Legislature(2015 - 2016)BARNES 124

03/30/2015 01:00 PM RESOURCES

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Audio Topic
01:33:49 PM Start
01:35:00 PM HJR18
01:54:45 PM HB153
02:32:56 PM Confirmation(s): Fisherman's Fund Advisory and Appeals Council
02:43:08 PM Adjourn
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
-- Delayed to 1:30 p.m. Today --
*+ HJR 18 LIMIT DECLARATION OF NATL. MONUMENTS TELECONFERENCED
Moved CSHJR 18(RES) Out of Committee
-- Invited/Public Testimony --
*+ HB 153 PALMER HAY FLATS GAME REFUGE TELECONFERENCED
Moved CSHB 153(RES) Out of Committee
-- Invited/Public Testimony --
+ Confirmation Hearing: TELECONFERENCED
Fishermen's Fund Advisory & Appeals Council
-- Invited/Public Testimony --
                    ALASKA STATE LEGISLATURE                                                                                  
               HOUSE RESOURCES STANDING COMMITTEE                                                                             
                         March 30, 2015                                                                                         
                           1:33 p.m.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Representative David Talerico, Co-Chair                                                                                         
Representative Mike Hawker, Vice Chair                                                                                          
Representative Bob Herron                                                                                                       
Representative Craig Johnson                                                                                                    
Representative Kurt Olson                                                                                                       
Representative Paul Seaton                                                                                                      
Representative Andy Josephson                                                                                                   
Representative Geran Tarr                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Representative Benjamin Nageak, Co-Chair                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE JOINT RESOLUTION NO. 18                                                                                                   
Urging the United States Congress to pass the Improved National                                                                 
Monument Designation Process Act.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     - MOVED CSHJR 18(RES) OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 153                                                                                                              
"An Act expanding the Palmer Hay Flats State Game Refuge."                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     - MOVED CSHB 153(RES) OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CONFIRMATION HEARING(S):                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Fishermen's Fund Advisory & Appeals Council                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
     Donald Stiles - Nome                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
     - CONFIRMATION(S) ADVANCED                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
PREVIOUS COMMITTEE ACTION                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
BILL: HJR 18                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE: LIMIT DECLARATION OF NATL. MONUMENTS                                                                               
SPONSOR(s): REPRESENTATIVE(s) MILLETT                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
03/16/15       (H)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
03/16/15       (H)       RES                                                                                                    
03/30/15       (H)       RES AT 1:00 PM BARNES 124                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
BILL: HB 153                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE: PALMER HAY FLATS GAME REFUGE                                                                                       
SPONSOR(s): REPRESENTATIVE(s) COLVER                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
03/20/15       (H)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
03/20/15       (H)       RES                                                                                                    
03/30/15       (H)       RES AT 1:00 PM BARNES 124                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
WITNESS REGISTER                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
JEFF TURNER, Staff                                                                                                              
Representative Charisse Millett                                                                                                 
Alaska State Legislature                                                                                                        
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Presented HJR 18 on behalf of the sponsor,                                                               
Representative Millett.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE JIM COLVER                                                                                                       
Alaska State Legislature                                                                                                        
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  As the sponsor introduced HB 153.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
DAVID SCOTT, Staff                                                                                                              
Representative Jim Colver                                                                                                       
Alaska State Legislature                                                                                                        
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Provided information on HB 153 on behalf of                                                              
the sponsor, Representative Colver.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
BRUCE DALE, Acting Director                                                                                                     
Division of Wildlife Conservation                                                                                               
Alaska Department of Fish & Game (ADF&G)                                                                                        
Anchorage, Alaska                                                                                                               
POSITION STATEMENT:  Answered questions regarding HB 153.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
ROD ARNO, Executive Director                                                                                                    
Alaska Outdoor Council (AOC)                                                                                                    
Palmer, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in support of HB 153.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
TOM ROTHE, Duck Hunter                                                                                                          
Eagle River, Alaska                                                                                                             
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in support of HB 153.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
HERMAN GRIESE                                                                                                                   
Alaskans for Palmer Hay Flats State Game Refuge                                                                                 
Wasilla, Alaska                                                                                                                 
POSITION  STATEMENT:    Testified  in   support  of  HB  153  and                                                             
suggested additional lands for inclusion in the bill.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
LARRY ENGLE                                                                                                                     
Palmer, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in support of HB 153.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
BEN MULLIGAN, Legislative Liaison                                                                                               
Special Assistant to the Commissioner                                                                                           
Office of the Commissioner                                                                                                      
