Legislature(2015 - 2016)CAPITOL 106

04/09/2015 08:00 AM House STATE AFFAIRS

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* first hearing in first committee of referral
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Moved HB 180 Out of Committee
Moved HJR 22 Out of Committee
Heard & Held
+ Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled TELECONFERENCED
             SB   6-ELIMINATE DAYLIGHT SAVING TIME                                                                          
8:22:42 AM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR LYNN announced that the final  order of business was CS FOR                                                               
SENATE  BILL  NO.  6(FIN),  "An  Act  exempting  the  state  from                                                               
daylight saving  time; petitioning  the United  States Department                                                               
of  Transportation  to  change  the time  zones  of  Alaska;  and                                                               
providing for an effective date."                                                                                               
CHAIR LYNN remarked  that trying to change someone's  mind on the                                                               
issue  of Daylight  Saving Time  is more  difficult than  getting                                                               
someone  to  change  his/her  religion.    He  characterized  the                                                               
proposed legislation as important.                                                                                              
8:23:54 AM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR  ANNA  MACKINNON,  Alaska  State  Legislature,  as  prime                                                               
sponsor, presented  SB 6.   She said legislation to  end Daylight                                                               
Saving Time has  been introduced five times.   She indicated that                                                               
she had carried  the legislation before as  a Representative, and                                                               
now was carrying  it as a Senator.  She  stated that Alaskans are                                                               
passionate about  the issue -  both those  in favor and  those in                                                               
SENATOR MACKINNON said under SB 6,  as of January 1, 2017, Alaska                                                               
would no longer switch back  and forth [from Daylight Saving Time                                                               
to Alaska  Standard Time],  and the governor  of Alaska  would be                                                               
instructed  to   send  a  letter   to  the  U.S.   Department  of                                                               
Transportation (USDOT) to ask it  to reassess Alaska's time zone.                                                               
She clarified that  the proposed legislation would  not ask USDOT                                                               
to split time  zones, but ask "if we're in  the right time zone."                                                               
She said the best way to "make that case" would be to pass SB 6.                                                                
SENATOR  MACKINNON  related, "This  bill  was  originally put  in                                                               
place to  try to save energy."   She said in  Benjamin Franklin's                                                               
day, the issue  was about "wax and wicks" -  how light was burned                                                               
- but  that issue  does not hold  true today.   She said  she had                                                               
sent  out a  poll  [entitled, "2015  Daylight  Saving Time  Poll,                                                               
February 7-27,  2015"].   She said the  issue of  Daylight Saving                                                               
has garnered a phenomenal response.   She noted that when she had                                                               
carried  similar legislation  as a  Representative, 500  Alaskans                                                               
from  across  the  state shared  different  effects  of  Daylight                                                               
Saving  Time.   In  Northwest Alaska,  teachers  noted there  was                                                               
disruption  in their  classrooms during  test-taking time  in the                                                               
beginning of  March.   In Southeast  Alaska, people  talked about                                                               
needing  additional  daylight  for floatplane  operations.    She                                                               
indicated that  healthcare providers had related  issues with the                                                               
time change and  people who are bipolar and with  the time change                                                               
having an effect  on some people's sleep that  was different from                                                               
jet lag.   She mentioned a  study done in Sweden  that showed men                                                               
had a greater  risk of heart attack in the  first few days coming                                                               
out of  Daylight Saving Time;  although it was  not characterized                                                               
as  a  direct  result  of  switching time,  the  study  showed  a                                                               
"potential relationship" to  the time change.  She  said data was                                                               
available to  share with  the committee if  requested.   She said                                                               
Australia's study mentioned heart attack  and suicide rates.  She                                                               
said,  "That's  what  originally   took  me  towards  looking  at                                                               
Daylight Saving Time."                                                                                                          
8:27:13 AM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR  MACKINNON related  that  she had  served  as the  former                                                               
executive director of Standing Together  Against Rape (STAR), and                                                               
she had  observed "violence disproportionate  to any  other state                                                               
in the  union."  She  then worked for  seven years at  Hospice of                                                               
Anchorage, where she  saw people with higher rates  of cancer and                                                               
other  terminal illnesses.   She  said  she began  work with  the                                                               
Alaska Suicide Prevention Council six  years ago.  Throughout her                                                               
work  with  these  organizations,  she said  she  questioned  why                                                               
Alaska  was   always  "at  the   wrong  end  of  some   of  these                                                               
statistics."   One idea is  that Alaska's high rates  of violence                                                               
and suicide may  be connected to seasonal  effective disorder and                                                               
low light levels.  She  mentioned second-hand smoke as an example                                                               
of an  outside influence on  social norms.   She said she  had no                                                               
hard data regarding  the effects of flipping time  back and forth                                                               
on suicide rates, but told  committee members that whether or not                                                               
they felt the effects of the  time changes, "there may be members                                                               
in Alaska that do."                                                                                                             
8:29:26 AM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR  MACKINNON  talked  about   a  cartoon,  which  she  said                                                               
illustrated  that  for  babies, animals,  and  farmers,  Daylight                                                               
Saving  Time is  "outside of  their norm"  and was  not something                                                               
they  requested; "they  wake up  in association  when their  body                                                               
tells them to wake up."                                                                                                         
8:29:56 AM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR MACKINNON  relayed that the  last time she  had sponsored                                                               
legislation regarding  Daylight Saving  Time, she heard  from 500                                                               
people;  this  time  she  heard   from  3,700.    Of  those  that                                                               
responded, some were highly opposed,  while others were highly in                                                               
favor.   She said she  made a point  to engage entities  that, in                                                               
previous years,  had been in  opposition to the  proposed change,                                                               
for  example:    The  Alaska State  Chamber  [of  Commerce],  the                                                               
airline industry, and  the cruise ship industry.   She explained,                                                               
"I wanted  to make sure  that there ... [was]  real consideration                                                               
for the challenges that our  business community might face ... if                                                               
we were  to do  this ...  policy change."   She reported  that 78                                                               
percent  of those  that responded  [to  the aforementioned  poll]                                                               
wanted to eliminate Daylight Saving  Time; 18.5 percent supported                                                               
keeping Daylight  Saving Time.   In response  to Chair  Lynn, she                                                               
said the poll was conducted via an on-line survey.                                                                              
8:31:45 AM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR  LYNN asked  the  bill  sponsor if  she  had conducted  any                                                               
scientific polling on the issue.                                                                                                
SENATOR MACKINNON answered no.                                                                                                  
CHAIR LYNN  expressed doubt that  a survey has the  same validity                                                               
as a scientific poll.   For example, he offered his understanding                                                               
that Fox News puts out surveys to "a rather targeted audience."                                                                 
SENATOR  MACKINNON  responded  that  she had  never  claimed  the                                                               
survey had  the same  validity as a  scientific poll,  but rather                                                               
that it was  "self-selecting."  She mentioned a  survey done when                                                               
she  was  a Representative,  which  was  statistically valid  and                                                               
showed 52  percent of Alaskans  in support of the  elimination of                                                               
Daylight Saving  Time.  Referring  again to the 2015  survey, she                                                               
relayed that [54.8] percent of  the population that responded was                                                               
from  Southcentral Alaska;  26.5 percent  was from  the Interior;                                                               
and 15.1 percent was from  Southeast Alaska.  She recognized that                                                               
the  proposed  bill  was  a policy  decision  that  would  affect                                                               
individuals and  businesses.  As  shown in the poll,  the support                                                               
by region  showed as  follows:   74.2 percent  in the  Far North;                                                               
85.9 percent  in the  Interior; 75.7  percent in  Southwest; 81.2                                                               
percent  in Southcentral;  and 53.7  percent in  Southeast.   She                                                               
said she had  anticipated the majority of  Southeast Alaska would                                                               
have been  in opposition.   She  added, "And  ... I  believe they                                                               
represent approximately  10 percent of  the population and  15 of                                                               
the  population of  the  survey.   So,  again, not  statistically                                                               
valid, but certainly telling."                                                                                                  
8:34:07 AM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR  MACKINNON said  there are  concerns related  to flipping                                                               
back  and forth  between  times during  the  year, which  include                                                               
correlations between  [road] safety and vehicle  collisions; work                                                               
place  environments and  accidents; and  school attendance  and a                                                               
drop in  test scores.   She  indicated that  a study  showed that                                                               
Indiana experienced  an increased  cost in  energy when  it "went                                                               
