Legislature(2005 - 2006)HOUSE FINANCE 519

05/06/2005 08:30 AM FINANCE


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* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
+ HB 237 INTERNATIONAL AIRPORTS REVENUE BONDS TELECONFERENCED
Heard & Held
+ SB 154 JUVENILE DELINQUENCY PROCEEDINGS TELECONFERENCED
Moved HCS CSSB 154 (JUD) Out of Committee
+= HB 291 WORKERS' COMPENSATION RECORDS TELECONFERENCED
Scheduled But Not Heard
+ Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled TELECONFERENCED
                  HOUSE FINANCE COMMITTEE                                                                                       
                        May 6, 2005                                                                                             
                         8:48 A.M.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
CALL TO ORDER                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Meyer called the House  Finance Committee meeting to                                                                   
order at 8:48:01 AM.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Representative Mike Chenault, Co-Chair                                                                                          
Representative Kevin Meyer, Co-Chair                                                                                            
Representative Bill Stoltze, Vice-Chair                                                                                         
Representative Eric Croft                                                                                                       
Representative Richard Foster                                                                                                   
Representative Mike Hawker                                                                                                      
Representative Jim Holm                                                                                                         
Representative Reggie Joule                                                                                                     
Representative Mike Kelly                                                                                                       
Representative Carl Moses                                                                                                       
Representative Bruce Weyhrauch                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
ALSO PRESENT                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Michael  Barton, Commissioner,  Department of  Transportation                                                                   
and  Public  Facilities;  Tom  Boutin,  Deputy  Commissioner,                                                                   
Department of  Revenue; Heather  Brakes, Staff, Senator  Gene                                                                   
Therriault;  Patty  Ware,  Director,   Division  of  Juvenile                                                                   
Justice, Department  of Health  and Social Services;  Anthony                                                                   
Newman, Division  of Juvenile  Justice, Department  of Health                                                                   
and Social  Services;  Anne Carpeneti,  Assistant    Attorney                                                                   
General,  Legal Services  Section-Juneau, Criminal  Division,                                                                   
Department of Law                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
PRESENT VIA TELECONFERENCE                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
none                                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
SUMMARY                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
HB 237    An Act  relating to international  airports revenue                                                                   
          bonds; and providing for an effective date.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
          HB 237 was HEARD and HELD in Committee for further                                                                    
          consideration.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
HB 291    An  Act  relating  to  release  of  information  in                                                                   
          individual workers' compensation records for                                                                          
          commercial purposes; and providing for an                                                                             
          effective date.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
          HB 291 was SCHEDULED but not HEARD.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
CS SB 154(JUD)                                                                                                                  
          An   Act   relating   to   the   jurisdiction   for                                                                   
          proceedings  relating to  delinquent minors  and to                                                                   
          telephonic  and  televised participation  in  those                                                                   
          proceedings;  amending Rules  2, 3,  4, 8,  12, 13,                                                                   
          14,  15,  16, 21,  22,  23,  24.1, and  25,  Alaska                                                                   
          Delinquency  Rules; and providing for  an effective                                                                   
          date.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
          HCS CS  SB 154 (JUD) was reported  out of Committee                                                                   
          with   a   "do  pass"   recommendation   and   with                                                                   
          indeterminate  note #1 and #5 by the  Department of                                                                   
          Administration,  zero note #2 by the  Department of                                                                   
          Law and zero note #3  by the Department of Health &                                                                   
          Social Services.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 237                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     An Act relating to international airports revenue                                                                          
     bonds; and providing for an effective date.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
8:49:08 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MICHAEL  BARTON, COMMISSIONER,  DEPARTMENT OF  TRANSPORTATION                                                                   
AND PUBLIC FACILITIES,  explained that HB 237  would amend AS                                                                   
37.15.410  to  increase  the   cumulative  authorization  for                                                                   
international airport  revenue bonds from the  current $524.5                                                                   
million  dollars to  $812.5 million  dollars.   The  increase                                                                   
allows  the  sale  of  up to  $288  million  dollars  in  new                                                                   
international  airport  revenue   bonds  to  support  capital                                                                   
improvement programs  for fiscal  years 2006 through  2009 at                                                                   
the  Ted  Stevens Anchorage  International  Airport  and  the                                                                   
Fairbanks   International  Airport.     Those  two   airports                                                                   
together  comprise the  Alaska  International Airport  System                                                                   
(AIAS).   AS 37.15.410 clarifies  the cumulative  bond amount                                                                   
authorized since  the creation  of the international  airport                                                                   
revenue-bonding  program,   including  those   already  fully                                                                   
retired.    It   does  not  reflect  the  dollar   amount  of                                                                   
outstanding bonds at any given time.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
