Legislature(2009 - 2010)CAPITOL 106

03/30/2010 08:00 AM House STATE AFFAIRS

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08:07:35 AM Start
08:08:04 AM Overview(s): Division of Elections
08:45:23 AM SB43
09:17:22 AM HB241
09:38:51 AM HB128|| HCR8
09:47:40 AM Adjourn
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
+ Overview: Division of Elections TELECONFERENCED
Moved HCS SB 43(STA) Out of Committee
Moved CSHB 241(STA) Out of Committee
Heard & Held
Heard & Held
+ Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled TELECONFERENCED
           SB  43-SECOND VERSE OF ALASKA'S STATE SONG                                                                       
8:45:23 AM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR LYNN announced  that the next order of  business was SENATE                                                               
BILL  NO. 43,  "An  Act adding  a second  verse  to the  official                                                               
Alaska state song."                                                                                                             
8:46:14 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE  SEATON   moved  to  adopt  the   House  committee                                                               
substitute  (HCS)  for  SB   43,  Version  26-LS0259\R,  Bullard,                                                               
3/29/10, as a work draft.                                                                                                       
8:46:24 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE PETERSEN objected for discussion purposes.                                                                       
8:46:30 AM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR  LINDA  MENARD,  Alaska State  Legislature,  as  sponsor,                                                               
explained the  proposed changes in Version  26-LS0259\R, Bullard,                                                               
3/29/10.   She  said there  are  three small  changes, which  are                                                               
proposed in response to concerns  about copyright infringement in                                                               
language in the  second verse of the song, "Alaska's  Flag."  She                                                               
directed attention to  Section 1, beginning on line  5, where "to                                                           
the first  verse" was added  to clarify  that the first  verse of                                                           
the  song was  composed by  [Marie  Drake], and  the phrase  "and                                                           
words to the  second verse by Carol Beery Davis"  was added.  She                                                           
noted  that beginning  on page  2,  line 7,  "multiple words  and                                                               
punctuations  have been  changed to  more accurately  reflect the                                                               
copyright's  version of  the second  verse of  the Alaska's  Flag                                                               
song."   She explained  that these changes  were made  to correct                                                               
oversights made by the bill drafters at the bill's conception.                                                                  
SENATOR MENARD directed attention to  Section 2, on page 2, lines                                                               
19-22, which read as follows:                                                                                                   
        *Sec.2. AS 44.09.040 is amended by adding a new                                                                       
     subsection to read:                                                                                                        
               (b) A copy of "Alaska's Flag" produced for                                                                       
     public  use must  have  the  following attribution  and                                                                    
     notice:   "copyright  University of  Alaska Foundation,                                                                    
     nonprofit use permitted, all other rights reserved."                                                                       
SENATOR MENARD  then reviewed  each punctuation  change [provided                                                               
in a  handout in the committee  packet] to the second  verse, the                                                               
result of which is that the  second verse, on page 2, lines 7-18,                                                               
of Version R, read as follows:                                                                                                  
               A Native lad chose the Dipper's stars                                                                        
               For Alaska's flag that there be no bars                                                                      
               Among our culture. Let it be known                                                                           
               Through years the Native's past has grown                                                                    
               To share life's treasures, hand in hand,                                                                     
               To keep Alaska our Great-Land;                                                                               
               We love the northern midnight sky,                                                                           
               The mountains, lakes and streams nearby.                                                                     
               The great North Star with its steady light                                                                   
               Will guide all cultures, clear and bright,                                                                   
               With nature's flag to Alaskans dear,                                                                         
               The simple flag of the last frontier.                                                                        
8:48:30 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE P.  WILSON directed  attention to the  phrasing of                                                               
the second  verse, on page  2, line 9, and  said she is  not sure                                                               
how the  phrasing fits with  the music,  because it ends  "in the                                                               
CHAIR LYNN responded  that it is common in poetry  for a sentence                                                               
to end in the middle of a line.                                                                                                 
REPRESENTATIVE P. WILSON said she  knows that, but questioned how                                                               
it would be sung.                                                                                                               
