Legislature(2003 - 2004)

05/01/2004 04:14 PM STA

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
*** Immediately Following Session ***
+ SJR 34 TAIWAN STATUS AND PRESIDENT TELECONFERENCED
Moved CSSJR 34(WTR) Out of Committee
+ SCR 25 STATE CONSTRUCTION/MAINTENANCE CONTRACTS TELECONFERENCED
<Above Item Removed from Agenda>
+ HB 379 OFFICE OF CITIZENSHIP ASSISTANCE TELECONFERENCED
Moved HB 379 Out of Committee
+ HB 366 ANIMAL CLASSICS CHARITABLE GAMING TELECONFERENCED
Moved CSHB 366(FIN) Out of Committee
+ HB 490 EMPLOYMENT SECURITY ACT AMENDMENTS TELECONFERENCED
Moved CSHB 490(JUD) am Out of Committee
+ HB 309 PROHIBIT RELEASE OF PREDATORY FISH TELECONFERENCED
Moved CSHB 309(JUD) am Out of Committee
+ HB 351 CARBON MONOXIDE DETECTION DEVICES TELECONFERENCED
Moved CSHB 351(JUD) Out of Committee
Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled
+= HB 405 SCHOOL PERFORMANCE DESIGNATION/REPORT TELECONFERENCED
Moved CSHB 405(EDU) Out of Committee
+= HB 373 STATE TREASURY WARRANTS TELECONFERENCED
Moved HB 373 Out of Committee
                    ALASKA STATE LEGISLATURE                                                                                  
            SENATE STATE AFFAIRS STANDING COMMITTEE                                                                           
                          May 1, 2004                                                                                           
                           4:14 p.m.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
TAPE (S) 04-30&31                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                              
MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Senator Gary Stevens, Chair                                                                                                     
Senator John Cowdery, Vice Chair                                                                                                
Senator Bert Stedman                                                                                                            
Senator Gretchen Guess                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Senator Lyman Hoffman                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
SENATE JOINT RESOLUTION NO. 34                                                                                                  
Sending a  message of goodwill  to President Chen  Shui-bian, and                                                               
reaffirming  the  Alaska   State  Legislature's  2003  resolution                                                               
urging  the United  States Congress  to support  the granting  of                                                               
official Observer Status to the  Republic of China and to support                                                               
negotiation  of  a free  trade  agreement  with the  Republic  of                                                               
China.                                                                                                                          
     MOVED CSSJR 34(WTR) OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
SENATE CONCURRENT RESOLUTION NO. 25                                                                                             
Relating to  state agency construction and  maintenance contracts                                                               
throughout the state.                                                                                                           
     REMOVED FROM AGENDA                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 379                                                                                                              
"An Act establishing  an office of citizenship  assistance in the                                                               
Department of Labor and Workforce Development."                                                                                 
     MOVED HB 379 OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 366(FIN)                                                                                                  
"An  Act  relating  to  animal  classic  charitable  gaming;  and                                                               
providing for an effective date."                                                                                               
     MOVED CSHB 366(FIN) OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 490(JUD) am                                                                                               
"An Act relating  to the release of  employment security records,                                                               
to the  binding effect of determinations  and decisions regarding                                                               
unemployment   compensation  benefits,   and  to   contributions,                                                               
interest,  penalties, and  payments under  the Alaska  Employment                                                               
Security   Act;  providing   that  property   under  the   Alaska                                                               
Employment Security Act  is not subject to  the Uniform Unclaimed                                                               
Property Act; and providing for an effective date."                                                                             
     MOVED CSHB 490(JUD) am OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 309(JUD) am                                                                                               
"An Act relating to nonindigenous fish."                                                                                        
     MOVED CSHB 309(JUD) am OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 405(EDU)                                                                                                  
"An  Act  relating  to  reports on  school  and  school  district                                                               
performance;  and relating  to accountability  of public  schools                                                               
and school districts; and providing for an effective date."                                                                     
     MOVED CSHB 405(EDU) OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 351(JUD)                                                                                                  
"An  Act  relating  to the  devices,  including  carbon  monoxide                                                               
detection devices,  required in  dwellings; and providing  for an                                                               
effective date."                                                                                                                
     MOVED CSHB 351(JUD) OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 373                                                                                                              
"An   Act  requiring   warrants  drawn   by  the   Department  of                                                               
Administration  against  the  state  treasury  to  be  negotiable                                                               
instruments."                                                                                                                   
     MOVED HB 373 OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
PREVIOUS COMMITTEE ACTION                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
BILL: SJR 34                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE: TAIWAN STATUS AND PRESIDENT                                                                                        
SPONSOR(s):  RULES   BY  REQUEST  OF  WORLD   TRADE  &  STATE/FED                                                               
RELATIONS                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
04/22/04       (S)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
04/22/04       (S)       WTR, STA                                                                                               
04/26/04       (S)       WTR AT 4:00 PM BELTZ 211                                                                               
04/26/04       (S)       Moved CSSJR 34(WTR) Out of Committee                                                                   
04/26/04       (S)       MINUTE(WTR)                                                                                            
04/27/04       (S)       WTR RPT CS 5DP                NEW TITLE                                                                
04/27/04       (S)       DP: COWDERY, GUESS, OLSON,                                                                             
04/27/04       (S)       WAGONER, THERRIAULT                                                                                    
05/01/04       (S)       STA AT 0:00 AM BELTZ 211                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
BILL: HB 379                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE: OFFICE OF CITIZENSHIP ASSISTANCE                                                                                   
SPONSOR(s): REPRESENTATIVE(s) WEYHRAUCH                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
01/20/04       (H)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        

