Legislature(2001 - 2002)
05/01/2001 12:15 PM RLS
* first hearing in first committee of referral
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
ALASKA STATE LEGISLATURE SENATE RULES COMMITTEE May 1, 2001 12:15 p.m. MEMBERS PRESENT Senator Drue Pearce, Chair Senator John Cowdery, Vice Chair Senator Randy Phillips Senator Gene Therriault Senator Johnny Ellis MEMBERS ABSENT All Members Present COMMITTEE CALENDAR SENATE JOINT RESOLUTION NO. 24 Proposing amendments to the Constitution of the State of Alaska relating to the budget reserve fund. ADOPTED A SENATE RULES COMMITTEE SUBSTITUTE AND APPROVED ALL VERSIONS FOR CALENDARING SENATE BILL NO. 83 "An Act relating to construction of highways by the Department of Transportation and Public Facilities." APPROVED FOR CALENDARING SENATE BILL NO. 151 "An Act relating to the Bristol Bay Salmon Classic; and providing for an effective date." APPROVED FOR CALENDARING SENATE BILL NO. 176 "An Act relating to distributorships." APPROVED FOR CALENDARING CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 99(HES) "An Act relating to school discipline and safety programs; and providing for an effective date." APPROVED FOR CALENDARING CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 149(FIN)(title am) "An Act expressing legislative intent regarding correctional facility space; relating to correctional facility space; authorizing the Department of Corrections to enter into an agreement to lease facilities for the confinement and care of prisoners within the Kenai Peninsula Borough; and providing for an effective date." APPROVED FOR CALENDARING PREVIOUS COMMITTEE ACTION SJR 24 - See Finance Report dated 4/24/01. SB 83 - See Transportation minutes dated 3/13/01 and Finance Report dated 4/25/01. SB 151 - See Labor and Commerce minutes dated 4/28/01. SB 176 - See Judiciary minutes dated 4/25/01. HB 99 - See HESS minutes dated 4/20/01. HB 149 - See Finance Report dated 4/27/01. WITNESS REGISTER Senator Dave Donley Alaska State Capitol Juneau, AK 99801-1182 POSITION STATEMENT: Answered questions about CSSJR 24(RLS). ACTION NARRATIVE TAPE 01-8, SIDE A Number 001 CHAIRWOMAN DRUE PEARCE called the Senate Rules Committee meeting to order at 12:15 p.m. All members were present. Chairwoman Pearce announced the committee would hold its substantive hearing on SJR 24 first. SJR 24-AMEND CONSTITUTIONAL BUDGET RESERVE FUND SENATOR COWDERY moved to adopt CSSJR 24(RLS), Version L, as the working document of the committee. There being no objection, the motion carried. SENATOR DAVE DONLEY, Co-Chair of the Senate Finance Committee, sponsor of SJR 24, explained the intent of this constitutional amendment is to restore the original intent of the constitutional budget reserve (CBR) as adopted. The original draft of the legislation contained a provision for an automatic draw from the CBR for the amount of money in the budget that was less than or equal to the prior year's appropriation. That was not requested by the Senate Finance Committee. The Committee debated that provision and worked with the Legislative Finance Division. All agreed it would be better to have a separate simple majority vote for the withdrawal of CBR funds. That is the only change made to the Senate Rules Committee substitute. CHAIRWOMAN PEARCE asked if there would be a separate section that would trigger another CBR vote. SENATOR DONLEY answered there would probably be a separate section in the budget that would require a separate vote to withdraw money from the CBR. There being no further questions or testimony, SENATOR COWDERY moved to calendar all Senate versions of SJR 24. SENATOR ELLIS objected. The motion to calendar all Senate versions of SJR 24 carried with Senators Cowdery, Phillips, Therriault and Pearce voting "yea," and Senator Ellis voting "nay." SENATOR COWDERY moved to calendar all Senate versions of SB 83- CONSTRUCTION OF HIGHWAYS BY DOTPF. SENATOR ELLIS objected for the reason that he believes this legislation was set in motion because of the force accounting system used by the Department of Transportation and Public Facilities (DOTPF) on the St. Mary's project. He noted the experts have looked into that project and found a well managed, comparatively inexpensive project that will deliver great benefits to that rural village. He believes this bill is a step backward in terms of workforce development and providing cash paying jobs in Native villages across the state. For that reason, he strongly opposes SB 83. SENATOR COWDERY commented that this bill would allow the St. Mary's project to proceed as planned because of the effective date and it allows DOTPF to use a force account if no responsible bids are submitted for projects costing more than $500,000. SENATOR THERRIAULT asked if the Senate Finance Committee increased the amount from $250,000 to $500,000. SENATOR COWDERY said that is correct. CHAIRWOMAN PEARCE said she has a continuing concern that the Division of Legal Services is reviewing about how this bill might affect Transfer of Responsibility Agreements (TORAs), where municipal, state and federal funding is used to build a project. It is her understanding that Senator Cowdery did not intend to reach into TORAs. SENATOR COWDERY said that was not his intention but he does not see anything wrong with using a competitive bid process. He intended SB 83 to apply to DOTPF projects only. CHAIRWOMAN PEARCE said she may offer an amendment on the Senate floor to exempt TORAs. The motion to calendar all Senate versions of SB 83 carried with Senator Phillips, Therriault, Cowdery and Pearce voting "yea," and Senator Ellis voting "nay." SENATOR ELLIS moved to calendar all Senate versions of SB 151- BRISTOL BAY SALMON CLASSIC. SENATOR PHILLIPS objected because he opposes gambling. The motion to calendar SB 151 carried with Senators Cowdery, Therriault, Pearce and Ellis voting "yea," and Senator Phillips voting "nay." SENATOR PHILLIPS moved to calendar all Senate versions of SB 176- DISTRIBUTORSHIPS and informed committee members that he will propose an amendment to change the title on the Senate floor. There being no objection, the motion carried. CHAIRWOMAN PEARCE announced that CSHB 99(HES)-SCHOOL DISCIPLINE AND SAFETY PROGRAMS was before the committee. SENATOR THERRIAULT commented that he is not opposed to what this bill proposes to do but it is one more instance of the state stepping in and telling the local school districts how to run their business. He believes most school districts would go in this direction, if they have not already. The districts have expressed concern about unfunded mandates yet there is no fiscal note attached to this bill. He noted he will be a "no" vote on the Senate floor. SENATOR PHILLIPS moved to calendar CSHB 99(HES). There being no objection, the motion carried. CHAIRWOMAN PEARCE announced that HB 149-PRIVATE PRISON IN KENAI was before the committee. She noted that the Senate Finance Committee adopted Version W as a committee substitute. SENATOR COWDERY moved to calendar SCS CSHB 149(FIN). SENATOR ELLIS objected. The motion carried with Senators Therriault, Cowdery and Pearce voting "yea," and Senators Phillips and Ellis voting "nay." There being no further business to come before the committee, CHAIRWOMAN PEARCE adjourned the meeting at 12:28 p.m.