Legislature(1999 - 2000)
03/29/2000 03:15 PM RES
* first hearing in first committee of referral
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
SENATE RESOURCES COMMITTEE March 29, 2000 3:15 P.M. MEMBERS PRESENT Senator Rick Halford, Chairman Senator Robin Taylor, Vice Chairman Senator Pete Kelly Senator Jerry Mackie Senator Lyda Green Senator Sean Parnell Senator Georgianna Lincoln MEMBERS ABSENT All members present COMMITTEE CALENDAR Commercial Fisheries Entry Commission - Mr. Ed Dersham and Mr. Larry Engel Oil and Gas Conservation Commission - Mr. Daniel Seamount Board of Fisheries - Ms. Marlene Johnson SENATE BILL NO. 283 "An Act relating to the accounting for and appropriations of state land disposal program revenue; and providing for an effective date." -MOVED CSSB 283(RES) OUT OF COMMITTEE SENATE BILL NO. 124 "An Act relating to electronic application for and issuance of licenses, permits, and tags issued by the Department of Fish and Game; to violations regarding a license, permit, or tag applied for or issued electronically; and providing for an effective date." -HEARD AND HELD SENATE BILL NO. 296 "An Act relating to charges for state services; requiring that fees levied by resource agencies for designated regulatory services be based on the actual and reasonable direct cost of providing the services, except in the case of certain negotiated or fixed fees; relating to negotiated and fixed fees of resource agencies; relating to invoices for designated regulatory services; establishing a petition process regarding fees charged by resource agencies for regulatory services; and providing for an effective date." -MOVED CSSB 296(RES) OUT OF COMMITTEE SENATE BILL NO. 38 "An Act relating to certain audits regarding oil and gas royalty and net profits and to audits regarding costs relating to exploration incentive credits and oil and gas exploration licenses; and providing for an effective date." -MOVED SB 38 OUT OF COMMITTEE SENATE JOINT RESOLUTION NO. 31 Relating to subsistence activities of urban Alaska Natives under the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act. -MOVED SJR 31 OUT OF COMMITTEE HOUSE BILL NO. 114 "An Act repealing the prohibition against the taking of antlerless moose." -HEARD AND HELD PREVIOUS SENATE COMMITTEE ACTION SB 283 - See Resources minutes dated 3/27/00. SB 296 - No previous action to record. SB 38 - See Resources minutes dated 3/27/00. SJR 31 - No previous action to record. HB 114 - No previous action to record. WITNESS REGISTER Ms. Carol Carroll, Director Department of Natural Resources Division of Support Services 400 Willoughby Ave., 5th Floor Juneau, AK 99501 POSITION STATEMENT: Supported SB 283. Mr. Geron Bruce, Legislative Liaison Department of Fish and Game P.O. Box 25526 Juneau, AK 99802 POSITION STATEMENT: Supported SB 124. Ms. Janice Adair, Director Division of Environmental Health Department of Environmental Conservation 555 Cordova Street Anchorage, AK 99501 POSITION STATEMENT: Commented on SB 296. Ms. Charlotte MacCay, Senior Administrator Environmental Affairs Cominco Alaska 1133 W 15 th Ave. Anchorage, AK 99501 POSITION STATEMENT: Supported SB 296. Mr. Ken Freeman, Executive Director Resource Development Council 121 W. Fireweed Lane #250 Anchorage, AK 99503 POSITION STATEMENT: Supported SB 296. Mr. Mike Tibbles, Aide Representative Gene Therriault State Capitol Bldg. Juneau, AK 99811 POSITION STATEMENT: Commented on SB 296. Mr. Ed Grasser, Aide Representative Beverly Masek State Capitol Bldg. Juneau, AK 99811 POSITION STATEMENT: Commented on HB 114. Mr. Matt Robus, Deputy Director Division of Wildlife Conservation Department of Natural Resources P.O. Box 25526 Juneau, AK 99802 POSITION STATEMENT: Supported HB 114. ACTION NARRATIVE TAPE 00-15, SIDE A Number 001 CHAIRMAN HALFORD called the Senate Resources Committee meeting to order at 3:15 and announced that they would take up the confirmation hearings. MR. ED DERSHAM, Board of Fisheries, said he had already done a three-year term on the Board. He has become very familiar with the Board process and fishery issues. He looks forward to working for another three years. CHAIRMAN HALFORD noted the committee didn't have any questions and thanked him for his service. MR. LARRY ENGEL, Board of Fisheries, said he came from a commercial fishing family and reviewed his professional history. SENATOR TAYLOR thanked both Mr. Engel and Mr. Dersham and said he appreciated the committee system that they have adopted to work under. He wished them well. SENATOR GREEN thanked Mr. Engel for changing his mind to come back and serve on the Board of Fisheries. SENATOR TAYLOR moved to send the standard letter of non-objection forward. There were no objections. CHAIRMAN HALFORD announced a hearing for the Commercial Fisheries Entry Commission. MS. MARLENE JOHNSON said she had been on the Commission for three years and three months and she enjoys the work. CHAIRMAN HALFORD thanked her for her years of service. SENATOR TAYLOR moved to send the standard letter of non-objection. There were no objections. CHAIRMAN HALFORD announced the hearing for the Oil and Gas Conservation Commission. Number 497 MR. DANIEL SEAMOUNT said he has been filling in as a commissioner for the