Legislature(2001 - 2002)

02/28/2001 03:20 PM L&C

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
HCR 1 - STATEWIDE COMP ENERGY PLAN TASK FORCE                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  MURKOWSKI  announced the  next  order  of business,  HOUSE                                                               
CONCURRENT  RESOLUTION NO.  1, Relating  to  establishing a  Task                                                               
Force  on a  Statewide  Comprehensive Energy  Plan.   [Officially                                                               
before the  committee was CSHCR  1(CRA), but packets  contained a                                                               
proposed committee substitute  (CS), version 22-LS0307\J, Cramer,                                                               
2/27/01, which was addressed in the sponsor statement.]                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Number 0792                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE   ETHAN  BERKOWITZ,   Alaska  State   Legislature,                                                               
sponsor  of  HCR  1,  explained  that  Alaska  does  not  have  a                                                               
statewide  energy  plan.   At  the  national  level, there  is  a                                                               
conversation  about   an  energy  plan,  which   members  of  the                                                               
[congressional] delegation  are involved in.   He believes  it is                                                               
an opportune time to put [an energy plan] together in Alaska.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE   BERKOWITZ  expressed   the  intent   of  melding                                                               
together  components  from existing  proposals.    He noted  that                                                               
AIDEA [Alaska  Industrial Development  and Export  Authority] and                                                               
the Denali  Commission have been  working with a three-year  - or                                                               
longer -  program to come up  with various components.   There is                                                               
an opportunity  now to accelerate  the process, he  told members,                                                               
and  perhaps to  have  an impact  with what  happens  with a  gas                                                               
pipeline, before anything is actually built.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
Number 0684                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BERKOWITZ  asked  that the  committee  adopt  the                                                               
proposed CS, Version J.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG  made a  motion to  adopt Version  J [22-                                                               
LS0307\J, Cramer, 2/27/01] as a work draft.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE MEYER  specified that  he wanted  to speak  to the                                                               
version  approved by  the House  Community  and Regional  Affairs                                                               
Standing Committee [CSHCR 1(CRA)].                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BERKOWITZ explained  that Version  J begins  with                                                               
the   incorporation  of   a  technical   amendment  proposed   by                                                               
Representative  Meyer.   Version  J  has 12  people  on the  task                                                               
force.   It removes one  Senator and one Representative  from the                                                               
task force, and  deletes any reference to  caucus affiliation; it                                                               
removes  someone from  the Regulatory  Commission  of Alaska  and                                                               
adds  someone  from the  Alaska  Public  Interest Research  Group                                                               
(AkPIRG);  it replaces  the Alaska  Federation  of Natives  (AFN)                                                               
member with someone from the  Alaska Village Electric Cooperative                                                               
(AVEC);  it also  deletes [the  members appointed  by the  Alaska                                                               
Truckers  Association  and the  president  of  the University  of                                                               
Alaska],  adding  instead  [a member  appointed  by]  the  Alaska                                                               
Conservation Alliance.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Number 0546                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE MEYER  objected to  adopting Version  J as  a work                                                               
draft.   He noted that  Representatives Halcro and  Berkowitz are                                                               
members  of the  House  Community and  Regional Affairs  Standing                                                               
Committee  [which   Representative  Meyer  co-chairs];   in  that                                                               
committee, members spent quite a bit  of time going over the task                                                               
force members.  He commented:                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
     We thought  that raising it  from 13 to 15,  and adding                                                                    
     one  from AIDEA  and one  from Denali  [Commission] was                                                                    
     important, to keep the sense  of synergy and of all the                                                                    
     different studies that were going on.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     But  what's happened  here is  that we're  removing the                                                                    
     trucking association, which I  think the committee felt                                                                    
     it  was important  to keep  a  business perspective  on                                                                    
     there.  The reason why  I think we wanted two appointed                                                                    
     from the Senate and two from  the House was so that you                                                                    
     would have both ... a  "D" and an "R" representation on                                                                    
     this task force.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
     And we're  removing one from  the Alaska  Federation of                                                                    
     Natives  and  replacing  it  with  the  Alaska  Village                                                                    
     Electric  Cooperative; ...  frankly,  I  don't know  if                                                                    
