Legislature(1993 - 1994)

04/13/1993 08:30 AM FIN

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
txt
  HOUSE BILL NO. 54                                                            
                                                                               
       "An  Act relating  to  eavesdropping, telephone  caller                 
       identification,  and  telephone directory  listings and                 
       solicitations."                                                         
                                                                               
  Representative   Brown   explained  that   telephone  caller                 
  identification is  a new  service  that will  be offered  in                 
  Alaska.  House  Bill 54 mandates that  there must be a  free                 
  opportunity for consumers that do not want to participate to                 
  block  their  line.   She  maintained that  the  new service                 
  raises  privacy  implications.    She  noted  that  unlisted                 
  numbers  would be diverged.  She noted that persons involved                 
  in domestic violence, police activities and physicians might                 
  need to have the caller identification blocked.                              
                                                                               
  Representative Brown noted  that telephone companies  desire                 
  that per  call blocking  be required.    She explained  that                 
  callers would  be required  to dial  a series  of additional                 
  numbers in order  to block the  caller identification.   She                 
  felt that this process would be burdensome.                                  
                                                                               
  Representative Brown emphasized  that harassing phone  calls                 
  would be  better addressed through  call trace.   Call trace                 
  would alert  the police  department when  a harassing  phone                 
  call is made.  She added that call reject, priority ring and                 
  call block could be used to prevent unwanted calls.                          
                                                                               
  Representative Brown felt the cost of  the service should be                 
  born by those  that want the service and not  consumers as a                 
  whole.                                                                       
                                                                               
  Representative Martin  asked who  would pay  for blocking  a                 
  number out.   Representative Brown answered that  the charge                 
  for blocking would be  covered out of the cost of those that                 
  prescribe for  the service.   She stressed that  knowing the                 
  phone number  of the  person calling  would not  necessarily                 
  indicate that the call will be harassing.                                    
                                                                               
  Representative Hanley felt that there should be a charge for                 
                                                                               
                                                                               
  individuals  that  have  opted into  the  service  and later                 
  decides to opt out of the service.                                           
                                                                               
  CINDY SMITH,  DIRECTOR, ALASKA NETWORK  ON DOMESTIC VIOLENCE                 
  AND SEXUAL ASSAULT referred to problems associated with call                 
  identification.  She  stressed that  Ms. Smith diverges  the                 
  location of shelters, counselors and sexual assault victims.                 
  It also prevents  contact by counselors and  volunteers from                 
  contacting  victims in their  homes.  It  also affects "safe                 
  homes".  She noted  that many states that did  not institute                 
  regulations   have   found   it   necessary   to   institute                 
  regulations.  She stated that the Alaska Network on Domestic                 
  Violence  and  Sexual  Assault  is  greatly  concerned  that                 
  blocking  be allowed  for  Ms. Smith.    She clarified,  for                 
  Representative Martin,  that shelters do not collect numbers                 
  of those that call the shelters.                                             
                                                                               
  MARCIA  MCKENZIE, PROGRAM  COORDINATOR, COUNCIL  ON DOMESTIC                 
  VIOLENCE  AND  SEXUAL  ASSAULT stated  that  the  Council is                 
  concern that volunteer safe homes would be placed in danger.                 
  She noted that problems have  occurred in other states  that                 
  have instituted caller  identification without offering  the                 
  ability to block the  service.  She did not support  the per                 
  dial blocking.                                                               
                                                                               
  Representative Martin asked if the  legislation is needed to                 
  have their  number blocked.   Ms. McKenzie  stated that  the                 
  legislation  mandates  that the  service be  offered without                 
  charge.                                                                      
                                                                               
  Representative Martin  expressed concern  that the  original                 
  intention  of  allowing  consumers  to  know the  number  of                 
  harassing  phone  calls is  being  nullified.   Ms. McKenzie                 
  reiterated  that  phone tracing  would  allow the  police to                 
  identify harassing phone calls.                                              
                                                                               
  Co-Chair MacLean  MOVED  to  report CSHB  54  (L&C)  out  of                 
  Committee  with  individual  recommendations  and  with  the                 
  accompanying fiscal note.  There being NO  OBJECTION, it was                 
  so ordered.                                                                  
                                                                               
  CSHB 54 (L&C) was reported out of Committee with a "do pass"                 
  recommendation and with a zero fiscal note by the Department                 
  of Commerce and Economic Development, dated 3/17/93.                         

Document Name Date/Time Subjects