Legislature(1995 - 1996)

05/01/1995 09:03 AM RES

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
txt
               HOUSE RESOURCES STANDING COMMITTEE                              
                          May 1, 1995                                          
                           9:03 a.m.                                           
                                                                               
                                                                               
 MEMBERS PRESENT                                                               
                                                                               
 Representative Joe Green, Co-Chairman                                         
 Representative Bill Williams, Co-Chairman                                     
 Representative Scott Ogan, Vice Chairman                                      
 Representative Alan Austerman                                                 
 Representative John Davies                                                    
 Representative Pete Kott                                                      
 Representative Irene Nicholia                                                 
                                                                               
 MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                
                                                                               
 Representative Ramona Barnes                                                  
 Representative Eileen MacLean                                                 
                                                                               
 COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                            
                                                                               
 CSSB 16(FIN) am:  "An Act relating to the University of Alaska and            
                   university land, authorizing the University of              
                   Alaska to select additional state public domain             
                   land, and defining net income from the University           
                   of Alaska's endowment trust fund as 'university             
                   receipts' subject to prior legislative                      
                   appropriation."                                             
                                                                               
                   HEARD AND HELD                                              
                                                                               
 HB 91:            "An Act amending the area within designated                 
                   marine park units of the Alaska state park                  
                   system, and adding marine park units to the                 
                   Alaska state park system."                                  
                                                                               
                   CSHB 91(RES) PASSED OUT OF COMMITTEE                        
                                                                               
 WITNESS REGISTER                                                              
                                                                               
 JOHN SHIVELY, Commissioner                                                    
 Department of Natural Resources                                               
 400 Willoughby Avenue                                                         
 Juneau, AK   99801                                                            
 Phone:  465-2400                                                              
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Opposed SB 16                                            
                                                                               
 MARTIN EPSTEIN, Director                                                      
 Land Management                                                               
 University of Alaska                                                          
 3890 University Lane                                                          
 Anchorage, AK   99508                                                         
 Phone:  786-7766                                                              
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Answered questions regarding SB 16                       
                                                                               
 WENDY REDMAN, Vice President                                                  
 University of Alaska                                                          
 3rd Floor Signers' Hall                                                       
 Fairbanks, AK   99774                                                         
 Phone:  474-7211                                                              
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Supported SB 16 and answered questions                   
      regarding SB 16                                                          
                                                                               
 RON SWANSON, Director                                                         
 Division of Land                                                              
 Department of Natural Resources                                               
 3601 C Street, Ste. 1122                                                      
 Anchorage, AK   99503                                                         
 Phone:  762-2692                                                              
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Answered questions regarding SB 16                       
                                                                               
 KATTARYNA BENNETT, House Researcher                                           
   to Representative Caren Robinson                                            
 Alaska State Legislature                                                      
 State Capitol, Room 114                                                       
 Juneau, AK   99801                                                            
 Phone:  465-3744                                                              
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Prime Sponsor HB 91                                      
                                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE CAREN ROBINSON                                                 
 Alaska State Legislature                                                      
 State Capitol, Room 114                                                       
 Juneau, AK   99801                                                            
 Phone:  465-3744                                                              
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Prime Sponsor HB 91                                      
                                                                               
 BILL GARRY, Superintendent                                                    
 Southeast Area                                                                
 Division of Parks & Outdoor Recreation                                        
 Department of Natural Resources                                               
 400 Willoughby Avenue                                                         
 Juneau, AK   99801                                                            
 Phone:  465-4563                                                              
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Answered questions regarding HB 91                       
                                                                               
 TED MERRELL                                                                   
 3240 Fritz Cove Road                                                          
 Juneau, AK   99801                                                            
 Phone:  789-7876                                                              
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Supported HB 91                                          
                                                                               
 GAIL BILLS                                                                    
 536 Park Street, Apt. A                                                       
 Juneau, AK   99801                                                            
 Phone:  586-9566                                                              
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Supported HB 91                                          
                                                                               
 CRISTI HERREN, Representative                                                 
 Juneau State Parks Advisory Board                                             
 477 W. 11th Street                                                            
 Juneau, AK   99801                                                            
 Phone:  586-9857                                                              
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Supported HB 91                                          
                                                                               
 PREVIOUS ACTION                                                               
                                                                               
 BILL:  SB 16                                                                
 SHORT TITLE: INCREASE LAND GRANT TO UNIV. OF ALASKA                           
 SPONSOR(S): SENATOR(S) FRANK, Kelly, Sharp, Rieger, Miller;                   
 REPRESENTATIVE(S)                                                             
 Williams                                                                      
                                                                               
