Legislature(1993 - 1994)
04/26/1994 01:40 PM L&C
* first hearing in first committee of referral
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
SENATE LABOR AND COMMERCE April 26, 1994 1:40 P.M. MEMBERS PRESENT Senator Tim Kelly, Chairman Senator Steve Rieger, Vice Chairman Senator Bert Sharp Senator Georgianna Lincoln Senator Judith Salo MEMBERS ABSENT None COMMITTEE CALENDAR HOUSE JOINT RESOLUTION NO. 64 Relating to the projects of the Alaska Aerospace Development Corporation for satellite ground stations and a rocket launch facility. HOUSE BILL NO. 365 "An Act extending the termination date of the Board of Barbers and Hairdressers; and providing for an effective date." CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 277(JUD) "An Act relating to public employers defending and indemnifying public employees and former public employees with respect to claims arising out of conduct that is within the scope of employment." HOUSE BILL NO. 468 "An Act extending the termination date of the Citizens' Review Panel for Permanency Planning." CS FOR SPONSOR SUBSTITUTE FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 497(CRA)(title am) "An Act relating to the titles that describe the two principal executive officers of electric and telephone cooperatives." PREVIOUS ACTION HJR 64 - No previous action to record. HB 365 - No previous action to record. HB 277 - See State Affairs minutes dated 4/13/94. HB 468 - No previous action to record. HB 497 - See State Affairs minutes dated 4/11/94. WITNESS REGISTER Bob Krogseng, Legislative Aide c/o Representataive Jerry Sanders State Capitol Juneau, Ak. 99801-1182 POSITION STATEMENT: Commented on HB 365. Representative Jeanette James State Capitol Juneau, Ak. 99801-1182 POSITION STATEMENT: Supported HB 353. Representative Brian Porter State Capitol Juneau, Ak. 99801-1182 POSITION STATEMENT: Supported HB 277. ACTION NARRATIVE TAPE 94-32, SIDE A Number 001 CHAIRMAN KELLY called the Labor and Commerce meeting to order at 1:40 p.m. and announced HJR 64 (PROJECTS OF ALASKA AEROSPACE DEV. CORP.) to be up for consideration. He noted there was a $0 fiscal note. SENATOR RIEGER moved to pass HJR 64 from committee with individual recommendations. There were no objections and it was so ordered. SENATOR KELLY announced HB 365 (EXTEND BOARD OF BARBERS & HAIRDRESSERS) to be up for consideration. BOB KROGSENG, Legislative Aide to Representative Jerry Sanders, said the Board is presently operating in the one year extension period. SENATOR RIEGER moved to pass HB 365 from committee with individual recommendations. There were no objections and it was so ordered. SENATOR KELLY announced HB 353 (CONDOMINIUM ASSOCIATION MANAGEMENT) T) to be up for consideration. REPRESENTATIVE JEANETTE JAMES said this is a simple piece of legislation. She said this would require condominiums built before 1/1/86 to have an annual audit. Other association can adopt by- laws which will require an audit if they so choose. SENATOR RIEGER moved to pass HB 353 from committee with individual recommendations. There were no objections and it was so ordered. Number 120 SENATOR KELLY announced HB 277 (INDEMNIFICATION OF PUBLIC EMPLOYEES) to be up for consideration. REPRESENTATIVE BRIAN PORTER said HB 277 provides codification for state policy and for policy that exists in many other municipalities. It provides indemnification for public employees who, acting within the scope of their employment, omitted to perform something or performed something negligently and were sued. It will not indemnify an employee for gross negligence nor will it provide indemnification for punitive damages. He said HB 277 is supported by the Peace Officers Association, the Chiefs Association, and the Municipality of Anchorage. SENATOR RIEGER asked about the exemption if an employee has been terminated. REPRESENTATIVE PORTER said the action of terminating an employee to avoid the liability is covered in the bill, specifically. SENATOR RIEGER asked if he would object to that wording if it were removed. REPRESENTATIVE PORTER said he wouldn't have a problem with that. SUSAN COX, Assistant Attorney General, said the State of Alaska has waived its immunity from suit, except in limited circumstances. This bill does not affect any injured parties' ability to sue or collect damages. This pertains to the person who is being sued and to their ability to have their employer defend them and pay the damages if any are assessed against them. SENATOR RIEGER wondered if this was a path to the deep pocket of municipal governments that didn't exist before. MS. COX said that the public employer is vicariously liable for the acts of its employees anyway. Number 296 SENATOR LINCOLN asked if part time employees would be covered by this as well as all Boards and Commissions. MS. COX said the definition is rather broad. It does specifically say that it includes members of Boards and Commissions, although they do not normally consider those employment arrangements. SENATOR SHARP asked if there were situations where an employee does not notify an employer of a problem caused by his actions and the employer, therefore, would lose the defense through insurance from failure to notify. MS. COX answered that there are requirements within the bill that the employee has to provide notice of a claim within a certain amount of time if he wants to receive defense. SENATOR KELLY said they would set aside HB 277 and announced HB 468 8 FOSTER CARE REVIEW PANEL) to be up for consideration. REPRESENTATIVE CYNTHIA TOOHEY, Sponsor, said last fall the Division of Legislative Audit did an audit regarding the upcoming sunset date of the Citizens' Review Panel for Permanency Planning. The recommendation was to extend the sunset date to 1997. This bill has the support of the Alaska Chapter of the National Association of Social Workers, The Alaska Foster Parent Association, and the National Association of Foster Parents Reviewers. There is a $0 fiscal note. SENATOR RIEGER moved to pass HB 468 from committee with individual recommendations. There were no objections and it was so ordered. Number 450 SENATOR KELLY announced HB 497 (OFFICERS OF UTILITY COOPERATIVES) to be up for consideration. REPRESENTATIVE JOE GREEN said this bill simply adds to the names of the officers of electric and telephone cooperatives. The current situation with cooperatives says that the chief executive officer is called the general manager by the REA and there are various managers below that. The Board of Directors has a president, vice president, secretary, and treasurer. SENATOR SHARP asked if this bill allowed the president to be a non elected member. REPRESENTATIVE GREEN answered yes. Number 470 SENATOR LINCOLN pointed out an error in drafting in placement of the word "or." REPRESENTATIVE GREEN agreed and said it was correct on page 5. SENATOR KELLY announced a recess from 2:20 p.m. - 2:21 p.m. SENATOR LINCOLN offered a conceptual amendment saying "or" would be after "president" and after "vice president." There were no objections and it was adopted. SENATOR RIEGER moved to pass HB 497 from committee with individual recommendations. There were no objections and it was so ordered. SENATOR KELLY adjourned the meeting at 2:22 p.m.