01/20/04 (H) L&C, FIN 03/05/04 (H) L&C AT 3:15 PM CAPITOL 17 03/05/04 (H) -- Meeting Canceled -- 03/19/04 (H) L&C AT 3:15 PM CAPITOL 17 03/19/04 (H) Scheduled But Not Heard 03/22/04 (H) L&C AT 3:15 PM CAPITOL 17 03/22/04 (H) Moved Out of Committee 03/22/04 (H) MINUTE(L&C) 03/24/04 (H) L&C RPT 2DP 5NR 03/24/04 (H) DP: LYNN, ANDERSON; NR: CRAWFORD, 03/24/04 (H) GATTO, ROKEBERG, DAHLSTROM, GUTTENBERG 04/21/04 (H) FIN RPT 9DP 2NR 04/21/04 (H) DP: MEYER, HAWKER, JOULE, CROFT, FATE, 04/21/04 (H) CHENAULT, FOSTER, HARRIS, WILLIAMS; 04/21/04 (H) NR: STOLTZE, MOSES 04/21/04 (H) FIN AT 8:30 AM HOUSE FINANCE 519 04/21/04 (H) Moved Out of Committee 04/21/04 (H) MINUTE(FIN) 04/27/04 (H) TRANSMITTED TO (S) 04/27/04 (H) VERSION: HB 379 04/28/04 (S) READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS 04/28/04 (S) STA, FIN 05/01/04 (S) STA AT 0:00 AM BELTZ 211 BILL: HB 366 SHORT TITLE: ANIMAL CLASSICS CHARITABLE GAMING SPONSOR(s): REPRESENTATIVE(s) STOLTZE

01/12/04 (H) PREFILE RELEASED (1/9/04)

