Legislature(1995 - 1996)

02/06/1995 03:35 PM RES

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
txt
                   SENATE RESOURCES COMMITTEE                                  
                        February 6, 1995                                       
                           3:35 P.M.                                           
                                                                               
 MEMBERS PRESENT                                                               
                                                                               
 Senator Loren Leman, Chairman                                                 
 Senator Drue Pearce, Vice Chairman                                            
 Senator Steve Frank                                                           
 Senator Rick Halford                                                          
 Senator Robin Taylor                                                          
 Senator Georgianna Lincoln                                                    
                                                                               
  COMMITTEE MEMBERS ABSENT                                                     
                                                                               
 Senator Lyman Hoffman                                                         
                                                                               
  COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                           
                                                                               
 CS FOR HOUSE JOINT RESOLUTION NO. 13 (O&G)                                    
 Urging the United States Congress to pass legislation to open the             
 coastal plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska, to              
 oil and gas exploration, development, and production.                         
                                                                               
 SENATE BILL NO. 42                                                            
 "An Act relating to restrictions attached to certain commercial               
 fisheries limited entry permits."                                             
                                                                               
  PREVIOUS ACTION                                                              
                                                                               
 HJR 13 - No previous action to record.                                        
                                                                               
 SB 42 - No previous action to record.                                         
                                                                               
  WITNESS REGISTER                                                             
                                                                               
 Sara Hannan                                                                   
 Alaska Environmental Lobby                                                    
 P.O. Box 22151                                                                
 Juneau, AK 99802                                                              
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Opposed HJR 13.                                        
                                                                               
 Representataive Mike Navarre                                                  
 State Capitol                                                                 
 Juneau, AK 99801-1182                                                         
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Sponsor of HJR 13.                                     
                                                                               
 Keith Burke                                                                   
 The Alliance                                                                  
 4220 B St., Suite 200                                                         
 Anchorage, AK 99513                                                           
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Supported CSHJR 13.                                    
 Marilyn Crockett, Ass't Executive Director                                    
 AOGA                                                                          
 121 W. Fireweed, Ste 207                                                      
 Anchorage, AK 99503                                                           
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Supported CSHJR 13.                                    
                                                                               
 Mary Solomon                                                                  
 P.O. Box 126                                                                  
 Ft. Yukon, AK 99740                                                           
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Supported amendment #1 to CSHJR 13.                    
                                                                               
 Sarah James                                                                   
 P.O. Box 51                                                                   
 Arctic Village, AK 99722                                                      
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Supported amendment #1 to CSHJR 13.                    
                                                                               
 Terry Hermach                                                                 
 P.O. box 2493                                                                 
 Valdez, AK 99686                                                              
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Opposed CSHJR 13.                                      
                                                                               
 David Van Den Berg                                                            
 Northern Alaska Environmental Center                                          
 218 Driveway                                                                  
 Fairbanks, AK 99701                                                           
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Opposed CSHJR 13.                                      
                                                                               
 Orville Huntington                                                            
 P.O. Box 85146                                                                
 Fairbanks, AK 99708                                                           
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Supported amendment #1.                                
                                                                               
 Ernest Erick                                                                  
 P.O. Box 6                                                                    
 Ventie, AK 99781                                                              
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Opposed HJR 13.                                        
                                                                               
 Isaac Tritt                                                                   
 Council Member                                                                
 P.O. Box 68                                                                   
 Arctic Village, AK 99722                                                      
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Opposed to CSHJR 13.                                   
                                                                               
 Patricia Salmon                                                               
 Chalkyitsik Village Council                                                   
 P.O. Box 53                                                                   
 Chalkyitsik, AK 99788                                                         
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Opposed CSHJR 13.                                      
                                                                               
 Bill Flor                                                                     
 Southeast Dungeness Crab Association (SEDCA)                                  
 P.O. Box 262                                                                  
 Petersburg, AK 99833                                                          
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Supported SB 42.                                       
                                                                               
 David Grebe                                                                   
 P.O. Box 564                                                                  
 Petersburg, AK 99833                                                          
  POSITIONS STATEMENT:   Commented on SB 42.                                   
                                                                               
 Ladd Norheim                                                                  
 P.O. Box 935                                                                  
 Petersburg, AK 99833                                                          
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Supported SB 42.                                       
                                                                               
