Legislature(2003 - 2004)

04/08/2003 02:05 PM Senate L&C

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
            SB  95-72-HOUR NOTICE OF TEACHER STRIKE                                                                         
CHAIR CON BUNDE called the Senate Labor and Commerce Standing                                                                 
Committee meeting to order at 2:05 p.m. All members were                                                                        
present. He announced SB 95 to be up for consideration.                                                                         
MS. JACQUELINE TUPOU,  staff to Senator Green, sponsor  of SB 95,                                                               
was present to answer questions.                                                                                                
SENATOR DAVIS offered Amendment 1.                                                                                              
CHAIR BUNDE objected for the purpose of discussion.                                                                             
SENATOR  DAVIS  told members  Amendment  1  was prepared  by  the                                                               
National Education Association of Alaska (NEAA).                                                                                
MS.   TUPOU  commented   that  she   received  an   opinion  from                                                               
legislative counsel  regarding problems  with the wording  in the                                                               
CHAIR BUNDE  noted that was aware  of a problem defining  a "lock                                                               
out." He said while the  committee was waiting for clarification,                                                               
Superintendent of  Kodiak Island  Borough School  District, Betty                                                               
Walters, wanted to comment.                                                                                                     
MS.   BETTY  WALTERS,   Superintendent,   Kodiak  Island   School                                                               
District,  said   the  Kodiak  District  is   involved  in  labor                                                               
relations  right now  and is  hoping for  a settlement.  However,                                                               
this  legislation would  help  the district  if  it goes  through                                                               
mediation  and  doesn't  come  up with  an  agreement.  It  would                                                               
provide  72-hours notice  to parents  and  community members  who                                                               
provide  child  care and  school  administrators  to prepare  for                                                               
school without "those valued certificated staff members."                                                                       
CHAIR BUNDE asked if  she had seen a copy of  Amendment 1 and she                                                               
indicated she hadn't.  He said he would get her  a copy and would                                                               
look forward to her comments.                                                                                                   
MR.  MARK   TORGERSON,  Department  of  Labor,   was  present  on                                                               
teleconference to answer questions.                                                                                             
SENATOR FRENCH  noted that  Amendment 1  said [a  district] could                                                               
not begin unilateral action against  its employees, including but                                                               
not limited to a lock out.                                                                                                      
SENATOR SEEKINS said he had never  heard of a lock out before and                                                               
asked if there has been one.                                                                                                    
CHAIR BUNDE  replied that  there has  not, nor  has there  been a                                                               
precipitous  strike  by teachers  for  which  the 72-hour  notice                                                               
would have been needed.                                                                                                         
SENATOR STEVENS said  he was trying to make sense  of Amendment 1                                                               
because the  whole purpose of the  bill seems to be  child safety                                                               
and he doesn't see how a lockout would be a safety issue.                                                                       
SENATOR DAVIS said she only  offered the amendment because it was                                                               
before  them and  hadn't been  discussed.  She did  not hear  any                                                               
approval  for  it  and  wasn't  prepared to  defend  it,  so  she                                                               
withdrew her motion.                                                                                                            
SENATOR SEEKINS  moved to pass  SB 95, Version A,  from committee                                                               
with individual recommendations and its zero fiscal note.                                                                       
A roll  call vote  was taken.  SENATORS STEVENS,  DAVIS, SEEKINS,                                                               
FRENCH and BUNDE voted yea, therefore it moved from committee.                                                                  

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