Legislature(1993 - 1994)

04/15/1994 08:15 AM RES

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
               HOUSE RESOURCES STANDING COMMITTEE                              
                         April 15, 1994                                        
                            8:15 a.m.                                          
  MEMBERS PRESENT                                                              
  Representative Bill Williams, Chairman                                       
  Representative Bill Hudson, Vice Chairman                                    
  Representative Con Bunde                                                     
  Representative Pat Carney                                                    
  Representative John Davies                                                   
  Representative David Finkelstein                                             
  Representative Joe Green                                                     
  Representative Jeannette James                                               
  Representative Eldon Mulder                                                  
  MEMBERS ABSENT                                                               
  OTHER LEGISLATORS PRESENT                                                    
  Senator Steve Frank                                                          
  COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                           
  SB 310:   "An Act relating to the management and sale of                     
            state timber and relating to the administration of                 
            forest land."                                                      
            HEARD AND HELD FOR FURTHER CONSIDERATION                           
  WITNESS REGISTER                                                             
  SENATOR STEVE FRANK                                                          
  Alaska State Legislature                                                     
  State Capitol, Room 518                                                      
  Juneau, Alaska    99801-1182                                                 
  Phone:  465-3709                                                             
  POSITION STATEMENT:  Prime Sponsor SB 310                                    
  TOM BOUTIN, Director                                                         
  Division of Forestry                                                         
  Department of Natural Resources                                              
  400 Willoughby Ave.                                                          
  Juneau, Alaska   99801-1724                                                  
  Phone:  465-2491                                                             
  POSITION STATEMENT:  Supported SB 310 and answered questions                 
  ELLEN FRITTS, Deputy Director                                                
  Division of Habitat and Restoration                                          
  Alaska Department of Fish and Game                                           
  P.O. Box 25526                                                               
  Juneau, Alaska   99802-5526                                                  
  Phone:  465-4105                                                             
  POSITION STATEMENT:  Answered questions                                      
  GERON BRUCE, Legislative Liaison                                             
  Alaska Department of Fish and Game                                           
  P.O. Box 25526                                                               
  Juneau, Alaska   99802-5526                                                  
  Phone:  465-6143                                                             
  POSITION STATEMENT:  Answered questions                                      
  ALBERT PAGH                                                                  
  Four Star Lumber Company                                                     
  2849 Parks Highway                                                           
  Fairbanks, Alaska   99709                                                    
  Phone:  479-6643                                                             
  POSITION STATEMENT:  Supported concept of SB 310                             
  MARICKE BARNES                                                               
  517 Revilla                                                                  
  Ketchikan, Alaska   99901                                                    
  Phone:  247-1275                                                             
  POSITION STATEMENT:  Supported SB 310                                        
  TROY REINHART, Executive Director                                            
  Alaska Forest Association                                                    
  111 Stedman, #200                                                            
  Ketchikan, Alaska   99901                                                    
  Phone:  225-6114                                                             
  POSITION STATEMENT:  Supported SB 310                                        
  ROBERT DENNEY                                                                
  Talkeetna, Alaska   99676                                                    
  POSITION STATEMENT:  Opposed SB 310                                          
  ROBERTA SHELDON                                                              
  Talkeetna, Alaska   99676                                                    
  POSITION STATEMENT:  Opposed SB 310                                          
  ED SHARP                                                                     
  Lake Creek Lodge, Alaska                                                     
  Phone:  733-2051                                                             
  POSITION STATEMENT:  Opposed SB 310                                          
  PREVIOUS ACTION                                                              
  BILL:  SB 310                                                                
  SPONSOR(S): SENATOR(S) FRANK,Taylor,Pearce,                                  
  REPRESENTATIVE(S) Olberg                                                     
  JRN-DATE     JRN-PG               ACTION                                     
  02/14/94      2829    (S)   READ THE FIRST TIME/REFERRAL(S)                  
  02/14/94      2829    (S)   RESOURCES                                        
  03/02/94              (S)   RES AT 3:30 PM BUTROVICH RM 205                  
  03/05/94              (H)   MINUTE(ECO)                                      
  03/16/94              (S)   RES AT 3:30 PM BUTROVICH RM 205                  
  03/22/94              (S)   RES AT 1:30 PM BUTROVICH RM 205                  
  03/24/94              (S)   RES AT 03:30 PM FAHRENKAMP                       
                              ROOM 203                                         
  03/28/94              (S)   RES AT 3:30 PM BUTROVICH RM 205                  
  03/30/94      3406    (S)   RES RPT  CS 4DP 1DNP NEW TITLE                   
  03/30/94      3407    (S)   ZERO FN TO SB & CS PUBLISHED                     
  03/30/94              (S)   RLS AT 11:35 AM FAHRENKAMP                       
                              ROOM 203                                         
  03/30/94              (S)   MINUTE(RLS)                                      
  04/05/94      3448    (S)   RULES RPT 3CAL 2NR 4/5/94                        
  04/05/94      3449    (S)   HELD TO 4/6/94                                   
  04/06/94      3476    (S)   READ THE SECOND TIME                             
  04/06/94      3477    (S)   RES  CS ADOPTED UNAN CONSENT                     
  04/06/94      3477    (S)   AM NO  1     MOVED BY LITTLE                     
  04/06/94      3478    (S)   AM NO  1     FAILED  Y9 N11                      
  04/06/94      3478    (S)   AM NO  2     MOVED BY LITTLE                     
  04/06/94      3479    (S)   AM NO  2     FAILED  Y9 N11                      
  04/06/94      3479    (S)   AM NO  3     NOT OFFERED                         
  04/06/94      3479    (S)   AM NO  4     MOVED BY LITTLE                     
  04/06/94      3479    (S)   AM NO  4     FAILED  Y9 N11                      
  04/06/94      3480    (S)   AM NO  5     MOVED BY DUNCAN                     
  04/06/94      3480    (S)   AM NO  5     FAILED  Y8 N12                      
  04/06/94      3480    (S)   AM NO  6     MOVED BY DUNCAN                     
  04/06/94      3481    (S)   AM NO  6     FAILED  Y9 N11                      
  04/06/94      3481    (S)   AM NO  7     MOVED BY DUNCAN                     
  04/06/94      3482    (S)   AM NO  7     FAILED  Y9 N11                      
  04/06/94      3482    (S)   AM NO  8     MOVED BY DUNCAN                     
  04/06/94      3482    (S)   AM NO  8     FAILED  Y9 N11                      
  04/06/94      3483    (S)   AM NO  9     MOVED BY LINCOLN                    
  04/06/94      3483    (S)   AM NO  9     FAILED  Y9 N11                      
  04/06/94      3483    (S)   AM NO 10     MOVED BY ZHAROFF                    