 Frank Homan, Commissioner                                                     
 Commercial Fisheries Entry Commission                                         
 Department of Fish and Game                                                   
 8800 Glacier Hwy, #109                                                        
 Juneau, AK 99801                                                              
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Supported SB 42.                                       
                                                                               
  ACTION NARRATIVE                                                             
                                                                               
  TAPE 95-6, SIDE A                                                            
                                                                               
 Number 001                                                                    
 SRES 2/6/95                                                                   
                 HJR 13 ENDORSING ANWR LEASING                                
                                                                              
  CHAIRMAN LEMAN  called the Senate Resources Committee meeting to             
 order at 3:35 p.m. and announced HJR 13 to be up for consideration.           
  He said they would take Senator Lincoln's testimony at this time.            
 She said she would like to wait for a quorum, since she was going             
 to offer an amendment to the bill.                                            
                                                                               
 SENATOR LEMAN announced an at-ease 3:38 - 3:39 p.m. and set HJR 13            
 aside.                                                                        
 SRES 2/6/95                                                                   
            SB  42 RESTRICTED LIMITED ENTRY PERMITS                           
  SENATOR LEMAN announced SB 42 to be up for consideration.                   
                                                                               
 Number 57                                                                     
                                                                               
 SENATOR TAYLOR, sponsor, said the purpose of this legislation is to           
 deal with the moratorium the legislature imposed on dungeness crab            
 fishing 5 years ago which is due to run out this next year.  After            
 the moratorium comes off, there would be additional large amounts             
 of gear in the water which would cause further restrictions on                
 harvest and season within the commercial fishery by returning to a            
 derby style fishery.                                                          
                                                                               
 This legislation allows the Commercial Fisheries Entry Permit                 
 Commission (CFEC) to implement a new permit system for the crab               
 fishery.  It provides for a tiered system of permitting - at 100,             
 200, and 300 pots.                                                            
 SRES 2/6/95                                                                   
                                                                               
 SENATOR LEMAN said they would set SB 42 aside in the interests of             
 Senator Lincoln who would soon have to leave to attend a funeral              
 and announced HJR 13 to be before the Committee again.                        
                                                                               
 Number 123                                                                    
 SARAH HANNAN, Executive Director, Alaska Environmental Lobby,                 
 opposed CSHJR 13.  She said the economics of the Arctic National              
 Wildlife Refuge are marginal and limited.  At the most optimistic             
 predictions it would only present about 33 billion barrels of oil,            
 she said.                                                                     
                                                                               
 AEL believes there are other ways to reduce our dependence on                 
 foreign oil through endorsing a national energy policy, and opening           
 of the National Petroleum Reserve.  She noted that ANWR contains              
 the breeding grounds for the Porcupine Caribou herd.                          
                                                                               
 MS. HANNAN urged them to use the original version of HJR 13 which             
 articulates and acknowledges the unique and biological things in              
 ANWR and the people who are dependent on the Porcupine herd.                  
                                                                               
 Number 207                                                                    
                                                                               
 SENATOR LINCOLN said her testimony was on Amendment #1.  She said             
 in 1987 there was an international agreement between Canada and the           
 U.S. which established the Porcupine Caribou Technical Committee.             
 They found that there is calving of caribou from June 1 - 10.                 
 Fifty percent of mortality is within that first month.  The nursing           
 period June 11 - 30 is also important in this area.                           
                                                                               
 She said the language in the proposed amendment does not dilute the           
 intent of the resolution to support the development of ANWR.  It              
 recognizes the concern of the people it most directly affects.                
                                                                               
 She noted that there were a number of people who had left their               
 families to fly to town to testify regarding this issue.  She said            
 that Paula Terrel, her legislative aide, was available in Juneau to           
 answer questions.                                                             
                                                                               
 Number 354                                                                    
                                                                               
 SENATOR TAYLOR said he was involved in the first hearings that were           
 held on the original pipeline and all the "experts" that didn't               
 want to build the pipeline told the legislature they were going to            
 destroy the central arctic caribou herd if the pipeline were built.           
 According to the count today, he said, this caribou herd is seven             
 times larger than when the pipeline was built.                                
                                                                               
