HJR 15: Relating to collaboration with the Yukon and the Northwest Territories through the Pacific NorthWest Economic Region and its Arctic Caucus to address common issues.
00 HOUSE JOINT RESOLUTION NO. 15 01 Relating to collaboration with the Yukon and the Northwest Territories through the 02 Pacific NorthWest Economic Region and its Arctic Caucus to address common issues. 03 BE IT RESOLVED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF ALASKA: 04 WHEREAS the Pacific NorthWest Economic Region was formed in 1991 as a forum 05 for collaborative public and private sector planning among the states of Alaska, Montana, 06 Washington, Oregon, and Idaho, the Canadian provinces and territories of the Northwest 07 Territories, Yukon, British Columbia, Alberta, and Saskatchewan, and the national capitals of 08 Washington, D.C., and Ottawa, Canada; and 09 WHEREAS the Arctic Caucus of the Pacific NorthWest Economic Region was 10 formed in November 2009 as an informal group of legislators, government officials, business 11 leaders, and leaders of nonprofit organizations committed to the responsible development of 12 North America's Arctic regions; and 13 WHEREAS the purpose of the Arctic Caucus is to provide a forum within the Pacific 14 NorthWest Economic Region for the Arctic jurisdictions of Alaska, the Yukon, and the 15 Northwest Territories to share information, discuss issues of mutual concern, and identify 16 areas for collaboration, including working with other jurisdictions and providing Arctic-
01 related input to the working groups of the Pacific NorthWest Economic Region; and 02 WHEREAS, on December 1 - 3, 2010, the Arctic Caucus met in Barrow, Alaska, to 03 discuss the federal Arctic policies of the United States and Canada, the Arctic transportation 04 and communication infrastructure needs of the Arctic Caucus member regions, and the 05 priorities and action of the Arctic Caucus; and 06 WHEREAS the Alaska Northern Waters Task Force attended the 2010 meeting of the 07 Arctic Caucus in Barrow, and future cooperative action between the Alaska Northern Waters 08 Task Force and the Arctic Caucus was outlined; and 09 WHEREAS the 21st Annual Summit of the Pacific NorthWest Economic Region will 10 be held July 19 - 22, 2011, in Portland, Oregon, and will provide a forum for continued Arctic 11 Caucus collaboration; and 12 WHEREAS Alaska, the Yukon, and the Northwest Territories, the three northern 13 regions of the Pacific NorthWest Economic Region, have problems in common, including a 14 need for better cold climate housing; a high rate of suicide; a high rate of domestic violence; a 15 high rate of substance abuse; an economic reliance on resource-extraction industries and a 16 corresponding need for economic diversification; remote and inaccessible communities that 17 face high costs for fuel and commodities; and an urgent need for investment in transportation 18 and communication infrastructure; and 19 WHEREAS there is much to be gained by Alaska, the Yukon, and the Northwest 20 Territories more closely sharing strategies to solve common problems and working together to 21 solve those problems; and 22 WHEREAS some of the issues that the Arctic Caucus might address include 23 increasing cooperation on scientific research and vessel tracking; exploring strategies to 24 address and mitigate tension between local users and industry; identifying economic 25 development opportunities through tourism, infrastructure development, and regional 26 partnerships; exploring increased cooperation in emergency and disaster preparedness; and 27 increasing coordination of search and rescue efforts; 28 BE IT RESOLVED that the Alaska State Legislature will collaborate with the 29 legislative assemblies of the Yukon and the Northwest Territories through the Pacific 30 NorthWest Economic Region and its Arctic Caucus to facilitate communication and 31 cooperation among the Arctic Caucus member regions and, as a result, to address more
01 effectively problems common to those regions; and be it 02 FURTHER RESOLVED that the Alaska State Legislature will work with the 03 legislative assemblies of the Yukon and the Northwest Territories through the Pacific 04 NorthWest Economic Region and the Arctic Caucus to promote a synchronized message 05 detailing the common needs of the Arctic Caucus member regions to their respective federal 06 governments and emphasizing that coordinated United States and Canadian federal policies 07 are vital to the welfare of Alaska, the Yukon, and the Northwest Territories; and be it 08 FURTHER RESOLVED that the Alaska State Legislature invites the governments of 09 the Yukon and the Northwest Territories to join Alaska in an enduring alliance to pursue the 10 common goals of their regions. 11 COPIES of this resolution shall be sent to the Honorable Stephen Harper, Prime 12 Minister of Canada; the Honorable John Morris Duncan, Canadian Minister of Indian Affairs 13 and Northern Development; the Honorable Jim Kenyon, Member of the Legislative Assembly 14 of the Yukon; the Honorable Bob McLeod, Member of the Legislative Assembly of the 15 Northwest Territories; the Honorable Denis Stevens, Consul General of the Consulate General 16 of Canada in Seattle, Washington; the Honorable Barack Obama, President of the United 17 States; the Honorable Hillary Rodham Clinton, United States Secretary of State; the 18 Honorable Robert M. Gates, United States Secretary of Defense; the Honorable Ken Salazar, 19 United States Secretary of the Interior; the Honorable Sean Parnell, Governor of Alaska; the 20 Honorable Mead Treadwell, Lieutenant Governor of Alaska; and the Honorable Lisa 21 Murkowski and the Honorable Mark Begich, U.S. Senators, and the Honorable Don Young, 22 U.S. Representative, members of the Alaska delegation in Congress.