Legislature(1995 - 1996)

03/22/1995 03:25 PM House L&C

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
           HOUSE LABOR & COMMERCE STANDING COMMITTEE                           
                         March 22, 1995                                        
                           3:25 p.m.                                           
 MEMBERS PRESENT                                                               
 Representative Pete Kott, Chairman                                            
 Representative Norman Rokeberg, Vice Chairman                                 
 Representative Kim Elton                                                      
 Representative Gene Kubina                                                    
 Representative Brian Porter                                                   
 Representative Beverly Masek                                                  
 Representative Jerry Sanders                                                  
 MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                
 COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                            
 Confirmation Hearing:  Ray Smith to the Alaska                                
                        Labor Relations Board                                  
 HJR 23:     Relating to the North Pacific Fishery Management                  
             Council's inshore/offshore allocations and the                    
             Western Alaska Community Development Quota                        
             PASSED OUT OF COMMITTEE                                           
 *HB 60:     "An Act relating to impairment rating guides used in              
             evaluation of certain workers' compensation claims."              
             PASSED OUT OF COMMITTEE                                           
 *HB 224:    "An Act relating to the state plumbing code."                     
             HEARD AND HELD                                                    
 (* First public hearing)                                                      
 WITNESS REGISTER                                                              
 RAY SMITH, Business Representative; and                                       
 Financial Secretary                                                           
 Painter's Union                                                               
 4020 Dale Street, No. 1                                                       
 Anchorage, AK 99517                                                           
 Telephone:  (907) 279-3556                                                    
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Answered questions regarding his                         
                      confirmation to the Alaska Labor Relations               
 REPRESENTATIVE ALAN AUSTERMAN                                                 
 Alaska State Legislature                                                      
 State Capitol Building, Room 434                                              
 Juneau, AK 99801-1182                                                         
 Telephone:  (907) 465-2487                                                    
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Prime sponsor HJR 23                                     
 KIM METCALFE HELMAR, Special Assistant                                        
   to the Commissioner                                                         
 Department of Community & Regional Affairs                                    
 P.O. Box 112100                                                               
 Juneau, AK 99811-2100                                                         
 Telephone:  (907) 465-2948                                                    
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified on HJR 23                                      
 REPRESENTATIVE IVAN IVAN                                                      
 Alaska State Legislature                                                      
 State Capitol Building, Room 503                                              
 Juneau, AK 99801-1182                                                         
 Telephone:  (907) 465-4942                                                    
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in support of HJR 23                           
 ELIZABETH ROBERTS, House Researcher                                           
   to Representative Bettye Davis                                              
 Alaska State Legislature                                                      
 State Capitol Building, Room 430                                              
 Juneau, AK 99801-1182                                                         
 Telephone:  (907) 456-3875                                                    
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Prime sponsor of HB 60                                   
 PAUL GROSSI, Director,                                                        
 Division of Worker's Compensation                                             
 Department of Labor                                                           
 P.O. Box 25512                                                                
 Juneau, AK 99811-5512                                                         
 Telephone:  (907) 465-2797                                                    
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified on HB 60                                       
 REPRESENTATIVE VIC KOHRING                                                    
 Alaska State Legislature                                                      
 State Capitol, Room 428                                                       
 Juneau, AK 99801-1182                                                         
 Telephone:  (907) 465-2186                                                    
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Prime sponsor of HB 224                                  
 ROBERT MINCH                                                                  
 Alaska Design Professional Council                                            
 P.O. Box 20857                                                                
 Juneau, AK 99802                                                              
 Telephone:  (907) 586-1321                                                    
 POSITION STATEMENT;  Testified in support of HB 224                           
 DWIGHT PERKINS, Special Assistant                                             
   to the Commissioner                                                         
 Department of Labor                                                           
 P.O. Box 21149                                                                
 Juneau, AK 99802-1149                                                         
 Telephone:  (907) 465-2700                                                    
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified on HB 60                                       
 REPRESENTATIVE JEANNETTE JAMES                                                
 Alaska State Legislature                                                      
 State Capitol Building, Room 102                                              
 Juneau, AK 99801-1182                                                         
 Telephone:  (907) 465-3743                                                    
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified on HB 224                                      
 MARK BLACKWELL                                                                
 1210 O'Conner Road                                                            
 Fairbanks, AK 99709                                                           
 Telephone:  (907) 452-3293                                                    
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified on HB 224                                      
 DAN PORTWINE, Portwine Plumbing & Heating                                     
 1500 Alaska Way                                                               
 Fairbanks, AK 99709                                                           
 Telephone:  (907) 479-3046                                                    
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified against HB 224                                 
 MICHAEL HIRT, Owner,                                                          
 Comfort Mechanical                                                            
 P.O. Box 81863                                                                
 Fairbanks, AK 99708                                                           
 Telephone:  (907) 479-3771                                                    
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified against HB 224                                 
 LEONARD KIMBALL, Building Official                                            
 City of Kodiak                                                                
 P.O. Box 1397                                                                 
 Kodiak, AK 99615                                                              
 Telephone:  (907) 486-8070                                                    
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified against HB 224                                 
 JOHN BUTLER, Johns Heating                                                    
 P.O. Box 2610                                                                 
 Kodiak, AK 99615                                                              
 Telephone:  (907) 486-3706                                                    
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified against HB 224                                 
 TOM STREIFEL, Streifel Plumbing & Heating                                     
 P.O. BOX 2070                                                                 
 Kodiak, AK 99615                                                              
 Telephone:  (907) 486-3794                                                    
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified against HB 224                                 
 LEE HOLMES                                                                    
 2710 Scarbrough Drive                                                         
 Anchorage, AK 99504                                                           
 Telephone:  (907) 333-5735                                                    
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in support of HB 224                           
 LEE DESPAIN                                                                   
 P.O. Box 73246                                                                
 Fairbanks, AK 99707                                                           
 Telephone:  (907) 479-4062                                                    
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified on HB 224                                      
 STEVE SHUTTLEWORTH, Building Official                                         
 City of Fairbanks                                                             
 2588 Riverview Drive                                                          
 Fairbanks, AK 997078                                                          
 Telephone:  (907) 479-4279                                                    
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified against HB 224                                 
 LARRY LONG, Plumbing Inspector                                                
 City of Fairbanks                                                             
 326 Baranof Street                                                            
 Fairbanks, AK 99701                                                           
 Telephone:  (907) 459-6724                                                    
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified against HB 224                                 
 BILL SAGER, President                                                         
 Chandler Plumbing & Heating                                                   
 129 Minnie Street                                                             
 Fairbanks, AK 99701                                                           
 Telephone:  (907) 456-5282                                                    
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified against HB 224                                 
 REPRESENTATIVE GENE THERRIAULT                                                
 Alaska State Legislature                                                      
 State Capitol Building, Room 421                                              
 Juneau, AK 99801-1182                                                         
 Telephone:  (907) 465-4797                                                    
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified on HB 224                                      
 PREVIOUS ACTION                                                               
 BILL:  HJR 23                                                                
 SPONSOR(S): REPRESENTATIVE(S) AUSTERMAN,Ivan,Foster,Finkelstein               
 JRN-DATE     JRN-PG               ACTION                                      
 01/25/95       129    (H)   READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRAL(S)                 
 01/25/95       129    (H)   FSH, LABOR AND COMMERCE                           
 01/30/95       180    (H)   COSPONSOR(S): FINKELSTEIN                         
 02/08/95              (H)   FSH AT 05:00 PM CAPITOL 124                       
 02/08/95              (H)   MINUTE(FSH)                                       
 03/08/95              (H)   FSH AT 05:00 PM CAPITOL 124                       
 03/08/95              (H)   MINUTE(FSH)                                       
 03/09/95       675    (H)   FSH RPT  CS(FSH) NEW TITLE 4DP                    
 03/09/95       676    (H)   DP: G.DAVIS, OGAN, ELTON, AUSTERMAN               
 03/09/95       676    (H)   ZERO FISCAL NOTE (F&G)                            
 03/22/95              (H)   L&C AT 03:00 PM CAPITOL 17                        
 BILL:  HB  60                                                                
 SPONSOR(S): REPRESENTATIVE(S) B.DAVIS                                         
 JRN-DATE      JRN-PG              ACTION                                      
 01/06/95        36    (H)   PREFILE RELEASED                                  
 01/16/95        36    (H)   READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRAL(S)                 
 01/16/95        36    (H)   L&C, HES, FIN                                     
 03/22/95              (H)   L&C AT 03:00 PM CAPITOL 17                        
 BILL:  HB 224                                                                
 SHORT TITLE: STATE PLUMBING CODE                                              
 SPONSOR(S): REPRESENTATIVE(S) KOHRING,Green                                   
 JRN-DATE     JRN-PG               ACTION                                      
 03/03/95       564    (H)   READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRAL(S)                 
 03/03/95       564    (H)   LABOR & COMMERCE                                  
 03/22/95              (H)   L&C AT 03:00 PM CAPITOL 17                        
 ACTION NARRATIVE                                                              
 TAPE 95-22, SIDE A                                                            
 Number 000                                                                    
 The House Labor & Commerce Committee meeting was called to order              
 by Chairman Pete Kott at 3:25 p.m.  Members present at the call               
 to order were Representatives Kott, Kubina, Elton and Masek.                  
