Legislature(1993 - 1994)

02/09/1993 11:15 AM O&G

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
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              SENATE SPECIAL COMMITTEE ON OIL & GAS                            
                        February 9, 1993                                       
                           11:15 a.m.                                          
                                                                               
  MEMBERS PRESENT                                                              
                                                                               
  Senator Rick Halford                                                         
  Senator Bert Sharp                                                           
  Senator Judith Salo                                                          
                                                                               
  MEMBERS ABSENT                                                               
                                                                               
  Senator Loren Leman, Chairman                                                
  Senator Al Adams                                                             
                                                                               
  COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                           
                                                                               
  SENATE BILL NO. 81                                                           
  "An  Act repealing  the 65-day  time limit  for  approval or                 
  disapproval of a proposed oil  discharge contingency plan by                 
  the Department of  Environmental Conservation; and providing                 
  for an effective date."                                                      
                                                                               
  SENATE BILL NO. 75                                                           
  "An  Act  relating  to  the  reporting of  certain  steering                 
  malfunctions,   losses  of   power,   or  other   situations                 
  significantly affecting  the seaworthiness of  tank vessels;                 
  and providing for an effective date."                                        
                                                                               
  PREVIOUS ACTION                                                              
                                                                               
  SB 81 - No previous action to record.                                        
                                                                               
  SB 75 - No previous action to record.                                        
                                                                               
  WITNESS REGISTER                                                             
                                                                               
  Steve Porter                                                                 
  ARCO Alaska, Inc.                                                            
  P.O. Box 100360                                                              
  Anchorage, Alaska 99510-0360                                                 
  POSITION STATEMENT:  Commented on SB 81.                                     
                                                                               
  Janice Adair, Assistant Commissioner                                         
  Department of Environmental Conservation                                     
  410 Willoughby Ave., Suite 301                                               
  Juneau, Alaska 99801-1795                                                    
  POSITION STATEMENT:  Supported SB 81.                                        
                                                                               
  Russell Heath, Executive Director                                            
  Alaska Environmental Lobby                                                   
  P.O. Box 22151                                                               
  Juneau, Alaska 99802                                                         
  POSITION STATEMENT:  Supported SB 81 and SB 75.                              
                                                                               
                                                                               
  Mike Conway, Director                                                        
  Spill Prevention and Response                                                
  Department of Environmental Conservation                                     
  410 Willoughby, Suite 105                                                    
  Juneau, Alaska 99801-1795                                                    
  POSITION STATEMENT:  Supported SB 75.                                        
                                                                               
  Ray Gillespie                                                                
  Gillespie & Associates                                                       
  9478 Riverbend Court                                                         
  Juneau, Alaska 99801                                                         
  POSITION STATEMENT:  Supported SB 75.                                        
                                                                               
  Jerry Luckhaupt                                                              
  Legislative Legal Counsel                                                    
  130 Seward Street                                                            
  Juneau, Alaska 99801-2105                                                    
  POSITION STATEMENT:  Commented on SB 75.                                     
                                                                               
  ACTION NARRATIVE                                                             
                                                                               
  TAPE 93-1, SIDE A                                                            
  Number 001                                                                   
  SENATOR HALFORD called the Special Committee on Oil  and Gas                 
  meeting to order  at 11:15 a.m.  and announced SB 81  REPEAL                 
  65-DAY DEADLINE: OIL SPILL PLANS to be up for consideration.                 
                                                                               
  STEVE PORTER, ARCO, said this bill  comes from a grass roots                 
  effort from spill  planners, the agencies  - the people  who                 
  review plans  on a  daily basis.   They  have problems  with                 
  trying to  coordinate the Alaska Coastal  Management Program                 
  with  the  Alaska Department  of  Environmental Conservation                 
  Spill review  authority.  Deleting  the 65 day  provision in                 
  the statute does  not allow  for a stopping  process.   They                 
  recommend reviewing  DEC regulations to design a process for                 
  the interior and coordinate it  with the Alaska Coastal Zone                 
  program.                                                                     
                                                                               
  Number 57                                                                    
                                                                               
  JANICE  ADAIR,  Department  of  Environmental  Conservation,                 
  agreed with Mr. Porter's  testimony.  She said they  do want                 
  to make sure the  15 contingency plans from the  interior of                 
  Alaska are  not subject to  CZM review and  have the  65 day                 
  requirement so DEC has to take  some action during that time                 
  period.                                                                      
                                                                               
  SENATOR SALO asked if  65 days could be done  in regulation.                 
  MS. ADAIR said that it already was in regulation.                            
                                                                               
  Number 77                                                                    
                                                                               
                                                                               
  RUSSELL HEATH, Alaska Environmental  Lobby, supported SB  81                 
  because  it  would improve  the  ability  for both  the  oil                 
  companies  and  the  public to  review  the  oil contingency                 
  plans.                                                                       
  SENATOR HALFORD closed the hearing on SB 81 and announced SB
  75  REPORTING  OIL   TANKER  MALFUNCTIONS   to  be  up   for                 
  consideration.                                                               
                                                                               
