Legislature(2019 - 2020)BELTZ 105 (TSBldg)

05/11/2019 10:30 AM Senate COMMUNITY & REGIONAL AFFAIRS

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Audio Topic
10:29:46 AM Start
10:30:23 AM HJR19
10:40:20 AM Adjourn
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
-- Please Note Time Change --
Moved CSHJR 19(TRB) Out of Committee
-- Public Testimony --
                    ALASKA STATE LEGISLATURE                                                                                  
    SENATE COMMUNITY AND REGIONAL AFFAIRS STANDING COMMITTEE                                                                  
                          May 11, 2019                                                                                          
                           10:29 a.m.                                                                                           
MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                               
Senator Click Bishop, Chair                                                                                                     
Senator Chris Birch, Vice Chair                                                                                                 
Senator Mia Costello                                                                                                            
Senator Lyman Hoffman                                                                                                           
Senator Elvi Gray-Jackson                                                                                                       
MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                                                                
All members present                                                                                                             
COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                                                                            
CS FOR HOUSE JOINT RESOLUTION NO. 19(TRB)                                                                                       
Urging  the  United States  Congress  to  fully fund  the  United                                                               
States Census Bureau for the  2020 Census; urging the governor to                                                               
prioritize  an accurate  count for  the 2020  Census; and  urging                                                               
local governments to establish local complete count commissions.                                                                
     - MOVED CSHJR 19(TRB) OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                     
PREVIOUS COMMITTEE ACTION                                                                                                     
BILL: HJR 19                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE: SUPPORT 2020 DECENNIAL CENSUS                                                                                      
SPONSOR(s): TRIBAL AFFAIRS                                                                                                      
04/24/19       (H)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
04/24/19       (H)       TRB, CRA                                                                                               
04/25/19       (H)       TRB AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
04/25/19       (H)       Moved CSHJR 19(TRB) Out of Committee                                                                   
04/25/19       (H)       MINUTE(TRB)                                                                                            
04/26/19       (H)       TRB RPT CS(TRB) 6DP                                                                                    
04/26/19       (H)       DP:   VANCE,   ORTIZ,   LINCOLN,   KOPP,                                                               
                         TALERICO, ZULKOSKY                                                                                     
05/07/19       (H)       CRA RPT CS(TRB) 5DP 2NR                                                                                
05/07/19       (H)       DP: CLAMAN, KREISS-TOMKINS, THOMPSON,                                                                  
                        DRUMMOND, HANNAN                                                                                        
05/07/19       (H)       NR: JACKSON, REVAK                                                                                     
05/07/19       (H)       CRA AT 8:00 AM BARNES 124                                                                              
05/07/19       (H)       Moved CSHJR 19(TRB) Out of Committee                                                                   
05/07/19       (H)       MINUTE(CRA)                                                                                            
05/09/19       (H)       TRANSMITTED TO (S)                                                                                     
05/09/19       (H)       VERSION: CSHJR 19(TRB)                                                                                 
05/10/19       (S)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
05/10/19       (S)       CRA                                                                                                    
05/11/19       (S)       CRA AT 10:30 AM BELTZ 105 (TSBldg)                                                                     
WITNESS REGISTER                                                                                                              
REPRESENTATIVE TIFFANY ZULKOSKY                                                                                                 
Alaska State Legislature                                                                                                        
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT: Sponsor of HJR 19.                                                                                        
DR. MARK WALSH, Vice President of Public Policy                                                                                 
Foraker Group;                                                                                                                  
Staff to the Alaska Census Working Group                                                                                        
Fairbanks, Alaska                                                                                                               
POSITION STATEMENT: Answered a question related to the 2020                                                                   
Census during the hearing on HJR 19.                                                                                            
ACTION NARRATIVE                                                                                                              
10:29:46 AM                                                                                                                   
CHAIR  CLICK  BISHOP called  the  Senate  Community and  Regional                                                             
Affairs  Standing  Committee  meeting  to  order  at  10:29  a.m.                                                               
Present at  the call  to order  were Senators  Hoffman, Costello,                                                               
Gray-Jackson, Birch, and Chair Bishop.                                                                                          
              HJR 19-SUPPORT 2020 DECENNIAL CENSUS                                                                          
10:30:23 AM                                                                                                                   
CHAIR BISHOP announced the consideration of House Joint                                                                         
Resolution 19 (HJR 19).                                                                                                         
[CSHJR 19(TRB) was before the committee.]                                                                                       
He noted that on February 26, 2019 the committee had an in-depth                                                                
overview of the 2020 Decennial Census.                                                                                          
10:31:00 AM                                                                                                                   
REPRESENTATIVE  TIFFANY   ZULKOSKY,  Alaska   State  Legislature,                                                               
Juneau, Alaska, sponsor of HJR  19, explained that the resolution                                                               
was sponsored  by the House  Special Committee on  Tribal Affairs                                                               
to urge  Congress to fully  fund the  U.S. Census Bureau  for the                                                               
2020  Census, encourage  the governor  to prioritize  an accurate                                                               
count  through  an  active complete-count  commission,  and  urge                                                               
local governments  to prepare for  and engage in the  2020 Census                                                               
through establishment of local complete-count commissions.                                                                      
She explained  that as required  in Article  1, Section 2  of the                                                               
U.S. Constitution,  the Census  aims to  count every  resident in                                                               
the  country at  the  location where  they live  as  a basis  for                                                               
sharing resources and determining political representation.                                                                     
She detailed that  the House Special Committee  on Tribal Affairs                                                               
had a hearing  on April 23, 2019 to talk  about the importance of                                                               
the 2020  Decennial Census and  what the Census means  to Alaska.                                                               
Depending on federally established  formulas tied to Census data,                                                               
