Legislature(2009 - 2010)CAPITOL 120

04/11/2010 09:00 AM JUDICIARY


Download Mp3. <- Right click and save file as

Audio Topic
09:13:08 AM Start
09:13:23 AM SB284
09:48:12 AM Adjourn
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
-- Recessed to a Call of the Chair --
-- Continued from 04/10/10 --
+= SB 284 CAMPAIGN EXPENDITURES TELECONFERENCED
Heard & Held
                 SB 284 - CAMPAIGN EXPENDITURES                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
9:13:23 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR RAMRAS announced  that the only order of  business would be                                                               
CS  FOR SENATE  BILL  NO.  284(FIN), "An  Act  relating to  state                                                               
election  campaigns,  the duties  of  the  Alaska Public  Offices                                                               
Commission,  the reporting  and  disclosure  of expenditures  and                                                               
independent  expenditures,   the  filing  of  reports,   and  the                                                               
identification  of  certain   communications  in  state  election                                                               
campaigns; prohibiting expenditures  and contributions by foreign                                                               
nationals  in state  elections;  and providing  for an  effective                                                               
date."   [Before the committee  was CSSB 284(FIN), as  amended on                                                               
4/10/10.]                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GRUENBERG,  referring to  action that  occurred on                                                               
4/10/10,  announced that  after further  consideration, he  would                                                               
have  preferred   to  have  voted   "no"  on  the   amendment  to                                                               
Amendment 3, and  to have  voted "yes" on  Amendment 3;  "I think                                                               
'three'  is  the  appropriate  number [to  have  in  proposed  AS                                                           
15.13.090(a)(2)(C)]".                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
9:15:15 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE LYNN made  a motion to adopt  Amendment 5, labeled                                                               
26-LS1448\P.10,  Bullard, 4/5/10,  and  indicated  that he  would                                                               
also be seeking to amend Amendment 5; Amendment 5 read:                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
     Page 8, lines 14 - 16:                                                                                                     
          Delete "10 days after an independent expenditure                                                                      
     has  been  made.  However, an  independent  expenditure                                                                    
     that exceeds $250 and that  is made within nine days of                                                                    
     an  election shall  be reported  to the  commission not                                                                    
     later than"                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HOLMES objected for the purpose of discussion.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  LYNN indicated  that  Amendment 5  - which  would                                                               
alter proposed AS 15.13.110(g) -  addresses the deadline by which                                                               
an  independent  expenditure  report  is due,  changing  it  from                                                               
either 10 days or 24 hours -  depending on the amount and when it                                                               
was expended -  to just 24 hours after the  expenditure was made;                                                               
and that  his amendment to  Amendment 5  would be to  change that                                                               
deadline to 48 hours after the expenditure was made.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR RAMRAS,  after ascertaining that there  were no objections,                                                               
[although  no motion  had been  made] announced  that Amendment 5                                                               
was so amended.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  LYNN  indicated  that Amendment  5,  as  amended,                                                               
would provide  for better  disclosure to occur  in a  more timely                                                               
manner.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
9:17:35 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  RAMRAS  surmised  that  Amendment  5,  as  amended,  would                                                               
pertain to  all forms of  [political] advertizing  including that                                                               
which has been paid for  by small groups who, research indicates,                                                               
generally  don't  use  television  much as  a  medium  for  their                                                               
advertisements.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE LYNN said  he, too, assumes that  it would pertain                                                               
to all  forms, but opined  that it shouldn't make  any difference                                                               
whether an  advertisement is paid  for by a  small group or  by a                                                               
large group.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR RAMRAS  indicated that  it makes a  difference to  him, and                                                               
thus he opposes Amendment 5,  as amended, as being too burdensome                                                               
on small  groups and  groups that are  advertizing for  the first                                                               
time  and therefore  aren't familiar  with Alaska  Public Offices                                                               
Commission (APOC) rules and  reporting requirements, opining that                                                               
large groups  are more  capable of  understanding such  rules and                                                               
requirements.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  LYNN disagreed,  pointing out  that a  legislator                                                               
such as  himself is essentially  [a small  group of one]  and yet                                                               
nonetheless  still  has an  obligation  to  become familiar  with                                                               
those rules  and reporting requirements regardless  of whether it                                                               
is his/her first time running for office.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  RAMRAS  asked what  the  penalty  would be  for  violating                                                               
[proposed AS 15.13.110(g)].                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
9:20:19 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
JOHN PTACIN, Assistant Attorney  General, Labor and State Affairs                                                               