off of  Daylight Saving Time."   She said Arizona  has functioned                                                               
well off of Daylight Saving Time.                                                                                               
8:34:49 AM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR MACKINNON  said Alaska's  banking community  has asserted                                                               
that under  SB 6, it would  be difficult for them  to participate                                                               
in financial  markets.  She  added, "At least the  general public                                                               
has spoken  about this."   She stated her belief  that technology                                                               
has advanced in  that regard, such that  people could effectively                                                               
invest  and manage  money  from Alaska,  "no  matter on  Daylight                                                               
Saving  Time or  off  Daylight  Saving Time."    She offered  for                                                               
consideration  that investors  invest  in a  world market,  which                                                               
holds  other challenges.   Referring  to  pilots concerned  about                                                               
flying during the  "twilight zone," she noted,  "Alaska gains and                                                               
loses so much light, so quickly,  that there is a brief period of                                                               
time where that is a  ... statistically valid argument.  Anywhere                                                               
from 10-21 days in  the fall would be the time -  in at least the                                                               
floatplane argument - for landing or flying."                                                                                   
SENATOR  MACKINNON asked  the committee  to  consider the  policy                                                               
decision "in how it affects people and how it affects business."                                                                
8:36:11 AM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR  LYNN  noted  that  the   sponsor  had  mentioned  a  study                                                               
conducted  in  Sweden.    He  mentioned a  2012  study  from  the                                                               
University  of  Alabama  that   alleged  that  switching  between                                                               
Daylight Saving  Time and Standard  Time could  cause up to  a 10                                                               
percent surge  in heart attacks.   He asked Senator  MacKinnon if                                                               
she was familiar with that study.                                                                                               
SENATOR MACKINNON answered no.                                                                                                  
CHAIR LYNN  questioned how many studies  may have been done.   He                                                               
further questioned whether setting clocks  back in the fall would                                                               
result in "a corresponding decrease in heart attacks."                                                                          
SENATOR MACKINNON  said she could  not speculate.   She continued                                                               
as follows:                                                                                                                     
     That  is  true for  car  accidents  - when  you  plunge                                                                    
     people into darkness - for  Alaska, because we go there                                                                    
     very quickly,  and then we  recover very  quickly, too.                                                                    
     So, when you go in, we  have an uptick, and when you go                                                                    
     out  into  daylight,  you have  the  uptick  the  other                                                                    
     direction.    But  overall, some  of  the  studies  are                                                                    
     pointing to increase, even on the balance of it all.                                                                       
CHAIR LYNN  said he knows  that "clocks  do matter."   He related                                                               
the effects  of ever-changing shifts  he worked when in  the U.S.                                                               
Army on his circadian rhythm.                                                                                                   
8:38:27 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE KELLER related his  experience working a number of                                                               
summers in the  Arctic, where he said  clocks were insignificant.                                                               
He  emphasized his  interest  in "the  petition  that's going  to                                                               
[US]DOT."    He  asked  the   bill  sponsor  to  expound  on  the                                                               
procedure.   He asked  if there  may be other  ways to  "put more                                                               
weight behind it."                                                                                                              
SENATOR MACKINNON  responded that she  had asked the  governor to                                                               
request  the  U.S. Department  of  Transportation  to initiate  a                                                               
discussion  with Alaskan  communities about  Alaska's time.   She                                                               
said this  would afford each  region the opportunity to  make its                                                               
case and  for the  state as  a whole to  determine its  best time                                                               
zone.   She  said she  had no  interest in  dividing Alaska  into                                                               
multiple  time zones;  it  currently operates  on  two.   Senator                                                               
MacKinnon  offered her  understanding that  after that  point, it                                                               
would be  outside of  Alaskans' hands, except  to engage  in that                                                               
federal  process.    She  said  Alaska  would  remain  on  Alaska                                                               
Standard Time,  which meant for  five months of the  year, Alaska                                                               
would be  one hour off Seattle  time and four hours  off the time                                                               
on  the East  Coast,  but during  Daylight  Saving Time,  without                                                               
changing  its clocks,  Alaska would  be two  hours off  Seattle's                                                               
time and  five hours off  the time on the  East Coast.   She said                                                               
she understands that "most Alaskans  don't want that disconnect."                                                               
She  offered  her  understanding   that  the  federal  government                                                               
considers  only the  issue  of  commerce in  making  a time  zone                                                               
change.  She continued as follows:                                                                                              
     ... We made  our case already to be  on Alaska Standard                                                                    
     Time.   If  we're making  our  case after  we come  off                                                                    
     Daylight Saving  Time, it seems  to me we'd have  a new                                                                    
     interest  in having  a  conversation  about which  time                                                                    
     zone we should be on:   Should we be on Alaska Standard                                                                    
     Time  or  should we  do  something  else?   I  wouldn't                                                                    
     proposed  to insert  my belief  on Alaskans;  I believe                                                                    
     they have to  make that decision.  But that  would be a                                                                    
     conversation that we  ... may be able to back  up if we                                                                    
     pass a resolution in support  of a particular time zone                                                                    
     - if we thought it was  best to stay, as a legislature,                                                                    
     on Alaska  [Standard] Time  zone, we  might want  to do                                                                    
     that.  If  we thought we should be  on Pacific Standard                                                                    
     ... Time zone, then we could  make a case to that.  But                                                                    
     outside  of  that, I  don't  know  another way,  except                                                                    
     engaging,  as a  Representative or  Senator ...  in the                                                                    
      conversation, as [US]DOT came forward into Alaska to                                                                      
     make those findings.                                                                                                       
8:42:17 AM                                                                                                                    
ERIN   SHINE,  Staff,   Senator  Anna   McKinnon,  Alaska   State                                                               
Legislature,  on  behalf  of Senator  MacKinnon,  prime  sponsor,                                                               
stated that  the aforementioned process with  the U.S. Department                                                               
of  Transportation is  addressed  in Section  2  of the  proposed                                                               
legislation,  which  would request  the  governor  to submit  the                                                               
application 21 days after passage of  SB 6.  She said the process                                                               
would  take  six  months  to  a year  for  the  federal  process,                                                               
including  meetings  and a  public  comment  period, after  which                                                               
USDOT  would make  a final  recommendation as  to what  time zone                                                               
Alaska should be on or if time zone boundaries would be moved.                                                                  
MS. SHINE,  in response  to Representative  Keller's query  as to                                                               
whether there may  be a better option, said  the sponsor's office                                                               
had  asked Legislative  Legal and  Research Services  to draft  a                                                               
bill  proposing  adoption  of Daylight  Saving  Time  year-round;                                                               
however,  the  1966 Uniform  Time  Act  does  not allow  that  to                                                               
happen.    She clarified  that  the  only  options are  to  adopt                                                               
Daylight Saving Time  or eliminate it.   The proposed legislation                                                               
would [eliminate  Daylight Saving Time, thus  Alaska would remain                                                               
year-round on Alaska Standard Time.]                                                                                            
8:43:51 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE KELLER  explained that he was  questioning whether                                                               
the effort under  SB 6 was enough or whether  the effort could be                                                               
enhanced,  for   example,  by  contacting   Alaska's  delegation,                                                               
furthering the  focus of the  issue within a subcommittee,  or by                                                               
knocking on doors.  He emphasized  that he was in support of what                                                               
the sponsor was trying to accomplish.                                                                                           
SENATOR MACKINNON  reiterated that a resolution  could be passed.                                                               
She indicated  that SB  6 was  the first  step, and  the proposed                                                               
effective date would  allow ample time to engage  in the process,                                                               
so that "businesses would not be as adversely affected."                                                                        
REPRESENTATIVE KELLER  directed attention to language  on page 2,                                                               
line 3,  which asks USDOT to  hold hearings, and he  suggested it                                                               
could  offer the  option to  "gather  input from  Alaskans."   He                                                               
explained that USDOT may balk at being asked to hold hearings.                                                                  
8:45:34 AM                                                                                                                    
MS.  SHINE said  she  had asked  USDOT if  it  had the  necessary                                                               
funding to send  someone to Alaska to hold hearings,  and she was                                                               
told USDOT felt it would be possible  to do that.  She said USDOT                                                               
"did  the  same  process"  in  2005,  in  response  to  Indiana's                                                               