Alaska Department of Fish & Game (ADF&G)                                                                                        
Anchorage, Alaska                                                                                                               
POSITION STATEMENT:  Answered questions related to HB 153.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
DONALD STILES, Appointee                                                                                                        
Fisherman's Fund Advisory and Appeals Council                                                                                   
Nome, Alaska                                                                                                                    
POSITION STATEMENT:   Testified  as appointee to  the Fisherman's                                                             
Fund Advisory and Appeals Council.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
ACTION NARRATIVE                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
1:33:49 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  DAVID  TALERICO  called the  House  Resources  Standing                                                             
Committee meeting to order at  1:33 p.m.  Representatives Seaton,                                                               
Josephson,  Tarr,  Johnson,  Olson,  Herron,  and  Talerico  were                                                               
present at the  call to order.  Representative  Hawker arrived as                                                               
the meeting was in progress.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
          HJR 18-LIMIT DECLARATION OF NATL. MONUMENTS                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
1:35:00 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR TALERICO announced  that the first order  of business is                                                               
HOUSE JOINT RESOLUTION NO. 18,  Urging the United States Congress                                                               
to pass the Improved National Monument Designation Process Act.                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
1:35:23 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
JEFF  TURNER,  Staff,  Representative  Charisse  Millett,  Alaska                                                               
State Legislature, explained that HJR  18 urges the U.S. Congress                                                               
to pass  the Improved National Monument  Designation Process Act,                                                               
S.  437,  sponsored  by  U.S.  Senator  Lisa  Murkowski  and  co-                                                               
sponsored by U.S.  Senator Dan Sullivan.  He said  S. 437 creates                                                               
new requirements  and limits  the authority  of the  President of                                                               
the United States to expand  monuments under the 1906 Antiquities                                                               
Act.  Passed under the  administration of Theodore Roosevelt, the                                                               
Antiquities Act  grants the  President of  the United  States the                                                               
power  to create  national monuments  that  protect and  preserve                                                               
important  landmarks and  environmentally  sensitive areas  using                                                               
the smallest  area necessary  to preserve  and protect  the place                                                               
under  the monument.   While  the Antiquities  Act has  been used                                                               
wisely to preserve some of  America's most pristine and important                                                               
areas, many things  have changed over the last 100  years.  There                                                               
are more  demands on public lands  than ever and state  and local                                                               
economies  need  to  be  taken   into  consideration.    Tourism,                                                               
hunting,  commercial  and  sport fishing,  and  natural  resource                                                               
development all  take place on public  lands.  The time  has come                                                               
to  make  the  process  for   creating  national  monuments  more                                                               
comprehensive.   Senator  Murkowski's bill,  S. 437,  makes three                                                               
significant changes to  the Antiquities Act.   First, it requires                                                               
specific  authorization by  an  act of  Congress  to designate  a                                                               
national monument.   Second,  it requires  approval by  the state                                                               
legislature where the  monument would be located  and, for marine                                                               
national  monuments, approval  by each  state legislature  within                                                               
100 miles  of the proposed monument.   Third, it must  conform to                                                               
the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA).                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
1:37:29 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. TURNER said  S. 437 is important to Alaska  because there are                                                               
currently 142  national monuments.   Ten of these  monuments were                                                               
created, and  two more expanded,  under the  Obama Administration                                                               
since starting  its second  term in  January 2013.   All  of that                                                               
happened without the approval of  Congress or of the states where                                                               
the monument  was created.   The last monument created  in Alaska                                                               
was by  President Carter in  1978.  Senator Murkowski  filed this                                                               
legislation because she is concerned  about the potential for new                                                               
monuments in  Alaska that restrict or  outright prohibit critical                                                               
economic activity.   Two possible sites are  the Aleutian Islands                                                               
and  the Arctic  National Wildlife  Refuge (ANWR).   It  is known                                                               
that President  Obama will be  in Alaska  this summer, but  it is                                                               
unknown  whether the  purpose  of  the trip  is  to announce  the                                                               
creation of a new national  monument.  Alaska's two U.S. senators                                                               
are so  worried that this  might happen  that they have  filed S.                                                               
437, which is the legislation that HJR 18 supports.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
MR. TURNER  directed attention to  two articles in  the committee                                                               
packet, one  an editorial from the  Deseret News in Utah  and the                                                             
other from the  Fairbanks News Miner, in  which Senator Murkowski                                                             
is quoted expressing  her fear that President Obama  will put the                                                               
Arctic National Wildlife Refuge  into permanent wilderness status                                                               
and lock it up.  He pointed out  that Alaska does not have a Wall                                                               
Street  or  a Silicon  Valley,  but  it  does have  Prudhoe  Bay,                                                               
Kuparuk,  Bristol Bay  fisheries,  Fort Knox,  Greens Creek,  and                                                               
