Legislature(1995 - 1996)

03/19/1996 03:38 PM Senate STA

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
               SENATE STATE AFFAIRS COMMITTEE                                
                         March 19, 1996                                        
                           3:38 p.m.                                           
  MEMBERS PRESENT                                                              
 Senator Bert Sharp, Chairman                                                  
 Senator Randy Phillips, Vice-Chairman                                         
 Senator Loren Leman                                                           
 Senator Jim Duncan                                                            
 Senator Dave Donley                                                           
  COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                           
 SENATE BILL NO. 304                                                           
 "An Act relating to eligibility for the longevity bonus program;              
 and providing for an effective date."                                         
 CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 179(FSH)                                                
 "An Act relating to the commissioner of education and the                     
 commissioner of fish and game; and providing for an effective                 
 SENATE BILL NO. 191                                                           
 "An Act relating to election campaigns, election campaign                     
 financing, the oversight and regulation of election campaigns by              
 the Alaska Public Offices Commission, the activities of lobbyists             
 that relate to election campaigns, and the definitions of offenses            
 of campaign misconduct; and providing for an effective date."                 
 SB 273 (NATIVE HANDICRAFTS & INSTATE PRODUCTS) was scheduled, but             
 not taken up on this date.                                                    
 SB 141 (LEGISLATIVE ETHICS) was scheduled, but not taken up on this           
 SB 275 (STATE PROCUREMENT PRACTICES & PROCEDURES) was scheduled,              
 but not taken up on this date.                                                
  PREVIOUS SENATE COMMITTEE ACTION                                             
 SB 304 - No previous senate committee action.                                 
 HB 179 - No previous senate committee action.                                 
 SB 191 - See State Affairs minutes dated 1/25/96 and 3/12/96.                 
  WITNESS REGISTER                                                             
 Joshua Donaldson, Staff                                                       
 Representative Gene Therriault                                                
 State Capitol, Juneau, AK 99801-1182¶(907)465-4797                            
   POSITION STATEMENT: prime sponsor of HB 179                                 
 Chrystal Smith, Legal Administrator                                           
 Office of the Attorney General                                                
 Department of Law                                                             
 P.O. Box 110300, Juneau, AK 99811-0300¶(907)465-3600                          
   POSITION STATEMENT: supports HB 179                                         
 Jack Chenoweth, Attorney                                                      
 Legislative Legal and Research Services                                       
 130 Seward St., Ste. 409, Juneau, AK 99801-2105¶(907)465-2450                 
   POSITION STATEMENT: testified on SB 191                                     
 Representative David Finkelstein                                              
 State Capitol, Juneau, AK 99801-1182¶(907)465-2435                            
   POSITION STATEMENT: testified on SB 191                                     
 Brooke Miles                                                                  
 Regulation of Lobbying                                                        
 Alaska Public Offices Commission                                              
 P.O. Box 110222, Juneau, AK 99811-0222¶(907)465-4864                          
   POSITION STATEMENT: testified on SB 191                                     
  ACTION NARRATIVE                                                             
 TAPE 96-21, SIDE A                                                            
 Number 001                                                                    
 CHAIRMAN SHARP called the Senate State Affairs Committee to order             
 at 3:38 p.m.  The chairman stated that several bills have been                
 pulled from the schedule, one at the request of the sponsor.                  
            SB 304 ELIGIBILITY FOR LONGEVITY BONUS                           
 Number 025                                                                    
 CHAIRMAN SHARP brought up SB 304 as the first order of business               
 before the Senate State Affairs Committee.  He stated that SB 304             
 is a committee bill that incorporates a section that was in SB 217.           
 That section received unanimous support from senior citizens.  It             
 would establish that a cumulative total absence of 180 days from              
 the state would result in ineligibility to receive longevity                  
 bonuses.  That would pretty closely match current requirements for            
 the permanent fund dividend.                                                  
 Number 065                                                                    
 SENATOR DONLEY asked if SB 304 would result in a dual system.                 
 Would seniors lose for months they were out, and then if they were            
 gone for more than 180 days, they would be permanently ineligible?            
 CHAIRMAN SHARP responded that is correct.  If they are gone for               
 more than 180 days in a twelve-month period, they would be                    
 ineligible.  He asked if anyone wished to testify on the                      
 legislation.  Hearing none, the chairman stated SB 304 will have a            
 hearing in the Finance Committee, and asked the pleasure of the               
 Number 095                                                                    
 SENATOR LEMAN made a motion to discharge SB 304 and accompanying              
 fiscal note from the Senate State Affairs Committee with individual           
 CHAIRMAN SHARP, hearing no objection, stated SB 304 was discharged            
 from the Senate State Affairs Committee.                                      
       HB 179 LIMIT TERM OF COMMRS OF EDUC. & FISH/GAME                      
 Number 105                                                                    
 CHAIRMAN SHARP brought up HB 179 as the next order of business                
 before the Senate State Affairs Committee.  He called the sponsor's           
 representative to testify.                                                    
 Number 115                                                                    
 JOSHUA DONALDSON, Staff to Representative Gene Therriault, prime              
 sponsor of HB 179, read the sponsor's statement.  HB 179 would                
 change the term of office for the commissioners of Education and              
 Fish and Game, so that their terms would not exceed the term of the           
 governor who appointed them.                                                  
 Number 135                                                                    
 SENATOR LEMAN asked what the employment contracts specify for the             
 current commissioners.                                                        
 Number 145                                                                    
 CHRYSTAL SMITH, Legal Administrator, Office of the Attorney                   
 General, Department of Law, stated the administration supports HB
 179.  She is not aware of the terms of the contract--or if there is           
 a contract, of the current commissioners.  It would be her guess              
 that the current Commissioner of the Department of Education does             
 not have a contract.  She did some research into former                       
 commissioners of the Department of Education and their contracts,             
 and so far as she can discover there were not written contracts in            
 the past, prior to Commissioner Covey's situation.  Ms. Smith                 
 stated that the committee substitute does parallel the governor's             
 effort to ensure that these commissioners, like the other                     
 commissioners, serve at the pleasure of the appointing entity and             
 that there are no fixed terms which could potentially overlap the             
 governor's term.  The administration has been pleased to work with            
 Representative Therriault on this issue.  Ms. Smith reviewed                  
 current statute relating to appointing and dismissing the                     
 commissioners of Education and Fish & game.  She thinks HB 179 will           
 benefit the state.                                                            
 CHAIRMAN SHARP asked if there are questions of Ms. Smith.  Hearing            
 none, he asked the pleasure of the committee.                                 
