Legislature(2015 - 2016)CAPITOL 106

03/22/2016 08:00 AM House STATE AFFAIRS

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* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
Moved HB 299 Out of Committee
Moved CSHB 275 (STA) Out of Committee
+ Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled TELECONFERENCED
                 HB 275-INDIGENOUS PEOPLES DAY                                                                              
9:07:15 AM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR LYNN  announced that the  final order of business  would be                                                               
HOUSE BILL  NO. 275,  "An Act establishing  the second  Monday of                                                               
October of each year as Indigenous Peoples Day."                                                                                
9:07:18 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE  HARRIET DRUMMOND,  Alaska  State Legislature,  as                                                               
prime sponsor  of HB 275,  stated that at  a time when  Alaska is                                                               
facing an  unprecedented economic  crisis, "let's  remember those                                                               
who  have gone  before us  and who  faced far  greater challenges                                                               
than we  do, and  who adapted, and  engineered, and  created, and                                                               
survived."   She said  that "indigenous people  have ties  to the                                                               
landscape  that  are  immeasurable  and are  reflected  in  their                                                               
spirituality, culture,  and life."  Representative  Drummond said                                                               
that  Alaska's   indigenous  people  include  the   Dena'ina  and                                                               
Kenaitze  of  Southcentral  Alaska, the  Chugachmuit,  Eyak,  and                                                               
Alutiiq people  of the  Alaska Peninsula  and Kodiak  Island, the                                                               
many  Athabascan  tribes of  the  Interior,  the Inupiaq  of  the                                                               
Northwest Arctic and North Slope,  the Yupik and Chupik people of                                                               
Western Alaska,  the Aleut people  of the Aleutian chain  and the                                                               
Pribilofs,  and the  Tlingit, Haida,  and Tsimshian  of Southeast                                                               
Alaska.  She continued as follows:                                                                                              
     Our  history  as  Americans   is  one  of  interactions                                                                    
     between  peoples  of  many cultures:    some  of  these                                                                    
     interactions have been  violent; some interactions have                                                                    
     been borne  of mutual  misunderstanding; and  some have                                                                    
     given birth  to the cultural, societal,  and civic ties                                                                    
     that we share as Americans and as Alaskans.                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE DRUMMOND went on to  say that America was built by                                                               
indigenous   people,    explorers,   pioneers,    settlers,   and                                                               
immigrants, whose  descendants live in the  world their ancestors                                                               
made.  She said the  celebration of Columbus Day recognizes "just                                                               
one shared piece of our  shared story."  The proposed legislation                                                               
would broaden recognition to also  include "the indigenous people                                                               
of North  America and around  the world who have  weathered great                                                               
indignities  and  dire  circumstances  and have  emerged  as  key                                                               
leaders, role models,  and partners around the globe  and here in                                                               
REPRESENTATIVE  DRUMMOND  stated  that  HB  275  would  establish                                                               
Indigenous Peoples  Day "to  remember, not just  our debt  to and                                                               
respect for Alaska's first people,  but to acknowledge our shared                                                               
destiny  as we  confront our  challenges today."   She  mentioned                                                               
that Governor Walker  proclaimed the second Monday  in October as                                                               
Indigenous  Peoples Day  for 2015,  and the  proposed legislation                                                               
would establish Indigenous Peoples Day as a yearly tradition.                                                                   
9:11:15 AM                                                                                                                    
ELIZABETH   MEDICINE   CROW,    President/CEO,   First   Alaskans                                                               
Institute, testified in support of HB  275 on behalf of the First                                                               
Alaskans Institute.  She thanked  Representative Drummond and her                                                               
staff for  their work  on the proposed  legislation.   She stated                                                               
her  belief  that  establishing   Indigenous  Peoples  Day  would                                                               
commemorate  the  legacy  of  the  indigenous  people  in  Alaska                                                               
throughout  their  10,000-year  history.    She  maintained  that                                                               
Alaska is home to the  largest population of indigenous people in                                                               
the United  States; indigenous people  make up almost  20 percent                                                               
of the state's population.  She  suggested that HB 275 would have                                                               
importance nationally,  as well  as, in  Alaska.   She reiterated                                                               