 JRN-DATE     JRN-PG                  ACTION                                   
 01/06/95        17    (S)   PREFILE RELEASED - 1/6/95                         
 01/16/95        17    (S)   READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRAL(S)                 
 01/16/95        17    (S)   CRA, RES, FIN                                     
 01/20/95        60    (S)   COSPONSOR(S):  RIEGER                             
 02/15/95              (S)   CRA AT 01:30 PM BUTROVICH ROOM 205                
 02/20/95              (S)   CRA AT 01:30 PM BUTROVICH ROOM 205                
 02/20/95              (S)   MINUTE(CRA)                                       
 02/22/95       365    (S)   CRA RPT  CS  2DP 3NR      SAME TITLE              
 02/22/95       366    (S)   FISCAL NOTES (F&G, DNR, UA)                       
 02/22/95       366    (S)   ZERO FISCAL NOTES (REV-2)                         
 03/03/95              (S)   RES AT 03:30 PM BUTROVICH ROOM 205                
 03/10/95              (S)   RES AT 03:30 PM BUTROVICH ROOM 205                
 03/10/95              (S)   MINUTE(RES)                                       
 03/17/95              (S)   RES AT 03:30 PM BUTROVICH ROOM 205                
 03/17/95              (S)   MINUTE(RES)                                       
 03/20/95       695    (S)   RES RPT  3DP 1DNP 1NR  (CRA)CS                    
 03/20/95       696    (S)   FN (DNR)                                          
 03/20/95       696    (S)   PREVIOUS FNS (F&G, DNR, UA)                       
 03/20/95       696    (S)   ZERO FNS (REV-2)                                  
 03/23/95              (S)   FIN AT 09:00 AM SENATE FINANCE 532                
 03/23/95              (S)   MINUTE(FIN)                                       
 03/27/95       788    (S)   FIN RPT  CS  3DP 1DNP 2NR   SAME TITLE            
 03/27/95       789    (S)   FNS TO CS (DNR, F&G)                              
 03/27/95       789    (S)   ZERO FN (REV)                                     
 03/27/95       789    (S)   PREVIOUS FNS (UA, DNR)                            
 03/27/95              (S)   FIN AT 09:00 AM SENATE FINANCE 532                
 03/28/95              (S)   RLS AT 12:20 PM FAHRENKAMP ROOM 203               
 03/28/95              (S)   MINUTE(RLS)                                       
 04/10/95       956    (S)   RULES TO CALENDAR  4/10/95                        
 04/10/95       958    (S)   READ THE SECOND TIME                              
 04/10/95       958    (S)   FIN  CS ADOPTED UNAN CONSENT                      
 04/10/95       958    (S)   AM NO  1     ADOPTED UNAN CONSENT                 
 04/10/95       958    (S)   ADVANCED TO THIRD READING UNAN CONSENT            
 04/10/95       958    (S)   READ THE THIRD TIME  CSSB 16(FIN) AM              
 04/10/95       958    (S)   COSPONSOR:  MILLER                                
 04/10/95       959    (S)   (S) ADOPTED ZHAROFF LETTER OF INTENT              
 04/10/95       959    (S)   PASSED Y11 N9                                     
 04/10/95       959    (S)   ADAMS  NOTICE OF RECONSIDERATION                  
 04/11/95       983    (S)   RECONSIDERATION NOT TAKEN UP                      
 04/11/95       984    (S)   TRANSMITTED TO (H)                                
 04/12/95      1276    (H)   READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRAL(S)                 
 04/12/95      1277    (H)   CRA, RESOURCES, FINANCE                           
 04/25/95              (H)   CRA AT 01:00 PM CAPITOL 124                       
 04/26/95      1557    (H)   CRA REFERRAL WAIVED                               
 04/27/95              (H)   RES AT 04:00 PM CAPITOL 124                       
 04/27/95              (H)   MINUTE(RES)                                       
 04/28/95              (H)   RES AT 05:00 PM CAPITOL 124                       
 04/28/95              (H)   MINUTE(RES)                                       
 05/01/95              (H)   RES AT 08:00 AM CAPITOL 124                       
                                                                               
 BILL:  HB 91                                                                
 SHORT TITLE: MARINE PARKS ADDITIONS/CHANGES                                   
 SPONSOR(S): REPRESENTATIVE(S) ROBINSON, Elton                                 
                                                                               
 JRN-DATE     JRN-PG                  ACTION                                   
 01/17/95        52    (H)   READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRAL(S)                 
 01/17/95        52    (H)   TRA, STA, RES, FIN                                
 03/29/95              (H)   TRA AT 01:00 PM CAPITOL 17                        
 03/30/95       993    (H)   TRA RPT 4NR                                       
 03/30/95       993    (H)   NR: MACLEAN, WILLIAMS, BRICE, G.DAVIS             
 03/30/95       993    (H)   ZERO FISCAL NOTE (DNR)                            
 04/13/95      1315    (H)   STA RPT  3DP 3NR                                  
 04/13/95      1315    (H)   DP: JAMES, WILLIS, ROBINSON                       
 04/13/95      1315    (H)   NR: PORTER, GREEN, OGAN                           
 04/13/95      1315    (H)   ZERO FISCAL NOTE (DNR) 3/30/95                    
 04/13/95              (H)   STA AT 08:00 AM CAPITOL 102                       
 04/13/95              (H)   MINUTE(STA)                                       
 04/28/95              (H)   RES AT 08:00 AM CAPITOL 124                       
 04/28/95              (H)   MINUTE(RES)                                       
 05/01/95              (H)   RES AT 08:00 AM CAPITOL 124                       
                                                                               
                                                                               
 ACTION NARRATIVE                                                              
                                                                               
 TAPE 95-61, SIDE A                                                            
 Number 000                                                                    
                                                                               
