Legislature(2017 - 2018)GRUENBERG 120

04/26/2018 03:15 PM House STATE AFFAIRS

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03:18:45 PM Start
03:18:50 PM Presentation on Vote by Mail Municipal Election
03:34:18 PM Presentation by the Division of Elections: 2017 Fiscal & Policy Challenges
04:24:45 PM HB408
04:58:46 PM Adjourn
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
Heard & Held
+ Approval of introduction of potential committee TELECONFERENCED
<Above Item Removed from Agenda>
+ Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled TELECONFERENCED
             HB 408-REVOCATION OF DRIVER'S LICENSE                                                                          
4:24:45 PM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR KREISS-TOMKINS  announced that the final  order of business                                                               
would be HOUSE BILL NO. 408,  "An Act relating to revocation of a                                                               
driver's license."                                                                                                              
4:25:23 PM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE  GABRIELLE   LEDOUX,  on   behalf  of   the  House                                                               
Judiciary  Committee,  presented  HB  408.   She  said  that  the                                                               
impetus for  HB 408 was brought  forth by a constituent  who will                                                               
testify on his  experience; however, this bill  also would affect                                                               
many  other people.  She paraphrased  from  a sponsor  statement,                                                               
which read as follows [original punctuation provided]:                                                                          
     In  Alaska,   a  person  who  has   had  their  license                                                                    
     permanently  revoked due  to  alcohol related  offenses                                                                    
     can apply  to have  their driver's license  restored if                                                                    
     10  years have  passed  since the  revocation and  they                                                                    
     have not  been convicted of a  driving-related criminal                                                                    
     offense  in   that  time.   However,  if   someone  was                                                                    
     convicted  of   any  driving-related  crime   (such  as                                                                    
     driving without a  license) any time after  the date of                                                                    
     revocation, their  license may never be  restored under                                                                    
     current law.                                                                                                               
4:26:45 PM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE  LEDOUX  explained  the limited  exception.    She                                                               
related that  if a person  was convicted after three  strikes and                                                               
had  his/her  driver's  license [permanently]  revoked,  but  the                                                               
person subsequently  was arrested for another  DUI [driving under                                                               
the influence]  offense, the  person would  be eligible  to apply                                                               
for a  limited license.   She then highlighted  the inconsistency                                                               
in current  law pertaining to DUIs.   She said that  a person who                                                               
stayed totally  clean for  10-15 years and  has not  been charged                                                               
with a DUI has no pathway  to obtain a driver's license; however,                                                               
a person  who had  a fourth  DUI who  adhered to  the therapeutic                                                               
court process would  be eligible to get  his/her driver's license                                                               
4:29:06 PM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE WOOL  asked for clarification  on how  current law                                                               
would affect  someone who  lost their license  but did  not drive                                                               
for ten years.                                                                                                                  
4:30:16 PM                                                                                                                    
GREG SMITH, Staff, Representative  Gabrielle LeDoux, Alaska State                                                               
Legislature,  stated  that HB  408  would  address someone  whose                                                               
license was  permanently revoked  due to 3  felony DUIs  within a                                                               
10-year  period.   If that  person committed  any driving-related                                                               
offense,  there would  not  be any  remedy  to reinstate  driving                                                               
privileges.  He was not sure about the insurance requirements.                                                                  
4:31:10 PM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE  WOOL  reiterated  the  purpose of  the  bill,  to                                                               
create a pathway  for reinstating a limited  driver's license for                                                               
those  who  are "clean"  for  ten  years, including  not  driving                                                               
without a license.                                                                                                              
MR.  SMITH  answered  yes;  that   was  his  understanding.    He                                                               
described the situation was being  encountered by someone who had                                                               
multiple DUI convictions  as a young person,  had his/her license                                                               
permanently  revoked,  but  who  has since  reformed  and  cannot                                                               
obtain a driver's license.                                                                                                      
4:33:18 PM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE TUCK  asked for clarification for  someone who was                                                               