01/12/04 (H) READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS

01/12/04 (H) STA, FIN

01/29/04 (H) STA AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 102

01/29/04 (H) Heard & Held

01/29/04 (H) MINUTE(STA) 02/05/04 (H) STA RPT 3DP 1NR 2AM 02/05/04 (H) DP: GRUENBERG, SEATON, LYNN; 02/05/04 (H) NR: WEYHRAUCH; AM: HOLM, COGHILL 02/05/04 (H) STA AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 102 02/05/04 (H) Moved Out of Committee 02/05/04 (H) MINUTE(STA) 04/22/04 (H) FIN AT 1:30 PM HOUSE FINANCE 519 04/22/04 (H) Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled 04/23/04 (H) FIN AT 8:30 AM HOUSE FINANCE 519 04/23/04 (H) -- Rescheduled from Thurs 4/22/04 1:30 -- 04/26/04 (H) FIN RPT CS(FIN) NT 3DP 3NR 04/26/04 (H) DP: STOLTZE, CHENAULT, MEYER; 04/26/04 (H) NR: HAWKER, JOULE, FATE 04/27/04 (H) TRANSMITTED TO (S) 04/27/04 (H) VERSION: CSHB 366(FIN) 04/28/04 (S) READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS 04/28/04 (S) STA, FIN 05/01/04 (S) STA AT 0:00 AM BELTZ 211 BILL: HB 490 SHORT TITLE: EMPLOYMENT SECURITY ACT AMENDMENTS SPONSOR(s): RULES BY REQUEST OF THE GOVERNOR 02/16/04 (H) READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS 02/16/04 (H) L&C, JUD 03/22/04 (H) L&C AT 3:15 PM CAPITOL 17 03/22/04 (H) Scheduled But Not Heard 03/24/04 (H) L&C AT 3:15 PM CAPITOL 17 03/24/04 (H) Moved Out of Committee 03/24/04 (H) MINUTE(L&C) 03/25/04 (H) L&C RPT 4DP 3NR 03/25/04 (H) DP: LYNN, GATTO, DAHLSTROM, ANDERSON; 03/25/04 (H) NR: CRAWFORD, ROKEBERG, GUTTENBERG 04/07/04 (H) JUD AT 1:00 PM CAPITOL 120 04/07/04 (H) Moved CSHB 490(JUD) Out of Committee 04/07/04 (H) MINUTE(JUD) 04/14/04 (H) JUD RPT CS(JUD) NT 5NR 04/14/04 (H) NR: SAMUELS, HOLM, GARA, GRUENBERG, 04/14/04 (H) MCGUIRE 04/21/04 (H) TRANSMITTED TO (S) 04/21/04 (H) VERSION: CSHB 490(JUD) AM 04/22/04 (S) READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS 04/22/04 (S) STA, L&C 05/01/04 (S) STA AT 0:00 AM BELTZ 211 BILL: HB 309 SHORT TITLE: CRIMES: NONINDIGENOUS FISH ; SENTENCING SPONSOR(s): REPRESENTATIVE(s) WOLF 05/08/03 (H) READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS 05/08/03 (H) FSH, RES 05/16/03 (H) FSH AT 7:30 AM CAPITOL 124 05/16/03 (H) Heard & Held 05/16/03 (H) MINUTE(FSH) 03/22/04 (H) FSH AT 9:00 AM CAPITOL 124 03/22/04 (H) Moved CSHB 309(FSH) Out of Committee 03/22/04 (H) MINUTE(FSH) 03/24/04 (H) FSH RPT CS(FSH) NT 3DP 2NR 03/24/04 (H) DP: GARA, WILSON, SEATON; NR: OGG, 03/24/04 (H) GUTTENBERG 03/31/04 (H) RES AT 1:00 PM CAPITOL 124 03/31/04 (H) Heard & Held 03/31/04 (H) MINUTE(RES) 04/01/04 (H) JUD REFERRAL ADDED AFTER RES 04/05/04 (H) RES AT 1:00 PM CAPITOL 124 04/05/04 (H) Heard & Held 04/05/04 (H) MINUTE(RES) 04/07/04 (H) RES AT 1:00 PM CAPITOL 124 04/07/04 (H) Moved CSHB 309(RES) Out of Committee 04/07/04 (H) MINUTE(RES) 04/08/04 (H) RES RPT CS(RES) NT 1DP 3NR 5AM 04/08/04 (H) DP: WOLF; NR: LYNN, GUTTENBERG, 04/08/04 (H) DAHLSTROM; AM: HEINZE, STEPOVICH, 04/08/04 (H) GATTO, KERTTULA, MASEK 04/16/04 (H) JUD AT 1:00 PM CAPITOL 120 04/16/04 (H) Heard & Held Assigned to Subcmte 04/16/04 (H) MINUTE(JUD) 04/21/04 (H) JUD AT 1:00 PM CAPITOL 120 04/21/04 (H) Moved CSHB 309(JUD) Out of Committee 04/21/04 (H) MINUTE(JUD) 04/22/04 (H) JUD RPT CS(JUD) NT 4DP 1NR 1AM 04/22/04 (H) DP: SAMUELS, GARA, OGG, MCGUIRE; 04/22/04 (H) NR: GRUENBERG; AM: HOLM 04/27/04 (H) TRANSMITTED TO (S) 04/27/04 (H) VERSION: CSHB 309(JUD) AM 04/28/04 (S) READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS 04/28/04 (S) STA, RES 05/01/04 (S) STA AT 0:00 AM BELTZ 211 BILL: HB 405 SHORT TITLE: SCHOOL PERFORMANCE DESIGNATION/REPORT SPONSOR(s): REPRESENTATIVE(s) GATTO

