Legislature(1993 - 1994)

02/22/1994 01:36 PM FIN

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
txt
  HOUSE BILL NO. 454                                                           
                                                                               
       "An  Act making  a  supplemental appropriation  to  the                 
       Department of Law  to pay  costs of certain  continuing                 
       legal  proceedings;  and  providing  for  an  effective                 
       date."                                                                  
                                                                               
  JIM  BALDWIN, ASSISTANT ATTORNEY  GENERAL, DEPARTMENT OF LAW                 
  urged the  Committee to support HB  454.  He noted  that the                 
  Legislature  has financed oil  and gas litigation  on a half                 
  year  basis  so that  activities  can  be  reviewed  at  the                 
  beginning of each legislative session.  He stressed that oil                 
  and  gas litigation is  a constantly shifting  activity.  He                 
  observed that the Department of Law  was funded for FY 94 at                 
  the same level as  FY 93.  The Department had  requested $25                 
  million  dollars for FY 94.   He maintained that the pace of                 
  the current litigation requires additional funds.                            
                                                                               
  Mr.  Baldwin advised  that the  amount  requested in  HB 454                 
  needs to be increased by an additional $2.5 million dollars.                 
                                                                               
                                                                               
  Co-Chair Larson stated that the Department's amended request                 
  would  be  for $13,837.5  million  general fund  dollars and                 
  $4,612.5  million  dollars  in  Permanent  Fund  Corporation                 
  receipts.                                                                    
                                                                               
  Co-Chair Larson  MOVED  to ADOPT  the  new total  amount  of                 
  $18,450.0 million  dollars, $13,837.5  million general  fund                 
  dollars  and  $4,612.5  million dollars  in  Permanent  Fund                 
  Corporation receipts.   There being  NO OBJECTION, it was so                 
  ordered.                                                                     
                                                                               
  Mr. Baldwin noted that  the matters funded in HB  454 are in                 
  active litigation.   He expounded that  the amount of  money                 
  that the Department intends to expend for various aspects of                 
  the litigation is subject  to the attorney/client privilege.                 
                                                                               
                                                                               
  Co-Chair Larson stressed  that under AS  44.62.310 executive                 
  sessions  are  allowed for  matters of  personnel, finances,                 
  litigation, matters that may effect  the operations of state                 
  government  or attorney/client  privileges.   He  reiterated                 
  that   the  matter   before  the   Committee  could   effect                 
                                                                               
                                2                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  attorney/client privileges.                                                  
                                                                               
  EXECUTIVE SESSION                                                            
                                                                               
  Co-Chair MacLean MOVED that the  Committee meet in EXECUTIVE                 
  SESSION for  the purpose of  discussing matters in  CSHB 454                 
  (FIN) that could effect finances of  the State of Alaska and                 
  attorney/client privileges.  There  being NO OBJECTION,  the                 
  House Finance Committee  met in EXECUTIVE SESSION  from 1:45                 
  p.m. to 2:23 a.m.                                                            
                                                                               
  REGULAR SESSION                                                              
                                                                               
  Co-Chair Larson RECONVENED the Committee  in REGULAR SESSION                 
  at 2:23 a.m.                                                                 
                                                                               
  Co-Chair   Larson   reiterated   that   the   total   amount                 
  appropriated by CSHB 454  (FIN) to the Department of  Law is                 
  $18,450.0 million  dollars, $13,837.5  million general  fund                 
  dollars and  $4,612.5  million  dollars  in  Permanent  Fund                 
  Corporation receipts.                                                        
                                                                               
  Representative Navarre MOVED to report CSHB 454 (FIN) out of                 
  Committee with  individual recommendations.  There  being NO                 
  OBJECTION, it was so ordered.                                                
                                                                               
  CSHB 454  (FIN) was  reported out  of Committee  with a  "do                 
  pass" recommendation.                                                        
  sb54                                                                         
  SENATE BILL NO. 54                                                           
                                                                               
       "An Act relating  to violations  of laws by  juveniles;                 
       and providing for an effective date."                                   
                                                                               
  Co-Chair Larson noted that HCS CSSB  54 (FIN) was adopted by                 
  the  House Finance Committee during the 2/11/94 meeting.  He                 
  explained that  transmittal of  the bill  was held to  allow                 
  agencies an  opportunity to  revise their  fiscal notes  for                 
  consideration by the Committee.                                              
                                                                               
  CAROL COLLINS, STAFF, HOUSE FINANCE COMMITTEE clarified that                 
  HCS  CSSB  54  (FIN)  (version, 8-LS0384\G)  was  previously                 
  adopted by the Committee.  She observed that departments had                 
  submitted the  following  revised fiscal  notes;  five  zero                 
  fiscal notes, two  by the Department of  Administration, one                 
  by the Department of Public Safety, one by the Department of                 
  Law and one by the Department of Health and Social Services;                 
  and with four fiscal impact notes,  two by the Department of                 
  Health  and  Social  Services,  one  by  the  Department  of                 
  Corrections, and one by the Alaska  Court System.  She added                 
  that the Committee did not consider the letter of intents by                 
  the Senate and the House Judiciary Committee during previous                 
                                                                               