 The House Resources Committee was called to order by Co-Chairman              
 Joe Green at 9:03 a.m.  Members present at the call to order were             
 Representatives Green, Williams, Ogan, Austerman, and Kott.                   
 Members absent were Representatives Barnes, Davies, MacLean, and              
 Nicholia.                                                                     
 SB 16 - INCREASE LAND GRANT TO UNIVERSITY OF ALASKA                         
 JOHN SHIVELY, COMMISSIONER, DEPARTMENT OF NATURAL RESOURCES (DNR),            
 said the department does not support SB 16.  He stated the                    
 department does not believe it makes good public policy to transfer           
 one million acres of state land to the university.  He noted at               
 best some kind of short-term incremental benefit for the state will           
 be received.  The university has argued if they receive the land,             
 there are less restrictions on how they develop the land and they             
 can develop it faster.  He observed that is an accurate argument,             
 although those processes are all under review by the                          
 administration, as to whether or not the state's processes are too            
 complex.                                                                      
                                                                               
 MR. SHIVELY stated he does not believe there is currently a huge              
 bonanza out there that will make a big dent in the state's budget             
 by getting lands out to development one year, two years or even               
 five years quicker.  He felt there are other opportunities for the            
 university.  Currently, many people think the federal government              
 has more land than it needs and in Alaska, the federal government             
 is the largest landowner.  He stated the department has offered               
 support to the university to go back to discuss federal lands with            
 Congress and the administration.                                              
                                                                               
 MR. SHIVELY said even if the university pays DNR to do the work               
 necessary to transfer the land, it is extra work and an extra cost            
 to be taken out of the incremental benefit.  He noted the fact that           
 SB 16 is a 13 page bill indicates the complexity the state is                 
 facing in trying to get something that makes sense.  He felt the              
 bill will further complicate things and does not give the state the           
 benefit it needs at this point.                                               
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN JOE GREEN asked why the first course would not be to              
 try and get the land the university needs from the federal                    
 government.                                                                   
                                                                               
 MR. SHIVELY responded he is not even sure where the one million               
 acres figure came from.  He said his understanding is it is just a            
 figure that was determined to give the university a land base from            
 which they can generate income in order to offset university                  
 expenses.  He noted there is no magic to the number.  He pointed              
 out at the time of statehood, there was no guarantee as to how much           
 land the university would get.                                                
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN BILL WILLIAMS felt Mr. Shively was off base in regard             
 to his comments about the benefits that would be received and the             
 costs it would take to get the land to the university.  He said the           
 state has 105 million acres of land and is in a very tight budget             
 crunch presently.  He stated it is a proven fact, at least in                 
 regard to the Native corporations, the lands were made to work.               
 CO-CHAIRMAN WILLIAMS felt if the university got the land, they                
 would make it work and the amount of money the university would               
 receive by managing it would be received faster since they are in             
 the private sector.  He said anytime one has to go through a                  
 process like the state has to go through in managing its lands...if           
 it takes five years to get a piece of legislation out or five years           
 to get a timber sale out, the marketplace has been lost.  He found            
 Mr. Shively's comments disturbing.                                            
                                                                               
 MR. SHIVELY stated if SB 16 passes, the university will not have              
 one million acres of land.  Rather, they will have the right to               
 negotiate with the state to get one million acres of land.  He said           
 that land would take some time to transfer.  He pointed out the               
 single, most viable resource the state has to sell is timber.  The            
 potential for oil and gas leasing for the university is not great             
 and mining would not give them much ready revenue.  He noted the              
 university will still have to manage any timber given to them under           
 the sustained yield requirement, which is a requirement the Native            
 corporations do not have.                                                     
                                                                               
 MR. SHIVELY said it is not clear whether or not the university, if            
 they do not manage their resources responsibly, will also have the            
 same requirements the state does, either through the Board of                 
 Regents or the legislature, since they are a public body.  He                 
 stated there is no question the university can get things out                 
 faster than the department can but it is an incremental time value            
 to the state and may be responsive to the timber market.  He                  
 reiterated the university is not going to have the land July 1, and           
 probably will not have it by July 1, 1996, if SB 16 is passed.                
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN WILLIAMS noted that Mr. Shively had been a land manager           
 for quite some time in the Native community and knows the Native              
 community has not received all of its 44 million acres of land.  He           
 said when that land is received, it is known the land will not                
 start working immediately.  He stated it takes a lot of management            
 time to get that land working in the right manner.  He felt if the            
 university at least got the nod they were going to get the land,              
 they would start managing it.                                                 
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN WILLIAMS said the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act             
 (ANCSA) was passed in 1971.  He stated the village corporation he             
 is from still has not received all of its conveyances but is                  
 planning for it and has had the time to plan for it.                          
                                                                               
 Number 242                                                                    
                                                                               
 MR. SHIVELY stated the Native corporations, even though they have             
 not received all of their entitlement, have a good idea where that            
 entitlement is going to come from.  The university, on the other              
 hand, will be selecting out of 83 million acres and it is not as              
 easy for them to plan exactly what lands they are going to get,               
 whether it will be timber, minerals, or lands used for individual             
 land disposals.  He stressed he is not saying there would be no               
 benefit to the state.  He is not sure the incremental benefit the             
 state will get is worth the process required to determine where the           
 university gets their one million acres of land, taking the                   
 department's attention away from other things.                                
                                                                               