petition to  change its time  zone boundaries when it  "went onto                                                               
Daylight  Saving  Time."    She added,  "They  went  through  the                                                               
process, and they did that then."                                                                                               
8:46:37 AM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR LYNN  noted that he  had received  "a lot of  pushback from                                                               
the business  community," and he  offered his  understanding that                                                               
other  members of  the  committee had,  as well.    He asked  how                                                               
deeply the  sponsor had vetted  the business  community regarding                                                               
the issue.                                                                                                                      
SENATOR MACKINNON answered that her  office had sent e-mails with                                                               
specific requests.   She said  she had  met with the  cruise ship                                                               
industry; with the broadcasters  association, from both large and                                                               
small  stations; and  with pilots.   She  indicated that  she had                                                               
given these  entities a heads  up regarding the  current meeting.                                                               
She  emphasized that  the issue  being addressed  under SB  6 was                                                               
about  her  constituents that  had  been  "adversely affected  by                                                               
switching  their clocks  back and  forth."   She stated  that the                                                               
bill was  about people.   She  said, "[We] didn't  have a  lot of                                                               
businesses  jump up  and down  about  trying to  change the  time                                                               
zones."  She continued as follows:                                                                                              
     I think  that it's  a fair  policy discussion  that the                                                                    
     business  community can  be affected  by  this, and  we                                                                    
     need  to consider  that  very  much.   For  me, I  just                                                                    
     raised the higher issue -  as we're seeing more studies                                                                    
     going on  regarding health -  that there might  be some                                                                    
     causation effect.   And I'm  not asserting that  it's a                                                                    
     silver bullet,  because it's not; I'm  just saying that                                                                    
     there is more...                                                                                                           
SENATOR MACKINNON  said the  people who  approached her  with the                                                               
idea  for the  legislation  were "just  tired  of changing  their                                                               
clocks," felt that  it was a waste  of time to do so.   She said,                                                               
"They do not understand why the  government is in the business of                                                               
telling them  when the sun  comes up ...  at the same  time every                                                               
day and we change a clock to  tell them so."  She reiterated that                                                               
teachers in  classrooms witness disruption and  do not understand                                                               
the  need  for   [Daylight  Saving  Time],  and   now  there  are                                                               
indications that show it hurts test  scores.  She said she thinks                                                               
the  business community  would support  the  entire nation  doing                                                               
away with Daylight Saving Time.   She said she contacted Alaska's                                                               
delegation  about the  issue.   She  commented  on the  difficult                                                               
nature of  addressing issues in  Congress, because of  the number                                                               
of people with differing passionate  views.  She said the largest                                                               
opposition group  she had identified  is the retail  industry and                                                               
bars and restaurants,  which all benefit from it  being light out                                                               
after people get  off work, because people spend  more when there                                                               
is daylight.  She talked about  how much more energy she has with                                                               
the summer  light, than  during the  dark hours  of winter.   She                                                               
concluded, "It's  our nature  to be  associated with  the climate                                                               
that's around  us and the sun  that raises ... every  morning and                                                               
sets every evening."                                                                                                            
8:49:52 AM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR LYNN  acknowledged that the  sponsor was carrying  the bill                                                               
in  response  to  her  constituents.     Regarding  the  business                                                               
community, he stated that it  seems somebody had hired a lobbyist                                                               
to oppose SB  6.  He questioned why the  business community would                                                               
spend  "something like  $10,000" to  oppose  SB 6  unless it  was                                                               
"pretty  important   to  them."     He   added,  "It's   even  on                                                               
[television] (TV) now."                                                                                                         
SENATOR  MACKINNON  said, "The  hired  campaign  to continue  the                                                               
status quo  is affective  in generating support."   She  said the                                                               
3,700 that  support elimination  of Daylight  Saving Time  do not                                                               
have that  luxury, but  instead have  her as  their spokesperson.                                                               
She mentioned a chamber survey  with a large group in opposition,                                                               
which  she offered  her understanding  was  self-selecting.   She                                                               
said  members  of  the  Alaska State  Chamber  of  Commerce  have                                                               
contacted her  directly to  inform her of  the information  it is                                                               
generating.  She  indicated that the chamber  wants the committee                                                               
to know  that its members are  not unanimous in their  support or                                                               
opposition, and they  believe there will be "some  period of time                                                               
that  people  will adjust."    She  said  that  is why  the  bill                                                               
proposes a  year and  a half  for the effective  date and  why it                                                               
would  be  important for  the  bill  to  move  in 2015,  so  that                                                               
everyone has the maximum amount of time to adjust and respond.                                                                  
8:52:10 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE  VAZQUEZ  noted that  many  people  had called  or                                                               
written in to her office - most  in opposition.  She said the key                                                               
issue was  for those who  have to  communicate with the  Lower 48                                                               
for business  and, under  SB 6, would  experience an  increase in                                                               
the time difference to the West  Coast and East Coast from one to                                                               
two hours and from four to  five hours, respectively.  She opined                                                               
that a "beautiful"  solution would be if U.S.  Congress [did away                                                               
with Daylight  Saving Time for  the entire country].   She stated                                                               
that she  was currently was  leaning toward not supporting  SB 6.                                                               
She suggested  a resolution  from the House  and Senate  could be                                                               
sent  to Congress.    Representative  Vazquez acknowledged  there                                                               
have been studies  done related to Daylight  Saving Time's effect                                                               
on a person's body, and how  it affects students.  She suggested,                                                               
though, that many students have to  start the school day "way too                                                               
early," and  "their natural  clocks are not  in tune  with that."                                                               
She  said she  saw the  merits of  the proposed  legislation, but                                                               
wondered if "we could somehow nudge Congress."                                                                                  
8:54:37 AM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR MACKINNON  responded that someone  has to take  the first                                                               
step, and everyone is in a  standoff.  She stated she believes in                                                               
the people of  Alaska and in the state's  business community, and                                                               
she  did not  want to  create  a barrier  between the  two.   She                                                               
related  that Dan  Cuddy, [then  Chairman  of the  Board] of  the                                                               
First  National Bank  Alaska,  was  the first  person  to send  a                                                               
letter  of  support for  SB  6.   She  said  she  knows that  the                                                               
business community  is rallying  in opposition and  that Alaskans                                                               
are  divided on  the  issue,  but she  reiterated  that they  are                                                               
divided "in a positive way."   She stated that her overall belief                                                               
is that  52 percent of  Alaskans want the elimination,  and there                                                               
is a  higher representation throughout the  business community in                                                               
opposition to  the proposed legislation.   Regarding Chair Lynn's                                                               
mention of lobbyists  being hired, she relayed that  she has been                                                               
called, "the powerful co-chair of  Senate Finance."  She said she                                                               
was given the position and "given  a bag that had nothing in it."                                                               
She said  it has been a  difficult year, but opined  that nothing                                                               
had  happened in  the Senate  Finance Committee  in which  people                                                               
could  not take  pride.    She suggested  the  incentive to  hire                                                               
advocates may  be in the belief  that she somehow would  use some                                                               
perceived  power in  a way  that was  less than  honorable.   She                                                               
emphasized that would not be the case.                                                                                          
8:57:02 AM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR LYNN  related that  he has children  living in  Florida and                                                               
Indiana,  and a  five-hour  time difference  would  make it  more                                                               
difficult for him to talk to them.                                                                                              
8:57:27 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE VAZQUEZ  clarified that no lobbyist  had contacted                                                               
her - only numerous constituents.                                                                                               
8:57:52 AM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR  MACKINNON  explained that  she  needed  to leave  to  be                                                               
present at another committee hearing,  but her staff would remain                                                               
to hear the public testimony for SB 6.                                                                                          
CHAIR LYNN  noted that Alaska  currently was in a  fiscal crisis,                                                               
and he  questioned whether  the effect under  SB 6  on businesses                                                               