8:49:50 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE GATTO asked  if there is a  difference between the                                                               
word "native" and the term "Alaska Native."                                                                                     
8:50:00 AM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR MENARD said she does not believe there is.                                                                              
REPRESENTATIVE  GATTO  said his  children  were  born in  Alaska,                                                               
thus,  they are  native  Alaskan; however,  they  are not  Alaska                                                               
Native.   He said  he does  not see the  distinction made  in the                                                               
proposed legislation.                                                                                                           
8:50:42 AM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR MENARD  said this would  be an argument  about semantics.                                                               
Notwithstanding  that, she  said considering  the date  the verse                                                               
was written, the term Natives refers to Alaska Natives.                                                                         
CHAIR LYNN  said the  controversy over  the term  Native American                                                               
has  existed for  years, but  is "probably  outside the  scope of                                                               
this particular bill."                                                                                                          
8:51:52 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE GATTO  said he disagrees.   He said  the sponsor's                                                               
intent was  not to honor "her  children, or my children,  or your                                                               
children."   He asked  whose children the  sponsor did  intend to                                                               
SENATOR  MENARD stated  that  her intent  is to  not  get into  a                                                               
REPRESENTATIVE GATTO opined, "This is the place for debate."                                                                    
8:52:22 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE GRUENBERG  said he would  impose a point  of order                                                               
to state that Representative Gatto is harassing the witness.                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE GATTO objected to the point of order.                                                                            
8:52:30 AM                                                                                                                    
The committee took an at-ease from 8:52:31 AM to 8:53:00 AM.                                                                
8:53:50 AM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR LYNN relayed  that in House Records' minutes,  a lower case                                                               
"n"  is used  to  distinguish a  person born  in  Alaska but  not                                                               
Alaska Native, and a capital "N"  is used to distinguish a person                                                               
of Native descent in Alaska.                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE GATTO said he had not heard of that before.                                                                      
8:54:01 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE JOHNSON directed attention  to Section 2 and asked                                                               
if it is  a new section.  He said  he wants to know if  he was to                                                               
hand out the  words to Alaska's Flag,  and he did so  not as part                                                               
of  a  nonprofit  affiliation,  then  he  would  be  violating  a                                                               
8:54:28 AM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR MENARD answered  no.  She offered  her understanding that                                                               
after  20 years,  the copyright  "pretty  much goes  away."   She                                                               
said, "This was 1987, so we've had the twenty years go by."                                                                     
8:55:33 AM                                                                                                                    
ALPHEUS   BULLARD,    Attorney,   Legislative    Legal   Counsel,                                                               
Legislative  Legal  and  Research Services,  Legislative  Affairs                                                               
Agency, in  response to  Representative Johnson's  question, said                                                               
he  thinks  if  the handout  Representative  Johnson  distributed                                                               
included  the   attribution,  "copyright  University   of  Alaska                                                               
Foundation, nonprofit use permitted,  all other rights reserved",                                                               
then he thinks "the law would be satisfied."                                                                                    
CHAIR LYNN  asked if that  would apply to  any other song  with a                                                               
MR. BULLARD answered that he does not know.                                                                                     
8:56:19 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE JOHNSON proffered that  any other song is probably                                                               
connected  with the  American Society  of Composers,  Authors and                                                               
Publishers (ASCAP) or Broadcast  Music, Inc. (BMI), organizations                                                               
that charge  radio, television stations,  and "everyone  who uses                                                               
jingles" and  then distribute the  money to the authors  of those                                                               
jingles.  He said he wants  to ensure that including Section 2 of                                                               
the bill would not result in  people being subjected to ASCAP and                                                               
BMI fines.                                                                                                                      
8:57:49 AM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR MENARD, in response to  Representative Wilson, said there                                                               
is a  copyright on the  second verse.   However, she  pointed out                                                               
that the  [University of Alaska]  Foundation, with which  she has                                                               
