Legislature(2003 - 2004)

02/11/2003 03:30 PM STA

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
                    ALASKA STATE LEGISLATURE                                                                                  
            SENATE STATE AFFAIRS STANDING COMMITTEE                                                                           
                       February 11, 2003                                                                                        
                           3:30 p.m.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Senator Robin Taylor, Chair                                                                                                     
Senator Fred Dyson                                                                                                              
Senator Gretchen Guess                                                                                                          
Senator Lyman Hoffman                                                                                                           
Senator John Cowdery                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                              
SENATE BILL NO. 9                                                                                                               
"An Act  relating to  the evaluation  and cleanup  of sites  where                                                              
certain  controlled  substances  may  have  been  manufactured  or                                                              
stored; and providing for an effective date."                                                                                   
     MOVED CSSB 9 (STA) OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
SENATE CONCURRENT RESOLUTION NO. 1                                                                                              
Relating   to  economic   development   generated   by  new   road                                                              
construction  and  to  the  design and  construction  of  the  Hot                                                              
Springs  Loop Road  to connect Chena  Hot Springs  and Circle  Hot                                                              
Springs.                                                                                                                        
     MOVED CSSCR 1 (STA) OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
SENATE JOINT RESOLUTION NO. 5                                                                                                   
Urging  the President  of the United  States  and the Congress  to                                                              
act  to  ensure  that  federal  agencies  do  not  retain  records                                                              
relating  to lawful  purchase or  ownership  of firearms  gathered                                                              
through the Brady Handgun Bill instant check system.                                                                            
     MOVED CSSJR 5 (STA) OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
SENATE JOINT RESOLUTION NO. 6                                                                                                   
Proposing  an  amendment  to  the Constitution  of  the  State  of                                                              
Alaska relating to the duration of a regular session.                                                                           
     HEARD AND HELD                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
PREVIOUS ACTION                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                              
SB 9 - No previous action to record.                                                                                          
SCR 1 - No previous action to record.                                                                                           
SJR 5 - No previous action to record.                                                                                           
SJR 6 - No previous action to record.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
WITNESS REGISTER                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                              
Tim Rogers                                                                                                                      
Municipality of Anchorage                                                                                                       
P.O. Box 196650                                                                                                                 
Anchorage, Alaska 99510                                                                                                         
POSITION STATEMENT:  Supports SB 9                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Al Storey                                                                                                                       
Department of Public Safety                                                                                                     
PO Box 111200                                                                                                                   
Juneau, AK  99811-1200                                                                                                          
POSITION STATEMENT:  Supports SB 9                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Kurt Kornchuk                                                                                                                   
Anchorage Police Department                                                                                                     
Anchorage, Alaska 99510                                                                                                         
POSITION STATEMENT:  Supports SB 9                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Larry Dietrick                                                                                                                  
Director, Division of Spill Prevention & Response                                                                               
Department of Environmental Conservation                                                                                        
410 Willoughby                                                                                                                  
Juneau, AK 99801-1795                                                                                                           
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified on SB 9                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Senator Gary Wilken                                                                                                             
Alaska State Capitol                                                                                                            
Juneau, AK  99801-1182                                                                                                          
POSITION STATEMENT: Sponsor SCR 1                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Mac Carter                                                                                                                      
President, Community of Central                                                                                                 
Central, Alaska 99730                                                                                                           
POSITION STATEMENT:  Supports SCR 1                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Amy Seitz                                                                                                                       
Staff to Senator Wagoner                                                                                                        
Alaska State Capitol                                                                                                            
Juneau, AK  99801-1182                                                                                                          