 SENATOR LEMAN made a motion to discharge HB 179 and accompanying              
 zero fiscal note from the Senate State Affairs Committee with                 
 individual recommendations.  Senator Leman noted for the record he            
 thinks the fiscal note should have shown savings to the state.                
 Number 230                                                                    
 CHAIRMAN SHARP, hearing no objection, stated HB 179 was discharged            
 from the Senate State Affairs Committee.                                      
           SB 191 ELECTION CAMPAIGN FINANCE REFORM                           
 Number 240                                                                    
 CHAIRMAN SHARP brought up SB 191 as the next order of business                
 before the Senate State Affairs Committee.  He informed the                   
 committee that the proposed committee substitute wraps in all the             
 amendments that were attached to the previous version the committee           
 reviewed.  The chairman asked Mr. Chenoweth to review the proposed            
 committee substitute.                                                         
 Number 255                                                                    
 JACK CHENOWETH, Attorney, Legislative Legal and Research Services,            
 stated the proposed committee substitute wraps in about a dozen               
 amendments which have either been before the committee in written             
 form or had been the basis of discussion previously.  He stated he            
 would quickly review the amendments so that the committee could               
 decide whether it wanted to keep them in the bill or take them out.           
 The amendments are as follows:                                                
 Page 5, lines 4-10:                                                         
  Group support/opposition of one candidate of more than                       
  33 1/3%.                                                                     
 Page 5, lines 12-13:                                                        
  Technical amendment: An individual may make a contribution to                
  a group or a political party.                                                
 Page 5, line 13:                                                            
  Technical amendment: Only individuals/groups may make                        
  contributions to a candidate.                                                
 Page 6, line 32:                                                            
  Technical amendment: regarding "person".                                     
 Page 9, line 30:                                                            
  Technical amendment: regarding corporation, company,                         
  partnership, etc. may not make a contribution to a candidate.                
 Page 5, line 28 through page 6, line 15:                                    
  Technical amendment: Individual and group contribution                       
 Page 9, following line 30:                                                  
  Governor/Lieutenant Governor limitations on campaign                         
 Page 14, lines 3, 13, 22-23                                                 
  Technical amendment: regarding contributions to candidates or                
 Page 15, line 23:                                                           
  Technical amendment: regarding disposition of contributions.                 
 Page 16, lines 15-18:                                                       
  Transfer of campaign funds to office account limited to                      
  $2,500.00 per election district times number of years in term                
  to which candidate is elected.                                               
 Page 16, line 21:                                                           
  Technical amendment: regarding current fair market value of                  
  campaign assets.                                                             
 Page 24, lines 9-13 (to CSHB 368()):                                        
  Technical amendment: regarding definition of "political                      
 Page 26, line 1:                                                            
  Technical amendment: regarding cross reference adjustment to                 
  intentional violation of campaign misconduct in the first                    
 Number 295                                                                    
 SENATOR DUNCAN asked if, under SB 191, the democratic or republican           
 party can contribute $15,000.00 - would that be the state party?              
 MR. CHENOWETH responded, yes.                                                 
 SENATOR DUNCAN asked if the Juneau Democratic Party, which is a               
 district party, could also contribute $15,000.00.                             
 MR. CHENOWETH responded, no.  The idea would be that the umbrella             
 cover all contributions from political parties, and political                 
 parties intend to cover all of these things.                                  
 Number 310                                                                    
 SENATOR DUNCAN asked if any sub-unit of a state political party               
 would fall under this umbrella.                                               
 MR. CHENOWETH responded, yes.                                                 
 CHAIRMAN SHARP stated he had the same question earlier.                       
 SENATOR DUNCAN noted that means that a local political party, that            
 has no connection with the state party - a candidate cannot receive           
 more than a total of $15,000.00 from both organizations.  He is not           
 sure he agrees with that.  Is that specified in the initiative?               
 MR. CHENOWETH responded, no.  The initiative only addresses a                 
 political party.  Trying to sort through this relationship of these           
 other groups is something that arose out of discussions with                  
 Representatives James and Finkelstein and Senator Kelly.  The                 
 initiative is largely silent on this.                                         
 CHAIRMAN SHARP stated he asked for clarification, because they need           
 to know one way or the other how that was going to come down.  He             
 thinks it could have been interpreted either way.                             
 Number 337                                                                    
 SENATOR LEMAN stated that one other option organizations might have           
 would be to be a "group".  Then the $1,000.00 limit would apply.              
 They would be out from under that umbrella, but there would be                
 $1,000.00 limit.                                                              
 SENATOR DUNCAN commented that is comforting.                                  
 SENATOR LEMAN stated they could make the democratic party just a              
 SENATOR DUNCAN responded if Senator Leman would make the democrats            
 an organized group, they would appreciate it.  They haven't been              
 organized for years.                                                          
 CHAIRMAN SHARP asked Mr. Chenoweth to continue reviewing the                  
 previously listed amendments.                                                 
 Number 345                                                                    
 MR. CHENOWETH continued review of the previously listed amendments.           