  04/06/94      3484    (S)   AM NO 10     FAILED  Y9 N11                      
  04/06/94      3484    (S)   AM NO 11     MOVED BY ZHAROFF                    
  04/06/94      3484    (S)   AM NO 11     FAILED  Y9 N11                      
  04/06/94      3485    (S)   AM NO 12     MOVED BY LINCOLN                    
  04/06/94      3485    (S)   AM NO 12     FAILED  Y10 N10                     
  04/06/94      3486    (S)   AM NO 13     MOVED BY ZHAROFF                    
  04/06/94      3486    (S)   AM NO 13     FAILED  Y9 N11                      
  04/06/94      3486    (S)   AM NO 14     MOVED BY ADAMS                      
  04/06/94      3487    (S)   AM NO 14     FAILED  Y8 N12                      
  04/06/94      3487    (S)   ADVANCE TO THIRD READING FLD                     
                              Y11 N9                                           
  04/06/94      3487    (S)   THIRD READING 4/7 CALENDAR                       
  04/07/94      3506    (S)   READ THE THIRD TIME                              
                              CSSB 310(RES)                                    
  04/07/94      3506    (S)   PASSED Y11 N8 E1                                 
  04/07/94      3506    (S)   Adams NOTICE OF RECONSIDERATION                  
  04/08/94      3527    (S)   RECON TAKEN UP/IN THIRD READING                  
  04/08/94      3527    (S)   PASSED ON RECONSIDERATION Y11                    
                              N7  E2                                           
  04/08/94      3531    (S)   TRANSMITTED TO (H)                               
  04/08/94      3212    (H)   READ THE FIRST TIME/REFERRAL(S)                  
  04/08/94      3212    (H)   RESOURCES                                        
  04/08/94      3220    (H)   CROSS SPONSOR(S):  OLBERG                        
  04/15/94              (H)   RES AT 08:15 AM CAPITOL 124                      
  ACTION NARRATIVE                                                             
  TAPE 94-53, 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, Hudson, Bunde,                  
  Davies, Green, and Mulder.  Members absent were                              
  Representatives Carney, Finkelstein, and James.                              
  CHAIRMAN BILL WILLIAMS announced there is a quorum present.                  
  He said the meeting is on teleconference with Anchorage,                     
  Cordova, Fairbanks, Homer, Kodiak, Ketchikan, Mat-Su,                        
  Petersburg, Seward, Sitka, Kenai/Soldotna, Tok, Valdez,                      
  Nenana, Haines, Port Protection, Talkeetna, and Lake Creek                   
  (CHAIRMAN WILLIAMS noted for the record that REPRESENTATIVE                  
  JAMES joined the committee at 8:26 a.m.)                                     
  SB 310 - STATE/PRIVATE/MUNI TIMBER OPERATION/SALE                            
  CHAIRMAN WILLIAMS noted this is the first hearing in the                     
  House for SB 310.  He said today's goal is to provide the                    
  committee with a general briefing and understanding of the                   
  provisions of the bill, and then take public testimony.                      
  SENATOR STEVE FRANK, PRIME SPONSOR, stated SB 310 is                         
  designed to encourage investment and development in the                      
  timber industry by allowing long term sales.  He said a past                 
  problem has been the state being unable to commit to a long                  
  term sale with provisions giving preference for in-state                     
  processing and a stable long term supply.  When SB 310 was                   
  introduced, there was a lot of public outcry about some of                   
  the provisions in the bill.  He explained the public's                       
  comments were taken seriously, resulting in an exhaustive                    
  public hearing process and a bill rewrite, including 33                      
  amendments.  He pointed out the Tanana Chiefs Conference                     
  (TCC) was very involved in the process and offered many good                 
  amendments, many of which were used.                                         
  SENATOR FRANK reviewed amendments which were made to make                    
  the bill less objectionable.  He noted there had been                        
  concerns about the public process aspects of SB 310.  The                    
  public process was strengthened by adding an additional                      
  public comment period before the commissioner makes a                        
  tentative selection.  In addition, after the commissioner                    
  chooses a preferred operator, the second public comment                      
  period was lengthened from 60 to 90 days.  This change was                   
  requested by TCC so they could have greater participation by                 
  people from out of town.  He stated another addition                         
  includes a public notice provision so the public will be                     
  aware of small timber sales, which are exempt from the five                  
  year schedule.                                                               
  Number 066                                                                   
  SENATOR FRANK stated the twenty year extension was changed                   
  to a renewal type of process, so that after three quarters                   
  of the term of the contract a renewal process will begin                     
  allowing the public to comment again and the commissioner to                 
  come out with another request for proposals (RFP), to                        
  determine if the same or other operators should be granted                   
  another term on the contract.  He said the environmental                     
  protection provisions were clarified.  He pointed out there                  
  have been mischaracterizations of SB 310.  People have said                  
  there will not be a requirement to comply with the Forest                    
  Practices Act.  He stressed that is untrue.  He explained                    
  under SB 310, there is a requirement that the forest                         
  management agreement (FMA) be consistent with existing land                  
  use plans.                                                                   
  SENATOR FRANK said a one million board foot cap on small                     
  timber sales was put into SB 310.  He stated most small                      
  timber sales can work fine under the five year schedule.                     
  However, under the current law, there is no flexibility.                     
  For example, if a road was being built and there was timber                  
  in the right-of-way, that timber could not be sold because                   
  it was not on the five year schedule.  This change gives the                 
  Department of Natural Resources (DNR) the flexibility to                     
  make a small sale, if that sale makes sense.  He stated a                    
  provision was also added which requires a biennial operating                 
  plan, so the department is on top of the contract through                    
  the length of the contract.  This provision strengthens the                  
  department's ability to monitor what the operator is doing                   
  in regard to complying with the contract.                                    
  Number 098                                                                   
  SENATOR FRANK stated there are two different definitions of                  
  sustained yield in the current law.  He said the more                        
  restrictive definition in Title 38 was used in SB 310, at                    
  the suggestion of TCC.  That definition provides further                     
  protection for not cutting more than what can be sustained                   
  on a long term basis.  He explained there is also a                          
  requirement for the FMA's to have deactivation and                           
  termination provisions in the contract, in case there is not                 
  compliance with the contract terms.  Bonding can also be                     
  included in the contract but is not required.  According to                  
  the department, the bonding market is unstable at times and                  
  it is better not to put that requirement in law but rather                   
  leave bonding up to the department.                                          
  SENATOR FRANK said protection for other forest uses has been                 
  clarified.  Existing forest uses have to be considered when                  
  evaluating a FMA, including public access for existing                       
  forest uses.  The FMA's are required to have provisions for                  
  existing public access and consider the interest of private                  
  landowners when granting access.  Removed from the bill were                 
  some of the more controversial elements which were not                       
  necessary, including the provision that the commissioner                     
  could not close more than 640 acres to mineral entry.                        
