Legislature(1993 - 1994)
04/19/1993 08:00 AM RES
* first hearing in first committee of referral
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
HOUSE RESOURCES STANDING COMMITTEE April 19, 1993 8:00 a.m. MEMBERS PRESENT Representative Bill Williams, Chairman Representative Con Bunde Representative Pat Carney Representative John Davies Representative Joe Green Representative Jeannette James Representative Eldon Mulder Representative David Finkelstein MEMBERS ABSENT Representative Bill Hudson, Vice Chairman OTHER LEGISLATORS PRESENT Senator Robin Taylor Senator Mike Miller Representative Gene Therriault COMMITTEE CALENDAR SB 43: "An Act relating to transplantation of elk." CSSB 43 (FIN) (EFD FLD) HEARD AND HELD IN COMMITTEE FOR FURTHER CONSIDERATION SB 46: "An Act relating to moose farming and relating to game farming." CSSB 46 (FIN) HEARD AND HELD IN COMMITTEE FOR FURTHER CONSIDERATION WITNESS REGISTER Senator Robin Taylor Alaska State Legislature State Capitol, Room 30 Juneau, Alaska 99801-1182 Phone: 465-3873 Position Statement: Prime Sponsor, SB 43 David Kelleyhouse, Director Division of Wildlife Conservation Alaska Department of Fish and Game P.O. Box 25526 Juneau, Alaska 99802-5526 Phone: 465-4190 Position Statement: Opposed SB 43 Senator Mike Miller Alaska State Legislature State Capitol, Room 423 Juneau, Alaska 99801-1182 Phone: 465-4976 Position Statement: Prime Sponsor, SB 46 Bill Ward Ward Farms Soldotna, Alaska Phone: 262-5135 Position Statement: Objected to moose farming in Alaska PREVIOUS ACTION BILL: SB 43 SHORT TITLE: GRANTS TO TRANSPLANT ELK BILL VERSION: CSSB 43(FIN)(EFD FLD) SPONSOR(S): SENATOR(S) TAYLOR TITLE: "An Act relating to transplantation of elk." JRN-DATE JRN-PG ACTION 01/11/93 26 (S) READ THE FIRST TIME/REFERRAL(S) 01/11/93 26 (S) RESOURCES, FINANCE 01/20/93 (S) RES AT 03:30 PM BUTROVICH ROOM 205 01/20/93 (S) MINUTE(RES) 01/25/93 (S) RES AT 03:30 PM BUTROVICH ROOM 205 01/25/93 (S) MINUTE(RES) 01/27/93 168 (S) RES RPT CS 2DP 4NR (NEW TITLE) 01/27/93 168 (S) ZERO FN TO SB & CS PUBLISHED (F&G) 03/05/93 (S) FIN AT 09:00 AM SENATE FINANCE 518 03/08/93 656 (S) FIN RPT CS 3DP 4NR (NEW TITLE) 03/08/93 656 (S) ZERO FN TO FIN CS (S.FIN/F&G) 03/09/93 (S) RLS AT 12:15 PM FAHRENKAMP ROOM 203 03/09/93 (S) MINUTE(RLS) 03/10/93 710 (S) RULES RPT 3 CALENDAR 1NR 3/10 03/10/93 711 (S) READ THE SECOND TIME 03/10/93 711 (S) FIN CS ADOPTED UNAN CONSENT 03/10/93 712 (S) AM NO 1 FAILED Y8 N11 E1 03/10/93 713 (S) AM NO 2 FAILED Y8 N11 E1 03/10/93 714 (S) ADVANCE TO 3RD READING FAILED Y11 N8 E1 03/10/93 714 (S) THIRD READING 3/11/93 CALENDAR 03/11/93 750 (S) READ THE THIRD TIME CSSB 43 (FIN) 03/11/93 750 (S) RETURN TO 2ND FOR AM 1 ADPTD Y11 N8 E1 03/11/93 751 (S) AM NO 3 BY ADAMS FAILED Y8 N11 E1 03/11/93 752 (S) RETURN TO 2ND FOR AM 4 ADPTD Y12 N7 E1 03/11/93 752 (S) AM NO 4 BY ADAMS FAILED Y8 N11 E1 03/11/93 753 (S) RETURN TO SECOND FOR AM 6 UNAN CONSENT 03/11/93 753 (S) AM NO 6 BY ADAMS FAILED Y8 N11 E1 03/11/93 754 (S) AUTOMATICALLY IN THIRD READING 03/11/93 754 (S) PASSED Y12 N7 E1 03/11/93 755 (S) EFFECTIVE DATE FAILED Y12 N7 E1 03/11/93 755 (S) DUNCAN NOTICE OF RECONSIDERATION 03/12/93 782 (S) RECON TAKEN UP - IN THIRD READING 03/12/93 782 (S) PASSED ON RECONSIDERATION Y11 N8 E1 03/12/93 783 (S) EFFECTIVE DATE FAILED ON RECON Y12 N7 E1 03/12/93 786 (S) TRANSMITTED TO (H) 03/15/93 642 (H) READ THE FIRST TIME/REFERRAL(S) 03/15/93 642 (H) RESOURCES, FINANCE 04/16/93 (H) MINUTE(RES) 04/19/93 (H) RES AT 08:00 AM CAPITOL 124 BILL: SB 46 SHORT TITLE: AUTHORIZE MOOSE FARMING BILL VERSION: CSSB 46(FIN) SPONSOR(S): SENATOR(S) MILLER,Frank,Pearce,Sharp,Taylor; REPRESENTATIVE(S) Therriault TITLE: "An Act relating to moose farming and relating to game farming." JRN-DATE JRN-PG ACTION 01/14/93 60 (S) READ THE FIRST TIME/REFERRAL(S) 01/14/93 60 (S) RESOURCES, FINANCE 01/15/93 76 (S) COSPONSOR: LINCOLN 01/29/93 189 (S) COSPONSOR: SHARP 02/01/93 (S) RES AT 03:30 PM BUTROVICH ROOM 205 02/01/93 (S) MINUTE(RES) 02/03/93 (S) MINUTE(RES) 02/05/93 240 (S) RES RPT 4DP 02/05/93 240 (S) ZERO FISCAL NOTE (F&G) 02/17/93 (S) FIN AT 09:00 AM SENATE FINANCE 518 03/01/93 (S) FIN AT 09:00 AM SENATE FINANCE 518 03/03/93 588 (S) FIN RPT CS 5DP 1DNP NEW TITLE 