 Number 370                                                                    
 SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS asked if senators shouldn't receive double             
 the amount that representatives receive, concerning the language on           
 page 6, lines 13-14.                                                          
 MR. CHENOWETH responded that is a policy call.  The thinking on the           
 part of the committee (Senator Kelly and Representatives James and            
 Finkelstein) was that the relationship should be roughly 1.5:1, or            
 3:2.  Once they had settled upon that relationship among                      
 themselves, they indicated that they wanted that relationship kept            
 in certain places.  That's how the $15,000.00:$10,000.00                      
 distinction was reached.                                                      
 SENATOR DUNCAN concurred with Senator Phillips.  We might be able             
 to use the "amount per election district" language in this place,             
 which was used in the area addressing transfer of excess campaign             
 funds to office accounts.                                                     
 CHAIRMAN SHARP asked Mr. Chenoweth what the petition said,                    
 regarding that subject: did it refer to maximum amounts allowed by            
 party?  He wants to stay as close to the initiative as possible.              
 MR. CHENOWETH replied, $5,000.00 per year to a legislative                    
 candidate, $50,000.00 per year for the state-wide races.                      
 SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS stated that would be $10,000.00 per year for           
 representatives and $20,000.00 for senators.                                  
 MR. CHENOWETH responded, yes.  The initiative allows $5,000.00 per            
 year to legislative candidates for contributions from political               
 SENATOR DUNCAN asked, "Not per year, per election, you mean?"                 
 MR. CHENOWETH replied it is expressed in terms of per year.  But              
 because of the window that you have in which to raise money, it               
 would have been just that period of time.                                     
 SENATOR DUNCAN said, "Then it means per election.  So this is                 
 really an increase."                                                          
 SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS stated it should be $20,000.000 and                    
 $10,000.00 then.                                                              
 SENATOR DUNCAN agreed that it should be $20,000.00 and $10,000.00.            
 Number 395                                                                    
 CHAIRMAN SHARP stated that in the utility business, you would refer           
 to this as not doubling, but efficiencies of size.  He asked if               
 there were further comments on that section.  Hearing none, he                
 asked Mr. Chenoweth to continue reviewing the previously listed               
 MR. CHENOWETH continued review of the previously listed amendments.           
 SENATOR DUNCAN asked what the amendment on page 5, line 14 means:             
 only individuals and groups can make contributions to candidates.             
 MR. CHENOWETH responded the amendment is not concerned with that              
 sentence.  It is the second one.  The first one raises a different            
 problem: it puts us in conflict with something later in the bill,             
 or at least impliedly in conflict with subsection (d) on page 6.              
 So he thinks they may want to revisit the first sentence, or take             
 it out all together.  In point of fact, all three entities                    
 mentioned in SB 191, individuals, groups, and political parties,              
 are able to make contributions to candidates.  What gets us back to           
 where the initiative was taking us, is subsection (h) on page 10.             
 Number 430                                                                    
 MR. CHENOWETH continued his review of the previously listed                   
 Number 460                                                                    
 SENATOR DUNCAN asked, wouldn't the maximum amount a governor or               
 lieutenant governor could contribute to a candidate be $1,000.00?             
 Why have this prohibition?  If all they can contribute is $500.00             
 individually, or $1,000.00 if they form a group, that's not a great           
 amount of money.  Why  is that in the bill at all?  He thought the            
 purpose of this was so that a group controlled by the governor                
 couldn't go out and raise $200,000.00 at a fund raiser, and then              
 use that money to contribute to legislative candidates.  If they're           
 prohibited under SB 191, absent this provision, from contributing             
 no more than $1,000.00--                                                      
 SENATOR LEMAN replied that's $60,000.00.                                      
 SENATOR DUNCAN stated the governor wouldn't contribute to Senator             
 Leman, so it would only be $59,000.00.                                        
 SENATOR LEMAN stated there are 60 seats.                                      
 SENATOR DUNCAN stated his point is he is not sure they're doing               
 what they think they're doing.  It's not stopping large                       
 contributions, because they're already limited to $1,000.00.                  
 CHAIRMAN SHARP stated that's true.  He thinks all it is doing is              
 saying that the intention of allowing the extra six months for                
 governor and lieutenant governor for state-wide campaigns is that             
 the time is to be used for those campaigns, and not channeled into            
 legislative races, which are forbidden from raising money during              
 the session.  This purifies it to the point of no contributions.              
 SENATOR DUNCAN thinks it is on the edge of being ridiculous.  If we           
 do that, we should extend this provision to other public office-              
 holders with the ability to raise money during an off year.  U.S.             
 Senators could do the same thing, and they do.  Ted Stevens comes             
 to the state and holds fund raisers for groups he controls to                 
 contribute to legislative races.                                              
 SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS stated, "He has?"                                      
 SENATOR LEMAN stated, "He does?"                                              
 SENATOR DUNCAN asserted that (Senator Stevens) raises money for you           
 guys all the time.                                                            
 SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS stated that was news to him.                           
 CHAIRMAN SHARP stated that is a hypothesis that hasn't had                    
 beneficial results for anyone he knows of.                                    
 SENATOR DUNCAN stated that Senator Stevens held a fund raiser in              
 Anchorage last year for legislative candidates.  He thinks it's a             
 ridiculous prohibition, but if we're going to prohibit the                    
 lieutenant governor and the governor from doing that, then we                 
 should also prohibit U.S Senators and others from doing it.                   
 SENATOR LEMAN stated he's held fund raisers too.                              
 SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS stated he agrees with the general policy,              
 CHAIRMAN SHARP asked if the petition targeted congressional races.            
 SENATOR DUNCAN stated we would not be targeting congressional races           
 by doing this: we're not saying they can't raise as much as they              
 want for their own campaign.  His only suggestion is to specify               
 that they can't raise money for legislative candidates.  He doesn't           
 think it's a big problem; he doesn't think the language is even               
 necessary, because the group contribution would limit                         
 CHAIRMAN SHARP thinks it's a matter of fairness: if they're going             
 to be allowed to raise one penny during session, it ought to go               
 towards the races for which they're raising the money.                        
