Legislature(1995 - 1996)

04/13/1995 03:32 PM STA

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
txt
               SENATE STATE AFFAIRS COMMITTEE                                
                         April 13, 1995                                        
                           3:32 p.m.                                           
                                                                               
  MEMBERS PRESENT                                                              
                                                                               
 Senator Bert Sharp, Chairman                                                  
 Senator Randy Phillips, Vice-Chairman                                         
 Senator Loren Leman                                                           
 Senator Jim Duncan                                                            
                                                                               
  MEMBERS ABSENT                                                               
                                                                               
 Senator Dave Donley                                                           
                                                                               
  COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                           
                                                                               
 SENATE BILL NO. 142                                                           
 "An Act establishing the Alaska Human Resource Investment Council             
 and transferring certain functions of other entities to the                   
 council; establishing a planning mechanism for employment training            
 and other human resource investment needs; and providing for an               
 effective date."                                                              
                                                                               
 SENATE BILL NO. 146                                                           
 "An Act relating to the Alaska Election Code and to state election            
 administration."                                                              
                                                                               
 HOUSE BILL NO. 173                                                            
 "An Act relating to reports by state agencies."                               
                                                                               
  PREVIOUS SENATE COMMITTEE ACTION                                             
                                                                               
 SB 142 - No previous senate committee action.                                 
                                                                               
 SB 146 - No previous senate committee action.                                 
                                                                               
 HB 173 - No previous senate committee action.                                 
                                                                               
  WITNESS REGISTER                                                             
                                                                               
 Brad Pierce, Senior Policy Analyst                                            
 Office of Management & Budget                                                 
 P.O. Box 110020, Juneau, AK 99811-0020¶465-4677                               
   POSITION STATEMENT: representative of prime sponsor of SB 142               
                                                                               
 Jerry Lewis, Executive Director                                               
 Governor's Council on Vocational & Career Education                           
 211 4th St., Ste. 101, Juneau, AK 99801-1172¶586-1736                         
   POSITION STATEMENT: supports SB 142                                         
                                                                               
 Jan Tatlow                                                                    
 P.O. Box 1621, Palmer, AK 99645¶745-4488                                      
   POSITION STATEMENT: testified on SB 142                                     
                                                                               
 Debra Call, Chairperson                                                       
 Alaska Job Training Council                                                   
 2525 C St., Anchorage, AK 99501¶561-3200                                      
   POSITION STATEMENT: supports SB 142                                         
                                                                               
 Mary Shields                                                                  
 4041 B St., #102, Anchorage, AK 99503¶562-1633                                
   POSITION STATEMENT: supports SB 142                                         
                                                                               
 Teeny Metcalf, Job Training Council                                           
 Department of Community & Regional Affairs                                    
 333 W. 4th Ave., Ste. 220, Anchorage, AK 99519-2341¶269-4659                  
   POSITION STATEMENT: supports SB 142                                         
                                                                               
 Sherman Ernouf, Aide to Senator Kelly                                         
 State Capitol, Juneau, Alaska, 99801-1182¶465-3822                            
   POSITION STATEMENT: prime sponsor of SB 146                                 
                                                                               
 David Koivuniemi, Acting Director                                             
 Division of Elections                                                         
 P.O. Box 110017, Juneau, AK 99811-0017¶465-4611                               
   POSITION STATEMENT: testified on SB 146                                     
                                                                               
 Barbara Whiting                                                               
 Division of Elections                                                         
 P.O. Box 110017, Juneau, AK 99811-0017¶465-4611                               
   POSITION STATEMENT: testified on SB 146                                     
                                                                               
 Representative Gary Davis                                                     
 State Capitol, Juneau, Alaska, 99801-1182¶465-2693                            
   POSITION STATEMENT: prime sponsor of HB 173                                 
                                                                               
  ACTION NARRATIVE                                                             
                                                                               
 TAPE 95-18, SIDE A                                                            
                                                                               
 Number 001                                                                    
 SSTA - 4/13/95                                                                
                                                                               