Section,  Civil Division  (Anchorage), Department  of Law  (DOL),                                                               
explained that there would  be a fine of $50 a  day for every day                                                               
the expenditure report  was late, and the violator  would have to                                                               
work with  the APOC  to rectify  the situation.   In  response to                                                               
comments and  a question,  he pointed out  that these  statutes -                                                               
both  existing  and  proposed -  pertain  to  a  complaint-driven                                                               
system,  so someone  would have  to  notice and  complain that  a                                                               
group   was  out   of  compliance   with  the   APOC's  reporting                                                               
requirements, and then the APOC would investigate.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
9:23:28 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR HOLLIS FRENCH, Alaska State  Legislature, as chair of the                                                               
Senate Judiciary Standing  Committee, sponsor of SB  284, said he                                                               
appreciates the motive behind Amendment  5, as amended, but feels                                                               
that the  current language of  proposed AS 15.13.110(g)  offers a                                                               
fair approach  while still allowing  voters to  obtain up-to-date                                                               
information right up until just prior to the election.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
MR. PTACIN,  in response to  a question, indicated that  the APOC                                                               
would be providing the reporting forms.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  GRUENBERG  offered  his  understanding  that  the                                                               
proposed  reporting  requirements  would  be the  same  for  both                                                               
individual candidates and groups.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  HOLMES removed  her  objection to  the motion  to                                                               
adopt Amendment 5, as amended.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR RAMRAS objected to the motion.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
A roll call  vote was taken.  Representative Lynn  voted in favor                                                               
of Amendment  5, as amended.   Representatives Gruenberg, Holmes,                                                               
Dahlstrom,   Herron,  Gatto,   and  Ramras   voted  against   it.                                                               
Therefore, Amendment 5, as amended, failed by a vote of 1-6.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
9:26:09 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR RAMRAS made a motion to adopt Amendment 6, labeled 26-                                                                    
LS1448\P.20, Bullard, 4/10/10, which read:                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     Page 3, line 18:                                                                                                           
          Delete "to the person that exceed $100 in the                                                                     
     aggregate in a year"                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
     Page 3, line 21, following "name":                                                                                     
          Insert "and address of the contributor and, for                                                                   
     contributions in excess of $50  in the aggregate during                                                                
     a calendar year, the name"                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GRUENBERG objected for the purpose of discussion.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR RAMRAS  explained that  Amendment 6  would decrease  - from                                                               
$100  to $50  - the  yearly  aggregate amount  that triggers  the                                                               
requirement  that the  principal occupation  and employer  of the                                                               
contributor be disclosed.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE GRUENBERG removed his objection.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR RAMRAS, noting that there were no other objections,                                                                       
announced that Amendment 6 was adopted.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
9:27:27 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR RAMRAS made a motion to adopt Amendment 7, labeled 26-                                                                    
LS1448\P.21, Bullard, 4/10/10, which read:                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     Page 8, following line 11:                                                                                                 
     Insert a new subsection to read:                                                                                           
          "(e) Contributors required to be identified under                                                                     
     (a)(2)(C) of  this section must  be listed in  order of                                                                    
     the amount  of their contributions. If  more than three                                                                    
     of the  largest contributors to  a person paying  for a                                                                    
     communication contribute equal  amounts, the person may                                                                    
     select which  of the contributors  of equal  amounts to                                                                    
     identify under  (a)(2)(C) of this  section. In  no case                                                                    
     shall a person be required  to identify more than three                                                                    
     contributors under (a)(2)(C) of this section."                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HOLMES objected for the purpose of discussion.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  RAMRAS explained  that Amendment  7 addresses  his concern                                                               
that the stipulation  that the information of no  more than three                                                               
contributors need  be disclosed  be statutory rather  than merely                                                               
regulatory.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HOLMES removed her objection.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR RAMRAS announced that Amendment 7 was adopted.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
9:28:47 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  HERRON  made  a  motion  to  adopt  Amendment  8,                                                               
labeled 26-LS1448\P.22, Bullard, 4/10/10, which read:                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
     Page 5, line 9:                                                                                                            