03/03/93 588 (S) FISCAL NOTE TO SB & CS (DNR) 03/03/93 588 (S) ZERO FNS TO CS (F&G, DEC) 03/09/93 (S) RLS AT 12:15 PM FAHRENKAMP ROOM 203 03/09/93 (S) MINUTE(RLS) 03/10/93 710 (S) RULES RPT 3 CAL 1NR 3/10/93 03/10/93 714 (S) READ THE SECOND TIME 03/10/93 714 (S) FIN CS ADOPTED Y14 N5 E1 03/10/93 715 (S) AM NO 1 FAILED Y5 N14 E1 03/10/93 716 (S) AM NO 2 FAILED Y7 N12 E1 03/10/93 717 (S) AM NO 3 FAILED Y8 N11 E1 03/10/93 715 (S) AM NO 4 FAILED Y8 N11 E1 03/10/93 716 (S) ADVANCE TO 3RD READING FLD Y11 N8 E1 03/10/93 719 (S) THIRD READING 3/11 CALENDAR 03/10/93 723 (S) COSPONSOR: TAYLOR 03/11/93 755 (S) READ THE THIRD TIME CSSB 46(FIN) 03/11/93 755 (S) PASSED Y11 N8 E1 03/11/93 756 (S) ADAMS NOTICE OF RECONSIDERATION 03/11/93 757 (S) COSPONSOR WITHDRAWN: LINCOLN 03/12/93 784 (S) RECON TAKEN UP - IN THIRD READING 03/12/93 785 (S) PASSED ON RECONSIDERATION Y12 N7 E1 03/12/93 786 (S) TRANSMITTED TO (H) 03/15/93 642 (H) READ THE FIRST TIME/REFERRAL(S) 03/15/93 642 (H) RESOURCES, FINANCE 03/15/93 658 (H) CROSS SPONSOR(S): THERRIAULT 04/16/93 (H) MINUTE(RES) 04/19/93 (H) RES AT 08:00 AM CAPITOL 124 ACTION NARRATIVE TAPE 93-48, SIDE A Number 000 The House Resources Committee was called to order by Chairman Bill Williams at 8:25 a.m. Members present at the call to order were Representatives Williams, Bunde, Carney, Green, James, Finkelstein and Mulder. Members absent at the call were Representatives Hudson and Davies. CHAIRMAN BILL WILLIAMS announced that the meeting was being held by teleconference with a number of sites statewide. He said the committee would first consider SB 43, followed by SB 46. SB 43: GRANTS TO TRANSPLANT ELK Number 080 SENATOR ROBIN TAYLOR, PRIME SPONSOR OF SB 43, referred committee members to a written sponsor statement in members' packets, and said that rather than read from that statement, he would address his comments to respond to criticisms raised regarding the bill. (A copy of the Senator's sponsor statement may be found in the House Resources Committee Room, Capitol Room 124, and after the adjournment of the second session of the 18th Alaska State Legislature, in the Legislative Reference Library.) During his remarks, his legislative aide played video footage showing elk that had previously been transplanted to Afognak Island. SENATOR TAYLOR referred to the successful transplant of bison in Delta Junction, which he described as a profitable venture. Eight hundred people, he said, applied for bison permits, with a $10 fee charged each applicant. He also noted that the presence of bison had not endangered any other species in the area. Number 105 SENATOR TAYLOR, addressing the concerns raised by Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADF&G) biologists, said that the ADF&G had not conducted sufficient research to be able to determine what effect elk would have. Specifically, he said there were no conclusive studies of what the elk would eat and how that would affect native deer populations. He pointed out that in 1928 and 1929, the federal government transplanted elk, and those elk populations were not studied. Number 224 SENATOR TAYLOR addressed additional issues of concern related to the proposed elk transplant. Regarding the potential for the spread of disease, he noted that elk transplanted six years ago are healthy. He said that on Afognak Island, there is no evidence that the presence of elk has adversely affected deer populations. He also refuted the argument that the transplant would result in a small gene pool among the transplanted elk. He criticized the ADF&G for its failure to fund and conduct studies on the previously transplanted elk populations. Number 313 SENATOR TAYLOR told the committee that the elk transplant had the support of the Ketchikan, Sitka and Stikine sportsmen's associations, who he said had gathered up to 1,200 names on petitions that showed their interest. Regarding a previous elk transplant, Senator Taylor noted that he had seen data in a doctoral thesis which, he said, concluded that deer and elk have a symbiotic relationship, and that the presence of elk actually has the effect of giving deer a better chance of surviving predation. Number 372 REPRESENTATIVE ELDON MULDER referred to