Legislature(2011 - 2012)FAHRENKAMP 203

02/23/2012 09:00 AM STATE AFFAIRS


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* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
*+ SB 178 ALASKA OPERATING ENDOWMENT FUND TELECONFERENCED
Heard & Held
*+ SCR 22 ALASKA ARCTIC POLICY COMMISSION TELECONFERENCED
Heard & Held
*+ SCR 19 PROCLAIMING UNITED STATES MARSHALS DAY TELECONFERENCED
Moved SCR 19 Out of Committee
Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled
             SCR 22-ALASKA ARCTIC POLICY COMMISSION                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
9:27:12 AM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR  WIELECHOWSKI  announced  the consideration  of  SCR  22,                                                               
which would establish an Alaska  Arctic Policy Commission to help                                                               
create a state  Arctic policy and address the  many issues raised                                                               
by a changing Arctic landscape.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
WESTON EILER, staff, Senator Burt Stedman, presented SCR 22 on                                                                  
behalf of the Senate Finance Committee. He read from the                                                                        
following sponsor statement:                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
     Senate Concurrent Resolution (SCR) 22 establishes the                                                                      
     Alaska Arctic Policy Commission within the legislative                                                                     
     branch. Over the course of two years, the 16-member                                                                        
     commission will engage state government, communities,                                                                      
     and stakeholders on northern waters and Arctic issues.                                                                     
     SCR 22 continues the legislature's work to establish                                                                       
     an official Arctic policy for the State of Alaska, and                                                                     
     address a diverse set of issues facing the state with                                                                      
     changes in the Arctic.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     In January of 2012, the Alaskan Northern Waters Task                                                                       
     Force (ANWTF) presented its findings to the                                                                                
     legislature. The Task Force identified opportunities                                                                       
     and challenges in a changing Arctic, and made                                                                              
     recommendations in six policy areas: Governance, Oil                                                                       
     and Gas Development, Marine Transportation, Fisheries,                                                                     
     Infrastructure, and Research. The ANWTF Report is the                                                                      
     most detailed assessment of Arctic issues by the                                                                           
     legislature to date, but more work is needed to fully                                                                      
     assess the multitude of issues brought forward by the                                                                      
     Task Force and craft an official Arctic policy for                                                                         
     Alaska. Most Northern nations and territories already                                                                      
     have established Arctic policies to help address                                                                           
     changes and development in the Arctic region.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
     Alaska has an enormous stake in the Arctic and needs                                                                       
     to adopt a strategic and targeted Arctic policy.                                                                           
     Advancing Alaska's interest in the Arctic will require                                                                     
     sustained efforts by state government. This resolution                                                                     
     is a targeted next step to continue the legislature's                                                                      
     work in this area and help position Alaska at the                                                                          
     forefront of our nation's Arctic policy.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR GIESSEL thought  the bill was a great  idea. She referred                                                               
to page 3,  line 14, item (G), and asked  what "an association of                                                               
a local government" means.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
MR.  EILER  explained that  wording  was  included to  allow  for                                                               
flexibility  for  unorganized  boroughs.  All  members  would  be                                                               
appointed  jointly by  the Speaker  of the  House and  the Senate                                                               
President.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR GIESSEL questioned line 17,  (I), the wording "one member                                                               
representing an international Arctic organization."                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
MR. EILER replied that the  bill would allow for a representative                                                               
from one of the international stakeholder groups.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR WIELECHOWSKI set SCR 22 aside.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                

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