Legislature(2015 - 2016)

2016-11-07 Senate Journal

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2016-11-07                     Senate Journal                      Page 3124
SB 125                                                                                                                        
Message dated July 20 was received stating:                                                                                     
Dear President Meyer:                                                                                                           
Under the authority vested in me by Article II, Section 15,                                                                     
Constitution of the State of Alaska, I have vetoed the following bill:                                                          
         HOUSE CS FOR CS FOR SENATE BILL                                                                                        
         NO. 125(RES) "An Act relating to the board of                                                                          
         directors of the Alaska Gasline Development                                                                            
         Corporation; adding legislators as nonvoting                                                                           
         members of the board of directors of the Alaska                                                                        
         Gasline Development Corporation; and providing for                                                                     
         an effective date."                                                                                                    
Although I understand legislators' desire to gain more understanding                                                            
of the decisions of the Alaska Gasline Development Corporation                                                                  
(AGDC) and its important work, the approach taken in this bill is not                                                           
necessary to achieve that goal. Further, the Alaska Constitution,                                                               
Article 2, Section 5, prohibits legislators from holding "any other                                                             
office or position of profit under the United States or the State."                                                             
According to the formal Attorney General Opinion issued on July 19,                                                             

2016-11-07                     Senate Journal                      Page 3125
2016, having legislators sit on a public corporation board, like AGDC,                                                          
would violate the dual-office holding prohibition in the Alaska                                                                 
Constitution, even if the legislators are non-voting members. Despite                                                           
the lack of a vote, the legislators would still be influencing the                                                              
decisions made by the board and be privy to confidential information                                                            
held by the corporation, while also having the legislative power to                                                             
change the corporation's statutes and determine its funding.                                                                    
In order to preserve the separation of powers and uphold the Alaska                                                             
Constitution, I have vetoed HCS CSSB 125(RES). However, I do                                                                    
believe it is important for the Legislature and the public to have as                                                           
much information and insight as possible into the actions and                                                                   
decisions of AGDC. I would encourage legislators and the public to                                                              
attend AGDC board meetings. I would also encourage AGDC to                                                                      
continue to provide information to the Legislature as it becomes                                                                
available. As Governor, I will continue a practice I began last session                                                         
to hold regular meetings with the House and Senate Resource chairs                                                              
and co-chairs, as well legislative leadership and minority leadership, to                                                       
keep them up to speed on gasline issues. Building a gasline will take a                                                         
team effort, and AGDC must earn the confidence and trust of the                                                                 
Legislature and the public to ultimately make the gasline a reality.                                                            
For these reasons, I have vetoed HCS CSSB 125(RES).                                                                             
Bill Walker