     that's good  or not.   I  would like  to hear  from ...                                                                    
     Representative Morgan,  who was co-chair of  the [House                                                                    
     Community and Regional  Affairs Standing] Committee, or                                                                    
     at  least somebody  from rural  Alaska,  as to  whether                                                                    
     that's acceptable or not.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Number 0454                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  HALCRO  suggested  that whenever  the  number  of                                                               
politicians involved can be reduced,  the more productive [a task                                                               
force] will be.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  MEYER agreed.    He said,  however,  that if  the                                                               
makeup of  the [task force]  is going to  be changed this  much -                                                               
reducing  the  number from  15  to  12,  then adding  the  Alaska                                                               
Conservation  Alliance  by  taking   off  the  Alaska  [Trucking]                                                               
Association - it warrants more discussion.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Number 0382                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE   ROKEBERG  said   he   himself  has   substantial                                                               
objections to  the makeup of the  [task force] but is  willing to                                                               
adopt the proposed CS and talk about it.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE MEYER removed his objection.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
Number 0355                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR MURKOWSKI  announced that with  the objection  removed, the                                                               
proposed CS [Version J] was before the committee.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE BERKOWITZ told members he  isn't a big fan of task                                                               
forces or  resolutions.  However,  there aren't many  other tools                                                               
in  putting together  a  long-range  plan.   He  suggested it  is                                                               
healthy to make  this as unwieldy as possible and  to bring in as                                                               
disparate a group of people as possible.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE   BERKOWITZ   spoke  to   Representative   Meyer's                                                               
concerns.   He  pointed out  that in  all likelihood,  the person                                                               
"sacrificed"  from  the House  minority  would  be himself.    He                                                               
restated that  smaller is  better, generally.   As  for replacing                                                               
the AFN representative with one from  AVEC, the intent is to have                                                               
a person with  direct experience with some of the  needs of rural                                                               
Alaska; to  his knowledge, there  is little  disagreement between                                                               
AVEC and AFN  on this particular issue.  In  addition, he wants a                                                               
level of technical  expertise, and some people at  AVEC have been                                                               
involved with policy formulation regarding energy for some time.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BERKOWITZ pointed  out that  AVEC, ARECA  [Alaska                                                               
Rural  Electric Cooperative  Association], and  AOGA [Alaska  Oil                                                               
and  Gas Association]  are business-related.   Furthermore,  ASTF                                                               
[Alaska   Science   and   Technology  Foundation],   the   Denali                                                               
Commission,  and  AIDEA could  appoint  a  businessperson.   Thus                                                               
there  is plenty  of opportunity  for the  business community  to                                                               
weigh in.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE BERKOWITZ  emphasized that  at any  point, anybody                                                               
from around  the state can  participate in  this task force.   He                                                               
doesn't intend  for it to  be exclusive or an  academic exercise.                                                               
However,  having  these  "entry  ports"  for  different  interest                                                               
groups around  the state will cause  more people to weigh  in and                                                               
to cooperate in [the policy formulation].                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BERKOWITZ   explained  that  AkPIRG,   which  has                                                               
expressed  an  interest  in participating,  is  the  only  direct                                                               
consumer representative  that he knows of  in the state.   As for                                                               
the  Alaska  Conservation  Alliance,  the  model  that  has  been                                                               
followed with most successful industrial  development is to bring                                                               
in,  at  the policy  formation  stage,  people "who  might  start                                                               
shooting at the plan later,"  in order to minimize discord later.                                                               
In addition,  bringing different groups of  people together early                                                               
sometimes results in a better idea.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Number 0096                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  ROKEBERG commended  Representative Berkowitz  for                                                               
the  "light  version,"   with  a  zero  fiscal   note  and  fewer                                                               
legislative   members   in   order    to   invite   more   public                                                               
participation.  He  offered his opinion, however,  that the ratio                                                               
of public  representatives to private representatives  is nine to                                                               
one, because ARECA mainly  represents electrical cooperatives and                                                               