the ADF&G fiscal note related to SB 43. He commented that it seemed out of line and asked Senator Taylor to respond. Number 378 SENATOR TAYLOR replied that he would like to see the ADF&G actually spend that much on elk research, but added that the state cannot afford that with its other priorities. He commented that the ADF&G should have spent more in the past 30 years. He added that the size of the fiscal note could be an indication that the ADF&G is trying to "bury the bill." Number 410 REPRESENTATIVE MULDER asked what would be a more reasonable estimate of the cost of the transplant. SENATOR TAYLOR replied that the sportsmen's associations would pay for the transplant as a volunteer effort. He clarified that SB 43 only authorizes the transplant, and is not intended to fund the transplant of elk. Number 425 REPRESENTATIVE DAVID FINKELSTEIN remarked that the ADF&G fiscal note included one million dollars for moving the animals. Another $560,000 over six years was included in the fiscal note for research, he commented. The question, he added, was that assuming the associations wanted to pay the million dollars, and if SB 43 has the power to override the Board of Game, would anyone who has enough money be able to do whatever they want with game in Alaska. He suggested it would be a terrible precedent to set. Number 458 SENATOR TAYLOR replied that the authorization by the legislature would not allow anyone besides the ADF&G to bring in wild game animals from outside the state. He noted that the importation of game animals would still have to go through the permitting process, the game would have to be examined by doctors in both states, and would still be subject to regulation by the ADF&G. He mentioned that, according to Senator Fred Zharoff, there were suspicions that approximately 70 elk had been run off a cliff three years ago by an ADF&G helicopter. REPRESENTATIVE FINKELSTEIN again suggested that by granting the legislative authorization for the transfer of elk now, it would have the result of superceding the authority of the Board of Game, not just in this instance, but by establishing that policy for the future. Number 491 SENATOR TAYLOR reiterated that he did not believe SB 43 would override the gatekeepers' role, which is the role of the ADF&G. Number 496 REPRESENTATIVE MULDER suggested it was fully within the scope of the legislature to give direction to the ADF&G and the Board of Game. He said it was a question of whether to expand the state's resources or leave things at the status quo. Referring to the fiscal note, he said it calls for elk transplants to four locations in Southeast. He noted that the back-up material in members' packets indicated the ADF&G Commissioner Rosier's statements that elk had been inadvertently introduced to Zarembo Island and Prince of Wales. He asked Senator Taylor whether any documentation supported that claim. SENATOR TAYLOR replied that it appeared elk had reached other islands than those they had been transplanted to because they are good swimmers. He indicated that the ADF&G policy seems to be to shoot those that migrate to other islands. Number 522 REPRESENTATIVE PAT CARNEY asked Senator Taylor to elaborate on comments he had made twice regarding the ADF&G shooting elk. Number 525 SENATOR TAYLOR referred to a resolution he said was, in part, drafted by someone from the ADF&G, which was placed before the Board of Game. The resolution was initiated, he said, by people from Ketchikan who had seen the success of past elk transplants and wanted to have a drawing for a permit to hunt one elk. The resolution was submitted to the Board of Game through the local advisory board, he explained. Somehow, he said, that was changed into a resolution calling for an open hunting season on any elk found anyplace other than Zarembo or Etolin Islands, without restrictions on sex, season, or number. Number 550 SENATOR TAYLOR explained that he contacted the chairman of the Board of Game and asked how the ADF&G would regulate where elk was being hunted and he did not receive a satisfactory answer. He suggested the result of such a hunt opening would be to eliminate every elk in Southeast Alaska. The board reversed that