Representative  Drummond's  claim  that "the  indigenous  peoples                                                               
across the  world have  played significant  roles in  shaping the                                                               
landscape  and  the  destiny  of   their  land,  and  in  Alaska,                                                               
embracing the indigenous  peoples and the history  and the legacy                                                               
that we have here  is an embracing of not just  our past but also                                                               
our future."                                                                                                                    
9:14:04 AM                                                                                                                    
MS. MEDICINE  CROW, in  response to Chair  Lynn, stated  that the                                                               
First  Alaskans  Institute  is   a  nonprofit  organization  that                                                               
represents  Alaska   Natives  and   is  involved   in  leadership                                                               
development, policy, and community engagement.                                                                                  
9:14:58 AM                                                                                                                    
CONNIE MUNRO, Alaska Native Sisterhood  (ANS) Camp 2, stated that                                                               
she was  testifying in  support of  HB 275 on  behalf of  the ANS                                                               
Camp 2 legislative  committee.  She emphasized  the importance of                                                               
HB 275 to the Tlingit  community and the non-Tlingit community as                                                               
ANS and Alaska Native Brotherhood (ANB)  are open to anyone.  She                                                               
maintained  the  importance  of  recognizing  Alaska  Natives  as                                                               
partners in  life.   She lamented  that the  second verse  of the                                                               
Alaska  Flag song,  recognizing  Alaska Natives,  was never  made                                                               
official  by the  governor.   She  emphasized  the importance  of                                                               
Indigenous Peoples  Day, especially in  October when it  could be                                                               
recognized  in the  schools.   She  urged full  support from  the                                                               
House of Representatives and the Senate for HB 275.                                                                             
9:19:24 AM                                                                                                                    
KATHERINE  HOPE, Alaska  Native Sisterhood  (ANS) Camp  2, stated                                                               
that   she  supports   HB  275   and  wants   her  children   and                                                               
grandchildren to be  recognized on Indigenous Peoples  Day and be                                                               
proud of who they are.  She  said that she was taught respect for                                                               
all Native clans  at Sheldon Jackson High School.   She also said                                                               
that she  is a lead host  for Mount Roberts Tramway  and promotes                                                               
indigenous people of Alaska to tourists from all over the world.                                                                
9:21:35 AM                                                                                                                    
JUNE  DEGNAN, Chair,  Haven House,  stated that  Haven House,  in                                                               
Juneau, Alaska,  is a  transitional home for  women.   She opined                                                               
that it is  important for people to recognize that  Alaska is the                                                               
home of  Alaska Natives.   She  went on to  say that  her father,                                                               
Frank  A. Degnan,  was  the co-founder  of  Alaska Federation  of                                                               
Natives  (AFN) and  the first  Yupik elected  to the  territorial                                                               
legislature.    She  expressed her  belief  that  the  indigenous                                                               
people are  in the background in  Alaska.  She cited  the role of                                                               
AFN in securing  title to 44 million acres of  land for 12 Native                                                               
corporations and  200 tribes.   She emphasized the  importance of                                                               
the  state  recognizing  the  partnership  with  Alaska  Natives,                                                               
especially in light  of the budget deficit.  She  claimed that as                                                               
a teacher  and professor, she  was unable  to be hired  in Alaska                                                               
due to  racism.  She  urged the state  to engage all  Alaskans as                                                               
equal  partners and  stated  her belief  that  recognizing a  day                                                               
honoring  indigenous peoples  will  help toward  that  end.   She                                                               
cited  the  high  incarceration  rates of  Alaska  Natives  -  48                                                               
percent of  the incarcerated population  - to explain  her motive                                                               
for forming her own 501(c)(3) to start Haven House.                                                                             
9:25:44 AM                                                                                                                    
MS. DEGNAN,  in response to  Chair Lynn, reaffirmed that  she was                                                               
unable to  secure a job  with the state  and stated that  she has                                                               
Master's degrees  both in library information  science and public                                                               
CHAIR LYNN, after  ascertaining no one wished  to testify, closed                                                               
public testimony on HB 275.                                                                                                     
