Legislature(2009 - 2010)HOUSE FINANCE 519

03/23/2009 01:30 PM House FINANCE

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* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
+ Confirmation Hearing: TELECONFERENCED
State Assessment Review Board
<Above Item Postponed from Agenda>
Moved Out of Committee
Moved Out of Committee
+ Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled TELECONFERENCED
HOUSE BILL NO. 86                                                                                                             
     "An Act extending the termination date of the Board of                                                                     
     Veterinary Examiners; and providing for an effective                                                                       
KONRAD JACKSON,  STAFF, REPRESENTATIVE KURT  OLSON, explained                                                                   
that  HB 86  extends the  termination  date of  the Board  of                                                                   
Veterinary  Examiners.    He   observed  that  the  Committee                                                                   
members  had  a  report  by  Legislative   Audit  with  their                                                                   
recommendations.   One  of the recommendations  is an  eight-                                                                   
year extension of the Board.                                                                                                    
Co-Chair  Stoltze  noted  last  year's  legislative  work  to                                                                   
revise statutes related to veterinary medicine.                                                                                 
1:37:18 PM                                                                                                                    
PAT   DAVIDSON,  LEGISLATIVE   AUDITOR,   LEGISLATIVE   AUDIT                                                                   
DIVISION, LEGISLATIVE AFFAIRS  AGENCY, addressed two issue in                                                                   
the audit.    The first is  that vacancies on the  board need                                                                   
to be  filled in a  timely manner.   The Board of  Veterinary                                                                   
Examiners  is a volunteer  board and  full memberships  makes                                                                   
operation of the  board easier.  It was found  that the board                                                                   
was operating effectively and in the public's interest.                                                                         
Ms. Davidson reported  on the second recommendation.   In the                                                                   
financial  analysis, it  was determined  that licensing  fees                                                                   
should be reduced because there is a growing surplus.                                                                           
Mr. Jackson offered to answer questions.                                                                                        
Co-Chair Stoltze pointed out a  concern about the shortage in                                                                   
Alaska of large animal practice veterinary medicine.                                                                            
1:39:37 PM                                                                                                                    
Representative  Foster wondered  why a  member of the  public                                                                   
would need  to be  on the board.   The  vacancy has  not been                                                                   
filled since  last November.   He pointed out that  with only                                                                   
four board members there would  not be enough members to have                                                                   
a quorum.                                                                                                                       
Mr.  Jackson reported  that  one of  the  vacancies has  been                                                                   
filled and is ready for confirmation  by the legislature.  He                                                                   
thought there was a problem of  filling the member quota on a                                                                   
number of boards.                                                                                                               
1:41:47 PM                                                                                                                    
Representative  Joule wondered  if the  lack of interest  was                                                                   
due  to requirements  of disclosure.   Ms.  Davidson had  not                                                                   
heard of  that problem.   She did  not believe the  vacancies                                                                   
were a result of Representative Joule's concern.                                                                                
Mr. Jackson addressed  the issue of ethics laws  and reported                                                                   
that  he has  not  seen  it as  a  detriment to  filling  the                                                                   
1:43:57 PM                                                                                                                    
Co-Chair Stoltze  asked if the  vacancy problem was  a recent                                                                   
one.   Ms. Davidson  did not  know.   She reported  that most                                                                   
boards under sunset review had  similar concerns with filling                                                                   
their boards.                                                                                                                   
Representative  Austerman recalled  subcommittee  discussions                                                                   
about professional  licensing.  He wondered if  it was normal                                                                   
for  boards to  carry  a similar  large  balance of  $271,000                                                                   
related to their  licensing fees.  Ms. Davidson  related that                                                                   
by  statute,  each of  the  boards  is  supposed to  be  self                                                                   
supporting.   They should have  close to a net  zero balance.                                                                   
There is  a concern about a  growing surplus in  future years                                                                   
for the Board of Veterinary Examiners.   She recommended that                                                                   
the fees be  reduced.  There is  a lot of variation,  but the                                                                   
goal is to approach zero within their two-year budgets.                                                                         
Representative  Austerman  asked  if  the  fees  are  set  by                                                                   
regulation.  Ms.  Davidson reported that they are  set by the                                                                   
Division  of  Legislative  Audit  in  coordination  with  the                                                                   
1:47:10 PM                                                                                                                    
Representative Foster recalled  in 1991 there were 116 boards                                                                   
and  commissions.    Governor  Hickle left  office  with  121                                                                   
boards and commissions in spite  of resolving to reduce them.                                                                   
Co-Chair Stoltze  noted a  fiscal note  for $65,000  from the                                                                   
Department of Commerce, Community and Economic Development.                                                                     
1:49:34 PM                                                                                                                    
Co-Chair Hawker MOVED  to REPORT HB 86 out  of Committee with                                                                   
individual recommendations and  the accompanying fiscal note.                                                                   
There being NO OBJECTION, it was so ordered.                                                                                    
HB  86  was  REPORTED  out of  Committee  with  a  "do  pass"                                                                   
recommendation and  with fiscal note #1 by  the Department of                                                                   
Commerce, Community and Economic Development.                                                                                   
1:50:52 PM                                                                                                                    

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
02_HB78_Sponsor_Statement.pdf HFIN 3/23/2009 1:30:00 PM
HB 78
02_HB86_Sponsor_Statement[1].pdf HFIN 3/23/2009 1:30:00 PM
HB 86
04_HB78_LBA_Audit_Summary__08-20056-09.pdf HFIN 3/23/2009 1:30:00 PM
HB 78
05_HB78_LBA_Full_Audit_Report__08-20056-09.pdf HFIN 3/23/2009 1:30:00 PM
HB 78
Division of Legislative Audit digest.doc HFIN 3/23/2009 1:30:00 PM
HB 86
05_HB86_LB&A_Report[1].pdf HFIN 3/23/2009 1:30:00 PM
HB 86
State Assessment Review Board Brown.pdf HFIN 3/23/2009 1:30:00 PM
HB 86