would add to that crisis.                                                                                                       
SENATOR MACKINNON  said the business community  would express its                                                               
belief about  the possible effect of  SB 6.  She  opined that the                                                               
business  community is  resilient and  has been  able to  survive                                                               
other laws  that have affected  it in  the past.   She reiterated                                                               
that the  policy decision to  be made  was about people,  but the                                                               
legislature must keep in mind how  such a decision may affect the                                                               
business community.                                                                                                             
8:59:22 AM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR LYNN opened public testimony on SB 6.                                                                                     
8:59:41 AM                                                                                                                    
DONALD WESTLUND  corrected the bill sponsor's  previous statement                                                               
that there  are currently two time  zones in Alaska.   He said in                                                               
addition to  Aleutian and Alaska Standard  Times, Metlakatla runs                                                               
on Pacific  Standard Time.   He said the elimination  of Daylight                                                               
Saving  Time  would  make  it  impossible for  him  to  fly  from                                                               
Ketchikan to visit family in Iowa  in one day.  Currently, during                                                               
Alaska Standard  Time, if he  flies out  in the morning,  he does                                                               
not connect  with the  flights from Seattle  eastward and  has to                                                               
spend the  night in  Seattle; it's  only when he  takes a  5 p.m.                                                               
flight  out  of Ketchikan  that  he  can  continue to  Iowa,  but                                                               
arriving at  midnight.   He said  he would  like the  governor to                                                               
send a  request to [USDOT]  to assign Alaska to  Pacific Standard                                                               
Time,  because "that  way, everybody  would be  at least  in line                                                               
with  the  West  Coast,  where  we  do  most  of  our  business."                                                               
Regarding the survey,  he indicated that it  represents less than                                                               
one percent of Alaska's population;  therefore, "it can't be very                                                               
9:02:41 AM                                                                                                                    
SCOTT  YAHR stated  that  although he  manages  a radio  station,                                                               
which drives  his concern regarding the  proposed legislation, he                                                               
was testifying on  behalf of himself.  He urged  the committee to                                                               
vote no  on SB 6.   He said the  current time separation  of four                                                               
hours makes doing business [with  the East Coast] tricky, but "to                                                               
have  our  times different  from  winter  to summer  makes  doing                                                               
business  even more  difficult;  it alienates  Alaskans from  the                                                               
rest of  the country  even more,  and it will  put Alaskans  at a                                                               
disadvantage."  He said the radio  he manages in Glen Allen tapes                                                               
national call-in programs.  If the  time does not change with the                                                               
rest  of the  country, it  would have  to change  its programming                                                               
time twice a year, which  would upset the station's listeners, or                                                               
multiply the work  of the station's two staff  members by forcing                                                               
them to  record the program  the day before  in order to  play it                                                               
back on air at the same  scheduled time 24 hours later.  However,                                                               
that would  mean that the  station's listeners would not  be able                                                               
to  "engage in  the  national conversation  that  takes place  on                                                               
these  programs."   He indicated  that  the proposed  legislation                                                               
would  affect  broadcasting  across Alaska,  which  would  affect                                                               
Alaskans  personally,  because they  expect  programs  to air  at                                                               
certain times,  in alignment with the  rest of the country.   Mr.                                                               
Yahr opined that  Daylight Saving Time is  "pretty much useless";                                                               
however, as long  as the majority of the country  is partaking in                                                               
it, Alaska  needs to align  itself so  that it does  not alienate                                                               
Alaskans, Alaskan businesses, and Alaskan broadcasters.                                                                         
9:04:55 AM                                                                                                                    
RON PHILEMONOFF  stated that  he is  involved with  businesses in                                                               
Anchorage,  and is  also  the CEO  of an  Alaskan  business.   In                                                               
response to Chair Lynn, he said  the business is an Alaska Native                                                               
corporation,  which   is  involved  in  tourism,   the  fisheries                                                               
industry,  environmental  cleanup work,  telecommunications,  and                                                               
the wind  power industry.  He  stated that many people  living on                                                               
the  west  coast  of  Alaska,  including  St.  Paul,  Bering  Sea                                                               
communities,  and  those  on the  Aleutian  Islands  support  the                                                               
elimination of Daylight  Saving Time, because they  think it does                                                               
not really work as intended.   He said, "In our case, it actually                                                               
wastes more daylight  than it saves ...."  He  stated support for                                                               
SB 6, which  speaks beyond the issue of whether  there is more or                                                               
less  daylight;  it  addresses economic  interests  and  concerns                                                               
related to safety, health, and education.                                                                                       
MR.  PHILEMONOFF indicated  that teachers  and parents  know that                                                               
children suffer every morning when they  get up to go to [school]                                                               
in the dark.   Further, he said documentation shows  that they do                                                               
not  study well  in  the dark.    He said  he  heard that  health                                                               
concerns related to changing clocks  has been documented, such as                                                               
incidence of heart attack.                                                                                                      
MR. PHILEMONOFF  said his focus  in testifying was on  safety and                                                               
economics.   He said the  Pribilof Islands are  "technically four                                                               
time  zones away  from  everybody else."    With Daylight  Saving                                                               
Time, the  area is  off by  five time zones.   He  indicated that                                                               
automatic computer  technology switches  cell phones used  in the                                                               
Pribilof Islands  to "Adak Time,"  which is the same  as Hawaiian                                                               
Standard Time.   He opined that man's manipulation  of time zones                                                               
has made things  worse.  He said  the switch in time  two times a                                                               
year decreases his productivity and makes  him feel like he has a                                                               
hangover for  about a  week each  time.  He  said there  are body                                                               
changes  that  happen when  switching  from  a  body clock  to  a                                                               
manmade time zone.  He said the  Bering Sea is a great ocean, and                                                               
Mother Nature releases  wind onto the sea; it is  the place where                                                               
the show,  "The Deadliest Catch,"  is filmed.  He  said residents                                                               
already deal  with the  fury of  the elements and  "for us  to be                                                               
forced  to  work in  the  dark  arbitrarily  only makes  it  more                                                               
deadly."   He  said residents  don't see  the daylight  sometimes                                                               
until 10  a.m. or  11 a.m.,  and making the  switch in  time only                                                               
makes  that worse.   He  said he  had seen  advertisement by  the                                                               
cruise ship industry trying to  convince Alaskans of the merit of                                                               
Daylight Saving Time;  however, he thinks the  industry is wrong.                                                               
Mr. Philemonoff said he has  heard the argument that Alaska needs                                                               
to stay nearer  to the time zones of Seattle  and the East Coast,                                                               
but he  opined that is  just "scare tactics."   He said  that may                                                               
have  been a  concern  20  years ago,  but  now  people have  the                                                               
ability to  leave a voice  mail, send an  e-mail, or make  a wire                                                               
9:10:53 AM                                                                                                                    
MR.  PHILEMONOFF said  other states  have considered  this issue.                                                               
He said  Hawaii had  opted out  of Daylight  Saving Time,  and he                                                               
offered his understanding  that either Arizona or  New Mexico had                                                               
done  the same.    He said  Washington was  considering  it.   He                                                               
encouraged Alaska  to take the  lead in doing away  with Daylight                                                               
Saving Time.   He said  he did not  have the  money to pay  for a                                                               
lobbyist,  but  opined  that  lobbyists do  not  "speak  for  the                                                               
people."  He urged the committee  to listen to the people and not                                                               
"the  big dollar."   He  reiterated that  he had  testified on  a                                                               
personal  level, as  well as  from  the viewpoint  of a  business                                                               
person, and he stated that  the proposed legislation needed to be                                                               
passed in  order to "go back  to reality."  In  response to Chair                                                               
Lynn, he confirmed that although  he was involved in business, he                                                               
had testified on behalf of himself.                                                                                             
9:13:00 AM                                                                                                                    
PAULA RAK testified in opposition to SB  6.  She said that in the                                                               
past,  when Alaska  lowered  the  number of  time  zones it  had,                                                               
Southeast  Alaskans, who  wanted to  stay on  Pacific Time,  were                                                               
told  that "this  was a  compromise" that  would "unify  Alaska."                                                               
She  indicated that  the Anchorage  area also  had to  compromise                                                               
back  then, except  that it  gained an  hour in  the evening  and                                                               
Juneau  lost an  hour.   She  said the  proposed legislation  was                                                               
asking for  further compromise, which  would put  Anchorage "back                                                               
