House to unveil its version of 2019 state budget next week
State Director Denny DeWitt reports from Juneau on the small-business agenda for the legislative week ending March 2
We are 46 days into the legislative session. For those betting on a 90 -day session, we are halfway there.
Last week, NFIB made its opposition to the appointment of union activist Chad Bolduc to an industry position on the Workers’ Compensation Board vociferously known far and wide. On February 28, Gov. Bill Walker withdrew the nomination.
NFIB also awaits the governor’s next appointment to the Worker’s Compensation Board from the First Judicial District, which is Southeast Alaska. Small-business owners interested in applying for it can send their resume to the governor. For information about the job, click here.
Workers’ Compensation Death Benefit
House Bill 38 passed the House Finance Committee. This is the bill by Rep. Andy Josephson that adds a worker’s compensation death benefit for a relative not dependent on the employee or the employee’s estate. NFIB continues its opposition and will make this a Key Vote. The Key Vote notice will be distributed to all House members before the floor vote.
State Income Tax
Senate Bill 130, by Sen. Kevin Meyer, moved from the State Affairs Committee to the Finance Committee. This measure would require a vote of the people prior to imposing a statewide income or sales tax. NFIB continues its support.
- House Bill 193, by Rep. Jason Grenn, would require emergency health insurance to cover out-of-network services with no copayment. NFIB opposes insurance mandates. It will have its first hearing in the Health & Social Services Committee on March 8.
- House Bill 264, by Rep. Andy Josephson, will be heard in the House Labor & Commerce Committee March 9. This is the bill that would require a $0.20 charge on disposable bags. NFIB opposes this bill because of the burdens it poses for retailers and the poor drafting and definitions in the bill.
- House Bill 358, by Rep. Ivy Spohnholz, would prohibit insurance policies that offer telehealth coverage from requiring a physician visit prior to covering telehealth. While this is almost a mandate, NFIB will remain watchful to ensure that it doesn’t change to mandating telehealth coverage. It will be heard in the Health & Social Services Committee March 8.
- Senate Bill 196, by Sen. Kevin Meyer, is a state spending cap. It will be heard in the Senate State Affairs Committee March 6. NFIB supports spending caps.
The House will send its version of the 2019 state budget to the floor next week, where NFIB will get a view of their notion of state spending and revenue sources for 2019.
Previous Reports, News Releases, Guest Editorials, Action Alerts
[Tile photo courtesy of The Alaska State Legislature’s Capitol Updates]