Legislature(2017 - 2018)GRUENBERG 120

01/15/2018 03:30 PM RULES

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Audio Topic
04:14:19 PM Start
04:15:15 PM Executive Session
06:32:54 PM Consideration of a Report on a Personnel Matter
06:41:31 PM Adjourn
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
EXECUTIVE SESSION
+ To consider a report on a personnel matter TELECONFERENCED
-- Testimony <Invitation Only> --
                    ALASKA STATE LEGISLATURE                                                                                  
                 HOUSE RULES STANDING COMMITTEE                                                                               
                        January 15, 2018                                                                                        
                           4:14 p.m.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Representative Gabrielle LeDoux, Chair                                                                                          
Representative Matt Claman, Vice Chair                                                                                          
Representative Sam Kito                                                                                                         
Representative Louise Stutes                                                                                                    
Representative Mike Chenault                                                                                                    
Representative Lora Reinbold                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Representative David Eastman                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
OTHER LEGISLATORS PRESENT                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Representative Bryce Edgmon                                                                                                     
Representative DeLena Johnson                                                                                                   
Representative Dan Ortiz                                                                                                        
Representative Paul Seaton                                                                                                      
Representative Chris Tuck                                                                                                       
Representative David Guttenberg                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Senator Kevin Meyer                                                                                                             
Senator Peter Micciche                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
EXECUTIVE SESSION                                                                                                               
CONSIDERATION OF A REPORT ON A PERSONNEL MATTER                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
PREVIOUS COMMITTEE ACTION                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
No previous action to record                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
WITNESS REGISTER                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
SKIFF LOBAUGH, Human Resource Manager                                                                                           
Personnel                                                                                                                       
Legislative Affairs Agency                                                                                                      
Alaska State Legislature                                                                                                        
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:   Answered questions during  consideration of                                                             
a report on a personnel matter.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
ACTION NARRATIVE                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
4:14:19 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR GABRIELLE LEDOUX called the  House Rules Standing Committee                                                             
meeting to  order at 4:14  p.m.  Representatives  Claman, Stutes,                                                               
Kito, Chenault, Reinbold, and LeDoux  were present at the call to                                                               
order.                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
^EXECUTIVE SESSION                                                                                                              
                       EXECUTIVE SESSION                                                                                    
                                                                                                                              