           SB 142 HUMAN RESOURCE INVESTMENT COUNCIL                          
                                                                               
 CHAIRMAN SHARP calls the Senate State Affairs Committee to order at           
 3:32 p.m. and brings up SB 142 as the first order of business                 
 before the committee.  The chairman notes that the committee does             
 not yet have a quorum, but will begin by taking testimony.                    
 Chairman Sharp calls the first witness.                                       
                                                                               
 Number 020                                                                    
 BRAD PIERCE, Senior Policy Analyst, Office of Management & Budget,            
 reads a written statement consisting of information contained in              
 the transmittal letter from the governor.                                     
                                                                               
 Number 098                                                                    
                                                                               
 MR. PIERCE reads a sectional analysis for SB 142.                             
                                                                               
 Number 190                                                                    
                                                                               
 SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS expresses concern over the fiscal note,                
 which is for a larger sum than last year's fiscal note.                       
                                                                               
 CHAIRMAN SHARP asks Mr. Pierce to explain why, since funding is               
 being transferred from other sources, the fiscal note is not a zero           
 fiscal note.  The chairman notes that when he sees a fiscal note              
 with money on it, that means additional funding.                              
                                                                               
 MR. PIERCE states there is no additional funding.  This is                    
 transferring money from existing programs to the Governor's Office.           
                                                                               
                                                                               
 SENATOR DUNCAN adds that the fiscal note he has shows interagency             
 receipts.  The funding source does not show under general funds, so           
 he would assume the money is already in the budget, and is not a              
 new expenditure.                                                              
                                                                               
 MR. PIERCE responds that is a correct observance.  He states the              
 fiscal note shows how the money is being transferred.                         
                                                                               
 SENATOR DUNCAN asks if there is any new money, since there will be            
 one new position created by SB 142.                                           
                                                                               
 MR. PIERCE replies that the cost of the new position is being                 
 absorbed.                                                                     
                                                                               
 Number 222                                                                    
                                                                               
 SENATOR LEMAN comments that a four person staff for the council               
 seems like a large staff.  Also, he thinks a board of 23 to 26                
 members is very large, and may be unwieldy.  Senator Leman asks if            
 there will be a net savings from SB 142.                                      
                                                                               
 Number 235                                                                    
                                                                               
 MR. PIERCE responds that a net savings over time is anticipated.              
 At this time, there are three poorly-staffed councils.  What SB 142           
 will do is give us one adequately-staffed council.  However, the              
 primary reason for SB 142 is not as a cost-saving measure: it is to           
 increase effectiveness in job-training programs.                              
                                                                               
 SENATOR LEMAN would like to see larger fiscal savings, while still            
 increasing efficiency.                                                        
                                                                               
 SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS asks Mr. Pierce if he has a copy of last               
 year's fiscal note.                                                           
                                                                               
 MR. PIERCE responds he probably has one in his office.  He                    
 reiterates that the fiscal note is a zero fiscal note, and there              
 will be no new expenditures due to SB 142.                                    
                                                                               
 CHAIRMAN SHARP asks Mr. Pierce if the council will just serve in an           
 advisory capacity in relation to the private industry councils                
 (pic).                                                                        
                                                                               
 MR. PIERCE replies that it will assume to functions of the Job                
 Training Coordinating Council, which currently oversees the pics.             
                                                                               
 Number 270                                                                    
                                                                               
 JERRY LEWIS, Executive Director, Governor's Council on Vocational             
 & Career Education, states the council supports SB 142.  He asks              
 that the committee consider including the School to Work Transition           
 Council under the umbrella of the Alaska Human Resource Investment            
 Council.  Mr. Lewis also suggests requiring that the chairperson of           
 the Alaska Human Resource Investment Council be from the private              
 sector.  He also suggests not requiring every member of every                 
 council to attend all meetings, because he did not think that would           
 be very workable.                                                             
                                                                               
 Number 311                                                                    
                                                                               
 SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS notes that his staff just looked up the                
 fiscal notes from last year: there were ten fiscal notes, and all             
 of them were zero.  He asks if there is a difference between last             
 year's bill and this year's bill.                                             
                                                                               
 MR. PEARCE responds that the bills are very similar; it is the same           
 zero fiscal note.  There are no new general fund monies.                      
                                                                               
