Legislature(1993 - 1994)

03/09/1993 01:00 PM CRA

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
  HB 166:  ENHANCED 911 SYSTEMS                                                
  Number 020                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE CON BUNDE, PRIME SPONSOR OF HB 166,                           
  testified, "In my district, the municipality of Anchorage                    
  was introducing this enhanced 911 service which basically is                 
  the emergency number with whistles and bells attached so                     
  that it allows a quicker response of the appropriate                         
  emergency service, whichever you might require.  ...The                      
  problem was that this wasn't going to be available to all                    
  areas of the municipality, my district particularly, and                     
  even more startling to me is that the 911 number, as far as                  
  police emergency, would be withdrawn."                                       
  REPRESENTATIVE BUNDE continued, "Really all it (HB 166) does                 
  is requires a municipality provide this enhanced 911 service                 
  to all people within its boundaries and allows the                           
  municipality to collect a fee for this service because the                   
  enhancement does cost more than the other.  The existing 911                 
  service is quite an expensive service...   In my district                    
  alone, for one year, it was nearly $50,000.  So it is                        
  currently not free.  The new system would allow the                          
  subscriber to pay for this service... Fifty cents a month in                 
  some municipalities, and the smaller ones, 75 cents a                        
  Number 104                                                                   
  teleconference asked if the fees could be used for                           
  dispatcher wages and if the surcharge would be listed                        
  separately on telephone bills.                                               
  REPRESENTATIVE BUNDE said, "It is not my intent that it                      
  would be used for dispatcher wages...   It is my belief it                   
  would be shown as a separate surcharge on the bill, but I'd                  
  have to defer that to someone who knows municipalities and                   
  utilities better than I..."                                                  
  MS. BENSON asked, "Delta (Junction) presently is installing                  
  the 911 enhanced system, so will this surcharge be available                 
  to us as well?"                                                              
  Number 139                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE BUNDE said, "The surcharge will be available                  
  wherever the enhanced 911 is installed, yes."  Regarding                     
  dispatcher wages, he added, "That was not the way I read the                 
  bill (HB 166), however, I've been informed that others might                 
  look at that differently."                                                   
  MS. BENSON asked if ambulance runs were "private records"                    
  and "who is privy to those 911 calls".                                       
  REPRESENTATIVE BUNDE replied, "They're certainly not                         
  available to the general public, but for the people that                     
  it's part of their duty or function, and the way I read                      
  medical records, that doesn't include the ambulance runs,                    
  Number 186                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE CYNTHIA TOOHEY MOVED that the committee adopt                 
  the working draft as a committee substitute (CS) for HB 166.                 
  Without objections, CSHB 166 was ADOPTED.                                    
  REPRESENTATIVE BUNDE addressed the CS, "The original HB 166                  
  was under Title 42, which is Public Utilities, instead of                    
  Title 29, Municipal Government, and certainly not a function                 
  of APUC (Alaska Public Utilities Commission) to participate                  
  in the collection of fees for 911.  The CS for HB 166 is to                  
  place the legislation in the statutes where it more rightly                  
  Number 198                                                                   
  KEVIN O'LEARY, CHIEF OF POLICE, ANCHORAGE, testified via                     
  teleconference in support of HB 166 saying, "I think it's a                  
  welcome addition to the state of Alaska and will allow                       
  communities to establish enhanced 911 system that they are                   
  able to pay for."                                                            
  Number 212                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE JOHN DAVIES asked, "In the Anchorage                          
  municipality, have you tried to establish enhanced 911                       
  systems and can't do it for one statutory reason or                          
  MR. O'LEARY said, "We have an enhanced system now that is                    
  somewhat old and is in need of being replaced."  He also                     
  indicated that HB 166 provides for "collection of necessary                  
  revenues to support the acquisition of the equipment" and                    
  "secondarily, the portion of the legislation that refers to                  
  'community' is also something that we cannot provide for                     
  ourselves on a local level, it has to be enacted on a state                  
  Number 230                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE DAVIES asked if the amount of surcharge (50                   
  cents) "would be adequate for Anchorage."                                    
  MR. O'LEARY said, "No, it will not be adequate, that                         
  surcharge will approximately raise 300,000 dollars in                        
  revenue.  The current cost for operations of our dispatch                    
  center is a little over four million dollars of which 1.9                    
  million dollars is applied strictly to 911 operations."                      
  Number 244                                                                   
  KENAI PENINSULA BOROUGH, read the Mayor's position paper                     
  submitted to the committee members which supports CSHB 166.                  
  (A copy of this position paper may be found in the House                     
  Community and Regional Affairs Committee Room, Capitol Room                  
  110, and after the adjournment of the second session of the                  
  18th Alaska State Legislature, in the Legislative Reference                  
  REPRESENTATIVE DAVIES asked, "Specifically, what does this                   
  bill (HB 166) allow you to do that they can't do know, how                   
  does this help them?"                                                        
  MS. GOLDEN replied, "The way that I understand it, it allows                 
  us to charge for the 911 services..."                                        
  Number 298                                                                   
  DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND SOCIAL SERVICES, testified, "We                     
  support the bill (HB 166).  ...My only comment is, as far as                 
  emergency medical services, AS 29.35.020 allows for                          
  extraterritorial jurisdiction for certain services,                          
  including emergency medical services, and in the event that                  
  a municipality may choose, and I believe they do this by                     
  ordinance to provide service in a surrounding area, I would                  
  suggest the wording be flexible enough to allow that for the                 
  enhanced 911 service area."                                                  
  REPRESENTATIVE BUNDE asked, "Do you envision that there                      
  would be parts of the borough where you would serve from one                 
  borough to the next?"                                                        
  MR. JOHNSON said, "I'm not sure how many municipalities                      
  would want to include this in their enhanced 911 system, but                 
  I do believe they ought to have that option.  The Delta                      
  Junction ambulance, for example, picks up patients up and                    
  down the highway, and whether or not they and their local                    
  telephone exchange would want to accommodate enhanced 911                    
  further out would be up to them..."                                          
  REPRESENTATIVE BUNDE said, "I was just trying to think if                    
  there would be a municipality on a boundary where they might                 
  want to extend their service into another borough..."                        
  Number 342                                                                   
  CHAIRMAN OLBERG said, "In Delta Junction, for example, the                   
  City of Delta Junction operates the service but it covers a                  
  wide area within the unorganized borough, in fact."                          
  REPRESENTATIVE BUNDE confirmed, "It would still then be                      
  available to all people in that borough or unorganized                       
  CHAIRMAN OLBERG added, "The unorganized borough is a                         
  REPRESENTATIVE DAVIES said, "I would support this                            
  suggestion, I think the same situation is true for...                        
  Fairbanks.  ...I think there are situations here where this                  
  might preclude that so I would support some kind of friendly                 
  REPRESENTATIVE BUNDE replied, "I'm not opposed to that                       
  Number 375                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE BUNDE said, "... I don't have any hesitation                  
  of spreading it out where a city, municipality or borough                    
  could then provide service as was suggested, as otherwise                    
  under [AS] 29.35.020..."                                                     
  CHAIRMAN OLBERG suggested possible amendments be produced.                   
  Number 389                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE DAVIES asked, "Where it says 'the area may be                 
  all of a city', does that mean that the area may not be part                 
  of a city?  Is that the intent of this language?"                            
  REPRESENTATIVE BUNDE said, "That is very much the intent of                  
  this statute because my particular district was being left                   
  out and access to 911 should be expanded and not curtailed."                 
  Number 400                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE JERRY MACKIE offered, "Instead of an                          
  amendment...  normally, you would explain to Legislative                     
  Legal what you're trying to accomplish and they'll come up                   
  with the language.  I think it would be important to make                    
  sure that it was done by legal..."                                           
  CHAIRMAN OLBERG asked Representative Bunde how he wanted to                  
  pursue the amendments.                                                       
  REPRESENTATIVE BUNDE said, "I guess I would like to possibly                 
  move this bill (HB 166) along with your intent to modify                     
  that particular phrase to (include) 'or otherwise provided                   
  for in AS 29.35.020'."                                                       
  CHAIRMAN OLBERG suggested a "conceptual amendment" that                      
  accompanies the bill (HB 166) so the bill "can begin its                     
  journey to its next committee of referral and save a little                  
  time that way."                                                              
  Number 425                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE DAVIES suggested some consideration be given                  
  to cellular phone "possibilities."                                           
  REPRESENTATIVE BUNDE asked for specific suggestions                          
  regarding cellular phones for CSHB 166.                                      
  REPRESENTATIVE DAVIES volunteered to work "on a very small                   
  subcommittee to solve this problem."                                         
  CHAIRMAN OLBERG said, "I love volunteers," and added, "We'll                 
  hear it again Thursday..."                                                   
  Number 460                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE DAVIES reiterated, "Why is it necessary to do                 
  this?  Why can't the municipalities do this on their own as                  
  it is?  And the second one:  Why are we limiting the                         
  population of the municipality of Anchorage to raise                         
  revenues to only 50 cents when everybody else gets the                       
  opportunity for the 75 (cents)."                                             
  REPRESENTATIVE BUNDE said, "I worked with people in the                      
  municipality and they felt this was a fair way to approach                   
  it.  There is a responsibility, and I may be putting words                   
  in their mouths, this is my perception, of municipalities                    
  providing services and there's also then an opportunity for                  
  people to pay in some measure for their services.  As you                    
  might imagine you have lots of fires, your share of the fire                 
  department budget doesn't go up even though you're a greater                 
  demand of the service than someone who has no fires.  And to                 
  your first question, municipalities did not feel they were                   
  able to institute this service, particularly from boundary                   
  to boundary, without this additional legislation."                           
  CHAIRMAN OLBERG suggested the details be sorted out in a                     
  subcommittee comprised of Representatives Bunde and Davies.                  
  Number 490                                                                   
  Chairman Olberg called an at ease at 1:32 p.m.                               

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