8:50:40 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Vice-Chair  Stoltze  asked  the   position  of  the  Aviation                                                                   
Advisory  Board position  on the  legislation.   Commissioner                                                                   
Barton indicated that they had  not taken a "formal position"                                                                   
on it.   He acknowledged  that they  had not been  officially                                                                   
notified.   Vice-Chair  Stoltze  encouraged the  Board to  be                                                                   
consulted.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
8:51:35 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Commissioner   Barton   agreed,    acknowledging   that   the                                                                   
Department consults with them often on projects.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Representative   Weyhrauch  asked   how  many   international                                                                   
airports there  are in Alaska.   Commissioner  Barton replied                                                                   
two that are State owned.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
8:52:12 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Weyhrauch asked  if  Ketchikan's airport  was                                                                   
municipality owned.   Commissioner Barton explained  that the                                                                   
City of  Ketchikan operates  the airport but  it is  owned by                                                                   
the State.   The Alaska International System  is comprised of                                                                   
the  Anchorage  and Fairbanks  airports;  there  is a  formal                                                                   
agreement with all airlines at those two airports.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
8:53:03 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative Weyhrauch noted  that the airport in Ketchikan                                                                   
is called the Ketchikan International  Airport.  Commissioner                                                                   
Barton  replied it  is called  that but  is not  part of  the                                                                   
Alaska International  Airport system.   He added  that Juneau                                                                   
is a municipally  owned airport.  The formal  "trigger" to be                                                                   
considered an international airport  is if the airport offers                                                                   
customs and immigration services.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
8:53:38 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Joule  asked how  revenue  bonds are  repaid.                                                                   
Commissioner  Barton clarified they  would be repaid  through                                                                   
rates  the  airlines pay  to  operate  in the  Anchorage  and                                                                   
Fairbanks  airports.   Important  sources  of revenue  result                                                                   
form  landing  fees  from  either  cargo  and/or  passengers.                                                                   
Eighty percent of  that revenue comes from cargo  and landing                                                                   
fees.                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
8:54:22 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Joule inquired  the cost adjustment  expected                                                                   
to a passenger's ticket.  Commissioner  Barton responded that                                                                   
the  Department  has nothing  to  do  with how  the  airlines                                                                   
establish their ticket prices.   If it were assumed on a 120-                                                                   
passenger level, the cost would be $.72 cents each.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Representative Joule voiced concern  how the cost of fuel and                                                                   
the landing fees will affect ticketing costs.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
8:55:33 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Meyer asked  if ticket  prices would  be raised  to                                                                   
offset  some of  the  proposed  costs.   Commissioner  Barton                                                                   
reiterated  that he did  not know  and reminded members  that                                                                   
was a function  of the airlines.   To pay off all  bonds only                                                                   
through  the landing  fees would  make a  difference of  $.72                                                                   
cents on  each ticket.   Co-Chair Meyer  thought it  could be                                                                   
added to  the cost of freight.   Commissioner  Barton agreed,                                                                   
noting  that  fuel  and  labor  are the  big  costs  for  any                                                                   
airlines.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
8:56:30 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
HB 237 was HELD in Committee for further consideration.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
8:57:23 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CS FOR SENATE BILL NO. 154(JUD)                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     An  Act relating  to  the jurisdiction  for  proceedings                                                                   
     relating  to delinquent  minors  and  to telephonic  and                                                                   
     televised participation  in those proceedings;  amending                                                                   
     Rules 2, 3, 4, 8, 12, 13,  14, 15, 16, 21, 22, 23, 24.1,                                                                   
     and 25, Alaska  Delinquency Rules; and  providing for an                                                                   
     effective date.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
HEATHER BRAKES,  STAFF, SENATOR  GENE THERRIAULT,  noted that                                                                   
SB 154 addresses two concerns  of juvenile justice in Alaska:                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
*    Improving   the  State's   ability   to  hold   juvenile                                                                 
     offenders accountable for their conduct, and                                                                               
*   Increasing   the  efficiency  of  the   juvenile  justice                                                                 
    system by allowing telephonic hearings where personal                                                                       
    appearance is not necessary for the fair determination                                                                      
    of an issue.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Ms.  Brakes  continued,  SB  154  fills  a  gap  in  Alaska's                                                                   
statutes  which allows young  offenders to avoid  prosecution                                                                   
if  their role in a  crime is not discovered until  after the                                                                   
offender  becomes  18 years  of age,  or if  charges are  not                                                                   
filed before the offender turns 18.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
         • Currently, when a person under 18 commits a                                                                          
            delinquent  act, the  juvenile justice  system is                                                                   
            responsible  for that matter; when a  person over                                                                   
