Legislature(2017 - 2018)GRUENBERG 120

04/04/2017 10:00 AM FISHERIES

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Audio Topic
10:01:49 AM Start
10:02:23 AM HB128
10:14:46 AM Adjourn
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
Moved HB 128 Out of Committee
+ Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled TELECONFERENCED
                    ALASKA STATE LEGISLATURE                                                                                  
              HOUSE SPECIAL COMMITTEE ON FISHERIES                                                                            
                         April 4, 2017                                                                                          
                           10:01 a.m.                                                                                           
MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                               
Representative Louise Stutes, Chair                                                                                             
Representative Zach Fansler                                                                                                     
Representative Jonathan Kreiss-Tomkins                                                                                          
Representative Mike Chenault                                                                                                    
Representative Mark Neuman                                                                                                      
MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                                                                
Representative Geran Tarr                                                                                                       
Representative David Eastman                                                                                                    
COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                                                                            
HOUSE BILL NO. 128                                                                                                              
"An Act relating  to management of enhanced  stocks of shellfish;                                                               
authorizing   certain  nonprofit   organizations  to   engage  in                                                               
shellfish enhancement projects; relating  to application fees for                                                               
salmon hatchery permits; and providing for an effective date."                                                                  
     - MOVED HB 128 OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                            
PREVIOUS COMMITTEE ACTION                                                                                                     
BILL: HB 128                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE: SHELLFISH ENHANCE. PROJECTS; HATCHERIES                                                                            
SPONSOR(s): REPRESENTATIVE(s) ORTIZ                                                                                             
02/15/17       (H)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
02/15/17       (H)       FSH, FIN                                                                                               
03/07/17       (H)       FSH AT 10:00 AM GRUENBERG 120                                                                          
03/07/17       (H)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
03/07/17       (H)       MINUTE(FSH)                                                                                            
03/14/17       (H)       FSH AT 10:00 AM GRUENBERG 120                                                                          
03/14/17       (H)       -- MEETING CANCELED --                                                                                 
03/28/17       (H)       FSH AT 10:00 AM GRUENBERG 120                                                                          
03/28/17       (H)       Scheduled but Not Heard                                                                                
03/30/17       (H)       FSH AT 10:00 AM GRUENBERG 120                                                                          
03/30/17       (H)       -- MEETING CANCELED --                                                                                 
04/04/17       (H)       FSH AT 10:00 AM GRUENBERG 120                                                                          
WITNESS REGISTER                                                                                                              
REPRESENTATIVE DAN ORTIZ                                                                                                        
Alaska State Legislature                                                                                                        
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Presented HB 128, as prime sponsor.                                                                      
MARY HAKALA, Staff                                                                                                              
Representative Dan Ortiz                                                                                                        
Alaska State Legislature                                                                                                        
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:   Responded  to questions during  the hearing                                                             
on HB 128.                                                                                                                      
FORREST BOWERS, Deputy Director                                                                                                 
Commercial Fisheries Division                                                                                                   
Alaska Department of Fish & Game (ADF&G)                                                                                        
POSITION STATEMENT:   Responded  to questions during  the hearing                                                             
on HB 128.                                                                                                                      
ACTION NARRATIVE                                                                                                              
10:01:49 AM                                                                                                                   
CHAIR  LOUISE  STUTES  called  the  House  Special  Committee  on                                                             
Fisheries  meeting  to  order  at  10:01  a.m.    Representatives                                                               
Stutes, Chenault, Fansler,  & Neuman were present at  the call to                                                               
order.  Representative Kreiss-Tomkins  arrived as the meeting was                                                               
in progress.                                                                                                                    
         HB 128-SHELLFISH ENHANCE. PROJECTS; HATCHERIES                                                                     
10:02:23 AM                                                                                                                   
CHAIR STUTES announced  that the only order of  business would be                                                               
HOUSE BILL  NO. 128, "An  Act relating to management  of enhanced                                                               
stocks of shellfish;  authorizing certain nonprofit organizations                                                               
to  engage   in  shellfish  enhancement  projects;   relating  to                                                               
application fees  for salmon hatchery permits;  and providing for                                                               
an effective date."                                                                                                             
10:02:36 AM                                                                                                                   
REPRESENTATIVE DAN ORTIZ, Alaska State Legislature, reintroduced                                                                
HB 128 to the committee, paraphrasing from a prepared statement,                                                                
which read as follows [original punctuation provided]:                                                                          
     Thank  you for  hearing HB  128 dealing  with Shellfish                                                                    
     Enhancement Projects.                                                                                                      
     HB128  advances mariculture  opportunities in  Alaska -                                                                    
     through shellfish enhancement projects.                                                                                    
     Very briefly,  it allows non-profits to  apply for, and                                                                    
     pursue  enhancement or  restoration projects  involving                                                                    
     shellfish.   This may include  Red and blue  king crab,                                                                    
     sea cucumber, geoduck (gooey duck)  & razor clams, plus                                                                    
     other shell fish species -not yet on the radar.                                                                            
     HB  128  bill  holds  the Department  to  a  very  high                                                                    
     standard  in   their  process  of  issuing   permits  -                                                                    
     specifically  requiring  the  Commissioner  to  make  a                                                                    
     finding   of  "substantial   public   benefit"  and   a                                                                    
     determination  that the  project "would  not jeopardize                                                                    
