Legislature(1999 - 2000)

04/20/1999 01:37 PM L&C

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
         SENATE LABOR AND COMMERCE COMMITTEE                                                                                    
                    April 20, 1999                                                                                              
                      1:37 P.M.                                                                                                 
MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                                 
Senator Jerry Mackie, Chairman                                                                                                  
Senator Tim Kelly, Vice Chairman                                                                                                
Senator Dave Donley                                                                                                             
Senator Loren Leman                                                                                                             
Senator Lyman Hoffman                                                                                                           
MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                                                                  
All Members Present                                                                                                             
COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                                                                              
CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 123(L&C)                                                                                                  
"An Act relating to the exemption from the requirement for payment                                                              
of minimum wage and overtime compensation for certain volunteers of                                                             
nonprofit organizations; exempting individuals who provide ski                                                                  
patrol services on a voluntary basis from the requirement for                                                                   
payment of minimum wage and overtime compensation; and providing                                                                
for an effective date."                                                                                                         
     -MOVED SCSHB 123(L&C) OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                     
CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 83(JUD)(title am)                                                                                         
"An Act relating to certain securities occupations and investment                                                               
pools; relating, with regard to the Alaska Securities Act, to                                                                   
federal covered securities, the registration of securities, the                                                                 
general exemptions for securities and transactions, Internet offers                                                             
of securities and transactions, file confidentiality, petitions to                                                              
superior court by the administrator to reduce civil penalties to                                                                
judgment, time limits for bringing court actions for violations,                                                                
administrator-established fees and administrator-required                                                                       
reimbursements, consent to service, title, sales, purchases, offers                                                             
to sell, and offers to purchase; exempting certain violations of                                                                
the Alaska Securities Act from criminal penalties; amending or                                                                  
repealing certain current definitions in the Alaska Securities Act;                                                             
providing new Alaska Securities Act definitions for certain                                                                     
securities occupations, for certain federal statutes, and for the                                                               
terms  advisory client,'  advisory fee,'  advisory services,'                                                                   
 clients who are natural persons,'  federal covered security,'                                                                  
 investment advisory business,'  investment advisory contract,'                                                                 
 NASDAQ,'  notice filing,'  place of business,'  principal place of                                                             
business,'  securities business,'  substantial portion of the                                                                   
business,' and  supervised person'; and providing for an effective                                                              
     MOVED CSHB 83(JUD)(title am) OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                              
SENATE BILL NO. 141                                                                                                             
"An Act relating to construction contracts and subcontractors;                                                                  
relating to design- build construction contracts; and providing for                                                             
an effective date."                                                                                                             
     -MOVED CSSB 141(L&C) OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                      
SENATE JOINT RESOLUTION NO. 21                                                                                                  
Relating to workers and family members of workers exposed to                                                                    
radiation during the Amchitka nuclear tests.                                                                                    
     -MOVED SJR 21 OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                             
PREVIOUS SENATE COMMITTEE ACTION                                                                                                
HB 123 - See Labor and Commerce committee minutes dated 4/13/99.                                                                
HB 83 - No previous action to consider.                                                                                         
SB 141 - No previous action to consider.                                                                                        
SJR 21 - No previous action to consider.                                                                                        
WITNESS REGISTER                                                                                                                
Representative Rokeberg                                                                                                         
State Capitol Bldg.                                                                                                             
Juneau, AK 99811-1182                                                                                                           
POSITION STATEMENT: Supported CS to HB 123.                                                                                     
Mr. Paul Grossi, Director                                                                                                       
Division of Workers' Compensation                                                                                               
Department of Labor                                                                                                             
P.O. Box 15512                                                                                                                  
Juneau, AK 99802-5512                                                                                                           
POSITION STATEMENT: Commented on HB 123                                                                                         
Mr. Chris Ross                                                                                                                  
National Ski Patrol                                                                                                             
P.O. Box 92207                                                                                                                  
