Legislature(1995 - 1996)

02/07/1996 01:42 PM TRA

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
 HB 366 MARINE SAFETY EDUCATION PROGRAMS                                   
 Number 011                                                                    
 REPRESENTATIVE ALAN AUSTERMAN, sponsor of HB 366, was first to                
 testify.  He said that for ten years the Alaskan Marine Safety                
 Education Association (AMSEA) has been providing education for both           
 fishermen, students and other interested people in the state of               
 Alaska.  This program was federally funded and that funding will              
 terminate at the end of this year.  He said the CSHB 366(HES)                 
 proposes that this education be continued through state dollars               
 generated from the Fishermen's Fund.  That fund derives its money             
 from fishermen's licenses and CSHB 366(HES) would be funded from              
 the interest off of this fund.                                                
 REPRESENTATIVE AUSTERMAN said approximately 7,300 people trained              
 through the AMSEA program, of that figure 200 were fishermen and              
 3700 children.  He concluded that Alaska does not have a water                
 safety program and HB 366 provides for that.                                  
 Number 160                                                                    
 REPRESENTATIVE JERRY SANDERS asked why CSHB 366(HES) is going to              
 the finance committee if it has a zero fiscal note.                           
 Number 170                                                                    
 REPRESENTATIVE AUSTERMAN said there is approximately a $200,000               
 cost associated with CSHB 366(HES).  He said he does not know why             
 they didn't put it on the top of the fiscal note.  He said CSHB
 366(HES) is asking for $150,000 to be put into this program on a              
 yearly basis.  He added that the Governor has put $80,000 in the              
 budget for this program.                                                      
 Number 206                                                                    
 REPRESENTATIVE SANDERS asked if this money was going to be taken              
 away from someone else.                                                       
 Number 212                                                                    
 REPRESENTATIVE AUSTERMAN said the money will come from general fund           
 money, because that is where the interest from the Fisherman's Fund           
 CHAIRMAN GARY DAVIS said the reason why it is going into the                  
 finance committee, is because of the analysis on the fiscal note              
 which reads, "While the funding source would clearly be the General           
 Fund, it is difficult to determine which Department should reflect            
 the fiscal impact as the bill does not address who the granting               
 agency would be."  He concluded that how CSHB 366(HES) is funded              
 and allocated to, will be determined by the finance committee.                
 Number 270                                                                    
 MARK JOHNSON, Chief, Emergency Medical Services, Division of Public           
 Health, Department of Health and Social Services, was next to                 
 testify.  He said his division has studied the problems of drowning           
 and boating related injuries for a number of years.  He said his              
 division and regional Emergency Medical Service (EMS) programs                
 have worked with the AMSEA program.  He said they have found AMSEA            
 to be very successful.  Statistics have shown that AMSEA is helping           
 to reduce this problem in Alaska, which has been a significant                
 problem.  He showed some training materials developed by AMSEA, and           
 training programs for instructors.  He urged support of CSHB
 Number 420                                                                    
 CHAIRMAN GARY DAVIS asked if there were letters of support from               
 fishermen around the state.                                                   
 AMY DAUGHERTY, Committee Aide to Representative Austerman, said               
 United Fisherman of Alaska (UFA) doesn't issue support publicly               
 until it has their board meeting.  She said that CSHB 366(HES) has            
 wide support.                                                                 
 Number 490                                                                    
 REPRESENTATIVE AUSTERMAN said he would present letters of support             
 at the finance committee.                                                     
 Number 520                                                                    
 JERRY DZUGAN, Director and Training Coordinator, Alaska Marine                
 Safety Education Association, testified via teleconference from               
 Sitka.  He said he was available for questions and referred to                
 letters available in the committee packet supporting CSHB 366(HES).           
 He said last week the last of the federal funds were spent for this           
 program so this is a critical time for this program.                          
 CHAIRMAN GARY DAVIS expressed regret that they were unable to                 
 receive testimony from Jim Herbert, from AvTech.                              
 REPRESENTATIVE SANDERS made a motion to move CSHB 366(HES) with               
 accompanying fiscal notes and individual recommendations out of               
 committee.  Hearing no objection it was so moved from the House               
 Transportation Standing Committee.                                            

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