Legislature(1999 - 2000)

04/12/1999 01:55 PM JUD

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
SENATE CSSB 99(FIN) - REDISTRICTING BOARD/CENSUS FIGURES                                                                        
CHAIRMAN KOTT announced the next order of business is Senate CSSB
99(FIN), "An Act to clarify the meaning of 'decennial census of the                                                             
United States' in art. VI, Constitution of the State of Alaska, to                                                              
prevent discrimination in the redistricting of the house of                                                                     
representatives and the senate, and to prohibit expenditures of                                                                 
public funds for population surveys or sampling for certain                                                                     
purposes relating to legislative redistricting without an                                                                       
Number 1132                                                                                                                     
TOM MOFFATT, Legislative Assistant to Senator Tim Kelly, Alaska                                                                 
State Legislature, came before the committee and read the following                                                             
sponsor statement into the record:                                                                                              
     This legislation was introduced to end discrimination                                                                      
     against members of the Armed Forces in legislative                                                                         
     redistricting and insure that future redistricting plans                                                                   
     are based on census figures derived from an actual count                                                                   
     of every Alaskan.                                                                                                          
     Senate Bill 99 will eliminate confusion by placing in our                                                                  
     statutes clear answers to two major questions as we                                                                        
     prepare for the United States census in the year 2000 and                                                                  
     the subsequent redrawing of legislative district                                                                           
     boundaries.  This legislation will end the discriminatory                                                                  
     practices of previous redistricting boards and direct                                                                      
     that census numbers derived from estimates or adjustments                                                                  
     based on statistical sampling will not be used to redraw                                                                   
     district lines.                                                                                                            
     The 1959 Alaska Constitution directed that only the                                                                        
     'civilian' population be considered when the boundaries                                                                    
     for State House and State Senate districts were drawn.                                                                     
     During the 1960's, reapportionment boards ignored the                                                                      
     presence of members of the Armed Services completely,                                                                      
     while later boards assigned various percentage values to                                                                   
     service members.                                                                                                           
     In 1970, each soldier, sailor, airman, marine and coast                                                                    
     guardsman in Alaska was counted as 11 percent of a                                                                         
     resident, while in the 1980 redistricting they were                                                                        
     counted as 35 percent of other Alaskans.  That's even                                                                      
     worse discrimination than used before the Civil War when                                                                   
     slaves were counted at only 60 percent of a person for                                                                     
     congressional reapportionment.  The redistricting board                                                                    
     of 1990 was the only one to count members of the military                                                                  
     equally with other residents.                                                                                              
     Today, Alaskans recognize that occupational                                                                                
     discrimination is just as wrong as discrimination based                                                                    
     on race, religion, sex, age, color, or national origin                                                                     
     and that is why the voters removed the word 'civilian'                                                                     
     from the Alaska Constitution at the most recent 1998                                                                       
     election.  But, court decisions from old legal challenges                                                                  
     to previous redistricting boards might still be used as                                                                    
     an excuse to undercount our neighbors in the military.                                                                     
     Senate Bill 99 will establish a statutory bar to future                                                                    
     redistricting discrimination and insure the men and women                                                                  
     serving here in our Armed Forces will not be treated as                                                                    
     second-class Alaskans.                                                                                                     
     Senate Bill 99 will also clarify questions regarding                                                                       
     which numbers from the United States Bureau of the Census                                                                  
     will be used by future redistricting boards to                                                                             
     reapportion Alaska's Legislature.                                                                                          
     Some people have actively arguing that statistical                                                                         
     sampling and estimates replace the actual head count of                                                                    
     every American in the decennial census.  Earlier this                                                                      
     year, the U.S. Supreme Court prohibited the use of                                                                         
     adjusted or estimated figures in reapportioning the seats                                                                  
     of the U.S. House of Representatives among the states.                                                                     
     But that decision left the door open for the Census                                                                        
     Bureau to develop figures through sampling and estimates                                                                   
     and make them available to the states along with the                                                                       
     results of the traditional count.  This bill will close                                                                    
     that door in Alaska for purposes of legislative                                                                            
     If the Census Bureau's report of the decennial census                                                                      