  Number 150                                                                   
  SENATOR FRANK stated the words "activities" and "lifestyles"                 
  were retained.  There had been confusion as to what those                    
  words meant.  The requirement that a timber sale be on a                     
  five year sale plan for two years in advance was retained.                   
  He felt there has been a lot of work done on SB 310,                         
  including a large amount of public testimony.  He said there                 
  is still opposition to the bill but he feels he worked                       
  honestly and straightforwardly with people who have                          
  expressed concerns.  He thought CSSB 310(RES) is quite                       
  workable and one which is supported broadly.  With the                       
  provisions for public comment and participation, with the                    
  strength of the existing Forest Practices Act, and with the                  
  strength of the consistency requirement for local land use                   
  plans, etc., he felt the bill is balanced and one that the                   
  committee can support.                                                       
  (CHAIRMAN WILLIAMS noted for the record that REPRESENTATIVE                  
  FINKELSTEIN had joined the committee at 8:28 a.m.)                           
  Number 175                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE BILL HUDSON stated several years ago, there                   
  was a discussion with representatives from Finland who were                  
  encouraging the state to adopt the standards used in that                    
  country.  He asked Senator Frank if he had access to that                    
  SENATOR FRANK responded he did not.  He has looked at ways                   
  to make this type of concept work in Alaska, consistent with                 
  existing Alaska laws and processes.  He mentioned there has                  
  been criticism of the FMA concept.  He stated he does not                    
  have personal knowledge about whether FMA's do or do not                     
  work.  He has been frustrated with the Alaska Department of                  
  Fish and Game (ADF&G) saying that just because this is the                   
  way Canada structures a FMA, does not mean that is the way a                 
  FMA will be structured in Alaska.  He thought two different                  
  types of systems or processes are being discussed, which do                  
  not have to be anything like processes elsewhere.                            
  REPRESENTATIVE JOE GREEN noted page 2, line 30 indicates "At                 
  least once each calendar year, the commissioner shall                        
  solicit proposals...", yet there is a zero fiscal note.  He                  
  wondered if this requirement will create more work for the                   
  SENATOR FRANK responded DNR does have a budget for public                    
  notices and he expects the public notice provision for                       
  solicitation will be nominal in cost and can be handled by                   
  their existing budget.                                                       
  REPRESENTATIVE GREEN noted page 2, line 16 indicates "Sales                  
  under 500,000 board feet and emergency sales are exempt..."                  
  and asked if the Forest Management Act precludes a series of                 
  small sales requests being excluded.                                         
  SENATOR FRANK answered no.  He said there is a one million                   
  board foot limit per region, so that will be avoided.  He                    
  added that most timber sales will remain on the five year                    
  schedule and an emergency sale provision for small timber                    
  sales will not be utilized as a way to avoid being on the                    
  five year schedule.                                                          
  REPRESENTATIVE GREEN clarified there is no provision in SB                   
  310 to allow an increase in timber sales in Southeast                        
  SENATOR FRANK responded most of Southeast Alaska is the                      
  Tongass National Forest and there is not much state land.                    
  Number 259                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE JOHN DAVIES recalled that Senator Frank had                   
  mentioned a biennial operating plan and a termination                        
  provision.  He asked Senator Frank to expand on what those                   
  will entail.                                                                 
  SENATOR FRANK replied the operating plan is not any                          
  different than an existing timber sale from the standpoint                   
  of compliance with the Forest Practices Act, which ADF&G is                  
  very involved in.  He said the biennial operating plan will                  
  give the department a formal process to control the FMA                      
  through the life of the agreement.  He added without an                      
  annual operating plan, there would still be a need for                       
  compliance with terms of the contract, the Forest Practices                  
  Act, and the sustained yield principles.  He explained the                   
  requirement for a biennial operating plan was included to                    
  provide additional protections for the public's concern.                     
  REPRESENTATIVE DAVIES asked if the biennial supervision is a                 
  review for compliance or does it involve an ongoing                          
  negotiation for adjustments of the contract.                                 
  SENATOR FRANK replied it is not specified.  He said the                      
  critical point is that in order to attract investment, there                 
  is a need to know that timber will be available and the                      
  price will be firm.                                                          
  Number 315                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE JEANNETTE JAMES stated she is excited about                   
  the possibility of having FMAs because there is potential                    
  for the long term use of soft and hard woods.  She expressed                 
  concern that the way the bill is written, public comment is                  
  solicited after the commissioner solicits for proposals and                  
  after industry makes an offer.  Her concern is that if she                   
  were an industry person, she would not want to make an offer                 
  subject to public comment.  She asked if it was possible to                  
  get public comment prior to sending out the RFP, so the                      
  specifics in the RFP would indicate the scope of what is                     
  available and what the conditions might be.  Therefore, when                 
  industry makes an offer, they know they will not have to                     
  deal with the public comment period and be required to make                  
  their information public information.                                        
  SENATOR FRANK stated the public comment period was discussed                 
  extensively and it was felt it will be best to have the                      
  public comment period after the department has selected a                    
  tentative proposal.  For example, if there are five                          
  proposals, it was felt the public should not be burdened                     
  with learning and understanding all of the proposals if one                  
  of the proposals did not meet the best interest findings of                  
  the department, etc.  He felt there needs to be confidence                   
  shown that the department will pick the best proposal, one                   
  which meets the public interest findings and then let the                    
  public comment on the one chosen.  However, there have been                  
  comments that if a proposal is already a tentatively                         
  selected agreement, the public will not really have a voice                  
  and the process will not really involve the public.                          
  Therefore, it was decided to allow the public to comment                     
  before the commissioner makes a tentative selection.                         