Alaska receives $3.2 billion in  federal funding each year across                                                               
70 programs.  In a  time of state  and local  budget constraints,                                                               
maintaining  the  amount  of federal  investment  is  crucial  to                                                               
Alaska's economy, communities, and programs.                                                                                    
She  detailed  that  organizations across  public,  private,  and                                                               
nonprofit sectors  rely on funding allocations  determined by the                                                               
Census information illustrating the  importance of accurate count                                                               
data.  Every  uncounted Alaskan  results  in  an annual  loss  of                                                               
approximately $3,000  in federal  funding intended for  the state                                                               
over  a  10-year period.  The  loss  of  federal funding  for  an                                                               
uncounted  Alaskan results  in  reduced  essential services  like                                                               
health,  housing,  road  repairs,  and  education.  Undercounting                                                               
compounds  harm to  local  and state  budget  gaps, and  improper                                                               
enforcement of voting and civil  rights laws. Census data must be                                                               
accurate and  everything done to  ensure that Alaskans  are ready                                                               
to be counted.                                                                                                                  
She explained that in partnership  with the Alaska Census Working                                                               
Group, a  public-private partnership of local  organizations, the                                                               
House Special  Committee on  Tribal Affairs  sponsored HJR  19 to                                                               
highlight the  importance of the  Decennial Census. HJR  19 urges                                                               
the federal delegation to fully  fund the 2020 Census, encourages                                                               
the state  to prioritize outreach, and  invites local governments                                                               
to  engage  in  the  census count.  With  significant  geographic                                                               
language and  connectivity barriers,  Alaska is  one of  the most                                                               
difficult  states in  the  country to  count.  The difficulty  of                                                               
counting Alaskans  is even  greater in the  2020 Census  with the                                                               
U.S. Census  Bureau decision to  eliminate both  the notification                                                               
mailing to  post office boxes  and translation  support materials                                                               
into Alaska Native languages and  the transition to mostly online                                                               
REPRESENTATIVE  ZULKOSKY  said with  the  U.S.  Census Bureau  is                                                               
launching  its count  in  her  home district  in  Toksook Bay  on                                                               
January 21,  2020, and  it is vital  that Alaska's  leadership at                                                               
all  levels  of government  and  organizations  across the  state                                                               
prioritize an accurate count  before starting conversations about                                                               
how the data  will be used. Because the 2020  Decennial Census is                                                               
so  important to  every community,  citizen, and  organization in                                                               
Alaska, the  House Special Committee on  Tribal Affairs sponsored                                                               
the  introduction of  HJR  19  and unanimously  moved  it out  of                                                               
committee. The resolution also had  strong bi-partisan support in                                                               
passage on the House floor.                                                                                                     
10:35:20 AM                                                                                                                   
SENATOR  BIRCH asked  if there  has been  thought about  having a                                                               
lottery to  see who gets  to be the  first person counted  in the                                                               
United States in Toksook Bay.                                                                                                   
REPRESENTATIVE ZULKOSKY  replied that  she was  not sure  how the                                                               
decision will  be made. She said  her intent is to  be in Toksook                                                               
Bay when the 2020 Census count starts.                                                                                          
SENATOR BIRCH noted  that Alaska has a  large military population                                                               
where many retain  their residency while living  elsewhere due to                                                               
the  permanent fund  program. He  asked how  a person  is counted                                                               
when they are a resident in one state but live elsewhere.                                                                       
REPRESENTATIVE ZULKOSKY answered that  she believes that Alaskans                                                               
receive their census information at  their place of residence and                                                               
she did not know if their mail is forwarded.                                                                                    
CHAIR BISHOP asked Dr. Walsh if he had any information to add.                                                                  
10:37:45 AM                                                                                                                   
DR. MARK WALSH,  Vice President of Public  Policy, Foraker Group,                                                               
and Staff to the Alaska  Census Working Group, Fairbanks, Alaska,                                                               
replied  that the  experts have  told  him that  Alaska is  still                                                               
considered an overseas posting so  census material is sent to the                                                               
person's home post, meaning where  they came from. The likelihood                                                               
is many military  personnel will be counted in  their home state,                                                               
not Alaska.                                                                                                                     
CHAIR BISHOP opined that he would  like to see Senator Hoffman in                                                               
Toksook Bay to represent his home  district as well when the 2020                                                               
Census  starts. He  noted that  when he  was commissioner  of the                                                               
Alaska  Department   of  Labor  and  Workforce   Development,  he                                                               
attended the start  of the 2010 Census in Noorvik.  He noted that                                                               
Noorvik made the start of the  2010 Census into an event that was                                                               
rolled out in a big way.                                                                                                        
10:39:30 AM                                                                                                                   
CHAIR BISHOP closed public testimony on HJR 19.                                                                                 
10:39:43 AM                                                                                                                   
SENATOR  BIRCH moved  to  report CSHJR  19(TRB),  work order  31-                                                               
LS0738\S,  from  committee  with individual  recommendations  and                                                               
attached zero fiscal note.                                                                                                      
CHAIR BISHOP found no objection  and CSHJR 19(TRB) moved from the                                                               
Senate Community and Regional Affairs Standing Committee.                                                                       
10:40:20 AM                                                                                                                   
There being  no further  business to  come before  the committee,                                                               
Chair Bishop adjourned the Senate  Community and Regional Affairs                                                               
Standing Committee meeting at 10:40 a.m.                                                                                        

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
HJR019 version S.PDF SCRA 5/11/2019 8:30:00 AM
SCRA 5/11/2019 10:30:00 AM
HJR 19
HJR019 fiscal note.PDF SCRA 5/11/2019 8:30:00 AM
SCRA 5/11/2019 10:30:00 AM
HJR 19