POSITION STATEMENT: Introduced SJR 5                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Carl Rosier                                                                                                                     
Territorial Sportsman Representative                                                                                            
Juneau, AK 99801                                                                                                                
POSITION STATEMENT: Supports SJR 5                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
ACTION NARRATIVE                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
TAPE 03-2, SIDE A                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  ROBIN  TAYLOR  called the  Senate  State  Affairs  Standing                                                            
Committee  meeting to  order at  3:30 p.m.  Present were  Senators                                                              
Guess, Hoffman, Dyson, and Chair Taylor.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
The first order of business was SB 9.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
              SB 9 - CLEANUP OF ILLEGAL DRUG SITES                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR GUESS,  bill sponsor,  explained the  purpose of  the bill                                                              
is to  ensure illegal drug  sites are cleaned  up before  they are                                                              
reoccupied.  The responsibility  for the clean  up rests  with the                                                              
property  owner although  the government  does  set standards  and                                                              
procedures for the clean up.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
In  Alaska  there  are  between  25  and  50  sites  that  require                                                              
cleaning  each  year.  It's  important  these  sites  are  cleaned                                                              
because of the adverse health effects on children in particular.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR GUESS  advised members  the bill  passed the House  during                                                              
the  previous  session  and  had been  scheduled  for  the  Senate                                                              
floor.  She introduced  a  draft  committee substitute  (CS)  that                                                              
made two  changes. At  the request of  law enforcement,  she added                                                              
new drugs  and chemicals to the  list. This change occurs  on page                                                              
5 beginning  on line 16.  The second change  is at the  request of                                                              
the  Administration  to  make  sure  the  testing  procedures  are                                                              
adequate  and  the  sampling  of the  site  is  appropriate.  This                                                              
change  occurs  on  page  4,  line  30.  The  Administration  also                                                              
requested a  change on page 6, line  9 making it possible  for the                                                              
owner  to  certify  and  submit  satisfactory  evidence  that  the                                                              
property is clean.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
In  Alaska there  is  currently  no process  to  follow after  law                                                              
enforcement  posts a  notice on  a property  following an  illegal                                                              
lab bust. SB 9  will ensure the property owner is  notified of the                                                              
procedures  of  sampling,  testing and  decontamination  and  that                                                              
they self  certify that  all the procedures  have been  met before                                                              
the property  is reoccupied.  She noted a  property could  be sold                                                              
prior to  clean up provided the  owner disclosed the  condition of                                                              
the property.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
To date no police  force or municipality has  stated any objection                                                              
to the bill.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR TAYLOR  asked the record  to reflect Senator  Cowdery joined                                                              
the meeting.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR TAYLOR  called for a motion  to adopt the CS  for discussion                                                              
purposes.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  COWDERY made  a motion  to  adopt 23-LSO186\H  Lauterbach                                                              
2/11/03 as the work draft.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
There being no objection it was so ordered.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR COWDERY asked  whether the state would  be responsible for                                                              
clean  up of  the  sites, since  the Department  of  Environmental                                                              
Conservation  (DEC)  has  the  testing   equipment,  and  would  a                                                              
borough or municipality be financially responsible.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR GUESS  said DEC would set  the clean up standards  but the                                                              
property owner would be the responsible party.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR COWDERY asked whether lien holders would be notified.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  GUESS  said  the  property   owner  of  record  would  be                                                              
notified.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR COWDERY  pointed out  the property  owner and  lien holder                                                              
were not one and the same.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR GUESS  replied, to  her knowledge,  the lien holder  would                                                              
be notified as well.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR COWDERY  asked about neighbor  notification in  multi unit                                                              
facilities and who  would be responsible for residuals  that might                                                              
migrate to adjoining units such as in a town home.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR GUESS  replied it  is her intent  that the property  owner                                                              
where the  bust was made  is responsible  for the entire  clean up                                                              
including  any  residuals  that  might  migrate  to  adjoining  or                                                              
adjacent units.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
She thought  someone from law  enforcement could explain  how they                                                              
handle notification in multi unit complexes.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  COWDERY  asked  how an  adjoining  property  owner  would                                                              
become aware of an  event if they were away from  home at the time                                                              
of the posting and  arrived home after the clean  up was completed                                                              