            18  commits a  crime, the  adult criminal  system                                                                   
            is responsible for prosecution.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
         • Recent court decisions have highlighted a                                                                            
            loophole  in the  law,  where a  youth commits  a                                                                   
            delinquent  act while under 18 years  of age, but                                                                   
            is   not  discovered   or  proceedings   are  not                                                                   
            identified   until   that  person   reaches   18.                                                                   
            Neither  the adult  nor the  juvenile system  has                                                                   
            clear jurisdiction.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
         • The gap is illustrated by a recent case that                                                                         
            arose in  Kenai.  The State filed  a Petition for                                                                   
            Adjudication  of  Delinquency on  a  19-year-old,                                                                   
            who  was  alleged  to  have  committed  a  sexual                                                                   
            assault when  he was 17 years old.   The Superior                                                                   
            Court dismissed the petition, holding, "there                                                                       
            is nothing in the statutes that suggests the                                                                        
            legislature contemplated adjudication trials                                                                        
            for adults who committed crimes as juveniles."                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
    • SB 154 fills the gap in jurisdiction by holding the                                                                       
        juvenile accountable.  The key change  is found in AS                                                                   
        47.12.020(b),  providing  that the  delinquent  minor                                                                   
        statutes apply  to a person  who commits  a violation                                                                   
        of criminal law of the state or  a municipality while                                                                   
        under 18 years  of age, if  the period  of limitation                                                                   
        under AS 12.10 has not expired.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Ms.  Brakes  concluded  SB 154  amends  Alaska's  Delinquency                                                                   
Rules  to  allow for  telephonic  participation  by  juvenile                                                                   
offenders  in  certain  proceedings.   The  law  would  still                                                                   
require a  juvenile offender to  be present for  all hearings                                                                   
where   personal   presence   is   necessary   for   a   fair                                                                   
determination  of  the  issue.     However,  it  would  avoid                                                                   
expensive travel,  where juveniles  are transported  to court                                                                   
appearances  such  as  status hearings,  when  telephonic  or                                                                   
televised appearance is adequate  for the matter to be fairly                                                                   
decided.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
8:59:57 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
PATTY   WARE,  DIRECTOR,   DIVISION   OF  JUVENILE   JUSTICE,                                                                   
DEPARTMENT  OF HEALTH  AND  SOCIAL SERVICES,  explained  that                                                                   
passage  of the  bill  is important  for  the State  juvenile                                                                   
justice system for two reasons.   With regard to the judicial                                                                   
component resulted  from two court cases out of  Kenai.  Both                                                                   
of  those were  serious offenses  with  multiple accounts  of                                                                   
sexual  assault.   In  both instance,  the  Court ruled  that                                                                   
neither the  juvenile nor the  adult correctional  system had                                                                   
legal  jurisdiction to  do  any type  of  prosecution in  the                                                                   
case.  She stressed  that ruling was not acceptable  and that                                                                   
offenders need to be held accountable.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Ms.  Ware  highlighted  the primary  sections  of  the  bill.                                                                   
Establishing  jurisdiction,  the   two  key  changes  in  the                                                                   
statute are  found in Sections  1 & 7.   Section 1  creates a                                                                   
new sub section  indicating that class of minors.   Section 7                                                                   
allows  the court  to  have  jurisdiction to  adjudicate  and                                                                   
dispose of cases under existing  juvenile statute.  Section 2                                                                   
addresses  clean  up  provisions   in  Title  47  related  to                                                                   
situations  in which,  if  the offender  were  now an  adult,                                                                   
would no longer apply.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
9:03:12 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Ms.  Ware   continued,  Sections  3   -  6  deal   with  dual                                                                   
sentencing.  In the existing delinquency  system, for certain                                                                   
serious offenders  after the age of 16, the  State can impose                                                                   
both a  juvenile and  adult sentence.   That language  allows                                                                   
the same  option in  certain circumstances.   She  summarized                                                                   
that those components deal with  the jurisdictional aspect of                                                                   
the bill.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Ware discussed the last section,  which addresses changes                                                                   
to  the  delinquency   rules.    Currently,   in  that  area,                                                                   
juveniles  have  the  right  to be  present  at  every  court                                                                   
hearing.  The delinquency rules  do not specify which type of                                                                   
court hearings those are.  The  Department of Health & Social                                                                   
Services  ends up  transporting juveniles  for hearings  that                                                                   
sometimes last less than four  minutes and are not contested,                                                                   
which is particularly significant  in the northern regions of                                                                   
the   State  for   offenders   held  in   youth   facilities.                                                                   
Transportation  results  in a  huge  expense.   The  proposed                                                                   