conviction of a felony DUI, but  in Year 9 was subsequently cited                                                               
for  driving without  a license,  that the  person would  need to                                                               
wait 10 years  before he/she was eligible for  a limited driver's                                                               
license under the bill.                                                                                                         
MR. SMITH answered  yes; that the intent of the  bill is that the                                                               
person  must  have  10  years   of  no  driving-related  criminal                                                               
offenses before  they could petition  for restoration  of his/her                                                               
driver's license.                                                                                                               
4:34:11 PM                                                                                                                    
SEAN  HOOPER described  his experience  with losing  his driver's                                                               
license.    In 2002,  he  received  a  felony DUI,  went  through                                                               
treatment,  and  in  2003  was cited  for  driving  a  motorcycle                                                               
without  a  license.   It  has  been  nearly  15 years  since  he                                                               
straightened out  his life.  He  has tried several times  to have                                                               
his license  reinstated; however, since  he had an  offense after                                                               
his license was  revoked due to a felony DUI,  he is not eligible                                                               
for a limited license or license reinstatement of any type.                                                                     
REPRESENTATIVE  LEDOUX  thanked  him   for  testifying  since  it                                                               
identifies an issue that affects not only him, but many others.                                                                 
4:36:08 PM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE WOOL asked  whether his license was  revoked for a                                                               
third felony DUI.                                                                                                               
MR. HOOPER  answered that  it was his  third offense  right after                                                               
the law  was changed  to reflect three  DUI offenses  within five                                                               
years.  He said he had three DUIs in his early 20s.                                                                             
4:36:53 PM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE WOOL  asked whether he was  driving the motorcycle                                                               
without a valid license and if it triggered something else.                                                                     
MR.  HOOPER  said  his  license was  permanently  revoked  for  a                                                               
[third] felony  DUI.   The law  was written  that after  10 years                                                               
from supervised  probation a  person would  be eligible  to apply                                                               
for termination of revocation unless  the person had any criminal                                                               
offense.    His  criminal  offense was  driving  with  a  revoked                                                               
license in 2003, he said.                                                                                                       
4:37:55 PM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE  WOOL said  it  sounded as  though  he could  have                                                               
applied for the termination of  driver's license revocation if he                                                               
had not had a moving violation  on the motorcycle.  He was unsure                                                               
if Mr.  Hooper could have  applied for his license  under current                                                               
REPRESENTATIVE  LEDOUX  responded  that  Mr.  Hooper  could  have                                                               
applied  after ten  years if  he  had not  had a  driving-related                                                               
criminal offense.   Mr.  Hooper did have  one since  his criminal                                                               
offense  was  driving  without  license. She  said  he  has  been                                                               
"clean"  now  for  15  years;  however, he  can  never  obtain  a                                                               
CHAIR KREISS-TOMKINS remarked it was a bit like the SR-22 issue.                                                                
4:39:08 PM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE  WOOL recapped  that  essentially  the bill  would                                                               
allow  a person  to  apply for  termination  of driver's  license                                                               
revocation after ten years with a  clean record.  This bill would                                                               
reset the ten-year clock, he said.                                                                                              
4:39:59 PM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR KREISS-TOMKINS  recalled that  part of  the concept,  as he                                                               
understood  it  from  the   House  Judiciary  Standing  Committee                                                               
hearing was  that under current  law with justice reform  that SB
91 has  a pathway  to reinstate  his/her license.   He  asked for                                                               
clarification on the pathway.                                                                                                   
4:41:02 PM                                                                                                                    
NANCY  MEADE, General  Counsel, Administrative  Staff, Office  of                                                               
the   Administrative  Director,   Alaska   Court  System   (ACS),                                                               
responded  that prior  to passage  of SB  91, there  was not  any                                                               
