Legislature(1993 - 1994)
04/01/1993 01:00 PM CRA
* first hearing in first committee of referral
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
HOUSE COMMUNITY AND REGIONAL AFFAIRS STANDING COMMITTEE April 1, 1993 1:00 p.m. MEMBERS PRESENT Representative Harley Olberg, Chairman Representative Jerry Sanders, Vice-Chairman Representative Con Bunde Representative John Davies Representative Cynthia Toohey Representative Ed Willis Representative Bill Williams MEMBERS ABSENT none COMMITTEE CALENDAR *HB 209: "An Act relating to community health aide grants." NOT HEARD HB 211: "An Act relating to the municipal tax exemption for inventories intended for export." PASSED FROM COMMITTEE WITH A DO PASS RECOMMENDATION *HB 242: "An Act relating to dangerous dogs and to municipal classifications and limitations based on the breed of a dog." PASSED FROM COMMITTEE WITH INDIVIDUAL RECOMMENDATIONS HB 70: "An Act relating to state impact aid for municipalities; and providing for an effective date." NOT HEARD (* first public hearing) WITNESS REGISTER Representative Con Bunde State Capitol, Room 112 Juneau, Alaska 99801-1182 Phone: 465-4843 POSITION STATEMENT: Prime Sponsor of HB 242 Jon Basler, Veterinarian South Central Veterinary Medical Association 3211 Shuttle Circle Anchorage, AK 99517 Phone: 274-5623 POSITION STATEMENT: Supported HB 242 Bonnie Stratton Alaska Dog Coalition 531 Bounty Drive Anchorage, AK 99515 Phone: 276-1592 POSITION STATEMENT: Supported HB 242 Debi Richmond Alaska Dog Coalition P.O. Box 211416 Anchorage, AK 99521 Phone: 786-1669 POSITION STATEMENT: Supported HB 242 Leslie Batchelder, President Kenai Kennel Club P.O. Box 116 Kasilof, AK 99610 Phone: 262-6405 POSITION STATEMENT: Supported HB 242 Laura Love, Certified Master Dog Trainer HCO1 Box 735 Kenai, AK 99611 Phone: 776-8565 POSITION STATEMENT: Supported HB 242 Susan Kohli Petersen, Chairperson Alaska Dog Coalition 2716 E. 46th Avenue Anchorage, Ak 99507 Phone: 562-6399 POSITION STATEMENT: Supported HB 242 Gaile Haynes Capital Kennel Club 3041 Glacierwood Drive Juneau, AK 99801 Phone: 465-5950 POSITION STATEMENT: Supported HB 242 Scott Hawkins, President Anchorage Economic Development Corporation 550 West 7th Ave., Suite 1130 Anchorage, AK 99501 Phone: 258-3700 POSITION STATEMENT: Supported HB 211 PREVIOUS ACTION BILL: HB 209 SHORT TITLE: COMMUNITY HEALTH AIDE GRANTS BILL VERSION: SPONSOR(S): HEALTH, EDUCATION AND SOCIAL SERVICES TITLE: "An Act relating to community health aide grants." JRN-DATE JRN-PG ACTION 03/10/93 590 (H) READ THE FIRST TIME/REFERRAL(S) 03/10/93 590 (H) CRA, STATE AFFAIRS, HES, FINANCE 04/01/93 (H) CRA AT 01:00 PM CAPITOL 124 BILL: HB 211 SHORT TITLE: MUNICIPAL INVENTORY TAX EXEMPTION:EXPORTS BILL VERSION: SPONSOR(S): REPRESENTATIVE(S) TOOHEY,Brown TITLE: "An Act relating to the municipal tax exemption for inventories intended for export." JRN-DATE JRN-PG ACTION 03/10/93 590 (H) READ THE FIRST TIME/REFERRAL(S) 03/10/93 590 (H) CRA, JUDICIARY 03/12/93 629 (H) COSPONSOR(S): BROWN 03/25/93 (H) CRA AT 01:00 PM CAPITOL 124 04/01/93 (H) CRA AT 01:00 PM CAPITOL 124 BILL: HB 242 SHORT TITLE: VICIOUS DOGS: NO CLASSIFICATIONS BY BREED BILL VERSION: SPONSOR(S): REPRESENTATIVE(S) BUNDE TITLE: "An Act relating to dangerous dogs and to municipal classifications and limitations based on the breed of a dog." JRN-DATE JRN-PG ACTION 03/19/93 709 (H) READ THE FIRST TIME/REFERRAL(S) 03/19/93 709 (H) CRA, JUDICIARY 04/01/93 (H) CRA AT 01:00 PM CAPITOL 124 BILL: HB 70 SHORT TITLE: STATE IMPACT AID FOR MUNICIPALITIES BILL VERSION: SPONSOR(S): REPRESENTATIVE(S) MACLEAN TITLE: "An Act relating to state impact aid for municipalities; and providing for an effective date." JRN-DATE JRN-PG ACTION 01/18/93 101 (H) READ THE FIRST TIME/REFERRAL(S) 01/18/93 101 (H) CRA, JUDICIARY, FINANCE 03/25/93 (H) CRA AT 01:00 PM CAPITOL 124 04/01/93 (H) CRA AT 01:00 PM CAPITOL 124 ACTION NARRATIVE TAPE 93-20, SIDE A Number 000 CHAIRMAN HARLEY OLBERG called the meeting to order at 2:43 p.m. He noted Representatives Toohey, Willis, Davies, Bunde and Sanders were present. Representative Williams arrived at 2:46 p.m. HB 242: VICIOUS DOGS: NO CLASSIFICATIONS BY BREED Number 