 Members absent were Representatives Sanders, Rokeberg and Porter.             
 CHAIRMAN PETE KOTT stated there were three matters to come before             
 the committee, including the confirmation hearing for the Alaska              
 Labor Relations Agency.  Chairman Kott stated for the record that             
 Representative Sanders had joined the meeting directly after the              
 call to order.                                                                
 CHAIRMAN KOTT asked Mr. Smith to clarify a memo the committee had             
 received stating he was being confirmed to the Alaska Labor                   
 Relations Agency.                                                             
 Number 046                                                                    
 RAYMOND SMITH testified via teleconference that he was being                  
 appointed to the Alaska Labor Relations Board.  He stated he had              
 returned to Alaska in 1976, but had missed the pipeline.  He has              
 been involved in labor most of his life.  In Oregon, he had been              
 a garbage man, and upon returning to Alaska became involved in                
 the Painters Union and is a glazier by trade.  He has served on               
 the Executive Board and has taught classes.  Six years ago, he                
 was elected Business Representative and Financial Secretary for               
 the union.  He has tried to entrench himself in labor issues                  
 throughout the state.  He is also President of Electric Alaska                
 Building and Construction Trades Council.  He feels the Alaska                
 Labor Relations Board is very important, and he told the                      
 committee he would serve impartially and successfully.  He said               
 he would strive to fulfill his duties.                                        
 CHAIRMAN KOTT stated there are six members appointed to the board             
 by the Governor.  Two have backgrounds in management, two in                  
 labor, and two are from the general public.  He pointed out that              
 Mr. Smith would be filling one of the seats from the labor                    
 MR. SMITH responded this was correct; he was replacing Daryll                 
 Smith from the plumbers.                                                      
 CHAIRMAN KOTT asked for clarification that his appointment date               
 was March 6 with an expiration date of June 30.  Chairman Kott                
 also asked whether Mr. Smith was only being appointed for a three             
 month period.                                                                 
 MR. SMITH responded this was the same information he had                      
 Number 108                                                                    
 REPRESENTATIVE MASEK asked if this position is usually a two or a             
 four-year term.                                                               
 CHAIRMAN KOTT said the Boards and Commissions handbook indicated              
 the term is three years.  He added Mr. Smith may only be filling              
 the remaining portion of one of the other member's terms.                     
 Number 121                                                                    
 REPRESENTATIVE GENE KUBINA stated that someone from the                       
 department was presently checking on why this appointment was                 
 only for three months.                                                        
 CHAIRMAN KOTT reiterated that unless there was an error in the                
 paperwork, Mr. Smith would be filling the remaining portion of                
 another member's term.                                                        
 MR. SMITH added he believed the term to be three years and that               
 he, in fact, would be filling Daryll Smith's remaining term.  He              
 said the term expires in 1995.  He would be interested in                     
 continuing to serve after this term expires.                                  
 Number 136                                                                    
 REPRESENTATIVE KUBINA asked if one had to wait until the term                 
 expired before someone else could be appointed.                               
 CHAIRMAN KOTT stated that in this situation, it would be odd to               
 appoint someone for six months because they'd be back in Juneau               
 to reexamine the appointment.  He asked if there were any further             
 questions for Mr. Smith.                                                      
 REPRESENTATIVE KUBINA suggested they set this aside until someone             
 from the department got back to them regarding the length of the              
 CHAIRMAN KOTT concurred they would hold this over until a                     
 determination had been made that the confirmation dates were                  
 correct.  He said this should be by the end of the day, and he                
 thanked Mr. Smith for his testimony.                                          
 REPRESENTATIVE KIM ELTON asked to confirm Mr. Smith's telephone               
 number so the committee staff could let him know the disposition.             
 MR. SMITH stated his work number was 279-3556.                                
 HJR 23 - COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT FISHING QUOTAS                               
 Number 184                                                                    
 CHAIRMAN KOTT said the next matter before the committee was HJR
 23, sponsored by Representative Alan Austerman.                               
 Number 191                                                                    
 the committee had before them a copy of the CS and he would like              
 to read the following statement for the record:                               
      "HJR 23 asks the North Pacific Fishery Management Council to             
      reauthorize the inshore/offshore allocations and the                     
      Community Development Quota (CDQ) program before they expire             
      at the end of this year.                                                 
      "The inshore/offshore allocation stipulates that 35 percent              
      of the pollock in the Bering Sea and 100 percent of the                  
      pollock in the Gulf of Alaska be brought ashore to                       
      processing facilities.  The CDQ program developed a                      
      partnership between Western Alaska communities and the                   
      multimillion-dollar Bering Sea groundfish industry.  The                 
      economic successes of these programs are crucial to the                  
      small communities throughout Western and Southwest Alaska.               
      "Extending the inshore/offshore allocation, and the pollock              
      CDQ program, will preserve stability in the groundfish                   
      industry during the period required for the Council to                   
      develop a comprehensive rationalization plan.  The                       
      inshore/offshore allocation and pollock CDQS were initially              
      passed to serve as a bridge to comprehensive                             
      rationalization.  It has taken the Council longer than                   
      anticipated to accomplish their goal of the comprehensive                
      rationalization plan."                                                   
 REPRESENTATIVE AUSTERMAN said the inshore/offshore issue was very             
 vital to the coastal communities in the Gulf of Alaska and in the             
 Bering Sea.  He said 90 percent of the Pacific cod catch was                  
 being brought ashore in addition to 100 percent of pollock to be              
 processed in the Gulf of Alaska.  He explained this was the                   
 reason for the CDQ program, to create jobs for Alaskans.  He                  
 commented that he wasn't familiar with the total history of how               
 the CDQ program was eventually tied in with the inshore/offshore              
 issue but acknowledged it was an intricate part of that issue.                