     includes more than one set of figures for Alaska, SB 99                                                                    
     will facilitate the work of the redistricting board and                                                                    
     avoid litigation over the plan they produce.  Senate Bill                                                                  
     99 would prohibit them from using any numbers produced by                                                                  
     estimates or sampling adjustments and directs them to use                                                                  
     only the results of the actual count of Alaska's                                                                           
     population, just as the nation has been doing for the                                                                      
     past 210 years.                                                                                                            
MR. MOFFATT added Senator Kelly understands that there is a                                                                     
proposed House committee substitute and he thinks it is just fine.                                                              
Number 1411                                                                                                                     
CHAIRMAN KOTT indicated there is a proposed House committee                                                                     
substitute for the committee substitute for SB 99, 1-LS0380\S,                                                                  
Kurtz, 4/10/99.  He noted the change is on page 3.  It provides a                                                               
qualified voter the opportunity to bring a challenge against the                                                                
redistricting board to the superior court.                                                                                      
Number 1440                                                                                                                     
KEVIN JARDELL, Legislative Assistant to Representative Joseph                                                                   
Green, Alaska State Legislature, came before the committee to                                                                   
testify.  He indicated there is also a grammatical change.  The                                                                 
proposed committee substitute adds the word "and" to page 2, line                                                               
Number 1493                                                                                                                     
REPRESENTATIVE JAMES made a motion to adopt the proposed House                                                                  
committee substitute for committee substitute for SB 99,                                                                        
1-LS0380\S, Kurtz, 4/10/99.  There being no objection, it was so                                                                
MR. JARDELL explained the changes instill an insurance of bringing                                                              
an action against using discriminatory practice or sampling                                                                     
numbers.  It also makes current statutory language comply with the                                                              
constitutional amendment passed last year.  The constitutional                                                                  
amendment required independent counsel for the board, and the                                                                   
current statutes say that the attorney general's office shall                                                                   
represent the state in all matters.  It also brings in the concept                                                              
that by the time the board is constituted there isn't enough time                                                               
to do the needed preparations to ensure that a fair and unbiased                                                                
redistricting is completed.  The compilation of geographical and                                                                
cultural information takes an enormous amount of time.  In                                                                      
recognizing that, the proposed House committee substitute gives the                                                             
authority to the Alaska Legislative Council to come up and work                                                                 
with the Administration on developing data bases, budgets and                                                                   
accounting systems - the details that will have to be in place for                                                              
the board to draft a fair and unbiased redistricting proposal.                                                                  
Number 1695                                                                                                                     
CHAIRMAN KOTT asked Mr. Jardell whether the legislative council                                                                 
would be the funding source for the redistricting board.                                                                        
MR. JARDELL replied it is assumed that the legislative council                                                                  
would be the funding source.  It would be within its power to go to                                                             
supplemental appropriations.  It would have the ultimate                                                                        
responsibility to ensure that it gets done.                                                                                     
Number 1731                                                                                                                     
REPRESENTATIVE GREEN said the state is behind the curve on data                                                                 
gathering.  This would be an avenue to get the train rolling, but                                                               
problems could arise that would be beyond the authority of the                                                                  
Number 1771                                                                                                                     
REPRESENTATIVE CROFT referred to Article VI, section 3, of the                                                                  
state constitution, and asked Mr. Jardell whether the bill attempts                                                             
to define what the legislature thinks the people meant when they                                                                
enacted the amendment to the constitution.                                                                                      
MR. JARDELL replied Representative Croft's question refers to the                                                               
original Senate bill and deferred it to the sponsor.  In working on                                                             
the constitutional amendment and looking at the situation created                                                               
by the Clinton Administration since the amendment was passed, the                                                               
only requirement is that a census be completed for apportionment.                                                               
It doesn't speak to redistricting.  He said, "Now, with--my                                                                     
understanding of this is that what they're attempting to do is come                                                             
in and say, well, you can't just come up with numbers for some                                                                  
other reason whether it be for federal funding or any other reason                                                              
and say--slap a (indisc.) and say this is the official one.  The                                                                
one that is referenced in the United State's Constitution is the                                                                
one that they were intending  to reference, and that this does, you                                                             
know, speak to that and express the will of the legislature, if it                                                              
does pass."                                                                                                                     
