Legislature(2003 - 2004)

03/05/2003 08:43 AM FSH

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
HB 104-PAYMENT OF FISHERY BUSINESS TAX                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEATON announced  that the next order of  business would be                                                               
HOUSE BILL NO. 104, "An Act  relating to payment of the fisheries                                                               
business  tax and  to security  for collection  of the  fisheries                                                               
business tax."                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Number 2906                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR   GARY   STEVENS,   Alaska   State   Legislature;   Joint                                                               
Legislative  Salmon Industry  Task  Force, sponsor  of [HB  104],                                                               
noted that this is a bill  that would help to develop the economy                                                               
of the fishing  industry.  He said the bill  is geared to attract                                                               
the  small   processors  and   to  hopefully   expand  processing                                                               
operations in  Alaska.   He pointed out  that the  fiscal impacts                                                               
are minimal.   He mentioned that  this is an issue  of investment                                                               
and of economic  development and is geared  toward attracting new                                                               
business development.   He added  that all of the  penalties that                                                               
are currently  in the law  will continue to  apply.  He  said the                                                               
department  [Department of  Revenue] has  looked at  this closely                                                               
and has indicated  that out of some 500 licenses,  only about one                                                               
dozen would opt for this; so this  is a small piece that may help                                                               
small processors.  He added  that large processors would probably                                                               
not  be interested  in  paying  their taxes  on  a monthly  basis                                                               
because they  would rather  keep their money  while they  can and                                                               
pay it when they have to.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Number 2836                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KOTT  moved  to   adopt  the  proposed  committee                                                               
substitute  (CS)  for  HB 104,  Version  23-LS0533\H,  Utermohle,                                                               
3/3/03,  for  the  purposes  of   discussion.    There  being  no                                                               
objection, Version H was before the committee.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
The committee took a brief at-ease from 9:40 to 9:42 a.m.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  GARY STEVENS  reiterated  that  big processors  probably                                                               
would  not take  advantage of  this, but  the smaller  processors                                                               
operating  on  the  edge,  without  large  amounts  of  money  or                                                               
property  to put  up  for  liens, might  take  advantage of  this                                                               
option.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR SEATON asked  if this bill mirrored a bill  that was passed                                                               
last year  - a  bill that  allowed people  to continue  to export                                                               
fish that wasn't processed within the state.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR GARY STEVENS confirmed that this was the case.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Number 2750                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHRIS  GARCIA, Fisherman,  Cook Inlet  Fishermen's Fund,  said he                                                               
thought the  bill was good but  he was confused by  a few things.                                                               
He referred  to page  1, line  8, which  read "an  applicant that                                                               
does not  process a fishery  resource in  the state may  elect to                                                               
avoid  the requirements  of (a)  and (b)  of this  section".   He                                                               
asked why  an applicant would  apply if  he/she was not  going to                                                               
process fish.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  SEATON replied  that the  language was  from a  bill which                                                               
passed last year  that allowed people who didn't  process fish in                                                               
the state to use this new  provision of bonding and paying by the                                                               
15th of the month.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Number 2750                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MR. GARCIA  said he was  definitely not  opposed to the  bill but                                                               
questioned the redundancy of line 8 on page 1.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  GARY STEVENS  said  that the  language,  "that does  not                                                               
process a fishery resource in the state", was being deleted.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. GARCIA said that solves his question.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Number 2630                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  WILSON  moved to  report  CSHB  104, Version  23-                                                               
LS0533\H,  Utermohle, 3/3/03,  out of  committee with  individual                                                               
recommendations and  the accompanying  fiscal note.   There being                                                               
no objection, CSHB  104(FSH) was reported from  the House Special                                                               
Committee on Fisheries.                                                                                                         

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