Legislature(1995 - 1996)

1996-02-09 House Journal

Full Journal pdf

1996-02-09                     House Journal                      Page 2693
HB 491                                                                       
HOUSE BILL NO. 491 by the House Rules Committee by request of                  
the Governor, entitled:                                                        
An Act relating to filing, recording, and indexing of documents               
with or by the Department of Natural Resources; repealing certain              
filing requirements concerning property involving nonresident                  
aliens; and providing for an effective date.                                   

1996-02-09                     House Journal                      Page 2694
HB 491                                                                       
was read the first time and referred to the Resources, Judiciary and           
Finance Committees.                                                            
The following fiscal note applies:                                             
Indeterminate fiscal note, Dept. of Natural Resources, 2/9/96                  
The Governor's transmittal letter, dated February 9, 1996, appears             
Dear Speaker Phillips:                                                         
Under the authority of art. III, sec 18, of the Alaska Constitution, I am      
transmitting a bill relating to changes in state recording laws                
administered by the Department of Natural Resources.  This bill                
clarifies the criteria for the recording of documents by the department        
and provides changes to improve the efficiency of the recording                
function, a service that is provided to all Alaskans through recording         
offices located in fourteen rural and urban locations across the state.        
Comprehensive changes were made to recording laws in 1988. A                   
number of provisions were consolidated and a classification system             
identifying documents eligible for recording was enacted.  In practice,        
this system has required significant staffing time to determine whether        
a document offered for recording falls within one or more of the               
specific statutory classifications.  Further, because of the ambiguities       
in the current recording statutes, recording staff have frequently had to      
step beyond mere ministerial functions when processing documents in            
an effort to apply the current cumbersome statutory language.                  
The changes proposed in this bill permit the recording of any                  
document that meets the minimum requirements necessary. Additional             
specific acceptance requirements apply only to a limited number of             
documents, such as conveyances and subdivision plats.  Some minor              
changes regarding filings under the Uniform Commercial Code (UCC)              
are also addressed.  The bill adds a provision requiring the                   
maintenance of a central office within the Department of Natural               
Resources for the filing of secured transaction documents under the            

1996-02-09                     House Journal                      Page 2695
HB 491                                                                       
The bill also repeals several obsolete or redundant provisions including       
one concerning duplicate copies of documents relating to mining                
properties; a provision regarding indexing of common interest                  
community documents; and a provision requiring reports to the                  
Department of Commerce and Economic Development concerning                     
conveyances to nonresident aliens.                                             
By removing such ambiguities and conflicts within the current                  
recording statutes, this bill will streamline the workflow of the              
recording process and reduce the amount of time currently spent                
reviewing documents offered for recording.  This will also reduce the          
numbers of documents that are rejected.  These proposed efficiencies           
will enable the recording system to direct necessary resources to the          
archival projects now underway to improve the permanent public                 
records for the benefit of future generations of Alaskans.                     
I urge your passage of this bill.                                              
						Tony Knowles