REPRESENTATIVE CROFT asked Mr. Jardell how is the will of the                                                                   
legislature relevant to this.                                                                                                   
MR. JARDELL replied that is his understanding of what the sponsor                                                               
in the Senate is trying to accomplish, and deferred the question to                                                             
the sponsor's representative.                                                                                                   
Number 1959                                                                                                                     
MR. MOFFATT stated, when the amendment to the constitution was                                                                  
passed, nobody envisioned that the official decennial census would                                                              
be anything other than that which has been in effect for 210 years.                                                             
The legislature can always seek to make things clearer, to make                                                                 
suggestions, and to make laws.  The members of the Senate Judiciary                                                             
Standing Committee consider this appropriate.                                                                                   
Number 2031                                                                                                                     
REPRESENTATIVE CROFT said it is not the legislature's place to                                                                  
interpret the constitution.  That is for another branch of                                                                      
government.  What role does the legislature have in telling the                                                                 
people what they meant when enacting the constitution or a                                                                      
constitutional amendment?  According to his reading of the case                                                                 
law, the legislature has almost no role in that, and properly so.                                                               
It is not what the legislature meant when putting the words before                                                              
the people, but what the people meant when they passed it.                                                                      
Usually, the courts look at what the Official Election Pamphlet                                                                 
said, what the voters heard, and what information was available to                                                              
them.  When this issue has been tried, it has been uniformly                                                                    
rejected for a legislature to attempt to interpret the constitution                                                             
or tell the people what they say it has to mean.                                                                                
Number 2135                                                                                                                     
MR. MOFFATT stated, obviously, this is a matter for a philosophical                                                             
debate.  He doubts that the voters had any information in the                                                                   
pamphlet that the official decennial census of the United States                                                                
would be anything other than the traditional head count for the                                                                 
purposes of reapportionment.  That is how it has invariably been                                                                
done.  The concept behind the original bill was because the use of                                                              
samplings or surveys in Alaska have been used for purposes of                                                                   
discrimination, specifically against the military.  This bill                                                                   
mainly seeks to do what the legislature can do to prevent                                                                       
discrimination, to prevent people being counted for less than a                                                                 
whole person for purposes of voting or representation.  He said, 10                                                             
year olds don't vote, but they are represented.  The homeless may                                                               
not be registered to vote, but they are represented, as well as                                                                 
those who suffer disabilities.  The legislature has a proper                                                                    
function in trying to be of every assistance to make sure that                                                                  
discrimination does not occur, and that the actual numbers are                                                                  
used, not just speculative ones.  The courts may determine                                                                      
differently, but the legislature is a policy making body and has                                                                
every right to do its best.                                                                                                     
Number 2395                                                                                                                     
REPRESENTATIVE MURKOWSKI asked Mr. Jardell to clarify Section 4(d).                                                             
She can't imagine that the council independently would have the                                                                 
expertise to develop a computerized system of what the board would                                                              
TAPE 99-29, SIDE A                                                                                                              
Number 0001                                                                                                                     
MR. JARDELL said it takes an enormous amount of time to work                                                                    
through any computer system.  This provision is attempting to have                                                              
the council work with those who have experience, such as Kathryn                                                                
Lizik with the Department of Labor and other experts to choose a                                                                
system, to put it in place, and to start working on it in order to                                                              
make sure it will operate when the board sits down and starts to                                                                
draw a redistricting plan.  The idea is not to have the council                                                                 
develop a system itself, but to make sure that one gets developed.                                                              
Number 0088                                                                                                                     
REPRESENTATIVE MURKOWSKI asked Mr. Jardell whether that would be                                                                
through a contractor, for example.                                                                                              
MR. JARDELL replied it certainly could be through a contractor.                                                                 
It would be up to the council.  The intent is that it gets done on                                                              
Number 0121                                                                                                                     
CHAIRMAN KOTT said the council would not develop the software                                                                   
itself, but it would ensure that there is a vendor out there to                                                                 
provide the information needed, such as mapping.  There are                                                                     
probably a half dozen vendors out there now that have the resources                                                             