to where they  started from before all this  happened," which she                                                               
stated seemed unfair.  Ms. Rak  said the bill sponsor argues that                                                               
the proposed legislation is for  health reasons, but she said she                                                               
does not  agree, because she  has seen studies that  support that                                                               
idea and  others that say  a person's  health is not  affected by                                                               
Daylight Saving  Time.  She  reasoned that  if it were  true that                                                               
Daylight Saving Time  was detrimental to a  person's health, then                                                               
so, too, would  be the effect of changing time  zones when flying                                                               
back to  Alaska from Seattle  or just  staying up an  hour later.                                                               
She said she finds that hard to believe.                                                                                        
MS. RAK stated that time zones  are set up for the convenience of                                                               
commerce.   Southeast  Alaska businesses  have said  they do  not                                                               
want  to lose  an hour  of daylight  in the  evening, because  it                                                               
would hurt their commerce, and she  said that is what needs to be                                                               
considered.  She mentioned an amendment  to SB 6 that would allow                                                               
time zones, such that Southeast  Alaska could be on Pacific Time;                                                               
however, she said she had not heard  a lot of talk about that and                                                               
had "a  feeling that that'll just  go away."  She  said she would                                                               
not mind doing  away with Daylight Saving Time if  there was also                                                               
[a  time zone  change], because  then at  least Southeast  Alaska                                                               
would be on the  same time zone as Seattle, at  least part of the                                                               
year.   She  suggested that  instead of  petitioning the  federal                                                               
government  to eliminate  Daylight Saving  Time, the  legislature                                                               
should send  a resolution stating  that it would like  the entire                                                               
country to be unified, in terms of Daylight Saving Time.                                                                        
9:16:09 AM                                                                                                                    
DUSTIN ADAMS,  Board Chair, Explore  Alaska, named  the following                                                               
visitor activities  that take advantage of  the extended daylight                                                               
in  the evenings:   flight  seeing, float  plane trips,  fishing,                                                               
wildlife viewing, hiking,  and touring.  He  said the elimination                                                               
of Daylight Saving Time would  have an adverse economic impact on                                                               
tourism  businesses that  conduct evening  activities, especially                                                               
in the  waning hours in August  and September, which he  said are                                                               
among the busiest months for the tour industry.                                                                                 
9:17:12 AM                                                                                                                    
GUS K. WAHL stated his support of  SB 6.  He said, "Southeast, of                                                               
course,  would like  to keep  ... the  situation the  way it  is,                                                               
because they're  on natural time,  and that's what we  would like                                                               
to  have, is  to be  on natural  time."   He said  he operates  a                                                               
business in Dillingham,  and "because two o'clock  in the morning                                                               
is  midnight," he  feels  like he  has to  keep  working to  take                                                               
advantage of the daylight in  the evenings, which makes him tired                                                               
in the mornings.  He stated that  he could not get used to "being                                                               
out  of synch  with  nature."   He said  the  testifier from  the                                                               
Pribilof Islands "pretty much covered my way of thinking."                                                                      
9:18:47 AM                                                                                                                    
DARWIN BIWER specified  that although he owns a  bar in Anchorage                                                               
and is the chairman of  the Alaska Cabaret, Hotel, Restaurant and                                                               
Retailer's Association, Inc. ("Alaska  CHARR"), he was testifying                                                               
on behalf of himself.  He said  in 1972, he was an area biologist                                                               
for the Alaska Department of Fish  & Game (ADF&G) and managed the                                                               
Bristol Bay  commercial fishery.   During  that year,  time zones                                                               
were changed:   Southeast ran  on Pacific Standard  Time; Yakutat                                                               
ran on "Yukon  Time"; Anchorage ran on Alaska  Standard Time; and                                                               
then  there was  "Aleutian Time."   He  said it  was problematic,                                                               
because the time  zone between the Aleutian Time  and Alaska Time                                                               
"came  right  down  through  the  middle of  Bristol  Bay."    He                                                               
explained this  meant half of  his field  camps were in  one time                                                               
zone, while  the other  half were  in another.   He  continued as                                                               
     Well, we had  radio schedules back then that  we had to                                                                    
     call  in our  escapement  count so,  as biologists,  we                                                                    
     could open and  close the commercial fishery  so we had                                                                    
     proper management of  that fishery.  This  caused a lot                                                                    
     of problems because they also  overlapped with the Cook                                                                    
     Inlet field camp schedules.   So, it was very confusing                                                                    
     because fisherman  who were going to  transfer from one                                                                    
     district within  Bristol Bay to another  district had a                                                                    
     48-hour  waiting period.   Well,  which time  zone were                                                                    
     they in?  It got  very, very complicated.  If Southeast                                                                    
     did   move  and   the   vertical  demarcation   between                                                                    
     different time zones went  down through Southeast, this                                                                    
     could cause a  lot of trouble with  our fisheries there                                                                    
     as well.   So, I  think this  is a problem  that really                                                                    
     needs  to  be addressed.    We  are completely  against                                                                    
     doing away with the Daylight Saving Time.                                                                                  
MR.  BIWER said  the  business community  in  which he  currently                                                               
works  deals with  outdoor  activities,  including golf  courses,                                                               
flight  seeing,   sport  fishing  charters,   paragliding,  "zip-                                                               
lining,"  bars and  restaurants  with sun  decks,  and wild  life                                                               
viewing.   Many businesses contact  businesses outside  of Alaska                                                               
to  get  assistance  with  computers,  speaker  installation,  or                                                               
mechanical device repair, and the  elimination of Daylight Saving                                                               
Time would  make it more  difficult to contact  those businesses.                                                               
He said the general public enjoys outdoor activities, as well.                                                                  
MR.  BIWER noted  that in  2015, Daylight  Saving Time  runs from                                                               
March 8 to November 1.   He said the biggest argument for getting                                                               
rid of  Daylight Saving Time is  that Alaska has plenty  of light                                                               
already.   He  said that  is  true in  the latter  weeks of  June                                                               
through the  early weeks of  July.   He opined, "We  shouldn't be                                                               
getting rid  of this just because  people are too lazy  to change                                                               
their  clocks."   He  indicated that  people  would change  their                                                               
minds  about  doing away  with  Daylight  Saving Time  once  they                                                               
realized how  negatively doing  so would  impact businesses.   He                                                               
questioned studies  that would  indicate health  problems related                                                               
to  Daylight Saving  Time, because  the one-hour  difference when                                                               
flying  between Alaska  and Washington  has not  caused a  lot of                                                               
heart attacks.   He  concluded, "I'm  completely against  this; I                                                               
think it should be stopped right where it is."                                                                                  
9:24:05 AM                                                                                                                    
DAVID MEISMER said he is  a 40-year resident of Alaska testifying                                                               
on behalf  of himself in  support of the elimination  of Daylight                                                               
Saving Time, because  he opined it is  ridiculous, stressful, and                                                               
confusing to  have to change clocks  twice a year.   He said that                                                               
in  Minnesota,  he  has a  business,  apartments,  property,  and                                                               
family, and  he sees  no problem  in eliminating  Daylight Saving                                                               
Time.  He  stated his belief that other states  would follow.  He                                                               
concluded, "I believe  one hour difference in Alaska,  one way or                                                               
t'other, without having  to change that twice a year  - I believe                                                               
people will get used to that and work  with it.  I know I will; I                                                               
9:25:48 AM                                                                                                                    
RICH SAYERS testified  in opposition to SB 6, because  he said it                                                               
would create  hardship on his  business.   He relayed that  he is                                                               
the general manager  of a golf course in Anchorage.   He said the                                                               
proposed  legislation  would  affect  all  activities  for  which                                                               
daylight after  work is  a necessity,  whether that  is someone's                                                               
business or personal  activity, such as hiking a trail.   He said                                                               
the busiest  time for the golf  course is in the  evening, "after                                                               
work" -  the busiest  hour being  from 5:00  p.m. to  6 p.m.   He                                                               
explained that  under SB 6,  "those people that are  playing golf                                                               
at  5:30 p.m.  would still  be  at work  at 4:30  p.m., and  that                                                               
busiest hour would be taken away."   He said he could not imagine                                                               
how  businesses,   such  as  The  Lucky   Wishbone,  J.C.  Penny,                                                               
ConocoPhillips Alaska,  Inc., would  survive, with  their busiest                                                               
hour taken  away.   He said  he estimates  over $230,000  lost in                                                               
