Legislature(1993 - 1994)
04/14/1993 03:43 PM RES
* first hearing in first committee of referral
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
SENATE RESOURCES COMMITTEE April 14, 1993 3:43 p.m. MEMBERS PRESENT Senator Mike Miller, Chairman Senator Loren Leman, Vice Chairman Senator Steve Frank Senator Drue Pearce Senator Dave Donley MEMBERS ABSENT Senator Al Adams Senator Fred Zharoff COMMITTEE CALENDAR CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 213(RES)(title am) "An Act prohibiting the commissioner of natural resources from permanently classifying state land, water, or land and water so that mining, mineral entry and location, mineral prospecting, and mineral leasing are precluded or are designated an incompatible use without an act of the legislature if the area involved contains more than 640 contiguous acres except in certain situations; and providing for an effective date." HOUSE JOINT RESOLUTION NO. 28 Supporting increased access near Mt. McKinley through establishment of a visitor activity area at Kantishna. HOUSE BILL NO. 133 "An Act amending the definition of `value' for purposes of administration of fisheries taxes; and providing for an effective date." PREVIOUS SENATE COMMITTEE ACTION HB 213 - No previous action to record. HJR 28 - See Transportation minutes dated 3/23/93. HB 133 - No previous action to record. WITNESS REGISTER Jack Phelps, Legislative Aide % Representative Pete Kott State Capitol Juneau, Alaska 99811-1182 POSITION STATEMENT: Commented on HB 213 Representative Tom Brice State Capitol Juneau, Alaska 99811-1182 POSITION STATEMENT: Sponsor of HJR 28. Chad Coursey Alaska Wilderness Resource Tourism Agency P.O. Box 2553 Valdez, Alaska 99686 POSITION STATEMENT: Opposed HJR 28. Lenore Sappington Denali Citizens Council 2842 Bass Anchorage, Alaska 99507 POSITION STATEMENT: Opposed HJR 28. Dan Ashbrook P.O. Box 149 Denali Park, Alaska 99755 POSITION STATEMENT: Supported HJR 28. Joseph Fields P.O. Box 71047 Fairbanks, Alaska 99707 POSITION STATEMENT: Opposed HJR 28. Valerie Mundt P.O. Box 84608 Fairbanks, Alaska 99708 POSITION STATEMENT: Supported HJR 28. Irene Morris Alaska Environmental Lobby P.O. Box 22151 Juneau, Alaska 99801 POSITION STATEMENT: Opposed HJR 28. Senator Dave Donley State Capitol Juneau, Alaska 99811-1182 POSITION STATEMENT: Supported HJR 28. Clyde Stoltzfus Department of Transportation and Public Facilities 3132 Channel Dr. Juneau, Alaska 99801 POSITION STATEMENT: Supported HJR 28. Connel Murray, Director Division of Tourism Department of Commerce and Economic Development P.O. Box 110801 Juneau, Alaska 99811-0801 POSITION STATEMENT: Supported HJR 28. Representative Carl Moses State Capitol Juneau, Alaska 99811-1182 POSITION STATEMENT: Commented on HB 133. Paul Dick, Juneau Operation Income and Excise Audit Division Department of Revenue P.O. Box 110420 Juneau, Alaska 99811-0420 POSITION STATEMENT: Commented on HB 133. Jerry McCune United Fishermen of Alaska 211 4th Street #112 Juneau, Alaska 99801 POSITION STATEMENT: Commented on HB 133. ACTION NARRATIVE TAPE 93-21, SIDE A Number 001 SENATOR MILLER called the Resources Committee meeting to order at 3:43 p.m. and announced HB 213 (LIMIT ADMINISTRATIVE LAND CLOSURES) to be up for consideration. JACK PHELPS, Legislative Aide for Representative Kott, said the Alaska Minerals Commission and the Economic Mini Summit both supported this bill. SENATOR MILLER closed the hearing on HB 213 and said it was his intention to take up the bill again on Monday. SENATOR MILLER announced HJR 28 (SUPPORT KANTISHNA AREA TOURISM DEVELOP'T) to be up for consideration. REPRESENTATIVE BRICE, prime sponsor of HJR 28, explained this resolution basically supports the concept of having the state establish a rail utility corridor that it can lease to the private sector for the development of an electric rail transportation system. Currently over 400,000 people are being turned away from Denali Park who would like to go in. This corridor would provide the access. It is environmentally sound and is contained access. CHAD COURSEY, Alaska Wilderness Recreation and Tourism Association, read testimony from Nancy Lethcoe, President. The testimony opposed HJR 28, because it is an anti-small business bill masquerading as tourism development. He also opposed development of a visitor activity area and the establishment of a utility corridor into Kantishna by private corporations. Number 174 LENORE SAPPINGTON, Denali Citizens Council, strongly opposed HJR 28, because a road entrance from the north side would not be good for tourism, wildlife, or visitors. The Kantishna Resource Management Plan, released in 1990, said commercial