          Delete "a new section"                                                                                                
          Insert "new sections"                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
     Page 6, following line 7:                                                                                                  
          Insert a new section to read:                                                                                         
          "Sec. 15.13.069. Certain expenditures that comply                                                                   
     with    charitable    gaming   provisions    permitted.                                                                  
     Notwithstanding  another  provision  of this  title,  a                                                                    
     charitable  gaming   permittee  that  is   a  qualified                                                                    
     organization  under   AS 05.15.690  may  use   the  net                                                                    
     proceeds of  a raffle  or lottery to  make expenditures                                                                    
     for the purposes permitted under AS 05.15.150(a)(3)."                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HOLMES objected for the purpose of discussion.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HERRON offered his  understanding that Amendment 8                                                               
would allow a  charitable gaming permittee to  expend proceeds on                                                               
a political action committee (PAC), for example.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
MR.   PTACIN,  in   response  to   a  question,   confirmed  that                                                               
Amendment 8  would  clarify  that   issue  via  statute,  thereby                                                               
overriding any regulation or advisory opinion to the contrary.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
[In response  to a question/concern,  members and  staff observed                                                               
that Amendment  8 would  insert a  new section  of statute  in AS                                                               
15.13 - a  new Section .069 -  and not just add  its proposed new                                                               
language to proposed AS 15.13.068.]                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HOLMES removed her objection.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR RAMRAS announced that Amendment 8 was adopted.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
9:32:06 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HOLMES made  a motion to adopt  Amendment 9, which                                                               
read [original punctuation provided]:                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
     Page 8, line 4, following "transmitted":                                                                                   
          Delete "solely"                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
     Page 8, lines 4-5, following "audio media:                                                                                 
       Insert "and in the communication that includes an                                                                        
     audio component"                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
     Page 8, lines 7-11:                                                                                                        
          Delete all material                                                                                                   
               Insert "This communication was paid for by                                                                       
     (person's name),  whose top contributors are  (the name                                                                    
     of  the largest  contributors  to the  person under  AS                                                                    
     15.13.090(a)(2)(C))."                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR RAMRAS objected for the purpose of discussion.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE   HOLMES   explained   that  Amendment   9   would                                                               
significantly  shorten  what  must be  stated  in  communications                                                               
transmitted via  audio or  those that have  an audio  component -                                                               
such as television advertisements -  and thereby rectify the fact                                                               
that  currently  some   of  what's  required  to   be  stated  is                                                               
duplicative,  with  the  name  of   the  person  paying  for  the                                                               
communication  being  stated  in  each of  the  three  currently-                                                               
required sentences.  Under Amendment  9, proposed AS 15.13.090(d)                                                               
would  once again  also apply  to television  advertisements, but                                                               
only  one sentence  would be  required to  be read  aloud and  it                                                               
would  include the  person's name  and his/her  top contributors,                                                               
but it  would no longer  have to include the  principal officer's                                                               
title in situations where the  person is other than an individual                                                               
or  a candidate.   She  surmised that  under Amendment  9, what's                                                               
required  to  be  stated more  closely  mirrors  what  individual                                                               
candidates  must state  in their  communications transmitted  via                                                               
audio or those that have an audio component.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR RAMRAS  expressed favor with shortening  what's required to                                                               
be stated  during radio advertisements,  but, citing  the expense                                                               
of  television   advertising,  expressed  disfavor   with  having                                                               
proposed    AS   15.13.090(d)    again   apply    to   television                                                               
advertisements.    He  indicated  that   he  would  therefore  be                                                               
offering an amendment to Amendment 9.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
The committee took an at-ease from 9:35 a.m. to 9:36 a.m.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
9:36:19 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR RAMRAS  made a motion to  amend Amendment 9, to  delete its                                                               
proposed  changes to  page 8,  lines 4,  and page  8, lines  4-5;                                                               
under  the  amendment  to   Amendment 9,  though,  Amendment  9's                                                               
proposed change to  page 8, lines 7-11, would remain.   He opined                                                               