 MR. SHIVELY said the last time it was a contentious issue as to               
 which lands the university was going to get.  He noted the state              
 just went through one major distribution of state lands with the              
 mental health trust issue, which still is not completed.  He                  
 thought the mental health trust land disposal will take at least              
 two more years.                                                               
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN WILLIAMS felt the university understands the processing           
 required.  He said this land grant will provide jobs and noted the            
 Governor has talked about families and jobs over and over.                    
                                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE PETE KOTT asked what kind of process will be                   
 involved in selecting the one million acres.                                  
                                                                               
 Number 283                                                                    
                                                                               
 MR. SHIVELY responded the process could happen in several different           
 ways.  Ordinarily what would happen is the university would look at           
 the state's land base and make suggestions as to which lands they             
 might want title to.  Assuming the state and the university could             
 come to some agreement, the process of transferring the lands would           
 begin.  He noted there are certain lands mentioned in SB 16 which             
 the university cannot look at.                                                
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN GREEN said, "You made a very good point in that if                
 those lands that could be convertible perhaps into money generating           
 interests within a reasonable foreseeable future, those are                   
 excluded from their selection base.  Would that then...your early             
 comments kind of set the stage that what they would be                        
 selecting...unless they were going to wait and see what happens to            
 the other 20 million acres that we eventually get patent to...would           
 be goat pasture..."                                                           
                                                                               
 MR. SHIVELY stated currently, lands which have immediate economic             
 value are timber lands not on the department's five year schedule.            
 He said lands with oil and gas leasing potential are unknown.  The            
 department is doing some frontier areas now and proposing some                
 lands not having a lot of potential.  He said the department would            
 probably not want to give lands on the North Slope to the                     
 university.  Otherwise, it is lands the university might want to              
 lease for recreational use.  He noted those type of lands do not              
 bring a huge amount of money to either the university or the state.           
                                                                               
 Number 331                                                                    
                                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE KOTT questioned based on the one million acres to be           
 selected and all the exclusions built into the bill, how much land            
 is potentially available.                                                     
                                                                               
 MR. SHIVELY replied he did not know the answer to the question.  He           
 said if the map on the wall is looked at, particularly the blue               
 areas, there would still be a substantial portion of the land                 
 available to the university but what kind of economic value there             
 is in much of that land is questionable.  He stated it might be               
 possible for the university to look at approximately one-half of              
 the state's entitlement.                                                      
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN GREEN noted for the record that Representative Nicholai           
 had joined the committee at 9:10 a.m.                                         
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN GREEN said the two issues causing concern are why the             
 university would not be selecting federal lands rather than state             
 lands and the nebulous number of one million acres as it relates to           
 the university's need.  He stated the annual report of the                    
 Statewide Office of Land Management indicates the Wrangell-St.                
 Elias Park had selected about 250,000 acres of university land and            
 the exchange amount had not been arrived at yet.  He wondered if              
 that is something which would continue.                                       
                                                                               
 MR. SHIVELY clarified the question is whether the university might            
 sell or trade the one million acres.                                          
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN GREEN replied yes.                                                
                                                                               
 MR. SHIVELY stated he could not answer the question.  He felt the             
 university has done a good job in managing their assets.                      
                                                                               
 Number 385                                                                    
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN WILLIAMS stated in Section 4 of SB 16, on page 4, lines           
 24 through 29, prior existing rights are addressed including coal             
 leases, mining claims, and timber sales.  He asked how these prior            
 rights will be handled under the provisions of SB 16.                         
                                                                               
 MR. SHIVELY said it was his understanding those lands are not                 
 available to the university.                                                  
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN WILLIAMS noted there does not seem to be any provision            
 in SB 16 for a minimum size for selections and conveyances.  He               
 thought it might make more sense, and be cheaper for the state to             
 convey lands in a minimum size of 640 acres.  He said that is the             
 way land selections by the state, under the Statehood Act, are                
 handled.                                                                      
                                                                               
 MR. SHIVELY stated he cannot answer the question.  He agreed the              
 larger the parcel conveyed, the easier it is.  He thought in                  
 dealing with the university, the department would try to address              
 that issue.                                                                   
                                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE IRENE NICHOLIA asked if SB 16 would have an impact             
 on the Tanana Valley State Forest.                                            
                                                                               
 MR. SHIVELY said the Tanana Valley State Forest is a designated               
 area and it is his understanding if the land is in a unit like a              
 state forest, it is unavailable for selection but there are other             
 state lands in that forest which could be available.                          
                                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE NICHOLIA stated the Tanana Valley State Forest is a            
 popular place for people interested in the timber industry which              
 concerns her.                                                                 
                                                                               
 Number 437                                                                    
                                                                               
 MARTIN EPSTEIN, DIRECTOR, LAND MANAGEMENT, UNIVERSITY OF ALASKA,              
 testified via teleconference and stated he was available for                  
 questions.                                                                    
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN GREEN recalled a question regarding the university                
 selecting state land versus trying to get federal land.                       
                                                                               
 WENDY REDMAN, VICE PRESIDENT, UNIVERSITY OF ALASKA, responded the             
 university has pursued a federal land grant and has spoken at                 
 length with Senator Stevens and Representative Young.  They have              
 told the university they do not see any opportunity for that to               
 occur at this point in time.  She noted Senator Stevens and                   
 Representative Young are helping the university with some language            
 which would free up some constraints on the university's original             
 land grant.                                                                   
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN GREEN asked if they gave a reason.                                
                                                                               