pathway  for a  person  with  a felony  DUI  law, which  required                                                               
permanent  revocation to  get a  limited driver's  license.   She                                                               
explained that  misdemeanants could  obtain a limited  license to                                                               
allow the  person to drive  to work under  certain circumstances.                                                               
She  stated that  SB  91 added  a provision  that  would allow  a                                                               
person with a third felony  DUI conviction within 10 years, whose                                                               
license  has  been  permanently  revoked,  to  obtain  a  limited                                                               
license  if  the person  had  gone  through a  therapeutic  court                                                               
program and  met other  requirements such  as proof  of financial                                                               
responsibility  [SR-22], use  of the  ignition interlock  device,                                                               
and a few other things.                                                                                                         
MS. MEADE  explained that if  an individual lived in  a community                                                               
without a  therapeutic court,  the person  must demonstrate  to a                                                               
judge  that the  person had  completed a  treatment program  with                                                               
conditions  similar to  a therapeutic  court,  including that  it                                                               
spanned  18  months,  had  intensive   oversight,  and  had  some                                                               
residential component.   If the  person could  do that it  was an                                                               
alternative  to the  therapeutic court,  she said.   She  related                                                               
that a  person who  had driven under  the limited  felony license                                                               
for  three  years  could  apply  under  the  same  provision,  AS                                                               
28.35.030(o)  under   proposed  Section  2,  to   obtain  a  full                                                               
restoration.  She stated that  the provision was retroactive. For                                                               
example, if someone  went through therapeutic court  in 2004, the                                                               
person  meeting  the  requirements could  have  his/her  driver's                                                               
license reinstated.                                                                                                             
4:42:53 PM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE TUCK asked for clarification  whether a person who                                                               
used  the  therapeutic court  exception  and  obtained a  limited                                                               
license would need to use the ignition interlock system or not.                                                                 
MS.  MEADE explained  that  the ignition  interlock  device is  a                                                               
requirement for anyone conviction of a  DUI.  The law states that                                                               
the  person  would  permanently lose  his/her  driver's  license;                                                               
however, the  law also says  when and  if the person  ever drives                                                               
again, the  person must use  the ignition interlock device  for a                                                               
set period  of time.  She  related that language was  included in                                                               
every judgment.   She  acknowledged that after  three years  of a                                                               
limited  license the  person can  have  his/her driver's  license                                                               
restored.  She  referred to language on page 1,  starting at line                                                               
13.   She  explained  that proposed  AS  28.35.030(o) provides  a                                                               
different method for those who  do not go through the therapeutic                                                               
court  process  to obtain  a  full  driver's license  restoration                                                               
after 10  years of a clean  driving record despite the  fact that                                                               
the revocation was permanent.                                                                                                   
4:44:12 PM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE  TUCK related  a scenario  in which  a friend  got                                                               
three DUIs early  on and only recently after 15  years or longer,                                                               
with passage of  SB 91 was able to obtain  a driver's license but                                                               
uses  an  ignition  interlock  device.    He  also  went  through                                                               
therapeutic  court, he  said.   He asked  for clarification  that                                                               
with passage of HB 408, if  his friend had no prior violations in                                                               
10 years that  he could apply for a full  driver's license, which                                                               
would remove  the requirement for  the ignition  interlock device                                                               
and he would have the same privileges as any other driver.                                                                      
MS. MEADE  answered yes; but  there would  be a better  avenue to                                                               
get  the full  driver's  license, which  would  be after  driving                                                               
under  a limited  license  for three  years  without any  driving                                                               
related problems  could get  his license restored.   She  said it                                                               
would be more advantageous to use that route.                                                                                   
4:45:48 PM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE BIRCH  said he  liked [the  bill] and  believed in                                                               
