Legislature(2005 - 2006)CAPITOL 17

04/14/2005 01:30 PM TRANSPORTATION


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* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled
= HB 266 VEHICLE WEIGHTS AND INSURANCE
Moved CSHB 266(TRA) Out of Committee
= HB 199 EXEMPT UHAULS FROM VEHICLE RENTAL TAX
Moved Out of Committee
= HB 209 AVIATION ADVISORY BOARD
Moved Out of Committee
= HB 239 POWERS/DUTIES DOTPF/TRANSPORTATION PLAN
Moved Out of Committee
                    ALASKA STATE LEGISLATURE                                                                                  
            HOUSE TRANSPORTATION STANDING COMMITTEE                                                                           
                         April 14, 2005                                                                                         
                           1:35 p.m.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Representative Jim Elkins, Co-Chair                                                                                             
Representative Vic Kohring                                                                                                      
Representative Mark Neuman                                                                                                      
Representative Bill Thomas                                                                                                      
Representative Mary Kapsner                                                                                                     
Representative Woodie Salmon                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Representative Carl Gatto, Co-Chair                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 199                                                                                                              
"An  Act   excluding  certain  trucks  from   the  definition  of                                                               
'passenger vehicle' for purposes  of the passenger vehicle rental                                                               
tax; and providing for an effective date."                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     - MOVED HB 199 OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 209                                                                                                              
"An Act  establishing the Aviation Advisory  Board; and providing                                                               
for an effective date."                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
     - MOVED HB 209 OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 239                                                                                                              
"An Act  relating to the powers  and duties of the  Department of                                                               
Transportation and  Public Facilities; repealing  the requirement                                                               
for   a  long-range   program   for   highway  construction   and                                                               
maintenance; and  repealing a requirement that  public facilities                                                               
comply  with  energy  standards  adopted  by  the  Department  of                                                               
Transportation and Public Facilities."                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
     - MOVED HB 239 OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 266                                                                                                              
"An  Act relating  to  offenses and  penalties  for violation  of                                                               
vehicle weight  limitations; prohibiting  the use of  a violation                                                               
of a  vehicle weight limitation  for certain  personal automobile                                                               
insurance actions; amending Rule 43.6, Alaska Rules of                                                                          
Administration; and providing for an effective date."                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
     - MOVED CSHB266 (TRA) OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
PREVIOUS COMMITTEE ACTION                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
BILL: HB 199                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE: EXEMPT UHAULS FROM VEHICLE RENTAL TAX                                                                              
SPONSOR(s): REPRESENTATIVE(s) KOTT                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
03/04/05       (H)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
03/04/05       (H)       TRA, STA, FIN                                                                                          
03/07/05       (H)       STA REFERRAL REMOVED                                                                                   
04/12/05       (H)       TRA AT 1:30 PM CAPITOL 17                                                                              
04/12/05       (H)       Scheduled But Not Heard                                                                                
04/14/05       (H)       TRA AT 1:30 PM CAPITOL 17                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
BILL: HB 209                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE: AVIATION ADVISORY BOARD                                                                                            
SPONSOR(s): RULES BY REQUEST OF THE GOVERNOR                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
03/07/05       (H)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
03/07/05       (H)       CRA, TRA, FIN                                                                                          
03/23/05       (H)       CRA REFERRAL WAIVED                                                                                    
04/12/05       (H)       TRA AT 1:30 PM CAPITOL 17                                                                              
04/12/05       (H)       Scheduled But Not Heard                                                                                
04/14/05       (H)       TRA AT 1:30 PM CAPITOL 17                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
BILL: HB 239                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE: POWERS/DUTIES DOTPF/TRANSPORTATION PLAN                                                                            
SPONSOR(s): TRANSPORTATION BY REQUEST                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
03/30/05       (H)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
03/30/05       (H)       TRA, FIN                                                                                               
04/12/05       (H)       TRA AT 1:30 PM CAPITOL 17                                                                              
04/12/05       (H)       Scheduled But Not Heard                                                                                
04/14/05       (H)       TRA AT 1:30 PM CAPITOL 17                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
BILL: HB 266                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE: VEHICLE WEIGHTS AND INSURANCE                                                                                      