AVEC is a cooperative.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
TAPE 01-27, SIDE A                                                                                                              
Number 0001                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG  said there  are no major  consumers such                                                               
as LNG  [liquefied natural  gas] distributors  or representatives                                                               
from the mining or transportation  sectors.  Although he believes                                                               
AkPIRG  would be  a  good  member, he  said,  it misrepresents  a                                                               
legislative function to say that  legislators don't represent the                                                               
consumers.      The  makeup   should   be   looked  at   further,                                                               
Representative  Rokeberg  asserted,  since   he  believes  it  is                                                               
overweighted   to    public-sector   people;   to    him,   every                                                               
representative except  the AOGA person has  a public orientation,                                                               
including the  legislators, who most  often come from  the public                                                               
sector.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BERKOWITZ  emphasized  the  difficulty  of  being                                                               
effective with even 12 people.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
Number 0130                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  ROKEBERG said  he understands  that, but  doesn't                                                               
see  what the  Alaska Municipal  League, for  example, has  to do                                                               
with energy,  other than  as a  consumer.   An energy  plan could                                                               
include anything  from "green"  power - such  as wind,  solar, or                                                               
hydroelectric  energy  -  to  coal,   oil,  gas,  or  shallow-gas                                                               
methane; those  all require engineering elements.   He emphasized                                                               
his belief that there is an imbalance.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BERKOWITZ   responded  that  some  of   the  most                                                               
impressive  wind-power  efforts  are in  Kotzebue,  and  Kotzebue                                                               
Electric is  a member  of ARECA  and AVEC.   Therefore,  there is                                                               
access to that kind of engineering  skill.  He indicated he would                                                               
welcome  suggestions   from  Representative   Rokeberg,  however,                                                               
regarding other task force members.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Number 0239                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG replied that  he would replace the Alaska                                                               
Municipal  League,  the  ASTF, and  the  Denali  Commission  with                                                               
private-sector-oriented   representatives   who   could   provide                                                               
expertise regarding where  the energy comes from and  how it will                                                               
be distributed.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE BERKOWITZ  pointed out that the  Denali Commission                                                               
is working  on a rural  energy plan; they have  engineers working                                                               
for them,  and a  likely candidate would  be Charlie  Walls (ph).                                                               
In addition,  the hope is  that ASTF  could supply a  member with                                                               
technical expertise, which could  be specified.  Furthermore, the                                                               
Alaska  Municipal  League can  reach  a  great number  of  people                                                               
fairly quickly.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BERKOWITZ   said  he  was  open   to  suggestions                                                               
regarding transportation,  for example,  but emphasized  that the                                                               
federal commission has just a handful  of people.  It is critical                                                               
to start this  process and put a  plan down, even if  it is later                                                               
modified.   If a [task  force] is too  big, nothing will  come of                                                               
it.                                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Number 0397                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG  said he doesn't disagree  with that, and                                                               
that  Representative Berkowitz's  comments  regarding the  Alaska                                                               
Conservation  Alliance are  appropriate.   He added,  however, "I                                                               
don't  think these  people  represent the  vast  majority of  the                                                               
people in the state or the  expertise that you could bring to the                                                               
issue."                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BERKOWITZ  asked   whom  Representative  Rokeberg                                                               
would  suggest  as  a representative  with  business  experience.                                                               
[Representative  Rokeberg  didn't  respond, and  Chair  Murkowski                                                               
called on other members.]                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Number 0473                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE   MEYER  offered   that  the   president  of   the                                                               
University of  Alaska would probably  designate somebody  who had                                                               
expertise  in  energy.    Furthermore,   members  of  the  Alaska                                                               
Truckers Association obviously  use a lot of fuel.   He asked why                                                               
Representative Berkowitz had  chosen to remove those  two and add                                                               
someone from the Alaska Conservation Alliance.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE BERKOWITZ answered that he  had wanted to make the                                                               