last five weeks and finds the job very exciting and fulfilling. He reviewed his resume'. SENATOR TAYLOR asked if he had a position on the Governor's compact with BP. MR. SEAMOUNT answered no. SENATOR TAYLOR moved to forward the standard letter of non objections to the Senate. There were no objections. SB 283-NAT RES.REVENUE: FISH/TIMBER/LAND CHAIRMAN HALFORD announced SB 283 to be up for consideration. SENATOR TAYLOR moved to adopt the committee substitute. There were no objections and it was so ordered. CHAIRMAN HALFORD noted that it created three new categories of designated program receipts and is pretty self explanatory. In the process it reinstates and keeps the shore-fishery leases going. SENATOR TAYLOR moved to pass CSSB 283(RES) from committee with individual recommendations. SENATOR LINCOLN asked if there was any objection from the Department or from the Administration. MS. CAROL CARROLL, Department of Natural Resources, said they do not object to the title changes at all. For the timber receipts, the only concern they have is they hope not to raise the expectation of folks that this will fund timber sales, because the money coming in to this account is not really enough to fund the program. If that expectation is there, they might not get the NCIP receipts to have future timber sales. SENATOR LINCOLN withdrew her objection and the bill passed from committee with individual recommendations. SB 124-FISH & GAME LICENSING BY ELECTRONICS CHAIRMAN HALFORD announced SB 124 to be up for consideration. MR. GERON BRUCE, Department of Fish and Game, said the bill enables the ADF&G with the concurrence of the Department of Public Safety to set up an electronic licensing system using either the Internet or something like an 800 phone number which would allow people to purchase and directly be licensed at the time of purchasing. They would be issued a "smart number" which would have some information that would be correlated to some personal identification information like date of birth, eye color, etc. They expect that most licenses would still be sold through the current system of private vendors issuing a paper license. This would just add convenience for some people. They would also have to carry a photo i.d. in the field which you are not required to do with a paper license. CHAIRMAN HALFORD asked if this applied to the king salmon stamp or the State duck stamp. MR. BRUCE replied yes, that is their intention. Eventually, they would like to bring as many of their licenses, tags, and stamps, as possible on line. CHAIRMAN HALFORD asked how an enforcement officer on the Noatak would know whether someone has a sheet tag. Number 974 MR. BRUCE explained if you had a sheet tag, you would be issued a number at the time of purchase that would be equivalent to a license. It would be coded in such a way that a public safety officer would be able to have references to tell whether it had the proper coding required for the particular hunt. SENATOR GREEN said that a vendor came to her with the problem of someone getting a media license and then coming to his place to get all the rest of the documentation. He would not be able to collect a fee. MR. BRUCE replied that the situation under electronic licensing would not be different than it would be under current licensing. That is, if someone were to purchase a hunting license from one vendor and then decide they wanted to pick up a tag from another. He didn't think it was a significant concern; it wouldn't take revenue away from the vendor. He is providing a service that he doesn't have to. Usually the reason a vendor sells licenses is because it draws people into their store where they can sell them merchandise or other services. SENATOR GREEN asked on what item the bulk of money is made. CHAIRMAN HALFORD answered "non-resident tags." SENATOR GREEN asked what the fee was for the license. MR. BRUCE answered that he thought it was $85 for a hunting license for a non-resident. He thought a vendor got a percentage - about 5% and additional compensation later in the form of a flat amount or a flat amount per license if it's over the minimum amount. SENATOR TAYLOR asked how they are going to do all of the stamps and licenses electronically since there are so many and the stamps come out later in the spring. MR. BRUCE replied when you purchase the state stamp, you don't need an additional federal stamp. SENATOR TAYLOR said, "Oh yeah, you do. It's called a federal duck stamp." There are two different stamps; one of them you buy at the U.S. Post Office and the other is from the State. He asked how a guide or charter boat captain would be able to verify licensure. MR. BRUCE said he didn't know and would find out for him. There would have to be a picture i.d. which would be linked to the smart number so it would indicate the license you held was actually issued to the individual that the picture i.d. indicates you are. SENATOR TAYLOR asked how they get a verification of signature. MR. BRUCE replied, similar to other kinds of electronic commerce, when you purchase it, you would assent to the statement that the information you have provided is accurate and truthful. There would be an enforceable mechanism. A vendor would have a list