01/28/04 (H) READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS

01/28/04 (H) EDU, HES 02/17/04 (H) EDU AT 11:00 AM CAPITOL 124 02/17/04 (H) <Bill Hearing Postponed> 03/02/04 (H) EDU AT 11:00 AM CAPITOL 124 03/02/04 (H) Heard & Held 03/02/04 (H) MINUTE(EDU) 03/09/04 (H) EDU AT 11:00 AM CAPITOL 124 03/09/04 (H) Moved CSHB 405(EDU) Out of Committee 03/09/04 (H) MINUTE(EDU) 03/18/04 (H) EDU RPT CS(EDU) 5DP 1NR 03/18/04 (H) DP: SEATON, WILSON, OGG, GARA, GATTO; 03/18/04 (H) NR: WOLF 03/23/04 (H) HES AT 3:00 PM CAPITOL 106 03/23/04 (H) Moved CSHB 405(EDU) Out of Committee 03/23/04 (H) MINUTE(HES) 03/24/04 (H) HES RPT CS(EDU) 6DP 03/24/04 (H) DP: KAPSNER, GATTO, CISSNA, SEATON, 03/24/04 (H) WOLF, WILSON 04/07/04 (H) TRANSMITTED TO (S) 04/07/04 (H) VERSION: CSHB 405(EDU) 04/08/04 (S) READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS 04/08/04 (S) STA, HES 04/27/04 (S) STA AT 3:30 PM BELTZ 211 04/27/04 (S) Scheduled But Not Heard 04/29/04 (S) STA AT 3:30 PM BELTZ 211 04/29/04 (S) Heard & Held 04/29/04 (S) MINUTE(STA) 05/01/04 (S) STA AT 0:00 AM BELTZ 211 BILL: HB 351 SHORT TITLE: CARBON MONOXIDE DETECTION DEVICES SPONSOR(s): REPRESENTATIVE(s) GATTO, GRUENBERG

01/12/04 (H) PREFILE RELEASED (1/2/04)

01/12/04 (H) READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS

01/12/04 (H) L&C, STA

01/21/04 (H) L&C AT 3:15 PM CAPITOL 17

01/21/04 (H) Heard & Held

01/21/04 (H) MINUTE(L&C)

01/23/04 (H) L&C AT 3:15 PM CAPITOL 17

01/23/04 (H) Moved CSHB 351(L&C) Out of Committee

01/23/04 (H) MINUTE(L&C)

01/26/04 (H) L&C RPT CS(L&C) 5DP

01/26/04 (H) DP: CRAWFORD, LYNN, GATTO, GUTTENBERG,

01/26/04 (H) ANDERSON 02/19/04 (H) STA AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 102 02/19/04 (H) Scheduled But Not Heard 02/26/04 (H) STA AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 102 02/26/04 (H) Moved CSHB 351(STA) Out of Committee 02/26/04 (H) MINUTE(STA) 03/01/04 (H) STA RPT CS(STA) 3DP 1DNP 3NR 03/01/04 (H) DP: GRUENBERG, SEATON, LYNN; 03/01/04 (H) DNP: COGHILL; NR: HOLM, BERKOWITZ, 03/01/04 (H) WEYHRAUCH 03/01/04 (H) JUD REFERRAL ADDED AFTER STA 03/19/04 (H) JUD AT 1:00 PM CAPITOL 120 03/19/04 (H) Moved CSHB 351(JUD) Out of Committee 03/19/04 (H) MINUTE(JUD) 03/22/04 (H) JUD RPT CS(JUD) 4DP 03/22/04 (H) DP: GARA, SAMUELS, GRUENBERG, MCGUIRE 03/31/04 (H) TRANSMITTED TO (S) 03/31/04 (H) VERSION: CSHB 351(JUD) 04/01/04 (S) READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS 04/01/04 (S) L&C, STA 04/22/04 (S) L&C AT 1:30 PM BELTZ 211 04/22/04 (S) TRADE PRACTICES: FREE TRIAL/OPT-OUT PLANS 04/27/04 (S) L&C AT 1:30 PM BELTZ 211 04/27/04 (S) Moved CSHB 351(JUD) Out of Committee 04/27/04 (S) MINUTE(L&C) 04/28/04 (S) L&C RPT 2DP 1NR 04/28/04 (S) DP: BUNDE, STEVENS G; NR: FRENCH 05/01/04 (S) STA AT 0:00 AM BELTZ 211 BILL: HB 373 SHORT TITLE: STATE TREASURY WARRANTS SPONSOR(s): STATE AFFAIRS

