Legislature(2019 - 2020)GRUENBERG 120

03/10/2020 03:00 PM STATE AFFAIRS

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* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
+= HB 233 ELECTRONIC DISPLAY OF REQUIRED DOCUMENTS TELECONFERENCED
Moved HB 233 Out of Committee
-- Public Testimony --
+= HB 264 PROOF OF INSURANCE: UNSATISFIED JUDGMENTS TELECONFERENCED
Moved HB 264 Out of Committee
-- Public Testimony --
+= HB 250 VOTER REGISTRATION AGE TELECONFERENCED
Moved HB 250 Out of Committee
-- Public Testimony --
*+ HB 307 EXPANDING PRISONER ACCESS TO COMPUTERS TELECONFERENCED
Heard & Held
*+ HB 285 ALASKA COORDINATE SYSTEM OF 2022 TELECONFERENCED
Heard & Held
*+ HB 228 SEX OFFENDER REGISTRY; NOTICE TO VICTIMS TELECONFERENCED
Heard & Held
+ Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled TELECONFERENCED
            HB 285-ALASKA COORDINATE SYSTEM OF 2022                                                                         
                                                                                                                              
3:40:30 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  KREISS-TOMKINS   announced  that  the  next   order  of                                                               
business would  be HOUSE BILL  NO. 285,  "An Act relating  to the                                                               
Alaska Coordinate System of 2022."                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
3:40:49 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  SHAW  introduced HB  285,  as  prime sponsor,  by                                                               
saying  that  HB 285  would  revise  the Alaska  Statute  chapter                                                               
38.20, known as the Alaska Coordinate System.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
3:41:01 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
JOSHUA WALTON,  Staff, Representative  Laddie Shaw,  Alaska State                                                               
Legislature, paraphrased  from his written talking  points, which                                                               
read:                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
   • Thank you Mister Co-Chair, and thank you for the                                                                           
     opportunity to present House Bill 285 to the                                                                               
     committee.                                                                                                                 
   • House Bill 285 revises Alaska Statute chapter 38.20,                                                                       
     known as the Alaska Coordinate System, to reflect                                                                          
     changes in the federal datum used as a base for the                                                                        
     coordinate system and to allow for future updates.                                                                         
   • The updated 2022 datum and Alaska Coordinate System                                                                        
     will greatly improve accuracy, eliminate known issues,                                                                     
     and provide Alaskans an easy system to share                                                                               
     positioning data and access to the National Spatial                                                                        
     Reference System.                                                                                                          
   • So what is a geodetic datum?                                                                                               
        o A geodetic datum is a tool used to define the                                                                         
          shape and size of the earth, as well as the                                                                           
          reference point for the various coordinate                                                                            
          systems used in mapping the earth.                                                                                    
        o Datums are used in geodesy (the study of the                                                                          
          Earth's shape), navigation, and surveying by                                                                          
          cartographers and satellite navigation systems to                                                                     
        translate positions indicated on maps (paper or                                                                         
          digital) to their real position on Earth.                                                                             
      o Each starts with an ellipsoid (stretched sphere),                                                                       
          and then defines latitude, longitude and altitude                                                                     
          coordinates.                                                                                                          
       o One or more locations on the Earth's surface are                                                                       
          chosen as anchor "base-points".                                                                                       
   • The Earth, of course, is not a perfect ellipsoid. It                                                                       
     has hills, mountains, canyons, valleys, and the like.                                                                      
   • Previous datums have not always been able to be [sic]                                                                      
     capture these deviations accurately and consistently.                                                                      
      o For example the most recent datum incorporated in                                                                       
          statute  the North American Datum of 1983,                                                                            
         adopted into statute as the Alaska Coordinate                                                                          
          System of 1983  provides horizontal positions in                                                                      
          latitude and longitude, but not elevation or                                                                          
          altitude positions.                                                                                                   