of the codes. The Department anticipates contracting with a private party to do an 800 number and possibly the Internet licensing, itself. He explained how simple the number system would be. CHAIRMAN HALFORD was concerned that the number would be simple enough for someone to figure out. MR. BRUCE said there would be 10 numbers and what some of them signify would be known to everyone, but some numbers would be known only to Public Safety. CHAIRMAN HALFORD said he didn't think there were enough votes to move SB 124 right now and held it. SJR 31-SUBSISTENCE FOR URBAN AK NATIVES CHAIRMAN HALFORD announced SJR 31 to be up for consideration. SENATOR WARD, sponsor, explained that in 1970, Shim Pete (80 years old) signed up for land claims in Red Shirt Lake, what is now considered urban Alaska. Senator Ward told him they were going to get land, money, and subsistence rights protected. Apparently, he misunderstood. Congress meant that subsistence would be for those people who lived in the right zip code and not for the other people. He is asking the Alaska Legislature to ask Congress to clarify whether it truly intended to deny Alaska natives residing in urban areas of Alaska the opportunity to engage in subsistence activities on the same basis as rural Alaskan residents when it passed the land bill. CHAIRMAN HALFORD noted that there wasn't a quorum and he would hold the bill. SB 296-FEES FOR STATE SERVICE CHAIRMAN HALFORD announced SB 296 to be up for consideration. MR. MIKE TIBBLES, Aide to Representative Therriault, said he has the companion bill in the House. He said this bill establishes three categories of services, a standard designated regulatory service, a designated regulatory service, and regulatory services. They are each applied differently in the bill. The standard designated regulatory services are services that they believe are not complex. The bill mandates that DEC fix as many of them as possible. That fixed fee would be based upon the average actual reasonable and direct cost in providing the service. The bill also provides for negotiated agreements between DEC and the industry. There is no mandatory provision that they reach agreement, but it provides that if the permittee requests negotiation, DEC at least make the attempt. If negotiations are unsuccessful, billing would fall back to time and expense which is actual and reasonable direct costs of providing the service. Additionally, the bill establishes a process for petitioning the agency or agencies involved. If you desire a single project fee, a permittee can petition DGC to come up with a single fee. There is also a provision regarding invoicing which they require on a monthly basis. There is a provision for the industry to petition a resource agency to adopt additional fixed fees if they believe they have a category of services that would be suitable for a fixed fee. This perhaps is a repetitive permit that is used on an annual basis or every four years. The designated regulatory services that are used in this bill are limited to water, waste water, and solid waste. CHAIRMAN HALFORD asked regarding page 8, section 3, where line 14 deletes "not including travel" as a basis of fees. The laundry list includes all the agriculture inspections, food, drugs, cosmetics, public accommodation. That looks like a broad list that's outside of the interests of the advocates of this legislation. And yet by taking out the exclusion on travel their fees may be increasing. He asked if that was a necessary part of this bill. MR. TIBBLES responded that they are opening the possibility that additional services under AS 44.46.025(a) may see an increase in their fees for travel. It wouldn't be every single program. Some of them don't even charge. For drugs and cosmetics there's no fee. Some individuals in the industry felt they should be able to pay for travel. There were concerns from small operators that they were going to be "killed" by the travel. CHAIRMAN HALFORD said this was not a service that the owner of a small bed and breakfast in a rural area with expensive travel particularly wants. He asked if that section was essential for the bill. MR. TIBBLES replied that language was added in this section for consistency. The goal of this bill is to establish a model for particular programs - water, waste water, and solid waste. This provision is outside the model they are attempting to build. SENATOR TAYLOR said his concern was that by adding more words to the statute they are trying to get a handle on these folks and still you are leaving the fox in charge of the hen house. You still have the agency telling you what is a reasonable time. TAPE 00-15, SIDE B MS. JANICE ADAIR, Director, Division of Environmental Health, said that all issues they agreed upon are reflected in SB 296, but there are few issues remaining that she hopes are minor that they will be meeting with the RDC on. Their overriding concern with this legislation is that it doesn't answer the policy question of how the cost of state services should be divided between the users of those services and the public. They believe the State desperately needs a rational basis for apportioning costs to State programs in setting fees. There has never been