SPONSOR(s): TRANSPORTATION                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
04/08/05       (H)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
04/08/05       (H)       TRA, JUD, FIN                                                                                          
04/12/05       (H)       TRA AT 1:30 PM CAPITOL 17                                                                              
04/12/05       (H)       Failed To Move Out Of Committee                                                                        
04/12/05       (H)       MINUTE(TRA)                                                                                            
04/14/05       (H)       TRA AT 1:30 PM CAPITOL 17                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
WITNESS REGISTER                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
MICHAEL O'HARE, Staff                                                                                                           
to Representative Pete Kott                                                                                                     
Alaska State Legislature                                                                                                        
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT: Presented HB 199 on behalf of Representative                                                                
Kott, sponsor.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
JOHN NORRIS, President                                                                                                          
U-Haul Company of Alaska                                                                                                        
Anchorage, Alaska                                                                                                               
POSITION STATEMENT: Testified in support of HB 199.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
JOHANNA BALES, Excise Audit Manager                                                                                             
Tax Division                                                                                                                    
Department of Revenue                                                                                                           
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT: Answered questions on HB 199.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
NONA WILSON, Legislative Liaison                                                                                                
Department of Transportation & Public Facilities                                                                                
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT: Testified in support of HB 209.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
KIP KNUDSON, Deputy Commissioner of Aviation                                                                                    
Department of Transportation & Public Facilities                                                                                
Anchorage, Alaska                                                                                                               
POSITION STATEMENT: Testified in support of HB 209.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
TOM GEORGE                                                                                                                      
Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association                                                                                          
Fairbanks, Alaska                                                                                                               
POSITION STATEMENT: Testified in support of HB 209.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
JEFF OTTESEN, Director                                                                                                          
Division of Program Development                                                                                                 
Department of Transportation & Public Facilities                                                                                
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT: Testified in favor of HB 239.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
MICHAEL BELL                                                                                                                    
Alaska Trucking Association                                                                                                     
Anchorage, Alaska                                                                                                               
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in  opposition to  some provisions                                                               
of HB 266.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
PAUL FUHS                                                                                                                       
Horizon Lines                                                                                                                   
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT: Testified in support of HB 266.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
ACTION NARRATIVE                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  JIM ELKINS  called  the  House Transportation  Standing                                                             
Committee  meeting  to  order at  1:35:01  PM.    Representatives                                                             
Thomas, Kapsner, Neuman,  and Elkins were present at  the call to                                                               
order.   Representatives  Kohring  and Salmon  arrived while  the                                                               
meeting was in progress.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
HB 199-EXEMPT UHAULS FROM VEHICLE RENTAL TAX                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR ELKINS announced that the  first order of business would                                                               
be HOUSE BILL NO. 199   "An Act excluding certain trucks from the                                                               
definition of  'passenger vehicle' for purposes  of the passenger                                                               
vehicle rental tax; and providing for an effective date."                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
MICHAEL O'HARE,  Staff to Representative Pete  Kott, Alaska State                                                               
Legislature, said in  2003 the legislature passed  House Bill 271                                                               
to  generate  revenue  from  visitors who  rent  vehicles.    One                                                               
unintended consequence was the taxation  of rental trucks used to                                                               
haul rental goods  and household goods, he added.   The bill will                                                               
exclude these trucks from the rental tax.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
1:37:52 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
JOHN  NORRIS, President,  U-Haul  Company  of Alaska,  Anchorage,                                                               