 He pointed out that if this program goes by the wayside,                      
 processing will again return offshore and many jobs will be lost,             
 not only in the coastal communities but also in places like                   
 Anchorage that have a large influx of seafood processing jobs.                
 He stated a representative from the Department of Community &                 
 Regional Affairs, who administers the program, and a                          
 representative from the Department of Fish & Game would answer                
 any questions the committee might have.                                       
 CHAIRMAN KOTT stated for the record that Representatives Rokeberg             
 and Porter had joined the meeting at 3:35 p.m.                                
 Number 249                                                                    
 REPRESENTATIVE KUBINA commented that the $1.4 billion paid to the             
 fish harvesters was a huge amount.                                            
 REPRESENTATIVE AUSTERMAN noted these were groundfish off the                  
 coast of Alaska.  He said close to 80 percent of the poundage                 
 landed off the coast of Alaska, including salmon, are groundfish.             
 This is in comparison to the overall catch of seafood products.               
 Number 262                                                                    
 REPRESENTATIVE KUBINA asked if line 13 on page 1, which states                
 the CDQ program sets aside 7.5 percent of the quota for the                   
 communities, was correct.                                                     
 REPRESENTATIVE AUSTERMAN answered it was.                                     
 REPRESENTATIVE KUBINA asked if there was a way to increase this               
 Number 268                                                                    
 REPRESENTATIVE AUSTERMAN responded there had been discussion on               
 this and he would defer any technical questions to the                        
 department.  He added there was also an effort to include other               
 products in the CDQ program, but at this time, the resolution                 
 addresses only the pollock issue.  He explained the system is set             
 up so that, in the Bering Sea, the 7.5 percent comes off the top              
 of the total allowable catch.  The remaining allowable catch is               
 divided by the 35 percent that comes onshore in addition to the               
 7.5 percent.  He said that 65 percent of the remaining fish is                
 processed offshore by the large processors.                                   
 Number 282                                                                    
 CHAIRMAN KOTT asked if the three departments involved in                      
 monitoring the CDQ program are the Department of Fish & Game, the             
 Department of Commerce, and the Department of Community &                     
 Regional Affairs.                                                             
 REPRESENTATIVE AUSTERMAN replied this was correct, and there                  
 would be someone from C&RA joining them at the table.                         
 CHAIRMAN KOTT pointed out that backup materials indicate the                  
 United Fisherman of Alaska (UFA) do not support expansion of the              
 CDQ program to fisheries in the Gulf Alaska.  He asked if the CDQ             
 program was currently in the Gulf, and if they are talking about              
 expanding the program.                                                        
 REPRESENTATIVE AUSTERMAN responded there aren't any CDQ programs              
 in the Gulf of Alaska, and based upon the dynamics of the Gulf,               
 he doubts there ever would be.  He explained if there were a CDQ              
 program in the Gulf, it could include some communities on the                 
 California coast.  He said they never expect a CDQ program in the             
 Gulf of Alaska, and this is what they are talking about when                  
 referring to expansion.  They don't want it expanded.  He added               
 that 100 percent of the pollock in the Gulf of Alaska is                      
 allocated to shoreside plants.                                                
 CHAIRMAN KOTT, referring to a letter from UFA, asked                          
 Representative Austerman to clarify the last paragraph which                  
 states, "Therefore, UFA endorses reauthorization of the existing              
 CDQ program in the Bering Sea pollock sea fishery in existing                 
 inshore/offshore programs for both the Bering Sea and the Gulf of             
 Number 295                                                                    
 REPRESENTATIVE AUSTERMAN explained that in the Gulf of Alaska                 
 there is no CDQ program.  However, 100 percent of the pollock                 
 catch is allocated to shoreside processing.  If catcher                       
 processors come up from the Lower 48, they must bring their catch             
 onshore to be processed.  He reiterated that 90 percent of the                
 Pacific cod in the Gulf is processed onshore.  He said in the                 
 Bering Sea, there is an allocation of inshore/offshore in the CDQ             
 program.  He said because of the lack of infrastructure, Western              
 Alaska coastal communities don't have the ability to go out and               
 catch this product; it is all being caught off their shores, but              
 there is no way for them to capitalize on it.  He said this                   
 allows them to have an allocation for fish they can resell to                 
 processors.  This also generates revenue for the community.  He               
 acknowledged comments had been made that this resembled a social              
 program, but without this program the product would, most likely,             
 go to Seattle and would not benefit Alaska.                                   
 Number 341                                                                    
 REGIONAL AFFAIRS, reiterated that the Department of Community &               
 Regional Affairs, the Department of Fish & Game, and the                      
 Department of Commerce are involved in regulating the CDQ program             
 on a state level.  The National Marine Fisheries Service is the               
 regulator on the federal level.  She gave the following brief                 
 history on the CDQ program:  The CDQ program was approved by the              
 North Pacific Fisheries Management Council in December 1992.  The             
 program allocated 7.5 percent of the total allowable catch of the             
 Bering Sea pollock to 56 Alaska villages located within 50 miles              
 of the Bering Sea Coast.  The communities participating in the                
 program range from the Seward Peninsula continuing to the                     
 Southwestern  Aleutian community of Atka.  There are also                     
 communities on the Pribilof Islands, St. Lawrence Island and                  
 Diomede Island.  She said the CDQ program was a unique                        
 opportunity to bring jobs to regions traditionally having few                 
 employment opportunities.  The program allowed access to the                  
 fishery that the residents of the regions would otherwise not                 
 have been able to afford.  She stated the data gathered in the                
 1990 census showed that 25 percent of the people in the region                
 were below the poverty level, and only 49 percent of the adults               
 held jobs.                                                                    
 MS. METCALFE-HELMAR continued that the CDQ program was fashioned              
 to allow the CDQ communities to harvest their allocation on an                
 annual basis.  It allowed them to fish their quota whenever they              
 chose.  The groups contracted with private sector seafood                     
 companies to ensure that the pollock would be harvested and                   
 processed in an economically efficient manner.  She said the                  
 partners offer the CDQ groups various training, employment and                
 educational opportunities on vessels or at shoreside processing               
 plants.  She cited data from a draft report the Department of                 
 Community & Regional Affairs is currently working on:  The CDQ                
 group areas had an average of a 16 percent unemployment rate.  Of             
 the people employed, the largest number, at 26 percent, were                  
 employed by the school district.  Only 2 percent of the                       
 population at the time, held fishery-related jobs.  The per                   
 capita annual family income for CDQ communities averages $10,000              
 per year, and the average income per household according to the               
 1990 census was $36,479 per year.  She said in 1993, the six CDQ              
 groups reported wages totaling $2.5 million.  In 1994, they                   
 reported wages of $5.2 million.  The number of CDQ jobs in 1993               
 totaled 173; in 1994, the jobs totaled 387.  Wages earned by CDQ              
 employees averaged $14,500 in 1993, and $13,300 in 1994, although             
 some 4th quarter earnings had not been reported at that time.                 
 She continued that the reauthorization of the inshore/offshore                
 allocations in the CDQ program had the wholehearted support of                
 the Knowles Administration.  The Administration believes this is              
 a great example of a program that encompasses the                             
 Administration's stated goals of public/private partnerships and              
 job creations, and therefore, the Administration would ask the                
 committee to support this resolution.                                         
 Number 392                                                                    
 CHAIRMAN KOTT asked what the net result would be if the North                 
 Pacific Fishery Management Council was not reauthorized.                      