 MS. REDMAN stated the rationale goes back to the original land                
 grant.  She said at the time of statehood, when the original land             
 grant was extinguished, the rationale was that because the federal            
 government was giving the state so much land, the federal                     
 government told the state they could pick up the balance.                     
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN GREEN clarified that was here say and not written                 
 anywhere.                                                                     
                                                                               
 MS. REDMAN said there is nothing written.  However, there is a                
 record that people have researched at the time of statehood but               
 there is nothing in the formal dissolution of the original                    
 conveyance acknowledging the state would pick up the difference.              
                                                                               
 Number 475                                                                    
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN GREEN asked if that is based on memory, would there be            
 any merit to a joint resolution to the federal government.  He also           
 wondered if there is any urgency in the university getting the land           
 before such a resolution could be acted on.                                   
                                                                               
 MS. REDMAN stated a resolution would be helpful.  She thought a               
 resolution asking the federal government to match the amount                  
 finally realized through SB 16 would be beneficial.  She said the             
 university would encourage the legislature to move forward with               
 conveyance of some portion of land.                                           
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN GREEN wondered if the university has specific land it             
 would like to select.                                                         
                                                                               
 MS. REDMAN responded the university does not have specific plans              
 for any lands, although Mr. Epstein is aware of lands available.              
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN GREEN recalled he had earlier referred to the annual              
 report of the Statewide Office of Land Management which had                   
 mentioned the 250,000 acre transfer.  He asked for comments on that           
 transfer.                                                                     
                                                                               
 MR. EPSTEIN stated the item Representative Green is referring to              
 was a sale of land to the National Park Service (NPS).  He said the           
 NPS plans to construct its Wrangell-St. Elias headquarters on that            
 property.  He noted the sale was quite advantageous to the                    
 university because in addition to receiving funds for the sale of             
 the property, the university will also benefit from the large                 
 number of employees and tourists who stop in to visit the                     
 headquarters site because the university owns the land surrounding            
 the parcel sold.                                                              
                                                                               
 MS. REDMAN explained it is the policy of the Board of Regents to              
 not sell land unless there is an enormous benefit or it is                    
 impossible for the university to determine a way to develop the               
 land effectively.  She said the university's land grant lands are             
 held for a long term to develop revenues, so it is quite unusual              
 for the university to sell land.                                              
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN GREEN noted the article in the report says the final              
 purchase price had not yet been determined.  He asked if that sale            
 had been consummated yet.                                                     
                                                                               
 MR. EPSTEIN replied the university got fair market value for the              
 land sold to the NPS and at this point, and some incalculable value           
 that the surrounding lands will benefit from due to the presence of           
 the employees and tourists.  He stated the NPS was unwilling to               
 invest in a new headquarters on leased lands.                                 
                                                                               
 Number 543                                                                    
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN GREEN asked why the number one million acres was                  
 chosen, since the university does not have a plan already.                    
                                                                               
 RON SWANSON, DIRECTOR, DIVISION OF LAND, DNR, testified via                   
 teleconference and stated he has no idea where the figure came                
 from.  He did not think there was any justification behind the                
 number as far as past legislation on the federal side.  He stated             
 the only thing he can surmise is that the mental health trust land            
 was one million acres and perhaps the university felt their land              
 grant should be equal to that amount.                                         
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN WILLIAMS asked if the state is entitled to more lands             
 from the federal government.                                                  
                                                                               
 MR. SWANSON replied the state currently owns 89 million acres and             
 the full entitlement is 106 million acres.                                    
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN WILLIAMS questioned whether or not the state can get              
 more than the 106 million acres.                                              
                                                                               
 MR. SWANSON responded no and added that amount of land is all the             
 state is entitled to under the Statehood Act.                                 
                                                                               
 Number 574                                                                    
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN GREEN asked if the state gives the university one                 
 million acres, could that one million acres be picked up as part of           
 the 106 million acres.                                                        
                                                                               
 MR. SWANSON stated no.                                                        
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN GREEN recalled the commissioner had indicated that                
 because of the restrictions in SB 16 and the problems with the                
 mental health settlement, it would be costly manpower wise and that           
 the value of the land left available would be diminished.  He asked           
 Mr. Swanson to comment.  He wondered since the plan is not there              
 yet and there is no justification for the one million acres, why is           
 there such an urgency.                                                        
                                                                               
 MR. SWANSON stated the best thing he can do is compare this to the            
 mental health issue which everyone has suffered through for the               
 last decade.  In the end, the legislature designated 900,000 plus             
 acres to become mental health land and the department went through            
 a very exhaustive process to identify those lands with                        
 environmental groups, public interest groups, and industry.  He               
 said the bottom line is there is not that much out there for the              
 state to offer.  He noted the state has a lot of habitat land,                
 recreation land, etc., but not a lot of land available immediately.           
                                                                               
 MR. SWANSON said the concerns with SB 16 include having the                   
 university select land, the department conveying the land and                 
 getting challenged at every turn by industry or interest groups.              
 With SB 16, the department will probably be challenged by someone             
 on every acre.  He thought it was a much better process to identify           
 the land up front and get it behind them.  He stated he is not                
 aware of any land, other than possibly timber, that can be turned             
 into bucks right away.                                                        
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN GREEN noted last year, the legislature passed an                  
 exploration licensing bill for large blocks of acreage to be put up           
 for concession-type leasing and those are not on the five year                
 forecast now.  He asked if the selection of land took some time,              
 would that allow the university to come into a concession-type                
 block and select land not on the five year forecast.                          
                                                                               