020 REPRESENTATIVE CON BUNDE, PRIME SPONSOR OF HB 242, testified by reading his sponsor statement into the record. (Copies of this sponsor statement 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 Library.) Number 048 DR. JON BASLER, VETERINARIAN, SOUTH CENTRAL VETERINARY MEDICAL ASSOCIATION, testified in support of HB 242. (A copy of this testimony 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 Library.) BONNIE STRATTON, ALASKA DOG COALITION, testified via teleconference in support of HB 242 saying, "Alaskans have long embraced the rights of individuals. We believe HB 242 will promote nondiscriminatory laws that protect the rights of individual responsible dog owners while punishing irresponsible owners of vicious dogs. House Bill 242 will ensure Alaskan communities will have laws that focus on controlling all vicious dogs, rather than overly-narrow ordinances that would only deal with a specific breed. When HB 242 becomes a statute, it will not conflict with any currently existing laws in Alaska." MS. STRATTON continued, "Non-breed specific laws better serve the public because they control all dangerous dogs, not just those of a specific type. Breed specific laws have been found to be unconstitutionally vague in other states. They have also been an indication for court challenges and expensive litigation..." DEBI RICHMOND, ALASKA DOG COALITION, testified via teleconference in support of HB 242. She said, "Identifying dogs that have been deemed dangerous is very important for children in all neighborhoods and the public in general. Children at play go over fences, into yards, up to strange dogs without thinking. Having a visual alert in the form of a collar and signs on houses or fences may trigger a child to stop and avoid becoming a victim..." Number 184 LESLIE BATCHELDER, PRESIDENT, KENAI KENNEL CLUB, testified similarly via teleconference in support of HB 242. LAURA LOVE, CERTIFIED MASTER DOG TRAINER, testified from Kenai in support of HB 242 saying, "We really like the idea of having warning signs and collars which identify a dangerous dog..." Number 219 SUSAN KOHLI PETERSEN, CHAIRPERSON, ALASKA DOG COALITION, testified in favor of HB 242. She said, "This bill is not breed specific. It allows the identification of dog behavior problems, eliminates breed identification problems, encourages owner responsibility and will not conflict with any existing laws in any of Alaska's communities. We believe that any legislation dealing with dog behavior problems should be based on that dog's behavior, not based on the breed of the dog. A breed specific law will not cover all instances of dangerous or vicious dogs, as this bill does." MS. PETERSEN continued, "Laws and regulations which attempt to solve dog behavior problems based solely on branding a specific breed as vicious, have earned the police and animal control officers a difficult task of attempting to identify these breeds. Many dogs are impossible to identify with any degree of accuracy..." GAILE HAYNES, CAPITAL KENNEL CLUB, testified in support of HB 242 saying, "It (HB 242) gives full power to communities to protect themselves against individual dangerous dogs and their irresponsible owners without limiting the rights of proper and responsible owners to keep animals without unnecessary legislative interference..." REPRESENTATIVE BUNDE pointed out, "I have had more support on this bill than any issue that's come before me this session." He then demonstrated the "dangerous and vicious dog" collar and signage pertaining to HB 242. REPRESENTATIVE ED WILLIS asked, "How does this affect the Anchorage muni (municipality)? DR. BASLER said, "To my knowledge, at this point, it (HB 242) would not have any impact on the Municipality of Anchorage... The mayor's advisory commission on animal control, I believe, has written a letter in support of this bill." REPRESENTATIVE WILLIS asked, "Representative Bunde, have you had any reaction from the mayor on this specific legislation (HB 242) or the assembly?" Number 336 REPRESENTATIVE BUNDE said, "No, I have not, only through their counsel and advisors on dog (issues). I have a copy of the current Anchorage