Legislature(2009 - 2010)HOUSE FINANCE 519

03/24/2009 08:30 AM House FINANCE

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Moved Out of Committee
-- Testimony <Invitation Only> --
Heard & Held
-- Testimony <Invitation Only> --
+ Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled TELECONFERENCED
HOUSE CONCURRENT RESOLUTION NO. 13                                                                                            
     Certifying that the State of Alaska requests and will                                                                      
     use any funds provided to the state, a state agency, a                                                                     
     municipality, or a political subdivision of the state                                                                      
     under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of                                                                        
8:41:07 AM                                                                                                                    
LARRY PERSILY,  STAFF, CO-CHAIR  MIKE HAWKER, explained  that                                                                   
HCR  13 is  an option  available to  individual states  under                                                                   
section 1607  of the American  Recovery and Reinvestment  Act                                                                   
(economic stimulus program). Governors  have 45 days from the                                                                   
date the  Act was enacted or  until April 3, 2009  to certify                                                                   
that their  state will participate  in the economic  stimulus                                                                   
program and will  use these funds to create  jobs and promote                                                                   
economic  growth. The  legislature can  decide by  concurrent                                                                   
resolution  to participate  in  the program  if its  governor                                                                   
declines to  participate. The concurrent resolution  would be                                                                   
sent to  the United States  Office of Management  and Budget.                                                                   
There  is  no  specific  deadline   for  legislative  action.                                                                   
However, the receipt of a legislative  resolution (in lieu of                                                                   
action by the governor)  would have to be timely  in order to                                                                   
meet  application  deadlines for  appropriation  of  specific                                                                   
funds.  A resolution is not a  pledge, promise, commitment or                                                                   
contract  to  accept  funds,   participate  in  any  specific                                                                   
programs,  or  to  adhere  to  any  of  the  requirements.  A                                                                   
resolution  is  merely  the  first step  in  a  process  that                                                                   
notifies  the  federal government  that  the  state wants  to                                                                   
participate in federal economic  stimulus programs. The state                                                                   
reserves  judgment as  to participation  in  each program;  a                                                                   
resolution is non-binding and  does not commit the state. Mr.                                                                   
Persily compared  HCR 13  to a  reservation at a  restaurant,                                                                   
which only provides a place at the table.                                                                                       
8:43:43 AM                                                                                                                    
Co-Chair Hawker  asked if  the resolution  is binding  on the                                                                   
executive branch.  Mr. Persily pointed to a  legal opinion by                                                                   
the  Congressional  Research Service,  which  indicated  that                                                                   
there is  nothing in the  stimulus bill that  overrules state                                                                   
law or  is intended  to interfere  with the relation  between                                                                   
the executive  and legislative branches or  administration of                                                                   
state governments. The Congressional  Research Service report                                                                   
concluded  that there  is nothing  to  prohibit the  governor                                                                   
from vetoing  a legislative appropriation. The  executive and                                                                   
legislative   branches   will   have  to   work   out   state                                                                   
participation in each program.                                                                                                  
Co-Chair   Hawker   concluded   that   nothing   trumps   the                                                                   
constitutional authority established  in either the executive                                                                   
or  legislative branches  of  state government.  Mr.  Persily                                                                   
affirmed and  noted that section  1607 was included  to allow                                                                   
legislative  action in the  event that  a state governor  did                                                                   
not act.                                                                                                                        
HCR  13  was   HEARD  and  HELD  in  Committee   for  further                                                                   
8:47:06 AM                                                                                                                    
HOUSE CONCURRENT RESOLUTION NO. 13                                                                                            
     Certifying  that the State  of Alaska requests  and will                                                                   
     use any funds  provided to the state, a  state agency, a                                                                   