Anchorage, AK 99509                                                                                                             
POSITION STATEMENT: Commented on HB 123.                                                                                        
Mr. Terry Elder, Director                                                                                                       
Division of Banking, Securities, and Corporations                                                                               
P.O. Box 110807                                                                                                                 
Juneau, AK 99811-0907                                                                                                           
POSITION STATEMENT: Supported HB 83.                                                                                            
Mr. Michael Kerr, UAS Intern                                                                                                    
Senator Loren Leman                                                                                                             
State Capitol Bldg.                                                                                                             
Juneau, AK 99811-1182                                                                                                           
POSITION STATEMENT: Commented on SB 141 for Senator Leman, sponsor.                                                             
Mr. Mark O'Brien, Chief Contracts Officer                                                                                       
Department of Transportation                                                                                                    
3132 Channel Dr.                                                                                                                
Juneau, AK 99801-7898                                                                                                           
POSITION STATEMENT: Supported SB 141.                                                                                           
Mr. Michael Kenny                                                                                                               
Teamsters Local 959                                                                                                             
5203 E 34th Ave.                                                                                                                
Anchorage, AK 99503                                                                                                             
POSITION STATEMENT: Supported SJR 21.                                                                                           
Ms. Pamela Miller, Program Director                                                                                             
Alaska Community Action Toxic                                                                                                   
135 Christensen Dr.                                                                                                             
Anchorage, AK 99501                                                                                                             
POSITION STATEMENT: Supported SJR 21.                                                                                           
Mr. Devin Dougherty, Attorney                                                                                                   
Alaska Laborers Union                                                                                                           
Anchorage, AK 99801                                                                                                             
POSITION STATEMENT: Supported SJR 21.                                                                                           
Ms. Bev Aleck                                                                                                                   
Anchorage, AK                                                                                                                   
POSITION STATEMENT: Supported SJR 21.                                                                                           
Mr. Bob Hadrick                                                                                                                 
Aleutian Pribiloff Island Association                                                                                           
Anchorage, AK                                                                                                                   
POSITION STATEMENT: Supported SJR 21.                                                                                           
Mr. Walt Parker                                                                                                                 
U.S. Arctic Research Commission                                                                                                 
POSITION STATEMENT: Supported SJR 21.                                                                                           
ACTION NARRATIVE                                                                                                                
TAPE 99-15, SIDE A                                                                                                              
Number 001                                                                                                                      
           HB 123-MINIMUM WAGE & OVERTIME EXEMPTIONS                                                                            
CHAIRMAN MACKIE called the Senate Labor and Commerce Committee                                                                  
meeting to order at 1:37 p.m. and announced HB 123 to be up for                                                                 
consideration.  He said that Senator Leman had worked with the                                                                  
sponsor on language regarding nonprofit activities.                                                                             
SENATOR LEMAN moved to adopt the CS (Craemer4/20/99) to HB 123.                                                                 
There were no objections and it was so ordered.                                                                                 
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG concurred with the definition of nonprofit                                                              
activities in the CS.                                                                                                           
MR. PAUL GROSSI, Direction, Division of Workmens' Compensation,                                                                 
said that Section (a) of AS 23.32.30 excludes a number of                                                                       
categories of workers from Workmens' Compensation and this is                                                                   
usually what the Board goes by for coverage.  If they are not                                                                   
specifically excluded, the Board assumes they are covered.                                                                      
SENATOR KELLY asked if most ski patrols in Alaska were covered now                                                              
under Workmens' Compensation.                                                                                                   
MR. GROSSI answered that he didn't know about all of them, but                                                                  
Alyeska and Eaglecrest are covered.  He explained that the                                                                      
employer/employee relationship test is different for the feds and                                                               
other various statutes.  The Workmens' Compensation Board has its                                                               
own test.                                                                                                                       
MR. CHRIS ROSS, National Ski Patrol, said that he understands all                                                               
patrollers and operators in Alaska are covered.  They don't see                                                                 
that this bill would change that relationship.  They do not intend                                                              
to change to status quo with Workmens' Compensation.                                                                            
Number 100                                                                                                                      
SENATOR LEMAN moved to pass SDSHB 123(L&C) from committee.  There                                                               
