Legislature(1997 - 1998)
02/27/1998 01:06 PM JUD
* first hearing in first committee of referral
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
HB 390 - CHARTER MARRIAGES Number 0039 CHAIRMAN GREEN announced the first item of business would be a revisit of HB 390, "An Act relating to marriage; and amending Rules 54 and 56, Alaska Rules of Civil Procedure." Before the committee, but not yet formally adopted, was Version Q (0-LS1062\Q, Lauterbach, 2/26/98). REPRESENTATIVE PETE KELLY, sponsor, referred members to the fourth paragraph of a letter dated February 27, 1998, from Terri Lauterbach, legislative counsel. He indicated at the previous hearing Mr. Zangri of Vital Statistics had requested a change so that anybody who currently had a marriage license in Alaska could come to them and opt for a new license. Representative Kelly stated, "If you'll look in that bottom paragraph, they point out some real difficulties in that, as far as equal protection problems, because we need to recognize marriages from other states. And there's really no way that they can. And the alternative, which is to say we'll only recognize Alaskan marriages, we'd probably end up having to defend that in court." Number 0138 REPRESENTATIVE KELLY told members that although he thought the provision was a good idea, he could certainly live without it. He suggested a conceptual amendment on page 2, line 1. CHAIRMAN GREEN noted that there was a written amendment to cover that, which specified the amendment was to Version Q and which read: Page 2, Lines 1-15, Delete all material and all additional references REPRESENTATIVE KELLY affirmed that was the right one. Number 0186 REPRESENTATIVE JEANNETTE JAMES offered that as Amendment 1. REPRESENTATIVE ETHAN BERKOWITZ objected, saying it was for equal protection purposes. REPRESENTATIVE JAMES said that is why they are taking it out. REPRESENTATIVE BERKOWITZ disagreed, saying it leaves him in a spot that the other members aren't in. He explained, "As the only single person here, speaking on behalf of all single Alaskans, I'd just like to say it's not really fair that we have to make this difficult choice about testamentary or charter marriage. And those of you who have already entered into that holy state of matrimony don't have to make that choice." Number 0304 REPRESENTATIVE KELLY asked whether they need to make references to any possible collateral amendments that would go along with that. He said he wasn't 100 percent sure there wouldn't be any. REPRESENTATIVE ERIC CROFT noted the technical matter of deleting "(a)". He asked whether the effect of the bill would be that a couple could enter into a new charter marriage but could not go from a testamentary marriage into a charter marriage. REPRESENTATIVE KELLY said yes. REPRESENTATIVE BERKOWITZ asked, "So you could get a divorce and then come back and get it straightened out the second time?" REPRESENTATIVE KELLY said that is correct. CHAIRMAN GREEN added, "Any marriage subsequent to the passage of the bill." Number 0353 REPRESENTATIVE KELLY said that was actually recommended, but he had thought it was a little overly complicated. CHAIRMAN GREEN suggested that is the effect. He asked whether the objection was maintained. REPRESENTATIVE BERKOWITZ said yes. Number 0416 CHAIRMAN GREEN requested a roll call vote. Voting for adoption of Amendment 1 were Representatives James, Bunde and Green. Voting against it were Representatives Berkowitz and Croft. Representatives Porter and Rokeberg were absent. Therefore, Amendment 1 was adopted by a vote of 3-2. REPRESENTATIVE KELLY advised members he had no objection to the next amendment, relating to licensed clinical social workers. Number 0442 REPRESENTATIVE JAMES offered Amendment 2, her own amendment, which read: Page 3, line 13: After associate insert: "licensed clinical social worker" CHAIRMAN GREEN pointed out that it adds licensed clinical social workers to the people qualified to do the counseling. He asked whether there was any objection. There being none, Amendment 2 was adopted. Number 0522 CHAIRMAN GREEN asked whether there were questions or further discussion, then indicated HB 390 would be held until later in the meeting. HB 390 - CHARTER MARRIAGES Number 1046 CHAIRMAN GREEN announced that for the second time that day, the committee would take up HB 390, "An Act relating to marriage; and amending Rules 54 and 56, Alaska Rules of Civil Procedure." He noted that they had not yet adopted the proposed committee substitute. Number 1046 REPRESENTATIVE JAMES made a motion to adopt Version Q [0-LS1062\Q, Lauterbach, 2/26/98] as a work draft. There being no objection, it was so ordered. REPRESENTATIVE JAMES made a motion to move HB 390, Version Q, as amended, from the committee with individual recommendations and attached fiscal note(s). Number 1130 REPRESENTATIVE BERKOWITZ objected. CHAIRMAN GREEN requested a roll call vote. Voting to move the bill from committee were Representatives Rokeberg, James, Bunde and Green. Voting against it were Representatives Croft and Berkowitz. Representative Porter was excused. Therefore, CSHB 390(JUD) moved from the House Judiciary Standing Committee by a vote of 4-2.