Legislature(1995 - 1996)

1995-02-27 House Journal

Full Journal pdf

1995-02-27                     House Journal                      Page 0499
HB 206                                                                       
HOUSE BILL NO. 206 by the House Rules Committee by request of                  
the Governor, entitled:                                                        
"An Act relating to the revocation of a minor's license to drive,             
privilege to drive, or privilege to obtain a driver's license for an           
offense involving a controlled substance, possession or                        
consumption of alcohol, or the illegal use or possession of a                  
firearm; and requiring the expulsion or suspension of students                 
possessing deadly weapons."                                                    
was read the first time and referred to the Health, Education & Social         
Services, Transportation and Judiciary Committees.                             
The following fiscal notes apply:                                              
Zero fiscal notes (2), Dept. of Administration, 2/27/95                        
Zero fiscal note, Dept. of Education, 2/27/95                                  
Zero fiscal notes (3), Dept. of Health & Social Services, 2/27/95              
Zero fiscal note, Dept. of Law, 2/27/95                                        
Zero fiscal note, Dept. of Public Safety, 2/27/95                              

1995-02-27                     House Journal                      Page 0500
HB 206                                                                       
The Governor's transmittal letter, dated February 27, 1995, appears            
"Dear Speaker Phillips:                                                        
Under the authority of art. III, sec. 18, of the Alaska Constitution, I am     
transmitting a bill designed to deter juveniles from illegally using or        
possessing guns.                                                               
Our juvenile justice system is trying to deal with the state's ever-           
growing number of delinquents.  The system, however, is already                
operating at capacity.  There are juveniles who know that penalties for        
minor offenses are rarely imposed.  We need to bring home to                   
juveniles in as many ways as possible the message, not only that               
"crime doesn't pay," but that there are consequences for committing            
crimes.  This bill adds two consequences to our existing laws against          
possessing guns on school grounds:  being expelled from school for at          
least one year, and losing the privilege to drive.                             
The possession and use of firearms by juveniles has increased                  
dramatically in recent years.  In 1993, 76 juveniles in Anchorage were         
charged with Misconduct Involving Weapons.  These cases did not              
include violent or drug-related offenses in which a juvenile used or           
possessed a handgun; these cases involved specific weapons offenses.           
In 1994, there were over 100 cases, and the numbers are still going up.        
During the 1992-93 school year, 12 students were caught with guns at           
Anchorage schools.  In the 1993-94 school year, that number rose to            
27.  We need to stop this trend now.                                         
The first key component of the bill puts at risk something almost all          
juveniles care about, the privilege to drive, as a penalty for illegally       
using or possessing a gun.  This provision is contained in section 2,          
and amends the current "use it, lose it" law.  For a first offense, the        
revocation is 90 days; after that it is for a period of up to one year.        
The second key component of the bill is set out in sec. 1.  It requires        
school districts to expel for at least one year any student who brings         

1995-02-27                     House Journal                      Page 0501
HB 206                                                                       
a firearm1 to school.  This provision is mandated by the federal Gun           
Free Schools Act, which requires a state that receives federal money           
under the Elementary and Secondary Education Act to have a                     
provision of this nature in effect by October 20, 1995.  In FY 95, the         
State of Alaska received over $90 million, most of which went directly         
to local school districts, under the Elementary and Secondary                  
Education Act.  This bill will allow Alaska to continue receiving these        
funds in future years.                                                         
I urge your favorable action on this bill.                                     
			Tony Knowles                                                                
1Under 18 U.S.C. 921, "firearm" does not include a rifle that the             
owner intends to use solely for sporting, recreational, or cultural