and the sign was removed.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR GUESS  replied that case  is not explicitly  addressed but                                                              
it was a matter of how law enforcement agencies notify.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR COWDERY then  asked if the bill includes  every controlled                                                              
substance.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR GUESS  said it includes  those substances  law enforcement                                                              
and other experts deem hazardous to human health.                                                                               
SENATOR  COWDERY asked  whether  there was  anything currently  in                                                              
statute or  regulation setting contamination  levels to  trigger a                                                              
clean up.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR GUESS replied there is nothing in regulation or statute.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  TAYLOR pointed  out  required notification  information  is                                                              
given  beginning on  page 1,  line 13  and concluding  on page  3,                                                              
line  18. However,  he didn't  find  mention of  a requirement  to                                                              
notify lien holders.  He asked whether the bill  contained all the                                                              
changes  requested   when  the  bill  was  heard   in  the  Senate                                                              
Judiciary Committee the previous session.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR GUESS assured him the changes were included.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  DYSON agreed  with  Senator  Guess that  property  owners                                                              
have an  obligation to  know what happens  on their  property, but                                                              
he wondered  whether the  bill addressed  the drug  manufacturer's                                                              
responsibility for decontamination costs.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR   GUESS   replied  the   bill   does  not   address   that                                                              
responsibility.  That would  have  to be  in the  rental or  lease                                                              
agreement.  Page 4,  line 5  says  the lease  or rental  agreement                                                              
isn't  voided  so a  property  owner  could look  for  restitution                                                              
under that  contract. She has  yet to find  a way to  place direct                                                              
responsibility on  the shoulders  of the individual(s)  who caused                                                              
the contamination.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  DYSON noted  tradition suggests  the person  who did  the                                                              
harm  pays for  the  remedy and  property  owners  should be  held                                                              
responsible  only after all  opportunities  to recapture  clean up                                                              
costs from  the perpetrator  have been  exhausted. He  admitted to                                                              
the   difficulty  involved   in  that   approach.  Although   drug                                                              
manufacturing  is lucrative, the  manufacturer frequently  has few                                                              
or no resources to attach.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
He asked  whether property  owners would be  required to do  a pre                                                              
test before starting clean up procedures.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  GUESS said  there is  no pre  test requirement;  property                                                              
owners may clean up then test.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR DYSON asked how much the testing might cost.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  GUESS said  estimates  range from  one  and two  thousand                                                              
dollars per site.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  COWDERY  expressed continued  concern  about  contaminant                                                              
migration in  condominium and town  home situations.  Although the                                                              
intent is good,  he is troubled about ultimate  responsibility and                                                              
the  level  of  contamination  that   would  trigger  a  clean  up                                                              
requirement.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  GUESS  said  she  would   make  sure  his  concerns  were                                                              
addressed.  She  made it  clear  the  process  starts when  a  law                                                              
enforcement officer determines there has been an illegal lab.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  DYSON admitted  to  having  reservations  about the  bill                                                              
saying he must remind  himself of the central issue,  which is the                                                              
health of  the next tenant  or owner. He  thought there  should be                                                              
ways  to make  sure judges  pay attention  to getting  restitution                                                              
for property owners for clean up costs when imposing sentences.                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR TAYLOR  clarified that under  a rental agreement there  is a                                                              
requirement to return  the property, fair wear  and tear excepted,                                                              
in  the  same condition  as  when  rented.  A security  or  damage                                                              
deposit  is   usually  given  to   secure  this   agreement.  That                                                              
contractual relationship  is available  for the property  owner to                                                              
bring a suit  against the individual  for a minimum of  six years.                                                              
Because the  owner would be  notified almost immediately  if their                                                              
property  was posted  as an  illegal  drug site,  the owner  could                                                              
quickly  find  out  the  extent   of  their  obligations  and  the                                                              
potential  costs  of  clean up.  Restitution  would  be  available                                                              
through  the criminal  action  at sentencing  or  through a  civil                                                              
action  brought by  the  damaged property  owner  after the  fact.                                                              
Unfortunately, frequently there are no assets to attach.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR TAYLOR asked Tim Rogers whether he had anything to add.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
TIM  ROGERS  testified  via  teleconference  the  Municipality  of                                                              
Anchorage supports the bill.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
AL STOREY testified  via teleconference the Alaska  State Troopers                                                              
