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30th Legislature(2017-2018)

Bill Text 30th Legislature


00 Enrolled HJR 29                                                                                                         
01 Urging the United States Congress to reauthorize the Secure Rural Schools and Community                                 
02 Self-Determination Act of 2000.                                                                                         
03                                          _______________                                                                
04 BE IT RESOLVED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF ALASKA:                                                             
05      WHEREAS, in 1908, the United States Congress enacted 16 U.S.C. 500 (National                                       
06 Forest Receipts Program), which required 25 percent of annual income earned from activities                             
07 on national forest land to be shared with states for distribution to cities and boroughs in which                       
08 the land is located for the benefit of education and roads; and                                                         
09      WHEREAS, in 1986, changes in the approach to managing our national forests                                         
10 seriously curtailed the ability of forest communities to harvest forest products and resulted in                        
11 steep declines in forest revenue paid to affected communities; and                                                      
12      WHEREAS, in the early 1990s, the United States Congress recognized that the                                        
13 decision to secure and retain land in federal ownership would deprive the communities in                                
14 which the land is located of revenue otherwise received if the land were in private ownership;                          
15 and                                                                                                                     
16      WHEREAS the enactment of P.L. 106-393, 16 U.S.C. 500 note (Secure Rural                                            
17 Schools and Community Self-Determination Act of 2000), temporarily stabilized national                                  
01 forest revenue payments to forest communities and replaced much needed financial support                                
02 for education and roads; and                                                                                            
03      WHEREAS the National Forest Service controls approximately 22,000,000 acres of                                     
04 land in the state; and                                                                                                  
05      WHEREAS many of the state's rural communities are nestled in the Tongass National                                  
06 Forest and the Chugach National Forest; and                                                                             
07      WHEREAS there continues to be little privately owned land in those forest                                          
08 communities on which to pursue economic development activities, and the communities                                     
09 therefore remain largely dependent on revenue generated from national forests; and                                      
10      WHEREAS the Secure Rural Schools and Community Self-Determination Act of                                           
11 expired on September 3, 2015, and has not been permanently reauthorized; and                                            
12      WHEREAS the United States Congress temporarily extended the Secure Rural                                           
13 Schools and Community Self-Determination Act of 2000 for federal fiscal years 2017 and                                  
14 2018; and                                                                                                               
15      WHEREAS education is one of the critical services supported by the Secure Rural                                    
16 Schools and Community Self-Determination Act of 2000; and                                                               
17      WHEREAS failure to permanently reauthorize the Secure Rural Schools and                                            
18 Community Self-Determination Act of 2000 will have a devastating effect on many forest                                  
19 communities across America, especially communities in this state, and will severely affect the                          
20 public education of students living in those forest communities;                                                        
21      BE IT RESOLVED that the Alaska State Legislature respectfully requests that the                                    
22 United States Congress pass and the President sign into law a long-term reauthorization of the                          
23 Secure Rural Schools and Community Self-Determination Act of 2000; and be it                                            
24      FURTHER RESOLVED that the Alaska State Legislature encourages the United                                           
25 States Congress to pass H.R. 2340 or S. 1027 to extend, or legislation to permanently                                   
26 reauthorize, the Secure Rural Schools and Community Self-Determination Act of 2000.                                     
27      COPIES of this resolution shall be sent to the Honorable Donald J. Trump, President                                
28 of the United States; the Honorable Sonny Perdue, United States Secretary of Agriculture; the                           
29 Honorable Betsy DeVos, United States Secretary of Education; the Honorable Lisa                                         
30 Murkowski, Chair of the Energy and Natural Resources Committee of the U.S. Senate; the                                  
31 Honorable Dan Sullivan, U.S. Senator, and the Honorable Don Young, U.S. Representative,                                 
01 members of the Alaska delegation in Congress; and all other members of the 115th United                                 
02 States Congress.                                                                                                        
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