01/12/04 (H) READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS

01/12/04 (H) STA

01/20/04 (H) STA AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 102

01/20/04 (H) Moved Out of Committee

01/20/04 (H) MINUTE(STA)

01/21/04 (H) STA RPT 2DP 3NR

01/21/04 (H) DP: GRUENBERG, WEYHRAUCH; NR: SEATON,

01/21/04 (H) HOLM, LYNN 02/09/04 (H) TRANSMITTED TO (S) 02/09/04 (H) VERSION: HB 373 02/11/04 (S) READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS 02/11/04 (S) STA 04/22/04 (S) STA AT 3:30 PM BELTZ 211 04/22/04 (S) -- Meeting Canceled -- 04/29/04 (S) STA AT 3:30 PM BELTZ 211 04/29/04 (S) Scheduled But Not Heard 05/01/04 (S) STA AT 0:00 AM BELTZ 211 WITNESS REGISTER Richard Schmitz Staff to Senator John Cowdery Alaska State Capitol Juneau, AK 99801-1182 POSITION STATEMENT: Introduced CSSJR 34(WTR) on behalf of the Senate Rules Committee Terry Harvey Staff to Representative Bruce Weyhrauch Alaska State Capitol Juneau, AK 99801-1182 POSITION STATEMENT: Introduced HB 379 for the sponsor Guy Bell, Director Division or Administrative Services Department of Labor & Workforce Development PO Box 21149 Juneau, AK 99802-1149 POSITION STATEMENT: Responded to questions regarding HB 379 Andree McLeod No address provided POSITION STATEMENT: Immigrant opposing HB 379 Ben Mulligan Staff to Representative Bill Stoltze Alaska State Capitol Juneau, AK 99801-1182 POSITION STATEMENT: Introduced CSHB 366(FIN) for the sponsor Larry Meyers Department of Revenue PO Box 110400 Juneau, AK 99811-0400 POSITION STATEMENT: Announced that the Department of Revenue had no concerns with CSHB 366(FIN) David Lambert Fairbanks, AK 99701 POSITION STATEMENT: Stated support for CSHB366(FIN) Tom Nelson, Director Division of Employment Security Department of Labor & Workforce Development PO Box 21149 Juneau, AK 99802-1149 POSITION STATEMENT: Explained aspects of CSHB 490(JUD) Toby Steinberger Assistant Attorney General Civil Division Department of Law PO Box 110300 Juneau, AK 99811-0300 POSITION STATEMENT: Answered questions on CSHB 490(JUD) Neal DuPerron Staff to Representative Kelly Wolf Alaska State Capitol Juneau, AK 99801-1182 POSITION STATEMENT: Introduced CSHB 309(JUD) for sponsor Representative Kelly Wolf Alaska State Capitol Juneau, AK 99801-1182 POSITION STATEMENT: Sponsor HB 309 Cody Rice Staff to Representative Carl Gatto Alaska State Capitol Juneau, AK 99801-1182 POSITION STATEMENT: Introduced CSHB 351(JUD) for sponsor Representative Max Gruenberg Alaska State Capitol Juneau, AK 99801-1182 POSITION STATEMENT: Introduced HB 373 as a member of the House State Affairs Committee ACTION NARRATIVE TAPE 04-30, SIDE A (No recording on tape 04-30, side B) CHAIR GARY STEVENS called the Senate State Affairs Standing Committee meeting to order at 4:14 p.m. Present were Senators Cowdery, Stedman and Chair Gary Stevens. Senator Guess arrived shortly after the meeting was convened. CSSJR 34(WTR)-TAIWAN STATUS AND PRESIDENT CHAIR GARY STEVENS announced CSSJR 34(WTR) to be up for consideration. RICHARD SCHMITZ, staff to Senator Cowdery, explained that the resolution sends a message of goodwill to Republic of China (Taiwan) President Chen Shui-bian for his reelection. Because the Republic of China (Taiwan) is an important trading partner to Alaska, the resolution encourages the United States Congress to endorse their request to be granted Observer Status at the World Health Organization. There were no questions. SENATOR COWDERY motioned to report CSSJR 34(WTR) from committee with individual recommendations and attached zero fiscal notes. He asked for unanimous consent. There being no objection, it was so ordered. HB 379-OFFICE OF CITIZENSHIP ASSISTANCE CHAIR GARY STEVENS announced HB 379 to be up for consideration and noted that the committee heard similar legislation during the previous session. TERRY HARVEY, staff to Representative Bruce Weyhrauch, acknowledged that the Chair was correct. The legislation to establish the Office of Citizenship Assistance in the Department of Labor and Workforce Development was originally introduced during the 22nd Legislature. The difference between the two bills is that the fiscal note for the current legislation is reduced to $86,000 annually. Naturalized citizens and those pursuing citizenship could receive assistance in immigration and employment services. The office would be available to help individuals find affordable legal services, medical services, and educational opportunities. Information would also be available on discrimination, sexual harassment, and unsafe working conditions. Generally they've received broad statewide support for this office, he said. The only negative debate has centered on the argument that this is a duplication of services, but they disagree. SENATOR BERT STEDMAN asked why the bill didn't pass the previous session. MR. HARVEY said that in recent years it's been a challenge to create new positions in the state. Also, he said, it's likely that it would have passed last session if a bit