                                3                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  action.                                                                      
                                                                               
  Representative  Parnell  MOVED  to RESCIND  the  Committee's                 
  action in reporting from Committee HCS CSSB 54 (FIN).  There                 
  being NO OBJECTION, it was so ordered.                                       
                                                                               
  Ms.  Collins  clarified that  a drafting  error was  made in                 
  section 13 of  the previous  version of HCS  CSSB 54  (FIN).                 
  The error was corrected in the version before the Committee.                 
                                                                               
  Representative Hanley  noted that the  Department of  Health                 
  and  Social  Services submitted  a  revised fiscal  note for                 
  $1,125.0 million dollars.                                                    
                                                                               
  ELMER LINDSTROM, SPECIAL ASSISTANT, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND                 
  SOCIAL  SERVICES expresed the  Department's concern that the                 
  Department would be  required to place juveniles  in private                 
  treatment facilities  as defined  on page 15.   He  observed                 
  that in-state costs  for a private treatment  facility could                 
  be as high as  $18 thousand dollars a month.   He emphasized                 
  that  the Department of  Law has  assured the  Department of                 
  Health and Social  Services that the placement  of juveniles                 
  into a private facility would be optional.  He stressed that                 
  the option to use private  treatment facilities would remain                 
  but that the  Department did  not anticipate exercising  the                 
  option.   If  the  Department  exercised the  options  of  a                 
  private treatment  facility the  cost would be  born by  the                 
  Division of Medical Assistance in the medicaid budget.                       
                                                                               
  Mr.  Lindstrom  stated  that the  Department  of  Health and                 
  Social  Services was  withdrawing  their  two fiscal  impact                 
  notes, for $1,125.0 million dollars and $0.2 hundred dollars                 
  with  the  understanding that  the  Department would  not be                 
  compelled to make placements in private facilities.                          
                                                                               
  Representative  Hanley  provided  members with  AMENDMENT  1                 
  (copy on  file).  Amendment 1 would delete on page 15, lines                 
  13 - 16,  "treatment facilities'  means a hospital,  clinic,                 
  institution, center, or other health  care facility that has                 
  been  designated  by  the department  for  the  treatment of                 
  juveniles."                                                                  
                                                                               
  Representative Brown  stressed that  the language gives  the                 
  Department  the  option  of  placing  juveniles  in  private                 
  facilities.    She observed  that  there are  currently four                 
  juveniles  being held who are  awaiting treatment beds.  She                 
  noted  that   construction  of   treatment  beds   would  be                 
  expensive.  She  suggested that it  may be possible to  meet                 
  the  needs  for  treatment  through  contract  with  private                 
  facilities.   She recommended that  the language be  kept in                 
  the legislation.                                                             
                                                                               
                                                                               
                                4                                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  MARGOT KNUTH, CRIMINAL DIVISION, DEPARTMENT OF LAW clarified                 
  that  under  AS  47.10.080(b)(i)  placement  in   a  private                 
  treatment facility is discretionary.   She acknowledged that                 
  litigation could result  from the  language.  She  estimated                 
  that there is a  85 percent chance that the court would rule                 
  in favor of the state with regards to the state's failure to                 
  make placements in private facilities.                                       
                                                                               
  Representative   Hanley   MOVED   to  ADOPT   AMENDMENT   1.                 
  Representative Brown OBJECTED.                                               
                                                                               
  In response to a question by Representative Grussendorf, Ms.                 
  Knuth  observed  that juveniles  awaiting  placement in  the                 
  MacLaughlin correctional facility  are held  at the  Johnson                 
  detention  facility.    Ms.  Knuth  was  not  aware  of  any                 
  litigation initiated by  a juvenile awaiting placement  in a                 
  juvenile treatment facility.                                                 
                                                                               
  A roll call vote was taken on the motion to  adopt AMENDMENT                 
  1.                                                                           
                                                                               
  IN FAVOR: Parnell, Hanley, Martin, Larson                                    
  OPPOSED:  Brown,  Foster,  Grussendorf,   Hoffman,  Navarre,                 
                 MacLean                                                       
                                                                               
  Representatives Therriault was not present for the vote.                     
                                                                               
  The MOTION FAILED (4-6).                                                     
                                                                               
  Representative   Brown  noted  that   the  content   of  the                 
  legislation has  changed.  She questioned  the applicability                 
  of the letter  of intents.   Members decided to address  the                 
  letter of intents when the legislation is before the House.                  
                                                                               
  (Tape Change, HFC 94-38, Side 1)                                             
                                                                               
  Representative Foster MOVED  to report HCS CSSB 54 (FIN) out                 
  of Committee  with individual  recommendations and  with the                 
  accompanying fiscal notes.  There being NO OBJECTION, it was                 
  so ordered.                                                                  

Document Name Date/Time Subjects