policy, he said, after objections. Number 570 REPRESENTATIVE FINKELSTEIN, referring to SB 43, asked whether the language is written so as to make the transplant mandatory or discretionary. He pointed to the use of the word "shall," and recommended the committee hear from the Division of Legal Services on the matter. Number 580 CHAIRMAN WILLIAMS raised the issue to Senator Taylor of the legislative budget cutting process. He remarked that it usually is the case that field services and personnel are cut, and said that the Senate had cut the budget for the ADF&G significantly. Regarding Senator Taylor's comments that the ADF&G had not adequately studied the elk previously transplanted, Chairman Williams suggested that the ADF&G has not had funding to do this research. In Ketchikan, he said, only one field person in the ADF&G is assigned to cover a large amount of land. He asked Senator Taylor if the cuts in the ADF&G budget could relate to poor research of the elk. Number 600 SENATOR TAYLOR said he would not suggest that. He did not know how the ADF&G established its priorities, or why the elk had not been studied. Regarding Representative Finkelstein's comments on the mandatory nature of the language in SB 43, he explained that the use of "shall" gives direction to the ADF&G and the Board of Game to authorize the elk, and reiterated that the actual transplant would be a volunteer effort. Number 620 REPRESENTATIVE CON BUNDE asked Senator Taylor to comment on how elk would fit in the subsistence issue, and also whether there was a sufficient elk population in the Lower 48 to justify the transplant. Number 628 SENATOR TAYLOR replied that elk could not be subsistence hunted in Southeast because that would not meet the traditional use guidelines. He raised the point that if the elk population impacted the native deer population, which is subsistence-use game, that would be another question. Regarding the question about Lower 48 elk populations, he had been assured there were sufficient numbers, particularly in Oregon, from which the elk would come. REPRESENTATIVE BUNDE noted that there was subsistence hunting for bison, which are not traditional use animals. He suggested this approach be looked into. SENATOR TAYLOR commented that in the future subsistence use might include elk, and he would not have any problem with that as long as there was sound management of the game. Number 652 CHAIRMAN WILLIAMS announced that the committee would next hear public testimony. DAVID KELLEYHOUSE, DIRECTOR, DIVISION OF WILDLIFE CONSERVATION, ADF&G, told the committee that he was upset by Senator Taylor's allegations. He assured the committee that the ADF&G boasts the finest professional biologists. He said that the ADF&G's concerns over introduction of an exotic species to Southeast are valid. He said those concerns are based on the experiences of other northwestern states, and referred to a behavioral study on competition and dominance in elk and deer populations. He said that there should be more studies before elk are introduced, and suggested that the 1987 transplant of elk may have been a mistake. Number 690 MR. KELLEYHOUSE, referring to Senator Taylor's comments that the ADF&G had failed to adequately study elk populations, said that because elk densities are so low in Southeast, the ADF&G has not been able to study the food habits as conclusively as they would like. He recommended that elk not be transplanted until such information can be quantified. On Afognak Island, he said, deer and elk have crashed over 50% in the past four years. He said an area biologist with twenty years experience had determined that there is competition between deer and elk on Afognak Island. MR. KELLEYHOUSE reported that the biologist felt it would be a mistake to introduce elk to increase hunting opportunities, because deer would outproduce elk for hunting purposes ten to one. He noted that approximately three to four deer can be harvested per square mile per year, compared to one-third of an elk. Hunter success between the two species he said, is about 85% for deer and 15% for elk. He also mentioned that there is no wolf predation on Afognak Island, which is a reason both elk and