 SENATOR LINCOLN responded that it's not known how many times that             
 herd would have multiplied without the pipeline, but the intent of            
 the amendment is to ensure that caribou herd continues to be a                
 healthy one.  The amendment does not dilute the resolution; it more           
 fully states the subsistence point of view.                                   
                                                                               
 Number 376                                                                    
                                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE MIKE NAVARRE, sponsor, commented that for the first            
 time in our history our Congressional delegation is well suited to            
 promote Alaska's interests.  Also, the trade deficit is continuing            
 to grow and the import of oil contributes greatly to it.  Domestic            
 production is at a 40-year low and ANWR has the highest potential             
 of anywhere on the North American continent for hydrocarbon                   
 production.  He did not have any problem with the proposed                    
 amendment.  It is an issue that will be raised at the national                
 level whether it's referenced in the resolution or not.                       
                                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE NAVARRE explained that there were numerous reports,            
 studies, environmental impact statements, etc. that would have to             
 be made before any development takes place.                                   
                                                                               
 Number 436                                                                    
                                                                               
 BEVERLY WARD, ARCO Alaska, supported CSHJR 13.  ARCO's experience             
 with the Alaska oil fields has given them a thorough understanding            
 of the local environmental requirements and convinces them that the           
 ANWR can be explored and developed without causing harm to the                
 health and viability of the Refuge ecosystem, she said.  Technology           
 has advanced significantly since the original development of the              
 oil field in the Arctic.  Existence of productive and abundant                
 populations of birds and caribou throughout all the North Slope oil           
 fields is evidence of ARCO's ability to be good neighbors with all            
 current land users.                                                           
                                                                               
 Number 462                                                                    
 KEITH BURKE, The Alliance, said it is an organization of support              
 industries and is a major employer in rural Alaska.  They have no             
 objection to the amendment and encouraged passage of CSHJR 13.                
                                                                               
 MARILYN CROCKET, AOGA, supported CSHJR 13, because allowing oil and           
 gas exploration, development, and production on the ANWR coastal              
 plain would enhance national energy security, provide income for              
 both federal and state governments, and would generate jobs and               
 business opportunities for Alaskans, as well as residents in all 50           
 states.                                                                       
                                                                               
 MARY SOLOMON, Fort Yukon, said preserving the Porcupine Caribou               
 herd and its calving grounds was very important and urged adopting            
 amendment #1 of CSHJR 13.  She said the herd was needed to fulfill            
 the nourishment, spiritual, and cultural needs of her people.                 
                                                                               
 Number 518                                                                    
                                                                               
 SARAH JAMES, Arctic Village, said for as long as she could remember           
 they have tried to protect the Porcupine Caribou herd.  Her                   
 ancestors told her to respect the herd and said if they took care             
 of it, it would take care of them.  She said they are trying to               
 cooperate and be reasonable and this is a reasonable request.                 
                                                                               
 TERRY HERMACH, Valdez, opposed drilling in ANWR.  He asked them to            
 look forward to Alaska in 100 or 200 years and see what rapid                 
 development there would be.  There is increased pressure everywhere           
 and we need our park land protected, he said.  It will no longer be           
 wilderness once drilling begins.                                              
                                                                               
 Number 581                                                                    
                                                                               
 DAVID VAN DEN BERG, Fairbanks, opposed CSHJR 13.  He said the                 
 current fiscal crisis was not going to go away.                               
                                                                               
  TAPE 95-6, SIDE B                                                            
  Number 001                                                                   
                                                                               
 He thought the reason for this resolution was to create some                  
 revenue.  He commented that there was no mention of the Porcupine             
 Caribou herd and there are no stipulations to benefit Alaska.                 
                                                                               
 SENATOR HALFORD asked him when was the last time he was on the                
 coastal plain.  He answered, "last summer."                                   
                                                                               
 Number 563                                                                    
                                                                               
 ORVILLE HUNTINGTON, wildlife biologist, supported Amendment #1.               
 Without it, their (native) human rights and their religious freedom           
 to practice subsistence was being violated.                                   
                                                                               
 Number 555                                                                    
 ERNEST ERICK opposed CSHJR 13.  He wanted the land and animals to             
 be protected, because he eats the animals and that is part of his             
 life.  The people who develop the land don't eat the animals and              
 they need some protection.                                                    
                                                                               
 ISAAC TRITT said the Porcupine Caribou herd needed permanent                  
 protection.                                                                   
                                                                               
