Legislature(2003 - 2004)
04/25/2003 03:30 PM House L&C
* first hearing in first committee of referral
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
HB 232-HOMER MERCURY CLASSIC/ GAMING PRIZE LIMIT Number 0527 CHAIR ANDERSON announced that the next order of business would be HOUSE BILL NO. 232, "An Act relating to mercury classics; and providing for an effective date." Number 0556 REPRESENTATIVE PAUL SEATON, Alaska State Legislature, as sponsor of HB 232, explained that it establishes the Homer Mercury Classic, which will be operated and administered by the [Homer chapter of the] Boys and Girls Clubs of the Kenai Peninsula ("Boys and Girls Club.") The bill is titled Homer because that's where [the thermometer readings] will be taken. The 300 members of the Boys and Girls Club have looked at a number of fundraisers; they have established a history of working with sophisticated weather equipment that had been certified and would be on the top of their building. This would be similar to the Nenana Ice Classic, he explained. Tickets will be sold for $2. The winner in the fall [would guess] the date and time when the temperature first drops to 15 degrees, and [similarly] in the spring, [the winner would guess] when the temperature reaches 55 degrees. The [club members] are working with GLOBE [Global Learning and Observation to Benefit the Environment], a nationwide educational program of weather-related information, which includes NASA [National Aeronautics and Space Administration] and a number of other organizations. REPRESENTATIVE CRAWFORD asked if the temperatures are on the Fahrenheit or Celsius scales. REPRESENTATIVE SEATON replied Fahrenheit. Number 0658 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG asked Representative Seaton if he has been in contact with the Fairbanks Chamber of Commerce about whether this game encroaches on its [mercury] classic. REPRESENTATIVE SEATON replied that the Fairbanks [Chamber of Commerce has a mercury] hasn't operated for years. REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG noted that Fairbanks has an exclusive right in statute to the classic. Therefore, whether the Homer Mercury Classic would encroach on the Fairbanks Mercury classic would be important information to have before the bill gets to the [House] floor. He asked about the effective date of January 1, 2004. REPRESENTATIVE SEATON replied that the Boys and Girls Club was not ready to operate [the classic] this fall, so next spring would be the first occasion [to guess when the temperature] reaches 55 degrees. REPRESENTATIVE GUTTENBERG commented that either temperature is possible between the spring and the fall. He noted that he was also wondering about Representative Seaton's dialogue with the Fairbanks Chamber of Commerce. Number 0840 LAUREN RADCLIFFE, Staff to Representative Paul Seaton, Alaska State Legislature, explained that Jane Tollefsrud, who is prepared to testify, has spoken to the Fairbanks Chamber of Commerce who can currently operate this mercury classic. She related her understanding that the chamber does not currently operate it and never has. JANE TOLLEFSRUD, Assistant Director, Homer Boys and Girls Club; Coordinator, Homer Mercury Classic, said she tried to pursue the Fairbanks aspect of this, but none of the employees of the Fairbanks Chamber of Commerce with whom she spoke had ever heard of it. She added that the Homer Mercury Classic revolves around the first time the temperature falls to 15 degrees in the fall and the first time the temperature reaches 55 degrees in the spring. Number 0924 REPRESENTATIVE DAHLSTROM inquired as to how much revenue the classic will generate. REPRESENTATIVE SEATON said he had no idea because it will depend on how many tickets the 300 members will sell at $2 a piece. [The Boys and Girls Club] will receive half of the money collected. REPRESENTATIVE GATTO asked how fall with be defined, explaining that he was concerned about double payouts. REPRESENTATIVE SEATON noted that the temperature is monitored every hour, continuously. Although he said he wasn't sure when the period starts for measuring, he said he offered to pass this point on for inclusion in the regulations so it's clear that it's the first time the temperature reaches the specified temperature. Number 1018 REPRESENTATIVE GUTTENBERG said that regardless of who [held the exclusive right to a mercury classic], there is no letter of understanding or agreement with the current [authorized group], this proposed mercury classic is placed in a different position. REPRESENTATIVE SEATON pointed out that the Homer Mercury Classic is identified by name specifically in the bill. MS. TOLLEFSRUD said her organization would be more specific on dates about the first time [the temperature rose to 55 degrees] after June 1 or before June 1. Data is collected hourly via computer, so that [time and date] can't be altered. CHAIR ANDERSON, upon determining no one else wished to testify, closed public testimony. Number 1117 REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG moved to report HB 232 out of committee with individual recommendations and the accompanying fiscal notes. There being no objection, HB 232 was reported out of the House Labor and Commerce Standing Committee.