Legislature(2017 - 2018)HOUSE FINANCE 519

02/06/2018 01:30 PM House FINANCE

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Heard & Held
-- Public Testimony --
Heard & Held
-- Public Testimony --
Heard & Held
-- Public Testimony --
+ Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled TELECONFERENCED
HOUSE BILL NO. 274                                                                                                            
     "An Act extending the termination  date of the Board of                                                                    
     Psychologist  and  Psychological  Associate  Examiners;                                                                    
     and providing for an effective date."                                                                                      
2:47:43 PM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE SAM  KITO, SPONSOR,  explained that  the bill                                                                    
extended  the   Board  of  Psychologist   and  Psychological                                                                    
Associate Examiners to June 30,  2026 in accordance with the                                                                    
8-year recommendation of the  Legislative Audit Division. He                                                                    
summarized  that the  long-standing board  provided services                                                                    
and licensing for psychologists in  the state and was "doing                                                                    
a fine job."                                                                                                                    
Co-Chair  Foster  indicated  that  the  committee  had  been                                                                    
joined by                                                                                                                       
Representative Stutes.                                                                                                          
KRIS  CURTIS,   LEGISLATIVE  AUDITOR,  ALASKA   DIVISION  OF                                                                    
LEGISLATIVE AUDIT,  read a portion of  the Legislative Audit                                                                    
Report,  "A Sunset  Review of  the  Department of  Commerce,                                                                    
Community  and Economic  Development  Board of  Psychologist                                                                    
and  Psychological  Associate  Examiners  (board)  (copy  on                                                                    
     Overall,  the  audit  concludes the  board  served  the                                                                    
     interest  by   effectively  licensing   and  regulating                                                                    
     psychologists and                                                                                                          
     psychological    associates.   The    board   monitored                                                                    
     licensees and                                                                                                              
     worked  to ensure  only qualified  individuals practice                                                                    
     in Alaska.                                                                                                                 
     In accordance  with AS  08.03.010(c)(18), the  board is                                                                    
     to terminate  on June 30,  2018. We recommend  that the                                                                    
     extend the board's termination to June 30, 2026                                                                            
Ms.  Curtis  continued  with  page   5  of  the  audit  that                                                                    
contained " Exhibit  2" a table that included  a schedule of                                                                    
licensing  activities.  She noted  that  the  board had  285                                                                    
active licenses,  which represented  a 174  percent increase                                                                    
since the prior sunset audit in 2009.                                                                                           
2:50:35 PM                                                                                                                    
Ms. Curtis  turned to page  7, "Exhibit 4" that  contained a                                                                    
table reflecting  revenue and expenditures. She  offered the                                                                    
following from the audit:                                                                                                       
      fees  were   increased  in  FY  17   for  the  initial                                                                    
     application and  the associate license.  At the  end of                                                                    
     FY 17, as  shown in Exhibit 4, the board  had a surplus                                                                    
     of  $399,525.  Per  the   board,  associate  fees  were                                                                    
     increased to equal the  fees for psychologist licenses.                                                                    
     The application fee was increased  to fully account for                                                                    
     the  costs of  processing incoming  applications. DCBPL                                                                    
     management  did  not  adequately consider  the  surplus                                                                    
     when  setting the  fees,  which  resulted in  licensees                                                                    
     paying higher than justified fees in FY 17.                                                                                
Ms.  Curtis  communicated  that   the  audit  contained  two                                                                    
recommendations:  Recommendation  1, "DCBPL's  director,  in                                                                    
consultation  with  the  board,  should  reduce  fees."  and                                                                    
Recommendation  2:  "DCBPL's  director  should  develop  and                                                                    