said the original  bill was intended as a tourism  tax for rental                                                               
passenger  vehicles.   He  said  he  was  surprised when  he  was                                                               
contacted by  the Department of Revenue.   He noted that  the tax                                                               
has  impacted his  company's business,  because  17 percent  less                                                               
people are using  his service.  For the month  of March, he said,                                                               
he saw a  29 percent drop in customers.   He noted that consumers                                                               
have  other means  of moving  that  are not  taxed.   A bill  was                                                               
passed in 2004 to exempt taxis,  and HB 199 will provide the same                                                               
relief for trucks, he stated.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
1:41:25 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. NORRIS  said 95 percent  of U-haul's customers  are Alaskans.                                                               
The Alaska Trucking Association and  the Truck Rental and Leasing                                                               
Association support  the legislation,  he added.   Last  year was                                                               
the first  year that his  business saw a  decrease in the  use of                                                               
rental trucks.  He said his  customers have told him that the tax                                                               
is a significant hardship.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE NEUMAN noted  that many U-hauls work  out of small                                                               
businesses in Alaska.   He said he rents U-hauls  to deliver some                                                               
of his furniture.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
1:44:20 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
JOHANNA BALES, Excise Audit Manager,  Tax Division, Department of                                                               
Revenue, pointed  out that HB  199 impacts five  taxpayers within                                                               
the  state, and  the estimate  in  lost revenue  is $275,000  per                                                               
year.                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR ELKINS asked  what the five people are  losing in income                                                               
because of the tax.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
1:46:01 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS. BALES said the department has no way to estimate that.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
1:46:35 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KOHRING  moved to report  HB 199 out  of committee                                                               
with  individual  recommendations  and  the  accompanying  fiscal                                                               
notes.                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
There  being   no  objection,  HB   199  moved  from   the  House                                                               
Transportation Standing Committee.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
1:47:15 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
HB 209-AVIATION ADVISORY BOARD                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR ELKINS announced  that the next order  of business would                                                               
be  HOUSE  BILL  NO.  209   "An  Act  establishing  the  Aviation                                                               
Advisory Board; and providing for an effective date."                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
NONA WILSON, Legislative Liaison,  Department of Transportation &                                                               
Public Facilities, said  HB 209 is critical  to Alaska's aviation                                                               
infrastructure and  aviation industry.  The  board was originally                                                               
created  in 2003  by Governor  Murkowski  with an  administrative                                                               
order, and it was renewed in  2004.  This bill would continue the                                                               
existence  of  the  board without  the  need  for  administrative                                                               
renewals.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
1:49:19 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS. WILSON  said Anchorage and Fairbanks  are international hubs,                                                               
and there  are 258 rural airports  in Alaska.  The  state has the                                                               
largest  seaplane base  in the  world,  six times  the number  of                                                               
pilots  per capita,  and  16  times the  number  of aircraft  per                                                               
capita than  the rest of the  country.  The Anchorage  airport is                                                               
the  largest  cargo  airport  in North  America.    The  Aviation                                                               
Advisory Board advises the  commissioner and facilitates dialogue                                                               
between  the  state  and  the aviation  industry  on  matters  of                                                               
policy,   management,  operations,   and  safety.     The   board                                                               
represents a  broad cross-section  of Alaska's  aviation industry                                                               
with a valuable combination of expertise, she concluded.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
1:50:56 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SALMON asked about the purpose of the board.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MS. WILSON repeated her description of the board's purpose.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
1:51:51 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SALMON asked if it makes aviation regulations.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
MS.  WILSON  said the  board  would  advise the  commissioner  on                                                               
regulations.  She said the  board is the administration's attempt                                                               
at   fair   and   balanced  representation   of   everybody   who                                                               
participates in statewide aviation.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
KIP  KNUDSON,  Deputy  Commissioner of  Aviation,  Department  of                                                               
Transportation &  Public Facilities,  said the advisory  board is                                                               
critical, and  the department  has already gotten  a lot  of sage                                                               