 MS. METCALFE-HELMAR responded there were many programs still in               
 the beginning stages that were started in late 1992.  The                     
 villages involved are just now starting on these projects.  She               
 said  one of the villages is sending students to the Seward                   
 Vocational Center to learn how to build aluminum boats.  Those                
 students will go back with that skill, and the boats will go back             
 to the community.                                                             
 Number 405                                                                    
 REPRESENTATIVE KUBINA asked if the outlook was good for the                   
 MS. METCALFE-HELMAR replied at this time the prognosis was good.              
 REPRESENTATIVE AUSTERMAN commented that he was not sure how                   
 closely tied the inshore/offshore issue was with the CDQ program.             
 He said the inshore/offshore issue of bringing the product to                 
 shore for processing was a hard fought battle that had gone all               
 the way to Washington, D.C. a number of times.  He said without               
 that allocation, the bulk of the product would be going South.                
 He said it was imperative for the coastal communities to not lose             
 any allocation for the product coming ashore.                                 
 CHAIRMAN KOTT asked Representative Ivan to join the members at                
 the table.                                                                    
 Number 427                                                                    
 represents some of the communities in the Coastal Village                     
 Cooperative area for the group of CDQ villages in the Lower                   
 Yukon.  He said the six groups involved in the program are given              
 the opportunity to participate in the offshore pollock fishing                
 operation that they partner with established industries.  He said             
 the proceeds are invested by each CDQ group, depending on the                 
 strengths and weaknesses of their economic situation.  He                     
 commented that across the board contributions are made to                     
 scholarship programs and individual job training.  He concluded               
 by saying the program was a foot-hold, and an extension would                 
 provide an opportunity for ongoing, established fisheries in the              
 Western communities.  They also are trying to prevent ongoing                 
 limited entry permits.  For example, in Bristol Bay these groups              
 partner with local established communities and are part of the                
 CHAIRMAN KOTT asked if there were any questions for                           
 Representative Ivan or anyone else wishing to testify.  Hearing               
 none, he closed public testimony.                                             
 Number 460                                                                    
 REPRESENTATIVE BRIAN PORTER made a motion to move CSHJR 23(FSH)               
 from committee with individual recommendations and attached                   
 fiscal notes.                                                                 
 CHAIRMAN KOTT stated there was a motion to move CSHJR 23(FSH) out             
 of committee with individual recommendations.  He asked if there              
 were objections.  Hearing none, the motion passed.                            
 HB 60 - IMPAIRMENT RATING GUIDES FOR WORKERS CO                              
 CHAIRMAN KOTT stated the next order of business was HB 60.                   
 Number 418                                                                    
 this was a very friendly bill.  She said the Department of Labor,             
 the Division of Worker's Compensation and the American Medical                
 Association (AMA) all support the bill.  She said HB 60 deals                 
 with an existing statute that says the Division of Worker's                   
 Compensation has to use a 1986 AMA impairment guide.  Since 1986,             
 they have had two revised editions and a 200-page supplement.                 
 Since then, they have come up with many more diseases.  She                   
 explained if a disease or injury is not included in the book,                 
 then it has not been rated, in which case the injured worker                  
 would not qualify for any compensation.  She said the AMA                     
 recognizes the shortcomings of the new book, the 4th edition, and             
 they recommend the supplement, "Understanding the AMA Guides," be             
 used in conjunction with it.  She explained the bill mandates the             
 use of the newest revised edition and supplemental material.  She             
 added it carries a zero fiscal note.                                          
 CHAIRMAN KOTT observed the Prime Sponsor of the bill,                         
 Representative Bettye Davis, had joined the meeting.                          
 Number 498                                                                    
 REPRESENTATIVE BETTYE DAVIS stated this legislation could garnish             
 bipartisan support.  She said it was important for people  to use             
 this guide, to have the most up-to-date information.  She said it             
 is supported by the AMA, as well as the Department of Labor.  She             
 thanked the committee and hoped they would move it in a timely                
 Number 506                                                                    
 REPRESENTATIVE NORMAN ROKEBERG asked what the industry's opinion              
 of the bill was.                                                              
 REPRESENTATIVE DAVIS responded that they support it.                          
 Number 516                                                                    
 the department supports the bill.  He said the  1980 amendments               
 require that AMA guides be used in rating physical and mental                 
 problems.  He explained the problem is that every time there is a             
 change in the guides there must be regulatory changes.  To keep               
 current they must go through the regulatory hearing process.                  
 This bill simplifies that process and makes it automatic.  He                 
 noted this had been tried previously, a few years back, by                    
 regulation, but the division was told by the Department of Law                
 that a statutory change would be required.  He reiterated the                 
 department supports the bill because it streamlines the                       
 regulatory process.                                                           
 CHAIRMAN KOTT commented it would seem that the department would               
 use the most current information available.                                   
 MR. GROSSI pointed out the department was told by the Department              
 of Law this was too vague and regulatory change was required.  He             
 said they were currently using the 3rd edition;  however, the 4th             
 edition is out, and they would probably hold regulatory hearings              
 this summer to become current.  He added, by the time the                     
 regulation gets signed in, there may be another change in the                 
 guide and they would be behind again.  This is the problem                    
 they're facing.                                                               
 CHAIRMAN KOTT asked if the department had a copy of the 4th                   
 edition in their possession.                                                  
 Number 531                                                                    
 MR. GROSSI responded that they had it in their possession, but                
 could not use it.                                                             
 Number 544                                                                    
 REPRESENTATIVE KUBINA commented this would be a cheaper way to do             
 it and there would most likely be a zero fiscal note because the              
 regulatory hearings would not be mandated.                                    
 MR. GROSSI agreed, but said they usually would combine it with                
 other regulatory hearings.  And, in fact, if there happened to be             
 no other reason to hold a regulatory hearing, it could be they                
 would have to pay the transportation costs for the board members              
 just to change the regulations.                                               
 Number 551                                                                    
 REPRESENTATIVE PORTER asked if anyone else would be testifying on             
 HB 60.                                                                        
 Number 564                                                                    
 CHAIRMAN KOTT answered that no one else had signed up to testify.             
 REPRESENTATIVE PORTER commented that he had seen these types of               
 discussions that everyone agreed on go too far.  He would                     
 entertain a motion.                                                           
 Number 569                                                                    
 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG asked what the insurance industry's                   
 position on the bill was.                                                     
 MR. GROSSI said he assumed they would support it, as it was the               
 most current and accurate scientific body of knowledge for rating             
 injured workers.                                                              
 CHAIRMAN KOTT closed public testimony on HB 60.                               
 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG noted that he had spoken to                           
 representatives from the Alaska National Insurance Company and                
 they said it was okay with them.                                              
 Number 574                                                                    
 REPRESENTATIVE PORTER made the motion to move HB 60 from                      
 committee with individual recommendations and a zero fiscal note.             
 CHAIRMAN KOTT asked if there were objections.  Hearing none, the              
 motion passed.                                                                
 HB 224 - STATE PLUMBING CODE                                                 
 Number 581                                                                    
 CHAIRMAN KOTT said they would now hear from the Prime Sponsor of              
 HB 224.                                                                       
 there was a zero fiscal note accompanying the bill.  The basic                
 intent of the bill was to give the Department of Law the                      
 authority to adopt and amend the Uniform Plumbing Code (UPC).  He             
 said it does not make any changes to the existing code or adopt a             
 new version of code.  It simply changes the process by which the              
 code is adopted.  HB 224 has been supported by various labor                  
 unions and plumbing contractors, as well as engineering firms.                