a holistic debate on how the cost of government services should be apportioned. They believe equity must be a cornerstone of any allocation of costs. To the extent there are inequities, there should be some rational basis. While this bill may result in an equitable distribution of costs for those programs and users covered by it, not all the programs within DEC for which fees are charged are included in it. In some cases, some of the smallest and least profitable businesses permitted by DEC are not covered by this bill. That remains a significant concern to them. CHAIRMAN HALFORD said it sounded like she said it's unfair not to charge those who can't afford to pay. MS. ADAIR responded that they believe this bill is equitable for the people it covers; it should be equally equitable for those who aren't covered by it. Number 2270 SENATOR TAYLOR noted that last year the legislature did an unallocated cut across the board and her department chose where to take it. She took out the food inspectors and then told the press how dangerous it was to go to restaurants because the legislature had cut them. They, then increased fees (by $1.1 million)to all the people who were out there and were licensed that had anything to do with food preparation. He thought they made a profit for the Department of $700,000 - $800,000. MS. ADAIR responded that there were two cuts; one was an unallocated reduction of $340,000 and that was taken in the Water Quality Program. Another cut was taken specific to the Food Safety and Sanitation Component of $339,000. That was a reduction to that component and was made by the Conference Committee. In addition, another $548,000 was switched from general funds to general fund program receipts in Seafood Safety and Sanitation component. They increased fees by $548,000. So their fee authority totals $1.5 million. Prior to that it was about $1 million. That is if every single person pays. SENATOR TAYLOR said it still looked like they are raising more fees than the amount of their cuts. MS. ADAIR responded that they had raised their fees to the level necessary to bring in the amount in their budget that is authorized as general fund program receipts which is $1,530,000. Their analysis shows that they will actually under-collect, because not every single person paid. SENATOR TAYLOR asked if they didn't have flat fees 10 or 15 years ago. MS. ADAIR recollected when fees were first established for this program, there was a flat $50 fee for some time. This program is general funded; there are very little federal dollars and those are contract dollars to hire people to go out and do inspections. SENATOR TAYLOR asked if some of the choices made within the department as to the level of interest or risk. MS. ADAIR answered that the number of positions any agency has to be authorized; the total amount of fees they are authorized to collect has to also be authorized. How they allocate those costs amongst the permittees is part of the regulatory process. They make a proposal to the public; they mail out to areas that are going to be affected and work with them to the maximum extent they can. CHAIRMAN HALFORD asked how the section worked if you're an employer of less than 20 in the category of fees that are going to be covered. Number 1900 MS. ADAIR said that was the definition of direct deposit fee and is on page 7, line 5. This is an amendment made in House Finance. It was explained that there may be placer miners out in remote areas of the state, people would call up and complain about them and DEC would have to out numerous times to follow up on essentially specious complaints. The maker of the amendment does not want the businesses to have to pay for that travel. They agree with the goal and don't charge people the inspection fee for a complaint that turns out to be invalid. People do that to their competitors. However, the language in the bill doesn't read that way and the way they think it will work is to have two separate flat fees - one for businesses with 20 or more employees and one for businesses with less than 20. They haven't figured out yet how they will know how many employees a business has. It's somewhat problematic the way it is written. SENATOR TAYLOR said he was troubled that there was an incentive within the Department to do more inspections, because the revenues upon which it is based will depend upon the level of inspection. He wouldn't want to go into a court where the judge's salary depended upon whether or not he was convicted. MS. ADAIR said in this case, the bill is premised on the Department having as many flat fees as possible. A permittee would pay a flat fee annually and that fee would be the same whether they were inspected once or five times. Number 1774 MS. CHARLOTTE MACCAY, Senior Administrator, Environmental Affairs, Cominco Alaska, and Vice President, Producers Council, said as Red Dog Operations they have paid hundreds of thousands of dollars in fees to DEC. They supported this bill so there are some side bars and structures, some consistencies and accountability for the fees they have paid. There has been very little of that in the past. Regarding the travel, they have often gone into legal uncertainties to be able to