Legislature(2017 - 2018)BELTZ 105 (TSBldg)
03/16/2017 03:30 PM COMMUNITY & REGIONAL AFFAIRS
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HB 8-ENFORCEMENT OF FOREIGN PROTECTIVE ORDERS 3:39:12 PM CHAIR BISHOP announced consideration of HB 8. 3:39:23 PM TIM CLARK, staff to Representative Bryce Edgmon, sponsor of HB 8, Alaska State Legislature, Juneau, Alaska, introduced HB 8 for the sponsor. He said that HB 8 reconciles state statutes that are now in conflict with federal law under the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), which makes sure that a protection order issued in another jurisdiction (meaning another state or tribal court) is treated no differently than a protective order issued by an Alaska State court. Under existing statute, state law enforcement is only compelled to enforce a protection order from another jurisdiction if it has been first filed with a clerk of an Alaskan court. MR. CLARK said HB 8 ensures that a protection order from another state or a tribal court would be given full faith and credit with no requirement that it first be registered with the state. This efficiency is important to some peoples' immediate safety. The state is already enforcing existing provisions in the superseding federal law, but it's important to clean up state statute to eliminate possible complications in prosecutions and any risk of lawsuits for the state. The bill carries a zero fiscal note. CHAIR BISHOP asked for an example of what a "potential conflict" could be if the state isn't in compliance with federal law. MARY LUNDQUIST, Assistant Attorney General, Department of Law (DOL), Civic Division, Opinions, Appeals, and Ethics Section, Fairbanks, Alaska, said she didn't have any specific examples of ongoing conflicts, because the state complies with VAWA now. However, the state law is out of sync with federal law, because it requires registration of tribal protection orders, and this bill would eliminate that inconsistency. By doing that it would also eliminate the possibility for a prosecutor to say the state wasn't complying with state law by not arresting a person for violating a protection order in the future, even though the federal law would pre-empt the state law requirements. CHAIR BISHOP opened public comment. 3:43:44 PM CAITLYN KELLY, representing herself, Juneau, Alaska, supported HB 8. She said her older sister has a long-term, criminal protective order against someone in California. When she came back up to Alaska, this person followed her. He came to the house where she was staying and attacked her. The police were called; he was found and arrested, but he wasn't charged with violating a protective order, because under state law it has to be registered. Her sister didn't know that, because the protective order says that it's enforceable in all 50 states. The fact that a protective order has to be registered isn't a well-known procedure or information that is readily available to the public. SENATOR GARDNER thanked Ms. Kelly for testifying. MS. KELLY reiterated that she felt it "very crucial" to pass this bill, because this person has made life-threatening comments against her sister. That is why the protective order is there. 3:46:14 PM CHAIR BISHOP, finding no further comments, closed public testimony and held HB 8 for a later hearing.