 The Department of Labor would administer the code in a more                   
 timely manner.  He said this was a safety issue as far as setting             
 minimum safety standards of plumbing installations.  Because the              
 UPC code is so technical, it would make more sense for the                    
 Department of Labor to be the administrator.  He concluded by                 
 saying the Plumbing Code was the last code that still required                
 legislative approval.  He respectfully requested the committee's              
 consideration of the bill.                                                    
 CHAIRMAN KOTT asked if there were any questions for the prime                 
 Number 619                                                                    
 ROBERT MINCH, ALASKA DESIGN SPECIALTY COUNCIL, testified they                 
 were in favor of the bill.  He said it would go a long way in                 
 cleaning up the process of adopting regulations covering the                  
 construction and design industries.  He encouraged them to pass               
 this from committee, and he added he would answer any questions.              
 CHAIRMAN KOTT asked if there were questions.  He then called                  
 Dwight Perkins to the table.                                                  
 Number 626                                                                    
 the department supports HB 224 with a technical change.  On page              
 2, line 3 through line 9, beginning with, "unless changed by the              
 department", under C & D of the section, he said they found lines             
 3 through 9 redundant.  This is addressed in the 1991 Plumbing                
 Code which the state is currently using.  This particular                     
 language came about when they were under the previous code which              
 did not address the Federal Clean Water Standard Act regarding                
 lead in water.  This is federally mandated; therefore, this                   
 language has to apply.  He said it is addressed in two separate               
 sections of the 1991 Plumbing Code.  He reiterated that the                   
 department supports the bill.                                                 
 Number 641                                                                    
 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG asked Mr. Perkins to briefly describe the             
 process for the adoption of the plumbing code in the state.                   
 Number 648                                                                    
 MR. PERKINS responded that currently the (indiscernible).                     
 TAPE 95-22, SIDE B                                                            
 Number 000                                                                    
 MR. PERKINS continued, saying the plumbing code is adopted by                 
 statute.  The Department of Labor does not have the authority, by             
 regulation, to adopt new codes as they become effective.  The                 
 most recent code became effective on June 12, 1991.  HB 224 would             
 allow the department to hold public hearings for contractors and              
 design professionals to have the opportunity to either add to, or             
 delete from the plumbing code.                                                
 Number 034                                                                    
 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG asked if any mechanical engineers were on             
 staff at the Department of Labor.                                             
 Number 038                                                                    
 MR. PERKINS answered that two of the inspectors are plumbers, and             
 the chief engineer is an electrician.                                         
 Number 050                                                                    
 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG asked if this was coincidental or                     
 required by statute.                                                          
 MR. PERKINS responded he wasn't familiar with the job                         
 Number 055                                                                    
 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG asked who wrote the regulations.                      
 MR. PERKINS stated the mechanical section of the Department of                
 Labor would write those regulation.                                           
 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG asked if mechanical engineers were part               
 of that.                                                                      
 MR. PERKINS responded he was not sure if they were licensed to do             
 mechanical engineering within the state.                                      
 Number 065                                                                    
 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG asked if they hold public hearings in                 
 order to adopt local amendments to the codes.                                 
 Number 070                                                                    
 MR. PERKINS said that was correct.                                            
 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG asked if, historically, this was what the             
 legislature has done.                                                         
 MR. PERKINS replied that, historically, amendments had been                   
 proposed in regards to other plumbing codes.  Those amendments                
 never were adopted, and the codes were adopted as originally                  
 written.  He said, "Alaska is a different place, and in some                  
 instances things don't work the way they should, but the                      
 department and the users of the code would have the opportunity               
 to make amendments, where needed, to alleviate problems."                     
 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG asked if the legislature has ever made                
 amendments to the code.                                                       
 MR. PERKINS said in a past life, he had been a lobbyist who was               
 involved with trying to make amendments to the code.  He said                 
 because of the lack of understanding of the technical portion of              
 the code, the legislature did not feel they were enough of an                 
 informed body to take what he said as gospel.                                 
 Number 098                                                                    
 CHAIRMAN KOTT asked Mr. Perkins to explain the difference between             
 a single and double wall heat exchanger.                                      
 Number 105                                                                    
 MR. PERKINS replied that primarily in areas where oil fired                   
 domestic boilers are used, there is a heat exchanger submersed                
 inside the boiler that protects potable water.  He explained that             
 propylene glycol is added to the system.  If the heat exchanger               
 should rust out, the water in which it is immersed would leak                 
 into the potable water system.  He said with a double wall                    
 exchanger you would have that extra protection.                               
 Number 139                                                                    
 CHAIRMAN KOTT asked what the department's position would be on                
 retaining the single wall heat exchanger.                                     
 Number 141                                                                    
 MR. PERKINS stated the department recognizes the need for looking             
 into this section of the code to amend it and allow single wall               
 exchangers in certain areas.  He said, "until they have the                   
 authority to make regulatory changes, they are at a loss to do                
 so, and the inspectors are following what they can by the code,               
 and the code says one thing, and until they are given the                     
 regulatory to make those changes their hands are tied."                       
 REPRESENTATIVE KUBINA interpreted that as saying the department               
 doesn't want to put exceptions into the law.  They want the                   
 ability to write the regulations themselves.                                  
 Number 164                                                                    
 MR. PERKINS stated they would fine tune the codes to Alaska's                 
 needs, and in this instance, with heat exchangers, they do see a              
 need for change.                                                              
 Number 170                                                                    
 REPRESENTATIVE KUBINA asked if the department didn't want to                  
 write those changes into law.                                                 
 MR. PERKINS responded no.  They feel the contractors and plumbers             
 should sit down with the Department of Labor and hammer out their             
 differences so the results would be in the best interest of the               
 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG said the state presently (indisc.)                    
 electrical codes and national codes that had been adopted.  He                
 asked if this was a similar regulatory plan on a three year                   
 cycle, or do they only make local amendments if there is public               
 Number 184                                                                    
 MR. PERKINS explained that the public is notified through                     
 newspapers and public advertisements that the department will be              
 adopting the next version of the code, along with any suggested               
 changes.  He said the public process is followed so any changes               
 to the code will be heard at locations throughout the state.                  
 Number 198                                                                    
 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG asked if the drafting attorneys made the              
 ultimate decision.  He commented that even though there is public             
 input, it doesn't always mean those interests are followed.                   
 Number 202                                                                    
 MR. PERKINS said with the exception of the Elevator Code, this is             
 the last construction code yet to be adopted by regulation.  He               
 pointed out the Electrical Code was adopted last year, and the                
 department now has the authority to adopt regulations for that                
 code.  The department does not view this legislation as                       
 adversarial to the users of the code, but as a streamlining                   
 process.  The public would have the opportunity to be involved in             
 adopting codes and making amendments.                                         
 CHAIRMAN KOTT asked Representative Rokeberg to hold his questions             
 as they had many more people to testify.  He asked Representative             
 Jeannette James to join them at the table.                                    
 Number 225                                                                    
 REPRESENTATIVE JEANNETTE JAMES voiced her concerns about HB 224.              
 She stated that the Department of Labor should not be given                   
 "carte blanche" authority to write regulations.  She pointed out              
 that when the department had been given specific points to work               
 with in the past, the regulations still haven't always come out               
 as they should.  In that regard, she disputes the bill.  However,             
 if the bill is to move forward, it should be amended.  She                    
 recognized that the Department of Labor said they would address               
 the concerns some people have with single wall heat exchangers.               
 However, from past experience, the people in her district are not             
 satisfied this will, in fact, happen.  The legislature is lazy to             
 have spun off the opportunity to make law by giving it to the                 
 Administration.  When it comes to codes directly affecting                    
 Alaska, there is a policy decision.  When it comes to making                  
 policy, the policies ought to be made by elected officials of the             
 legislature.  If the legislature gives the authority to the                   
 Department of Labor, it would be totally derelict in its duty.                