available to help.                                                                                                              
MR. JARDELL noted there are about a half dozen systems designed                                                                 
solely for redistricting at this time.  It's a matter of finding                                                                
out which one would be best for Alaska because it has some                                                                      
geographical problems that aren't considered in some of the                                                                     
programs for the Lower 48.  It's a matter of making a decision to                                                               
purchase or lease a program, and making sure that it is up and                                                                  
running when the board needs to sit down and use it.                                                                            
Number 0224                                                                                                                     
CHAIRMAN KOTT offered a technical amendment to change the language                                                              
to read, "responsible for the development of a computerized system"                                                             
[Section 4(d)].  There being no objection, it was so adopted.                                                                   
Number 0300                                                                                                                     
MR. JARDELL stated the intent of the sponsor of the proposed House                                                              
committee substitute is not to step on the toes of the Senate Rules                                                             
Standing Committee.  It is really to make sure that the job gets                                                                
done; to make sure that everything is completed; and to make sure                                                               
that all the tools are available for the board in an honest, fair                                                               
and unbiased condition.                                                                                                         
Number 0369                                                                                                                     
REPRESENTATIVE CROFT asked Mr. Jardell whether he is testifying to                                                              
the intent of the Senate Rules Standing Committee.  Is that                                                                     
committee the sponsor of the committee substitute?                                                                              
MR. JARDELL replied the sponsor of the committee substitute is                                                                  
Representative Green.  He is testifying on Representative Green's                                                               
Number 0397                                                                                                                     
REPRESENTATIVE GREEN commented that he dropped by the U.S. Census                                                               
Bureau when he was in Washington D.C. and was reassured of the                                                                  
enormous amount of preparation.  The bureau said that the state is                                                              
probably late.  A state needs to gear up immediately which is why                                                               
the committee substitute was prepared.  The states needs to have an                                                             
impartial organization and the council seems to be that                                                                         
organization because it doesn't consider one side or the other.  He                                                             
noted that at least it could get things started.  The idea is to                                                                
gain as much data as possible, and to check out the programs.  The                                                              
nuances would be done by the board.                                                                                             
Number 0492                                                                                                                     
REPRESENTATIVE MURKOWSKI asked Mr. Jardell how much would it cost                                                               
to do what the proposed House committee substitute is suggesting.                                                               
MR. JARDELL replied it would cost anywhere from $50,000 to $2                                                                   
million.  There would also be costs for litigation, support                                                                     
services and contracting fees.  There is a lot of room to add on                                                                
incidental costs.                                                                                                               
Number 0576                                                                                                                     
CHAIRMAN KOTT commented the cost for software is anywhere from                                                                  
$3,000 to $150,000 per unit depending on the services associated                                                                
with it.  The figure of $50,000 is probably on the low end when                                                                 
looking at personnel, meetings, office space, length of time from                                                               
start to finish, and support staff.  The figure is probably closer                                                              
to $1 million.                                                                                                                  
Number 0675                                                                                                                     
REPRESENTATIVE GREEN noted the technical portion is probably closer                                                             
to $100,000.  That doesn't include any litigation expenses.                                                                     
Number 0700                                                                                                                     
REPRESENTATIVE MURKOWSKI asked what is happening with the process                                                               
now.  In other words, if this wasn't done, where would it put the                                                               
state when it comes to the year 2000 census?                                                                                    
Number 0734                                                                                                                     
CHAIRMAN KOTT replied there would have to be a supplemental                                                                     
appropriation probably from the legislature's and the Department of                                                             
Labor's budget for the software.                                                                                                
Number 0754                                                                                                                     
MR. JARDELL replied it's a good question.  It speaks to the reason                                                              
for the proposed House committee substitute.  No one knows what                                                                 
would happen.  No one is taking the responsibility at this time to                                                              
get the ball rolling.  It is a state-federal program and most every                                                             
state is participating.  Kathryn Lizik from the Department of Labor                                                             
has been working to designate different geographical features into                                                              
blocks to be used to collect data from.  In towns and                                                                           
municipalities, the blocks are mostly the area of a city block, but                                                             
there are a lot of blocks for a state with a very small population.                                                             
