Representative Matt Claman's Alaska Matters
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Protecting Your Rights: Serving Sand Lake, Spenard, and Turnagain
April 28, 2017
In this issue:
• Budget Updates: The Senate Reviews
House Bill 111 & House Bill 115
• House Bill 222: Licensure of Manicurists
and Nail Technicians
• Summer Jobs
• Community Events

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

Today marks the 102nd day of the session. The House has passed its four-pillared responsible action plan to the Senate for consideration. As the House hears additional legislation, the budget remains our top priority and we’re committed to working together with the Senate.
 

Budget Update: The Senate Reviews House Bill 111 & House Bill 115

We’ve written about the four pillars of the House’s responsible action plan for Alaska. Earlier in session the House made responsible budget cuts in House Bill 57 and restructured the Permanent Fund in Senate Bill 26 while protecting a Dividend. Over the Easter weekend, we passed House Bill 111 updating the oil and tax credit system, and House Bill 115, the Education Funding Act.  The Senate is now reviewing all of the bills and considering changes to HB 111.

House Bill 111 restructures Alaska’s oil and gas tax credit system. The version of HB 111 that passed the House eliminated tax credits for North Slope production and limited companies to collecting credits only for the field where they earn the credits. The House kept refundable credits for “Middle Earth,” the area south of the Brooks Range and north of Southcentral Alaska. The bill also lowered the tax rate from 35% to 25%, but added a 15% bracketed supplemental tax that is triggered when oil prices reach $100 dollars or more. The House hardened the minimum tax rate at four percent, meaning that no tax credit can bring the tax rate below the minimum tax, with the exception of sunsetting small producer credits. 

The Senate Resources Committee has recommended a revised bill. This version removes the provisions that restructure the tax rate. It also eliminates refundable credits for production statewide, including in ‘Middle Earth,’ while allowing non-refundable credits for Doyon and Ahtna, Alaska Native corporations that operate in “Middle Earth”. Under the Senate’s plan, tax credits due through 2017 will be refundable only by appropriation, allowing the Legislature to know what credits are being refunded. The Senate’s proposed version maintained the hardened tax floor at four percent, but made exceptions for both sunsetting small producers and per barrel taxable credits. It also allows companies to use tax credits against any prior year’s outstanding taxes. HB 111 is now referred to the Senate Finance Committee, which will hear public testimony beginning at 9am Saturday morning.

House Bill 115, the Education Funding Act, passed the House over Easter weekend. The Senate Labor and Commerce Committee has been hearing the bill this week. When the Senate heard public testimony over 100 Alaskans testified with a majority favoring the bill.

Members of the House discuss proposed legislation on the House Floor on Monday.
Members of the House discuss proposed legislation on the House Floor on Monday.

House Bill 222: Licensure of Manicurists and Nail Technicians

Yesterday, the Alaska House of Representatives unanimously passed legislation introduced by my office that repeals Alaska statutes that disadvantage working Alaskan manicurists. House Bill 222, the Licensure of Manicurists/Nail Techs Act, removes unreasonable licensing requirements and allows existing manicurists to practice without taking a redundant 250 hours of coursework as part of their license renewal.

In 2015, the House passed legislation that was intended to improve the safety and health of nail salon patrons. Prior to the 2015 law, there were two types of manicurist licenses: a manicurist license, which required 12 hours of classroom training, and an advanced manicurist license, which required 250 hours of coursework. House Bill 131eliminated the 12 hour license and required all manicurists to take a written exam and complete a 250 hour course. Unfortunately, there were unintended consequences: existing manicurists seeking license renewal were also required to take a 250 hours course- even manicurists with 20 years of experience. Further, the courses are costly, only offered during the day, and only offered at three schools. Under the 2015 legislation, over 900 experienced manicurists would have been required to take expensive, redundant courses and miss several weeks of work.

HB 222 undoes the 2015 legislation. It removes the onerous renewal process and the unreasonable burden of redundant training courses for experienced manicurists. HB 222 returns manicurist licensing to its previous form, with two tiers of licenses. Our office was pleased to work on HB 222, because it keeps hard working Alaskans employed. The bill passed unanimously and now goes to the Senate for consideration.

Summer Jobs

Do you know someone looking for a summer job? The Anchorage Economic Development Corporation (AEDC) has created a summer jobs directory. It’s a free resource for job seekers and employers that features a variety of summer positions across Anchorage and Alaska. Visit AEDC’s website for more information.

Community Events

Mark your calendar for these upcoming events:

Community Councils

Sand Lake Community Council 
When: Monday, May 1st at 6:30 pm 
Where: Sand Lake Elementary School, School Library Room

Spenard Community Council 
When: Wednesday, May 3rd at 7:00 pm 
Where: Spenard Recreation Center

Turnagain Community Council 
When: Thursday, May 4th at 7:00 pm
Where:
 Lake Hood Elementary School

Community Roundtables – Anchorage Economic Development Corporation

AEDC is hosting a series of community and business roundtables as part of the Anchorage Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy. These discussions are meant to align the business community’s priorities with the public’s priorities so we can focus on economic goals that benefit everyone.  The meetings will be held in small group format with facilitators to help with the conversation. For more information, visit AEDC’s website.

Dates and times of Roundtable events.
Dates and times of Roundtable events.

National Prescription Drug Take Back Day

When: Saturday, April 29th from 10:00am to 2:00pm.
Where: Locations in the Municipality include the following:

  • Providence Medical Center - 3300 Providence Drive, Entrance #4  
  • ANTHC Healthy Communities Building - 3900 Ambassador Drive  
  • Fred Meyer - 7701 DeBarr Road  
  • Fred Meyer - 2300 Abbott Road  
  • Fred Meyer (Eagle River) - 13401 Old Glenn Highway 
  • Girdwood Clinic - 131 Lindblad Avenue  

Opioid abuse is at epidemic levels in the Alaska. The “Take-Back” initiative is intended to reduce prescription drug abuse and diversion. Collection centers are available to turn in your unused or expired prescription medication for safe disposal.

As always, please let us know if you have any question or concerns.

Sincerely,

signed: Matt Claman

    Rep. Matt Claman

    P.S. follow me on Facebook and Twitter

Contact Information

(907) 465-4919

Rep.Matt.Claman@akleg.gov

State Capitol Bldg. Rm 405
Juneau, Alaska 99801

www.repmattclaman.com

Contact the Governor

550 West 7th Avenue, Suite 1700
Anchorage, AK 99501
T (907) 269-7450 F (907) 269-7461
EMAIL: Governor Bill Walker

STATE of ALASKA
http://alaska.gov/

State Info (907) 269-5111

Serving the Anchorage Neighborhoods of
Sand Lake, Spenard, and Turnagain

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