[task  force]  smaller,  and  felt   in  some  ways  those  needs                                                               
overlapped.   He  had removed  the university  because he  hadn't                                                               
heard  "an  overwhelming response  from  them,"  although he  had                                                               
hoped   the  university   might  designate   someone  from   ISER                                                               
[Institute  of Social  and Economic  Research].   Furthermore, he                                                               
had  removed the  [Alaska Truckers  Association]  because in  the                                                               
House  Community and  Regional Affairs  Standing Committee  there                                                               
was little enthusiasm  and a lot of questioning about  why it was                                                               
included.   On  reflection,  he  said, Representative  Rokeberg's                                                               
point  about  the transportation  industry  as  a whole  is  well                                                               
taken;  if Representative  Rokeberg  could come  up  with a  good                                                               
member, 13 would be a great number.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Number 0630                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  MEYER recommended  that  if  the Alaska  Truckers                                                               
Association is  removed, then  the Alaska  Conservation Alliance,                                                               
which could be controversial, should  be removed as well, leaving                                                               
an odd number [of task force members], 11.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
Number 0670                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HALCRO responded that  he believes the member from                                                               
the  Alaska  Conservation  Alliance  should  remain,  to  provide                                                               
another  viewpoint regarding  sources of  energy.   Any statewide                                                               
energy plan,  as Representative  Rokeberg had pointed  out, would                                                               
entail some kind of "green"  power.  Furthermore, there should be                                                               
a divergence of opinion  at the table.  He noted  that he was one                                                               
of the members  of the previous committee who  had questioned why                                                               
the Alaska Truckers Association was  included, and said he has no                                                               
problem with  removal of that  organization; he pointed  out that                                                               
it was  not a slight.   He suggested that other  members could be                                                               
swapped.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Number 0743                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR MURKOWSKI  noted that she  had spoken  with [Representative                                                               
Berkowitz's] staff  and had suggested  that having  fewer members                                                               
is better  than more.   She  emphasized the  weighty issue  to be                                                               
undertaken  - a  comprehensive statewide  energy plan  - with  no                                                               
money  to do  it.   She proposed  that even  though the  truckers                                                               
aren't  included, for  example, the  AFL-CIO will  represent that                                                               
interest.    She  cautioned,  however, that  any  member  may  be                                                               
expendable if another  member is proposed.  She  said she doesn't                                                               
believe it should be a straight-across exchange.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BERKOWITZ  indicated he  didn't  intend  it as  a                                                               
straight-across  exchange;  it  came about  as  people  expressed                                                               
interest.  He pointed out  that legislators have access to people                                                               
who can provide  hard data.  The Denali Commission  could also do                                                               
that.  There are plenty of ways to do research.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
Number 0887                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR MURKOWSKI referred to two  letters in packets, one from the                                                               
Alaska   Conservation  Voters   [and   the  Alaska   Conservation                                                               
Alliance] and  the other from  AkPIRG.  She  asked Representative                                                               
Berkowitz whether he had sought  out groups or had been contacted                                                               
by groups seeking to be on [the task force].                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BERKOWITZ  answered  that   the  one  group  that                                                               
contacted him  in the  last week  was the  Coal Association.   In                                                               
addition, he'd had  contact with most of  these people, including                                                               
AIDEA;  the  Denali  Commission;  the  ASTF;  ARECA;  the  Alaska                                                               
Municipal League, which  indicated that coming up  with an energy                                                               
plan for  Alaska is one of  its priorities; and Senate  and House                                                               
members.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Number 0950                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG recommended that  two members be from the                                                               
Alaska    State   Chamber    of   Commerce,    one   representing                                                               
transportation  and  the  other   representing  the  natural  gas                                                               
industry,  unless  the committee  could  come  up with  something                                                               
else.  He would delete the  Alaska Municipal League and the ASTF,                                                               
and the Denali Commission was "in his cross-hairs."                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE BERKOWITZ emphasized  that [the Denali Commission]                                                               