other  natural resource  extraction areas  that fuel  the state's                                                               
economy and  provide necessary  resources like  energy, minerals,                                                               
and nutrition for the  entire nation.  He said S.  437 and HJR 18                                                               
are  not  seeking  to  stop new  national  monuments  from  being                                                               
created;  they  are  about improving  the  process  for  creating                                                               
national  monuments  so  the   Alaska  legislature  and  everyday                                                               
Alaskans are  made part of the  public policy process when  a new                                                               
national monument is considered.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
1:40:13 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE JOSEPHSON  recalled Mr. Turner  mentioning hunting                                                               
as one of the diversity of  needs.  He pointed out that Southeast                                                               
Alaska's Admiralty Island  is a national monument  where there is                                                               
a huge  annual brown bear  hunt, mostly commercially guided.   He                                                               
therefore  surmised  that  hunts  are allowed  on  some  national                                                               
monuments.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
MR.  TURNER replied  he  believes  there is,  but  said there  is                                                               
always  the  potential  under  National  Park  Service  rules  or                                                               
regulations where additional restrictions could be put in place.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  JOSEPHSON pointed  out that  the Alaska  National                                                               
Interest Lands Conservation Act (ANILCA)  is from 1980, while the                                                               
Antiquities  Act is  1906.   He asked  whether ANILCA  trumps the                                                               
Antiquities Act given that ANILA is  74 years later and has a "no                                                               
more" clause.   He further asked  whether there really is  a risk                                                               
of  a monument  designation in  the 1002  Area within  the Arctic                                                               
National Wildlife Refuge.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
MR.  TURNER   responded  that  Representative   Millett,  Senator                                                               
Murkowski, and Senator Sullivan believe  it is a real possibility                                                               
and  that is  why they  filed S.  437  and HJR  18.   Even if  it                                                               
doesn't  happen,  there has  been  a  lot  of discontent  in  the                                                               
western states  regarding how the  national monument  process has                                                               
been going  forward.   Currently in this  country of  300 million                                                               
people, 1  person can make this  decision.  While that  person is                                                               
the President of  the United States, a lot has  changed since the                                                               
Antiquities Act was put in place  in 1906.  This seeks to improve                                                               
the process for creating national monuments.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
1:42:53 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  TARR inquired  whether  any  other U.S.  senators                                                               
have co-sponsored S. 437.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
MR.  TURNER answered  it has  one  co-sponsor, Senator  Sullivan.                                                               
The  bill,  filed February  10,  2015,  was referred  to  Senator                                                               
Murkowski's  U.S.   Senate  Committee   on  Energy   and  Natural                                                               
Resources, but hasn't yet been scheduled  for a hearing.  He said                                                               
he assumes that  some other western senators will sign  on to the                                                               
bill once the hearing process starts.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
1:43:41 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HAWKER drew attention to  HJR 18, page 2, line 10,                                                               
which states:  "... in  February 2015, United States Senator Lisa                                                               
Murkowski  introduced  ...."   He  inquired  what  the  sponsor's                                                               
thought would be to recognize that  S. 437 was introduced by both                                                               
Senator Murkowski and Senator Sullivan.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
MR. TURNER  replied he  is sure  Representative Millett  would be                                                               
fine with such an amendment.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
1:44:39 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HAWKER  moved to  adopt Conceptual Amendment  1 to                                                               
insert language on  page 2, line 10, recognizing that  S. 437 was                                                               
introduced by  Senator Lisa Murkowski  and Senator  Dan Sullivan.                                                               
There being no objection, Conceptual Amendment 1 passed.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
1:45:40 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR TALERICO opened public testimony  on HJR 18, then closed                                                               
it after ascertaining that no one wished to testify.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
1:46:23 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HAWKER moved to report  HJR 18, as amended, out of                                                               
committee  with individual  recommendations and  the accompanying                                                               
zero fiscal note.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
1:46:44 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  JOSEPHSON objected  for  purposes of  discussion,                                                               
saying he  agrees with Mr.  Turner's statement that  logically as                                                               
the  nation's population  grows over  300 million  there is  less                                                               
land  and more  economic pressure.   Some  of these  designations                                                               
don't really impact economic development  that severely, he said,                                                               
and  he  thinks that  this  could  really politicize  passage  of                                                               
those.   It  is something  that began  with one  of the  greatest                                                               
Republicans,  President Theodore  Roosevelt, who  might see  this                                                               
differently.  He recalled that while  in law school he spent time                                                               
studying  the  Grand  Staircase-Escalante National  Monument  and                                                               
remarked he would  be interested to see what the  objection is to                                                               
that monument now, if any.   He said there was objection when the                                                               
monument was established by President  Clinton because it stopped                                                               
a  French-owned coal  mine, but  he suspects  there is  a lot  of                                                               
tourism  there.   This  is  a  special privilege  of  Presidents,                                                               