collaborated, "has no  objection."  She indicated  that the focus                                                               
of the  bill is  to recognize  the work of  Carol Beery  Davis in                                                               
writing the second verse.                                                                                                       
8:58:35 AM                                                                                                                    
MICHAEL  ROVITO,  Staff,  Senator   Linda  Menard,  Alaska  State                                                               
Legislature, on  behalf of Senator  Menard, sponsor, said  he had                                                               
just spoken with Mary Rutherford,  President of the University of                                                               
Alaska  Foundation, and  he related  his  understanding that  the                                                               
foundation is  not worried  about the  distribution of  the song,                                                               
but wants  the foundation recognized  as the owner of  the second                                                               
verse of the song.                                                                                                              
8:59:11 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE P.  WILSON asked what consequences  there would be                                                               
if  someone  printed  both  verses, not  knowing  he/she  had  to                                                               
recognize the foundation.                                                                                                       
8:59:49 AM                                                                                                                    
MR. ROVITO said he does not know but could find out.                                                                            
8:59:59 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE SEATON  noted that  the language  on page  2, line                                                               
21,  read  "nonprofit use"  rather  than  "use by  a  nonprofit";                                                               
therefore, the copyright  fee for nonprofit use  would be waived.                                                               
He asked  if the foundation has  the copyright to both  the first                                                               
and second verses.                                                                                                              
9:01:11 AM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR MENARD replied that the short answer is yes.                                                                            
9:01:18 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE GRUENBERG expressed concern  about the legality of                                                               
the issue.   He noted that SB  43 has been referred  to the House                                                               
Judiciary  Standing Committee,  which is  most likely  to address                                                               
this issue.   He said it  appears that Section 2  applies to both                                                               
verses, when  perhaps it should  apply only to the  second verse.                                                               
He expressed  concern about unintended consequences,  and said he                                                               
wants  copyright lawyers,  as well  as representatives  from [the                                                               
foundation] available to testify.  He  said he would like to know                                                               
if the foundation would concur  with a decision to delete Section                                                               
9:03:15 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE JOHNSON  concurred with  Representative Gruenberg.                                                               
He said  Section 2  could be  written so that  the verses  to the                                                               
song are public  domain.  In response  to Representative Seaton's                                                               
previous remark  regarding the  use of  the term  "nonprofit", he                                                               
said  anyone who  is not  part of  a nonprofit  group would  fall                                                               
under "all other rights reserved."                                                                                              
9:04:21 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE PETERSEN said he has  been involved in playing and                                                               
singing  music for  over 40  years, and  Section 2  is a  classic                                                               
disclaimer  that  is  used  in  conjunction  with  "any  type  of                                                               
copyrighted music  that is  being used  in any  type of  a public                                                               
sense."   The music is  open for use  in a nonprofit  manner, but                                                               
not for financial gain, he explained.                                                                                           
9:05:49 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE   JOHNSON   said  Representative   Petersen   just                                                               
underlined  his point  that the  reason the  copyright is  on the                                                               
music is so that  if someone uses it, the write  of the music can                                                               
be compensated.   He said the  language in SB 43  appears to give                                                               
recourse  to the  University  of  Alaska to  use  the  song.   He                                                               
recommended that the  committee delete [Section 2]  now and allow                                                               
the House  Judiciary Standing Committee to  add it back in  if it                                                               
so chooses.                                                                                                                     
9:06:46 AM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR MENARD  said that  would be acceptable.   She  related an                                                               
anecdote about a  woman who sings often for the  public and would                                                               
like  to sing  the second  verse, but  feels uncomfortable  about                                                               
doing so.   She said  the University of  Alaska has said  that it                                                               
will release the  second verse to be acknowledged  as an official                                                               