  SENATOR FRANK felt if a company is willing to submit a                       
  proposal, it has to be public and the company has to have                    
  public confidence to ultimately succeed.  If a proposal does                 
  not meet common sense, it does not appear it will protect                    
  the environment, and provide benefits to the community and                   
  the state, he did not feel it will go forward.  He thought                   
  there is a need to structure the proposal process in a way                   
  which allows the public to comment and allows the facts to                   
  be brought forward, enabling the community to make a                         
  reasoned judgement about whether the FMA will be good for                    
  the community.                                                               
  Number 417                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE JAMES clarified that Senator Frank does not                   
  believe a RFP could be specific enough to make it                            
  SENATOR FRANK stated if a point is reached where the                         
  department structures the agreement, the private sector's                    
  creativity cannot be taken advantage of and the approach can                 
  be very narrow.  He said if there is an allowance for                        
  multiple proposals to come in, there is a potential for a                    
  better proposal rather than having the department anticipate                 
  what a company's needs or desires may be.  He thought it was                 
  best to allow the department to solicit proposals, let the                   
  public comment, let the commissioner make a selection, and                   
  then let the public comment again.  He felt an open market                   
  type of approach is best.                                                    
  REPRESENTATIVE JAMES, coming from the position of the                        
  environmental community who will probably be the most vocal,                 
  commented if the public comment period is prior to the RFP                   
  as opposed to after a tentative selection is made, they                      
  might feel they are more a part of the process and not feel                  
  like their public comment is just an exercise and not very                   
  SENATOR FRANK pointed out there are land use plans, and                      
  current law requires that any forest management plan be                      
  consistent with the land use plan.  The public is involved                   
  with land use plans throughout the state and have a                          
  tremendous effect on how land use plans emerge.  He said if                  
  one were to look at the entire picture, there are at least                   
  three opportunities for public involvement--one in the                       
  overall land use plan, and two opportunities contained in SB                 
  Number 498                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE DAVID FINKELSTEIN stated the land use plans                   
  were completed in the past.  When those plans were developed                 
  and public input occurred, no one was envisioning FMAs.                      
  SENATOR FRANK responded in the Fairbanks area, a five year                   
  timber plan is being developed and in the latter years, the                  
  plan calls for an increase in the timber sales plan, which                   
  the public is commenting on.  He said Representative                         
  Finkelstein may have a point but Senator Frank knows that in                 
  the Tanana Valley Forest, that debate has occurred.  He felt                 
  there are adequate opportunities for public comment.                         
  REPRESENTATIVE FINKELSTEIN noted that Section 1 says the                     
  forest land use plan only has to consider the land use                       
  planning requirements where even a regional plan has been                    
  done.  He said in many parts of the state, the regional                      
  plan, which is the land use plan under AS 38.04.065(a), has                  
  been completed.  He stated in those cases, the forest land                   
  use plan would not even need to consider the land use                        
  planning requirements.                                                       
  SENATOR FRANK said Section 1 applies only to the small sale                  
  Number 556                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE FINKELSTEIN said the state forests were                       
  established because of the high public interest in the                       
  various types of uses, especially as compared to other                       
  public lands.  He felt the decision to commit the state                      
  forests to the primary purpose of commercial forest                          
  development gives people concern.  He asked Senator Frank if                 
  he would consider removing Section 5.                                        
  SENATOR FRANK replied Section 5 is a slight change.  He said                 
  managing a state forest and creating jobs from the forest is                 
  the primary purpose.  Many people liked establishing state                   
  forests because it prevented land disposals and ensured that                 
  other uses of the forest were maintained.  He felt the                       
  primary reason for establishing forest uses is to manage                     
  them over the long term in a manner which will allow                         
  commercial forestry.  He said the change in Section 5 to                     
  include the primary purpose, while at the same time                          
  perpetuating the personal, commercial, and other beneficial                  
  uses through multiple use management is a slight change.  He                 
  felt the change is an important part of SB 310.                              
  REPRESENTATIVE FINKELSTEIN pointed out the old purpose of                    
  the state forest was the personal, commercial, and other                     
  beneficial uses of resources through multiple-use                            
  Number 633                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE GREEN asked if owners of adjacent property                    
  have been involved in the discussion of SB 310.                              
  SENATOR FRANK replied not to his knowledge.  He said there                   
  are not too many big land owners in the state.  He noted                     
  there is specific language in the bill which requires the                    
  commissioner to not authorize a FMA if it will jeopardize an                 
  existing timber operator.  The desire is to protect existing                 
  operators and strengthen the ability of the state to offer                   
  sales which will be responsive to needs.                                     
  REPRESENTATIVE GREEN said in the past few years, there have                  
  been large areas of the state with beetle kills.  He asked                   
  if SB 310 will help utilize some of that dead timber.                        
  SENATOR FRANK replied it may.  He stated he is more                          
  interested in a long term situation.  He does not want                       
  temporary jobs which will create a problem when they are                     
  eliminated.  He felt the beetle kill situation is not                        
  something which is focused on in SB 310.                                     
  TAPE 94-53, SIDE A                                                           
  Number 000                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE DAVIES asked Senator Frank if he would                        
  support an addition to SB 310 which would limit the                          
  percentage of the allowable cut to be included in FMAs.  He                  
  supports the idea of long term contracts but is concerned if                 
  the entire allowable cut is tied up in long term contracts,                  
  the small operators will be eliminated.                                      
  SENATOR FRANK said he will consider it.  He does not want to                 
  constrain the department from doing what makes common sense.                 
  He felt specific language in SB 310 protects existing                        
  operations.  He expressed concern about unduly restricting                   
  the department.  The timber operators' lives depend on being                 
  able to have timber available for sale and will do their                     
  best to maintain their operations.  He is not concerned that                 
  the department will sell an amount of timber or create a FMA                 
  which will jeopardize small operators.                                       
  REPRESENTATIVE DAVIES asked Senator Frank to point out the                   
  provisions in SB 310 which protect the ongoing operators.                    
  SENATOR FRANK responded page 4, lines 22-25.                                 
  Number 045                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON felt SB 310 covers the compensation to                 
  the state to administer the agreement in a manner subject to                 
  the commissioner's determination.  He noted the ADF&G zero                   
  fiscal note states in the accompanying pages it will cost                    
  $109,000 per agreement.  He thought it is important for the                  
  state and SB 310 to articulate the need for those who are                    
  going to get involved in the forests, to also be responsible                 
  for these kind of necessary provisions.  Page 5, lines 15                    
  and 16 state "provisions regarding compensation, if required                 
  by the department, for state services provided to administer                 
  the agreement;".  He asked if it would be wise, as public                    
  policy, to eliminate the words "if required by the                           
  department" and therefore say a final proposed agreement                     
  must contain provisions regarding compensation.  He felt it                  
  will be a stronger statement that in the final agreement, it                 
  will not leave it up to the commissioner but make it a part                  
  of the actual agreement.                                                     
  SENATOR FRANK responded that change is not a problem but he                  
  felt the committee should work with the department.  He                      
  stated many people believe SB 310 is a giveaway.  He                         
  stressed SB 310 is not a giveaway but rather a management                    
  tool for the utilization of the state's resources.  He said                  
  benefits will be derived through money going to the general                  
  fund and noted that revenue will exceed costs.  He hoped                     
  that the committee does not put anything into the bill which                 
  people can litigate over.  He noted that eliminating the                     
  words probably will not do any damage but added the words                    
  are contained in the bill because the department wants                       
  flexibility on how the agreements are structured.                            
  REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON stated he will not suggest any action                  
  until the department is heard from.  He hoped that any final                 
  agreement not only provides for the tax coffers of the state                 
  but also provides for any costs which the state must incur                   
  in order to administer the agreement.                                        
  Number 106                                                                   
  Section 1 removes a redundancy, and will not apply to the                    
  FMAs proposed in Section 3 but instead will apply to the                     
  existing timber sale program.  The redundancy is where there                 
  is an existing land use plan or a forest management plan,                    
  the requirements in AS 38.04.065(b) do not have to be                        
  accommodated in a forest land use plan.  He said the                         
  Division of Forestry has to comply with two separate and                     
  distinct processes for every timber sale, each of which has                  
  public and agency comment.  He stated one of the processes                   
  is the AS 38.05.113 five year plan, which says that each                     
  sale has to be in a five year plan for at least the two                      
  prior years in order for that sale to go forward.  There is                  
  a public and agency process for that five year plan each                     
  year.  Therefore, every single timber sale is examined twice                 
  in that five year plan process.  He noted that separately,                   
  AS 38.05.112 requires a forest land use plan for every                       
  single timber sale.  Section 1 will change the                               
  considerations required under those forest land use plans in                 
  the instance where there is an existing forest management or                 
  land use plan.  He stressed Section 1 only modifies the                      
  forest land use plans for the existing timber sale program.                  
  Number 138                                                                   
  MR. BOUTIN said Section 2 allows an exemption for sales                      
  under 500,000 board feet from the five year plan process and                 
  also puts a cap of one million board feet for each region,                   
  which can be exempt from the five year plans.   He stated                    
  the Division of Forestry will continue to put every timber                   
  sale in the five year plans but occasionally there is an                     
  instance, such as a land use conversion to agriculture being                 
  proposed, where timber could not be brought to market                        
  because it had not been in the five year plan for the two                    
  prior years.                                                                 
  MR. BOUTIN stated Section 3 provides for the FMAs.  He said                  
  there is nothing in Section 3 exempting FMAs from the                        
  protections of the Forest Practices Act.  He noted those                     
  protections are stronger for state land than they are for                    
  any other kind of ownership.  FMAs will have to comply with                  
  those protections.  He said Section 5 is the prerogative of                  
  the legislature to define the uses and purposes for the                      
  state forests.  Section 6 adds an entailment in the                          
  management of the state forest.                                              
  MR. BOUTIN said DNR, ADF&G and the Department of Commerce                    
  addressed concerns in regard to the original version of SB                   
  310 and the committee substitute answers all of the                          
  concerns.  He stated DNR supports CSSB 310(RES).  He                         
  explained that FMAs are a tool which DNR does not now have.                  
  He noted that FMAs will not allow the harvest of timber                      
  which now cannot be harvested.  He said the constraint on                    
  harvest is sustained yield.  FMAs will not open up any                       
  acreage or stand of timber which is not available currently.                 
  If timber the department will now be selling would instead                   
  be sold under an FMA, it would be more cost effective to do                  
  so.  FMAs will allow pushing some of the costs, which the                    
  state now incurs, on to the contractor.  DNR will only use                   
  FMAs when they are cost effective on an existing timber                      
  sale.  Otherwise, the existing timber sale routes will be                    
  Number 230                                                                   
  MR. BOUTIN stated he has never seen such detail in a fiscal                  
  note as the fiscal note submitted for SB 310.  He has also                   
  never seen cost accounting done by the state.  He said the                   
  state uses cash accounting and calls it the modified accrual                 
  method.  He commented whenever he sees cost accounting he is                 
  somewhat skeptical.                                                          
  Number 245                                                                   
  CHAIRMAN WILLIAMS clarified the reason there is a zero                       
  fiscal note is because the department will be receiving more                 
  money from the timber sales than costs incurred and the                      
  department is already geared up to do this type of work.                     
  MR. BOUTIN responded there is no timber which can be sold                    
  under an FMA that cannot be sold currently.  For example,                    
  the timber in the Interior is in the state's five year plan                  
  presently, beginning in fiscal year 1997.  He said DNR is                    
  currently updating the Tanana Valley State Forest plan and                   
  it is not possible to prejudge that process or any other                     
  process.  He stated if this was fiscal year 1997 and the                     
  public processes, which will have taken place up to that                     
  time had occurred, and those timber sales were still in the                  
  five year plan, they would be offered, even absent FMAs.                     
  The difference is that a FMA will allow in-state processing                  
  in the best interest finding.  Currently, DNR does not have                  
  the ability to get up next to in-state processing in its                     
  timber sale program.                                                         
  Number 289                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE FINKELSTEIN agreed many of these areas could                  
  have been sold previously under existing laws, but the main                  
  reason they have not been is because of a lack of                            
  appropriation to fund the timber sales.  He said just                        
  because it was allowed in the past is not an argument that                   
  it does not need a fiscal note.  It would cost more money in                 
  the past to put them up for sale.  He stated he did not                      
  understand Mr. Boutin's logic.                                               
  MR. BOUTIN responded FMAs will not allow the sale of timber                  
  that cannot already be sold presently.  FMAs will be used in                 
  instances where it will be more cost effective to sell the                   
  timber through an FMA than through the existing timber sale                  
  program.   He stated the only area which has been identified                 
  to have a potential for a material increase in ongoing                       
  timber sales is the Interior timber--the 60 million feet of                  
  low-value hard wood--which can be offered for sale beginning                 
  in fiscal year 1997, since it is in the five year plan.  He                  
  said that timber could be offered for sale now.  It would                    
  cost more money to put a sale up which is going to be 60                     
  million feet.  He did not think FMAs come into the equation.                 