   • Fortunately, the forthcoming National Geodetic Survey                                                                      
     datum represents a significant improvement in this                                                                         
     regard.                                                                                                                    
   • It relies completely on reference stations that                                                                            
     continuously receive GPS information.                                                                                      
   • For elevation, it combines the previous ellipsoid                                                                          
     height estimations with geoid estimations which are                                                                        
     based in variations in the Earth's gravity.                                                                                
   • We have a short video going over this which may make                                                                       
     things a bit more clear.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
3:43:47 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
[A 4-minute,  40-second video from  the National  Geodetic Survey                                                               
(NGS),  National Oceanic  and Atmospheric  Administration (NOAA),                                                               
entitled "What's  Next for Geodetic  Datums?" was shown,  and can                                                               
be found through the internet link:                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
     https://geodesy.noaa.gov/corbin/class_description/NGS_                                                                     
     Datums_video_2c/                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
3:47:57 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. WALTON continued with his presentation, which read:                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
   • To sum up, this new datum will allow for much more                                                                         
     precise and standardized positioning, which will be of                                                                     
     enormous value for purposes of accurate navigation and                                                                     
     surveying.                                                                                                                 
   • By incorporating this forthcoming datum into our                                                                           
     statutes, House Bill 285 helps ensure that the State                                                                       
     of Alaska is prepared to make full use of the latest                                                                       
     and greatest technical standards available.                                                                                
   • Once this new datum is adopted, the National Geodetic                                                                      
     Survey will no longer support the old systems. Alaska                                                                      
     will not be able to take advantage of improvements in                                                                      
     geodetic positioning, in particular the new gravity-                                                                       
     based elevation which will dramatically improve the                                                                        
     ability to measure elevations in Alaska.                                                                                   
   • Forty-eight states have adopted state plane coordinate                                                                     
     systems in their statutes; all will need to be                                                                             
     updated.                                                                                                                   
   • House Bill 285 does that for Alaska.                                                                                       
   • Scientists, surveyors, design professionals, GIS                                                                           
     specialists, and the geospatial community will all                                                                         
     benefit from an improved coordinate system that                                                                            
     minimizes linear distortions and is designed to                                                                            
     include population centers and resource development.                                                                       
   • Even though the change is over a year away, the time                                                                       
     to prepare is now. While tools will be available to                                                                        
     facilitate the transformation of specific position                                                                         
     information, it can take years to change products                                                                          
     services or databases. Passage of HB 285 is critical                                                                       
     to Alaska maintaining accuracy to survey and mapping                                                                       
     in the near future.                                                                                                        
   • I should note  if I haven't made it painfully obvious                                                                      
     already  that this is not a particular area of                                                                             
     expertise for me.                                                                                                          
   • Fortunately, I don't have to go it alone today; on the                                                                     
     line we have some folks from the Department of Natural                                                                     
     Resources who are far more [knowledgeable] than I am,                                                                      
     specifically:                                                                                                              
        o Gwen Gervelis - Chief Surveyor, State Geodetic                                                                        