There is no plan once she is finished with that.  The Division of                                                               
Elections [Office of Lieutenant Governor], and the Department of                                                                
Labor have indicated that they aren't doing anything.                                                                           
Number 0868                                                                                                                     
MR. MOFFATT added that he was tangentially involved with the 1970                                                               
and 1980 reapportionment.  The boards were operating in 1969 and                                                                
1979, respectively.  Here, the board will not be constituted until                                                              
the year 2000.  "So, we're behind the eight ball in the substantive                                                             
loss to catch up."                                                                                                              
Number 0929                                                                                                                     
JAMES BALDWIN, Assistant Attorney General, Governmental Affairs                                                                 
Section, Civil Division, Department of Law, came before the                                                                     
committee to testify.  He said a "severability" clause in a bill                                                                
makes him nervous.  The drafter, obviously, was concerned that                                                                  
something in the bill may be found to be unconstitutional.  At                                                                  
least, that's what he did as a bill drafter for the legislature                                                                 
several years ago.  He is involved in the preclearance activity on                                                              
voting laws to the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ).  He is,                                                                    
therefore, concerned how the state will be positioned for the next                                                              
reapportionment.  In the last election, the people voted on a                                                                   
process for a redistricting board composed of the three branches of                                                             
government, under the theory that the balance would lead to a                                                                   
fairer process.  That's how it was presented to the people, and he                                                              
believes that the people accepted and believed that.  He is                                                                     
concerned, therefore, to see one branch tipping that balance in the                                                             
approach taken.  "Now, you and I know that if you can control how                                                               
a board is staffed and the kind of computer equipment that it uses,                                                             
any kind of data that it considers, you have a big leg up over how                                                              
that board functions."  That is how the other two entities involved                                                             
would view it.  This is a partisan political process, and the aim                                                               
of the constitutional amendment was to try to get away from that.                                                               
He is concerned purely from a nonpartisan approach.  And, having to                                                             
be involved in the preclearance and litigation of this, he is                                                                   
concerned that a line is being crossed.  He has discussed with Mr.                                                              
Kevin Jardell the need for a task force including a three-branch                                                                
effort.  Therefore, he was disappointed to see this type of                                                                     
approach.  Maybe, Mr. Jardell is trying to get there somehow, but                                                               
is this the type of process that was intended with the                                                                          
constitutional amendment? he asked.  He noted that there is a group                                                             
within the Administration.  It is set to meet tomorrow.  The                                                                    
committee will hear from the departments involved in this area that                                                             
the big problem is money.  The Administration has given it a lot of                                                             
thought in terms of cost and computer systems, but it realizes it                                                               
can't do it on its own.  The legislature will have to appropriate                                                               
money.  There is a need to get things going, but he questions the                                                               
approach of placing it entirely within the legislative council.                                                                 
Number 1264                                                                                                                     
MR. BALDWIN further stated that he is also concerned about the                                                                  
sampling numbers.  He was the losing party in the Hickel v. Cowper                                                              
case, which tried to define the terms of the constitutional budget                                                              
reserve fund in terms of appropriations.  The Department of Law                                                                 
said that there was no problem in passing a statute interpreting                                                                
and making the constitution specific.  The supreme court reminded                                                               
the department, however, that was its job to interpret the                                                                      
constitution and to make it specific.  The legislature could do                                                                 
things of that nature, but it would be given only some weight.                                                                  
That is the approach being taken here - trying to define the terms                                                              
of a recently passed constitutional amendment as to what the                                                                    
legislature meant by the relying "relying on the U.S. census."  The                                                             
census plans to give the state two sets of numbers which is a                                                                   
problem in terms of litigation and for any number purposes.  He has                                                             
talked to a lot of people with technical knowledge within the                                                                   
Administration and they don't know how the numbers will turn out.                                                               
Who will be the winner?  Who will be the loser?  As a result, the                                                               
Administration doesn't know what to do about them.  They might be                                                               
good for some programs and might not be good for others, but the                                                                
underlying motive is to try and get a more accurate census number.                                                              
They are not intended to dilute anybody's voting lines.  He                                                                     
reiterated the Administration doesn't know whether to support or                                                                
oppose sampling numbers.  The legislators have to look at that too                                                              