 SENATOR DUNCAN stated, then the same should be true for other                 
 state-wide officer holders.                                                   
 CHAIRMAN SHARP stated he agrees on one point: since this limits the           
 raising of money by governor and lieutenant governor candidates               
 starting on January 1 of the election year, he doubts if those                
 candidates would be distributing much of that money to other races,           
 when they've got their own race ahead of them.                                
 SENATOR DUNCAN thinks everyone should be prohibited from doing                
 SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS asked if the initiative addressed that.                
 MR. CHENOWETH responded it does not.                                          
 SENATOR DUNCAN asked if the initiative addressed subsection (g).              
 MR. CHENOWETH responded the initiative does not address that                  
 SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS stated he would entertain an amendment, if             
 Senator Duncan wants to cover them all.  It's fine with him; he               
 thinks it's good public policy.  He's still trying to figure out              
 Senator Duncan's comment about Steven's fund raiser.                          
 SENATOR DUNCAN asserted that Senator Steven's came to Anchorage and           
 held a fund raiser for republicans.                                           
 CHAIRMAN SHARP asked Mr. Chenoweth to continue reviewing the                  
 previously listed amendments.                                                 
 Number 517                                                                    
 MR. CHENOWETH continued review of the previously listed amendments.           
 SENATOR DONLEY stated he is concerned with language on page 17,               
 line 8, that specified no property with a fair-market value in                
 excess of $2,500.00 could be retained.  He had hoped that the                 
 committee would consider establishing a formula that would exclude            
 one computer and one printer from that amount.                                
 CHAIRMAN SHARP thinks that is the next amendment Mr. Chenoweth is             
 going to discuss.  The discussion revolved around how fast                    
 computers and electronic equipment lose value from the day it's               
 SENATOR DONLEY stated that's why he thought the bill could allow              
 one computer and one printer.  It seems appropriate to him.  It's             
 not like you're keeping an airplane, or something.                            
 Number 534                                                                    
 CHAIRMAN SHARP asked if subparagraph (D) on page 17 is clear                  
 SENATOR DUNCAN asked Mr. Chenoweth for a definition of "election              
 MR. CHENOWETH responded "election district" is defined in AS 15.60,           
 in the election code to mean a house district.                              
 CHAIRMAN SHARP asked Mr. Chenoweth if the next amendment was the              
 one with which Senator Donley was concerned.                                  
 MR. CHENOWETH replied it is not, but he can jump ahead, if the                
 committee wishes.  He did not give a lot of thought to the                    
 particular language Senator Donley suggested, but SB 191 can be               
 modified as anyone sees fit.                                                  
 SENATOR DUNCAN asked if "current fair market value" is new                    
 MR. CHENOWETH responded, yes.                                                 
 SENATOR DUNCAN asked how current fair market value would be                   
 determined: would they have to hire an appraiser?                             
 MR. CHENOWETH thinks value could be established fairly easily, and            
 wouldn't need to retain the services of an appraiser.                         
 Number 556                                                                    
 SENATOR DONLEY stated that's why he wants to specify the type of              
 property for those two large ticket items: you wouldn't have to               
 assess the fair market value of them.                                         
 CHAIRMAN SHARP stated he doesn't have a problem with that, other              
 than being led into a maze of other equipment that might be                   
 valuable to other people.  He would venture to say, if one walked             
 into the shop in which one's computer was purchased, they could               
 probably give you a good idea of what it's worth.  He hasn't been             
 able to find any shop that would take in any kind of a computer for           
 a trade for any money.  So he thinks value is pretty close to zero            
 after a while.                                                                
 SENATOR DONLEY stated it would remove a lot of questions if it was            
 just specified.                                                               
 CHAIRMAN SHARP stated he has no problem with that, if Senator                 
 Donley would like to craft the language.  So moved.                           
 SENATOR DONLEY stated just a conceptual amendment.                            
 SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS asked Mr. Chenoweth how the initiative                 
 addressed this issue.  He doesn't understand what they're talking             
 about, because he doesn't have this problem.                                  
 MR. CHENOWETH stated, we did not-                                             
 SENATOR DONLEY interjected that it's the same language that's in              
 the initiative, except for the fair market value.                             
 SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS asked if it was limited to $2,500.00 for               
 SENATOR DONLEY stated it says "property".                                     
 SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS asked if other committee members have                  
 property after the campaign.                                                  
 SENATOR DONLEY responded, arguably: there are sledgehammers-                  
 SENATOR DUNCAN interjected there are bumper stickers and buttons.             
 CHAIRMAN SHARP said there are post-hole diggers.                              
 SENATOR LEMAN said there are stakes and old signs, the ones certain           
 groups haven't stolen.                                                        
 SENATOR DONLEY stated that, arguably, that would all fall under               
 this clause.                                                                  
 SENATOR DUNCAN commented he has no idea to what the bill is                   
 referring when it specifies "property".                                       
 SENATOR DONLEY stated that "property" could even be signs.                    
 SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS asked Representative Finkelstein what was              
 meant by "property".  Surely it didn't mean wooden stakes, did it?            
 REPRESENTATIVE DAVID FINKELSTEIN responded, no.  It's to try to               
 make sure those kind of things could be carried forward from one              
 campaign to the next.  If stakes have a value, it certainly is                
 nominal.  But the initiative was absolute, other than this: no                
 items of value and no money could be transferred forward.  So this            
 is the only way that things could be transferred forward.  The                
 sense was that people could generally fit under $2,500.00 the kind            
 of assets they would have from a campaign that they would want to             
 SENATOR DUNCAN asked for clarification that would include campaign            
 materials, like signs.                                                        
 REPRESENTATIVE FINKELSTEIN replied with those, the value is                   
 probably zero, or close to it.                                                
 SENATOR DONLEY commented, fair market value...                                
 SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS asked what would happen if you had a bad               
 campaign manager, and he or she bought more signs than you could              
 use, but you want to keep those signs for the next election?  Do              
 you have to burn everything under $2,500.00?                                  
 REPRESENTATIVE FINKELSTEIN stated the concept would be...                     
 TAPE 96-21, SIDE B                                                            
 ...campaign yard signs with someone's name on them are pretty much            
 close to nominal, as close to zero value as you can get.  No one's            
 going to buy them at a yard sale.                                             
 SENATOR DONLEY thinks that's why it's important to specify fair               
 market value.                                                                 
 REPRESENTATIVE FINKELSTEIN stated the problem with determining                
 value isn't that unusual.  If you get a non-monetary contribution             
 to your campaign, you have to figure out what it's worth.  He                 
 thinks that a computer would be the only item that might ever butt            
 up against the limit, and there aren't many computer-printer                  
 combinations that have been around for eight months that are going            
 to be worth anywhere near $2,500.00.  So he doesn't see a problem.            
 CHAIRMAN SHARP stated his only concern with specifying a computer             
 in SB 191 is that there is a vast range of costs on computers, and            
 it could be fairly expensive, or not.                                         
 Number 575                                                                    
 SENATOR DONLEY commented if you go back to what the purpose is, he            
 thinks it's to keep someone from buying a house or a car or an                
 airplane.  He doesn't think the purpose was ever to keep a                    
 candidate from utilizing a computer and a printer.  The value of              
 that equipment to the public continues through the person's term in           
 SENATOR LEMAN stated one can get a computer today with a gigabyte             
 of storage on the hard drive and a pentium chip, with a printer,              
 for under $2,500.00.  Used, the value would be well under that.  He           
 thinks that range is ok.  What else might there be of value that              
 could be carried over?  He thinks stakes are almost worthless, and            
 you would almost want to pay someone to take your old signs.                  
 CHAIRMAN SHARP stated he is more concerned with 4x8 sheets of                 
 plywood, than with computers.  He asked that the committee continue           
 the review of the amendments.  If there is desire to offer                    
 amendments, members should mark the area in which they're                     
 interested, and we will return to that section.                               
 Number 565                                                                    
 MR. CHENOWETH continued review of the previously listed amendments.           
 SENATOR DUNCAN asked if paragraph (8) is worded the same as it was            
 in the original version of SB 191.                                            
 Number 520                                                                    
 MR. CHENOWETH replied, no.  That was revised by the working                   
 committee because the initiative did not allow transfer of unused             
 campaign contributions for a future election campaign.  The                   
 committee then further refined it by making the ratio between                 
 senate and house candidates 3:2.                                              
 SENATOR DUNCAN thinks that language should be consistent with other           
 language in the bill.  He thinks that language should be changed to           
 "election districts" in this case also.                                       
 MR. CHENOWETH noted that (8)(B) and (C), where there are specific             
 dollar amounts, would be replaced with specific amounts per                   
 election district.  He asked, what if you're the losing candidate?            
 The approach in paragraph (9), which is the transfer of $2,500.00             
 per election district, applies only for legislative office                    
 accounts.  But paragraph (8) is not limited to those who are                  
 elected.  It is a transfer for a future election campaign, if you             
 were to lose, with the expectation that you might want to run in              
 the future.                                                                   
 SENATOR DUNCAN stated, if you're a losing candidate, maybe you                
 shouldn't be able to transfer anything.  He said he was kidding.              
 CHAIRMAN SHARP asked Senator Duncan if he still wanted to see 2:1.            
 SENATOR DUNCAN thinks Mr. Chenoweth made a good point: he doesn't             
 think you can use the same language there as was used on page 17,             
 subparagraph (D).  He is wondering if the committee wants to                  
 consider $10,000.00:$5,000.00, instead of $7,500.00:$5,000.00.                
 Number 485                                                                    
 CHAIRMAN SHARP stated he doesn't have a problem with it one way or            
 the other, as long as it doesn't become apparent as the legislation           
 moves through other committees that it is not close enough to the             
 SENATOR DUNCAN made a motion that in paragraph (8), subparagraph              
 (B) on page 16, "$7,500.00" be changed to "$10,000.00".                       
 CHAIRMAN SHARP asked if there was any objection to that.                      
 SENATOR LEMAN objected for the purpose of comparing that to the               
 initiative.  Would it be similar?                                             
 REPRESENTATIVE FINKELSTEIN replied it is all zero in the                      
 initiative.  This provision was developed in discussions with house           
 and senate members.  The 3:2 ratio was a compromise based on two              
 things: actual spending patterns for elections.  When he runs for             
 a seat in Anchorage, his costs are exactly the same as Senator                
 Donley for advertisements and travel.  Existing law states that the           
 contribution maximum is $1,000.00 to a house candidate or a senate            
 candidate.  There is no differentiation made.  So it is a                     
 significant concession to go even to a 3:2 ratio.                             
 Number 465                                                                    
 SENATOR DUNCAN stated what Representative Finkelstein said makes              
 sense as far as what an urban senate race would cost compared to an         
 urban house race.  But he submits that in a rural district, where             
 a candidate could have 92 villages in a senate district and half              
 that in a house district, the travel costs will be much, much                 
 higher.  He thinks that needs to be recognized.                               
 REPRESENTATIVE FINKELSTEIN stated that is a good point.  The idea             
 wasn't to start a major fund for the next campaign.  It was to have           
 some start up money.  $5,000.00 isn't very much for a race that's             
 going to cost $70,000.00.                                                     
 SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS stated $5,000.00 is a lot of money for him.            