request to pay DEC to travel up to see the operation before they attempt to regulate it - as well as legal obstacles to being able to pay to get everyone to Seattle and coordinate with the federal agencies. They can't pay to bring EPA up here. Having the travel in the bill is so they have clear ability to do so. They feel that other solutions could help protect the small operators from having it imposed on them unwillingly. They have viewed this bill as part of a multi-faceted solution. MS. MACCAY said that industry has a responsibility to pay for some of the permitting; but they also feel the need to pay for a core management within those permitting functions that is experienced, seasoned, and also knows their authority and when not to bow to EPA's authority. Third party consultants and new inexperienced people do not have that confidence to do so. Third party consultants do need to be brought in for the permitting staffing for the technical work and the general permit writing. Number 1585 MR. KEN FREEMAN, Executive Director, Resource Development Counsel (RDC), said their work group had worked over the last 13 months to develop a permit fee structure based upon two underlying principles - predictability and accountability. He stressed the productive working relationship their group has developed with both the legislature and the administration on this bill. He said he could address Senator Taylor's concerns one of which was the agencies ability to determine reasonable and direct costs. There are a couple of protections within the bill that give industry comfort. First, fixed fees will go through a regulatory process and the public has the to test the reasonable question. Page 6, line 18 has the definition of direct costs. Those things which will not be allowed to be in direct costs include the cost of salaries of administrative support and supervisory personnel who are not directly engaged in providing a service, other budgeted overhead expenses, interagency charges that would not meet the requirements if those charges were incurred or invoiced by the agency providing the designated regulatory service. Secondly, if negotiated permit activity doesn't come together for the permittee and the agency, time and expense invoices can be appealed to OMB, an opportunity for an additional check for the permittee. Thirdly, negotiated contracts as written in the bill are contracts (page 3, line 12). SENATOR MACKIE said he first became aware of the need for this bill last year. He asked him what the concerns of the agencies were and what had been done to accommodate them. MR. FREEMAN said RDC met for over a year and Mr. Jon Tillinghast helped them craft the initial draft which was given to DEC. They reviewed it with some changes which were incorporated. That exchange before the legislative process happened three or four times. When they got to the Finance Committee, agency staff had all been giving them input on a daily basis. SENATOR MACKIE asked if he was satisfied that they had accommodated 90% of agency concerns with DNR. MR. FREEMAN replied that all of DNR's concerns were taken care of. DEC's original fiscal note was within the millions of dollars and at this point in time it's down to $0. MR. FREEMAN said with regard to Senator Taylor's concern about giving DEC the discretion to come up with what is reasonable and direct costs, that there are several clauses that give comfort. First is the establishment of fixed fees. The second is if there is a dispute on time and expense invoices, it can first be appealed within the agency. If you still have a dispute, particularly with regard to direct and reasonable cost, you can appeal to OMB. The objective there was to appeal to an entity outside of DEC. A third item is on page 3, line 12 where their intent was to have the negotiated agreements actually be contracts. Number 466 SENATOR TAYLOR said he had gone over interport cost differential with DNR where he wrote it into law and foolishly believed someone would try to enforce it. Our boats continued to not be worked on in Alaska because he didn't have listed specifically what interport cost differential would be. He didn't think he had to tell them to include cost of travel. What they did to diminish the cost of interport differential is to put nothing down or they would bid the contracts out with the differential being figured off of Seattle, Washington, because that's where they would end the run. MR. FREEMAN said there was a lot of discussion about this issue. He didn't think they had accomplished all the goals of the members in the legislation, but he thought they had something they could all support. MR. STEVEN DAUGHERTY, Department of Law, said they had resolved most of the legal issues that had existed with the original version of this bill. They have worked to give the departments adequate regulatory authority so they could adopt regulations to implement the bills. There are still some significant costs for the Department of Law under reimbursable service agreements will be from contracts that will have to be reviewed according to statute. Another cost is increased regulation lawsuits and appeals generated out of what is a reasonable and direct cost. SENATOR