advice from it.  It should be a permanent structure, he said.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KAPSNER asked if it already exists.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
MS. WILSON said it does, and HB 209 makes it permanent.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KAPSNER asked who  represents air carriers serving                                                               
rural areas.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. KNUDSON  said it  was someone from  Taquan Air  in Ketchikan,                                                               
Alaska.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE NEUMAN  said most boards  come up for  review, and                                                               
asked why there wasn't a sunset date for this board.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MS.  WILSON said  the  department  would like  to  see the  board                                                               
continued, even as members and administrations change.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
1:55:51 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR.  KNUDSON added  that the  board was  recommended by  aviation                                                               
interests who didn't  have adequate avenues to  advise the state.                                                               
It is coming from the consumers, companies, and pilots, he said.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE NEUMAN  said he thought  there were  always sunset                                                               
clauses  because things  change,  and the  public  likes to  take                                                               
another look at government decisions.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KAPSNER asked about term lengths.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
MS.  WILSON  said  she thought  they  were  staggered  three-year                                                               
terms, with eleven members.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  THOMAS  said  he  likes  the  idea  of  it  being                                                               
permanent, as many boards are.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
1:58:52 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE   SALMON   asked   about  the   member   from   an                                                               
unorganized borough.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MR. KNUDSON  said that seat  is occupied by someone  from Bettles                                                               
Air Service.   The intent is to make sure  unorganized areas were                                                               
covered on the board, he explained.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  NEUMAN  said he  does  not  have a  problem  with                                                               
permanence.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
2:00:15 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
TOM  GEORGE,  Aircraft  Owners  and  Pilots  Association  (AOPA),                                                               
Fairbanks,  said  AOPA  has  4,600  members  in  Alaska,  and  it                                                               
supports  HB 209.    He said  aviation plays  a  crucial role  in                                                               
Alaska, and there needs to be  a way for the industry to dialogue                                                               
with  the  department as  it  sets  policy and  makes  management                                                               
decisions.    The board  members  represent  broad interests  and                                                               
geographic regions, he stated.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
2:01:36 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KAPSNER  moved to report  HB 209 out  of committee                                                               
with  individual  recommendations  and  the  accompanying  fiscal                                                               
notes.                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
There being  no objection,  HB 209  was passed  out of  the House                                                               
Transportation Standing Committee.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
2:02:06 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
HB 239-POWERS/DUTIES DOTPF/TRANSPORTATION PLAN                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR ELKINS announced  that the next order  of business would                                                               
be HOUSE BILL  NO. 239 "An Act relating to  the powers and duties                                                               
of  the  Department  of  Transportation  and  Public  Facilities;                                                               
repealing the  requirement for a  long-range program  for highway                                                               
construction and  maintenance; and  repealing a  requirement that                                                               
public  facilities comply  with energy  standards adopted  by the                                                               
Department of Transportation and Public Facilities."                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
JEFF   OTTESEN,  Director,   Division  of   Program  Development,                                                               
Department  of Transportation  &  Public  Facilities (DOT),  said                                                               
this almost  passed the legislature last  year.  He said  it is a                                                               
simple, housecleaning bill with one  important provision.  It was                                                               
driven home by a lawsuit against  the state for failing to have a                                                               
full cost benefit  analysis before a rural  project went forward.                                                               
He said any project can be litigated unless HB 239 passes.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
MR. OTTESEN  said that the  bill takes  care of things  that have                                                               
changed over time.  He said  DOT receives money from sources that                                                               
are expected  to be  granted to  local government  or nonprofits,                                                               
and Section 1  gives the department legal authority  to issue the                                                               
grants.   The  heart of  the bill  is Section  3, he  said.   The                                                               
merging of DOT and public  works was an administrative order that                                                               
became  statute without  a legislative  vote, he  explained.   An                                                               
annual transportation  plan for  all modes of  transportation was                                                               