 Number 319                                                                    
                                                                               
 CHAIRMAN SHARP asks Mr. Lewis about his recommendation that one of            
 the co-chairpersons be from the private sector.                               
                                                                               
 MR. LEWIS replies that the Governor's Council on Vocational &                 
 Career Education is recommending that, instead of co-chairs, the              
 new council have a chairperson and a vice-chairperson, with the               
 chairperson from the private sector.                                          
                                                                               
 Number 330                                                                    
                                                                               
 JAN TATLOW, Member, Private Industry Council, testifying from                 
 Matsu, states she is concerned with the composition of the council.           
 She recommends that the three private industry councils in the                
 state be given a seat on the new council to ensure a local linkage.           
                                                                               
 Number 350                                                                    
                                                                               
 DEBRA CALL, Chairperson, Alaska Job Training Council, testifying              
 from Anchorage, states she is a strong proponent of SB 142.  Ms.              
 Call thinks the current educational system is gearing students                
 toward college education, but in reality, only a small percentage             
 of students actually go to college.  She hopes this legislation               
 will help resolve the future for the students who do not go to                
 college.  Ms. Call also hopes SB 142 will help increase hiring and            
 employment opportunities for state residents.                                 
                                                                               
 MS. CALL states that consolidation of employment and training                 
 programs is also occurring on the national level and in other                 
 states.  We need a state council to set priorities based upon                 
 employment needs and opportunities within the state.  The existing            
 councils are only serving the requirements of the federal programs            
 which established the councils.  Ms. Call states also, that it is             
 her understanding that U.S. Senator Stevens is very supportive of             
 this legislation.                                                             
                                                                               
 Number 412                                                                    
                                                                               
 SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS asks Ms. Call if she has seen the fiscal               
 note for SB 142.                                                              
                                                                               
 MS. CALL responds she does not believe there is a fiscal note.                
 There will be no new general fund monies.                                     
                                                                               
 Number 417                                                                    
                                                                               
 SENATOR LEMAN asks Ms. Call if 23-26 members is necessary.                    
                                                                               
 MS. CALL replies the number of members reflects the recommendation            
 of the JTPA.                                                                  
                                                                               
 SENATOR LEMAN asks if that number is similar to the number                    
 specified in last year's bill.                                                
                                                                               
 MS. CALL thinks the number is similar.                                        
                                                                               
 MR. PIERCE adds that last year's bill did not consolidate the three           
 councils; it just created an additional council to oversee the                
 three existing councils.  The number of members does reflect the              
 requirements of JTPA.                                                         
                                                                               
 MS. CALL agrees that the size of the council could be cumbersome.             
                                                                               
 Number 451                                                                    
                                                                               
 MARY SHIELDS, testifying from Anchorage, informs the committee that           
 she runs a contract employment service.  Ms. Shields states she               
 supports SB 142.  She sees a lack of training opportunities for               
 people who are out of highschool or have dropped out of college.              
 She also sees a great many people returning to college for a second           
 degree because they are unable to get a job, even though they have            
 a college education.  In trying to help people find work, she                 
 understands how hard it is to be laid of from an industry in                  
 decline and have to be retrained for a different industry.  She has           
 seen these problems in both the oil and the logging industries.               
 Coordination of employment services will save time and money and              
 will be more efficient.                                                       
                                                                               
 Number 498                                                                    
                                                                               
 MS. SHIELDS informs the committee that U.S. Senator Stevens                   
 supports SB 142.                                                              
                                                                               
 Number 500                                                                    
                                                                               
 TEENY METCALF, Alaska Job Training Council, Department of Community           
 & Regional Affairs, testifying from Anchorage, states the                     
 department is in favor of SB 142.                                             
                                                                               
 CHAIRMAN SHARP notes that the legislation will be held over until             
 the next committee meeting.                                                   
                                                                               
 Number 510                                                                    
                                                                               
 SENATOR LEMAN asks what the language, "local public education"                
 means.                                                                        
                                                                               
 MR. PIERCE responds that refers to K-12 education.  He believes               
 that is a JTPA requirement.                                                   
                                                                               
 Number 520                                                                    
                                                                               
 CHAIRMAN SHARP states it is his intention to move SB 142 out at the           
 next committee meeting.                                                       
 SSTA - 4/13/95                                                                
                                                                               