redemption.   He expressed an  interest in statistics  on drivers                                                               
whose  license was  reinstated after  ten years  who subsequently                                                               
MS. MEADE  stated that [AS  28.35.030(o)(1)&(2) went  into effect                                                               
in  2002, which  relates  to restoration  of  a revoked  driver's                                                               
license  after  10 years  with  no  convictions of  any  driving-                                                               
related criminal  offenses.  Thus,  the first people  eligible to                                                               
apply under this  statute would have been in 2012.   She deferred                                                               
to  the DMV  to  provide  figures on  the  number  of people  who                                                               
applied   and  how   many  were   granted.     She  agreed   with                                                               
Representative   Wool's  assessment   that  many   drivers  whose                                                               
licenses were revoked continued  to drive with suspended licenses                                                               
and therefore disqualified themselves.                                                                                          
4:47:35 PM                                                                                                                    
MARLA THOMSON,  Director, Division of Motor  Vehicles, Department                                                               
of  Administration  (DOA),  was  unsure but  offered  to  provide                                                               
information to the committee.                                                                                                   
4:47:59 PM                                                                                                                    
MR. SMITH said he found  information showing that revocation of a                                                               
license was a  mechanism to reduce recidivism, but  what was less                                                               
conclusive  was the  optimal length  of  a revocation.   In  some                                                               
cases, long revocation periods taught  people that it was okay to                                                               
drive without  a license  when they  discovered they  could drive                                                               
and not be caught.                                                                                                              
REPRESENTATIVE  BIRCH said  that  ultimately it  is about  public                                                               
safety, so he was interested in the recidivism rates.                                                                           
4:48:50 PM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE  LEDOUX asked  whether  someone  like Mr.  Hooper,                                                               
whose  DUIs  were 15  years  ago,  would  be eligible  to  attend                                                               
therapeutic court.                                                                                                              
MS.  THOMSON   answered  no;  that   therapeutic  court   was  an                                                               
alternative  option to  deal with  a DUI  charge; therefore,  the                                                               
case must be  active.  The courts do not  provide social services                                                               
to  people who  do not  have an  active case.   If  a person  was                                                               
arrested  and  came  before  the  court,  the  therapeutic  court                                                               
provides an alternative route to the traditional court.                                                                         
4:49:47 PM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE  LEDOUX  related  her understanding  that  if  Mr.                                                               
Hooper  got an  additional DUI  and was  referred to  therapeutic                                                               
court, he  could then  apply for a  limited license.   Obviously,                                                               
Mr. Hooper would  not want to get  a DUI, but in  keeping on "the                                                               
straight and narrow path" places him  in a worse position than if                                                               
he got a subsequent DUI.                                                                                                        
MS. MEADE answered that was  literally true; however, therapeutic                                                               
court  is  an intensive  18-month  program  with social  workers,                                                               
probation officers,  and seeing the  judge every few days  at the                                                               
beginning  and tapering  off to  a weekly  visit.   Everyone must                                                               
agree  that  the  person  is an  appropriate  candidate  for  the                                                               
therapeutic court  route; for example,  they must agree  that the                                                               
person was  capable of  rehabilitation, she said.   She  said she                                                               
did  not  wish to  indicate  that  anyone  could go  through  the                                                               
therapeutic court because it is a difficult process.                                                                            
4:51:06 PM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE  LEDOUX  said  she understood  this;  however,  it                                                               
seemed  unfair  that someone  could  go  through the  therapeutic                                                               
court  route  to  get his/her  driver's  license  back.  However,                                                               
someone  without a  DUI after  15 years  could never  get his/her                                                               
license privileges restored.                                                                                                    
MS. MEADE answered that this  is what the law currently provides.                                                               
She offered  her view of what  happened in SB 91;  that there was                                                               