required at that time,  but DOT can't afford to do  that now.  He                                                               
said it  also calls  for a  cost and  benefit analysis  for every                                                               
project without considering  the size of the project.   The court                                                               
ruling  and lawsuit  requires the  cost benefit  study, so  every                                                               
local government who nominates a  project for aviation, highways,                                                               
or transit will  have to do the analysis.   "That's not something                                                               
we  want them  to do;  that's something  we're doing  because the                                                               
court  has already  ruled that  the statute  requires this."   He                                                               
said there are  two letters from local  government supporting the                                                               
bill.                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
2:07:40 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE NEUMAN  moved to  report HB  239 out  of committee                                                               
with  individual recommendations  and accompanying  fiscal notes.                                                               
There being  no objection,  HB 239  was passed  out of  the House                                                               
Transportation Standing Committee.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
HB 266-VEHICLE WEIGHTS AND INSURANCE                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR ELKINS asked  if there was any further  business to come                                                               
before the committee.   Upon the following  motion, the committee                                                               
turned its attention  to HOUSE BILL NO. 266, "An  Act relating to                                                               
offenses   and  penalties   for  violation   of  vehicle   weight                                                               
limitations;  prohibiting the  use of  a violation  of a  vehicle                                                               
weight  limitation  for  certain  personal  automobile  insurance                                                               
actions; amending Rule 43.6, Alaska  Rules of Administration; and                                                               
providing for an effective date."                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  THOMAS  moved  that  the  committee  rescind  its                                                               
action  in failing  to  report CSHB  266(TRA)  from committee  on                                                               
April  12, 2005.   There  being no  objection, CSHB  266(TRA) was                                                               
before the committee.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
MICHAEL  BELL,  Alaska  Trucking   Association  (ATA),  said  ATA                                                               
supports the insurance provision of HB  266.  He said ATA doesn't                                                               
support  the  large increase  in  fines  in  Section 2,  but  the                                                               
proposal would be less objectionable  "if confined to the highest                                                               
fees to  the most significant  violators."  He stated  that 8,000                                                               
pounds  or  less  of overweight  have  insignificant  impacts  on                                                               
highways  and may  result from  unintentional errors  or lack  of                                                               
scales.  The  fees place a larger burden on  the small companies,                                                               
he contended.   Mr. Bell said  ATA does not support  the shift of                                                               
responsibility  from  the  motor  carriers to  the  shippers  for                                                               
violations caused  by the bill  of lading, because  carriers have                                                               
the right  to seek  restitution from their  customers if  they so                                                               
choose.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
2:11:57 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. BELL said for the provision  dealing with the number of fines                                                               
related  to the  number of  drivers, ATA  suggests an  additional                                                               
tier for up to 60 violations  for the large companies that employ                                                               
more than 200 drivers.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
2:13:09 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  NEUMAN  said  he  wished the  committee  had  the                                                               
recommendations before the  meeting.  He said he  agrees with Mr.                                                               
Bell on  the fines.   He said  8,000 pounds won't  do significant                                                               
damage.   "If we  just had better  enforcement, we  wouldn't need                                                               
higher  fines," he  said.   He suggested  including ATA's  letter                                                               
when the bill leaves committee.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
2:14:34 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KOHRING said he is not clear on ATA's position.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
MR. BELL said ATA supports some  of the intentions of HB 266, but                                                               
it has  some concerns with the  increase in fees.   He added that                                                               
ATA would  like an  amendment to make  8,000 pounds  the baseline                                                               
and  to increase  fines on  escalating over  weights.   He agrees                                                               
that  extra  weight is  detrimental  to  roads,  but it  is  very                                                               
difficult to be precise because of mud and snow.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KOHRING asked for ATA's proposed amendment.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  ELKINS  suggested  that  the  House  Finance  Committee                                                               
address the fee structure.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KOHRING  said he  has faith  in the  House Finance                                                               
Committee, but  he is uncomfortable  with the  high fees.   Can a                                                               
little excavating  business hauling a  dozier one block  down the                                                               