deer have prospered on the island. The presence of an alternative prey species, he explained, will change the balance. TAPE 93-48, SIDE B Number 000 MR. KELLEYHOUSE told the committee that he would not have opposed the introduction of bison and musk ox to Alaska because those species were determined to have been native species in the past. Regarding the allegation that the ADF&G helicopters had run 70 elk off a cliff, he called the charge untrue and unsubstantiated. The ADF&G feels, he said that more time is needed to study the Etolin transplant before it is implemented. MR. KELLEYHOUSE referred to the Board of Game, and said the board's actions were consistent with a management plan drafted in 1986, which said that the elk would be put on Etolin Island and any elk that ventured off that island would be captured and put back on the island or a hunting season would be opened to prevent the elk from spreading to other parts of Southeast. He acknowledged that elk disburses widely, and noted that the ADF&G's policy is that if that turns out to be injurious to native species, the elk should be contained to one island. Number 044 REPRESENTATIVE CARNEY asked Mr. Kelleyhouse to explain the competition for forage among the deer and elk populations on Afognak Island. MR. KELLEYHOUSE said that in any place where deer and elk coexist, deer will outnumber elk. He noted, however, that where elk has been introduced, there has been a documented decline in the abundance of deer. REPRESENTATIVE CARNEY asked how those facts relate to regulations proposed by the Board of Game to have an open season on elk. MR. KELLEYHOUSE explained that the regulation was taken off the books by the board within three days of its passage. The management plan, he said, called for increasing the elk on Etolin Island to 250 before instituting a harvest, and providing that the elk would not leave Etolin Island. It was not intended to eliminate elk on Etolin or Zarembo Islands, he added. REPRESENTATIVE JOE GREEN asked whether data had been gathered on how the elk and deer interact in areas in the Lower 48 where they share a habitat area. Number 098 MR. KELLEYHOUSE clarified that the species of deer in Southeast, the Sitka black-tailed deer, is a different species than the deer that share habitat with elk in the Lower 48. He described the eating patterns of deer and elk in the Lower 48, with deer as browsers and elk as grazers. The eating patterns here are different, he said, and elk and deer would share the same food source with more overlap. He noted that the presence of predator species would also play a role. Number 130 REPRESENTATIVE GREEN asked whether there were instances where both deer and elk coexist without predators. MR. KELLEYHOUSE replied that this was the case on Afognak Island. He added that the ADF&G was concerned with the effects of deep snows and competition in a limited area for the same forage. Number 155 REPRESENTATIVE BUNDE was most familiar with the elk found on the Olympic Peninsula, where there was abundant old growth timber similar to the habitat found in Southeast Alaska. He asked whether there were any comparison studies of the two areas. MR. KELLEYHOUSE replied that the Olympic Peninsula habitat was similar, but not exactly the same as Southeast's. He called Vancouver Island more similar in habitat to Southeast. He added that much of the research material the ADF&G has received has been from the British Columbia government. Number 168 REPRESENTATIVE BUNDE asked whether the Columbia black-tailed deer was native to Vancouver Island. MR. KELLEYHOUSE replied in the affirmative, and said that the Columbia black-tailed deer has different food habits from the Sitka black-tailed deer. REPRESENTATIVE CARNEY asked why the ADF&G had not done more studies of the previously transplanted elk. MR. KELLEYHOUSE replied that because there are so few animals and the island is so big, there is little impact from competition for food. He said the ADF&G had done limited monitoring of radio collars to track the disbursement of the animals on Etolin. Afognak would be a better site, he added. The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation had given the ADF&G several