has part  of a plan;  he wants to  be able  to bring in  the work                                                               
they've done.  He characterized it as a rural plan.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG  interjected, saying that was  why he was                                                               
reluctant,  but that  he believes  the task  force needs  someone                                                               
from  the mining  or coal  groups involved.   He  said he  thinks                                                               
Representative Berkowitz has  done a pretty good job  in terms of                                                               
public  members, but  it  is  overweighted that  way.   He  again                                                               
stated the  desire for  people with  more technical  knowledge on                                                               
the  task force.   He  commented  that otherwise,  it looks  like                                                               
something that came out of the New Deal in 1934.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BERKOWITZ pointed  out that  the New  Deal worked                                                               
for 60 years.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
Number 1104                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
STEPHEN   CONN,  Executive   Director,  Alaska   Public  Interest                                                               
Research Group (AkPIRG), testified  via teleconference.  He noted                                                               
that  AkPIRG has  held itself  out  [for membership  on the  task                                                               
force], as it had many times  in the past when energy and utility                                                               
matters  were concerned,  to be  part  of the  discussion and  to                                                               
offer  its own  network  of  local and  national  expertise.   He                                                               
informed  the  committee  that AkPIRG  representatives  attend  a                                                               
great number of national meetings  relating to electric utilities                                                               
and other matters.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
MR. CONN  explained that in  being part of attempts  to construct                                                               
plans  geared  to  the  future,  quite  often  what  emerges  are                                                               
questions, almost checklists of areas  that need to be addressed,                                                               
so  that when  dealing  with a  discrete issue  -  whether a  gas                                                               
pipeline  or an  intertie,  for  example -  the  plan guides  the                                                               
discussion towards  consideration of issues that  otherwise might                                                               
have been  left out.   Should the  legislature go forth  with the                                                               
task force,  Mr. Conn concluded,  and should AkPIRG be  chosen to                                                               
be  included, AkPIRG  members would  be  very glad  to offer  any                                                               
resources, networks, or expertise.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Number 1233                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MEERA  KOHLER,   President  and  CEO,  Alaska   Village  Electric                                                               
Cooperative (AVEC),  testified via teleconference.   She told the                                                               
committee  she was  gratified  that  Version J  named  AVEC as  a                                                               
member of  the group.   Her initial  review of the  resolution is                                                               
that it  is much needed in  Alaska, she said, and  she is anxious                                                               
to see it come  to fruition.  Ms. Kohler noted  that she had been                                                               
concerned    about    the     preponderance    of    non-industry                                                               
representatives  on  the  task force,  but  with  the  amendments                                                               
proposed, she could see that the  ensuing balance would lead to a                                                               
hardworking and productive task force.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
MS.  KOHLER pointed  out  that ARECA  represents  not just  rural                                                               
electric  cooperatives, but  also most  of the  utilities serving                                                               
urban  Alaska.   Chugach  Electric,  ML&P [Anchorage's  Municipal                                                               
Light and Power],  Golden Valley Electric and  Homer Electric are                                                               
full members of ARECA.   Ms. Kohler said she is  sure that one of                                                               
the urban utilities would be represented on the task force.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MS. KOHLER  told the  committee that  the statewide  rural energy                                                               
plan,  currently being  worked on  by the  Denali Commission  and                                                               
AIDEA, is  something AIDEA is  spearheading; she urged  that they                                                               
be  fully  involved  in  development   of  this  statewide  plan,                                                               
"because their input is going  to be absolutely invaluable."  She                                                               
expressed support for  the resolution and concluded,  "I would be                                                               
very, very  happy to  have AVEC  participate in  this in  any way                                                               
that we  possibly can.  If  we're not actually named  to the task                                                               
force,  we  will  certainly  be  available  to  provide  whatever                                                               
expertise we can."                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Number 1344                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
SUE SCHRADER,  Conservation Advocate, Alaska  Conservation Voters                                                               
and  Alaska  Conservation  Alliance,  came  forward  to  testify,                                                               
noting  that  committee members  had  a  copy of  her  memorandum                                                               
[dated  February  26, 2001],  which  she  wouldn't repeat.    She                                                               