were no objections and it was so ordered.                                                                                       
                  HB 83-ALASKA SECURITIES ACT                                                                                   
CHAIRMAN MACKIE announced HB 83 to be up for consideration.                                                                     
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG said this bill has received a lot of work                                                               
in the other body.  He said this is a modernization and update of                                                               
our security law.                                                                                                               
SENATOR MACKIE asked if there was any opposition to the bill as it                                                              
is currently written.                                                                                                           
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG answered that there was none and he had                                                                 
contacted all people in the securities industry.                                                                                
CHAIRMAN MACKIE asked Mr. Elder, Division of Banking, to give the                                                               
committee an overview of why they are losing federal funds.                                                                     
MR. TERRY ELDER, Director, Division of Banking, Securities, and                                                                 
Corporations, explained if we did not pass this bill bringing us                                                                
into compliance with federal law, we would lose the ability to                                                                  
require federal public securities, mostly mutual funds, to file                                                                 
notices and pay notice fees.  Those are currently in the range of                                                               
$4 - $5 million and have been growing at a 14 percent annual rate                                                               
over the last several years.  It would be a significant impact on                                                               
the general fund if this were not passed before October 1999 which                                                              
is when our authority to require that filing expires.  He noted how                                                             
both the House and Senate have been working very hard this session                                                              
to find $40 million to cut in the budget and this bill represents                                                               
10 percent of that.                                                                                                             
Number 180                                                                                                                      
The other major impact is on the investment advisory industry,                                                                  
because it changes the way investment advisors are regulated.  In                                                               
the past, they registered with the SEC and with states.  Now, only                                                              
large investment advisors register with SEC; smaller investors only                                                             
register with the state.  If we don't have effective language in                                                                
our Securities Act to regulate investment advisors, especially                                                                  
those that are registered only out-of-state, they would essentially                                                             
be unregulated.                                                                                                                 
In our state, we have about 310 large investment advisors and about                                                             
40 smaller investment advisors registered.  We have over 300                                                                    
investment advisor representatives that are registered, also.                                                                   
Without this legislation, we would no longer be able to register                                                                
In addition, it's necessary for us to come into compliance with                                                                 
federal laws.  Also, since we are doing a fairly major upgrade to                                                               
the Securities Act, other changes are being made which would                                                                    
benefit small businesses and their access to capital.  One example                                                              
of that is a new exemption for entrepreneurs who are seeking                                                                    
capital from accredited investors which are defined by federal law                                                              
as being institutions and wealthy individuals.  This would give                                                                 
them an exemption and the ability to use the Internet for                                                                       
advertising. If this bill passes, Alaska entrepreneurs will be able                                                             
to utilize the small business administration case net, an                                                                       
electronic matching service.  Right now they cannot use that.                                                                   
SENATOR LEMAN moved to pass HB 83 from committee with individual                                                                
recommendations.  There were no objections and it was so ordered.                                                               
           SB 141-PROCUREMENT: CONTRACTS/SUBCONTRACTS                                                                           
MR. JEREMY KERR, UAS Intern for Senator Leman, said SB 141 was                                                                  
introduced at the request of DOTPF to give the Department greater                                                               
flexibility in contracts known as "design build", where the owner                                                               
(in this case, the state) chooses a contractor that will build as                                                               
well as design a project.  Two examples of this are the M/V                                                                     
Kennicott and the Whittier Tunnel.  Usually, the owner picks a                                                                  
design and then has the contractor build it.                                                                                    
This bill is in the best interest of the State and will only affect                                                             
state contracts.  Current law states that construction contractors                                                              
must list the subcontractors they plan on using within five days of                                                             
the award of the contract.  Because of the nature of design build                                                               
contracts, it is not always possible for the contractor to identify                                                             
the needed subcontractors.  This provides flexibility to DOTPF to                                                               
allow contractors to provide that information at a later date.                                                                  
This bill also changes a request to change contractors to be in                                                                 
MR. KERR said there is no opposition from either the design or                                                                  
construction community that they know of.                                                                                       
CHAIRMAN MACKIE asked what was the fiscal impact of this bill.                                                                  
MR. KERR said there were zero fiscal impacts.                                                                                   
