Legislature(2003 - 2004)

05/20/2003 04:20 PM FIN

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
                  HOUSE FINANCE COMMITTEE                                                                                       
                        May 20, 2003                                                                                            
                          4:20 PM                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
 Due to Mechanical error, there is no tape of this meeting.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
 CALL TO ORDER                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
 Co-Chair Williams called the House Finance Committee meeting                                                                   
 to order at 4:20 PM.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
 MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
 Representative John Harris, Co-Chair                                                                                           
 Representative Bill Williams, Co-Chair                                                                                         
 Representative Kevin Meyer, Vice-Chair                                                                                         
 Representative Ethan Berkowitz                                                                                                 
 Representative Mike Chenault                                                                                                   
 Representative Richard Foster                                                                                                  
 Representative Mike Hawker                                                                                                     
 Representative Beth Kerttula                                                                                                   
 Representative Carl Moses                                                                                                      
 Representative Bill Stoltze                                                                                                    
 Representative Jim Whitaker                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
 MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
 Representative Berkowitz                                                                                                       
 Representative Kerttula                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
 ALSO PRESENT                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
 Pete Ecklund, Staff,  Co-Chair Williams; Kathryn Daughhetee,                                                                   
 Director, Administrative  Services  Division,  Department  of                                                                  
 Law;  John   Greely,   Staff,   Representative   Joule;   Tim                                                                  
 Benintendi, staff, Representative Moses.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
 PRESENT VIA TELECONFERENCE                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
 Steve Branchflower, Department of Law.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
 SUMMARY                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
 CS SB 100(FIN)                                                                                                                 
      An  Act  making  capital  appropriations,  supplemental                                                                   
      appropriations,   and  reappropriations;   capitalizing                                                                   
      funds; making  other appropriations;  and providing  for                                                                  
      an effective date.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
      HCS CSSB 100(FIN) was REPORTED out of Committee with a                                                                    
      "do pass" recommendation.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
 CS SB 215(STA)                                                                                                                 
     "An Act relating to a lease-purchase  agreement for, the                                                                   
     construction  and equipping of,  and the financing  of a                                                                   
     seafood  and  food  safety  laboratory  facility  to  be                                                                   
     operated    by   the    Department   of    Environmental                                                                   
     Conservation, including the  issuance of certificates of                                                                   
     participation, and the use  of certain investment income                                                                   
     for  certain  construction   and  equipping  costs;  and                                                                   
     providing for an effective date."                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
     CSSB 215  (STA) was REPORTED  out of Committee  with "no                                                                   
     recommendation"  and two fiscal  impact notes:   #2 from                                                                   
     Department  of Environmental  Conservation  and #3  from                                                                   
     the Department of Revenue.                                                                                                 
CS FOR SENATE BILL NO. 215(STA)                                                                                               
     "An Act relating to a lease-purchase  agreement for, the                                                                   
     construction  and equipping of,  and the financing  of a                                                                   
     seafood  and  food  safety  laboratory  facility  to  be                                                                   
     operated    by   the    Department   of    Environmental                                                                   
     Conservation, including the  issuance of certificates of                                                                   
     participation, and the use  of certain investment income                                                                   
     for  certain  construction   and  equipping  costs;  and                                                                   
     providing for an effective date."                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Harris  MOVED  to  report CSSB  215  (STA)  out  of                                                                   
Committee with  the accompanying  fiscal note and  noted that                                                                   
the fiscal notes were included in the capital budget.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Representative Stoltze OBJECTED  for the record. He WITHDHREW                                                                   
his OBJECTION.  There being NO OBJECTION it was so ordered.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CSSB  215  (STA)  was REPORTED  out  of  Committee  with  "no                                                                   
recommendation"  and  two  fiscal  impact  notes:    #2  from                                                                   
Department  of Environmental  Conservation  and  #3 from  the                                                                   
Department of Revenue.                                                                                                          
CS FOR SENATE BILL NO. 100(FIN)                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     An  Act  making  capital   appropriations,  supplemental                                                                   
     appropriations,   and   reappropriations;   capitalizing                                                                   
     funds;  making other appropriations;  and providing  for                                                                   
     an effective date.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Vice-Chair  Meyer  MOVED  to ADOPT  Work  Draft  23-GS1003\B.                                                                   
There being NO OBJECTION, it was so ordered.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Williams MOVED to ADOPT  Amendment A (copy on file.)                                                                   
[Amendment A was an omnibus amendment.]                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
PETE ECKLUND, STAFF, CO-CHAIR  WILLIAMS reviewed Amendment A.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Representative   Berkowitz   asked   for   more   information                                                                   
regarding page 5 of Amendment A.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
 KATHRYN   DAUGHHETEE,   DIRECTOR,  ADMINISTRATIVE    SERVICES                                                                  
 DIVISION, DEPARTMENT  OF  LAW explained  that  the amendment                                                                   
 pertained to section 54, which would allow the Department  to                                                                  
 pay expert  witness costs  already  incurred in  the  Planned                                                                  
 Parenthood suit.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
 Representative  Berkowitz  questioned  how  much  money   was                                                                  
 appropriated  to   the  private   attorney.  Ms.  Daughhetee                                                                   
 observed that $317 thousand was spent to pursue the case.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
 Ms. Daughhetee explained that  the Department of Law did  not                                                                  
 have a contract with the  expert; the Legislative Budget  and                                                                  
 Audit Committee had a contract with the expert. The  existing                                                                  