Dangerous and Vicious Dog Ordinance and it's not breed specific..." REPRESENTATIVE WILLIS said, "To your knowledge then, this would not in any way impede whatever ordinances they might want to consider." Number 347 REPRESENTATIVE BUNDE said, "They couldn't, under this statute, then institute breed specific. It would have to be similar to what Anchorage has done in that they are simply dangerous or vicious dogs and you wouldn't (need to) identify (the breed of dog)..." DR. BASLER added, "I would note there are nine states around the country which currently have prohibitions very similar to this already on the books... A second thing is, the National Animal Control Association, which is the trade group representing people in animal control, is on record as favoring nonbreed specific and opposing any breed specific..." Number 375 REPRESENTATIVE JOHN DAVIES said, "I appreciate the thrust of this bill (HB 242)...however, the concern...that was expressed on the other side of the issue is that there were certain breeds...where the dog may have the characteristic of having a particularly harmful bite. There are dog bites and then there are dog bites. Some dogs...are reputed to, when they bite, do a lot more damage than other dogs." Number 390 DR. BASLER said, "I certainly have read the jaw per square inch pressure pit bull studies and things along those lines. I guess my own personal feeling as a veterinarian is that, basically, it relates to the size of the dog. Anything that's big can potentially cause as much damage as a pit bull. Any other breed of dog...is going to create the same type of rip and tearing. It's not inherent in any one breed." REPRESENTATIVE BILL WILLIAMS asked, "Are you telling the municipality what to do and what not to do?" REPRESENTATIVE BUNDE said, "That is correct, that they cannot establish a breed specific..." Number 409 REPRESENTATIVE WILLIAMS said, "I have a difficult time with that, Mr. Chairman, as far as telling a municipality what they can do and what they can't do on an issue like this... I'm already having problems with some of the rules and regulations under Title 29..." REPRESENTATIVE BUNDE said, "It's an attempt to have consistency throughout the state... It's allowing you to create the laws that you want. You just can't say, 'This one kind of breed of dog is going to be classified vicious automatically just because it's that breed...'" REPRESENTATIVE WILLIAMS said, "There are safeguards already apparently in Title 29, or Anchorage would have an ordinance in their books." REPRESENTATIVE BUNDE said, "No that isn't the case. They passed one (but) the mayor vetoed it." Number 436 REPRESENTATIVE WILLIAMS said, "That's what I mean..." CHAIRMAN OLBERG intervened, "It's obvious we're all not going to agree on this one, as is often the case..." REPRESENTATIVE BUNDE MOVED that HB 242 be PASSED out of committee with individual recommendations. REPRESENTATIVE DAVIES put forth another question. He asked, "If this (HB 242) were to pass, would we be able to pass a law that classified dogs by their physical characteristics?" REPRESENTATIVE BUNDE said, "My understanding, Mr. Chairman, is more by behavior. Just because a dog is large, doesn't mean it's a vicious dog." Number 460 REPRESENTATIVE DAVIES clarified, "The concern that has been expressed...is that certain dogs by their physical characteristics have the potential to be much more damaging than some smaller...and you may want to have laws applying to a whole range of dog characteristics that might exhibit the potential for damage." REPRESENTATIVE BUNDE said, "No...you can't condemn a dog until it has done some antisocial behavior. It's a question of constitutionality." REPRESENTATIVE DAVIES said, "We have leash laws. That sounds like a prior constraint." REPRESENTATIVE BUNDE said, "A leash law keeps the dog off other people's property." REPRESENTATIVE DAVIES said, "I don't see any difference." CHAIRMAN OLBERG referred to Representative Bunde's motion to move HB 242 out of committee with individual recommendations. REPRESENTATIVE DAVIES OBJECTED. A role call vote was taken. Representatives Willis, Williams, Davies, Bunde and Olberg voted