     municipality,  or a political  subdivision of  the state                                                                   
     under  the American  Recovery  and  Reinvestment Act  of                                                                   
Co-Chair  Hawker returned  to  HCR 13.  The resolution  would                                                                   
allow  the legislature  to certify  that the  funds would  be                                                                   
used. He  read from  the bill. The  resolution is  a backstop                                                                   
resolution  intended  to  be sympathetic  to  the  governor's                                                                   
bill.  After April  3,  2009 a  legislative  effort would  be                                                                   
necessary.  He  reiterated  that  the  legislation  does  not                                                                   
obligate  the legislature  to accept  funds. The  legislature                                                                   
cannot  mandate that the  executive branch  spend the  funds.                                                                   
The  legislature can  only appropriate  funds.  He termed  it                                                                   
"keeping our options open".                                                                                                     
10:15:59 AM                                                                                                                   
Co-Chair  Stoltze  MOVED  to ADOPT  HCR  13  with  individual                                                                   
recommendations and the accompanying fiscal note.                                                                               
Co-Chair Hawker OBJECTED.                                                                                                       
10:16:31 AM   At-Ease:                                                                                                        
10:17:40 AM   Reconvened:                                                                                                     
Co-Chair Hawker reviewed the question before the committee.                                                                     
Representative  Kelly   commented  that  the   resolution  is                                                                   
necessary   to  continue   the   discussion.   Representative                                                                   
Austerman  echoed Representative  Kelly's  remarks. He  noted                                                                   
concerns, but  the resolution  places the legislature  in the                                                                   
role of discussing ARRA without committing the state.                                                                           
10:19:44 AM                                                                                                                   
Representative  Joule  asked when  the  public  will have  an                                                                   
opportunity  for  public  hearings.  He  labeled  the  public                                                                   
process as an important piece.  Co-Chair Hawker agreed that a                                                                   
full public dialogue  must occur. He noted that  other policy                                                                   
issues compete with the economic issues.                                                                                        
10:21:01 AM                                                                                                                   
Vice-Chair  Thomas  stated  that  he was  available  for  the                                                                   
discussion. He  was cautious  about displacing federal  funds                                                                   
and obligating the state's general funds.                                                                                       
Co-Chair  Hawker   exemplified  a  paradox  of   the  federal                                                                   
stimulus  program.  The  program  was  allegedly  founded  on                                                                   
strengthening the states, but  it has weakened states in some                                                                   
cases. He suggested that a careful look was warranted.                                                                          
10:24:10 AM                                                                                                                   
Representative  Fairclough  reported  on an  email  regarding                                                                   
funds  that  the  governor denied.  She  wondered  if  intent                                                                   
language was  necessary to  ensure public understanding  that                                                                   
the administration  has made  applications during  the policy                                                                   
discussions. She  stated that she was pleased  to receive the                                                                   
email as  the April  3, 2009 deadline  would not  confine the                                                                   
10:25:22 AM                                                                                                                   
Co-Chair Hawker pointed out that state agencies have been                                                                       
directed to fully facilitate receipt funds available without                                                                    
making decisions to accept funds.                                                                                               
Co-Chair Hawker WITHDREW his objection.                                                                                         
HCR 13 was REPORTED out of Committee with a "do pass"                                                                           
recommendation and with a new zero fiscal note by the                                                                           

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
Economic Stimulus Not Included Op and CIP items 3-22-09.pdf HFIN 3/24/2009 8:30:00 AM
HB 199
CSG Final Analysis of ARRA 02-20-09.pdf HFIN 3/24/2009 8:30:00 AM
HB 199
Economic Stimulus Program Funding Summary March 20 2009.pdf HFIN 3/24/2009 8:30:00 AM
HB 199
Economic Stimulus Sectional March 19, 2009.xls HFIN 3/24/2009 8:30:00 AM
HB 199
House Finance March 24 2009OMB Presentation.ppt HFIN 3/24/2009 8:30:00 AM
HB 199
OMB Economic Stimulus Summary As of March 22 2009.pdf HFIN 3/24/2009 8:30:00 AM
SFIN 3/23/2009 9:00:00 AM
HB 199
SB 161
New HCR13-LEG-COU-3-23-09.pdf HFIN 3/24/2009 8:30:00 AM
HCR 13