Legislature(1993 - 1994)

04/18/1994 03:35 PM Senate RES

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
                   SENATE RESOURCES COMMITTEE                                  
                         April 18, 1994                                        
                           3:35 P.M.                                           
 MEMBERS PRESENT                                                               
 Senator Mike Miller, Chairman                                                 
 Senator Loren Leman, Vice Chairman                                            
 Senator Steve Frank                                                           
 Senator Drue Pearce                                                           
 Senator Al Adams                                                              
 Senator Dave Donley                                                           
 Senator Fred Zharoff                                                          
  MEMBERS ABSENT                                                               
  COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                           
 HOUSE BILL NO. 191                                                            
 "An Act relating to cost recovery by contractors who operate                  
 state-owned hatcheries."                                                      
 SENATE BILL NO. 341                                                           
 "An Act extending the termination date of the Alaska Tourism                  
 Marketing Council; and providing for an effective date."                      
 SENATE BILL NO. 193                                                           
 "An Act relating to unfair discrimination under group disability              
 insurance; and providing for an effective date."                              
 SCR 20 REOPENING ALASKA-JUNEAU MINE                                           
 SCHEDULED, BUT NOT HEARD THIS DAY                                             
  PREVIOUS ACTION                                                              
 HB 191 - No previous action to record.                                        
 SB 341 - See Labor & Commerce minutes dated 3/10/94.                          
 SB 193 - See Labor & Commerce minutes dated 3/24/94 and                       
 WITNESS REGISTER                                                              
 Bruce Bachen                                                                  
 Northern Southeast Regional Aquaculture Association                           
 1308 Sawmill Creek Rd.                                                        
 Sitka, Ak. 99835                                                              
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Supported HB 191.                                      
 Jeff Olsen, Operations Manager                                                
 Prince William Sound Aquaculture Corporation                                  
 P.O. Box 1110                                                                 
 Cordova, Ak. 99574                                                            
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Supported HB 191.                                      
 Jerry McCune, President                                                       
 United Fishermen of Alaska                                                    
 Juneau, Ak. 99801                                                             
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Supported HB 191 and HB 398.                           
 Ron Swanson, Director                                                         
 Division of Lands                                                             
 P.O. Box 107005                                                               
 Anchorage, Ak. 99510-7005                                                     
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Supported HB 398.                                      
 Lee Sharp                                                                     
 Aleutian East Borough                                                         
 426 L Street                                                                  
 Anchorage, Ak. 99501                                                          
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Supported HB 398.                                      
  ACTION NARRATIVE                                                             
  TAPE 94-37, SIDE A                                                           
 Number 001                                                                    
 CHAIRMAN MILLER called the Resources Committee meeting to order at            
 3:35 p.m. and announced  HB 191  (CONTRACTOR OPERATED STATE                   
 HATCHERIES) to be up for consideration.                                       
 REPRESENTATIVE WILLIAMS, sponsor, said many aquaculture                       
 associations have been cooperative about operating many hatcheries            
 under contract rather than see them close down for lack of state              
 funding.  The language in current law has caused some logistical              
 and financial problems for the contractors which has made it                  
 unfeasible to get some of the state's hatcheries under contract.              
 The law only allows cost recovery funds generated at the state                
 owned hatchery to be used for the operation of that facility, so              
 the funds cannot go to other facilities, if they have a bad year.             
 This places an unfair financial risk on groups we are trying to               
 convince to accept the responsibility of running our state                    
 hatcheries, REPRESENTATIVE WILLIAMS said.                                     
 Under this bill cost recovery money can flow in both directions               
 between the contractors who own the facilities and those contracted           
 to run facilities for the state.                                              
 This bill is supported by the aquaculture associations, the UFA,              
 and the ADF&G.  No one has expressed opposition to the bill, he               
 Number 80                                                                     
 BRUCE BACHEN, Northern Southeast Regional Aquaculture Association,            
 supported HB 191, because it allows them to have a single financial           
 plan for the corporation.  The strength of the overall program is             
 enhanced by diversification of all of the species that they raise             
 and all the sites they operate.  It's healthy to allow one project            