revenue for the  golf course and facility.  He  said the facility                                                               
has  developed a  Wacky Women  Executive Week,  for which  it has                                                               
garnered national  awards, and, under  SB 6, participants  in the                                                               
event would have one hour less  to play, which would result in "a                                                               
severe drop-off."   He said  local vendors would suffer  from the                                                               
golf course's lack of revenue,  because he would spend less money                                                               
on them  and throughout the  Anchorage economy.  Mr.  Sayers said                                                               
he  employs  120 throughout  the  summer,  but  if he  lost  that                                                               
revenue and the  time for people to enjoy the  facility, he would                                                               
have  fewer jobs  to  offer.   He  said  he  also interacts  with                                                               
several companies  on the  East Coast,  such as  clothing vendors                                                               
and  a software  provider.   Currently, communications  with them                                                               
must be made  before 1 p.m.; under  SB 6, that would  be one less                                                               
hour.  He  said visitors from everywhere come to  play golf under                                                               
the midnight sun, and they go  on cruises, rent cars, and stay in                                                               
hotels.  That could not happen if there is no midnight sun.                                                                     
9:29:24 AM                                                                                                                    
MR.  SAYERS  indicated  that  when   he  saw  that  the  proposed                                                               
legislation had  passed [the  Senate], he  spoke with  people who                                                               
said  they supported  getting rid  of Daylight  Saving Time,  and                                                               
almost all  of them - once  they realized how they  would lose an                                                               
hour of light in the evening,  during which they could be walking                                                               
their dogs,  cooking outdoors,  and play  sports -  changed their                                                               
minds.   He said he  thinks that would also  be the case  if that                                                               
information had  been part  of the survey  and people  taking the                                                               
survey  realized how  things would  change.   He said,  "The fall                                                               
would experience  a three-week change.   The daylight we  have on                                                               
September 15th  would then become  the daylight on  August 26th."                                                               
He said all the activities that  occur in the evening "would take                                                               
a  three-week hit."    He warned  that  the proposed  legislation                                                               
would have  a negative  effect on the  state's economy,  which he                                                               
said the state could not endure at this point in its history.                                                                   
9:31:25 AM                                                                                                                    
PATTI  MACKEY, President/CEO,  Ketchikan  Visitors Bureau  (KVB),                                                               
noted that KVB had sent a  resolution to the committee to express                                                               
concerns  about  the proposed  legislation.    In response  to  a                                                               
previous testifier's reference to  the cruise industry, she said,                                                               
"The cruise  lines will do what  the cruise lines will  do."  She                                                               
stated,  "But when  over 93  percent of  businesses in  Ketchikan                                                               
that cater  to the tourism  trade are  residents of the  state of                                                               
Alaska or Ketchikan,  it is a very big concern  to my community."                                                               
She  said  Ketchikan's  unique  problem  regarding  the  proposed                                                               
legislation is  not so much  about the time  zone as it  is about                                                               
"the time in hours  away."  She said SB 6  would put Ketchikan at                                                               
a disadvantage in  securing the tourist trade  from visitors that                                                               
are on  ships that  are leaving  Alaska.   She explained  that 50                                                               
percent of  the ships that  visit Ketchikan  are doing so  at the                                                               
end of  their voyage, and under  SB 6, those ships  would have to                                                               
leave  one hour  earlier.    Based on  last  year's figures,  she                                                               
estimated that Ketchikan could lose  $9 million, just in sales of                                                               
products  and services;  that figure  does not  include municipal                                                               
sales tax and other revenues that would  be lost as a result of a                                                               
shorter port  stay.  She relayed  that in 2016 and  beyond, there                                                               
would be an increase in  the number of people visiting Ketchikan.                                                               
She  concluded,  "This is  ...  a  very  serious concern  to  the                                                               
business  economy  of  Ketchikan,  and  I  would  just  urge  the                                                               
committee to  please keep that  in consideration as  you consider                                                               
this bill."                                                                                                                     
RACHEL  PETRO,  CEO, Alaska  State  Chamber  of Commerce  (ASCC),                                                               
relayed that ASCC represents businesses  throughout the state and                                                               
is the  only industry association that  represents every industry                                                               
sector in  the state.   She said  ASCC also represents  almost 40                                                               
local chambers  of commerce throughout  Alaska, and it  serves as                                                               
representative to  the National  Association of  Manufacturers in                                                               
MS. PETRO  said the  purpose of  ASCC is to  create a  viable and                                                               
thriving economy  in Alaska; therefore,  its members  are focused                                                               
on policies that  support that goal.  She indicated  she had also                                                               
sent a letter  to the committee.  She stated  that businesses are                                                               
not currently  experiencing a problem with  Daylight Saving Time.                                                               
She explained that she knew that  because each year ASCC asks its                                                               
members what issues need to  be addressed as a statewide business                                                               
community,  and Daylight  Saving Time  is  not an  issue that  is                                                               
raised.    She  surmised  that   the  reaction  to  the  proposed                                                               
legislation being heard today was  because "changing will have an                                                               
effect."   She said,  "We wouldn't  be here  unless this  ... had                                                               
been brought up."                                                                                                               
MS.  PETRO  stated  that  in 2009,  ASCC  surveyed  its  business                                                               
members, and  over 70 percent  of them  did not support  a change                                                               
[to Daylight  Saving Time].   Today, ASCC still does  not support                                                               
"moving Alaska further away and  changing those time zones."  She                                                               
said ASCC would  be "very supportive" of a national  change.  She                                                               
said  not every  business would  be affected  equally; therefore,                                                               
some  businesses  would  not  be  weighing  in  on  the  proposed                                                               
legislation.    She  stated  ASCC's  belief  that  [the  negative                                                               
effects of]  eliminating Daylight Saving Time  would outweigh any                                                               
potential benefits.                                                                                                             
9:37:19 AM                                                                                                                    
MS. PETRO referred to Ms.  Mackey's testimony about the potential                                                               
loss of $9  million a year, and said Ketchikan  is expecting even                                                               
more visitors this year, so that  could be a serious impact.  She                                                               
reminded the  committee that this  number was in regard  to local                                                               
businesses -  not the  cruise ship industry.   She  surmised that                                                               
everyone  who  had testified  would  be  fine with  a  nationwide                                                               
elimination  of Daylight  Saving  Time, but  she reiterated  that                                                               
ASCC opposes SB 6.                                                                                                              
9:38:42 AM                                                                                                                    
ROSIE ROPPEL stated  that she has lived in  Ketchikan since 1954,                                                               
before Alaska  was a  state and  before Ketchikan  separated from                                                               
Pacific Standard Time.  She stated  that she has been an educator                                                               
for 35 years  in Ketchikan.  She explained that  although she was                                                               
testifying on  behalf of herself,  her observations  working with                                                               
students in schools and parents  after school has something to do                                                               
with  her  opposition to  the  proposed  elimination of  Daylight                                                               
Saving Time  in Alaska.  She  pointed out that Ketchikan  is 700-                                                               
plus  miles  from Anchorage,  south  in  latitude, and  "more  in                                                               
longitude with  Seattle."   She indicated  that back  when Alaska                                                               
had been  on the same  time as the  Pacific Coast, sunset  was at                                                               
9:30  p.m.   After  switching to  Alaska  Standard Time,  [during                                                               
Daylight Saving  Time] the sunset  is at 8:30  p.m.  Under  SB 6,                                                               
sunset would be at  7:30 p.m.  She said that is a  lot of time to                                                               
lose.  She  stated, "Little kids are going to  be walking home in                                                               
the dark."                                                                                                                      
MS. ROPPEL,  regarding the concern  about health, said  she knows                                                               
that kids  like to  start school  later and stay  up later.   She                                                               
said, "I'm a  secondary and university level teacher,  and I know                                                               
that  that does  affect test  scores.   We also  know that  food,                                                               
prior to  taking a  test affects  test scores."   She  stated her                                                               
belief  that  "any  study  can  prove  anything  you  want,"  but                                                               
educators know that  it has been proven  repeatedly that children                                                               
really need to  go to school later, but because  of bus schedules                                                               
and other factors,  that does not happen.  She  said she is "like                                                               
the  Anchorage  people  that  like to  recreate  outside."    She                                                               
speculated that  most Alaskans do.   She said she knows  that the                                                               