expressed appreciation to the committee  for hearing this, and to                                                               
Representative Berkowitz  for considering the request  to him and                                                               
his  staff  that the  Alaska  Conservation  Alliance possibly  be                                                               
included on the task force.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MS. SCHRADER pointed out that  many of her organizations' members                                                               
have participated  on other task  forces, on a variety  of issues                                                               
including mining, university lands,  and water permitting.  There                                                               
is a  lot of wisdom to  getting everything out on  the table, she                                                               
said, right  from the start.   Any of the energy  plans will have                                                               
environmental impacts, she pointed  out, adding that she believes                                                               
her organizations can bring some  resources and expertise to help                                                               
look  at those  impacts  from  the beginning,  to  help work  out                                                               
details ahead of time.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Number 1420                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  MEYER said  he supports  representation from  Ms.                                                               
Schrader's group on this [task  force], but wishes she could have                                                               
come  before the  House Community  and Regional  Affairs Standing                                                               
Committee  in  order to  have  more  discussion relating  to  the                                                               
tradeoffs.  "You should be part of this task force," he added.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR MURKOWSKI closed public testimony.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Number 1464                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  MEYER expressed  support for  the resolution  and                                                               
the concept.  He said there are  all sorts of plans and ideas; it                                                               
will be  good to have  a task force like  this to bring  them all                                                               
together with a  unified focus.  As to whether  this is the right                                                               
makeup, he added, he doesn't know.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Number 1491                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  ROKEBERG  concurred,  then   said  he'd  be  more                                                               
comfortable with  a "three-member  swap" along  the lines  he had                                                               
previously  suggested.   Representative  Rokeberg  said he  would                                                               
accede to  [Representative Berkowitz's]  wisdom about  the Denali                                                               
Commission.  He then questioned  what expertise the AFL-CIO would                                                               
provide; he noted that this relates  to an energy policy, not the                                                               
labor workforce per se.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Number 1574                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  CRAWFORD remarked  that he  supports the  idea of                                                               
having this task force, but the  debate on who has more expertise                                                               
could  be  debated  indefinitely;  he  believes  the  people  who                                                               
construct powerhouses  and wind towers, for  example, should have                                                               
a voice  at the table,  and that  member is essential.   Although                                                               
there  should  be someone  from  the  coal [industry],  how  many                                                               
members  are too  many  to wield?    He said  he'd  like to  have                                                               
somebody  from  the   AFL-CIO  to  voice  the   concerns  of  the                                                               
construction industry on  anything that gets built  that's has to                                                               
do with [Alaska's] energy policies.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
Number 1677                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  MURKOWSKI  emphasized that  this  isn't  to the  point  of                                                               
talking  about building  anything  yet.   She  surmised that  the                                                               
focus of a  comprehensive plan will be on what  options exist and                                                               
are  realistic, rather  than "getting  to the  commitment stage."                                                               
After the  task force made  a recommendation, the  legislature or                                                               
administration  would take  it  from there;  at  that point,  the                                                               
labor   organizations  would   have   to  be   involved  in   the                                                               
conversations.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR MURKOWSKI reported that in  going through her list, she had                                                               
singled  out  eight  that  she believes  to  be  imperative;  she                                                               
returned  to Representative  Meyer's comment  that the  committee                                                               
could  talk about  it all  day without  reaching consensus.   She                                                               
mentioned  the   need  to  incorporate  some   of  Representative                                                               
Rokeberg's suggestions.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
Number 1777                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  HAYES commented  that  a member  from AOGA  could                                                               
easily be a  member of the State Chamber [of  Commerce].  He said                                                               
people wear many different hats.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  ROKEBERG  asserted  that there  is  one  private-                                                               
sector person [listed in Version J].                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  HAYES said,  "I think  you can  get to  where you                                                               