road be cited? he asked.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
2:17:49 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
NONA WILSON, Legislative Liaison,  Department of Transportation &                                                               
Public Facilities, said there are temporary permits available.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
AVES THOMPSON,  Director, Division  of Measurement  Standards and                                                               
Commercial  Vehicle Enforcement,  Department of  Transportation &                                                               
Public Facilities,  said permits are available,  and without one,                                                               
the truck would be in violation.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
2:18:42 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE NEUMAN asked the time and cost for a permit.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MR. THOMPSON  said a permit can  be obtained within the  same day                                                               
unless there is an extraordinary load, and fees are $50 to $75.                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
2:19:27 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
BARBARA HUFF  TUCKNESS, Director of Governmental  and Legislative                                                               
Affairs for Teamsters Local 959,  said she represents a few truck                                                               
drivers, and  the Teamsters strongly  support HB  266.  It  is an                                                               
issue  of road  damage  and safety,  and whether  it  is a  small                                                               
business  or large,  the  rules  are the  rules.   Running  5,000                                                               
pounds over weight is significant,  and it is the motoring public                                                               
that  is impacted,  she  said.   The  current  fee structure  has                                                               
become  just  another cost  of  business,  she noted,  and  truck                                                               
drivers have a good idea if the truck is 2,000 pounds over.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
2:21:59 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS. TUCKNESS said  the proposed fines will not  impact anyone not                                                               
running overweight.   Small or large,  everyone should understand                                                               
the rules  of the road.   There  is a timely  permitting process,                                                               
she concluded.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
2:24:47 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KOHRING  said  safety  is  important  but  he  is                                                               
nervous about  adopting legislation  that increases fees  to this                                                               
extent.  He  asked if there is a correlation  with fee structures                                                               
and overweight offences.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
MS. TUCKNESS  said the  teamsters believe  the bill  would reduce                                                               
violations.  It is important to send the message, she said.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
2:26:44 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KOHRING said  he won't oppose HB 266,  but he will                                                               
look  at what  comes out  of the  House Finance  Committee before                                                               
supporting it on the floor.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE NEUMAN  said 2,000  pounds is hard  to distinguish                                                               
on a vehicle that runs 200,000 pounds.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE THOMAS  said a  driver of a  truck that  is 20,000                                                               
pounds over weight should lose his or her license.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
MS.   TUCKNESS  said   she   supports   increasing  the   state's                                                               
enforcement budget.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE NEUMAN said  HB 266 does nothing to  the owners of                                                               
the company.   Truck drivers may  be making $15 hour,  and may be                                                               
threatened with their  job if they don't haul what  they are told                                                               
to do.                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR ELKINS said that is not true.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
2:29:28 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
PAUL FUHS, Horizon Lines, Anchorage,  said the ticket goes to the                                                               
driver who turns  it over to the owner.   The driver doesn't have                                                               
to pay  the ticket, he said.   Some companies may  be overloading                                                               
as  a practice,  putting the  drivers and  public at  risk.   The                                                               
shipper or  loader who lies  can be  held liable.   Generally the                                                               
driver is not the person who gets a sanction, he said.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
2:31:20 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. FUHS  said trucks bend  the pavement when  overloaded, enough                                                               
to break  the water  seal.   Running overweight  at a  slow speed                                                               
will prevent such damage.  He  gave an example of a family killed                                                               
by an overloaded gravel truck.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
2:32:44 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  THOMAS  moved  to  report CSHB  266(TRA)  out  of                                                               
committee  with individual  recommendations and  the accompanying                                                               
fiscal  notes.   There  being  no  objection, CSHB  266(TRA)  was                                                               
reported out of the House Transportation Standing Committee.                                                                    
ADJOURNMENT                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
There being no  further business before the  committee, the House                                                               
Transportation Standing  Committee meeting was adjourned  at 2:33                                                             
PM                                                                                                                            

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