  FMAs would be a more cost effective way to put the 60                        
  million feet up for sale.                                                    
  Number 348                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE DAVIES stated he does not understand why FMAs                 
  are more cost effective than the existing timber sale                        
  MR. BOUTIN said if FMAs were overwhelmingly cost effective,                  
  the fiscal note would have reflected the savings in FMAs,                    
  Section 1, and Section 2.  He stated many of the timber sale                 
  lay out responsibilities which DNR currently has, could be                   
  passed on to the contractor, particularly in the instances                   
  of the aspen stands.                                                         
  REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON clarified the difference involves                      
  giving DNR the opportunity to create a greater value from                    
  the same trees, as opposed to simply making a stand of trees                 
  available for cutting and shipping out.  SB 310 will give                    
  DNR the ability to make the terms and conditions more than                   
  just a matter of price per log, but rather a price on an                     
  overall basis to the economy of the region and the state, by                 
  virtue of inducing someone to invest because of the long                     
  term commitment of trees.                                                    
  MR. BOUTIN said that is correct.  He stated because of the                   
  Southcentral Timber Development v. The State of Alaska, the                  
  state does not now have a way to offer a timber sale, for                    
  example, on the Haines State Forest, requiring in-state                      
  processing.  He explained the Haines State Forest goes to                    
  the highest bidder and that bidder exports the logs.  FMAs                   
  will enable in-state processing.                                             
  REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON clarified SB 310 is sort of the Alaska                 
  hire provision of the state's timber operations.                             
  REPRESENTATIVE DAVIES thought the requirement for in-state                   
  processing violates interstate commerce law and the only way                 
  that requirement can be avoided is through an exemption from                 
  Congress to the interstate commerce provisions.                              
  MR. BOUTIN said the Department of Law advised that the best                  
  interest finding accommodating the FMAs can include a clear                  
  finding that there will be an in-state processing facility                   
  constructed.  That finding would not run afoul of                            
  Southcentral Timber Development v. The State of Alaska.  He                  
  felt no one will take the risk of not building that plant                    
  when the finding said the plant would be built.  Clearly,                    
  the state would have a way to back out of the agreement if                   
  the finding had included in-state processing and the                         
  contractor called it off and exported the logs.                              
  Number 442                                                                   
  RESTORATION, ADF&G, stated she is available for questions.                   
  CHAIRMAN WILLIAMS reminded everyone that the long term                       
  timber contract in the Tongass had been cancelled.  He said                  
  the ADF&G fiscal note on SB 310 indicates a need for more                    
  people.  He wondered what effect that cancellation will have                 
  on ADF&G and asked whether or not the Division of Habitat is                 
  ready to cut their staff in half because of that                             
  MS. FRITTS responded that possibility has not been                           
  discussed.  She felt the important point to realize is that                  
  in the current fiscal year, the Southeast Regional office                    
  took a substantial cut and there has been a struggle to                      
  complete all of the work needing to be done.  She thought                    
  there may be a lot of work remaining.                                        
  CHAIRMAN WILLIAMS said much of that work will be eliminated                  
  because of the timber contract cancellation.                                 
  MS. FRITTS replied ADF&G has not had the opportunity to                      
  discuss the impact of the cancellation.  She reiterated                      
  ADF&G has made many staff cuts in Southeast Alaska,                          
  including the biologist position in Petersburg.  Therefore,                  
  much of the work being done there for things other than                      
  forest service planning, such as fish habitat permits for                    
  stream crossings, working with communities, etc., have been                  
  cut back.  She does not expect moving biologists from                        
  Southeast to another area because of the cancellation.                       
  Number 522                                                                   
  GERON BRUCE, LEGISLATIVE LIAISON, ADF&G, said ADF&G did work                 
  with DNR and the Department of Commerce on SB 310.                           
  Significant changes have been made to SB 310 which the                       
  department appreciates including making the FMAs consistent                  
  with state land use plans and the improvements in the public                 
  process.  He stated there have been concerns expressed about                 
  the approach taken on the ADF&G fiscal note.  He said the                    
  department looked at the existing FMAs in North America and                  
  the fiscal note was based on those agreements.                               
  MR. BRUCE stated earlier comments indicated the possibility                  
  that FMAs, which will take place under SB 310, will not                      
  resemble those other North America agreements.  He stressed                  
  looking at what has occurred to date is the best information                 
  available on what a FMA will look like.  The fiscal note was                 
  constructed to accurately reflect what the department has                    
  seen happen.  He stressed if there was a different kind of                   
  an arrangement, such as smaller sales, etc., the fiscal note                 
  would be impacted.  He pointed out that until a FMA is                       
  signed and is in place, the department will not know what                    
  the size and scope is and the department's work load will                    
  Number 560                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE FINKELSTEIN clarified both ADF&G and DNR                      
  conclude that for any of the activities in SB 310 or even                    
  activities under existing law, there will be a need for more                 
  biologists and foresters.  The ADF&G fiscal note assumes                     
  there will be some activity as a result of SB 310 and the                    
  DNR fiscal note assumes there will not be.                                   
  MS. FRITTS responded that is a fair assessment.                              
  REPRESENTATIVE DAVIES stated ADF&G has a zero fiscal note                    
  but on the front page there are several asterisks and the                    
  analysis shows a $103,000 cost per agreement.  He wondered                   
  why those numbers do not appear on the front of the fiscal                   
  note.  He also pointed out that a similar fiscal note                        
  prepared in 1989 for HB 205 stated HB 205 would allow state                  
  forest lands, which are currently required to be managed for                 
  multiple use and classified under the state land planning                    
  process to be administratively designated for forestry as a                  
  primary use by the commissioner of DNR and transferred to a                  
  timber company for long term management.  He felt that bill                  
  was very similar to SB 310, yet ADF&G submitted a $205,000                   
  figure at that time and the amount appeared on the front of                  
  the fiscal note.                                                             
  MR. BRUCE responded ADF&G does not know what the actual                      
  costs will be for a FMA in Alaska.  The costs estimated on                   
  the fiscal note are based on similar agreements which have                   
  occurred in other places.  He agreed FMAs in Alaska may be                   
  different but the costs have to be speculative until a FMA                   
  is in place.                                                                 
  REPRESENTATIVE DAVIES asked if there would have been the                     
  same uncertainty in 1989.                                                    
  MR. BRUCE replied he cannot speak to the assumptions which                   
  went into the fiscal note in 1989 but that was probably the                  
  best estimate at that time.  Since then, ADF&G's assumptions                 
  and numbers have changed.  He felt that reflects the                         
  uncertainty when the department is attempting to look ahead                  
  and forecast what the costs might be for a project which                     
  does not exist yet.  ADF&G does feel that if there is                        
  activity under SB 310, there will be a need for an increase                  
  in staffing to accommodate and fulfill the department's                      
  statutory requirements.  Again, ADF&G will not know what                     
  that amount will be until the size and scope of the                          
  agreement is known.                                                          
  REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON requested Ms. Fritts to submit a                       
  profile of the Division of Habitat and Restoration to                        
  committee members at some point.  He also asked her to                       
  submit comments on what the impact of the Tongass                            
  cancellation will be to the division.                                        
  TAPE 94-54, SIDE A                                                           
  Number 000                                                                   
  CHAIRMAN WILLIAMS stated there will not be enough time to                    
  take much of the public testimony but added SB 310 will be                   
  scheduled again on Wednesday, April 20 and public testimony                  
  will be taken at that time.                                                  
  Number 030                                                                   
  and his son have owned and operated a sawmill and logging                    
  operation for 24 years.  He has worked in the timber                         
  industry for 53 years.  He expressed support of the concept                  
  of FMAs with some reservations.  He hoped the wording in SB                  
  310 will require FMAs to be in predominantly hardwood                        
  stands.  Currently, there are sawmills in the Fairbanks area                 
  that can process all of the spruce which can be sold from                    
  the Tanana Valley State Forest and keep it on an even flow                   
  sustained yield basis.  If the FMAs were on hardwoods, they                  
  would have to be processed in-state, since the hardwoods are                 
  of too low a quality to export as raw logs.                                  