 MR. SWANSON said if the land is not on the five year schedule, the            
 university may select it.                                                     
                                                                               
 MS. REDMAN stated SB 16 allows an additional five years for the               
 state to get things into the five year plan before the university             
 can even select.  She added the commissioner controls every acre of           
 land put up for conveyance.  She said she was incredulous with the            
 discussion.                                                                   
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN GREEN clarified there is no over-topping.  He said this           
 is only a selection that is subject to the approval of the DNR                
 commissioner.                                                                 
                                                                               
 Number 632                                                                    
                                                                               
 MS. REDMAN stated the DNR commissioner has total control over what            
 lands are put up for possible selection by the university.  The               
 restrictions within the bill relative to the state's five year oil            
 and gas plan...everything is off limits.  She said as a result of             
 concerns expressed last year, an additional five years for the                
 state to get things into the oil and gas plan has been provided.              
 Therefore, the university could not select any oil and gas lands              
 for ten years.                                                                
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN GREEN clarified the university's plan cannot proceed              
 until the land is selected.  He wondered if the university has a              
 plan they would select around.                                                
                                                                               
 MS. REDMAN replied yes to both.  She said the university cannot               
 proceed until lands are put up for selection by the commissioner.             
 She noted the university currently has 100,000 acres in the state             
 on which it is generating substantial income from currently.  The             
 university's plan for new selections would be compatible with what            
 it has now in terms of trying to build a diverse portfolio,                   
 including lands which may be contiguous to lands the university               
 currently has.  She stressed the university is trying to determine            
 ways to generate new revenue for the state as the university is               
 part of the state.  Therefore, every dollar the university can                
 generate on state land is a new dollar generated for the state.               
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN GREEN recalled it has been mentioned several times that           
 the only land available for the university's selection would be               
 either timber lands or high speculation lands.                                
                                                                               
 MS. REDMAN stated the university is also making money on gravel and           
 recreational property.  She said while it might be true that the              
 university is not looking at a bonanza, there is a steady stream of           
 additional income out there, which may not be great in terms of a             
 Prudhoe Bay but if it is generating one, two, or five million                 
 dollars a year in additional revenue to the state, that is                    
 significant over the long term.  She pointed out that is additional           
 revenue not currently coming into the state.                                  
                                                                               
 MS. REDMAN said she appreciates Mr. Swanson's concerns about                  
 additional work for DNR, which is the reason the university assumed           
 it would pick up all costs of the selections.  She reiterated the             
 commissioner is in total control of how the lands get put up for              
 conveyance.  Therefore, the university is agreeable to making some            
 sort of agreement with the commissioner on a mechanism to try and             
 adjust the department's workload.                                             
                                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE NICHOLIA asked Ms. Redman if she has a map of the              
 lands the university is thinking about selecting.                             
                                                                               
 MS. REDMAN stated the university does not have lands it may be                
 thinking about selecting and pointed out all of the blue areas on             
 the map on the wall.  She noted the commissioner would first have             
 to put lands up for possible selection.                                       
                                                                               
 TAPE 95-61, SIDE B                                                            
 Number 000                                                                    
                                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE KOTT asked when the university would begin                     
 identifying lands for selection.                                              
                                                                               
 MS. REDMAN replied with the exception of oil and gas lands, or                
 lands currently tied up in the mental health settlement, the                  
 identification of lands could begin immediately upon passage of SB            
 16, so the commissioner could put lands up for possible selection.            
                                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE ALAN AUSTERMAN clarified it is up to the DNR                   
 commissioner.                                                                 
                                                                               
 MS. REDMAN replied it is totally up to the commissioner.                      
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN GREEN noted only 80 percent of the state's lands are              
 patented currently.  He asked if the university anticipates, and it           
 started now, they would be (indiscernible) for some of those or               
 would it confine its selections to that which is already patented.            
                                                                               
 MS. REDMAN responded the university would probably be doing some              
 betting in terms of lands that would be freed up when the mental              
 health settlement is concluded.  She said there is a ten year                 
 selection period, so the university would not select all of the               
 land in the next couple of years.                                             
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN GREEN asked if the university anticipates any degree of           
 similarity between the university's selection and the mental health           
 trust selection.                                                              
 MS. REDMAN stated the university does not expect anything like                
 that.  She stressed the university is prohibited from entering into           
 any litigation.  She recognized Mr. Swanson's dilemma because as              
 far as he is concerned, in terms of the land selections and                   
 conveyance, there is no difference between the mental health                  
 situation and the university's situation.  She noted Mr. Swanson              
 still will be hassled with a lot of land selection problems.  She             
 said the university is sympathetic to that and is interested in               
 trying to mitigate that as much as possible.                                  
                                                                               
 MS. REDMAN added there is still a possibility third parties may               
 enter into complaints, grievances, litigation, etc., relative to              
 the final selection.  She said the university would, through the              
 public process and through local community efforts, try to mitigate           
 as much of that as possible.  She pointed out it is not in the                
 university's interest, as a major public agency in the state, to              
 get into any kind of conflict with different regional interests.              
 The university's interest is to try and reach land resource plans             
 within a region which people have general agreement on.                       
                                                                               