          Coordinator                                                                                                           
        o Kris Hess  Deputy Director, Mining, Land and                                                                          
          Water                                                                                                                 
   • With that, I'm happy to go through the brief sectional                                                                     
     analysis, if that's the will of the committee.                                                                             
   • That's all I have. Thank you for the opportunity to                                                                        
     present this legislation, and I remain available for                                                                       
     questions.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
3:51:01 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  KREISS-TOMKINS  asked  why such  specificity  regarding                                                               
geodetic datums is written into law.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
3:51:41 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MARTY  PARSONS,  Director, Division  of  Mining  Land and  Water,                                                               
Department of Natural Resources (DNR),  expressed that he did not                                                               
know  why, but  his guess  is that  working with  a single  datum                                                               
offers consistency  among all  the different  surveying platforms                                                               
and  ensures information  is  consistent  throughout the  various                                                               
types of survey and scientific operations.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SHAW  added that spatial perspective  is important                                                               
relative to establishing the geodesic  survey, which, in turn, is                                                               
important for hiking.   He said that if a  person is hiking 1,000                                                               
vertical feet,  he/she would want  to be sure the  measurement is                                                               
exact.                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  KREISS-TOMKINS  asked  for   the  likelihood  that  the                                                               
coordinate  system would  change  in  a decade  or  two based  on                                                               
improved  technology,  and  the  state  would  again  change  its                                                               
statute.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
MR. PARSONS  replied that  changes in  the coordinate  system are                                                               
out of  the state's  control; the  U.S. Geological  Survey (USGS)                                                               
and NOAA NGS  control the coordinate system;  the last correction                                                               
was in  1983 and before  that in 1927.   He maintained  that once                                                               
the datums  are put in  place, they  are there for  a significant                                                               
period.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SHAW  added that since  1983, so much  has changed                                                               
due  to advanced  technology and  satellite-based systems;  it is                                                               
hard to imagine improvements happening very soon.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  VANCE  asked  how  the change  in  statute  would                                                               
affect activity in DNR and other systems.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
MR.  WALTON responded  that it  would  enable DNR  and all  state                                                               
agencies that  do surveying to  operate with a much  more precise                                                               
positioning  system.   Locations can  be identified  more clearly                                                               
and with more accuracy and less dispute over boundary lines.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. PARSONS explained  that it is important to keep  in mind that                                                               
as people  increase their ability to  locate themselves precisely                                                               
on the  face of  the earth  and do  so quickly,  it significantly                                                               
cuts down  time and  expense in the  surveying process,  not only                                                               
for surveyors but  for lay people.  He added  that it enables the                                                               
state  to  better   monitor  the  movement  of   dams  and  other                                                               
structures due to tectonics.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
3:57:19 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HOPKINS asked whether  Alaska has enough reference                                                               
stations  to  produce satisfactory  results  in  remote areas  of                                                               
state.                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
MR.  PARSONS answered  that with  the  updated Alaska  Coordinate                                                               
System,  the  state  would  have  enough  Continuously  Operating                                                               
Reference  Stations  (CORS)  allowing   Alaska  to  do  real-time                                                               
differential adjustment.  Under  the current system, Alaska would                                                               
need a significant number of additional stations.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HOPKINS asked how  the current system differs from                                                               
the  system proposed  under  HB  285 in  terms  of having  enough                                                               
stations.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