MACKIE asked him to explain the fiscal note. He asked if it is was for the review of contracts and wasn't that what DOL is being paid to do right now or do they have to hire new people. MR. DAUGHERTY answered that they are operating beyond capacity right now, particularly in the natural resources area. In order to take on new functions, they have to either drop work that is currently being done or hire new employees. SENATOR MACKIE said he didn't know money was an issue with the Department of Law. MR. DAUGHERTY responded that particularly in the environmental arena they worked largely on reimbursable service agreements from the agencies and not on general funds. If they don't get the money from DEC for the services, basically the Department of Law can't provide them. They have some environmental general funds, but they are quite limited. In the first two years, the costs are approximately $74,000. After that they would have a quarter of an attorney primarily for contract review and review of regulations. CHAIRMAN HALFORD asked if there was any legal problem with the provision that doesn't apply travel to employers of less than 20. MR. DAUGHERTY answered that he didn't see a real legal problem. The number of regulations is increasing, but they could argue that equal protection isn't applicable, because they aren't similarly situated. There would also be some problems with defining what is 20 employees. That can be resolved through court action or regulation. Number 466 SENATOR TAYLOR asked about the reimbursable fee agreements that are contracts and if there was anything in the fiscal note about the times when the State makes a mistake and gets sued under the contract. MR. DAUGHERTY answered that he didn't think that was taken into consideration since it was a normal risk of doing businesses. They don't normally put that in a fiscal note unless they are certain they will incur the expenses. SENATOR TAYLOR asked if they had thought about the constitutional aspect of this and the legislature's power of appropriation. MR. DAUGHERTY said they hadn't looked at that particular question, but he didn't believe that was a problem because DEC will always be operating off its appropriation from a previous year. They will just be using the reimbursable service agreements to collect the fees to collect the money that was already authorized by the legislature. SENATOR TAYLOR said then the legislature's power of appropriation merely becomes a rubber stamp each year annually to grant to the Department a certain level of authorization to use receipts sufficient to allow these arrangements to move forward. MR. DAUGHERTY said he saw his point - with a multi-year contract that could be a problem. Normally that's not the case. Permitting is usually a year and, at most, two. On-going projects are not covered by this bill. SENATOR TAYLOR said he was concerned about the overall pattern of agencies working out a fee arrangement with the people they service. MR. DAUGHERTY said he would suggest adding the standard language "subject to appropriation" to the contracts to deal with his concern. On the policy issue of fees being set by the legislature, that is an issue DEC is concerned with. He thought Ms. Adair should answer that question. TAPE 00-16, SIDE A Number 001 MR. DAUGHERTY said they try to avoid any violation of the Constitution and believe that appropriations go through the legislature and that program receipts do not violate the Constitution just from the fact that they are being raised because they are still subject to appropriation by the legislature. CHAIRMAN HALFORD said on line 14 he wanted to put back "not including travel" so they're not passing something that's going to add to the rate base for all the little guys. SENATOR MACKIE said his only concern was what effect it has in terms of the consensus building approach that's been taken. CHAIRMAN HALFORD said the reason he mentioned it is because this is an area that's not in the group that's working on it. His goal is to not change the provisions as it applies to the inspections of others than this working group. MR. TIBBLES pointed out, if they remove the deletion and put back in the prohibition to charge travel they will take out DEC's ability to charge travel in all cases. That's including the designated regulatory services. CHAIRMAN HALFORD asked how to do it so they didn't include their friends in CHAR, etc. SENATOR MACKIE said he understands what he wants to do and supports that, but wondered what the overall effect was to non-RDC industries as well. Number 372 CHAIRMAN HALFORD said if RDC and their group is willing to accept travel because of the other things they gain in this process and the side boards they get on the whole process, that's fine. This part of the bill (page 7, line 5) goes back to an existing statute that was an exemption and applied to everybody else. Conceptually, he wanted to delete "not including travel" for any of the services that are part of the RDC package. If it is agreeable to have a conceptual amendment that deletes number one in whatever way the legal department says to do it, that's clear enough so that everyone knows what they are doing. MR. TIBBLES suggested adding "However travel