9:27:08 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE KELLER moved  to adopt Amendment 1,  which read as                                                               
     Page 1, line 1:                                                                                                            
          Delete "the second Monday of October of each year                                                                   
     Page 1, line 6:                                                                                                            
          Delete "second Monday"                                                                                                
          Insert "18th day"                                                                                                     
     Page 1, line 6, following "year":                                                                                          
          Insert ", also known as Alaska Day"                                                                                   
CHAIR LYNN objected for purpose of discussion.                                                                                  
REPRESENTATIVE KELLER  expressed his recognition of  the pain and                                                               
frustration  of  indigenous  people.   He  conceded  that  Alaska                                                               
Natives have  had a tremendous  influence on shaping Alaska.   He                                                               
noted his  positive interactions  with Alaska Natives  during the                                                               
summers he spent  in communities in the North Slope  Borough.  He                                                               
mentioned specific  Alaska Native individuals who  shaped Alaska,                                                               
including Walter  Sobeloff and  Samuel Simmonds.   Representative                                                               
Keller  explained that  the proposed  amendment would  change the                                                               
title  of  HB 275  and  the  day  of recognition  for  Indigenous                                                               
Peoples Day  to the 18th day  of October, which is  also known as                                                               
Alaska Day.                                                                                                                     
9:33:20 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE STUTES stated her support  for the date change and                                                               
expressed  her   belief  that  HB  275   would  give  significant                                                               
recognition  to  Native  people and  their  contributions.    She                                                               
related  the  experiences  of her  grandparents  as  teachers  in                                                               
Native communities in Alaska in the '20s.                                                                                       
9:35:26 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE KREISS-TOMKINS asked if the  sponsor of HB 275 had                                                               
thoughts on Amendment 1.                                                                                                        
REPRESENTATIVE DRUMMOND  offered her support for  the date change                                                               
in the proposed amendment.                                                                                                      
CHAIR LYNN removed his objection to  Amendment 1.  There being no                                                               
further objection, Amendment 1 was adopted.                                                                                     
REPRESENTATIVE KELLER moved to report  HB 275, as amended, out of                                                               
committee  with individual  recommendations and  the accompanying                                                               
fiscal  notes.   There  being  no  objection, CSHB  275(STA)  was                                                               
reported out of the House State Affairs Standing Committee.                                                                     

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
01 HB 299A.pdf HSTA 3/22/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 299
02 HB 299 Sponsor Statement.pdf HSTA 3/22/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 299
03 HB 299 Letter of Support - Flynn.PDF HSTA 3/22/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 299
04 HB 299 Letter of Support - Hansen.PDF HSTA 3/22/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 299
05 HB 299 Letter of Support -Nebert.PDF HSTA 3/22/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 299
06 HB 299 Letter of Support - Crouch.PDF HSTA 3/22/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 299
07 HB 299 Fiscal Note - DOA CAS - 3-18-2016.pdf HSTA 3/22/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 299
01 HB 275 Version A.pdf HSTA 3/22/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 275
02 HB 275 Sponsor Statement.pdf HSTA 3/22/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 275
03 HB 275 Supporting Documents - Letter SHI.pdf HSTA 3/22/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 275
04 HB 275 Supporting Documents - Letter TCC.pdf HSTA 3/22/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 275
05 HB 275 Supporting Documents -Governor Walker Proclamation.pdf HSTA 3/22/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 275
06 HB 275 Supporting Documents --Letter Benson.pdf HSTA 3/22/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 275
07 HB 275 Supporting Documents- Letter WIlliams.pdf HSTA 3/22/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 275
08 HB 275 Fiscal Note LEG-SESS-02-06-16.pdf HSTA 3/22/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 275
09 HB275 Fiscal Note - DOA-GS-Facilities.pdf HSTA 3/22/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 275
10 HB 275 Supporting Documents -- Mayor Berkowitz.pdf HSTA 3/22/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 275
11 HB 275 Letter of Support - Doyon HB 275 SB 159.pdf HSTA 3/22/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 275
SB 159
12 HB 275 Support Letter - Edwardson.pdf HSTA 3/22/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 275
13 HB 275 Indigenous Peoples Day resolution.PDF HSTA 3/22/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 275
08 HB 299 Supporting Document - AK Municipal League Resolution.pdf HSTA 3/22/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 299
09 HB 299 Supporting Document - Ketchikan Gateway Borough Resolution.pdf HSTA 3/22/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 299
10 HB 299 Supporting Document - Case Summary.PDF HSTA 3/22/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 299
11 HB 299 - Supporting Document - Dolan VS King County.pdf HSTA 3/22/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 299