MR. PARSONS  explained that  the new system  would work  with the                                                               
number of stations  Alaska has; under the  current system, Alaska                                                               
would need  to increase the  number of CORS to  perform real-time                                                               
adjustment.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
3:59:51 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
GWEN  GERVELIS,  Surveys Manager,  Division  of  Mining Land  and                                                               
Water, Department  of Natural Resources  (DNR), relayed  that the                                                               
current  CORS  in  the  state  are  adequate  for  accessing  the                                                               
National Spatial  Reference System (NSRS) under  the [2022] datum                                                               
and coordinate system update which  is proposed under HB 285; the                                                               
CORS were used to measure the state for the system.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE STORY  referred to  testimony that 48  states have                                                               
made these  changes and expressed  her understanding  that Alaska                                                               
is  "behind the  curve" in  adopting  the new  coordinates.   She                                                               
mentioned the  zero-fiscal note (FN).   She asked how  many other                                                               
changes would be needed in  response to changing the geographical                                                               
coordinate system and the length of time to make the change.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. WALTON responded that there  are 48 states, including Alaska,                                                               
that have  adopted the  State Plane  Coordinate System  (SOCS) in                                                               
statute.   Any state  with those statutes,  would need  to update                                                               
them ahead of the 2022 datum  coming online, because the NGS will                                                               
support the new specifications and  stop supporting the old ones.                                                               
He opined that  there is a zero FN because  the coordinate system                                                               
is  created and  provided by  the federal  government; therefore,                                                               
the state  would only need  the statutory  change to allow  it to                                                               
use the new standard, but would not need additional equipment.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
MR.  PARSONS concurred  with Mr.  Walton's explanation  and added                                                               
that the coordinate change  represents a mathematical conversion.                                                               
If  Alaska does  not update  its  coordinate system  to the  2022                                                               
references, it  would have  to do  the conversions  itself, which                                                               
introduces error.   Updating  to the  new system  would eliminate                                                               
the error,  allow Alaska to  take the readings directly  from the                                                               
equipment,  and  put the  readings  directly  into the  different                                                               
surveying and scientific programs that use the information.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
4:04:49 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  HOPKINS  asked   whether  surveyors  and  private                                                               
surveying companies  would need to purchase  additional equipment                                                               
or programs to utilize the data.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
MS. GERVELIS answered,  "No, they will not."  She  added that the                                                               
current Global Navigation Satellite  System (GNSS) equipment that                                                               
they use will  access the [updated] system; NOAA  NGS will create                                                               
software to make the transition smooth.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  KREISS-TOMKINS  indicated that  HB  285  would be  held                                                               
over.                                                                                                                           

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
HB 233 Letter of Support 3.9.20.pdf HSTA 3/10/2020 3:00:00 PM
HB 233
HB 233 Letter of Support #2 3.9.20.pdf HSTA 3/10/2020 3:00:00 PM
HB 233
HB 233 Letter of Support #3 3.9.20.pdf HSTA 3/10/2020 3:00:00 PM
HB 233
HB 307 Sponsor Statement v. A 3.9.2020.pdf HJUD 3/23/2020 1:00:00 PM
HSTA 3/10/2020 3:00:00 PM
HSTA 3/12/2020 3:00:00 PM
HB 307
HB 307 Sectional Analysis v. A 3.9.2020.pdf HSTA 3/10/2020 3:00:00 PM
HSTA 3/12/2020 3:00:00 PM
HB 307
HB 307 v. A 3.9.2020.PDF HSTA 3/10/2020 3:00:00 PM
HSTA 3/12/2020 3:00:00 PM
HB 307
HB 307 Fiscal Note DOC-IDO-03-06-20.pdf HSTA 3/10/2020 3:00:00 PM
HSTA 3/12/2020 3:00:00 PM
HB 307
HB 285 Sponsor Statement ver A 3.10.20.pdf HSTA 3/10/2020 3:00:00 PM
HB 285
HB 285 Sectional ver A 3.10.20.pdf HSTA 3/10/2020 3:00:00 PM
HB 285
HB 285 ver A 3.10.20.PDF HSTA 3/10/2020 3:00:00 PM
HB 285
HB 285 Fiscal Note DNR-DMLW-3-6-20.pdf HSTA 3/10/2020 3:00:00 PM
HB 285
HB 228 Transmittal Letter 1.27.2020.pdf HSTA 3/10/2020 3:00:00 PM
HB 228
HB 228 Sectional Analysis 1.27.2020.pdf HSTA 3/10/2020 3:00:00 PM
HB 228
HB 228 Fiscal Note DOA OPA 1.27.2020.PDF HSTA 3/10/2020 3:00:00 PM
HB 228
HB 228 Fiscal Note DMVA Offc Commissioner 1.27.2020.pdf HSTA 3/10/2020 3:00:00 PM
HB 228
HB 228 v. A 1.27.2020.pdf HSTA 3/10/2020 3:00:00 PM
HB 228
HB 228 Fiscal Note DOA PDA 1.27.2020.pdf HSTA 3/10/2020 3:00:00 PM
HB 228
HB 228 Fiscal Note DOC Health and Rehab 1.27.2020.pdf HSTA 3/10/2020 3:00:00 PM
HB 228
HB 228 Fiscal Note DPS Statewide Support 1.27.2020.pdf HSTA 3/10/2020 3:00:00 PM
HB 228
HB 228 Fiscal Note Law Crim. Div. 1.27.2020.pdf HSTA 3/10/2020 3:00:00 PM
HB 228
HB 233 Letter of Support - Testimony 3.9.20.pdf HSTA 3/10/2020 3:00:00 PM
HB 233
HB 233 Letter of Support - Testimony #2 3.9.20.pdf HSTA 3/10/2020 3:00:00 PM
HB 233