in terms of partisan politics and districts and what they mean for                                                              
each district.  It really is a national political issue involving                                                               
whether Montana will lose a seat or New York will gain a seat.  It                                                              
really has no relevance to Alaska with one congressman and a state                                                              
that is largely rural.                                                                                                          
Number 1422                                                                                                                     
MR. BALDWIN further stated the Administration couldn't do a                                                                     
military survey without an appropriation.  A survey is very                                                                     
expensive.  It was the intent last year with HJR 44 not to do a                                                                 
military survey.  But, if the Administration goes to preclear this                                                              
with the U.S. Department of Justice, it may well ask the state to                                                               
prove that there is no discriminatory effect.  He wondered how the                                                              
state would do that without a military survey.  It has the power to                                                             
do that under section 5 of the Voting Rights Act.  If that is the                                                               
case, the Administration will be back asking for money.  In                                                                     
addition, he sees that the preclearance would be done by the person                                                             
hired as the independent legal counsel to the board.  The current                                                               
regulation says that the chief legal officer for the state does the                                                             
preclearance.  He doesn't know how that would square with DOJ                                                                   
regulations.  He doesn't know if that is totally baring.  He would                                                              
be relieved to be out of the preclearance game on this one because                                                              
it will be hot and heavy.  That concern needs to be considered.                                                                 
Number 1599                                                                                                                     
CHAIRMAN KOTT pointed out, that at an overview made before the                                                                  
committee by Kathryn Lizik [Department of Labor], he indicated he                                                               
was going to forward to the Speaker of the House a letter                                                                       
suggesting an ad hoc committee consisting of one person from the                                                                
House and Senate, two people from the Administration, and one                                                                   
person from the Department of Law.  That committee would meet on a                                                              
periodic basis, so that everybody knew what was going on.  He has                                                               
also had three conversations with the Department of Labor                                                                       
indicating that as well, but at this point the "left hand is out                                                                
here and the right hand is out here, and vice versa."                                                                           
Number 1650                                                                                                                     
MR. JARDELL noted that Representative Green has contacted the                                                                   
Administration on several occasions, and that he has spoken with                                                                
them as well on many occasions.  They are still waiting for a                                                                   
return phone call to convey the point person.  The bill speaks to                                                               
the need to do something, and it speaks to the importance of acting                                                             
on it, given the time left in the session.                                                                                      
MR. JARDELL further noted that DOJ regulations say, "or other                                                                   
authorized person."  According to Representative Green's office and                                                             
Legislative Legal and Research Services [Legislative Affairs                                                                    
Agency], the "other authorized person" would be in line with the                                                                
type of position in the bill.                                                                                                   
MR. JARDELL further stated, in referencing partisanship, the                                                                    
importance of ensuring that the adequate tools are provided far                                                                 
outweigh any speculation of partisanship.  It is recognized that                                                                
this has to get done, but nobody is doing anything about it, which                                                              
is why the bill is here.                                                                                                        
Number 1758                                                                                                                     
REPRESENTATIVE GREEN asked Mr. Jardell to discuss the severability                                                              
clause in the bill.                                                                                                             
MR. JARDELL replied the severability clause is in the bill because                                                              
there is doubt about what the courts would do.  But, because the                                                                
importance of this is so high, if a portion is found                                                                            
unconstitutional that's fine and it should be knocked out.  The                                                                 
assurance of the tools that are necessary is the reason for the                                                                 
severability clause.                                                                                                            
Number 1796                                                                                                                     
MR. MOFFATT stated the Senate Finance Standing Committee rejected                                                               
the $100,000 fiscal note for military surveys that Mr. Baldwin                                                                  
referenced.  "This bill, that the Senate Rules Committee has                                                                    
sponsored was passed overwhelmingly in the Senate, specifically                                                                 
sets forth that we don't want anything more to do with surveys,                                                                 
particularly with the military.  We want things to remain the same                                                              
as they were in 1990.  No discounting or discrimination against the                                                             
military or any other Alaskan, and the numbers in 1990 the Justice                                                              
Department cleared nondiscrimination.  It cleared and okayed that                                                               
we don't use surveys and statistical tinkering.  The only reason                                                                
that those samples have ever been used in the past in Alaska is to                                                              