section of the  bill would allow for either  party to request                                                                   
permission  to  be present  by  telephonic appearance.    She                                                                   
advised  this  would  not  hold   true  for  the  substantive                                                                   
hearings.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
9:05:54 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Ms. Ware  emphasized that  decision would  not come  from the                                                                   
Department but  rather, contingent  upon the decision  of the                                                                   
judge.                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
9:06:24 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair Chenault asked if a telephonic  system was currently                                                                   
in  place.   Ms.  Ware  responded  that  telephonic  hearings                                                                   
happen through regular phone lines.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Chenault   asked  about  the  fiscal   notes.    He                                                                   
referenced the fiscal comments  by the Public Defender Agency                                                                   
(PDA) and the Office  of Public Advocacy (OPA).   He asked if                                                                   
the offender  would be tried  as an  adult if the  crime were                                                                   
committed  at the  age  of sixteen  and  then  two years  had                                                                   
lapsed.  Ms. Ware responded that  was a separate component of                                                                   
the bill.   She addressed the jurisdiction  regarding whether                                                                   
the offender  was tried as adult,  which would depend  on the                                                                   
age at  the time  of the offense.   If  the young person  was                                                                   
sixteen or older  at the time of the crime and  the crime was                                                                   
a felony,  even under existing  statute, they would  be tried                                                                   
as an adult offender.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
9:09:10 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  Chenault asked  if that  were the  case, would  the                                                                   
offender have  both a  Public Defender  and an OPA  attorney.                                                                   
Ms. Ware explained  that whether the offender  was a juvenile                                                                   
or  an adult,  the  court decides  the  right  to the  Public                                                                   
Defender Agency.   OPA only steps  in if there is  a conflict                                                                   
of interest.  She added, telephonic  hearings only impact the                                                                   
delinquency rules.   If the offender were tried  as an adult,                                                                   
they would be tried under the criminal rules of court.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
9:10:56 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Croft clarified  that the  offender would  be                                                                   
charged for the  crime as they were at the age  of the actual                                                                   
crime.   Ms. Ware  responded that  is what currently  happens                                                                   
without the proposed  bill.  If a crime is  committed and the                                                                   
system does  not find  out about  it until  after the  age of                                                                   
eighteen years, there is no legal jurisdiction.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Representative Croft commented  on the "black hole" resulting                                                                   
from "the  window of  opportunity" for  trying the  offender.                                                                   
Co-Chair  Chenault was  worried about  costs incurred  to the                                                                   
State.   Ms.  Ware  reiterated  that the  issue  in terms  of                                                                   
jurisdiction is the age at the time of the crime.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Representative Croft asked which  attorney would the offender                                                                   
be assigned if they were no longer  a juvenile at the time of                                                                   
sentencing.   Ms. Ware  guaranteed that  they would  not have                                                                   
two attorneys.   Depending on the circumstances  of the case,                                                                   
the  bill  allows certain  jurisdictions,  depending  on  the                                                                   
severity  of the  case.   It is  not intended  to hold  adult                                                                   
offenders in juvenile institutions  or the juvenile probation                                                                   
officers to supervise adults in the communities.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
9:14:18 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative  Croft asked  when an  offender would  qualify                                                                   
for  the  Public Defender  or  an  OPA  attorney.   Ms.  Ware                                                                   
replied it would be the Public Defender.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
9:14:40 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
ANNE CARPENETI, ASSISTANT   ATTORNEY  GENERAL, LEGAL SERVICES                                                                   
SECTION-JUNEAU,   CRIMINAL  DIVISION,   DEPARTMENT  OF   LAW,                                                                   
offered to answer questions of the Committee.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
9:15:21 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
ANTHONY NEWMAN,  DIVISION OF JUVENILE JUSTICE,  DEPARTMENT OF                                                                   
HEALTH AND  SOCIAL SERVICES, offered  to answer  questions of                                                                   
the Committee.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
9:15:51 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative Hawker  noted that the bill was  available for                                                                   
cross sponsorship.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
9:16:20 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Representative Foster MOVED to  REPORT CS SB 154 (JUD) out of                                                                   
Committee  with  individual  recommendations   and  with  the                                                                   
accompanying fiscal notes.  There  being NO OBJECTION, it was                                                                   
so ordered.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
HCS CS SB 154 (JUD) was reported  out of Committee with a "do                                                                   
pass" recommendation  and with  indeterminate note #1  and #5                                                                   
by  the Department  of Administration,  zero note  #2 by  the                                                                   
Department  of Law  and zero  note  #3 by  the Department  of                                                                   
Health & Social Services.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
ADJOURNMENT                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
The meeting was adjourned at 9:17 A.M.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                

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