 He spent $10,000.00 last time, so that is half of his whole                   
 CHAIRMAN SHARP asked Senator Leman if he still maintained his                 
 SENATOR LEMAN responded he did not hear a judgement on whether                
 Representative Finkelstein thinks that would be substantially                 
 similar, not that the decision is his.                                        
 SENATOR DUNCAN doesn't think Representative Finkelstein can make              
 that recommendation.                                                          
 SENATOR LEMAN knows, but since Representative Finkelstein was an              
 integral part of the initiative process, and since Representative             
 Finkelstein is present, Senator Leman assumes he has some feelings            
 about it.  What's your opinion?                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE FINKELSTEIN replied he has lots of opinions on                 
 everything, but he doesn't think he can answer Senator Leman's                
 SENATOR LEMAN stated, for once he would ask Representative                    
 Finkelstein's opinion.                                                        
 REPRESENTATIVE FINKELSTEIN stated, if Senator Leman wants his                 
 opinion, he believes the $5,000.00:$7,500.00:$50,000.00 reflects              
 the ratios of house:senate:governor's races, and is a significant             
 concession already.  Going further would push the limit too far,              
 and leads to some degree of antagonism between house and senate               
 provisions on something which may not be necessary.                           
 Number 437                                                                    
 SENATOR LEMAN stated, in that case, he removes his objection.                 
 CHAIRMAN SHARP asked Senator Leman if he wanted to promote                    
 CHAIRMAN SHARP, hearing no further objection, stated that the                 
 amendment was adopted.                                                        
 In paragraph (8), subparagraph (B) on page 16, "$7,500.00" is                 
 changed to "$10,000.00".                                                      
 SENATOR LEMAN thinks the house will probably take a look at that.             
 SENATOR DUNCAN said then it will be $2,500.00 for the senate and              
 $7,500.00 for the house.                                                      
 Number 430                                                                    
 MR. CHENOWETH continued review of the previously listed amendments.           
 SENATOR DONLEY thinks it would be appropriate to identify a                   
 computer and printer as off the table, and then everything else can           
 be tallied up.                                                                
 CHAIRMAN SHARP asked if that was on page 17.                                  
 SENATOR DONLEY responded, yes.  That would just be a conceptual               
 amendment.  It would be, "one computer, one printer, and $2,500.00            
 fair market value other items".                                               
 SENATOR LEMAN asked, why not just raise the amount so that you know           
 a computer, a printer, and a few sheets of paper could be covered             
 under that amount.                                                            
 SENATOR DUNCAN stated the problem with that is that things get more           
 expensive.  This does not have inflation proofing.                            
 SENATOR LEMAN commented we have to eat inflation, just like                   
 everyone else.                                                                
 SENATOR DONLEY doesn't think it was intended.                                 
 SENATOR DUNCAN thinks it was intended.  He does not think they even           
 wanted candidates to have excess buttons.                                     
 SENATOR LEMAN asked Senator Duncan if he had excess buttons.                  
 SENATOR DUNCAN replied he's had excess buttons for years.                     
 SENATOR LEMAN asked if he could have one of Senator Duncan's excess           
 CHAIRMAN SHARP asked if there is any objection to Senator Donley's            
 amendment.  Hearing no objection, the amendment is adopted.                   
 The conceptual amendment will be something along the lines of: one            
 computer, one printer, and $2,500.00 fair market value other items.           
 CHAIRMAN SHARP asked for a motion to adopt the committee substitute           
 for SB 191.                                                                   
 SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS made a motion to adopt the State Affairs               
 Committee substitute, as amended, for SB 191.                                 
 CHAIRMAN SHARP, hearing no objection, stated the committee                    
 substitute for SB 191 was adopted.                                            
 SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS asked Representative Finkelstein if the                
 group supporting the initiative has seen this version of SB 191.              
 If so, what is their opinion of it?                                           
 REPRESENTATIVE FINKELSTEIN responded that Mike Frank has reviewed             
 the version just prior to this version; he hasn't seen this                   
 version.  Mr. Frank's comments were in the newspaper, and his                 
 comment was that he thought the committees were working on                    
 reasonable subjects in a serious fashion to try to find a                     
 compromise.  But Mr. Frank wasn't going to offer his opinion as to            
 whether any version met that standard.                                        
 CHAIRMAN SHARP thinks that's all that can be expected.                        
 REPRESENTATIVE FINKELSTEIN stated Mr. Frank hadn't seen the most              
 recent changes.                                                               
 SENATOR DUNCAN stated there hasn't been anything major in the most            
 recent changes.                                                               
 Number 380                                                                    
 SENATOR DONLEY stated his biggest concern with the campaign finance           
 reform area is an increase in the possibility that a person with a            
 lot of individual, personal wealth could buy an election, and that            
 another candidate would not be able to match the other person's               
 wealth through contributions.  Senator Donley stated he's done                
 research, and there are several states with provisions relating to            
 this subject.  In Arizona, if a candidate contributes more than               
 $20,000.00 of his or her own money for state-wide office, or                  
 $10,000.00 for other offices, the other candidates for the same               
 office are exempt from the caps on individual donations up to the             
 amount that the other candidate put into the election.  In                    
 Washington, there is a provision that states, if a candidate does             
 make a contribution to your own campaign, it has to be made within            
 21 days of the general election.  A candidate couldn't wait until             
 seven days before an election and dump $50,000.00 into a media buy.           
 SENATOR DUNCAN likes that provision.                                          
 SENATOR DONLEY stated that situation was not addressed in the                 
 initiative, but both seem to be in the spirit of the initiative.              
 They address the number one objection he has heard to the                     
 initiative, and that is it would handicap individuals who don't               
 have a lot of money.  He wanted to introduce those ideas to the               
 committee, and wondered if they had any interest in either of those           
 Number 348                                                                    
 CHAIRMAN SHARP shares Senator Donley's concern.  He thinks they               
 could put limits on what could be spent.                                      