more time and effort had been expended. SENATOR STEDMAN asked for a rough estimate of the number of immigrants that arrive in Alaska each year and where they come from. MR. HARVEY said he didn't have that number, but he could find out. They do feel that the office would assist several thousand people every year. People immigrate to Alaska from Mexico, Central and South America, Africa, Europe, the Philippines, and parts of Asia. SENATOR JOHN COWDERY asked where the office would be located. MR. HARVEY replied it would be located in Juneau, but they wouldn't be opposed to locating it in another central part of the state. SENATOR COWDERY opined it might be more properly located in Anchorage then asked whether there are similar federal offices. MR. HARVEY said there are individual offices that deal with the individual paperwork and documentation, but not a central position that serves as a navigational aid. SENATOR COWDERY asked whether anyone in Alaska helps people become citizens. MR. HARVEY informed him that the Catholic Community Services in Juneau and one main organization in Anchorage both do what they can in this area. SENATOR COWDERY remarked that both the Senate and the House have World Trade Committees and his office has fielded calls from immigrants that have experienced trouble with visa applications since 911. MR. HARVEY said that's why this proposed service is most important. The challenges are enormous for those trying to navigate through the system. SENATOR COWDERY suggested that a lot of the issues are federal rather than state and perhaps the Alaska delegation could be encouraged to act. CHAIR GARY STEVENS remarked that the fishing and processing industry in particular is heavily dependent on legal alien workers. Since 1970 he's found it rewarding to watch as immigrants move from introductory positions in the fishing industry to owning their own businesses. SENATOR GRETCHEN GUESS stated for the record that Anchorage has 92 languages represented in the school district, which gave her reason to echo Senator Cowdery's suggestion that Anchorage might be a better location for the office. There's a tremendous need for such assistance, she said, but her constituents wouldn't have access to such an office if it were located in Juneau. She asked whether they had discussed addressing safety issues as well because domestic violence and sexual assault is a big issue in the immigrant community. Women need to understand their rights and the state laws and to know that there is a place they can go if there is a need. MR. HARVEY said those safety issues are an important aspect of the assistance available. SENATOR GUESS said it would be stronger if domestic violence and sexual assault were specifically addressed because our laws are different than a number of other countries. SENATOR COWDERY asked what the qualifications and pay range would be for the job. MR. HARVEY replied Mr. Bell could answer those questions. GUY BELL, Director of the Division of Administrative Services with the Department of Labor and Workforce Development (DOLWD), explained that the envisioned position is a range 17, employment security analyst. That's a general classification within the employment security division and these employees are generally assigned to job centers. The position would require basic understanding of the job market, wage and hour laws, occupational safety and health issues, citizenship issues, strong communication skills, and probably some bilingual capability. What is a bit unusual is that the position will be assigned to the commissioner's office. SENATOR COWDERY asked if the office would be dealing with citizens or those trying to become citizens. MR. BELL replied it's the people that are working toward citizenship. CHAIR GARY STEVENS noted that an employment security analyst is a range 17 and earns $64,000 a year. He asked whether that includes retirement and health benefits. MR. BELL said it does. ANDREE McLEOD testified via teleconference saying she is an immigrant from Lebanon and she didn't support the bill because it's discriminatory based on national origin. There was no further testimony or questions. SENATOR STEDMAN motioned to report HB 379 from committee with individual recommendations and attached fiscal notes. There being no objection, it was so ordered. CSHB 366(FIN)-ANIMAL CLASSICS CHARITABLE GAMING CHAIR GARY STEVENS announced CSHB 366(FIN) to be up for consideration. BEN MULLIGAN, staff to Representative Bill Stoltze, advised members that the bill is a result of a legal opinion issued by the Department of Law stating that certain traditional games of chance are no longer legal. The legislation is narrow and would not expand charitable gaming in Alaska. Rather, it is designed to allow traditional games of chance including the Alaska State Fair Elks Rat Races and the Soldotna Progress Days VFW Chicken Shot Contest. Such games are traditional and important to the associated communities and support a number of