4:15:15 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR LEDOUX announced that the  first order of business would be                                                               
an executive session.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
4:15:23 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE CLAMAN  moved to  go into executive  session under                                                               
Uniform  Rule  22(b)(2),  discussion  of subjects  that  tend  to                                                               
prejudice the reputation  and character of a  person, and Uniform                                                               
Rule  22(b)(3),  discussion  of  a  matter that  may  by  law  be                                                               
required  to  be  confidential.   He  asked  that  the  following                                                               
individuals remain  in the  room:   Doug Gardner;  Megan Wallace;                                                               
Skiff  Lobaugh; House  Rules  Standing  Committee aide,  Courtney                                                               
Enright; any  members of  the House  of Representatives;  and any                                                               
invited  testimony, as  needed.   There being  no objection,  the                                                               
House Rules Standing Committee entered into executive session.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
4:16:02 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
The committee  took an at-ease  from 4:16  p.m. to 6:31  p.m. for                                                               
the purpose of an executive session.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
6:31:57 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR LEDOUX  called the House  Rules Standing Committee  back to                                                               
order.   Present at the  call back to order  were Representatives                                                               
Claman, Stutes, Kito, Chenault, Reinbold, and LeDoux.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
^CONSIDERATION OF A REPORT ON A PERSONNEL MATTER                                                                                
         CONSIDERATION OF A REPORT ON A PERONNEL MATTER                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
6:32:54 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR LEDOUX announced that the  final order of business would be                                                               
the consideration of a report on a personnel matter.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
6:32:57 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE CLAMAN moved and  asked unanimous consent that the                                                               
House  Rules  Standing  Committee  release  the  human  resources                                                               
investigative  report  for  Representative Dean  Westlake,  dated                                                               
December 20, 2017.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
6:33:09 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR LEDOUX  objected for  purposes of  discussion.   She stated                                                               
support  for  the  release  of the  report,  but  emphasized  the                                                               
importance of  balancing the interest  in public  disclosure with                                                               
the interest  in confidential human  resource matters.   She said                                                               
the  committee  recognizes  that   one  complainant  has  already                                                               
published a  complaint.   She said the  committee has  weighed in                                                               
favor of disclosure to show  that the House treats all harassment                                                               
claims seriously  and has zero  tolerance for  sexual harassment.                                                               
Further, she  clarified, "By releasing  this report, we  are also                                                               
not retaliating against any complainant in any manner."                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
6:34:38 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE REINBOLD said she  thinks the executive session on                                                               
the issue  addressed questions  that had to  be answered  and was                                                               
conducted in a  respectful manner.  She expressed  her support of                                                               
the release  of the  report, because she  thinks that  the public                                                               
wants  to know  both  sides of  the House  are  taking the  issue                                                               
seriously,  not only  through words,  but  also by  action.   She                                                               
concluded by  offering gratitude  for the  ability to  assess the                                                               
issue  and make  the  decision  to release  [the  report] to  the                                                               
public,  while  respecting  privacy and  recognizing  the  public                                                               
process and that [the legislature] is under "deeper scrutiny."                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
6:35:41 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR LEDOUX  asked Representative Claman if  the motion included                                                               
an accompanying letter  [submitted by a complainant]  to go along                                                               
with the release of the report.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
6:35:58 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  CLAMAN noted  that  the  complainant's March  13,                                                               
2017, letter is available on line,  so the committee does need to                                                               
release it;  however, he recommended  that whoever  [releases the                                                               
report] "makes clear where to find the letter on line."                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
6:36:28 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR LEDOUX removed  her objection to the motion  to release the                                                               
human   resources   investigative   report   for   Representative                                                               
Westlake, dated December 20, 2017.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  LEDOUX  invited  Skiff Lobaugh  to  answer  any  committee                                                               
questions.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
6:37:05 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE CHENAULT upon confirmation  from Chair LeDoux that                                                               
she had  removed her  objection, reminded  Chair LeDoux  that the                                                               
motion remained before the committee.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
6:37:24 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  LEDOUX,  after  ascertaining  that there  was  no  further                                                               
objection, announced that the report was released to the public.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
6:38:02 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE CLAMAN  asked Mr.  Lobaugh if  he had  spoken with                                                               
Speaker of the House, Bryce  Edgmon, as part of the investigation                                                               
"about these events."                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
6:38:17 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
SKIFF  LOBAUGH, Human  Resource  Manager, Personnel,  Legislative                                                               
Affairs  Agency,  Alaska State  Legislature,  answered  yes.   In                                                               
response to follow-up questions, he  confirmed he also had spoken                                                               
with  Representative  Tuck  but  not  to  Representative  LeDoux,                                                               
because "she never came up as  witness or anything to do with the                                                               
investigation."                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE   CLAMAN    asked,   "In   their    actions,   did                                                               
Representative   Edgmon  and   Representative  Tuck   follow  the                                                               
legislature's sexual harassment policies  and procedures in their                                                               
... actions in response to these events?"                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
MR. LOBAUGH answered, "They did  follow the Legislative Council's                                                               
policy on sexual and other workplace harassment."                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
6:39:18 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE REINBOLD  offered her understanding that  there is                                                               
no mandatory  policy of reporting  as exists in the  U.S. Senate;                                                               
therefore, she  asked, "Whose responsibility is  it to [escalate]                                                               
a situation and what warrants that?"                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MR.  LOBAUGH answered  that "the  individual  who receives  these                                                               
case-by-case complaints would need to review and look at that."                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE REINBOLD  said she  knows the policy  is currently                                                               
being updated  but asked what  the current options  are regarding                                                               
to whom a person [experiencing harassment] can report.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
MR. LOBAUGH  answered that under  current policy, the  person can                                                               
report  to   his/her:    supervisor;  designated   staff  of  the                                                               
presiding  officer;  designated staff  in  the  Rules Office;  or                                                               
designated  staff in  the office  of  the co-chair  of the  House                                                               
Finance Standing Committee.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  REINBOLD asked,  "Is  everybody  in the  building                                                               
aware of who those individuals are?"                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MR. LOBAUGH answered, "We can do a  better job."  To that end, he                                                               
related that  he is  currently working  on a  web site  that will                                                               
provide the  specific names of  contacts."  He indicated  this is                                                               
an attempt to offer clearer information.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
6:41:31 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
ADJOURNMENT                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
There being no  further business before the  committee, the House                                                               
Rules Standing Committee meeting was adjourned at 6:42 p.m.                                                                     

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
Westlake Final Report.pdf HRLS 1/15/2018 3:30:00 PM
Westlake Final Report
Letter of Complaint .pdf HRLS 1/15/2018 3:30:00 PM
Westlake Complaint