 SENATOR DONLEY stated he has a resolution on adopting campaign                
 spending limits, which is stuck in the Senate Judiciary Committee.            
 SENATOR DUNCAN likes the second proposal that the state of                    
 Washington has in place.  He thinks it might be too complicated to            
 control a provision like that of Arizona.  That might be a                    
 monitoring nightmare.  But he thinks specifying that if people are            
 going to make personal contributions to their own campaign, those             
 contributions have to be made by a certain date has a lot of merit.           
 Senator Duncan is not sure 21 days is the correct length of time;             
 maybe it should be 60 days.                                                   
 CHAIRMAN SHARP thinks that 30 days out, most of the time has been             
 bought up.  No later than 30 days before would probably cover it              
 and it wouldn't be too excessive.  He is open for conversation on             
 that; he doesn't have a problem with it.  Especially since one of             
 his opponents dumped $50,000.00 into the race in the last ten days            
 before the election.                                                          
 SENATOR DONLEY thinks 21 days might be too short a time frame,                
 especially the way media buys occur in Alaska.                                
 SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS asked if the chairman and Senator Donley               
 were referring to both the primary and general elections.                     
 SENATOR DONLEY replied it would probably be more reasonable to have           
 it for both elections.                                                        
 SENATOR DUNCAN thinks that is a good idea, also.                              
 Number 310                                                                    
 SENATOR LEMAN stated it could be done so that it precedes the                 
 thirty-day report, so it would show up on that report.                        
 SENATOR DUNCAN stated they could have it precede the thirty-day               
 report for the primary and the general elections.                             
 SENATOR DONLEY thinks that would be a reasonable guideline.                   
 SENATOR LEMAN stated that the money wouldn't have to be spent, it             
 would just have to be transferred to the campaign account.                    
 SENATOR DONLEY stated that's the way it is in Washington.                     
 SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS asked, what's wrong with just doing it on              
 the day you file?                                                             
 SENATOR DUNCAN stated you might just be able to limit total                   
 campaign expenditures that way.  He asked Mr. Chenoweth if they               
 could go back that far.                                                       
 MR. CHENOWETH does not think they could go back that far.  You've             
 got to give people who have the ability to contribute to their own            
 campaign the opportunity to take advantage of that ability.                   
 CHAIRMAN SHARP thinks if they tied it to a present required filing            
 report, which is a thirty-day report prior to each election, it               
 would probably be easier to enforce.                                          
 SENATOR DUNCAN stated he would like to make that motion.                      
 CHAIRMAN SHARP stated he is looking for a conceptual amendment.               
 Number 285                                                                    
 SENATOR DONLEY stated the amendment would read something like: if             
 a candidate wanted to put their own money in, they would have to do           
 it prior to the 30 day report for that particular election.  It's             
 pretty simple.                                                                
 SENATOR LEMAN added, prior to the cut-off date for the thirty-day         
 SENATOR DONLEY responded, yes, prior to the deadline for reporting.           
 SENATOR LEMAN asked if there would be a dollar limit on this                  
 SENATOR DONLEY responded, no, because if you're just going to use             
 your own funds, you have to do it before the thirty-day filing                
 report cut-off.                                                               
 SENATOR LEMAN asked if that meant you couldn't use any of your own            
 funds if you didn't put them in thirty days before the election.              
 CHAIRMAN SHARP responded that's correct.  All personal                        
 contributions from the candidate would have to be made publicly               
 known prior to the thirty-day report.                                         
 SENATOR DONLEY commented the thing that's nice about it, is it's so           
 SENATOR LEMAN stated it's simple, and you're going to see a bunch             
 of funny things happening.                                                    
 SENATOR DONLEY responded, you mean candidates giving money to other           
 people to give back to them?                                                  
 SENATOR LEMAN replied, no.  You're going to see a bunch of people             
 buying insurance for their campaign by putting money into that                
 account thirty days before, whether or not they intend to use it.             
 SENATOR DONLEY stated, at least people would know it, and you                 
 wouldn't get the last ten days, $50,000.00 scenario.                          
 Number 260                                                                    
 SENATOR LEMAN thinks they would just want to put a dollar limit on            
 it: anything over a certain amount.  He thinks it's fairly complex.           
 SENATOR DONLEY suggested, "personal contributions can't exceed                
 $5,000.00 after the twenty-first day.                                         
 MR. CHENOWETH added, "ahead of the election."                                 
 SENATOR DONLEY replied, yes.                                                  
 MR. CHENOWETH asked, could you give $40,000.00 ahead of twenty-one            
 days out, but nothing after twenty-one?                                       
 SENATOR DONLEY replied, yes.                                                  
 CHAIRMAN SHARP added, once you've exceeded $5,000.00, you couldn't            
 contribute anything more after the thirty-day filing.                         
 Number 230                                                                    
 SENATOR LEMAN suggested that if an amendment is made, they specify            
 "anything in excess of $5,000.00".  That would allow for fairly               
 small contributions.                                                          
 SENATOR DONLEY stated, that's the way it's written in Washington,             
 and that's reasonable.  The only difference would be we would have            
 the thirty-day reporting period, instead of a twenty-one day                  
 CHAIRMAN SHARP stated then that would be a $5,000.00 total maximum            
 on contributions and loans.                                                   
 SENATOR LEMAN added that candidates could contribute more than              
 $5,000.00, they would just need to report anything in excess of               
 $5,000.00 at least thirty days before the election.                           
 CHAIRMAN SHARP clarified, once a candidate reaches the $5,000.00              
 threshold, they cannot contribute any more after the thirty-day               
 reporting deadline.                                                           
 SENATOR DONLEY stated then, if someone had only contributed                   
 $2,000.00 or $3,000.00, then they could still contribute $1,000.00.           
 He thinks that's reasonable, because that's not really buying the             
 Number 213                                                                    
 CHAIRMAN SHARP asked if anyone had a problem with that conceptual             
 amendment.  Hearing none, the amendment is adopted.                           