want to go with what you have here."                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Number 1815                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BERKOWITZ responded  that he  would imagine  that                                                               
whatever  task force  is  put forward  would  have an  incredible                                                               
outreach, which he believes is essential.  He stated:                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
     I think  it's very clear:   there needs to be  a lot of                                                                    
     deliberations  with  various  aspects of  the  business                                                                    
     community involved,  and [there  needs] to  be outreach                                                                    
     to  academia,  to  power-generation  facilities.    ...                                                                    
     There's no way we could put  everyone on here.  We know                                                                    
     how hard  it is  to do  things with  40 people  [in the                                                                    
     House].  To  cover the expertise in minute  detail on a                                                                    
     task force would require at least that many folks. ...                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     I would encourage  the task force, to the  extent I can                                                                    
     do it from here, to reach out  as far and as wide as it                                                                    
     can, because  that's going to  yield the  best product.                                                                    
      [Maybe] they can have a subcommittee.  I'm not going                                                                      
     to tell them how to do their job.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Number 1881                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  ROKEBERG  referred  to  page  1,  subsection  (3)                                                               
[Version  J,  lines  15-16,  which   read:    "(3)  to  recommend                                                               
financing  options,   including  federal,  state,   or  municipal                                                               
grants, bonds,  or other  means"].  He  suggested that  the whole                                                               
private sector - banks - had been skipped.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE BERKOWITZ said that is the "other means."                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  ROKEBERG referred  to  page 1,  line [10],  which                                                               
read in part:   "the roles of the federal,  state, municipal, and                                                               
tribal  governments".   He said  the governor  had adopted  "that                                                               
stance" and  asked whether [the  statutes] have language  to that                                                               
effect.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE BERKOWITZ said the  federal government has adopted                                                               
it, but he doesn't know whether it is in the state statutes.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  ROKEBERG suggested  there may  be another  way to                                                               
"finesse that somewhere along the line."                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Number 1959                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG  made a motion  to adopt an  amendment to                                                               
remove the  [Alaska] Municipal League  member on page 2,  line 8;                                                               
and  to remove  the  Alaska Science  and Technology  [Foundation]                                                               
member on  page 2, line 13.   In their place,  the [Alaska] State                                                               
Chamber [of Commerce]  would appoint two members  chosen from the                                                               
following  three industries:    transportation,  natural gas,  or                                                               
coal mining.   [This was later amended and  split into Amendments                                                               
1 and  2.]   Representative Rokeberg  explained that  it broadens                                                               
the representation without broadening the membership.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
Number 2064                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  CRAWFORD  referred to  [page  2]  line 12,  which                                                               
listed  "one  member   appointed  by  the  Alaska   Oil  and  Gas                                                               
Association".    He  asked  whether  natural  gas  isn't  already                                                               
covered.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
Number 2095                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HALCRO asked:  Why  not specify that there will be                                                               
one  member  appointed by  the  Alaska  Miners Association?    He                                                               
pointed out  that some members  of that association might  not be                                                               
members of the [Alaska State] Chamber [of Commerce].                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Number 2110                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE MEYER suggested  that if Representative Rokeberg's                                                               
intent is  to have two  members from the private  sector, perhaps                                                               
it could just  say that the [Alaska] State  Chamber [of Commerce]                                                               
is to appoint two members  from the private sector; that wouldn't                                                               
narrow it so much.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Number 2161                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BERKOWITZ  said  he  thinks  it  is  particularly                                                               
important   to   [include]   someone  who   is   concerned   with                                                               
transportation.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  ROKEBERG  suggested   perhaps  the  Alaska  State                                                               
Chamber of Commerce  member could be used  for the transportation                                                               
member, and  then there could  be someone from the  Alaska Miners                                                               