thousand dollars to study elk on Afognak Island, and the ADF&G, he said, was negotiating with the foundation on whether to use the money there or on Etolin. He noted that it was a matter of priorities, and that the ADF&G does not have a large research staff. MR. KELLEYHOUSE explained that research biologists' primary duties are to enumerate the animals to set hunting seasons, and said that in that regard, they have focussed their efforts on native species. The situation on Etolin, he said, had not developed to the point where any definitive answers could be derived from the research. Problems might not develop for nearly 30 years, he added. Reports from other jurisdictions indicate that the ADF&G's concerns are valid, he added. Number 213 REPRESENTATIVE CARNEY asked whether it would be possible, if the elk population got out of balance because of competition, that hunting regulations could be used to control the situation. MR. KELLEYHOUSE replied that elk are difficult to hunt, particularly in areas of heavy timber cover. Once the elk are introduced to the system, they are not easy to take out, he concluded. Number 227 REPRESENTATIVE MULDER asked whether the Board of Game had ever adopted the policy that was drafted. MR. KELLEYHOUSE replied that the board had passed a resolution. The bottom line, he said, was that elk should be maintained on Etolin Island and prevented from spreading to other islands and the mainland. The resolution came from the Board of Game itself, and not through the ADF&G, he explained. REPRESENTATIVE MULDER asked whether the policy on which the resolution was based was in existence at the time the elk had been transplanted to Etolin. Number 258 MR. KELLEYHOUSE replied that in 1986, there were provisions in the plan that elk would be maintained on Etolin Island. The policy was not anything new, he assured the committee. REPRESENTATIVE MULDER concurred with Representative Carney that an elk hunting permit would be a highly sought-after permit. Number 271 REPRESENTATIVE FINKELSTEIN asked if the legislature had ever taken action like the one in SB 43, other than in the case of elk. MR. KELLEYHOUSE was not aware of any specific action except for the 1987 elk transplant. In that instance, he added, the transplant was carried out over the objections of the ADF&G. Number 296 REPRESENTATIVE BUNDE had mixed feelings on the issue. He agreed with Mr. Kelleyhouse that elk are difficult to hunt, and added that he had been in Ketchikan in the 1960's when elk had been transplanted and they had all been killed. He asked whether the legislators could get copies of any studies done on the elk/deer issue. Regarding the crash of deer populations on Afognak Island, he asked about the reasons for that, and how hunting bag limits were affected by the decline in population. Number 320 MR. KELLEYHOUSE told Representative Bunde that a series of severe winters with heavy snow cover reduced the elk population from 1500 to 800. Regarding the bag limits on deer during that period, he said he would provide that information to the committee. Number 336 REPRESENTATIVE JEANNETTE JAMES was surprised that someone from the ADF&G would not know the answers to all of the committee's questions. She knew that deer and elk do not eat the same things. She asked why populations could not be controlled through intensive management. Number 368 MR. KELLEYHOUSE responded that the ADF&G does have a general knowledge of the issues raised, but does not have all of the specific information in every instance. Because of low densities in the elk population, he said that there have not been the demand for such detailed information. He reiterated that the eating patterns of deer in Southeast Alaska are different from those of deer that coexist in elk habitat areas in the Lower 48. He said that the discussion related to SB 43 would initiate further research, and stressed that the ADF&G opposes SB 43. Number 385 REPRESENTATIVE JAMES remarked on the challenge involved in hunting elk, and suggested that the state might encourage elk populations for the benefit of sports hunters. MR. KELLEYHOUSE noted that Alaska has 14 natively occurring species of big game animals. He added that