Number 320                                                                                                                      
MR. MARK O'BRIEN, Chief Contracts Officer, DOTPF, said that the two                                                             
issues they are trying to address are design/build construction                                                                 
contracts where they cannot list subcontractors within five days.,                                                              
because in a lot of cases, they don't know whether it's going to be                                                             
a piling contractor or a concrete contractor for the design of the                                                              
foundation of a building, for instance.  The second thing this does                                                             
is allow them to substitute or add subcontractors when it's in the                                                              
state's best interest.  An example of this would be discovering                                                                 
that you need an asbestos or lead abatement contractor after                                                                    
starting the project.                                                                                                           
SENATOR LEMAN asked how often the Department uses the design/build                                                              
approach versus the more conventional approach.                                                                                 
MR. O'BRIEN answered rarely.  He is aware of only two last year and                                                             
about five in the last three years.  A number of them have been                                                                 
sand storage buildings.                                                                                                         
SENATOR LEMAN said the CS has a new Section 3 which rewords                                                                     
language to give comfort to the design community about what                                                                     
conditions in AS 36.30.115 may still apply.  It doesn't change any                                                              
of the substance.                                                                                                               
SENATOR LEMAN moved to adopt the Banister CS to SB 141.  There were                                                             
no objections and it was so ordered.                                                                                            
SENATOR LEMAN moved to pass CSSB 141 from committee with individual                                                             
recommendations with the zero fiscal note.  There were no                                                                       
objections and it was so ordered.                                                                                               
         SJR 21-AMCHITKA ISL NUCLEAR TEST SITE WORKERS                                                                          
CHAIRMAN MACKIE announced SJR 21 to be up for consideration.                                                                    
MR. MICHAEL KENNY, Teamsters Local 959, said they had members                                                                   
working on Amchitka during nuclear testing and have noticed quite                                                               
a few health problems amongst those members and support this                                                                    
MS. PAM MILLER, Alaska Community Action Toxic, strongly supported                                                               
SJR 21 and said she is a biologist.  As a member of the Amchitka                                                                
Technical Advisory Group, she is familiar with the great                                                                        
difficulties workers and their families have had in finding the                                                                 
truth about radiation at Amchitka during the years following the                                                                
nuclear attack.  There are numerous reports of cancers and other                                                                
health problems after employment on the island.  She has reviewed                                                               
20,000 documents and has found documentation of radioactive sources                                                             
and leakage that workers were likely exposed to.  The Department of                                                             
Energy still withholds classified documents that would provide                                                                  
additional and much needed information for assessing environmental                                                              
human health practices.  The Worker's Medical Surveillance Program                                                              
will provide workers and their families information that is                                                                     
essential to understanding the health impacts of nuclear tests in                                                               
Amchitka.  She asked the members of the Legislature to work                                                                     
diligently to resolve worker compensation claims in litigation                                                                  
relating to Amchitka workers and their families.                                                                                
MR. KEVIN DOUGHERTY, Alaska Laborers Union, supported SJR 21.                                                                   
There is a need to have a just solution to the workers health                                                                   
issues that come out of Amchitka.  He observed that they are asking                                                             
for equal treatment for Alaskans who were in the private sector who                                                             
worked on Amchitka with those who worked in the federal sector.                                                                 
They did not get the monitoring or Workmen's Compensation that the                                                              
federal workers got.                                                                                                            
Also, the other nuclear test sites in the lower 48 have had medical                                                             
monitoring surveillance done and Alaskans should have equal                                                                     
Number 424                                                                                                                      
MS. BEV ALECK supported SJR 21.  She said the work that Congressman                                                             
Young and Senator Stevens and Senator Murkowski are doing would be                                                              
well enhanced with this resolution.                                                                                             
MR. BOB HADRICK, Aleutian Pribiloff Island Association, supported                                                               
SJR 21.                                                                                                                         
MR. WALTER PARKER, Commissioner, U.S. Arctic Research Commission,                                                               
supported SJR 21, said he was the Commission's representative on                                                                
the Amchitka Advisory Group since it was formed to examine the                                                                  
allegations that continue to come up on Amchitka.                                                                               
Number 451                                                                                                                      
SENATOR LEMAN moved to pass SJR 21 from committee with individual                                                               
recommendations.  There were no objections and it was so ordered.                                                               
CHAIRMAN MACKIE adjourned the meeting at 2:12 p.m.                                                                              

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