Legislature(1993 - 1994)
03/28/1994 03:36 PM RES
* first hearing in first committee of referral
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
SENATOR MILLER announced SB 310 (STATE/PRIVATE/MUNI TIMBER OPERATION/SALE) to be up for consideration and announced a recess for a couple of minutes. SENATOR FRANK moved to adopt the proposed CS, Luckhaupt version U 3/18/94, to SB 310. There were no objections and it was so ordered. SENATOR FRANK moved to adopt amendment 1. RICK SOLIE, Legislative Aide for Senator Frank, explained that amendment 1 would amend the section for small timber sales not in the 5 year plan to be noticed sales under AS 38.05.945 (b) which would allow the public 30 days notice. SENATOR MILLER said there were no objections and amendment 1 passed. Number 85 SENATOR FRANK moved to adopt amendment 2, Luckhaupt U2. RICK SOLIE explained that this amendment would more clearly follow Senator Frank's intent with a comment period of not less than 30 days and not more than 60. TOM BOUTIN, Director, Division of Forestry, said there was no problem with these amendments and that the public process was very important. SENATOR MILLER announced there were no objections and amendment 2 was adopted. SENATOR FRANK moved to adopt amendment 3, Luckhaupt U3. RICK SOLIE said this amendment provides for a renewal for an FMA that would not lock the state into an extension. SENATOR MILLER said there were no objections to amendment 3 and it was adopted. Number 136 SENATOR FRANK moved to adopt amendment 4, Luckhaupt U4. MR. SOLIE said amendment 4 would put some bonding provisions in the bill that the department already practices requiring it of FMAs. MR. BOUTIN said these were already a feature of their ongoing contracts. SENATOR MILLER noted there were no objections and amendment 4 was adopted. SENATOR FRANK moved to adopt amendment 5, Luckhaupt U5. MR. SOLIE said amendment 5 inserts the definition of sustained yield that is in Title 38, not the one in Title 41. MR. BOUTIN said this definition is a little more comprehensive and is the one the Division of Forestry has to follow anyway on state land. SENATOR PEARCE asked what the difference was. SENATOR FRANK explained under Title 41 if this were a universe of forest, you could cut at a faster rate. It there was a 100 year regeneration cycle, you could cut more than 1/100 per year if it made sense. Under even flow you are more restricted to doing it evenly over the regeneration cycles. MR. BOUTIN explained that the underlying fear of this amendment is if the state had timber on, for example, 100 year rotation, and put all of that timber under a 20 year contract, using the Title 41 definition, the state could log the entire 100 years of timber in the first 20 years and then be out of timber for 80 years. SENATOR PEARCE asked if even flow would be applied to all state forests or to each sale. MR. BOUTIN said the state doesn't have in law a unit concept. It does calculate the annual allowable cut for the Tanana Valley State Forest and then for other forests. SENATOR MILLER noted there were no further objections to amendment 5 and it was adopted. SENATOR ZHAROFF said under section 6 what did "managing a state forest the Commissioner shall maintain growth at a high level of productivity" mean. MR. BOUTIN explained that the Division of Forestry does now remedy forest insect epidemics. It does now replant after fires to the extent that it can, even though it is not required by law. They do use precommercial thinning and other forestry methods to maintain a high level of productivity. He used the Rosie Creek burn as an example. SENATOR ZHAROFF asked how he would do that under this bill without having an increased budget. MR. BOUTIN said one resource that has drawn a lot of attention in respect to the FMAs is the 60 million feet allowable cut of low value hardwood in the interior that isn't being used now. A lot of it is dying back and rotting, so bringing this timber into forestation would increase the level of productivity geometrically and without any cost. That timber has a positive market value if there is an industry built to use it. SENATOR FRANK moved to pass CSSB 310(RES) from committee with individual recommendations. SENATOR ZHAROFF objected. He said we just went through a major revision with the Forest Practices Act, and a number of people put a lot of effort into that. This is a move around that Act and it is causing a great deal of concern. SENATORS MILLER, LEMAN, FRANK, and PEARCE, voted yes; SENATOR ZHAROFF voted no and CSSB 310(RES) passed from committee.