           SB 146 ELECTION CODE AND ADMINISTRATION                           
                                                                               
 SENATOR SHARP brings up SB 146 as the next order of business before           
 the Senate State Affairs Committee and calls the first witness.               
                                                                               
 Number 527                                                                    
                                                                               
 SHERMAN ERNOUF, Aide to Senator Kelly, prime sponsor of SB 146,               
 reads the sponsor statement for the bill.                                     
 Number 540                                                                    
                                                                               
 MR. ERNOUF reviews the sectional analysis on SB 146.                          
                                                                               
 Number 560                                                                    
                                                                               
 MR. ERNOUF notes that three amendments proposed by Senator Kelly              
 have been submitted to the committee; members have those amendments           
 in their bill files.                                                          
                                                                               
 SENATOR DUNCAN asks if any employees of the Division of Elections             
 will be able to join collective bargaining units.                             
                                                                               
 DAVID KOIVUNIEMI, Acting Director of the Division of Elections,               
 responds that no employees will be able to join a collective                  
 bargaining unit.                                                              
                                                                               
 SENATOR DUNCAN asks if presently employees of the Division of                 
 Elections are members of collective bargaining units.                         
                                                                               
 Number 588                                                                    
                                                                               
 MR. KOIVUNIEMI responds, "No."  Presently, all employees of the               
 division are in the exempt service.  The amendment would retain               
 employees in the exempt service, however, they would be granted               
 some protections.                                                             
                                                                               
 TAPE 95-18, SIDE B                                                            
                                                                               
 Number 591                                                                    
                                                                               
 MR. KOIVUNIEMI states that the status of directors and supervisors            
 would not change at all.  However, other full-time employees of the           
 division would have some protections and could only have employment           
 terminated for cause.  There would be a grievance procedure, and              
 the department would be able to have a probationary period.  The              
 main objective is to prohibit what occurred in the division four              
 years ago, when the whole division was wiped out.                             
                                                                               
 Number 581                                                                    
                                                                               
 SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS asks what the Lieutenant Governor Ulmer's              
 position is on SB 146.                                                        
                                                                               
 MR. KOIVUNIEMI replies that the lieutenant governor supports the              
 amendments.                                                                   
                                                                               
 SENATOR DUNCAN asks if the lieutenant governor supports the bill.             
                                                                               
 MR. KOIVUNIEMI responds that the only sections Lieutenant Governor            
 Ulmer has not endorsed are those relating to the placement of names           
 on the primary election ballot by party petition.  She is taking a            
 neutral position on that section.                                             
                                                                               
 Number 560                                                                    
                                                                               
 SENATOR LEMAN asks which amendment repeals paying $0.50 for each              
 voter registration.                                                           
                                                                               
 MR. KOIVUNIEMI replies it is in amendment #1.  That has not been a            
 cost-efficient program.  For example, in March of 1995, we paid               
 registrars a total of $74.50.  The administration cost for doing so           
 was about $200 just for computer time; that does not include staff            
 time.  With mandatory voter registration at the Department of Motor           
 Vehicles and several other state agencies, we have registered over            
 19,900 voters just since January 1st of this year.  We are also               
 working with the Permanent Fund Dividend Division to develop voter            
 registration on pfd applications.                                             
                                                                               
 SENATOR LEMAN asks if the division supports the section relating to           
 rotation of names.                                                            
                                                                               
 MR. KOIVUNIEMI responds that the division does support that                   
 section.  It is estimated that provision will save about $105,000.            
                                                                               
 Number 528                                                                    
                                                                               
 SENATOR DUNCAN asks if there have been studies that show whether or           
 not rotating names on the ballot has an effect on how people vote.            
                                                                               
 MR. KOIVUNIEMI replies that in the studies he has seen, there                 
 appears to be an impact in non-partisan, low-profile races, such as           
 water district board elections.  In those types of races, it is               
 usually the first and last position on the ballot that get the most           
 votes.  But in higher profile races, from city council on up, there           
 is no discernable impact related to placement of names on the                 
 ballot.                                                                       
                                                                               