 to depend on another because of the fluctuations in the market.               
 Allowing revenues generated by cost recovery to be used for capital           
 construction is another good point of the bill, he said.                      
 JEFF OLSEN, Operations Manager, Prince William Sound Aquaculture              
 Corporation, read a letter from the Corporation in support of HB
 JERRY MCCUNE, President, United Fishermen of Alaska, supported HB
 191.  He said one of the problems is that Gulkana hatchery has no             
 cost recovery, so they have to take funds out of the existing                 
 hatchery.  This way they could move funds from hatchery to                    
 Number 173                                                                    
 SENATOR ADAMS moved to pass HB 191 from committee with individual             
 recommendations.  There were no objections and it was so ordered.             
 to be up for consideration.                                                   
 SENATOR ADAMS asked why there was a CS, since at the last meeting             
 they were just going to extend the date of the Tourism Marketing              
 SENATOR MILLER explained that the 25% was added, because he and               
 other people felt that the industry needed to do more in                      
 contributing into the marketing programs, especially in a time of             
 declining revenues.                                                           
 SENATOR ADAMS said he did not support that increase, but he did               
 support the extension of the Council.                                         
 SENATOR LEMAN moved to adopt the CS to SB 341.  SENATOR ADAMS                 
 objected.  SENATORS MILLER, LEMAN, FRANK, and PEARCE voted yes;               
 SENATOR ZHAROFF and ADAMS voted no; and the CS was adopted.                   
 SENATOR ZHAROFF noted that there was a two year extension instead             
 of four.  SENATOR MILLER said that this was so the legislature                
 could timely review their progress.                                           
 KAREN COWARD, Executive Director, Alaska Visitors Association,                
 supported the Alaska Tourism Marketing Council and did not support            
 the CS to SB 341.  The Council markets Alaska as a destination to             
 the Unites States and Canada.  Advertising rates in the Vacation              
 Planner have increased across the Board almost every year.  If they           
 continue to raise rates, some businesses have indicated they will             
 no longer be able to participate in the state's cooperative                   
 marketing program.  It's in the best interest of the state and the            
 population of Alaska to continue funding the Tourism Marketing.               
 SENATOR FRANK said he thought the match was budgeted at 22%.  MS.             
 COWARD said the match was budgeted at 20%.  This was based on a $7            
 million state program for last year.  This fiscal year it is $4.492           
 million.  She explained as the industry dollars go down, the                  
 program becomes less effective and their ability to attract                   
 advertisers in the Vacation Planner will go down.  Advertising is             
 where they get their matching money.                                          
 SENATOR PEARCE asked her to explain why Holland America was so far            
 out of line.  MS. COWARD said they often take 300 - 500 travel                
 agents through an inside passage trip.  They bring people up to               
 market Alaska generically, not just their tours.                              
 Number 310                                                                    
 SENATOR LEMAN moved to discharge CSSB 341 (RES) with individual               
 recommendations.  SENATOR ADAMS objected.  SENATORS MILLER, LEMAN,            
 PEARCE, and FRANK voted yes; SENATOR DONLEY, ADAMS, and ZHAROFF               
 voted no, and the bill passed from committee.                                 
 SENATOR MILLER announced  HB 398  (LAND CONVEYED TO & FROM                    
 MUNICIPALITIES) to be up for consideration.                                   
 DAVE KAMRATH, Legislative Aide to Representative Harvey Olberg,               
 read a sponsor statement.                                                     
 RON SWANSON, Director, Division of Land, supported the concepts               
 embodied in this bill.                                                        
 SENATOR DONLEY asked when the options occur if there was a mandated           
 conveyance.  MR. SWANSON said he understands that when the four               
 conditions have been met, the Commissioner has no authority, but to           
 convey to the municipality.  To eliminate a conflict, if there is             
 a greater public interest, he suggested using "may" instead of                
 SENATOR DONLEY said he supported using "may."                                 
 SENATOR PEARCE asked how many other situations exist that he knows            
 of where this bill could help.  MR. SWANSON said that Skagway is              
 the only one he is aware of.                                                  
 SENATOR ADAMS mentioned one other place.  He said he has an                   
 amendment requiring public hearings, making it optional, having it            
 be in the best interests of our state, and having no critical                 
 habitat in it.                                                                
 LEE SHARP, Aleutian East Borough, supported HB 398.                           
 JERRY MCCUNE, representing himself, said he is interested in this             
 bill because of the way it affects the small house owner where they           
 have built a little bit over, or the surveyors made a mistake and             
 their house is on state land by 2 or 3 inches or a couple feet.               
 This would give the municipalities a way to trade that land and               
 solve some problems for the home owner who can't get title to their           
 property right now and close their loans.                                     
 SENATOR DONLEY commented that it was a pretty big leap from not               
 being able to transfer to being mandated to transfer when                     
 conditions are met, whether or not it's in the public interest.               
 SENATOR MILLER noted that Senator Adams was working with that issue           
 before bringing the bill up again.                                            
 SENATOR MILLER adjourned the meeting at 4:15 p.m.                             

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