 PATRICIA SALMON said their lifestyle is in jeopardy if wildlife is            
 not protected.  Her people depend on the land and wild animals.               
                                                                               
 Number 485                                                                    
                                                                               
 Amendment #1 was not moved by any Committee member.                           
                                                                               
 SENATOR TAYLOR moved to pass CSHJR 13 with individual                         
 recommendations.  There were no objections and it was so ordered.             
 SRES - 2/6/95                                                                 
                                                                               
 SENATOR LEMAN announced SB 42 to be back before the Committee.                
                                                                               
 BILL FLOR, President, SEDCA, supported SB 42.  Because of the                 
 nature of the fishery, multiple units of gear, the type of limited            
 entry developed for salmon and herring presents many problems for             
 the crab fishery.  SB 42 is the next step after a moratorium was              
 declared on the crab fishery in 1994.                                         
                                                                               
 Number 430                                                                    
                                                                               
 DAVID GREBE, Petersburg, said something had to be done, but did not           
 know if a tiered system was the right way to go about it.                     
                                                                               
 SENATOR HALFORD asked if he supported permits, whether they were              
 tiered or not, being non-transferable and, thus, not accruing any             
 value.  MR. GREBE answered he thought that would be fair and that             
 was how he thought the whole limited entry system should be.                  
                                                                               
 Number 427                                                                    
                                                                               
 LADD NORHEIM, Petersburg, supported the tiered system, because he             
 had started out small and gradually built up to larger boats and a            
 larger number of pots and now he needs to have a large number of              
 pots to keep his business going.  He said the only other                      
 alternative is to go back to open access.  He supported CSHJR 13.             
                                                                               
 SENATOR TAYLOR asked him to comment on Senator Halford's question.            
 MR. NORHEIM said he agreed with non-transferrable permits.                    
                                                                               
 Number 390                                                                    
                                                                               
 FRANK HOMAN, Limited Entry Commissioner, supported a tiered pot               
 system and SB 42.  He said they have been meeting with fishermen              
 throughout Southeast during the moratorium and this idea is what              
 has grown out of those meetings.  The current system allows them to           
 limit the permit holder, but not the amount of effort within the              
 fishery.                                                                      
                                                                               
 MR. HOMAN explained that the Southeast Dungeness Crab fleet is very           
 diverse with large and small boats.  Currently there are about                
 45,000 pots.  A limited entry system establishes a 300-pot level.             
 So giving permits to the 300 or so fishermen could potentially put            
 90,000 pots in the water and this would be counterproductive to               
 conserving the resource.                                                      
                                                                               
 Taking no action before the January 1, 1996 deadline would return             
 it to open access which is not acceptable to the majority of the              
 fishermen.  He supported Senator Taylor's proposed amendment.                 
                                                                               
 SENATOR HALFORD said he wanted Homan's ideas on avoiding the huge             
 debt that was created in the industry when limited entry was                  
 established 20 years ago.  MR. HOMAN said it is an issue that comes           
 up regularly.  One of the reasons for "free transferability" was to           
 allow entry into a fishery at any stage.  The courts do not look              
 favorably upon a closed class type of system, because no one can              
 come in and there is no way to expand the level of participation.             
 He said he didn't see how this particular fishery could be isolated           
 from all the others.  SENATOR HALFORD said it could just be stated            
 in the statute that these permits cannot accrue any value and                 
 cannot be transferred anywhere except back to the state.  He noted            
 there was a lot of artificial application when someone can qualify            
 to buy one.                                                                   
                                                                               
 Number 262                                                                    
                                                                               
 SENATOR TAYLOR moved to delete on page 2, lines 22 - 23.  There was           
 discussion on the amendment, but no vote.                                     
                                                                               
 SENATOR LEMAN asked the way the bill is written now could a                   
 fisherman accumulate permits?  MR. HOMAN said you couldn't                    
 accumulate permits under this bill, but you can upgrade.                      
                                                                               
 SENATOR LEMAN asked if 100 pots was too high for the basic level.             
 MR. HOMAN said that was an example they were using, and it would              
 require some analysis of past fishing effort.  The number could be            
 set lower.                                                                    
 SENATOR LEMAN said they would hold the bill for further work and              
 adjourned the meeting at 5:05 p.m.                                            
                                                                               

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