 contract was amended to be able to pay the fee.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
 Representative  Whitaker   questioned   if  the   claim   was                                                                  
 legitimate. Ms. Daughhetee summarized  that the state has  an                                                                  
 obligation to pay the witness.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
 Representative  Hawker  questioned  if  the  State  would  be                                                                  
 litigated if  the funds  were not available.  Ms. Daughhetee                                                                   
 indicated that litigation could ensue.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
 Representative Berkowitz  MOVED to  Divide  the question  and                                                                  
 separate out the  language on  page 5 of  Amendment A.  There                                                                  
 being NO OBJECTION, it was so ordered.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
 A roll call vote was taken  on the motion to adopt page  5 of                                                                  
 Amendment A.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
IN FAVOR: Foster, Hawker, Kerttula, Meyer, Moses, Stoltze,                                                                      
           Whitaker, Chenault, Harris, Williams                                                                                 
 OPPOSED: Berkowitz                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
 The MOTION PASSED (10-1).                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
 There being NO OBJECTION, Amendment A was adopted.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
 Amendment B was not offered.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
 Representative  Stoltze  MOVED  to  ADOPT  Amendment   C.  He                                                                  
 explained that the amendment would appropriate $28.8  million                                                                  
 from the Railbelt energy fund to the general fund.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
 A roll call vote was taken on the motion.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
 IN FAVOR: Moses, Stoltze, Chenault                                                                                             
 OPPOSED:  Hawker,  Kerttula,   Meyer,  Whitaker,  Berkowitz,                                                                   
           Foster, Williams, Harris                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
 The MOTION FAILED (3-8).                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
 Amendment D was WITHDRAN.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Representative   Kerttula  MOVED   to   ADOPT  Amendment   E.                                                                   
Amendment E would appropriate  the unexpended and unobligated                                                                   
balance, not to exceed $300,000,  of the Alaska Technical and                                                                   
Vocational  Education  Program  Account  as a  grant  to  the                                                                   
Kotzebue Technical Center for operational costs.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
JOHN  GREELY,  STAFF,  REPRESENTATIVE  JOULE  explained  that                                                                   
state grants are needed. He emphasized  the high unemployment                                                                   
rate.                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Representative Kerttula WITHDREW Amendment E.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Representative   Kerttula  MOVED   to   ADOPT  Amendment   F.                                                                   
Amendment   F  would   add  $3.4  million   to  Kawerak   for                                                                   
Shishmearef erosion control revetment.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Harris noted  his  support, but  expressed  concern                                                                   
over the funding.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Mr. Greely noted that matching money is available.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Representative Kerttula WITHDREW the Amendment.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Representative Moses MOVED to  ADOPT Amendment G. Amendment G                                                                   
would  add an  additional  project to  reappropriation  23-LS                                                                   
8002/A.118:   pneumatic   heating    system,   redesign   and                                                                   
reconstruction of the school roof.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
TIM BENINTENDI, STAFF, REPRESENTATIVE  MOSES spoke in support                                                                   
of the amendment. Co-Chair Harris added his support.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
There being NO OBJECTION, it was so ordered.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative Moses MOVED to  ADOPT Amendment H. Amendment H                                                                   
would  reappropriate $102  thousand  from  the Department  of                                                                   
Transportation   and   Public  Facilities   harbor   deferred                                                                   
maintenance  program  to  the  Department  of  Community  and                                                                   
Economic Development  for payment as a grant to  the Lake and                                                                   
Peninsula   Borough  for  the   Perryville  Barge   Ramp/Dock                                                                   
project.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Harris questioned if  the harbor would be taken over                                                                   
by the  local community.  Mr. Benintendi  explained  that the                                                                   
funds would assist in that goal.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Williams  pointed out that it is  statewide funding.                                                                   
Mr. Benintendi explained that  there is no legal restriction,                                                                   
which would prevent the reappropriation.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
A roll call vote  was taken on the motion to  adopt Amendment                                                                   
H.                                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
IN FAVOR: Berkowitz, Kerttula, Moses                                                                                            
 OPPOSED:  Chenault,   Foster,    Hawker,   Meyer,    Stoltze,                                                                  
           Williams, Harris                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
 The MOTION FAILED (3-8).                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
 Representative Moses MOVED to ADOPT Amendment I. Amendment  I                                                                  
 would  add  a  reappropriation  of  $500  thousand  from  one                                                                  
 Unalaska dock project to another.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
 Mr. Benintendi  explained that  the dock  project  is in  the                                                                  
 same community.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
 Co-Chair Williams OBJECTED.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
 IN FAVOR: Berkowitz, Kerttula, Moses                                                                                           
 OPPOSED:  Chenault,   Foster,    Hawker,   Meyer,    Stoltze,                                                                  
           Williams, Harris                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
 The MOTION FAILED (3-8).                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
 Representative Moses MOVED to ADOPT Amendment J. Amendment  J                                                                  
 would reappropriate $153.7 thousand available in Legislative                                                                   
 Budget and Audit for  settlement of attorney fees associated                                                                   
 with reapportionment lawsuits.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
 IN FAVOR: Berkowitz, Kerttula, Moses                                                                                           
 OPPOSED:  Chenault,   Foster,    Hawker,   Meyer,    Stoltze,                                                                  
           Williams, Harris                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
 The MOTION FAILED (3-8).                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
 Co-Chair Harris  observed that  money was  received from  the                                                                  
 state.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
 Co-Chair Williams  MOVED  to allow  the  Legislative  Finance                                                                  
 Division to  make technical  corrections to  the bill.  There                                                                  
 being NO OBJECTION, it was so ordered.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
 Representative Foster MOVED to report HCS CSSB 100 (FIN)  out                                                                  
 of Committee with the  accompanying fiscal note. There  being                                                                  
 NO OBJECTION, it was so ordered.                                                                                               
 ADJOURNMENT                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
 The meeting was adjourned at 6:21 PM                                                                                           

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