Legislature(2015 - 2016)CAPITOL 120

04/02/2015 01:00 PM House JUDICIARY

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* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
-- Will be Continued from 4/1/15 Meeting --
+ Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled TELECONFERENCED
Moved CSHCR 1(CRA) Out of Committee
-- Public Testimony --
Moved CSHJR 3(CRA) Out of Committee
-- Public Testimony --
        HJR  3-CONGRESS:NATIVE TRIBAL JURIS. & AUTHORITY                                                                    
2:34:15 PM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR LEDOUX announced that the  first order of business would be                                                               
HOUSE  JOINT  RESOLUTION NO.  3,  Urging  members of  the  Alaska                                                               
delegation   to  the   United   States   Congress  to   introduce                                                               
substantially  similar legislation  to the  Alaska Safe  Families                                                               
and Villages  Act of 2013;  urging the United States  Congress to                                                               
affirm  the criminal  jurisdiction of  Alaska tribal  governments                                                               
over  tribal members  within the  boundaries  of their  villages;                                                               
urging  the  United States  Congress  to  cooperate with  tribes'                                                               
efforts  to  transfer  Native  land   to  trust;  and  supporting                                                               
multilateral negotiations  between tribal  governments, nontribal                                                               
municipalities,  and   the  state  and  federal   governments  to                                                               
delineate clearly tribal  geographical jurisdictions. [Before the                                                               
committee was CS for HJR 3(CRA)]                                                                                                
2:34:35 PM                                                                                                                    
TIMOTHY CLARK,  Staff, Representative Bryce Edgmon,  Alaska State                                                               
Legislature, [said he was available for questions].                                                                             
2:35:45 PM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE  GRUENBERG expressed  his  understanding that  the                                                               
purpose  of the  [Congressional] bill  was to  extend the  Alaska                                                               
Safe Families  and Villages Act  of 2013 to throughout  the state                                                               
and not just to Metlakatla.                                                                                                     
2:36:35 PM                                                                                                                    
MR. CLARK  responded that the  original legislation  was directed                                                               
at Alaska Native villages beyond  Metlakatla, and the version the                                                               
[113th Congress,  2d Session, Senate  Report 113-260]  deals with                                                               
was simply  noting changes made  by the  sponsor as the  bill was                                                               
being considered in the 113th Congress.                                                                                         
2:37:14 PM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR  LEDOUX advised  Representative Gruenberg  that it  appears                                                               
the Alaska  Safe Families and Villages  Act of 2014 did  not pass                                                               
Congress.   The purpose of  CSHJR 3(CRA)  is to urge  Congress to                                                               
take  up  the  bill  up  again,  and  in  particular  the  Alaska                                                               
delegation,  and support  the substantially  similar  bill to  be                                                               
introduced in this Congress, she explained.                                                                                     
MR. CLARK agreed with Chair LeDoux assessment.                                                                                  
2:37:47 PM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE GRUENBERG  said his focus  is on U.S.  Senate Bill                                                               
1474, as  its intent  is to  take the  previous Act,  which would                                                               
only  have applied  to Metlakatla,  and make  it apply  to Indian                                                               
tribes throughout the State of Alaska.                                                                                          
MR.  CLARK  answered  that  his  understanding  of  the  original                                                               
Senator Mark Begich legislation  was dealing with provisions such                                                               
as  these  wherein  there were  incremental  increases  of  local                                                               
tribal  jurisdiction   in  Alaska  tribal  villages   outside  of                                                               
Metlakatla.   He explained  that due  to Metlakatla  being Indian                                                               
Country,  the  authorities  are already  much  greater  than  the                                                               
authorities enjoyed by Alaska Native  tribes where Indian Country                                                               
does not exist.                                                                                                                 
2:39:17 PM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE  GRUENBERG  surmised  it  is  to  extend  previous                                                               
federal  law  throughout Alaska  to  other  tribes that  met  the                                                               
MR.  CLARK answered  that  Indian Law  can  be very  complicated,                                                               
however,  in parts  of the  country where  Indian Country  itself                                                               
does not  exist, Congress nevertheless has  the authority through                                                               
legislation to  grant certain authorities that  normally would be                                                               
possible only under Indian  Law in the form of an  Act.  The U.S.                                                               
Senate  Bill  1474  was  an  attempt  to  modestly  increase  the                                                               
authority of  Alaska Native villages  over certain  crimes within                                                               
the boundaries of their villages.                                                                                               
REPRESENTATIVE  GRUENBERG  opined  that   he  had  requested  the                                                               
[federal] committee report as the  reports often provide the core                                                               
source for determining  the legislative history of the  bill.  He                                                               
said the minority tends to focus  on points of controversy and in                                                               
reviewing the report,  there were no minority  views.  Currently,                                                               
Senator  Lisa   Murkowski  is  a   co-sponsor  and   Senator  Dan                                                               
Sullivan's position is unknown.                                                                                                 
2:42:29 PM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE LYNN  referred to a  bill from the  past regarding                                                               
casinos  and opined  that Metlakatla  is  the only  place in  the                                                               
State of Alaska that could have  a casino.  He questioned whether                                                               
HJR 3  and the  attendant bill  in Congress  were to  pass, would                                                               
that open up every Indian village to have a casino.                                                                             
MR.  CLARK responded  "No," that  would not  be the  case as  the                                                               
federal  legislation  is  proscribed  in what  it  describes  and                                                               
focuses simply  on expanded criminal jurisdiction  within village                                                               
2:43:42 PM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE GRUENBERG pointed to the  U.S. Senate Bill 1474 in                                                               
each committee member's packet.   He offered that the new section                                                               
is in italics and he does not believe it has to do with gaming.                                                                 
CHAIR LEDOUX advised that public  testimony was closed during the                                                               
last committee meeting.                                                                                                         
2:45:03 PM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE  GRUENBERG referred  to  {U.S.  Senate Bill  1474,                                                               
Sec. 2, Findings and Purpose] page 17, lines 10-17, which read:                                                                 
          (b) PURPOSES - The purposes of this Act are -                                                                         
               (1) to improve the delivery of justice in                                                                        
     Alaska Native villages by -                                                                                                
                    (A) encouraging the State and Indian                                                                        
          tribes to enter into intergovernmental agreements                                                                     
          relating to the enforcement and adjudication of                                                                       
          State laws relating to drug and alcohol offenses;                                                                     
                    (B) supporting Indian tribes in the                                                                         
          State in the enforcement and adjudication of                                                                          
          tribal laws relating to child abuse and neglect,                                                                      
          domestic violence, and drug and alcohol offenses;                                                                     
               (2)     to    enhance     coordination    and                                                                    
     communication among  Federal, State, tribal,  and local                                                                    
     law enforcement agencies.                                                                                                  
REPRESENTATIVE  GRUENBERG commented  that  it was  far away  from                                                               
gaming issues.                                                                                                                  
2:45:49 PM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE  FOSTER  moved  to  report CSHJR  3,  version  29-                                                               
LS0354\H, out  of committee  with individual  recommendations and                                                               
the accompanying  fiscal note.   There being no  objection, CSHJR
3(CRA) was moved from the House Judiciary Standing Committee.                                                                   
2:46:24 PM                                                                                                                    
The committee took an at-ease from 2:46 to 2:49 p.m.                                                                            

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
HCR1 Additional Documentation - memo from AG.docx HJUD 4/2/2015 1:00:00 PM
HJR 3 Additional Documentation--Senate Report 113 on Alaska Safe Families and Villages Act.pdf HJUD 4/2/2015 1:00:00 PM