support the legislation.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
KURT   KORNCHUK,  Anchorage   Police  Department   representative,                                                              
testified  via teleconference  and  reported  there  were 25  drug                                                              
labs seized in 2000,  35 in 2001 and to date  they have cleaned up                                                              
13 drug  labs in  2003. Any  law enforcement  officer involved  in                                                              
the seizure  of the labs  has been involved  in at least  40 hours                                                              
of training.  They are generally  able to identify sites  that are                                                              
grossly contaminated  and could bring DEC in  to determine whether                                                              
contaminants  had migrated.  He said the  department does  support                                                              
the legislation.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  TAYLOR  expressed  concern  about  enforcement  personnel's                                                              
exposure to contaminants.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
He then asked Larry  Dietrick why it would cost  the state $98,000                                                              
to develop the regulations and protocols.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
LARRY  DIETRICK, Acting  Director for  the DEC  Division of  Spill                                                              
Prevention  and Response, explained  the fiscal  note is  based on                                                              
the prior  bill and  reflects the  costs associated with  property                                                              
owners  providing evidence  to the  department that  the clean  up                                                              
was  done.  The  department  was to  review  the  information  and                                                              
verify that decontamination,  sampling and testing was  done to an                                                              
acceptable  standard. This  was  a review  and approval  capacity,                                                              
which would require an estimated half time position.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
The\H  version  CS  reflects  the  self-certification  provisions,                                                              
which would drop  the annual $58,200 Personal Services  costs from                                                              
the  fiscal  note.  Contractual  costs  of  $35,000  are  for  the                                                              
department  to  work  with  a  clean   up  contractor  to  develop                                                              
standards   for   the   property    owner.   Analytical   methods,                                                              
contaminant  standards,  sampling  protocols,  laboratory  methods                                                              
and decontamination  methods would  be established. The  intent is                                                              
to develop a book  the property owner could use to  plan and carry                                                              
out the clean up.  The $35,000 is a one-time cost.  Out year costs                                                              
of  $11,000  are contingency  costs  for  additional  contaminants                                                              
that weren't initially identified.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  TAYLOR observed  the out  year costs  are hypothetical  and                                                              
significant.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR COWDERY  asked if  the owners could  perform the  clean up                                                              
work.                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
MR.  DIETRICK  explained  the  intent  of  the  bill  is  for  the                                                              
department to establish  the procedures and the  property owner to                                                              
consult those guidelines and see that the work is done.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR COWDERY  asked if  drug clean up  presented a  hazard like                                                              
asbestos abatement.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
MR. DIETRICK replied  the current draft of the bill  calls for the                                                              
department  to maintain a  list of  contractors with expertise  to                                                              
perform analysis  and clean  up. Some  states require  contractors                                                              
to be  certified by the  state, but that  isn't what  is currently                                                              
proposed. For the  smaller situations that are  generally found in                                                              
Alaska, listing rather than certification is acceptable.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR TAYLOR  made a motion  to amend by  inserting "and  any lien                                                              
holders of  record" after the  word "property"  on page 2,  line 3                                                              
and after the word "property" on page 3, line 7.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
There was no objection to amendment 1.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
There was no further testimony.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR TAYLOR asked for a motion to move the bill from committee.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR COWDERY  made a motion to  move CSSB 9 (STA)  and modified                                                              
fiscal note from committee with individual recommendations.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
There being no objection it was so ordered.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
           SCR  1-SUPPORT ROADS/HOT SPRINGS LOOP ROAD                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR GARY  WILKEN, bill sponsor,  explained the  resolution was                                                              
about  more than  just building  a  road. He  used a  map to  show                                                              
members the  Steese Highway leading  northeast from  Fairbanks 130                                                              
miles  to  Central  and  Circle  Hot Springs  and  the  Chena  Hot                                                              
Springs Road  leading east  from Fairbanks about  60 miles  to the                                                              
Chena  Hot  Springs.  Both  hot springs  are  well  developed  and                                                              
provide Alaskans  and Alaska  visitors a  great deal of  pleasure.                                                              
To him this  is an obvious  loop road and the  resolution supports                                                              
looking at  the feasibility  of connecting the  two. There  are RS                                                              
2477 rights of way that have yet to be identified.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
This  is  the  first  time  in the  seven  years  he  has  been  a                                                              
legislator that there  has been support for building  roads. There                                                              
are many roads  around the state that individuals  are asking this                                                              