discriminate.  The Justice Department has already cleared the                                                                   
procedure of using the census figures for head count - the                                                                      
enumeration that has been used for 210 years.  We don't need to                                                                 
spend $100,000 to come up with any other justification.  The census                                                             
of 2000 will be (indisc.) there and that's all the numbers that the                                                             
Department of Law or anybody else needs to justify a fair and                                                                   
equitable reapportionment or redistricting.  And, the use of any                                                                
surveys, I think, even might jeopardize our case.  Thank you."                                                                  
Number 1874                                                                                                                     
REPRESENTATIVE GREEN stated the current federal administration                                                                  
would favor some sort of statistical analysis because, in very high                                                             
concentrations of minorities, it's extremely difficult to get a                                                                 
true head count.  In Alaska it's just about the opposite.  A                                                                    
village count is very simple because everybody knows everybody.                                                                 
The only problem would be Anchorage which is broken down by small                                                               
blocks.  A true nose count in Alaska makes a whole lot more sense                                                               
than trying to do some sort of projection that is envisioned for                                                                
large metropolitan areas with extreme numbers of varying types of                                                               
minorities.  The Census Bureau has said for allocation of                                                                       
legislators at the federal level the actual head count will be                                                                  
used, and is leaving the individual states to determine how they                                                                
will do it.  "We're just saying, if it's good there, it should be                                                               
good all the way around."                                                                                                       
Number 1953                                                                                                                     
CHAIRMAN KOTT closed the meeting to public testimony.                                                                           
Number 1977                                                                                                                     
REPRESENTATIVE JAMES made a motion to move the proposed House                                                                   
committee substitute for committee substitute for SB 99,                                                                        
1-LS0380\S, Kurtz, 4/10/99, from the committee with individual                                                                  
recommendations and the attached fiscal note(s).                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE CROFT objected.  He remembers the arguments clearly                                                              
on HJR 44, and the civilian versus military issue.  The                                                                         
discrimination that is being discussed has long been a dead letter                                                              
in the constitution.  The word "civilian" hasn't been used in the                                                               
constitution for decades.  It was not appropriate to take out the                                                               
word "resident" and the question is whether or not the state should                                                             
be counting residents or nonresidents.  Most people would think                                                                 
that the state would want to count the residents for                                                                            
reapportionment purposes.  "We may have a significant amount of a                                                               
population that it--the federal government will tell us very little                                                             
about that is nonresident.  There are various procedures to figure                                                              
out whether they're residents or nonresidents, and we're being                                                                  
prohibited from using those.  I think it's just plain silly to                                                                  
count people who don't reside here.  It--and I think it's purely                                                                
for partisan purposes on--on calculation on how they might vote                                                                 
that we're counting nonresidents in our apportionment.  I was also                                                              
here for the discussion of--of--of what we'd specifically would say                                                             
in the reapportionment division to tie it to a very specific                                                                    
number, and I remember very clearly then Representative, now                                                                    
Speaker Porter saying we want--we wanted to be absolutely clear,                                                                
let's tie it to a number that will be put out - the official                                                                    
decennial census of the United States.  And, that's exactly what he                                                             
wrote and was passed.  The new Article 6, section 3 says,                                                                       
'reapportionment shall be based upon the population within each                                                                 
House and Senate district as reported by the official decennial                                                                 
census of the United States.'  Now, oops we find out we don't like                                                              
the official decennial census of the United States, that over 200                                                               
years how we understand the best way to get an accurate count can                                                               
develop, and in fact it's been shown over and over mathematically                                                               
that for various reasons, sampling gives you a better number,  If                                                               
done right, it is--it is irrefutable on good numbers that with                                                                  
enough--with proper sampling can get you a better number than                                                                   
trying to count every single person.  1, 2, 3, oh did I get Bill?                                                               
I'm up to a million three.  That--so, we are now trying to fix the                                                              
fact that we were overly precise then.  We wanted to be precise and                                                             
have a number.  I remember Representative Porter saying it would                                                                
not be open to debate.  It really isn't.  But--but, for again                                                                   
partisan political reasons we don't like the number that we tied                                                                
ourselves to just a year ago and so we're gonna attempt to change                                                               
it.  Attempt, I say, because I don't think we have the power to do                                                              
this.  The Hickel v. Cowper opinion is very clear that what the                                                                 