non-profit organizations. SENATOR COWDERY remarked that these games have a long tradition in Alaska and he supports their continuation. CHAIR GARY STEVENS read lines 12 and 13 from page 2 and noted that games that weren't in existence before November 1, 2002 would be excluded. MR. MULLIGAN agreed. LARRY MEYERS stated, via teleconference, that the Department of Revenue had no concerns related to the bill. DAVID LAMBERT testified via teleconference from Fairbanks in support of the bill. CHAIR GARY STEVENS asked the pleasure of the committee. SENATOR COWDERY motioned to report CSHB 366(FIN) from committee with individual recommendations and attached zero fiscal notes. There being no objection, it was so ordered. CSHB 490(JUD) am-EMPLOYMENT SECURITY ACT AMENDMENTS CHAIR GARY STEVENS announced CSHB 490(JUD) am to be up for consideration. TOM NELSON, Director Division of Employment Security, Department of Labor & Workforce Development, explained that the bill is largely housekeeping and clarifies existing statute. The changes provide Alaska language alignment with federal law and will bring the state into compliance with the unemployment insurance overpayment arrangements Alaska has with other states. SENATOR GRETCHEN GUESS asked for an explanation of Sections 10 and 11. MR. NELSON said: Section 10 aligns Alaska language with federal law by clarifying which health care professionals are excluded from the definition of employment. Only student nurses and medical interns are excluded and this clears up existing language. The intent is just to provide a little clarification to employers that may misinterpret current statute. Section 11 clarifies language that provides an exclusion from the definition of wages or payments or benefits provided by an employer for purposes of educational assistance to their employees. Federal law already provides this exclusion from their definition of wages. TOBY STEINBERGER from the Attorney General's Office testified via teleconference. Commenting on Sections 1-3 and Section 8 she said: Sections 1-3 of the bill will help federal, state and municipal prosecutors to investigate and prosecute criminal cases because it will help them locate where suspects or witnesses or victims or persons on parole or probation - where they work. As a matter of background, employers provide information for each employee quarterly to the Employment Security Division when they pay their employment security taxes. So the location of the employee is very current. Also the Employment Security Division also provides unemployment benefits and people provide their addresses then. Another thing it's important to know is the Employment Security Division is heavily federally funded. The U.S Department of Labor has required that employment security records be kept confidential, but it allows for a number of exceptions. And accordingly, our Alaska Statute 23.20.110 has allowed for exceptions, but none of these exceptions allow for the releasing of information of criminal prosecutions other than in prosecuting cases against claimants who have fraudulently received payments or unemployment compensation benefits. This amendment would allow the Criminal Division as well as the U.S. Attorney's Office and the federal prosecutors to find suspects and witnesses and victims since this information is so up to date. The U.S. Department of Labor has approved this provision and ... allowed the release of employment security information for the purposes of criminal investigations and prosecutions. These other states include: Washington, Iowa, Arkansas, Georgia, Utah and Oklahoma. CHAIR GARY STEVENS asked what is included in employment security records. MS STEINBERGER said that would include the employee's name, Social Security record and payroll information. She continued: Section 8 would amend an existing statute, AS 23.120.497. The Employment Security Division provides unemployment benefits to persons and if they get denied, they can have a hearing. Currently the statute, AS 23.120.497, provides that unemployment compensation decisions are not admissible and the subsequent action or proceedings are not admissible in another form. For example, in a court case or in an administrative proceeding, if for example, an employee has brought a lawsuit against their employer for wrongful termination. The current statute says that they're not admissible in a subsequent action or proceeding or in another form. What this amendment will do is clarify that this also includes arbitration proceedings. There were no further questions or comments. CHAIR GARY STEVENS asked for the pleasure of the committee. SENATOR COWDERY motioned to report CSHB 490JUD) am from committee with individual recommendations and accompanying zero fiscal notes. He asked for unanimous consent. There being no objection, it was so ordered. CSHB 309(JUD) am-CRIMES: NONINDIGENOUS FISH ; SENTENCING CHAIR GARY STEVENS announced CSHB 309(JUD) am to be up for consideration. NEIL DuPERRON, staff to