  SENATOR PEARCE, sponsor of SB 75, requires the operator of a                 
  vessel  carrying petroleum  products  to  notify either  the                 
  Coast  Guard  or the  proper  state authority  whenever they                 
  experience a  malfunction lasting more than 60 minutes.  She                 
  introduced the bill after reading a preliminary report about                 
  the  sequence of events that led to  the recent wreck of the                 
  Braer  off  the Shetland  Islands  where the  ship's captain                 
  spent a considerable amount of time trying to get permission                 
  from the owners to send an SOS.                                              
                                                                               
  She said that maritime insurance law is so structured that a                 
  large percentage of the cargo and  the boat itself go to the                 
  salvaging boat.  This causes owners  to delay sending an SOS                 
  until the last possible moment.                                              
                                                                               
  She does  not intend for  action to necessarily  take place,                 
  but it would give  the Governor the authority to  declare an                 
  emergency if there were a severe case.  It is not her intent                 
  to include, because of the definition of tank vessel that is                 
  used, the  ships coming out of Skagway  and ships out of the                 
  Red Dog Mine.                                                                
                                                                               
  SENATOR PEARCE  said she picked  the 60 minute  figure after                 
  interviews with boat owners and operators.                                   
                                                                               
  Number 207                                                                   
                                                                               
  SENATOR  SALO  asked  how  she  felt  about  the  DEC  being                 
  designated  as the state  agency.   SENATOR PEARCE  said she                 
  hadn't had an opportunity to talk if over with Mr. Conway or                 
  Ms.  Adair.   She  doesn't  have  a problem  with  DEC being                 
  defined as the agency.   She said she would  want the person                 
  in  charge of  the vessel  to do  the reporting and  in most                 
  cases this would be the captain of the vessel.                               
                                                                               
  SENATOR SALO said she understood section  (c) of the bill as                 
  taking care of the 5th concern in the DEC position paper.                    
                                                                               
  SENATOR HALFORD  asked what  definition was  being used  for                 
  within state  waters.  SENATOR  PEARCE said using  that term                 
  allowed flexibility to go out to 200 miles.                                  
                                                                               
  Number 296                                                                   
                                                                               
                                                                               
  MIKE  CONWAY,  Director,  Division of  Spill  Prevention and                 
  Response,  supported SB 75  with DEC's suggested amendments.                 
  They thought 60  minutes might be too much  time to report a                 
  vessel casualty in some areas.                                               
                                                                               
  SENATOR HALFORD asked him if they  could go out to 200 miles                 
  rather than just 3 miles.   MR. CONWAY couldn't answer that.                 
  The  reporting requirements  are  more  stringent  within  3                 
  miles.                                                                       
                                                                               
  SENATOR PEARCE said  that the  portions of OPA  90 that  are                 
  going into effect this  month cover waters out to  200 miles                 
  (Economic Exclusive Zone).                                                   
                                                                               
  Number 355                                                                   
                                                                               
  SENATOR PEARCE said it was her intent to capture barges that                 
  were carrying fuel  and she thought they should  decide what                 
  size  they wanted to include  since there were small vessels                 
  carrying fuel to rural Alaska.                                               
                                                                               
  Number 367                                                                   
                                                                               
  RUSSELL HEATH,  Alaska Environmental Lobby, supported  SB 75                 
  saying it looks like a low  cost measure which might prevent                 
  a disaster.  He  encouraged the committee to replace  the 60                 
  minute time limitation with "as soon as possible."                           
                                                                               
  Number 373                                                                   
                                                                               
  SENATOR  SALO  asked what  size  limitation for  barges they                 
  should  consider.    MR.  HEATH  said  he  didn't  know  how                 
  effective communications  were on  the river  and he  didn't                 
  know what regulations govern barges on internal waters.                      
                                                                               
  SENATOR PEARCE commented that if the Governor's Northern Sea                 
  Route is  successfully promoted  that there  would be a  lot                 
  more traffic  up the  west coast.   She  did not intend  for                 
  small   vessels   to  have   to   buy  more   equipment  for                 
  communications.                                                              
                                                                               
  Number 400                                                                   
                                                                               
  RAY GILLESPIE, representing a group  of refined fuel product                 
  distributors, offered to  work with staff to  identify those                 
  areas  that would  be appropriate  for a  capacity  limit or                 
  geographic  areas  that  would  be  appropriate  to  make  a                 
  threshold requirement for reporting.                                         
                                                                               
  Number 415                                                                   
                                                                               
  SENATOR SHARP said he hoped  to pursue information excluding                 
  refined products up to a certain vessel size.                                
                                                                               
                                                                               
  Number 428                                                                   
                                                                               
  JERRY LUCKHAUPT, drafter of SB 75, said he deliberately used                 
  the terms "waters  of the state"  because it has an  obscure                 
  definition.   He  used  this  wording  so  they  could  have                 
  jurisdiction  out  to  200  miles.     The  extra  reporting                 
  requirement on docking  and filling the  form for DEC was  a                 
  way to encourage compliance out to 200 miles.                                
                                                                               
  Number 453                                                                   
                                                                               
  SENATOR HALFORD said they would hold  SB 75 for further work                 
  and adjourned the meeting at 11:45 a.m.                                      
                                                                               

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