legislature to support.  SCR 1 is the vehicle  for the legislature                                                              
to express  their support to the  Governor for building  roads for                                                              
economic development in Alaska.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  COWDERY  asked  if there  are  any  obvious  engineering,                                                              
construction or  geologic difficulties associated  with connecting                                                              
the two roads.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR WILKEN wasn't  aware of any such difficulties.  The Steese                                                              
National Conservation  Area lies  between the  hot springs  so the                                                              
road would  have to go through or  around that area. The  area was                                                              
studied in the 1980s but the study has not been located.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR TAYLOR asked what the length of the road would be.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR WILKEN  replied it would depend  on the route,  but as the                                                              
crow flies, it would be about 40 miles.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR HOFFMAN  asked if both hot  springs are in the  North Star                                                              
Borough.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR WILKEN  said just the  Chena Hot  Springs is in  the North                                                              
Star Borough.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  HOFFMAN asked  whether  the North  Star Borough  supports                                                              
the resolution.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR WILKEN replied  he had every indication  the assembly will                                                              
support the resolution, but they haven't taken it up yet.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR HOFFMAN  asked which borough has jurisdiction  over Circle                                                              
Hot Springs.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  WILKEN  replied it  is  in  an  unorganized area  of  the                                                              
state.                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR TAYLOR  asked whether  he would  oppose an amendment  adding                                                              
the Bradfield Road.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR WILKEN did not object.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR TAYLOR introduced  work draft 23-LS0228\H  Utermohle 2/11/03                                                              
and  said he  would  entertain  a motion  to  adopt  the same  for                                                              
discussion purposes.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR COWDERY  made a  motion to adopt  amendment 1,  work draft                                                              
23-LS0228\H Utermohle 2/11/03 for discussion purposes.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
There being no objection amendment 1 was adopted.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR TAYLOR  said he didn't  have a map,  but the purpose  of the                                                              
amendment  is to  add that  project to  the bill.  He thought  the                                                              
bill would grow over time.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
He said he would  entertain a motion to amend to  add the Knik Arm                                                              
Crossing.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR COWDERY made  a conceptual motion to include  the Knik Arm                                                              
Crossing in SCR 1.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
There being no objection amendment 2 was adopted.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR DYSON  made a conceptual  motion to include the  road from                                                              
Iliamna Bay to  Pile Bay in SCR  1. A pioneer road runs  from salt                                                              
water  on Cook  Inlet  to the  northeast  corner  of Lake  Iliamna                                                              
making  the river  toward  Lake  Clark and  the  Kvichak River  to                                                              
Bristol  Bay  accessible.  That road  could  be  a major  link  to                                                              
developing major  gold and other minerals  in the area  as well as                                                              
giving  residents  an  alternative  source for  freight  and  fuel                                                              
delivery.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR TAYLOR asked about the length of the road.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR DYSON replied it was just 15 miles.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
There being no objection amendment 3 was adopted.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
MAC  CARTER,   Central,  Alaska   representative,  testified   his                                                              
community is very  enthusiastic in its support  of the resolution.                                                              
The economic opportunity  would foster new business  and community                                                              
growth.  The bill  speaks to  the need  for Alaska  to expand  its                                                              
infrastructure.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
SIDE B                                                                                                                          
4:20 p.m.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR TAYLOR asked for a motion.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  COWDERY  made  a  motion  to  move  CSSCR  1  (STA)  from                                                              
committee with individual recommendations.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
There being no objection it was so ordered.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
               SJR  5-DESTROY BRADY BILL RECORDS                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
AMY  SEITZ, staff  to Senator  Wagoner,  introduced the  committee                                                              
substitute (CS)  for SJR 5. She  explained that on page  2, line 9                                                              
the word  "prevent" was  deleted and  "ensure that" was  inserted.                                                              
On  the same  line, "comply  with  the law  prohibiting them"  was                                                              
inserted  after the  word "agencies".  She  explained the  changes                                                              
are wording preferences.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR TAYLOR noted the sponsor was absent.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
MS.  SEITZ  told him  Senator  Wagoner  was in  another  committee                                                              
meeting.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR TAYLOR said  that was understandable and  he appreciated her                                                              
appearance to explain the changes.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
He called for a motion to adopt the CS.                                                                                         
SENATOR COWDERY  made a motion  to adopt CS 23-LS0182\H  Luckhaupt                                                              
2/6/03.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