 She said the department should be implementing the statutes as                
 the legislature imposes them.                                                 
 REPRESENTATIVE JAMES continued that with single wall heat                     
 exchangers, there generally isn't any potable water in the                    
 system.  Propylene glycol is a nontoxic fluid and not a problem.              
 She added they have also been hearing from the people that "when              
 you write regulations and make us dance this other dance that we              
 haven't been dancing, please tell us and figure out how much it               
 will cost to dance the other dance."  She asked if the cost and               
 benefit would be balanced.  As the current bill is written,                   
 coupled with existing law, home owners wouldn't have the means to             
 have single wall heat exchangers.                                             
 REPRESENTATIVE JAMES offered an amendment to HB 224 to address                
 the concerns of people being affected physically and financially              
 by the legislation.  "This amendment would allow that in single               
 wall construction, if the heat transfer medium is water and                   
 either propylene glycol or other essential nontoxic fluids,                   
 having a toxicity rating of Class One, or class of one as listed              
 in Clinical Toxicology of Commercial Products, Fifth Edition, and             
 the pressure of the heat transfer medium is limited to a maximum              
 of 30 pounds per square inch by an approved safety relief valve.              
 And the heat exchanger is permanently and (indisc.) labeled with              
 instructions concerning Sections 1 and 2 of this section."  She               
 said the rest of the three-page amendment is legal drafting that              
 "permits this to happen and continue happening."                              
 Number 313                                                                    
 CHAIRMAN KOTT opened testimony on the teleconference line.                    
 Number 318                                                                    
 MARK BLACKWELL, PLUMBING CONTRACTOR, testified via teleconference             
 on HB 224.  He read the following statement:  "I would like to                
 address the current fact-finding committee on the proposed                    
 inclusion of HB 224, and the impact of not including the 10.03 K              
 amendment the city of Fairbanks adopted January 1, 1993.  I                   
 specifically would like to address the use of single wall heat                
 exchangers, common component of domestic water systems in use for             
 80 years.  The multiple thousands of systems are in daily use                 
 around Fairbanks and many millions of these systems are used                  
 worldwide on a daily basis.  The single wall domestic heat                    
 exchanger coil remains the industry standard in terms of                      
 application and affordability to the end user, namely you and I,              
 in our residences, apartment buildings, even in commercial                    
 buildings.  I know of no verifiable deaths or illness directly                
 attributable to its use in Fairbanks due to a compromised or                  
 failed coil.  The cost benefit equation, far outweighs any life               
 safety issues that may remotely arise with its continued use.  I,             
 therefore, urge the committee to consider the 10.03 K amendment               
 which carries the prudent thinking of not only people in                      
 Fairbanks, but also manufacturers, engineers and contractors                  
 Number 355                                                                    
 DAN PORTWINE, PORTWINE PLUMBING & HEATING, testified from                     
 Fairbanks via teleconference on HB 244.  He urged the committee               
 not to pass HB 224 without the 10.03 K amendment.  The single                 
 wall coil should be fully acceptable for heating domestic hot                 
 water under most circumstances.  The vast majority of boilers in              
 the Fairbanks area have single wall coils in use.  He has been in             
 the plumbing business in Fairbanks for 21 years.  In that time,               
 he has experienced three leaking coils.  All three coils were                 
 new, but had manufacturers defects which were discovered upon                 
 installation.  He has never experienced any health hazards caused             
 by the single wall coil.  (Indisc.) under normal circumstances                
 the domestic side of the coil, which operates at a higher                     
 pressure than the boiler enclosed side, will flow into the                    
 boiler, over pressure the boiler and turn the pressure release                
 valve on the boiler (indisc.--mumbling).  He said requiring                   
 nontoxic glycol in water as the heating fluid should adequately               
 address the safety issue.  He stated requiring double wall coils              
 would place unreasonable hardships on home and property owners.               
 Double wall coils are available for normal boilers.  Tank-type                
 water heaters with double wall boilers are very expensive and                 
 inefficient.  Operating electric or gas hot water heaters in                  
 Fairbanks is very expensive.  The oil fired water heaters are                 
 expensive to purchase and install.  His basic concern is a                    
 product that has been in use for 80 to 100 years does not warrant             
 the expense and hardships placed on the citizens of this state.               
 The Department of Labor has been aware of this problem.                       
 Number 382                                                                    
 MICHAEL HIRT, OWNER, COMFORT MECHANICAL testified via                         
 teleconference that on February 24, 1995, he received a long                  
 distance phone call from the acting Chief Mechanical Inspector,               
 Gerard Mankel, for the state.  Mr. Mankel referred to a single                
 wall coil that Mr. Hirt had installed at the Alaska Veterinary                
 Clinic, 410 Trainer Gate Rd., Fairbanks.  Mr. Mankel asked if he              
 intended to change the system in order to comply with the 1991                
 Uniform Plumbing Code Section 1003 K.  He informed Mr. Mankel                 
 that at the time the job was bid and designed, the 1979 UPC was               
 enforced with the state.  The 1988 UPC was enforced by the city,              
 and did not include language referring to single wall coils.  He              
 told Mr. Mankel the project was built within the city of                      
 Fairbanks and was subject to the administration authority of the              
 City Building Department.  The city of Fairbanks, during                      
 construction of this project, adopted the 1991 UPC at                         
 approximately the same time the state did.  However, the city of              
 Fairbanks chose to amend and clarify the code language to the                 
 city ordinance so it would be consistent with the UPC's intent.               
 He stated that he, in good faith, paid for a permit with the city             
 and expected the city to be the administrative authority to                   
 follow.  He told Mr. Mankel he had no intention of changing                   
 anything at the present time.  They also spoke of other                       
 interpretations of the ASME Code.  Recent misinterpretation by                
 state officials has caused thousands of dollars of expense to                 
 interior owners, only to find the officials had misinterpreted                
 its intent.  He then asked if Mr. Mankel agreed with the city                 
 ordinance in allowing single wall coils in cases where potable                
 water was on both sides of the coil.  He said Mr. Mankel's                    
 response was that he only enforces the state statutes, he doesn't             
 try to interpret them.                                                        
 MR. HIRT stated he would like to see HB 224 amended by having the             
 heat exchanger amendment and also that the administrative                     
 authority be defined as being the most local authority.  For                  
 example, a city would be more local than a borough.  Depending on             
 building demand, they would have a part or full-time official on              
 the payroll to administer the UPC, within its defined boundaries.             
 This is essential for proper application of the code.  The                    
 Department of Labor would interpret things as they see fit.                   
 Number 420                                                                    
 KODIAK ISLAND BOROUGH, testified via teleconference that single               
 wall coil heat exchangers had been in use for many years in                   
 Kodiak without any serious cost connection problems.  The 1991                
 edition of the UPC out ruled these systems in spite of the fact               
 they had done very well with oil fired burners.  Much of the                  
 United States still allows for this system.  Natural gas is not               
 available in Kodiak, and they feel the UPC is unfairly impacting              
 their community.  In 1991, the Kodiak Code Review Committee, made             
 up of contractors and citizens, recommended an exception to the               
 code allowing the continued use of single wall heat exchangers.               