Democrats  and Republicans,  he continued,  and while  this power                                                               
should be used carefully it has  been a great power and he thinks                                                               
the  United States  is  better for  it.   For  example, there  is                                                               
Devil's Tower,  the Statue  of Liberty,  Death Valley,  Zion, and                                                               
Arches.   Some of these  are now  national parks that  started as                                                               
monuments.  He said he has mixed feelings about HJR 18.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
1:48:52 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  SEATON  pointed  out  that  the  second  to  last                                                               
paragraph  in the  sponsor  statement states  that  S. 437  would                                                               
require  approval  by  each state  legislature,  and  for  marine                                                               
national  monuments, approval  by each  state legislature  within                                                               
100 miles.   However, he noted,  this is not included  within HJR                                                               
18 so it isn't quite parallel with  the federal bill.  He said he                                                               
supports moving HJR 18.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
1:49:47 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE JOSEPHSON withdrew his  objection.  There being no                                                               
further  objection, CSHJR  18(RES)  was reported  from the  House                                                               
Resources Standing Committee.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
The committee took an at-ease from 1:50 p.m. to 1:54 p.m.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
              HB 153-PALMER HAY FLATS GAME REFUGE                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
1:54:45 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR TALERICO  announced that the  next order of  business is                                                               
HOUSE BILL NO. 153, "An Act  expanding the Palmer Hay Flats State                                                               
Game Refuge."                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
1:55:15 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  JIM  COLVER,  Alaska State  Legislature,  as  the                                                               
sponsor  introduced  HB  153,  explaining  it  would  expand  the                                                               
boundary of the Palmer Hay Flats  State Game Refuge.  He said the                                                               
refuge was established in 1975 by  the legislature and is an area                                                               
where the [1964] earthquake caused the  land to drop two feet, so                                                               
what was once uplands became lowlands  and wetlands.  He said the                                                               
bill simply incorporates about 1,360  acres that were donated and                                                               
acquired between  1989 and 2013.   Drawing attention to  the maps                                                               
in the  committee packet, he  said the lands with  [red hatching]                                                               
are the lands described and that  would be added to the refuge by                                                               
the bill.   He noted that  the legal description has  been vetted                                                               
four times and  reviewed by the survey section  at the Department                                                               
of  Natural Resources  (DNR).    He said  the  area is  important                                                               
habitat for  waterfowl, shorebirds,  and a  number of  species of                                                               
salmon and fish, as well as  important winter range for moose.  A                                                               
number of different user groups  use the area, including hunters,                                                               
recreationists,  and trappers,  plus there  is an  advocacy group                                                               
called Alaskans for Palmer Hay Flats  State Game Refuge.  He said                                                               
there has  been no opposition  to the  bill and there  is support                                                               
from outdoor  organizations, the Board of  Game, local elementary                                                               
school kids,  and the Alaska  Department of Fish &  Game (ADF&G).                                                               
He further pointed  out that the bill has a  zero fiscal note and                                                               
that  a  proposed  committee  substitute   cleans  up  the  legal                                                               
descriptions that are in the original bill.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
1:59:25 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  HAWKER  moved  to adopt  the  proposed  committee                                                               
substitute (CS),  labeled 29-LS0653\H,  Bullard, 3/28/15,  as the                                                               
working  document.   There  being  no  objection, Version  H  was                                                               
before the committee.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
1:59:56 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  COLVER   explained  the  proposed   changes  that                                                               
Version H would make to the  original bill.  He drew attention to                                                               
page 2, line  15, of the original bill which  states "Section 28"                                                               
and noted that Version H, lines  15-16, clean up the language for                                                               
within  Section 28  of Township  17 North,  Range 1  East, Seward                                                               
Meridian, Lots  1-2, by  adding the north  half of  the southwest                                                               
quarter  to  the  string  of  legal  descriptions.    This  is  a                                                               
description  of some  of  the  new lands  added.    He then  drew                                                               
attention to  page 3 of  Version H, lines  11, 15, and  18, which                                                               
correctly state "U.S.  Survey No. 9023".  He  explained that this                                                               
survey  number had  transposed digits  in the  original bill  and                                                               
that  this survey  was done  for the  conveyance of  the railroad                                                               
from the federal government to the state.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
DAVID  SCOTT,  Staff,  Representative Jim  Colver,  Alaska  State                                                               
Legislature, added  that Legislative Legal and  Research Services                                                               
is a little  wary of these kinds of bills  and wants them double-                                                               
checked multiple times by the various state departments.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
2:02:26 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE JOHNSON  inquired whether  access to  private land                                                               
would be blocked by adding the new land to the refuge.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE COLVER  replied he does  not believe so.   He said                                                               
that as  far as  he knows  there is no  limitation to  access and                                                               
moving around  within this state land.   It is simply  that it is                                                               