  MR. PAGH said there were two truckloads of birch logs hand                   
  picked and shipped to Washington State to be processed.  He                  
  followed one load to Northwest Hardwoods and talked to the                   
  manager.  He went out into the plant and watched the                         
  processing of logs into lumber and then watched the grading                  
  of lumber.  Out of those hand picked logs, 16 percent made                   
  furniture grade lumber.  The rest of it was pallet material.                 
  He stressed had those logs been cut into lumber in Alaska,                   
  the shipping of the pallet material would have cost more                     
  than the lumber was worth.                                                   
  MR. PAGH pointed out there are a few small operations in                     
  Fairbanks using a very small amount of hardwoods, but they                   
  have to be very selective in choosing the trees they can                     
  use.  It is impossible to tell if a standing tree is sound                   
  enough to use, so usually many trees have to be cut before                   
  finding one which can be used.  He explained that most of                    
  the birch cut is used for firewood.  He stressed aspen                       
  cannot even be given away.                                                   
  Number 051                                                                   
  MR. PAGH stated if there was a pulp mill or chipboard plant,                 
  the small operators could sort out what they could use and                   
  sell the rest to the pulp or chipwood plant.  It would also                  
  give the sawmills in the area a place to dispose of tops and                 
  all other cull logs.  He said if FMAs were for spruce, there                 
  is no doubt the high grade logs would be exported.  The                      
  Seward mill is shutting down because they can make 50                        
  percent more selling the logs for export than they can                       
  milling them.  The Seward mill is a very modern state of the                 
  art sawmill.  It was built a few years ago at the cost of                    
  $20 million.  He pointed out that a pulp or chipboard plant                  
  would cost as much or more, so there is a need to have a                     
  long enough contract to amortize the investment.                             
  MR. PAGH said the Tanana Valley State Forest is about 1.8                    
  million acres and if an average of 14,400 acres per year                     
  were cut, it would take 125 years to cut the 1.8 million                     
  acres.  The second crop would then be ready to cut.  He                      
  noted when mentioning 125 years, he is talking about spruce,                 
  as the hardwoods should be cut at 60 to 80 years or less.                    
  He stressed at the present time, less than 1,000 acres a                     
  year are being cut.                                                          
  Number 066                                                                   
  MR. PAGH stated there are many young people who have dropped                 
  out of school and it is very hard for them to find a job                     
  they can make a living at.  Many of them turn to crime.  He                  
  said working at logging does not take a college degree, so                   
  many of these young people could be taken off the streets                    
  and given good paying jobs.  He noted that jobs in logging                   
  would be 11 months a year and jobs in the processing plants                  
  would be year-round.  Much has been said about tourists not                  
  wanting to come to Alaska and see clearcuts.  He pointed out                 
  that most tourists are his age or older and they come from a                 
  generation that either had to work or go hungry.  Therefore,                 
  he did not think those people would begrudge Alaska the                      
  opportunity to make a living.                                                
  MR. PAGH told committee members that most clearcuts grow up                  
  with grass and brush in a couple of years and the most                       
  telltale marks are the boundaries which are relatively                       
  straight.  Clearcuts generate good browse for animals.  Fish                 
  and game managers like to see fires left to burn to create                   
  browse but he felt that is a terrible waste of the state's                   
  natural resources.                                                           
  MR. PAGH stated logging requires access, so road systems are                 
  funded by an allowance from timber sales.  The roads are                     
  then used by all for recreation, firewood gathering, and in                  
  some cases, fire fighting.  He pointed out there are                         
  hundreds of lightening fires a year.  Unaccessible fires                     
  usually are left to burn if they do not endanger someone's                   
  home.  The timber is usually left to rot.  He said the Rosie                 
  Creek burn was salvaged because it had access.  Over 20                      
  million board feet was salvaged.  He stressed under today's                  
  regulations written by environmentalists, the salvage of                     
  such timber before it spoils is impossible, even if it does                  
  have access.  He mentioned the Kenai Peninsula bug killed                    
  timber and said if fire destroys the timber,                                 
  environmentalists feel it is mother nature's way but if that                 
  same timber is logged and used to build homes, they think it                 
  is terrible.                                                                 
  Number 089                                                                   
  MR. PAGH said Alaska is a rich state in natural resources,                   
  if the citizens are allowed to use the resources wisely as                   
  was intended under the Statehood Act.  He stated 8/10 of 1                   
  percent of the 1.8 million acres per year is all that is                     
  required to support a viable forest industry in the                          
  Interior.  He stressed there are things in SB 310 which need                 
  to be changed if there is to be any timber industry at all.                  
  There are millions of acres in the state that cannot be                      
  logged.  He felt 1.8 million acres is very little to ask                     
  for.  He noted the amount of land not available for timber                   
  cutting:  52 million acres of National Parks; 77 million                     
  acres of National Wildlife Refuge; 22 million acres of                       
  National Forests; 56 million acres of National Wilderness.                   
  He added the state has 116 state parks.  He thought the                      
  environmentalists and the people who want to recreate have                   
  enough places to go.                                                         
  REPRESENTATIVE CON BUNDE clarified Mr. Pagh would like to                    
  have the FMAs limited to hardwoods, which can be processed                   
  MR. PAGH responded that is correct.  He stated because                       
  hardwood logs are of such low quality, they cannot be                        
  exported raw.                                                                
  REPRESENTATIVE BUNDE clarified the processing will include a                 
  small amount of furniture and lumber, and the rest will be                   
  MR. PAGH said no.  He stated it is not feasible to have a                    
  furniture factory.                                                           
  REPRESENTATIVE BUNDE asked what the local processing will                    
  consist of.                                                                  
  MR. PAGH responded chips or something of that nature.                        
  REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON requested a copy of Mr. Pagh's                         
  presentation.  He felt that Mr. Pagh had determined some                     
  practical, astute and common sense approaches to the problem                 
  being confronted.                                                            
  Number 153                                                                   
  MARICKE BARNES, KETCHIKAN, testified via teleconference and                  
  expressed support of SB 310.  She said (indiscernible)                       
  decision by the Clinton Administration to terminate the                      
  Alaska Pulp Corporation's long term contract.  She stressed                  
  long term forest management on the Tongass has provided                      
  stable, year-round family wage jobs.  Now, hundreds of                       
  families' jobs and their welfare are at stake.  She felt the                 
  decision clearly exhibits why the state must intensively                     
  manage those lands of which it has control.  The state                       
  cannot count on the federal government to act in the best                    
  interest of Alaskans.                                                        
  MS. BARNES stated she just graduated from college and feels                  
  lucky to be able to come home to establish her career in                     
  Alaska.  However, unless the state passes legislation such                   
  as SB 310, there will not be stable economic development in                  
  her community and people like her will not be able to return                 
  home to find work.  SB 310 is good public policy, good                       
  forest management and provides jobs as well as economic                      
  growth.  She urged the committee to pass SB 310 for the                      
  young people of the state who want to work at home.                          
  Number 174                                                                   
  KETCHIKAN, testified via teleconference and expressed                        
  support of SB 310.  He stressed SB 310 is an important piece                 
  of legislation which will allow:  public participation;                      
  organized job, industry, and economic growth; full                           
  protection of the Forest Practices Act for all resources                     
  including important stream buffers; and protection of forest                 
  health values from insect and disease epidemics.  He stated                  
  SB 310 is good public policy which deserves the committee's                  
  MR. REINHART said AFA was pleased that ADF&G gave SB 310 a                   
  zero fiscal note and felt it was a proper, prudent, and                      
  professional decision.  However, the additional three pages                  
  of dialogue associated with the fiscal note are misleading,                  
  not productive to the debate nor the proper role of the                      
  agency.  He pointed out the document is full of buzz words                   
  intended to invoke misconceptions in the minds of the                        
  general public.  AFA feels the words such as "...the promise                 
  of cheap, long-term timber supplies", "...very large                         
  companies...", and "...large scale and rapidity of                           
  cutting..." should not be in a fiscal note and are                           
  MR. REINHART stated no one in the forest industry or those                   
  supporting SB 310 are asking for a hand out or harvesting                    
  beyond sustainable levels.  All that is requested and needed                 
  is a reliable, stable, certain and economically feasible                     
  supply of timber.  AFA is very concerned about                               
  unsubstantiated accusations to the contrary.  He stressed                    
  that the timber contract cancellation in Sitka only proves                   
  again that the state of Alaska needs to manage its land for                  
  people and communities and not rely on the federal                           
  government to do so.  AFA fully supports SB 310 and                          
  respectfully requests the committee's support.                               
  Number 212                                                                   
  ROBERT DENNEY, TALKEETNA, testified via teleconference and                   
  expressed opposition to SB 310.                                              
  ROBERTA SHELDON, TALKEETNA, testified via teleconference and                 
  stated she is a lifelong Alaskan and a 30 year resident of                   
  Talkeetna.  She said Talkeetna's economy is dependent on the                 
  tourist and recreational industry.  Wild and scenic viewings                 
  of the state's natural resources in their natural state are                  
  the big drawing card there.  She noted her business is                       
  dependent on those values and natural resources.  She urged                  
  committee members to see SB 310 for what it is--an                           
  egocentric and greedy effort by a special interest group to                  
  dominate and profit from a resource which belongs to all of                  
  the people of Alaska.  She felt timber is a public resource,                 
  not one to be monopolized by a special interest group.                       
  MS. SHELDON said when SB 310 went through the Senate, there                  
  was overwhelming public opposition to it.  This bill                         
  provides for FMAs which guarantee long term, locked in                       
  contracts that provide for timber harvesting as the primary                  
  use, with other vital uses being secondary.  She felt those                  
  priorities are outrageous.  She stated her business depends                  
  on the wilderness and recreational values present in the                     
  Susitna River valley.  She pointed out Alaska is the last                    
  wild land in America and people are coming to the state by                   
  the thousands because there is nothing wild left outside and                 
  because the environment and natural resources have been                      
  altered so much outside.  She urged committee members not to                 
  make the same mistakes.  She noted times have changed and                    
  more jobs are developing from natural resources in their                     
  natural state.                                                               
  MS. SHELDON requested committee members to not allow the                     
  special interest timber industry have a special privilege                    
  with a resource that belongs to all of the people in the                     
  state.  She urged committee members to oppose SB 310.                        
  Number 259                                                                   
  ED SHARP, LAKE CREEK LODGE, testified via teleconference and                 
  stated he is in the tourism business and has almost                          
  everything he owns invested in the business.  He expressed                   
  opposition to SB 310.  He said the state cannot allow forest                 
  logging companies to totally dominate the land.  There is                    
  lots of small scale logging occurring in his area.  He                       
  stressed large scale logging is not compatible with the uses                 
  of the Susitna River Valley that most people see as the                      
  primary use.  He noted there are tourists coming from all                    
  over the world to see what is left in the state.  Alaska is                  
  the last place in the country that people can come and have                  
  a little bit of the real outdoors to experience.  He urged                   
  committee members to oppose SB 310.                                          
  MR. SHARP stressed timber is a renewable resource which will                 
  go on forever if it is left totally unmolested.  He said for                 
  the past ten years he has been in business, the public has                   
  been trying to get that point across.  He stressed there has                 
  been a lot of testimony confirming what he is saying.  He                    
  felt the legislature wants to create a few high paying jobs.                 
  He stated there is a need to realize that there are hundreds                 
  of smaller operations, which account for many times more                     
  revenue to the state, than what will be created with the                     
  logging jobs.  On the long term, the tourism industry is                     
  going to be dead if logging is allowed as the primary use of                 
  the land.                                                                    
  CHAIRMAN WILLIAMS announced SB 310 will be heard again on                    
  Wednesday, April 20.  He said the committee will meet at                     
  8:15 a.m. on Monday, April 18 to hear SB 293.                                
  There being no further business to come before the House                     
  Resources Committee, Chairman Williams adjourned the meeting                 
  at 10:18 a.m.                                                                

Document Name Date/Time Subjects