that  having  to  disclose  information   verbally  is  far  more                                                               
appropriate for  radio advertisements  than it is  for television                                                               
advertisements.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HOLMES objected to the amendment to Amendment 9.                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR FRENCH indicated that he  is amenable to having what must                                                               
be  read  aloud  significantly  shortened,  but  feels  that  the                                                               
requirements  of proposed  AS 15.13.090(d)  should  apply to  all                                                               
forms  of  communication.    This  would  mirror  the  disclosure                                                               
requirements  of individual  candidates  who,  regardless of  how                                                               
well-funded they may  or may not be, must  have their disclosures                                                               
read  aloud even  in  television advertisements.    He urged  the                                                               
committee to keep the disclosure requirements the same for all.                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  RAMRAS, in  response to  a  question, again  spoke of  the                                                               
expense of  advertising and  the length  of time  it can  take to                                                               
read  a  disclosure  statement   aloud,  noting  that  television                                                               
advertisements  cost  far more  than  radio  advertisements.   He                                                               
expressed concern that  the bill would be more  burdensome on and                                                               
more costly to small groups/entities than large ones.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE   GRUENBERG   opined   that   the   amendment   to                                                               
Amendment 9  would  gut  Amendment  9,  and  predicted  that  its                                                               
adoption would  result in groups/entities  being able  to conceal                                                               
important  information when  they use  television advertisements.                                                               
Regardless of  what side of the  issue or which candidate  that a                                                               
group  favors,  what's  at  stake  for the  public  is  far  more                                                               
important  than   the  minor  cost  associated   with  reading  a                                                               
disclosure aloud - particularly given  that it's the large, well-                                                               
funded    groups/entities   that    tend   to    use   television                                                               
advertisements - and  the information that ought  to be disclosed                                                               
may  well make  a  difference to  the voter.    The amendment  to                                                               
Amendment 9 would allow voters  to be misled.  Furthermore, there                                                               
are people who  could benefit from having  disclosures read aloud                                                               
during  television advertisements:   the  blind -  who listen  to                                                               
television rather than watch it;  the visually impaired - who may                                                               
not be able to read the  written disclosure; and those who listen                                                               
to the television while they do  other tasks - which is what many                                                               
people do  whenever the commercials  come on.  In  conclusion, he                                                               
offered his hope that Amendment 9 would remain unamended.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE   GATTO  pointed   out   that  every   [political]                                                               
television  advertisement  is  essentially  going  to  relay  two                                                               
things:   the  first, which  he  characterized as  minor, is  the                                                               
message itself;  and the second,  which he characterized  as more                                                               
important, is  who is paying  for that  message.  He  opined that                                                               
it's important  for the information  about who is paying  for the                                                               
message to  be clearer  than the message  itself, adding  that he                                                               
would therefore be supporting [those  who oppose the amendment to                                                               
Amendment 9.]                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HOLMES said it's  important for groups/entities to                                                               
be held to the same standards  as candidates, who must have their                                                               
disclosures read aloud even  in television advertisements, adding                                                               
that she therefore opposes the amendment to Amendment 9.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  LYNN expressed  opposition  to  the amendment  to                                                               
Amendment   9,  surmising   that  it   would  result   in  larger                                                               
groups/entities being able to avoid proper disclosure.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
9:46:14 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
A roll call  vote was taken.   Representatives Dahlstrom, Herron,                                                               
and  Ramras voted  in  favor  of the  amendment  to Amendment  9.                                                               
Representatives   Holmes,  Gatto,   Lynn,  and   Gruenberg  voted                                                               
against it.  Therefore, the amendment  to Amendment 9 failed by a                                                               
vote of 3-4.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR RAMRAS relayed  that he would be  maintaining his objection                                                               
to Amendment 9.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
A  roll  call  vote  was taken.    Representatives  Gatto,  Lynn,                                                               
Gruenberg,   and  Holmes   voted   in  favor   of  Amendment   9.                                                               
Representatives Dahlstrom,  Herron, and Ramras voted  against it.                                                               
Therefore, Amendment 9 was adopted by a vote of 4-3.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
[CSSB 284, as amended on 4/10/10 and 4/11/10, was held over.]                                                                   

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
SB284 Final Amendment pkg. 4.11.10.pdf HJUD 4/11/2010 9:00:00 AM
SB 284