not a  way to  provide a  limited license.   The  ten-year period                                                               
without  any  DUIs  does  not  help  anyone  who  drives  with  a                                                               
suspended license, which many people  in that situation choose to                                                               
do at some point.  She further  stated that under SB 91, the view                                                               
was taken  to make it  available to  some people, but  still have                                                               
some  assurance that  this person  will not  recidivate and  show                                                               
some signs of rehabilitation.   She acknowledged that therapeutic                                                               
court was one concrete indicator.                                                                                               
4:52:20 PM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR KREISS-TOMKINS asked Ms. Meade  to describe the therapeutic                                                               
retroactivity associated  with the  therapeutic court  pathway to                                                               
restore a person's driver's license.                                                                                            
MS. MEADE  responded that SB  91 offered  a route for  those with                                                               
offenses before  the effective date of  SB 91; for example,  if a                                                               
person had a felony DUI in  2009, had not been driving since that                                                               
date and went  through therapeutic court, the  person could still                                                               
apply to DMV for a limited  driver's license.  It was intended to                                                               
address  parties   who  needed  some  avenue   to  restore  their                                                               
licenses.  Therapeutic  court was one way to show  the person was                                                               
somewhat rehabilitated, she said.                                                                                               
4:53:35 PM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE WOOL  related his understanding that  prior to the                                                               
passage  of SB  91 someone  with a  felony DUI  who lost  his/her                                                               
license permanently and  had no violations within  10 years could                                                               
apply to get their driver's license restored.                                                                                   
MS. MEADE answered yes.                                                                                                         
4:54:05 PM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE WOOL  suggested that having some  option to obtain                                                               
a legal driver's  license was good since the  penalty for someone                                                               
whose license was  suspended and continued to drive  would not be                                                               
a deterrent.  He asked whether  10 years would be the appropriate                                                               
amount of  time.  He was  unsure of the penalty  for driving with                                                               
license suspended [DWLS]  and whether people would  get jail time                                                               
for the offense.                                                                                                                
MS.  MEADE  responded that  the  DWLS  was  a common  charge  and                                                               
conviction.  She  reported that approximately 1,800  per year are                                                               
convicted of  DWLS.  She stated  that SB 91 separated  the crime.                                                               
If a person whose license was  suspended was caught driving for a                                                               
reason other  than DUI or  refusal, the penalty is  an infraction                                                               
with  a  $300  fine.    However,  if  the  driver's  license  was                                                               
suspended due  to a  DUI, the  penalty is  a Class  A misdemeanor                                                               
under SB 91.   The statute spells  out the penalty as  10 days in                                                               
jail with 10  days suspended and the second  offense would result                                                               
in 10 days in jail.                                                                                                             
4:56:29 PM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR KREISS-TOMKINS asked  whether the DMV has  taken a position                                                               
on HB 408.                                                                                                                      
MS. THOMSON stated  that the DMV has not yet  taken a position on                                                               
the bill.                                                                                                                       
4:57:28 PM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE  TUCK remarked  that he  was glad  to reform  some                                                               
things,  including the  SR-22 remedy.   He  viewed HB  408 as  an                                                               
amendment  rather than  a bill  and it  is a  necessary fix  that                                                               
needs to happen.                                                                                                                
4:58:02 PM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR KREISS-TOMKINS announced that HB 408 would be held over.                                                                  
[HB 408 was held over.]                                                                                                         

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
HB408 Sponsor Statement 4.13.18.pdf HSTA 4/26/2018 3:15:00 PM
HSTA 5/1/2018 3:15:00 PM
HB 408
HB408 Sectional Analysis 4.13.18.pdf HSTA 4/26/2018 3:15:00 PM
HSTA 5/1/2018 3:15:00 PM
HB 408
HB408 ver A 4.13.18.PDF HSTA 4/26/2018 3:15:00 PM
HSTA 5/1/2018 3:15:00 PM
HB 408
HB408 Fiscal Note DOA 4.25.18.pdf HSTA 4/26/2018 3:15:00 PM
HSTA 5/1/2018 3:15:00 PM
HB 408
Division of Election Report 4.25.18.pdf HSTA 4/26/2018 3:15:00 PM