 Number 515                                                                    
                                                                               
 [There is a general discussion regarding the ballot rotation                  
 process.]                                                                     
                                                                               
 SENATOR LEMAN, SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS, and SENATOR DUNCAN all                 
 express concern about changing the ballot rotation process.                   
                                                                               
 Number 428                                                                    
                                                                               
 SENATOR DUNCAN makes a motion to adopt amendment #1.                          
                                                                               
 CHAIRMAN SHARP, hearing no objection, states amendment #1 has been            
 adopted.                                                                      
                                                                               
 Number 422                                                                    
 SENATOR LEMAN makes a motion to adopt amendment #2.                           
                                                                               
 CHAIRMAN SHARP, hearing no objection, states amendment #2 has been            
 adopted.                                                                      
                                                                               
 SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS makes a motion to adopt amendment #3.                  
                                                                               
 CHAIRMAN SHARP, hearing no objection, states amendment #3 has been            
 adopted.                                                                      
                                                                               
 Number 406                                                                    
                                                                               
 CHAIRMAN SHARP expresses concern regarding Section 17.                        
                                                                               
 MR. KOIVUNIEMI responds that section states that petition                     
 candidates will have to appear on the primary election ballot, and            
 not just on the general election ballot.                                      
                                                                               
 CHAIRMAN SHARP, after hearing that explanation, states he has no              
 further concern with Section 17.                                              
                                                                               
 SENATOR DUNCAN asks what happens if a candidate dies after the                
 primary election.                                                             
                                                                               
 MR. KOIVUNIEMI replies that it depends on when they die: if a                 
 candidate dies more than 48 days before the general election, then            
 their name will be removed from the ballot.  A political party can            
 make a substitution to a race for specific reasons, such as the               
 death, resignation, withdrawal, disqualification, etcetera, of a              
 candidate.                                                                    
                                                                               
 SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS makes a motion to delete Section 7.                    
                                                                               
 Number 365                                                                    
                                                                               
 CHAIRMAN SHARP, hearing no objection, states Section 7 has been               
 deleted.                                                                      
                                                                               
 Number 362                                                                    
                                                                               
 SENATOR LEMAN asks if there is a specific reason to require the               
 ballots to be printed on white paper.                                         
                                                                               
 MR. KOIVUNIEMI responds that is what is required in the general               
 election.                                                                     
                                                                               
 SENATOR LEMAN understands that the ballots should be the same                 
 color, but asks if there is any reason to specify white.  Is it               
 less expensive?                                                               
                                                                               
 BARB WHITING, Division of Elections replies it is probably cheaper            
 and easier to read.                                                           
 SENATOR LEMAN asks, if there is an off-white, recycled paper that             
 is cheaper than white paper, would the division be able to use the            
 recycled paper?                                                               
                                                                               
 MR. KOIVUNIEMI replies the division would consider something like             
 that to be white.                                                             
                                                                               
 SENATOR LEMAN makes a motion to discharge SB 146 from the Senate              
 State Affairs Committee with individual recommendations.                      
                                                                               
 Number 345                                                                    
                                                                               
 CHAIRMAN SHARP, hearing no objection, orders SB 146 released from             
 committee with individual recommendations.                                    
 SSTA - 4/13/95                                                                
                                                                               
              HB 173 REPORTS TO THE LEGISLATURE                              
                                                                               
 SENATOR SHARP brings up HB 173 as the next order of business before           
 the Senate State Affairs Committee and calls the first witness.               
                                                                               
 Number 341                                                                    
                                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE GARY DAVIS, prime sponsor of HB 173, reads the                 
 sponsor statement for the bill.                                               
                                                                               
 Number 293                                                                    
                                                                               
 SENATOR LEMAN makes a motion to discharge HB 173 from the Senate              
 State Affairs Committee with individual recommendations.                      
                                                                               
 Number 291                                                                    
                                                                               
 CHAIRMAN SHARP, hearing no objection, orders HB 173 released from             
 committee with individual recommendations.                                    
 Number 280                                                                    
                                                                               
 CHAIRMAN SHARP adjourns the Senate State Affairs Committee meeting            
 at 4:48 p.m.                                                                  
                                                                               

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