twenty-first legislature  has to say about what the twentieth                                                                   
legislature meant in putting before the public an amendment to the                                                              
constitution that they for their own reasons approved just ain't                                                                
particularly relevant.  You know, some of us served then, not all                                                               
of us, but us saying what they meant, more importantly proposing                                                                
something that the people approved is just not our place in                                                                     
the--with three branches of government.  We're suppose to have                                                                  
checks and balances on each other and interpreting the constitution                                                             
is the classic role of the judiciary.  It's why they were put there                                                             
200 years ago - to defend the minority against the majority, and to                                                             
depend the legislature--the people against the legislature trying                                                               
to go in certain areas.  This is the problematic area that I think                                                              
may--that's such a close vote on that constitutional amendment.                                                                 
People were legitimately worried about what we would do, we the                                                                 
legislature, if we were involved in something that was so important                                                             
to us writing our own district lines.  And, here we're trying to                                                                
get more and more involved.  We're threatening funding on                                                                       
positions, we're cutting off, we're trying to get in...To describe                                                              
the leg. council as an impartial body, particularly with the                                                                    
history over the last two years of what is has done, strains                                                                    
(indisc.).  This is a partisan group trying to get in--much                                                                     
involved in this area as they can and luckily we have very little                                                               
that we can't do.  We're buying ourselves a lawsuit to say what we                                                              
can read in the statutes.  We're trying to define what other people                                                             
did and what other people approved.  But, more importantly we're                                                                
just more and more getting into an area that we know it is so                                                                   
important to us we can't be trusted with it.  It's so important to                                                              
us that we cannot resist the urge to play partisan games with.                                                                  
It's also the reason that there was such trouble--there was such                                                                
worry about bringing the judiciary in.  We're gonna put a case                                                                  
before the supreme court that says we've defined it one way were we                                                             
right?  And, the chief justice and four others are gonna vote on                                                                
that and then the chief justice is gonna appoint a person to                                                                    
implement that.  On this, on any number of--of judicial reviews it                                                              
is troubling on the same separation of power argument to have that                                                              
judicial officer involved.  The heart of SB 99 to me is exactly                                                                 
what Mr. Moffatt ended with.  We want things to say the same as                                                                 
they were in 1990.  The 1990 census did an excellent job of                                                                     
gerrymandering this state in--tilted towards a Republican majority,                                                             
and it is a desire that it stay that way.  This is why we shouldn't                                                             
be involved in this process at all.  And I object for all the                                                                   
Number 2264                                                                                                                     
REPRESENTATIVE JAMES said she agrees with a lot of what                                                                         
Representative Croft said.  However, the legislature consistently                                                               
tries to make, in other areas, laws that are criticized as                                                                      
unconstitutional.  She believes that the court didn't make a                                                                    
decision based on the intent of her last constitutional amendment                                                               
to the constitutional budget reserve fund or based on what she, as                                                              
a voter, said it was.  The court read every single word and their                                                               
basic meanings.  She believes it is necessary to have legislation                                                               
that describes what the legislature's intent.  She certainly wants                                                              
to have everyone counted, but if "you don't count them where                                                                    
they're residing, where are you gonna count them?  And, people                                                                  
should all be counted."                                                                                                         
Number 2351                                                                                                                     
REPRESENTATIVE MURKOWSKI stated there isn't anybody at this table                                                               
or in this room that doesn't agree something needs to be started.                                                               
Personally, she would have preferred an approach suggested by Mr.                                                               
Baldwin and Chairman Kott - a task force comprised of members from                                                              
the Administration and legislature, so that there isn't an                                                                      
appearance of bias or partisanship.  She is not convinced that this                                                             
is a perfect approach, but it is better than the alternative -                                                                  
CHAIRMAN KOTT agreed that this is not a perfect approach.  A task                                                               
force could have been formed, but it wouldn't have had any power to                                                             
appropriate money.                                                                                                              
CHAIRMAN KOTT called for a roll call vote.  Representatives Green,                                                              
James, Murkowski and Kott voted in favor of the motion.                                                                         
Representative Croft voted against the motion.  The motion passed                                                               
with a vote of 4-1.  The HCS CSSB 99(JUD), was so moved from the                                                                
House Judiciary Standing Committee.                                                                                             

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