Association.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BERKOWITZ  proposed  that along  with  having  an                                                               
Alaska  State  Chamber  of  Commerce  member  with  expertise  in                                                               
transportation,  someone  from   the  RDC  [Resource  Development                                                               
Council]  could  call  on  somebody from  the  coal  or  [mining]                                                               
industry, for example.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG concurred.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
Number 2199                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR   MURKOWSKI  asked   Representative  Berkowitz   about  the                                                               
deletion of the Alaska Municipal League and ASTF members.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE   BERKOWITZ   expressed    confidence   that   the                                                               
assistance  of the  Alaska  Municipal League  or  the ASTF  could                                                               
always be  obtained, if needed.   "This  is a good  public policy                                                               
step," he added.  "They're going to want to be there."                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
Number 2232                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ROKEBERG split his  amendment into two amendments.                                                               
Conceptual  Amendment 1,  on  [page 2]  line  8, subsection  (3),                                                               
would replace the [Alaska] Municipal  League member with a member                                                               
from the transportation industry  appointed by the [Alaska] State                                                               
Chamber  [of  Commerce].   Conceptual  Amendment  2 would  delete                                                               
[page 2] lines 13-14 ["(7)  one member appointed by the executive                                                               
director  of the  Alaska  Science  and Technology  Foundation;"].                                                               
That  member would  be replaced  by a  member [appointed  by] the                                                               
RDC.                                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Number 2328                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR MURKOWSKI asked  whether there was any  objection to either                                                               
amendment.    [No  objection was  stated;  therefore,  Conceptual                                                               
Amendments 1 and 2 were treated as adopted.]                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR MURKOWSKI  mentioned the member  appointed by  the AFL-CIO.                                                               
She  asked  Representative  Berkowitz  whether  he  feels  it  is                                                               
necessary to have a labor representative at this point.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE   BERKOWITZ  replied   that  when   talking  about                                                               
planning, he  believes it is  important "to have people  who know                                                               
how  to do,"  such  as people  who  have picked  up  a shovel  or                                                               
wielded a  hammer.  Engineers  are great  for a design,  he said,                                                               
but  someone  has to  put  it  together; practical  expertise  is                                                               
significant.   A  good plan  is shaped  by the  limitations of  a                                                               
workforce regarding what is feasible.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR MURKOWSKI  said she doesn't  know that she agrees,  but she                                                               
doesn't have anybody whom she wants to put in there.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
Number 2413                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  MURKOWSKI referred  to the  termination date.   She  asked                                                               
whether the  committee really  anticipates that  full appointment                                                               
of the  membership could take until  June 15.  In  that case, she                                                               
suggested,  the task  force may  not get  much done.   She  asked                                                               
whether there is some "magic" in that.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE BERKOWITZ said no.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR MURKOWSKI proposed, then,  that work begin immediately upon                                                               
appointment of the full membership.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BERKOWITZ replied  that if  someone drags  his or                                                               
her heels,  however, there could  be a problem [without  the June                                                               
15 date].                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
Number 2448                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  HAYES asked  why there  is a  House member  and a                                                               
Senate member,  and how important  it is  [to the sponsor].   The                                                               
privatization  [commission], he  noted,  didn't  go much  further                                                               
than filing a report.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BERKOWITZ  replied  that [the  inclusion  of  the                                                               
House and Senate members] is out of necessity.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
TAPE 01-27, SIDE B                                                                                                              
Number 2471                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
[The remainder  of Representative Berkowitz's reply  is inaudible                                                               
because of a temporary problem with tape speed.]                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  HALCRO  moved  to  report CSHCR  1  [version  22-                                                               
LS0307\J,  Cramer,  2/27/01] as  amended  out  of committee  with                                                               
individual  recommendations and  the attached  zero fiscal  note.                                                               
There  being no  objection, CSHCR  1(L&C)  was moved  out of  the                                                               
House Labor and Commerce Standing Committee.                                                                                    

Document Name Date/Time Subjects