designated as a game refuge.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE JOHNSON  asked whether any  of the refuge  land is                                                               
off limits to motorized vehicles.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  COLVER deferred  to  ADF&G, but  said he  doesn't                                                               
think so because  otherwise the Alaska Outdoor  Council would not                                                               
have  endorsed  the bill  and  the  council's letter  of  support                                                               
references this.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  JOHNSON specified  he wants  to be  cautious that                                                               
there is no blocking of access to private land.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
BRUCE DALE,  Acting Director, Division of  Wildlife Conservation,                                                               
Alaska Department of  Fish & Game (ADF&G), responded  that to the                                                               
department's knowledge  there is  no access  blocked and  that is                                                               
not the  intent of the department.   There should be  free access                                                               
to any inholdings.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
2:04:36 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SEATON asked  whether ADF&G or DNR  has control of                                                               
the access, rights-of-way, and winter trails.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
MR.  DALE  answered  that  snow   machines  are  authorized  from                                                               
November  9 to  March  31 as  long as  there  is sufficient  snow                                                               
cover, and  they can go  anywhere they  want.  Four  wheelers are                                                               
authorized  on  designated trails  only  and  there are  numerous                                                               
access points.   There  are some  restrictions on  outboard motor                                                               
horsepower on some of the waterways.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SEATON  said he  wants to make  it clear  that DNR                                                               
does have restrictions  for overland permits on  any wetlands and                                                               
generally it is winter compatible.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
2:05:50 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE TARR  observed from the  map that the  parcel that                                                               
would  be added  on the  east side  of the  refuge has  privately                                                               
owned parcels  abutting it on the  south side.  Noting  that land                                                               
acquisition has been  ongoing for a decade or  more, she inquired                                                               
whether there  will be an  effort going  forward to try  to bring                                                               
these other private lands into the refuge.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
MR. DALE replied  he does not know of any  efforts to bring those                                                               
particular lands into the refuge at this time.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
2:07:07 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR TALERICO opened public testimony.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
ROD  ARNO,  Executive  Director, Alaska  Outdoor  Council  (AOC),                                                               
testified  in  support of  HB  153  with  the correction  on  the                                                               
boundaries.   He noted  that this  area is on  the edge  of urban                                                               
sprawl and  for that reason  AOC supports adding  this additional                                                               
protection of  the areas that  have been acquired.   The addition                                                               
on  the west  side of  lands  up to  Cottonwood Creek  is a  very                                                               
important access point  for folks who hunt waterfowl  and fish in                                                               
the  Hay Flats  area.   This  is important  critical habitat  for                                                               
protection,  he said,  and  AOC supports  that  and supports  the                                                               
management of access on that land.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
2:09:12 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
TOM  ROTHE,  Duck  Hunter,  testified   in  support  of  HB  153,                                                               
explaining he is  a duck hunter and frequent Hay  Flats user.  He                                                               
urged the  committee and the  entire legislature to  support this                                                               
bill  because it  clarifies things  that have  been lingering  in                                                               
terms of  management for a number  of years.  He  is retired from                                                               
ADF&G  after  25 years  and  part  of  what  he did  for  ADF&G's                                                               
waterfowl program was  to work with refuges  and local landowners                                                               
to acquire some  of these parcels in partnership  with many other                                                               
entities.   The purpose  was largely to  provide legal  access to                                                               
the refuge.   For example, Cottonwood Creek was secured  and is a                                                               
legal access point.  The property  on the east side of the refuge                                                               
is the  primary access point  and was  private land prior  to its                                                               
acquisition.    These  parcels  have  been  really  important  in                                                               
securing easy ways for the public to  get in and ADF&G has done a                                                               
nice job  of starting  to improve  those for users.   A  total of                                                               
2,400 acres  has been  acquired since  1990 and  much of  that is                                                               
tremendous  habitat for  waterfowl, moose,  and salmon.   All  of                                                               
these acquisitions were  done pretty much without  the benefit of                                                               
appropriated funds from the state.   Partners and federal wetland                                                               
grants brought over $1.4 million to  the table for the benefit of                                                               
Alaskans.   He offered his  appreciation for  Co-Chair Talerico's                                                               
bill  for license  fee increases  [HB 137]  because the  fees for                                                               
duck stamps  are applied for these  kinds of things -  seed money                                                               
to put together  packages to get good habitat  and public access.                                                               
Mr. Rothe  pointed out that  the landowners were all  willing and                                                               
for the most part the  properties are largely unbuildable because                                                               
they are  wetlands.   So, when  approached, those  folks received                                                               
good value for their properties as  well as tax benefits in those                                                               
cases where  there were  donations.  If  included in  the refuge,                                                               