implement  procedures to  ensure  courtesy licensees  comply                                                                    
with  monthly  reporting  requirements." She  detailed  that                                                                    
courtesy  licenses  were  limited   to  30  days  per  year.                                                                    
Courtesy  licensees  must submit  a  monthly  report to  the                                                                    
board during  the period of licensure  indicating the number                                                                    
of days  they practiced  during the  month. The  audit found                                                                    
that  the  monthly  reports were  not  being  required.  She                                                                    
continued that the agency's response  was on page 21 and the                                                                    
board's response was on page  23 and both entities concurred                                                                    
with the conclusions and recommendations of the audit.                                                                          
Co-Chair Foster  invited Ms. Chambers  to review  the fiscal                                                                    
note associated with the bill.                                                                                                  
2:52:53 PM                                                                                                                    
SARA    CHAMBERS,    OPERATIONS   MANAGER,    DIVISION    OF                                                                    
CORPORATIONS,   BUSINESS,    and   PROFESSIONAL   LICENSING,                                                                    
DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE,  COMMUNITY AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT,                                                                    
explained  that when  the division's  boards sunset  without                                                                    
renewal  the  operations would  return  to  the division  to                                                                    
manage.  The fiscal  notes did  not reflect  the operational                                                                    
costs  of the  board. She  pointed out  that the  previously                                                                    
published   fiscal  impact   note  from   DCCED  FN1   (CED)                                                                    
appropriated $21.4  thousand for  the board's  expenses. She                                                                    
reported that $19.9 thousand was  allocated for travel costs                                                                    
and the  remaining $1.5 thousand was  allocated for services                                                                    
like  member  stipends,   advertising  public  notices,  and                                                                    
training.  She  offered  that the  boards  were  effectively                                                                    
reducing travel  expenses using  video conferencing  and the                                                                    
actual costs could be lower.                                                                                                    
Co-Chair Foster OPENED Public Testimony for HB 274.                                                                             
2:55:05 PM                                                                                                                    
ALLEN LEVY, CHAIR, BOARD  of PSYCHOLOGISTS AND PSYCHOLOGICAL                                                                    
ASSOCIATE  EXAMINERS  (via teleconference),  concurred  with                                                                    
the  legislative  audit  report.  He favored  the  bill.  He                                                                    
reported  that   the  board  had  already   taken  steps  to                                                                    
implement the recommendations and  looked forward to serving                                                                    
the citizens of the state.                                                                                                      
2:56:16 PM                                                                                                                    
ROBERT  LANE,  ALASKA PSYCHOLOGICAL  ASSOCIATION,  ANCHORAGE                                                                    
(via teleconference),  supported HB  274. He  indicated that                                                                    
the  board had  protected  the citizens  of  Alaska and  had                                                                    
served  them  well.  He   believed  that  board  regulations                                                                    
provided   great   guidance   for  the   practitioners.   He                                                                    
reiterated his support for the legislation.                                                                                     
Co-Chair Foster CLOSED Public Testimony on HB 274.                                                                              
2:57:36 PM                                                                                                                    
Co-Chair Foster relayed that amendments  were due by Friday,                                                                    
February 9, 2018 by 5:00 pm.                                                                                                    
HB  274  was  HEARD  and   HELD  in  committee  for  further                                                                    

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
HB273 Support letters 1.19.18.pdf HFIN 2/6/2018 1:30:00 PM
HB 273
HB273 Sponsor Statement 01.19.18.pdf HFIN 2/6/2018 1:30:00 PM
HB 273
HB273 Legislative Audit 01.19.18.pdf HFIN 2/6/2018 1:30:00 PM
HB 273
HB274 Sponsor Statement 1.29.18.pdf HFIN 2/6/2018 1:30:00 PM
HB 274
HB274 Supporting Document - 2017 Legislative Audit 1.29.18.pdf HFIN 2/6/2018 1:30:00 PM
HB 274
HB275 Sponsor Statement 01.19.18.pdf HFIN 2/6/2018 1:30:00 PM
HB 275
HB275 Legislative Audit 10.11.17.pdf HFIN 2/6/2018 1:30:00 PM
HB 275
HB275 letter of support.pdf HFIN 2/6/2018 1:30:00 PM
HB 275
HB 275 letter of support HFIN.pdf HFIN 2/6/2018 1:30:00 PM
HB 275
HB 275 Board of Massage Audit Followup Memo.pdf HFIN 2/6/2018 1:30:00 PM
HB 275