development was not good for the park. HJR 28 is not an environmentally sensitive plan. MS. SAPPINGTON said there are rumors that people have been turned away from the park which is simply not true. She suggested the Finance Committee look at how much a new corridor would really cost. SENATOR MILLER said the co-chairmen of Finance would be looking at that. Number 280 DAN ASHBROOK, Denali Park, supported HJR 28. He said the tourist trade is just going to increase and the road is saturated now. Number 303 JOSEPH FIELDS, Kantishna Group, Incorporated, supported HJR 28. He said Mount Denali should be accessible. There should also be a study of tourism and its impact to the land. Tourism should have the same standing as the other resources of the state, MR. FIELDS said. Number 342 VALERIE MUNDT, member of Fairbanks Chamber of Commerce, supported HJR 28 and development in the Kantishna area by the private sector. She said there is not a watershed in the area that hasn't been mined. It is not yet a wilderness. Every opportunity there has developed from mining. MS. MUNDT suggested changing "rail utility corridor" to a "transportation corridor." IRENE MORRIS, Alaska Environmental Lobby, opposed HJR 28, because it advocates aggressive pursuit of a new access route and more development in Denali Park's Kantishna area. She said DOT is currently conducting a location study for improved access to Kantishna. MS. MORRIS stated the proposed railroad would cost $189 million dollars. She asked how they would do that without public money and who would pay to maintain and repair it? SENATOR MILLER asked if the Alaska Environmental Lobby was against a southern entrance. MS. MORRIS said they were not against it. SENATOR MILLER said that many environmental groups opposed southern development. Number 424 SENATOR DONLEY asked if there could be essentially a circuit of traffic from south to north. He asked what was so sensitive in that area where mining had been a thriving industry. MS. MORRIS said she would have to get back to them on that. Number 439 CLYDE STOLTZFUS, Special Assistant, Department of DOT, supported HJR 28 and access to Kantishna, in general. He said they are currently doing a location and environmental study for access from the Parks Highway to McGrath, with access into Kantishna. This resolution would not change their activity. That is why there is a $0 fiscal note. They will look at both road and rail access. MR. STOTLTZFUS said there are 9 - 10 RS2477's in the northern part of the Park. That means there has been a lot of mining activity in the northern part of the Park - a lot more than in the southern part. So it is actually more environmentally benign to go into the northern part of the Park. Number 459 CONNEL MURRAY, Director of Tourism, supported the general concepts in HJR 28. He said Alaska is getting more and more independent visitors (as opposed to those who come on a "package deal"). They don't have advance arrangements made for them. Based on mail and telephone calls to the Division of Tourism, they know there are many thousands of visitors who come to Alaska with the express purpose of visiting Denali who cannot get into the park. The people who do go are jammed into a narrow and overcrowded corridor. The addition of a Kantishna access could double the number of people who could enjoy the Park. SENATOR MILLER thanked everyone for their testimony and closed the public hearing on HJR 28. SENATOR MILLER announced HB 133 (DEFINITION OF VALUE FOR FISHERIES TAX) to be up for consideration. SENATOR MILLER announced a short recess and when they came back to order REPRESENTATIVE MOSES explained HB 133. SENATOR LEMAN wanted assurance the cost of transportation to a distant cannery would not be subject to the tax. PAUL DICK, Department of Revenue, said they are looking at the price actually paid to the fisherman. He clarified that he would look to see what kind of deliveries were normal practice before allowing the exemption. TAPE 93-21, SIDE B Number 580 REPRESENTATIVE MOSES said quite often fishermen are paid more for cannery delivery. The fisherman would not make the delivery unless there was some profit. But they should pay the tax based on the price at the point of delivery. JERRY MCCUNE, United Fishermen of Alaska, said all they want to do is get the value of the product when it is sold. They want the ability to tax the bonuses, ice, etc. a fishermen gets as the complete value of the fish he sells. The current law is unclear on this issue. SENATOR MILLER closed the public hearing on HB 133, stating that it would be back before the committee at its next meeting. He adjourned the meeting at 4:40 p.m.