 Number 083                                                                    
                                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE KOTT noted Ms. Redman had indicated the selection              
 process could take up to ten years.  He thought the university has            
 until the year 2009 to make the final selections.  If that is                 
 correct, he has a question regarding the fiscal note.  He stated              
 the fiscal note shows a $71,000 amount tied to SB 16 beginning                
 fiscal year 1996.  He asked if the selection process drags on until           
 2009, can it be assumed the $71,000 will carry forward until 2009             
 if that is when the university makes their final selection.                   
                                                                               
 MR. SWANSON responded the university is going to be in control of             
 the way they make their selections.  He assumed at the beginning              
 there would be a minimal amount of work (indiscernible) most amount           
 of work.  He thought the $71,000 could go up an incremental amount            
 over that depending on the agency's (indiscernible) and demand.               
                                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE KOTT noted there is $60,000 in the fiscal note tied            
 to personal services.  He asked if one person would be added to the           
 department's staff to work the issue.                                         
                                                                               
 MR. SWANSON replied that is a fair assumption.  He stated the                 
 details would need to be worked out with the university since they            
 would do the majority of the work.  However, the department would             
 need one staff person to review best interest findings, final                 
 findings, etc.                                                                
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN GREEN noted it does not really matter if the expense is           
 through DNR or the university, the state still has to pay.                    
                                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE KOTT said that was his argument.  He pointed out the           
 state is obligated in the end to fund this.                                   
 MS. REDMAN said the costs are funded with proceeds from the land.             
 Therefore, program receipts money would be used to fund the                   
 position.                                                                     
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN GREEN asked if those proceeds are from the land to be             
 acquired.                                                                     
                                                                               
 MS. REDMAN replied the costs would be funded from the university's            
 current land grant funds.  She said funds from all of the                     
 university's land development go into a statutorily set up natural            
 resource fund which the legislature appropriates.                             
                                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE AUSTERMAN pointed out if the university receives one           
 million more acres and it starts generating more funds, the $71,000           
 is well spent.                                                                
                                                                               
 (Representative DAVIES joined the committee.)                                 
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN GREEN noted there were at least five amendments to be             
 made and there is not time to hear them.  He assigned the bill to             
 a sub-committee to review the amendments.  He stated the sub-                 
 committee will be chaired by Representative Kott and include                  
 Representatives Davies and Green.  He said the committee will hear            
 SB 16 again on Wednesday, May 3.                                              
                                                                               
 Number                                                                        
 HB 91 MARINE PARKS ADDITIONS/CHANGES                                        
                                                                               
 Number 190                                                                    
                                                                               
 KATTARYNA BENNETT, HOUSE RESEARCHER TO REPRESENTATIVE CAREN                   
 ROBINSON, PRIME SPONSOR, told committee members HB 91 designates 13           
 islands in the Juneau area as a state marine park.  The islands               
 included in this parcel are located in Lynn Canal.  They are unique           
 because they can all be reached within a few minutes by skiff or a            
 few hours by kayak from the Juneau road system.  She stated the               
 primary use of the selected lands has been, historically, for                 
 recreation purposes.                                                          
                                                                               
 MS. BENNETT said in 1977, the islands were nominated by the city              
 and borough of Juneau for state selection from the Tongass National           
 Forest for recreation purposes.  In 1989, the state selected the              
 Channel Islands from the federal government under the Alaska                  
 Statehood Act.  She explained establishing the lands as a state               
 park would preserve the quality of existing and future recreational           
 usage and put the lands under the jurisdiction of the Division of             
 Parks, which is the proper enforcement agency for the land usage.             
                                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE CAREN ROBINSON, PRIME SPONSOR, noted that many of              
 the committee members had heard HB 91 in another committee.  She              
 stated HB 91 is not her bill, it is not Representative Elton's bill           
 but rather is a Juneau bill.  She noted this bill has passed the              
 House in the past and then got hung up in the Senate Rules                    
 Committee.  She pointed out the local borough assembly has a                  
 resolution in committee member folders in support of HB 91.  People           
 in the real estate agencies are also supportive of HB 91.                     
                                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE ROBINSON noted very small islands are being                    
 discussed.  She said the islands are already being used as parks              
 and HB 91 gives the Division of Parks, working with the local                 
 community, the type of enforcement needed to manage the islands               
 properly.  She noted local citizen groups are willing to help and             
 do what is needed to ensure that no additional responsibility is              
 put on the state.  She reiterated HB 91 was requested by the                  
 community and has a lot of support.                                           
                                                                               
 Number 259                                                                    
                                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE KOTT noted Shelter Island is a popular deer hunting            
 island and is also used by duck hunters.                                      
                                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE ROBINSON stated all existing permissible uses are              
 still allowed under HB 91.  She pointed out HB 91 ensures the                 
 property is being managed appropriately.  She noted the Alaska                
 Outdoor Council has a letter of support in committee member                   
 folders.                                                                      
                                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE KOTT asked if homesteads are affected by HB 91.                
                                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE ROBINSON replied homesteads would not be affected by           
 HB 91.  She said the homesteaders have also expressed their support           
 for HB 91.                                                                    
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN WILLIAMS asked if the state took ownership of the                 
 islands and offered the land for private ownership, would there be            
 any interest.                                                                 
                                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE ROBINSON said several years ago, any available land            
 was offered through the land lottery.                                         
                                                                               