people  living in  Alaska's rail  belt and  in Bristol  Bay don't                                                               
experience the  same issues with  light that people  in Ketchikan                                                               
9:41:13 AM                                                                                                                    
MS. ROPPEL said although she  understands the business standpoint                                                               
of having  one time zone,  she would like see  Southeast Alaska's                                                               
70,000  be put  back on  Pacific Standard  Time.   She reiterated                                                               
that  she  would like  Ketchikan  to  [continue to  use  Daylight                                                               
Saving Time].                                                                                                                   
9:42:09 AM                                                                                                                    
LYNN WILLIS, testified in support of  SB 6.  He said five similar                                                               
bills had  been introduced in previous  legislatures, since 1999,                                                               
but despite some legislative progress,  all of them were "held to                                                               
death"  before   various  committees,  "where  hearing   a  final                                                               
committee decision was  denied."  He questioned  what other state                                                               
issue had been so vetted over time.  He continued as follows:                                                                   
     Now,  after all  that inquiry,  what is  the clear  and                                                                    
     compelling reason to force  the entire state population                                                                    
     of  Alaska   -  except   for  those  residing   in  the                                                                    
     Hawaiian/Aleutian time zone, to change  the time of day                                                                    
     twice each  year and deal  with what amounts  to state-                                                                    
     mandated jetlag.  Only energy  savings are mentioned as                                                                    
     a public benefit Congress found  would be seen by using                                                                    
     Daylight  Saving Time.   Any  other  public benefit  is                                                                    
     described by using  the words "may" or  "should."  What                                                                    
     energy  savings,  due to  the  use  of Daylight  Saving                                                                    
     Time, are  being realized  by Alaskans?   If  they were                                                                    
     there, you would  have heard it.   Daylight Saving Time                                                                    
     is  not intended  primarily to  enhance commerce;  time                                                                    
     zones  are  intended  to enhance  commerce,  and  SB  6                                                                    
     allows  for  that  discussion.   Alaskans  must  pursue                                                                    
     their  endeavors  when   their  efforts  are  required;                                                                    
     therefore,  how can  you, with  any sense  of fairness,                                                                    
     favor  one  profession  or  practice  over  another  by                                                                    
     forcing  an entire  state  population  to support  what                                                                    
     arguably  amounts   to  the  personal   convenience  or                                                                    
     financial benefit of  a few.  You cannot  make a period                                                                    
     of daylight any  longer by simply changing  the time of                                                                    
     day.  Remember:   for every hour you  delay sunset, you                                                                    
     equally delay sunrise the next  morning.  Morning light                                                                    
     is just as important to  some Alaskans as evening light                                                                    
     is to  others.   Besides, we  live in  the land  of the                                                                    
     midnight   sun,  where   naturally  changing   daylight                                                                    
     quickly  offsets any  artificial delay  in the  time of                                                                    
     Alaska's constitution  grants the right of  privacy, so                                                                    
     how can  you be affording Alaskans  that constitutional                                                                    
     right when  you insist that the  state government enter                                                                    
     their home  at 2 a.m.,  twice each year, to  force them                                                                    
     to  change the  time  of day  for  no clear  compelling                                                                    
     reason?  So,  after seeing all the  private efforts, my                                                                    
     optimism is jaded.   I request you move  this bill from                                                                    
     your  committee or  offer a  specific justification  of                                                                    
     why you won't.  Thank you.                                                                                                 
9:44:53 AM                                                                                                                    
CRAIG  FISHER specified  that  although he  is  a small  business                                                               
owner,  he was  testifying on  behalf of  himself.   He explained                                                               
that  he  came  before  the  committee  in  person  to  show  how                                                               
important  the  issue  is  to   him  and  because  the  real-time                                                               
interaction regarding  SB 6 is important.   He said that  is what                                                               
drives  his  opposition to  SB  6.    He  explained that  he  has                                                               
customers,  vendors,  and  partners  all over  the  country,  and                                                               
interacting with them  in real time is important.   When he shows                                                               
up at work  at 8:30 a.m., it  is already 12:30 p.m.  in New York,                                                               
which  leaves about  four hours  - a  concentrated time  - to  do                                                               
business with  those on  the East  Coast.  He  said he  has staff                                                               
that  have to  be  ready to  take  on line  training  at 4  a.m.,                                                               
because it starts at 8 a.m. on  the East Coast.  He said [without                                                               
Daylight Saving  Time], a 3  a.m. start time would  be necessary,                                                               
and  is "just  one  thing worse."   He  indicated  that he  would                                                               
support the entire country doing  away with Daylight Saving Time.                                                               
He said,  "I want  to see that  we stay in  synch, as  closely as                                                               
possible, with  the rest of the  country."  I don't  want to have                                                               
to look  at a calendar  to find out what  time it is  in Seattle,                                                               
and -  more importantly -  I don't  want my business  partners in                                                               
New York  to have to  do the same."   In response to  Chair Lynn,                                                               
Mr. Fisher said he owns a consulting firm.                                                                                      
9:47:45 AM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR  LYNN  noted  that  there  were  seven  others  waiting  to                                                               
testify, but  he wished to pause  to make some comments  about SB
6.  He opined that there  had been interesting testimony about an                                                               
important bill, with a lot of  ramifications.  He noted that [the                                                               
first half  of the Twenty-Ninth  Legislative Session]  was almost                                                               
at an end.  He stated  his intention to appoint a subcommittee to                                                               
dig more deeply  into the issue during the interim  and return to                                                               
it in January.                                                                                                                  
9:49:24 AM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR LYNN,  after conferring with  both minority members  on the                                                               
committee, appointed  the following members to  a subcommittee on                                                               
SB 6:  Representative  Kreiss-Tomkins, Representative Keller, and                                                               
Representative  Vazquez,  with   Representative  Keller  as  vice                                                               
chair.    He invited  anyone  else  on  the House  State  Affairs                                                               
Standing Committee to participate.                                                                                              
9:50:20 AM                                                                                                                    
CHELSEA  GOUCHER,   Executive  Director,  Ketchikan   Chamber  of                                                               
Commerce, testified  in opposition to  SB 6.  She  stated concern                                                               
that  with the  passage of  SB 6,  when the  rest of  the country                                                               
shifts to Daylight Saving Time,  Alaska would be two hours behind                                                               
Seattle, and southbound cruise ships  would have to leave an hour                                                               
earlier  to  achieve parity  with  Pacific  Daylight Time.    She                                                               
echoed the  testimony of Ms.  Mackey that as a  result, Ketchikan                                                               
could lose $9 million.   Further, she expressed concern that when                                                               
the  rest of  the country  returned  to Standard  Time, it  would                                                               
complicate  communications  -   particularly  the  scheduling  of                                                               
teleconferences and appointments.   She said businesses in Alaska                                                               
might have to  shift their start times to earlier  in the day for                                                               
half  the year,  and  then  switch back,  in  order  to not  lose                                                               
valuable time with partners on the East Coast.                                                                                  
MS  GOUCHER said  under SB  6,  sunset during  the summer  months                                                               
would  occur an  hour earlier,  which would  detrimentally impact                                                               
flight operations,  marine charters,  shore businesses,  and "the                                                               
safety  of shift  worker transportation."   She  said individuals                                                               
would lose  opportunities for recreational activities,  and those                                                               
who  depend  upon  subsistence   activities  would  suffer,  both                                                               
culturally and economically, with  the earlier onset of darkness.                                                               
She  said commercial  fishermen would  be forced  to shift  their                                                               
schedules to wake  up by 2 a.m.  or 3 a.m., in  order to maximize                                                               
their  fishing  time.   She  warned  there  would  be a  rise  in                                                               
programming  costs for  transportation, shipping,  logistics, and                                                               
broadcasting businesses   Municipal governments, such  as that in                                                               
Ketchikan, would lose sales tax  revenue because of losses in the                                                               
tourism  sector,  and  "the  negative  trickle-down  effect  will                                                               
damage sales  at those businesses,  which support  other directly                                                               
impacted  sectors."   Ms. Goucher  emphasized doing  all that  is                                                               
possible  to protect  those parts  of the  economy that  generate                                                               
revenue for the state and its people.                                                                                           
MS.  GOUCHER said  the  only acceptable  compromise  would be  to                                                               