There being no objection it was so ordered.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR TAYLOR  explained the  bill would  impact the Brady  Handgun                                                              
Bill  and  the  instant  check  system  required  by  the  federal                                                              
government.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CARL ROSIER,  Territorial Sportsmen  representative, testified  in                                                              
strong support  of the resolution.  He wasn't previously  aware of                                                              
the CS, but the proposed wording changes were acceptable.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
There was no further testimony on SJR 5.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR TAYLOR called for a motion to move the bill.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR DYSON made  a motion to move CSSJR 5  (STA) from committee                                                              
with individual recommendations.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
There being no objection the bill moved from committee.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
          SJR  6-CONST AM: 90 DAY LEGISLATIVE SESSION                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  GRETCHEN GUESS,  bill sponsor,  explained the  resolution                                                              
would place  a constitutional  amendment on  the ballot  to change                                                              
the current  120-day legislative  session to a 90-day  legislative                                                              
session.  She opined legislators  could accomplish  their  work in                                                              
that time frame and save the state $888 thousand a year.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR TAYLOR called for questions.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR COWDERY  asked whether  she would  support elimination  of                                                              
the five-day notification rule.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR GUESS said she would give it some thought.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR TAYLOR  said the  issue needs  periodic debate.  Legislators                                                              
haven't  received  a salary  increase  for  16 years  and  perhaps                                                              
reducing  the length  of the session  would allow  more people  to                                                              
participate in the legislative process.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
He thought  the work  could be  accomplished  in a shortened  time                                                              
frame,  but he  couldn't say  whether  it would  result in  better                                                              
legislation for the people of Alaska.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR COWDERY  noted he has  been as busy  in the interim  as he                                                              
is during the 120-day session.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR TAYLOR  said legislative  leaders always  have demands  upon                                                              
their time and are  busy year round. The questions  of how they go                                                              
about doing  business and whether more  or less should  be done in                                                              
the interim are policy calls that are deserving of review.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR DYSON identified  with the Chair's ambiguous  feelings and                                                              
expressed  a desire to  hear additional  testimony before  passing                                                              
the  bill to  the next  committee.  He wanted  to  hear about  any                                                              
impacts  experienced  by  other   states  after  shortening  their                                                              
legislative  sessions.  He  also  wanted to  hear  from  political                                                              
scientists because  he could argue that shortening  session length                                                              
could change  the balance of  power vis-à-vis the  administration.                                                              
In  addition  it  might  rob  power  from  a  minority  that  uses                                                              
deadlines to force the majority into accommodations.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
He asked  what the  other committees  of referral  were and  where                                                              
the Chair expected the continued debate to occur.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  TAYLOR replied  the next  committee is  Judiciary and  then                                                              
the  bill would  be  referred to  Finance  because  a fiscal  note                                                              
would be attached to put the issue on the ballot.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
He  anticipates the  major  debate would  occur  in the  Judiciary                                                              
Committee.  The Senate  President  is seated  there  and he  hopes                                                              
they  would  take the  time  to  discuss  the bill.  Moving  bills                                                              
stimulates interest in a debate.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR DYSON  said that would be  fine, but because it  is a bill                                                              
dealing  with a fundamental  role  of a branch  of government,  he                                                              
thought State  Affairs is the  committee where substantive  debate                                                              
on the philosophical and policy issues should occur.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  GUESS  made  a  commitment  to  Senator  Dyson  to  begin                                                              
collecting  information on  lessons learned  from other states  as                                                              
well as from the academic community.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR TAYLOR  had no objection  to holding additional  hearings in                                                              
the State  Affairs Committee,  but he  contends movement  from one                                                              
committee   to   another   serves  to   stimulate   interest   and                                                              
discussion.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
He said  he would entertain  a motion to  move the bill,  but none                                                              
was forthcoming.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  DYSON assured  members his  questions were  not meant  to                                                              
kill the  bill and  he looked forward  to hearing enlightened  and                                                              
expert opinion on the matter.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  TAYLOR held  SJR  6 in  committee  and  announced the  bill                                                              
would be heard in two weeks.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
There  being no  further business  to come  before the  committee,                                                              
Chair Taylor adjourned the meeting at 4:49 p                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                

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