may be charged for designated regulatory services under AS 37.10.058. They have a specific definition of what a designated regulatory service is in this bill. It only includes water, waste water, and solid waste. SENATOR MACKIE asked if all the industry would fall within that category anyway. MR. TIBBLES said that was correct. CHAIRMAN HALFORD asked if they would go back to the original language of not including travel and add that phrase. MR. TIBBLES said that was right. SENATOR TAYLOR said this was still going to include anyone out there who has a trailer court with a water or sewer system hooked up to it. By making this change, people who have been sending in water samples will now have to pay the cost of travel for some DEC inspector to come out. He asked if the 20 employee exemption would keep them from being involved. CHAIRMAN HALFORD explained that the 20 employee exemption was a blanket exemption for everyone. MR. TIBBLES said that was correct. SENATOR TAYLOR moved Mr. Tibble's amendment. There were no objections and it was so ordered. SENATOR TAYLOR moved to pass CSSB 296 from committee with the accompanying fiscal note with individual recommendations. There were no objections and it was so ordered. SB 38-OIL & GAS AUDITS CHAIRMAN HALFORD announced SB 38 to be up for consideration. SENATOR KELLY moved SB 38 from committee with accompanying fiscal notes. There were no objections and it was so ordered. SJR 31-SUBSISTENCE FOR URBAN AK NATIVES CHAIRMAN HALFORD announced SJR 31 to be up for consideration. SENATOR TAYLOR moved to pass SJR 31 from committee with individual recommendations. There were no objections and it was so ordered. HB 114-REPEAL PROHIBITION ANTLERLESS MOOSE CHAIRMAN HALFORD announced HB 114 to be up for consideration. MR. ED GRASSER, Aide to Representative Beverly Masek, explained that this is kind of an inflammatory issue. Most of the advisory committees in the State "chewed them out" because it took all their power away. Representative Masek decided that an outright repeal of AS 16.05.780 wasn't the right way to go. They discussed the issue with several advisory committees and the Department and decided to change the way the current law works. The new language would create a situation where the advisory committees would have to act in the positive to prevent the Board from reauthorizing a cow moose hunt which involves a lot of time and expense. Usually, the Board just rubber stamps what the advisory committee sends them. Right now the Department has to go out with the area biologists and round up all the advisory committees in an area where an anterless moose hunt is taking place, get permission to continue it, and bring that information to the Board to act on the reauthorization. Advisory committees made it real clear that they didn't want to give up that power. SENATOR TAYLOR moved to adopt the committee substitute. There were no objections and it was so ordered. SENATOR MACKIE said there was a letter from Commissioner Rue, ADF&G, supporting the original HB 114 and asked if he supported the CS. MR. GRASSER answered that he thought that was the case, though, they would have to check with the Department. They were trying to reduce the costs involved with this reauthorization every year. He thought it would be good to include language that makes it clear that the reauthorizations only takes place in the area for which the Board is meeting. MR. MATT ROBUS, Deputy Director, Division of Wildlife Conservation, supported the outright repeal of the prohibition in the original version. However, the Department introduced language similar to what's in the CS a couple of years ago and agree that it is an appropriate way to go. One conceptual change he would like to see that would further reduce the costs involved in the reauthorization process would be to word this so that it took on the same two year region by region cycle the Board of Game meetings now do. Presently, every spring they have a meeting of the Board of Game in either Anchorage and Fairbanks. Staff and advisory committees from throughout the State that have antlerless moose hunts in their area have to go through the motions of reviewing the status of the herd and decide whether they want to go forth with this hunt for another year. This means they bring staff from regions around the State to the meetings and those costs could be done away with if they adopted the same cycle. MR. DICK BISHOP, Alaska Outdoor Council, supported HB 114. The statute from 25 years ago has fallen into disuse and become a burden. SENATOR TAYLOR asked about a clause saying if no one sends them anything, you can do what you want. But if a majority of the local advisory board objects, then you may not adopt. MR. GRASSER explained that this is how it's been happening for the last 30 years except for one or two occasions when the Department had to go out to places and have the advisory committee hold a meeting. A lot of times they forget or just don't get around to it. The way the current statute reads, if they don't have a meeting, they can't have a cow moose hunt. CHAIRMAN HALFORD said they would hold this bill pending enlightenment from the sponsor. CHAIRMAN HALFORD adjourned the meeting at 4:25 p.m.