these new acquisitions  will not create any  more restrictions on                                                               
those lands than  is currently available.  The  refuge is managed                                                               
under a well-written  management plan that looks at  all the uses                                                               
that have been negotiated over  the years with the public through                                                               
the public process.  It sets  up a regime to both protect habitat                                                               
and allow  public uses.   The most  important parts of  this bill                                                               
are that it fulfills promises  made to those partners who stepped                                                               
up  and put  in  over  a million  dollars,  plus it  consolidates                                                               
management   authority   in   terms   of   enforcement,   habitat                                                               
enhancement projects, or other things.   He drew attention to the                                                               
letter of support from the Board of Game.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  HAWKER thanked  Mr.  Rothe for  his thorough  and                                                               
convincing testimony.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
2:14:23 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
HERMAN GRIESE, Alaskans  for Palmer Hay Flats  State Game Refuge,                                                               
testified  in  support of  HB  153,  saying  his group  has  been                                                               
involved in the  refuge for over 10 years trying  to clean up the                                                               
trash  and car  bodies  that were  strewn  throughout the  access                                                               
points on  the refuge.   His group worked with  granting agencies                                                               
to work  with ADF&G to  improve the  access sites.   For example,                                                               
along  the Glenn  Highway  at the  Reflections  Lake turnout  his                                                               
group  is finishing  a wildlife  observation tower  that will  be                                                               
turned over to the  state.  The goal of his  group is to maintain                                                               
opportunity  for access  by hunters,  fishers,  and trappers,  as                                                               
well  as   by  children  from   local  schools   for  educational                                                               
opportunities.   Another goal  is to  maintain the  habitat value                                                               
for the wildlife and fisheries resources  on the refuge.  He said                                                               
his group  enthusiastically supports this legislation.   About 75                                                               
families  and  25  donors  are  members of  the  group  and  have                                                               
provided  many  dedicated  hours  and  about  $800,000  has  been                                                               
invested in the  refuge to try to improve the  looks, access, and                                                               
opportunities.    Mr.  Griese  pointed out  that  there  are  two                                                               
particular sites.   The primary access  site on the west  side is                                                               
at  Cottonwood  Creek  and  is   under  a  DNR  Interagency  Land                                                               
Management  Agreement  (ILMA).   Some  of  those investments  and                                                               
access are  still on that  Interagency Land  Management Agreement                                                               
(ILMA) land.   He urged that  these [ILMA] lands be  added to the                                                               
boundary, saying that  letters have been sent to  the governor in                                                               
the past  and, thanks to Mr.  Rothe, people are now  at the table                                                               
discussing that.   Another site is  on the eastern side.   It can                                                               
be seen on the map that  the boundary for the new change includes                                                               
several channels that are now dry  for the most part and it would                                                               
be  good if  a  line could  be drawn  across  those channels  and                                                               
include them as  well.  They were considered part  of an omission                                                               
in the past  because of wetland or water issues.   But things are                                                               
changing as it  is a very dynamic area and  decades down the road                                                               
more changes will be looked at as well.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
2:18:24 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  HAWKER,  regarding  Mr. Griese's  concerns  about                                                               
improving the  quality of access  as part of this  legislation by                                                               
bringing  in this  additional land,  asked whether  conversations                                                               
have been  held with ADF&G  or other  state folks who  would make                                                               
those recommendations to the legislature.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
MR. GRIESE responded that his  organization has been working very                                                               
closely with ADF&G, which is  the regulatory agency on the access                                                               
for all these  sites.  He said there hasn't  been any controversy                                                               
except for  some of the  areas where  there is increasing  use of                                                               
all-terrain  vehicles on  an  existing and  allowable  trail.   A                                                               
proposal  is currently  being looked  at to  deal with  repairing                                                               
some  of  that damage,  otherwise  there  is very  close  working                                                               
cooperation with ADF&G on that.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
2:19:46 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  TARR   inquired  whether   the  east   side  site                                                               
mentioned by Mr. Griese is a site currently under consideration.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
MR. GRIESE  answered that the area  on the eastern end  is not in                                                               
the current legislation.  It has  been proposed in years past and                                                               
his  organization has  written letters  requesting that  boundary                                                               
change.   He said it's  difficult to advise  individuals entering                                                               
that eastern  side as  to where  they are  in the  refuge because                                                               
there are  islands of land  that are  in the refuge  and channels                                                               
that are not.   Now that it  is all dry there is  access in those                                                               
areas and  people wanting  to recreate there  would like  to know                                                               
whether or not they are in the refuge.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
2:20:59 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
LARRY ENGLE testified in support of  HB 153, saying he is a long-                                                               
time user of  the Palmer Hay Flats, including from  before it was                                                               