 SENATOR DUNCAN stated he had a conforming amendment on page 7, line           
 9.  He suggested changing the language to read, "$1,000.00 per                
 election district times the number of years of the term."  That is            
 basically the same language used later on.                                    
 CHAIRMAN SHARP doesn't think it's quite the same as the other area            
 where that language was used.  This is a one-time expense for a               
 campaign, not a four-year term for office expense.                            
 SENATOR DUNCAN states, but it's for a senate campaign where the               
 district is twice as big.  He understands what the chairman is                
 saying.  But Senator Duncan stated he's just trying to get to the             
 $2,000.00 for the house and $4,000.00 for the senate.  How would              
 you do that?                                                                  
 CHAIRMAN SHARP hearing no objections, stated that amendment was               
 Number 158                                                                    
 SENATOR DONLEY asked Mr. Chenoweth about the U.S. Supreme Court               
 Decision that affected the disclosure statutes.  He asked if SB 191           
 might not be consistent with existing law.  It seems to him like SB
 191 might be squarely unconstitutional.                                       
 CHAIRMAN SHARP asked Senator Donley what part of the bill he was              
 looking at.                                                                   
 SENATOR DONLEY replied he's looking at page 25.  The U.S. Supreme             
 Court says the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution prohibits             
 governments from restricting free speech to the extent that you               
 require people to disclose authorship of political materials.  The            
 specific case had to do with a flyer involving a ballot                       
 proposition.  He thinks this is unconstitutional.                             
 CHAIRMAN SHARP offered that there may be a lot of items in SB 191             
 that are unconstitutional.  He does not know that the committee is            
 there to solve the constitutionality of the petition.                         
 MR. CHENOWETH stated they did go back in to the bill to make an               
 exception based upon the MacEntire Decision.  One of the places we            
 made it was Section 14.  He thinks it is drawn to reflect the                 
 concept involved in the MacEntire Decision.  What they did not do,            
 and perhaps needs to be done, is put an exception in at the point             
 which Senator Donley noted on page 25, so that there is recognition           
 of the exception so the campaign misconduct of the criminal statute           
 only provides when it ought to apply: that is when the individual             
 is required elsewhere in the bill to print the "paid for by"                  
 legend.  So we are not inferring that someone has to do it in all             
 cases to avoid criminal prosecution, that there is an exception               
 based upon the exception identified in MacEntire.  If that's a                
 satisfactory approach to the committee, he can try his hand at                
 SENATOR DONLEY stated that's the least we ought to do.  He thinks             
 the whole thing is constitutionally infirm.                                   
 CHAIRMAN SHARP stated he has no problem with that.                            
 Number 090                                                                    
 SENATOR LEMAN asked if everywhere 33 1/3% appears, on page 5 and              
 page 24, that will be 50%.                                                    
 MR. CHENOWETH responded he has been asked to prepare an amendment             
 that would restore 50%.  It is not an amendment that has been                 
 before this committee.                                                        
 SENATOR LEMAN asked if the committee should not adopt that now.               
 Would that be easier for Mr. Chenoweth?                                       
 MR. CHENOWETH replied, certainly.  It is not there, however, where            
 they sought to change it.  His understanding is that the request              
 was made by the APOC, and the error was on his part.  They seem to            
 be supportive of the change made in 050.  But what they do not want           
 to see changed is the change made in the definition of group on               
 page 24, lines 7 and 15, which he had mistakenly changed.                     
 SENATOR LEMAN offered an amendment on page 24 to change 33 1/3% to            
 CHAIRMAN SHARP asked if there was any objection.  Hearing none, he            
 stated the amendment was adopted.                                             
 Number 060                                                                    
 SENATOR LEMAN asked why, on page 5, the same thing would not be               
 true.  How does that particular section differ?                               
 MR. CHENOWETH responded he does not have an explanation for Senator           
 Leman.  He can only say that the APOC wanted the change there, and            
 he made it in the wrong place.                                                
 BROOKE MILES, Alaska Public Offices Commission, stated the                    
 commission's position is one, what a controlled group is.  A                  
 controlled group is a group controlled by the candidate.  In that             
 scenario, a contribution to a controlled group is the same as a               
 contribution to the candidate.  So the commission didn't want that            
 reduced to only 33 1/3%.  The language on page 5, line 8 concerns             
 a naming convention for groups.  It was the commission's position             
 that if the group was going to be spending 1/3 of its' money on               
 behalf of one candidate, to have the candidate's name be part of              
 the group's name would provide the public more notice of what that            
 group is about.                                                               
 TAPE 96-22, SIDE A                                                            
 CHAIRMAN SHARP asked for a technical amendment on page 5, lines 13            
 and 14: who may make contributions...                                         
 MR. CHENOWETH interjected he will fix it up to pick up a reference            
 to "political party" or eliminate it to do what is necessary,                 
 because it is inconsistent with what is allowed later in 070.                 
 CHAIRMAN SHARP asked if there are any other comments or suggested             
 amendments by committee members.  Hearing none, he asked the                  
 pleasure of the committee.                                                    
 Number 013                                                                    
 SENATOR RANDY PHILLIPS made a motion to discharge CSSB 191(STA),              
 with accompanying fiscal notes, from the Senate State Affairs                 
 Committee with individual recommendations.                                    
 CHAIRMAN SHARP stated SB 191 has referrals to the Judiciary and               
 Finance Committees.                                                           
 Number 025                                                                    
 CHAIRMAN SHARP, hearing no objection, stated SB 191 was discharged            
 from the Senate State Affairs Committee.                                      
 The committee staff-person was thanked for her work on the bill.              
 Number 035                                                                    
 CHAIRMAN SHARP adjourned the Senate State Affairs Committee meeting           
 at 5:12 p.m.                                                                  

Document Name Date/Time Subjects