he himself has been a big game hunter all his life. The scientific evidence, however, suggests that the introduction of elk could, in the long term, diminish hunting opportunities rather than expand them. Number 399 CHAIRMAN WILLIAMS noted that there were 15 to 20 people waiting to testify on SB 43, and he wished to move on to public testimony. He apologized to those at teleconference sites and said there would not be time to hear all testimony at this meeting. SENATOR TAYLOR clarified that the management plan to which Mr. Kelleyhouse had referred had never been formally adopted. He also wanted to see the studies to which Mr. Kelleyhouse had referred. He called it incredible that the ADF&G had been unable to manage elk herds in Southeast Alaska if they grew too large in size. Regarding the crash of the elk population from 1,500 to 800 on Afognak Island due to winterkill, he suggested that this was not a reasonable explanation or a good example of the ADF&G's management of game. SENATOR TAYLOR remarked that even after the crash of deer populations on Afognak Island, the hunting bag limits remained the same. The main reason for having harvest tickets for up to six deer, he said, was because the ADF&G had allowed the herds to grow so large they were fearful of large winter kills. Number 445 CHAIRMAN WILLIAMS told those assembled that the committee was out of time for testimony on SB 43, and would next consider SB 46. SB 46: AUTHORIZE MOOSE FARMING Number 454 SENATOR MIKE MILLER, PRIME SPONSOR OF SB 46, told the committee that similar legislation had been introduced in the 1992 legislative session. The bill would provide for the development of moose farming in Alaska, is intended to expand economic development opportunities, and would also include caribou. The bill transfers regulatory powers to the ADF&G, the Department of Natural Resources, and the Department of Environmental Conservation. REPRESENTATIVE CARNEY asked why caribou had been added, but not reindeer. Number 498 SENATOR MILLER said this was in keeping with federal regulations which govern reindeer. REPRESENTATIVE GREEN asked if the concept included hunting as is done with bison in the Interior, or would it strictly call for farming in corralled areas. Number 505 SENATOR MILLER replied that a variety of ways were provided for under the provisions of SB 46. These included farming the animals for slaughter, and that idea could be expanded to the Native corporations farming moose to meet village needs. He said that regulations would ensure everything was done properly. Number 522 REPRESENTATIVE GREEN asked if that would create a more difficult oversight to prevent poaching. Number 527 SENATOR MILLER stressed that regulations regarding sale of moose meat would create a reporting system which would reduce that risk. Number 535 BILL WARD, WARD FARMS OF SOLDOTNA, told the committee that he had a background in game farming, having raised elk on the Kenai peninsula since 1990. He noted that he currently raises 57 head of elk. He described the background of the statute authorizing elk farming. He commented that SB 46 provides for good game management by regulating the industry. Number 650 MR. WARD noted that objections to game farming based on the threat of disease in the animals were unfounded. He said that the oversight of the state veterinarian would prevent that. Regarding the threat of escapement, he said regulations provide for adequate fencing. He also noted that threats of poaching have not materialized. He objected to the tactics of those who oppose the farming of wild game species. TAPE 93-49, SIDE A Number 000 MR. WARD concluded his remarks by stating that he did not believe moose farming would be unsustainable, but said that caribou would be supportable and was a valid potential industry. ANNOUNCEMENTS Number 042 CHAIRMAN WILLIAMS announced that the committee would have to discontinue testimony because of time constraints. He announced that the committee planned to meet on Wednesday, April 21, 1993, at 8:00 a.m., to consider SB 77 and SB 132. ADJOURNMENT There being no further business to come before the House Resources Committee, Chairman Williams adjourned the meeting at 9:55 a.m.