designated a  refuge.  He  noted that many  of the things  he was                                                               
going  to bring  up  have already  been  discussed very  clearly,                                                               
particularly  Mr. Rothe's  and Mr.  Griese's  discussions, so  he                                                               
won't go  into those details.   He  pointed out that  many people                                                               
are unaware  of HB 153,  but that  Proposal 105 submitted  to the                                                               
Board  of Game  by  Mr. Rothe  did receive  ample  review by  the                                                               
public throughout the  state.  Virtually everything  he has heard                                                               
is  positive for  adding these  fragmented lands  to the  refuge.                                                               
School  kids   have  written  letters,  as   have  organizations,                                                               
individuals,  and local  advisory  committees.   He concluded  by                                                               
reading  from  remarks  made  by  ADF&G to  the  Board  of  Game:                                                               
"Adoption of this  proposal would not result  in significant cost                                                               
to the  department.  Instead,  it may  result in cost  savings by                                                               
increasing management efficiency."                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
2:23:42 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  TALERICO  closed  public testimony  after  ascertaining                                                               
that  no  one  else  wished  to testify.    He  opened  committee                                                               
discussion on the bill.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
2:24:20 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HAWKER  inquired as  to what  ADF&G thinks  of the                                                               
testimony suggesting there may be  additional fragmented lands in                                                               
both  the eastern  and  western  access areas  that  ought to  be                                                               
considered for inclusion in HB 153.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
MR.  DALE  replied that  the  division  and the  department  have                                                               
suggested legislation in  the past to include those  lands.  When                                                               
there is  inconsistency in land  ownership it makes  it difficult                                                               
for  both staff  and the  public to  know where  they are  at and                                                               
which rules apply.  Thus,  including anything within the boundary                                                               
of the refuge would be supported.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  HAWKER asked  why  that wasn't  included in  this                                                               
particular bill given that legislation  has been submitted in the                                                               
past.                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
MR. DALE  offered his belief  that the proposal submitted  to the                                                               
Board of Game  by Mr. Rothe did not include  additional lands and                                                               
the board voted on the proposal as written.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
BEN  MULLIGAN,  Legislative  Liaison, Special  Assistant  to  the                                                               
Commissioner, Office  of the  Commissioner, Alaska  Department of                                                               
Fish  & Game  (ADF&G),  confirmed the  department has  considered                                                               
legislation, but explained that Mr.  Rothe's proposal was for the                                                               
lands that ADF&G  knew were firm and had been  vetted for knowing                                                               
that they are  deed restricted.  The  Interagency Land Management                                                               
Agreement (ILMA) lands are still  being discussed and are now DNR                                                               
general  state lands,  but ADF&G  hasn't  reached a  point to  be                                                               
comfortable enough to say yes for  certain and go to the sponsor,                                                               
but it is definitely a conversation that will be had.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
2:26:43 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HAWKER inquired whether  ADF&G is comfortable with                                                               
those additional lands at this time.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MR. MULLIGAN replied  not enough to suggest putting  them in now.                                                               
The department  needs to have  an internal conversation  and then                                                               
talk with the sponsor.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  HAWKER  inquired as  to  what  happened with  the                                                               
previous legislation that had proposed to do just that.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
MR.  MULLIGAN responded  that no  legislation  had actually  been                                                               
introduced, Mr.  Dale was referencing ADF&G's  own internal ideas                                                               
and not anything official into the legislature.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
2:27:55 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR TALERICO stated  his intention to move  the bill, noting                                                               
that the remarks have been very positive.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
2:29:39 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  HERRON moved  to report  Version H,  the proposed                                                               
committee substitute  labeled 29-LS0653\H, Bullard,  3/28/15, out                                                               
of   committee   with    individual   recommendations   and   the                                                               
accompanying [zero] fiscal note.   There being no objection, CSHB                                                               
153(RES)  was   reported  from   the  House   Resources  Standing                                                               
Committee.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
The committee took an at-ease from 2:30 p.m. to 2:32 p.m.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
^CONFIRMATION(S):  Fisherman's Fund Advisory and Appeals Council                                                                
CONFIRMATION(S):  Fisherman's Fund Advisory and Appeals Council                                                             
                                                                                                                                
2:32:56 PM                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR TALERICO announced  that the final order  of business is                                                               
the confirmation hearing for Mr.  Donald Stiles, appointee to the                                                               
Fisherman's Fund Advisory and Appeals Council.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
2:33:33 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
DONALD STILES,  Appointee, Fisherman's Fund Advisory  and Appeals                                                               
Council, stated he has been  a commercial fisherman for nearly 40                                                               
years and is interested in serving  a second term on the council.                                                               
He said he  appreciates the gentlemen and staff he  works with on                                                               
the council and it has been a pleasure serving so far.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