     natural stocks.                                                                                                            
     It's  important   to  note  that  when   shellfish  are                                                                    
     released back  into the  wild by  a permit  holder, the                                                                    
     shellfish become a common property resource.                                                                               
     HB  128 addresses  both rehabilitation  and enhancement                                                                    
     of shellfish stocks.                                                                                                       
     The bill has 2 zero fiscal notes                                                                                           
10:04:24 AM                                                                                                                   
REPRESENTATIVE NEUMAN asked if there are mechanisms in the bill                                                                 
to allow the commissioner the authority to ensure compliance.                                                                   
10:05:08 AM                                                                                                                   
MARY  HAKALA,  Staff,  Representative  Dan  Ortiz,  Alaska  State                                                               
Legislature,  said the  commissioner has  the discretion  to shut                                                               
down the operation  entirely by invoking the  safeguards found in                                                               
Sec. 16.12.040, page 4, line 8, which reads:                                                                                    
     (a)  If  a  permit  holder fails  to  comply  with  the                                                                    
     conditions  and terms  of the  permit  issued under  AS                                                                    
     16.12.010    within   a    reasonable   period    after                                                                    
     notification  by the  department of  noncompliance, the                                                                    
     permit may  be suspended or revoked,  in the discretion                                                                    
     of the commissioner.                                                                                                       
     (b)  If the  commissioner finds  that the  operation of                                                                    
     the permitted activity is not  in the best interests of                                                                    
     the public,  the commissioner may alter  the conditions                                                                    
     of the  permit to mitigate  the adverse effects  of the                                                                    
     operation or,  if the adverse effects  are irreversible                                                                    
     and  cannot  be   mitigated  sufficiently,  initiate  a                                                                    
     termination of  the operation under  the permit  over a                                                                    
     reasonable  period  under  the  circumstances,  not  to                                                                    
     exceed four years.                                                                                                         
10:06:17 AM                                                                                                                   
REPRESENTATIVE FANSLER  noted that  the terms  rehabilitation and                                                               
enhancement  were  an  initial concern,  and  asked  whether  the                                                               
situation has been addressed.                                                                                                   
REPRESENTATIVE ORTIZ deferred comment.                                                                                          
10:07:16 AM                                                                                                                   
FORREST BOWERS,  Deputy Director, Commercial  Fisheries Division,                                                               
directed attention to the bill, page  8, line 18, to indicate the                                                               
definitions of the terms for  application to HB 128.  Enhancement                                                               
includes increasing  the wild stocks reproduction  beyond natural                                                               
levels.     Rehabilitation  is  taking  a   depressed  stock  and                                                               
rebuilding it to a natural  reproductive level.  A rehabilitation                                                               
project  generally ends  once a  stock has  recovered to  a level                                                               
that   it  can   sustain   a  common   property  harvest   versus                                                               
enhancement, which may continue for a period of time.                                                                           
REPRESENTATIVE  FANSLER  asked  whether   the  use  of  the  term                                                               
enhancement,  in   the  bill   title,  accurately   reflects  the                                                               
sponsor's intent.                                                                                                               
MR. BOWERS said  the title is accurate, and added  that the terms                                                               
were scrutinized for the purposes required in HB 128.                                                                           
REPRESENTATIVE  FANSLER commented  on the  importance of  clarity                                                               
and  maintaining a  universal meaning  for  the terms  throughout                                                               
10:10:42 AM                                                                                                                   
REPRESENTATIVE   NEUMAN  said   that  when   enhancement  occurs,                                                               
introduction  of  a  species  is taking  place,  and  asked  what                                                               
science  goes into  that decision,  and what  steps are  taken to                                                               
determine how the action might  affect existing aquatic life.  He                                                               
further   asked   if    a   peer   review   is    part   of   the                                                               
consideration/permitting process.                                                                                               
MR.  BOWERS  reported  that  the   types  of  projects  initially                                                               
anticipated  would be  efforts for  rebuilding  stocks that  once                                                               
existed  in   abundance.    Future  projects   might  propose  to                                                               
introduce  outside species,  and  applicants  could expect  close                                                               
scrutiny  to  be  exercised  prior  to  permitting.    Successful                                                               
species  introduction  has  occurred elsewhere,  such  as  Norway                                                               
introducing king crab  into Barents Sea, and  those successes and                                                               
challenges would be studied and compared.                                                                                       
REPRESENTATIVE  NEUMAN suggested  that peer  reviews would  be in                                                               
order along  with consideration for the  entire biological system                                                               
into which organisms are being introduced, or reintroduced.                                                                     
MR.  BOWERS  assured  the  committee that  the  bill  includes  a                                                               
provision  for   engaging  an  external  review   by  independent                                                               
experts, to advise the commissioner on any permitting decisions.                                                                
10:14:25 AM                                                                                                                   
REPRESENTATIVE FANSLER  moved to report  HB 128 out  of committee                                                               
with individual recommendations and  the accompanying zero fiscal                                                               
note.    Without objection,  HB  128  was  moved from  the  House                                                               
Special Committee on Fisheries.                                                                                                 
10:14:46 AM                                                                                                                   
CHAIR STUTES thanked the participants and concluded the meeting.                                                                
There being no  further business before the  committee, the House                                                               
Special  Committee on  Fisheries meeting  was adjourned  at 10:15                                                               

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
HB128 Supporting Document-JEDC.pdf HFSH 4/4/2017 10:00:00 AM
HB 128
HB128 Supporting Document-Alutiiq Pride Shellfish Hatchery.pdf HFSH 4/4/2017 10:00:00 AM
HB 128