee  with                                                               
individual recommendations and attached  fiscal notes. Hearing no                                                               
objections the motion carried.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
There being  no further  business to  come before  the committee,                                                               
Chair Seekins adjourned the meeting at 6:14:13 PM.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                

Document Name Date/Time Subjects