2:34:36 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE JOSEPHSON asked what the council does.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
MR. STILES  replied the council  reviews medical claims  that are                                                               
above  the  $10,000   limit  and  decides  whether   a  claim  is                                                               
legitimate.   It  requires some  fishing experience  to determine                                                               
whether or not the claim is  fisheries related.  Over the history                                                               
of the  Alaska Commercial Fishermen's  Fund, people have  used it                                                               
more as their  personal insurance and that is not  the purpose of                                                               
that fund.  So, the council's effort is to protect that fund.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE JOSEPHSON  inquired whether the  Alaska Commercial                                                               
Fishermen's  Fund   is  a  carve-out   of  the   Alaska  Workers'                                                               
Compensation law.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE OLSON responded no, it is not.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  SEATON  explained   that  the  Alaska  Commercial                                                               
Fishermen's Fund is a dedicated  fund that was established before                                                               
statehood.  It  is comprised of payments made by  everyone who is                                                               
in  commercial  fisheries  and  a  portion  of  those  commercial                                                               
fishery license fees  goes into the fund.  The  fund ensures that                                                               
fishermen injured on the job  have recourse and is something like                                                               
workers' compensation, but is totally separate.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MR.  STILES confirmed  that  Representative  Seaton explained  it                                                               
correctly.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
2:37:14 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  HERRON   asked  what  Mr.   Stiles'  occupational                                                               
specialty was while in the U.S. Marine Corps.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
MR. STILES answered aviation ordinance.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
2:37:32 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE TARR  inquired whether the committee  received the                                                               
typical application for  this type of appointment  or whether the                                                               
one-page sheet in the committee packet is all that there is.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR TALERICO  replied that  the one-page  sheet is  all that                                                               
has   been   received.      Responding   further,   he   informed                                                               
Representative Tarr that this is a reappointment for Mr. Stiles.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
2:38:15 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  JOSEPHSON  commented  that there  are  Jones  Act                                                               
remedies, workers' compensation, and  the fishermen's fund, so he                                                               
has a lot of learning to do about how they mesh.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
2:38:37 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR TALERICO  opened public comment on  the reappointment of                                                               
Mr. Stiles, then closed it  after ascertaining that no one wished                                                               
to testify.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
2:39:07 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  OLSON   explained  that  the   Alaska  Commercial                                                               
Fishermen's Fund applies when there  is nothing else there - when                                                               
there  is not  protection, indemnity,  or longshoremen  or harbor                                                               
workers, or anything else in lieu of.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SEATON said  it used to have a cap  of $2,500 that                                                               
has now been raised to $10,000.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MR. STILES confirmed the cap has been raised to $10,000.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  JOSEPHSON  concluded  it  is the  backup  to  the                                                               
backup, the last resort.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
2:39:55 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HAWKER  noted that  moving forward  a name  to the                                                               
joint legislative  session for purposes of  confirmation does not                                                               
reflect  the intent  of any  member  on the  committee to  either                                                               
support  or  not  support  that  appointee at  the  time  of  the                                                               
legislative session.  He moved to  advance the name of Mr. Donald                                                               
L.  Stiles to  a joint  legislative  session for  the purpose  of                                                               
considering  his confirmation  to the  Fisherman's Fund  Advisory                                                               
and Appeals Council.  There  being no objection, Mr. Stiles' name                                                               
was forwarded.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
The committee took an at-ease from 2:40 p.m. to 2:43 p.m.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
2:43:08 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
ADJOURNMENT                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
There being no  further business before the  committee, the House                                                               
Resources Standing Committee meeting was adjourned at 2:43 p.m.                                                                 

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
3.30.15 HRES HB 153 - Fiscal Note.pdf HRES 3/30/2015 1:00:00 PM
HB 153
3.30.15 HRES HB 153 - Fish & Game overview of Palmer Hay Flats.pdf HRES 3/30/2015 1:00:00 PM
HB 153
3.30.15 HRES HB 153 version W.pdf HRES 3/30/2015 1:00:00 PM
HB 153
3.30.15 HRES HB 153 - sponsor statement.pdf HRES 3/30/2015 1:00:00 PM
HB 153
3.30.15 HRES HB 153 - Lands Proposed to Palmer Hay Flats Overview.pdf HRES 3/30/2015 1:00:00 PM
HB 153
3.30.15 HRES HB 153 - Summary of Conservation Lands Adjacent to Refuge.pdf HRES 3/30/2015 1:00:00 PM
HB 153
3.30.15 HRES HB 153 - Board of Game LOS.pdf HRES 3/30/2015 1:00:00 PM
HB 153
3.30.15 HRES HB 153 - Proposal 105 5 AAC 95.505.pdf HRES 3/30/2015 1:00:00 PM
HB 153
3.30.15 HRES HJR 18 Supporting Documents S.437.pdf HRES 3/30/2015 1:00:00 PM
3.30.15 HRES HJR 18 Supporting Documents-KUCB News Article.pdf HRES 3/30/2015 1:00:00 PM
3.30.15 HRES HJR 18 Supporting Documents-NPS Antiquities Act 1906.pdf HRES 3/30/2015 1:00:00 PM
3.30.15 HRES HJR 18 Supporting Documents-Deseret News Editorial.pdf HRES 3/30/2015 1:00:00 PM
3.30.15 HRES HJR 18 Supporting Documents-Legislation and Policy Article.pdf HRES 3/30/2015 1:00:00 PM
3.30.15 HRES HJR 18 Supporting Documents-S 437 News Release.pdf HRES 3/30/2015 1:00:00 PM
3.30.15 HRES HJR 18 Supporting Documents -NPCA National Monuments List.pdf HRES 3/30/2015 1:00:00 PM
3.30.15 HRES HJR 18 Sponsor Statement.pdf HRES 3/30/2015 1:00:00 PM
3.30.15 HRES HJR 18 Version H.pdf HRES 3/30/2015 1:00:00 PM
3.30.15 HRES Fishermen's Fund Advisory & Appeals Council - Alaska Statutes 23.35.010.pdf HRES 3/30/2015 1:00:00 PM
HRES Fisherman's Fund Advisory & Appeals Council - Donald Stiles Resume.pdf HRES 3/30/2015 1:00:00 PM
3.30.15 HRES HJR 18 Fiscal Note.pdf HRES 3/30/2015 1:00:00 PM
3.30.15 HRES HB 153 - Letter of Support Friends of the ANchorage Coastal Wildlife Rfuge.pdf HRES 3/30/2015 1:00:00 PM
HB 153
3.30.15 HRES CSHB 153 - Working draft.pdf HRES 3/30/2015 1:00:00 PM
HB 153