YES. Representatives Toohey and Sanders voted NO. THE MOTION CARRIED HB 211: MUNICIPAL INVENTORY TAX EXEMPTIONS: EXPORTS Number 494 REPRESENTATIVE CYNTHIA TOOHEY, PRIME SPONSOR OF HB 211, testified by reading her sponsor statement into the record. (Copies of this sponsor statement 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 Library.) Number 520 SCOTT HAWKINS, PRESIDENT, ANCHORAGE ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION, testified in support of HB 211 saying, "The Anchorage Economic Development Corporation has been marketing aggressively in recent years to attract warehousing distribution business to Anchorage to capitalize on the air cargo activity that came in in recent years. We are making some headway. We are getting reasonably close with some major entities in terms of working with them to establish international warehousing centers in Anchorage. Major manufacturers of high value products such as computer equipment, semiconductors, that type of thing." MR. HAWKINS continued, "This industry has tremendous long term potential for Anchorage. Now that we have the FedEx (Federal Express) and UPS (United Parcel Service) hubs, we believe this type of thing would be the next job-creating type of activity associated with our geographic location and logistics potential. But I would point out that this bill (HB 211) is not limited to air cargo, it is not limited to high value manufacturing goods. It is not limited to Anchorage. It is also a bill that would help communities with other goals, such as coastal communities wanting to build cold storage." MR. HAWKINS added, "For those communities that have seafood storage already, as it sits right now there's actually a reverse incentive in the law because current law does not allow inventories held for export to be treated any differently than any other type of inventory. This encourages businesses such as seafood companies to get their inventory out of the state early, before January first, before the tax men come around and count it. So it actually exacerbates the already existing seasonality of some industries..." Number 551 Chairman Olberg asked, "Only the municipality can charge an inventory tax at this point in time, is that correct?" MR. HAWKINS replied, "My understanding is that only the municipalities do at this point in time..." CHAIRMAN OLBERG said, "That tax is charged according to the inventory as it exists on a particular day basically, isn't it?" MR. HAWKINS replied in the affirmative. CHAIRMAN OLBERG commented, "The Municipality of Anchorage is in favor of this proposal based on the letter we have received." REPRESENTATIVE DAVIES asked about some original language in AS 29.45 regarding school districts. REPRESENTATIVE TOOHEY explained, "I understand last year when the bill went through that, that specific language was put in there because there was a person of persuasion that felt that the school districts should not be exempt." MR. HAWKINS added, "A bill went through actually in 1989. It hit the floor of the Senate in the last day or two of session. Somebody had a feeling in their heart that school districts should always be able to levy taxes on any inventory whether it is held for export or otherwise and it was pulled off the floor and forcibly amended and we had to live with it until now. That is what we are going back and trying to clean up." Number 577 REPRESENTATIVE DAVIES asked, "Am I correct, a municipality that was a school district, if we passed this, would have the option to either tax or to totally or partially exempt exports from taxes?" REPRESENTATIVE TOOHEY concurred. REPRESENTATIVE WILLIS asked why the "repeal by the voters" language currently in statute "shouldn't be continued." MR. HAWKINS said, "I believe it was just viewed as superfluous...the feeling was that any ordinance is subject to repeal by the voters and the language really was redundant and unnecessary." Number 595 REPRESENTATIVE SANDERS MOVED to PASS HB 211 out of committee with individual recommendations. REPRESENTATIVE BUNDE OBJECTED then WITHDREW his OBJECTION, and THE MOTION CARRIED. ADJOURNMENT CHAIRMAN OLBERG adjourned the meeting at 3:20.