Representative Kelly Wolf, announced: "A person may not knowingly release, or transport, possess, import or export for the purpose of release into the waters of the state, live nonindigenous fish or live fertilized eggs of nonindigenous fish, unless permitted by AS 16.05 - 16.40." CHAIR GARY STEVENS asked him to explain the problem. REPRESENTATIVE KELLY WOLF joined the meeting and informed members that throughout south-central Alaska there's a problem with nonindigenous fish that have been introduced into streams and lakes through a process he called bucket biology. The introduced species tend to be predatory and endanger the indigenous game fish populations. Specifically, he said, Northern Pike are prolific and are capable of eating between 40 and 50 juvenile salmon a day. The Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADF&G) has made an effort to exterminate the nonindigenous game fish, but it's expensive and the procedures are detrimental to indigenous species as well. SENATOR BERT STEDMAN asked if it was correct that if this bill were to pass then the only way to restock a lake with trout would be to obtain permission from ADF&G and they could issue a permit for whatever type of fish they thought was reasonable. MR. DuPERRON said that's correct as far as he knows. SENATOR JOHN COWDERY asked what fish typically feed on. MR. DuPERRON replied, "Other little fish." SENATOR COWDERY said that's what he thought. SENATOR GRETCHEN GUESS motioned to report CSHB 309(JUD) am from committee with individual recommendations and the attached fiscal notes. There being no objection, it was so ordered. CSHB 405(EDU)-SCHOOL PERFORMANCE DESIGNATION/REPORT CHAIR GARY STEVENS announced CSHB 405(EDU) to be the next order of business. He noted that at the previous meeting he asked Senator Guess to meet with the sponsor to address her concerns with the bill. SENATOR GRETCHEN GUESS said that's correct, but that the Department of Education representative wasn't available until Monday. However, because she was a member of the next committee of referral she was willing for the bill to move. That would give her time to meet and work with the sponsor and the department and then address any issues in the Health Education and Social Services Committee. CHAIR GARY STEVENS asked for a motion. SENATOR COWDERY motioned to report CSHB 405(EDU) and attached fiscal notes from committee with individual recommendations. There being no objection, it was so ordered. CSHB 351(JUD)-CARBON MONOXIDE DETECTION DEVICES CHAIR GARY STEVENS announced CSHB 351(JUD) to be the next order of business. CODY RICE, staff to Representative Carl Gatto, described the bill as the joint effort of Representatives Max Gruenberg and Carl Gatto to address the issue of carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning in Alaska. HB 351 adds CO detection devices to the smoke detector installation and maintenance requirement in state law. SENATOR COWDERY questioned, whether the devices would be hard wired or battery powered and if battery replacement would be monitored. MR. RICE understood that the devices could be either battery or hard wired and the bill states that they will be installed and maintained according to the manufacturer's recommendations, which includes battery replacement. SENATOR GUESS motioned to report CSHB 351(JUD) and attached fiscal notes from committee with individual recommendations. There being no objection, it was so ordered. HB 373-STATE TREASURY WARRANTS CHAIR GARY STEVENS announced HB 373 to be the final order of business. He then called a brief at ease from 5:00 to 5:05 p.m. TAPE 04-31, SIDE A 5:05 p.m. REPRESENTATIVE MAX GRUENBERG, as a member of the House State Affairs Committee, explained that HB 373 cures a long-standing problem between commercial banks and the State of Alaska relating to a policy the State had of dishonoring their own warrants without any notification. The issue was litigated and the Alaska Supreme Court held that state treasure warrants were negotiable instruments under the Uniform Commercial Code and were therefore subject to the "holder in due course" defense. Although the State amended its business practices to comply with the ruling, the statutes have never been amended. CHAIR GARY STEVENS asked him to define the term negotiable instrument. REPRESENTATIVE GRUENBERG said negotiable instrument means that it's a piece of paper that says, "Pay somebody some thing." According to the Uniform Commercial Code, the instrument must be honored unless the drawer has gone through the specific and formal process indicating that the instrument should be dishonored. This protects the banking community and it protects commerce, he said. There were no questions. SENATOR GRETCHEN GUESS motioned to report HB 373 and attached fiscal notes from committee with individual recommendations. There being no objection, it was so ordered. CHAIR GARY STEVENS adjourned the meeting at 5:10 p.m.

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