second verse.                                                                                                                   
9:08:23 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE GRUENBERG  said he  would be  comfortable deleting                                                               
Section 2.  He  asked if wording needs to be  added to let people                                                               
know whether the song is in public domain.                                                                                      
9:09:27 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE P.  WILSON said she  is comfortable  with deleting                                                               
Section  2, but  she  would  like the  bill  sponsor to  consider                                                               
before the next committee of referral  if it would need to be put                                                               
back into the  bill.  She restated her  concern regarding whether                                                               
there would  be consequences  if someone  printed out  the verses                                                               
without noting the copyright.                                                                                                   
9:10:30 AM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR  MENARD,  in  response   to  Representative  Gatto,  said                                                               
currently a  person would  not be carried  away in  handcuffs who                                                               
chose  to  sing  the  second   verse;  the  person  to  whom  she                                                               
previously  referred  just did  not  feel  comfortable singing  a                                                               
verse to  the a state  song that has  not yet been  recognized by                                                               
the state legislature as an official verse.                                                                                     
9:11:32 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE PETERSEN  removed his  objection to the  motion to                                                               
adopt Version  R as  the work  draft.   Therefore, Version  R was                                                               
before the committee.                                                                                                           
9:11:37 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE JOHNSON moved to  adopt Conceptual Amendment 1, as                                                               
     Page 2, line 19-22:                                                                                                        
          Delete all language                                                                                                   
There being no objection, Conceptual Amendment 1 was adopted.                                                                   
9:11:57 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE  SEATON  and  REPRESENTATIVE  GRUENBERG  moved  to                                                               
report the proposed HCS for  SB 43, Version 26-LS0259\R, Bullard,                                                               
3/29/10,   as  amended,   out   of   committee  with   individual                                                               
recommendations and the accompanying fiscal notes.                                                                              
9:12:13 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE  GATTO  objected.   He  said  he has  respect  for                                                               
Alaska - its cultures and history -  which is why he objects.  He                                                               
stated  his belief  that the  legislature should  not change  the                                                               
state's history  by adding  a verse  to a  song that  was written                                                               
long ago.   He said  there is no  law against singing  the second                                                               
verse  or not  singing  it.   He  stated that  his  intent is  to                                                               
protect Alaska's  culture -  "more so than  anybody who  votes to                                                               
change  it."   Representative  Gatto  said no  one  goes back  to                                                               
investigate the Holy  Bible and change it, and if  they did, they                                                               
better make  a new addition.   He said the bill  is not proposing                                                               
to make a  new addition song, but is adding  something new to the                                                               
old addition.   He pointed  out that  the Alaska State  Seal does                                                               
not depict Alaska Native culture on it.                                                                                         
CHAIR LYNN offered  his understanding that a  bill was introduced                                                               
a few years ago to do so.                                                                                                       
9:15:52 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE GRUENBERG  noted that the first  verse of Alaska's                                                               
Flag refers  to sourdoughs  who came from  the Lower  48, whereas                                                               
the second  verse refers to Alaska  Natives.  He said,  "It seems                                                               
to me that the second verse just restores the balance."                                                                         
9:16:45 AM                                                                                                                    
A roll  call vote was  taken.  Representatives  Petersen, Seaton,                                                               
Wilson,  Gruenberg, and  Lynn voted  in  favor of  the motion  to                                                               
report the proposed HCS for  SB 43, Version 26-LS0259\R, Bullard,                                                               
3/29/10,  as amended,  out of  committee.   Representatives Gatto                                                               
and  Johnson voted  against it.   Therefore,  HCS SB  43(STA) was                                                               
reported out of  the House State Affairs Standing  Committee by a                                                               
vote of 5-2.                                                                                                                    

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
01-A second CS for HB 241 Version S.pdf HSTA 3/30/2010 8:00:00 AM
HB 241
Explanation of changes from CS HCR 8 P to C versions.pdf HSTA 3/30/2010 8:00:00 AM
CS for HCR 8 ( ) C version.pdf HSTA 3/30/2010 8:00:00 AM
HB128-REVISED FISCAL NOTE GOV-OMB-3-29-10.pdf HSTA 3/30/2010 8:00:00 AM
HB 128