 BILL GARRY, SUPERINTENDENT, SOUTHEAST AREA, DIVISION OF PARKS AND             
 OUTDOOR RECREATION, DNR, stated lands selected for disposal were              
 those lands at the south end of Shelter Island, which are the most            
 easily accessed.  He noted there still are lots available there.              
 He explained the rest of the lands are fairly steep and access is             
 difficult.  He said the other islands were selected mainly for                
 recreational use.                                                             
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN WILLIAMS clarified this land was made available to the            
 public at some point in the past.                                             
                                                                               
 Number 316                                                                    
                                                                               
 MR. GARRY said the land made available on the south end of Shelter            
 Island was identified early on as the best for private disposal.              
 The state did not ask for the rest of the lands for disposal but              
 rather for public recreation.  He noted under the Statehood Act,              
 there were two main themes for selection from the National Forests            
 --either community development or public recreation.  He stated the           
 rest of the lands selected, which now have been tentatively                   
 approved, were selected for public recreation.  He felt if the                
 islands were made available for disposal, someone would probably              
 come forward and buy them as speculation.  He added as far as the             
 islands' appropriateness for development and disposal, there has              
 not been any public support for that.                                         
                                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE AUSTERMAN wondered if there had been any discussion            
 about turning the ownership of this area to the Juneau community              
 rather than the state.                                                        
                                                                               
 MR. GARRY replied the city does not have any further selection                
 rights under its municipal and selection entitlements.  The city              
 has completed its selection.                                                  
                                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE AUSTERMAN said every year there are discussions                
 about closing certain state parks due to budget constraints.  He              
 noted there is a zero fiscal note attached to HB 91 due to the                
 community's willingness to help.  He asked if the community is not            
 willing to help, would this park be closed.                                   
                                                                               
 MR. GARRY stated funding for this park is not important at this               
 point.  He said passive management exists.  There are no plans to             
 put any facilities on the island, so there is nothing to close.  He           
 stated the islands will always be available.  The community has, on           
 a long term basis, volunteered to take care of the islands on a               
 volunteer basis.                                                              
                                                                               
 Number 367                                                                    
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN GREEN asked how the islands are currently policed.                
                                                                               
 MR. GARRY said the intent is to make the policing all volunteer.              
 He stated the division currently goes out to Shelter Island Marine            
 State Park and clean it up once a year.  Volunteers would be relied           
 on to take care of the other areas.                                           
                                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE ROBINSON explained there is the Juneau State Parks             
 Advisory Board and the Parks Board through the city.  She said as             
 with other parks, where volunteers are used, the intent is to work            
 with existing groups.  She noted the Southeast Alaska Guidance                
 Program is very interested in working with the department to assist           
 in doing whatever is needed to keep the areas clean.  She stated              
 many of these organizations not only have the skills, but also have           
 the equipment needed.                                                         
                                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE ROBINSON said it is hoped that the different groups            
 will be able to assist the department in doing the minimal kinds of           
 things that need to happen.  She noted these things will have to              
 happen regardless of whether or not the islands are transferred.              
 She stated the citizens of Juneau are frequently using these                  
 islands for recreation and one way or the other, the islands have             
 to be kept clean.                                                             
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN GREEN asked if there will not be any change within the            
 Division of Parks and Outdoor Recreation and all land available for           
 private holdings have been sold, what is the advantage of                     
 converting the islands to state park status versus leaving them as            
 they are.                                                                     
                                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE ROBINSON replied the main reason for converting the            
 islands to a state park is to give authority to the Division of               
 Parks and Outdoor Recreation to assist in appropriate policing                
 which may need to happen, including signs informing the public                
 about fire management, cleanliness, etc.                                      
                                                                               
 Number 415                                                                    
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN WILLIAMS clarified the public can take better care of             
 the state's land than the state can.                                          
                                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE ROBINSON responded that is correct.                            
                                                                               
 TED MERRELL, JUNEAU, expressed support for HB 91.                             
                                                                               
 GAIL BILLS, JUNEAU, expressed support for HB 91.                              
                                                                               
 CRISTI HERREN, REPRESENTATIVE, JUNEAU STATE PARKS ADVISORY BOARD,             
 said her board was instrumental in asking Representative Robinson             
 to introduce HB 91 and is very much in support of HB 91.                      
                                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE KOTT noted if HB 91 is passed, that will be a few              
 more acres less available.                                                    
                                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE KOTT made a MOTION to CONCEPTUALLY AMEND HB 91                 
 ensuring hunting would be preserved in perpetuity in the park.                
                                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE ROBINSON said she did not object to the amendment              
 but noted it is clearly in the statute that has to happen.                    
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN GREEN asked if there were any objections.  Hearing                
 none, the MOTION PASSED.                                                      
                                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE DAVIES made a MOTION to MOVE HB 91, as amended, with           
 zero fiscal note, out of committee with individual recommendations.           
                                                                               
 CO-CHAIRMAN GREEN asked if there were any objections.  Hearing                
 none, the MOTION PASSED.                                                      
                                                                               
 ADJOURNMENT                                                                   
                                                                               
 There being no further business to come before the House Resources            
 Committee, Co-Chairman Green adjourned the meeting at 10:15 a.m.              
                                                                               

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