Legislature(2005 - 2006)BUTROVICH 205

01/26/2005 03:30 PM RESOURCES

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* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
Moved SJR 2 Out of Committee
Moved CSSB 32(RES) Out of Committee
Heard & Held
         SB  69-APPROP: GRANT TO ARCTIC POWER FOR ANWR                                                                      
CHAIR WAGONER announced SB 69 to be up for consideration.                                                                       
MS. MARY  JACKSON,  staff to Senator  Wagoner,  sponsor of  SB 69,                                                              
said that the  House has a similar  bill, HB 101, but  the funding                                                              
was for $1.3 million.  Funding in SB 69 is for  $1.2 million; $1.1                                                              
million  of which  goes to  Arctic Power.  The remaining  $100,000                                                              
goes to the Native Village of Kaktovik.                                                                                         
MS. JACKSON  explained that Arctic  Power is a private  non-profit                                                              
entity  that has been  coordinating  the effort  on ANWR for  many                                                              
years.  Historically, the  funding  for promoting  the opening  of                                                              
ANWR is in the supplemental budget.                                                                                             
4:45:36 PM                                                                                                                    
MR.  MIKE NAVARRE,  Executive Board  member,  Arctic Power,  urged                                                              
quick  passage of SB  69. He  said the  opposition has  tremendous                                                              
resources that  it applies  in many ways,  like taking  things out                                                              
of context  and leaving  out important  information. Arctic  Power                                                              
has done  an extraordinary  job of  putting educational  materials                                                              
together  to help  educate  Congress, editorial  boards,  interest                                                              
groups and the general public.                                                                                                  
4:46:56 PM                                                                                                                    
MR. NAVARRE  said Arctic Power would  like to coordinate  with the                                                              
congressional  delegation  since  they  are  the  experts  on  the                                                              
ground  regarding the  efforts to  be made.  He said  this can  be                                                              
considered a long-term  investment for the state and  that some of                                                              
the members  of Arctic  Power have  dropped out  for a  variety of                                                              
reasons, but not because they don't support it.                                                                                 
4:48:12 PM                                                                                                                    
He gave  examples of the misinformation  that has  been propagated                                                              
- like the six months supply of gas.                                                                                            
     It's ludicrous,  but it continues to be used.  In all of                                                                   
     their testimony,  there is a failure to  acknowledge the                                                                   
     Inupiat's  from  the  village   of  Kaktovik  that  live                                                                   
     within  the Refuge.  They talk  about  the Gwichens  who                                                                   
     live outside  the Refuge, but  not about the  indigenous                                                                   
     people  who live within  the Refuge....  I believe  that                                                                   
     we do  oil development in  Alaska better than  any place                                                                   
     in the  world and we need  to carry that message  to the                                                                   
     United States and to Congress....                                                                                          
He noted  that regulations  would be passed  this year  that would                                                              
need to  be bird-dogged  over the  course; so,  the lapse  date is                                                              
4:49:59 PM                                                                                                                    
MR. JOE  MATHIS, Montana  Creek Campground  in Anchorage,  said he                                                              
is on the Arctic  Power Board. He has personally  traveled to ANWR                                                              
and agreed  totally with Mr. Navarre's  comments that SJR  2 needs                                                              
to have  a speedy  passage. He  said that  the Legislature  should                                                              
look at its investment  in Arctic Power as part  of Alaska's long-                                                              
term fiscal plan.                                                                                                               
4:51:49 PM                                                                                                                    
MR. MATT FAGNANI,  NANA Development Corporation, said  he has been                                                              
an active member  of the Arctic Power Board of  Directors since it                                                              
began. Each  year it gets  closer to meeting  the goal  of opening                                                              
the Coastal Plain  to responsible oil and gas  exploration. On the                                                              
expected lease  sale, the  state could  earn $2 billion  according                                                              
to  a U.S.  Department  of Interior  forecast.  That represents  a                                                              
222%  return on  investment, which  would occur  within 22  months                                                              
after signing  of the  bill. He said  that Arctic Power's  webpage                                                              
is  receiving over  1  million hits  a month.  He  thought it  was                                                              
happening  because of  two constants  - one  is because  President                                                              
Bush continues  to make the opening  of ANWR part of  the solution                                                              
in addressing  the nation's decline  in oil. The second  is Arctic                                                              
Power educating Congress and the public at large.                                                                               
4:55:08 PM                                                                                                                    
MS.  DEBBIE MILLER,  testified again  noting that  all the  people                                                              
who have testified  in favor of  Arctic Power are on its  Board or                                                              
affiliated with  it. She is a  private citizen and  thinks funding                                                              
Arctic Power is  a misappropriation of state  money and reiterated                                                              
that  she   would  rather  see   alternative  sources   of  energy                                                              
4:57:54 PM                                                                                                                    
MR. FRAN  MAUER opposed  funding Arctic  Power. Many other  people                                                              
do  not  support Arctic  Power.  He  said  two  of the  major  oil                                                              
companies that  are active  on the North  Slope no longer  support                                                              
Arctic Power and  perhaps they know something that  the state does                                                              
not.  He  thought Arctic  Power  funds  would  be better  used  by                                                              
investing   them  in   alternative  energy   projects  like   wind                                                              
generators for remote villages.                                                                                                 
4:59:10 PM                                                                                                                    
MS. LUCI  BEACH, Executive  Director, Gwichen Steering  Committee,                                                              
also opposed  SB 69.   The  Gwichen Nation  has never opposed  all                                                              
oil  development,  just some.  Her  suggestions for  using  Arctic                                                              
Power   money  to   fund   other  worthwhile   programs   included                                                              
assistance  to senior  citizens  who  were adversely  effected  by                                                              
elimination    of   the   Longevity    Bonus   Program,    Village                                                              
Contamination  Cleanup Fund, funding  for Alaska Scholars  Program                                                              
and funding to the University to enhance distance education so                                                                  
remote site students can have better access.                                                                                    
5:02:07 PM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR WAGONER thanked her for her testimony and said that SB 69                                                                 
would not be passed out of committee today.                                                                                     

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