ensure that if Daylight Saving  Time is repealed, Alaska would be                                                               
moved  to Pacific  Standard Time;  however, she  said doing  that                                                               
would be  complicated by  the size  of Alaska.   She  asked, "How                                                               
would  that [emphasis  on "that"]  impact Western  Alaska?"   She                                                               
said  populations  such  as  Anchorage,  Fairbanks,  Juneau,  and                                                               
Ketchikan  must   be  able  to   do  business  with   each  other                                                               
efficiently, and making multiple time  zones would be an "equally                                                               
messy proposition."   She  stated that  the Ketchikan  Chamber of                                                               
Commerce feels  strongly that  the best  option for  all Alaskans                                                               
would  be   to  maintain  Daylight   Saving  Time   and  continue                                                               
operations as they  currently exist.  She asked  the committee to                                                               
consider  the  proposed  legislation  carefully  and  oppose  the                                                               
elimination of Daylight Saving Time.                                                                                            
9:53:13 AM                                                                                                                    
TOM  WILLIAMS,   Financial  Officer,   Ward  Air,   testified  in                                                               
opposition to  SB 6.  He  related that he  is also an owner  of a                                                               
vacation  rental business.   He  noted that  Ward Air  is an  on-                                                               
demand  charter  air  company  that  provides  service  to  local                                                               
people,  businesses, government,  and tourists.   He  opined that                                                               
while the original bill version of  SB 6 was harmful to Alaskans,                                                               
the committee substitute  passed out of the Senate  could do more                                                               
harm by  potentially allowing  for the  possibility of  many time                                                               
zones for  Alaska -  a decision  that could be  made by  the U.S.                                                               
Department of  Transportation.   He said  this could  "reignite a                                                               
capital move issue."                                                                                                            
MR. WILLIAMS said he thinks  there are four critical questions to                                                               
ask  when   deciding  whether  to   proceed  with   the  proposed                                                               
legislation.  The first question  is whether eliminating Daylight                                                               
Saving Time  would get rid  of the annoying practice  of changing                                                               
clocks  twice  a  year.    He prefaced  the  second  question  by                                                               
reminding  the committee  that the  bill sponsor  had said  there                                                               
really  was no  hard data  relative to  the concern  about health                                                               
issues, and  he posited that  it is incumbent upon  the committee                                                               
and the legislature  as a whole not to make  a significant change                                                               
that  would affect  all  Alaskans, based  on no  hard  data.   He                                                               
indicated  the  second  question  would  be  whether  eliminating                                                               
Daylight  Saving  Time would  result  in  healthy Alaskans.    He                                                               
answered probably  some, but said  it also has the  potential for                                                               
causing more health issues.  He  said total daylight hours do not                                                               
change; the  changes would be  in regard  to when Alaska  goes to                                                               
work and gets off  of work.  He said gaining an  hour of light in                                                               
the evening  and being  able to enjoy  outdoor activities  is not                                                               
only a  benefit to businesses,  but also  to the health  of every                                                               
Alaskan.   He talked about the  effect of changing the  timing of                                                               
light on those  with Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD).   He said                                                               
most people  are not going  to get up at  3 a.m. just  because it                                                               
may  be  light out  then,  because  "our  cycles are  not  geared                                                               
towards that."   He stated that  having as many evening  hours of                                                               
daylight in the summer is a health boon.                                                                                        
MR.  WILLIAMS said  the  third question  is:   Would  eliminating                                                               
Daylight Saving Time have adverse  effects on Alaskans?  He said,                                                               
"Absolutely.   You've heard those  reasons over and  over again."                                                               
He said  there would  eight months during  which Alaska  would be                                                               
"two  hours out  of synch  with the  Lower 48."   He  added, "And                                                               
obviously,  it provides  less time  ... for  business to  provide                                                               
light-dependent  business services."    He  indicated the  fourth                                                               
question had  to do with  whether it  would be beneficial  to put                                                               
Southeast Alaska on  Pacific Time in order to  alleviate "some of                                                               
the economic  problems."  He said  yes, but warned it  may create                                                               
more.   He said he knows  USDOT's focus is on  economic activity,                                                               
which he  said he thinks is  "a very important element  of this."                                                               
He  said when  he first  came to  Juneau, Alaska  was on  several                                                               
different time zones.  At that  time there was a big effort being                                                               
made to move the capital  because it was difficult to effectively                                                               
communicate or coordinate  activities between Southcentral Alaska                                                               
and the capital in Southeast Alaska.   He said he thinks it would                                                               
create a problem  if the state were to end  up with multiple time                                                               
9:57:37 AM                                                                                                                    
MR.  WILLIAMS,  referring  to  the   sponsor's  remark  that  the                                                               
proposed  legislation  is  based  on people  and  businesses  can                                                               
adjust, stated that  "we're all Alaskans."  He  stated that there                                                               
are some larger  business interests, but he has  a small business                                                               
and he is  an individual.  He warned  against pitting individuals                                                               
against businesses.   He said, "We're all  Alaskans; we're trying                                                               
to make  this state work  to all our  benefit."  He  echoed Chair                                                               
Lynn's  comment  that  the  state   will  be  facing  significant                                                               
financial issues  as it downsizes  government.  He said,  "We are                                                               
going to have  a double whammy if this bill  passes, and not just                                                               
in Southeast, Alaska;  it's going to be all over  this state.  If                                                               
we were ever going  to do it, now is not  [emphasis on "not"] the                                                               
time; now is  the worst time."  Notwithstanding that,  he said if                                                               
the committee  felt compelled to move  out some version of  SB 6,                                                               
he  would recommend  the bill  be amended  to ask  USDOT to  keep                                                               
Alaska  on one  time  zone, but  to consider  "whether  we go  to                                                               
Pacific"; and  to not  make any changes  in Daylight  Saving Time                                                               
until USDOT would authorize us, as  a state, to all go to Pacific                                                               
Daylight Time."                                                                                                                 
9:59:11 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE  KELLER  asked  Mr.  Williams  to  clarify  if  he                                                               
thought  the capital  move effort  in  the past  had been  solely                                                               
based on the state being in different time zones.                                                                               
MR. WILLIAMS responded  that his work back then  had been related                                                               
to  legislative  audits,  and   there  were  coordination  issues                                                               
brought  forth by  many people.    He said  he was  happy to  see                                                               
Alaska  go to  "one consolidated  time," because  he said  it was                                                               
good for  the state.   He said he would  hate to see  it reverted                                                               
back to  a system that  would divide the  state again -  not just                                                               
because of the capital issue,  but also for "basic internal state                                                               
commerce; [the]  same sort  of ... commerce  issues that  we have                                                               
with down south."                                                                                                               
10:00:29 AM                                                                                                                   
CHAIR LYNN  stated that  the committee  had run  out of  time and                                                               
would not hear further testimony at the present meeting.                                                                        
10:00:38 AM                                                                                                                   
CHAIR LYNN announced that SB 6 was held over.                                                                                   

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
01 CS SB 6 (FIN) Version P.pdf HSTA 4/9/2015 8:00:00 AM
SB 6
02 CS SB 6 (FIN) Sponsor Statement.pdf HSTA 4/9/2015 8:00:00 AM
SB 6
03 CS SB 6 (FIN) Summary of Changes v.H to v.P.pdf HSTA 4/9/2015 8:00:00 AM
SB 6
04 CS SB 6 (FIN)-Sectional Analysis.pdf HSTA 4/9/2015 8:00:00 AM
SB 6
05 SB 6 Fiscal Note-DOA-FAC-2-06-15.pdf HSTA 4/9/2015 8:00:00 AM
SB 6
06 SB 6 Opposing Documents-Alaska Chamber 3-04-2015.pdf HSTA 4/9/2015 8:00:00 AM
SB 6
07 SB 6 Opposing Documents-Juneau Chamber of Commerce 3-2-2015.pdf HSTA 4/9/2015 8:00:00 AM
SB 6
08 SB 6 Opposing Documents-Juneau Charter Boat Operators Association 03-13-2015.pdf HSTA 4/9/2015 8:00:00 AM
SB 6
09 SB 6 Opposing Documents-KCAM Radio 03-04-2015.pdf HSTA 4/9/2015 8:00:00 AM
SB 6
10 SB 6 Opposing Documents-Ketchikan Visitors Bureau 03-02-2015.pdf HSTA 4/9/2015 8:00:00 AM
SB 6
11 SB 6 Opposing Documents-Raymond Nesbett 03-09-2015.pdf HSTA 4/9/2015 8:00:00 AM
SB 6
12 SB 6 Supporting Documents-Arctic Controls, Inc. 02-03-2015.pdf HSTA 4/9/2015 8:00:00 AM
SB 6
13 SB 6 Supporting Documents-First National Bank -Cuddy Letter 02-03-2015.pdf HSTA 4/9/2015 8:00:00 AM
SB 6
14 SB 6 Supporting Documents-NFIB 01-30-2015.pdf HSTA 4/9/2015 8:00:00 AM
SB 6
15 SB6 Supporting Document - Daylight Gains by City.pdf HSTA 4/9/2015 8:00:00 AM
SB 6
16 SB6 Supporting Document - DST Online Survey Results.pdf HSTA 4/9/2015 8:00:00 AM
SB 6
17 CS SB 6 (FIN) Supporting Document - Impact by Department.pdf HSTA 4/9/2015 8:00:00 AM
SB 6
18 SB6 Supporting Document - BizhubGlennallen20150406141842.pdf HSTA 4/9/2015 8:00:00 AM
SB 6
19 SB6 PDF 1 of 2 emails in favor OR opposed.PDF HSTA 4/9/2015 8:00:00 AM
SB 6
20 SB6 PDF 2 of 2 emails in favor OR opposed.PDF HSTA 4/9/2015 8:00:00 AM
SB 6
01 HJR022A.pdf HSTA 4/9/2015 8:00:00 AM
HJR 22
02 HJR 22 Sponsor Statement.pdf HSTA 4/9/2015 8:00:00 AM
HJR 22
03 HJR22-LEG-SESS-04-08-15.pdf HSTA 4/9/2015 8:00:00 AM
HJR 22
01 HB0180A.pdf HSTA 4/9/2015 8:00:00 AM
HB 180
02 HB180 Sponsor Statement.PDF HSTA 4/9/2015 8:00:00 AM
HB 180
03 HB180 Supporting Document-Children's Day.PDF HSTA 4/9/2015 8:00:00 AM
HB 180
04 HB180 Supporting Document- Letter Gary Miller 4-07-2015.PDF HSTA 4/9/2015 8:00:00 AM
HB 180
05 HB180 Supporting Document- Letter NEA Alaska 4-08-2015.pdf HSTA 4/9/2015 8:00:00 AM
HB 180
06 HB180 Supporting Document- email Myrna Lugo 4-08-2015.PDF HSTA 4/9/2015 8:00:00 AM
HB 180