 He said the City Council and Kodiak Island Borough Assembly,                  
 after holding public hearings, unanimously approved the                       
 exception.  He said that by refusing to accept tried and tested               
 material, still approved in many parts of the country, and                    
 tolerating requirements that are excessive, permits the code to               
 provide basic minimal provision necessary for (indisc.), the UPC              
 code is straying from its stated purpose to provide minimum                   
 requirements and standards for the protection of public health,               
 safety, and welfare.  He closed by asking the committee to                    
 support the amendment allowing the continued use of single wall               
 heat exchangers as proposed by the city of Fairbanks, the city of             
 Kodiak, and the Kodiak Island Borough.                                        
 Number 447                                                                    
 JOHN BUTLER, JOHN'S HEATING SERVICE IN KODIAK, testified via                  
 teleconference that if HB 224 is initiated, he would like to see              
 the amendment to the single wall coil.  In the last 20 years they             
 haven't had any problems with people being poisoned from backflow             
 or anything resulting from failure of the coil.  These added                  
 costs would be passed on to the consumer.  The officials in                   
 Kodiak are capable of making the right decision for these codes.              
 Number 460                                                                    
 REPRESENTATIVE PORTER asked if double wall exchangers would take              
 more energy to produce the same amount of heat for the water.                 
 MR. BUTLER stated it would take 30 to 40 percent more energy to               
 produce the same amount of hot water with the double walled coil,             
 as opposed to the single wall coil.                                           
 Number 468                                                                    
 TOM STREIFEL, STREIFEL PLUMBING & HEATING testified via                       
 teleconference that it is not often that so many plumbers get                 
 together and agree they don't want to make money.  He stated                  
 they could charge more for the double wall coils but they just                
 don't work.  They are building systems so people can afford them.             
 This would cut efficiency.  The "feds" are already mandating a                
 limit to the number of BTUs that can be put into a house.  When               
 they have to figure heat loss, and they go over the limit by 10               
 percent, if they must use double wall coils, they won't get the               
 numbers to work.                                                              
 Number 481                                                                    
 CHAIRMAN KOTT asked what the standard life span of a single wall              
 coil was.                                                                     
 Number 489                                                                    
 MR. BUTLER answered he had been doing heating work for the past               
 20 years and there are a lot of single wall coils in existence                
 that preexist the 1964 tidal wave.                                            
 Number 490                                                                    
 president of Alaska Special Design Council, and Charter member of             
 Alaska Chapter of the International Association of Plumbing &                 
 Mechanical Officials, testified via teleconference in support of              
 HB 224.  He stated it had taken 12 years to upgrade the Plumbing              
 Code this last time.  He believes the professionals who deal with             
 codes on a daily basis should have the authority to come up with              
 the amendments and adopt the code in a timely manner.  He has sat             
 on the municipality of Anchorage Code Review Committee since                  
 1988, working to pass amendments needed to modify the code to                 
 meet local requirements unique to Anchorage.  There has been                  
 misleading information and misunderstandings.  Amtrol makes both              
 single and double wall heat exchangers that are hooked up to                  
 boilers as a separate item.  The double wall heat exchanger is                
 $8.00 cheaper.  In 1991, when the code went into effect, it                   
 caught many manufacturers off guard.  Over the past three years,              
 they have caught up and actually exceeded the number of double                
 wall exchangers originally anticipated.  In talking with a                    
 manufacturer's representative recently, 90 percent of the heat                
 exchangers he sells, dealing with potable water, are double wall              
 exchangers.  The 10 percent of single wall exchangers that are                
 sold are for steam and potable water on both side systems.  He                
 expounded on the flagging of boilers and the use of propylene                 
 glycol.  He stated that propylene glycol is toxic, the same as                
 alcohol is toxic.  It is not as toxic as ethylene glycol.  There              
 are various grades of propylene glycol.  The type listed by                   
 Representative James is not what you would purchase if you went               
 to (indisc.) and asked them for premixed propylene glycol.  He                
 stated propylene glycol is corrosive to piping.  Therefore,                   
 inhibitors are added to prevent corrosion.  These inhibitors are              
 not classified as nontoxic.  He said in bush communities, when a              
 boiler goes down and it is refilled, you are just as likely to                
 get Prestone installed into the system.  In remote areas where                
 home owners have modified systems or extremely corrosive water,               
 unlike Fairbanks or Kodiak, (indisc.).  Another misunderstanding              
 was that the exchangers are less efficient, using 30 to 40                    
 percent more energy.  The Amtrol double wall heat exchanger water             
 heater that works as a zone off of the boiler, takes no more                  
 energy to create the same amount of hot water than a single wall              
 unit.  He said double wall side arm heaters, which fit right into             
 the boilers, do not create as much hot water as single wall                   
 heaters, but they do not draw any more energy to heat that water.             
 He concluded if an amendment is needed, it should be adopted by               
 the Department of Labor when they go through the amendment                    
 process.  He does not feel there is uniform consensus throughout              
 the industry.  He knew of no engineer who would support single                
 wall heat exchangers over double wall exchangers due to the                   
 ethics and personal liability involved.  He feels that they                   
 should not be tied into technology based 15 to 20 years ago when              
 the industry itself is changing to support the double wall heat               
 Number 560                                                                    
 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG asked if the Anchorage Code Review was                
 like the Board Examiner of Appeals for the municipality of                    
 MR. HOLMES responded when new codes come out, they go to the                  
 professional and construction communities and ask individuals to              
 sit on the committee to go through the code and make                          
 recommendations for amendments.  He said there are separate                   
 committees for Fire, Mechanical, Structural, Plumbing and the                 
 Uniform Building Codes.                                                       
 Number 568                                                                    
 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG asked if, after the recommendations those             
 go to the assembly, or to the Board of Examiner Review.                       
 MR. HOLMES answered they go out for public comment; then                      
 eventually, they go to the assembly to be adopted by resolution.              
 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG asked if you could have additional public             
 hearings after issuing a first draft.                                         
 MR. HOLMES stated this was correct.                                           
 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG continued it then goes to the assembly                
 for approval, at which time a citizen can make a complaint or ask             
 for further amendments.                                                       
 MR. HOLMES said this was correct.                                             
 CHAIRMAN KOTT invited Representative Gene Therriault to sit at                
 the table.                                                                    
 LEE DESPAIN, DESPAIN PLUMBING & HEATING, testified via                        
 teleconference, that he had been in the plumbing business for 40              
 years.  He stated Mr. Holmes commented on the double wall heat                
 exchanger costing $8.00 less than the single exchanger.  However,             
 he forgot to say the installation alone would cost between $1000              
 to $1500 extra, because you're not able to use the coil that                  
 comes in most boilers they install in Fairbanks.  Mr. Holmes also             
 commented he knew of no engineers who would opt to install the                
 single wall exchangers over the double wall exchangers.  Mr.                  
 Despain said it was his understanding the Code Review Commission              
 has mechanical engineers on it and that the commission                        
 unanimously supported the use of single wall coils, as long as                
 they are installed with the provision that the city of Fairbanks              
 has for those applications.                                                   
 MR. DESPAIN continued by reading a prepared statement:  "It                   
 appears to me that the Department of Labor is making a run for                
 power.  You legislators can ill afford to delegate your                       
 responsibility for maintenance of the current applicable codes to             
 the Department of Labor.  These codes affect every resident in                
 this state with no exceptions either directly or indirectly.  If              
 you feel I've overstated my position, please feel free -- how                 
 much of the population of Alaska, regardless of age, creed, color             
 or national origin or religion, does not use water.  There are                
 several other codes in this legislation that also apply to                    
 Alaskans, in addition to the Plumbing Code.  This legislation                 
 will establish the Department of Labor as the Internal Revenue                
 Service of plumbing and other codes, Alaska-style.  If an appeal              
 is necessary after this piece of legislation, a person can go see             
 the next higher Department of Labor person.  It sounds like DOL               
 justice to me, or is that IRS justice?  I can hardly wait to see              
 how much money the Department of Labor can leverage from the                  
 legislature if this ill-conceived piece of legislation is                     
 approved.  Please, legislators, keep these codes within your                  
 jurisdiction and abolish this ill-conceived piece of legislation,             
 HB 224."                                                                      
 MR. DESPAIN stated there are presently exemptions to the code                 
 existing under state statute concerning code compliance.  He                  
 asked if this legislation would still allow for those exemptions,             
 which concern municipalities and some small rural communities.                
 Number 618                                                                    
 MR. PERKINS responded they amend the administrative sections of               
 the codes.  He didn't feel this would be a problem.                           
 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG pointed out he was asking if there is an              
 exemption from the codes when you have a code in a municipality?              
 MR. DESPAIN asked if that exemption disappears with this piece of             
 MR. PERKINS apologized for misunderstanding the questions, and he             
 added, "When exemptions are applied for and the department feels              
 they are in the best interest, then they are granted."                        
 MR. PERKINS clarified there are existing exceptions to the                    
 legislation allowing codes to be processed in Juneau at this                  
 time.  Those exemptions are for municipalities and certain rural              
 communities.  His question whether these exemptions still apply               
 "when DOL is made God instead of the state legislature?"  Will                
 they still be in effect?                                                      
 MR. PERKINS responded he didn't know why they wouldn't be.                    
 MR. DESPAIN reiterated there seemed to be poor information being              
 disseminated with regard to the double wall coil.  His concern is             
 that the double wall coil issue is insignificant in comparison                
 with establishing the Department of Labor as the group                        
 (indisc.--end of tape)                                                        
 TAPE 95-23, SIDE A,                                                           
 Number 000                                                                    
 MR. DESPAIN continued that they should continue to let the                    
 legislature do what they have been doing for years.                           
 Number 004                                                                    
 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG asked if they were to enact this                      
 legislation, whether the new Plumbing Code, as administered by                
 the Department of Labor, would be superior to the municipal codes             
 in Anchorage, Fairbanks and elsewhere.                                        
 MR. PERKINS stated at this time, the state's UPC is a minimum                 
 standard.  It says the municipalities may make the codes more                 
 stringent, but not less stringent.                                            
 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG asked if this was for all codes.                      
 MR. PERKINS stated he was only referring to the Plumbing Code.                
 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG asked if the state had adopted the                    
 Uniform Building Code.                                                        
 MR. PERKINS answered that to his knowledge, yes.                              
 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG queried whether they couldn't be less                 
 stringent than the UPC.                                                       
 MR. PERKINS said he could only refer to the Plumbing Code right               
 now.  The municipalities can be more stringent than the 1991                  
 code, but not less stringent.                                                 
 Number 059                                                                    
 testified via teleconference.  He commented they had only                     
 received notice of the teleconference the day prior, and would                
 have appreciated more notice.  He said the city has several                   
 concerns regarding HB 224.  The city of Fairbanks recognizes that             
 HB 224 was initiated by the Alaska Professional Design Council,               
 not the Department of Labor.  The city of Fairbanks also                      
 recognizes that the purpose of the bill is to adopt the state                 
 plumbing code by regulation.  They do not feel they will receive              
 a "fair shake" from the Department of Labor regarding the actual              
 regulatory process.  The city of Fairbanks has received little                
 cooperation from the DOL.  He pointed out that on page 2, line                
 11, the bill acknowledges only one code.  He said there are                   
 several nationally recognized plumbing codes that should be                   
 considered.  This code is the only code that prohibits single                 
 wall coils.  He said that on page 3, lines 17 and 18, the                     
 language is inappropriate.  He quoted, "best interest of the                  
 state," and then asked, what about the people, cities, and                    
 accountability?  The current language suggests an agenda which                
 recommends revision or deletion of lines 17 and 18, as noted.  He             
 referred the committee to page 17 in the handbook of the State                
 Constitution.  He asked why HB 224 was only referred to one                   
 committee, bypassing State Affairs.  He said the city of                      
 Fairbanks would consider supporting HB 224, provided the                      
 Fairbanks and Kodak amendment is included.  He asked the                      
 committee not to underestimate the city of Fairbanks' commitment              
 to the passage of this amendment.  This issue affects his office              
 every day.  The collective wisdom regarding plumbing and single               
 wall coils has been, or is, vested with the Department of Labor;              
 nor is it vested in communities with natural gas.  There has been             
 a concern that if they accept this amendment, what about all the              
 others?   Isn't this the governmental process?  In summary, he                
 stated the single wall coil issue will not go away.  In                       
 Fairbanks, they have a genuine problem with the currently overly              
 restrictive double wall heat exchanger state requirement.  If the             
 proposed Fairbanks and Kodiak amendment is not adopted, they will             
 work diligently for the defeat of HB 224.                                     
 CHAIRMAN KOTT thanked him for his testimony and assured him that              
 the state was under new management.  The committee does not                   
 arbitrarily teleconference every Labor & Commerce Committee                   
 meeting.  The request came late from either the bill sponsor or a             
 member of the public.  In response to being the only committee of             
 referral, he assured Mr. Shuttleworth that the Labor & Commerce               
 Committee would thoroughly evaluate HB 224.  He asked Mr.                     
 Shuttleworth for his phone number.                                            
 MR. SHUTTLEWORTH stated that it was 459-6725.                                 
 testified via teleconference.  He commented that Mr. Shuttleworth             
 was his supervisor.  He said:  "This limiting, even the                       
 consideration of any other plumbing code except the UPC, we all               
 know where that comes from."  He said they should consider the                
 best code for the state of Alaska, not one that is a private                  
 vested interest.  He commented on what Mr. Despain had said in                
 regards to changing the transfer of power by the legislature.  It             
 creates another IRS, EPA, and a totally out of control                        
 administration.  He said he could not believe anyone could think              
 the single wall/double wall coil is a safety hazard.  He was in               
 much more danger driving to the teleconference than he ever would             
 be drinking water from a single wall boiler.  He reiterated that              
 the Department of Labor is not a pleasant subject in Fairbanks.               
 He does not trust anything anyone says from the department.                   
 Number 226                                                                    
 BILL SAGER, CHANDLER PLUMBING & HEATING, testified via                        
 teleconference.  He said the ability of any department to be able             
 to change or adopt codes administratively is not in the best                  
 interest of the state.  He concurred with previous speakers                   
 regarding the double wall coil requirements as being unnecessary.             
 He urged that the requirement of the double wall coil be deleted              
 from whichever code is adopted.                                               
 CHAIRMAN KOTT asked if there was anyone else wishing to testify.              
 Hearing none, he closed public testimony and asked Representative             
 Therriault to join them.                                                      
 REPRESENTATIVE GENE THERRIAULT stated his staff had been in                   
 contact with a number of people in Fairbanks and that a few                   
 people were upset with the sponsor of the bill.  He said                      
 Representative Kohring had no ulterior motive in introducing the              
 bill; that he was a fellow member on the House Finance Committee,             
 and they could work these problems out.                                       
 Number 250                                                                    
 CHAIRMAN KOTT stated they had heard much testimony in the past                
 hours, along with feeling much heat.  He said they have learned a             
 lot and understand the issues related to HB 224.  He said that                
 these issues are substantial and need to be addressed in a                    
 subcommittee.  He appointed Representative Rokeberg as chair,                 
 along with Representative Elton and himself.                                  
 There being no further business to come before the House Labor &              
 Commerce Committee, Chairman Kott adjourned the meeting at 5:20               

Document Name Date/Time Subjects