Legislature(1993 - 1994)

03/01/1993 05:00 PM O&G

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
              HOUSE SPECIAL COMMITTEE ON OIL & GAS                             
                          March 1, 1993                                        
                            5:00 p.m.                                          
  MEMBERS PRESENT                                                              
  Representative Joe Green, Chairman                                           
  Representative Pete Kott, Vice Chairman                                      
  Representative Harley Olberg                                                 
  Representative Gary Davis                                                    
  Representative Jerry Sanders                                                 
  Representative Joe Sitton                                                    
  MEMBERS ABSENT                                                               
  Representative Jerry Mackie                                                  
  COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                           
  Presentation by Alaska Clean Seas                                            
  WITNESS REGISTER                                                             
  Norman Ingram, General Manager                                               
  Alaska Clean Seas                                                            
  12350 Industry Way, Suite 202                                                
  Anchorage, Alaska  99516                                                     
  POSITION STATEMENT: Provided background on Alaska Clean Seas                 
  Dennis D. Rome, Commander                                                    
  United States Coast Guard                                                    
  Marine Safety Office                                                         
  2760 Sherwood Lane, Suite 2A                                                 
  Juneau, Alaska  99801                                                        
  POSITION STATEMENT: Gave the Coast Guard's perspective on                    
  ACTION NARRATIVE                                                             
  Tape 93-07, Side A                                                           
  Number 000                                                                   
  CHAIRMAN JOE GREEN called the meeting to order at 5:05 p.m.,                 
  members present were Representatives Green, Olberg, Davis,                   
  Sanders, and Sitton.  He introduced Norman Ingram from                       
  Alaska Clean Seas to give a presentation on a proposal                       
  showing the potential for correcting major oil spills on                     
  Number 030                                                                   
  passed around a brief background summary of ACS and directed                 
  committee members to Page 3.  He stated ACS was a non-profit                 
  oil spill response cooperative formed in 1979 as an                          
  equipment only co-op, which was reorganized in 1990, with an                 
  expanded mandate to cover response and include the onshore                   
  areas on the North Slope in addition to the Beaufort Sea,                    
  which was the original area.  The ACS currently have 10                      
  member companies.  Three companies have dropped out in the                   
  past year:  Marathon, Shell, and AMOCO (who no longer have                   
  any activities on the North Slope), he added.                                
  MR. INGRAM pointed out that on the North Slope no matter how                 
  small the operation, the individual operator had equipment                   
  and resources available to address any problem that might                    
  happen, and they have the ability to call on ACS.  He                        
  directed members to Page 6 of the handout which showed the                   
  hands-on personnel available on any particular day was 230                   
  people on-site at all times, with a supplemental from the                    
  North Slope available within 24 hours.  He stated the                        
  Auxiliary Contract Response Team had been tested on an                       
  unannounced basis one year ago, and there were 756 people                    
  on-scene when the drill was closed after approximately 9.5                   
  MR. INGRAM stated the next four pages of the handout were a                  
  detailed inventory of the equipment, including the                           
  traditional items:  Boom, boat, skimmers, etc., along with                   
  some of the items that were not as obvious, such as wildlife                 
  rehabilitation equipment and, most importantly,                              
  telecommunications equipment.  He stated ACS currently had                   
  an inventory which had a replacement cost in excess of $2                    
  million and telecommunications was a tremendous asset.  He                   
  stated ACS worked with the state of Alaska and the Division                  
  of Telecommunications in establishing compatibility.                         
  MR. INGRAM further stated the summary level of equipment in                  
  total on the Slope included about 360,000 feet of boom, 84                   
  vessels, and about 200 skimmers.  The Beaufort Sea was an                    
  extremely shallow sea and so the biggest challenge they had                  
  was having vessels that could operate in that shallow water,                 
  he added.                                                                    
  Number 163                                                                   
  CHAIRMAN GREEN asked if it was fair to say that equipment                    
  could be moved from the North Slope to Prince William Sound,                 
  or vice versa, within a 24 hour period.                                      
  Number 165                                                                   
  MR. INGRAM replied in the affirmative.  He stated many of                    
  the member companies were common with many of the people who                 
  might have a problem in Prince William Sound.  He advised                    
  that ACS had participated in 10 actual events in 1992, seven                 
  of which were off the North Slope, in assisting and                          
  sometimes just consulting.  One was as far away as Africa                    
  where there was a major tanker incident in which the Coast                   
  Guard Strike Team called on input from ACS, where in-situ                    
  burning was being considered.  He stated ACS had a fairly                    
  active training program and have provided 17,500 man hours                   
  of training in the past year, which was the equivalent of                    
  providing about 430 people with a full week of training.                     
  MR. INGRAM continued to say that the final element goes back                 
  to the ability to utilize resource equipment to the                          
  assistance of others.  He said, "The issue of liability and,                 
  to a certain extent, compensation, are very critical issues                  
  and we have determined for a non-member company we are not                   
  in a position to carry out the types of financial legal                      
  checks in the midst of an emergency, as to whether or not we                 
  could work with such a group.  Therefore, we have determined                 
  that we would only be able to respond to a non-member                        
  company upon request by, or under contract with, either the                  
  state of Alaska or the federal government."                                  
  MR. INGRAM stated they had presented a contract to the state                 
  of Alaska in August, 1992, and have been working intensively                 
  with the state, to try to put that contract in place before                  
  an emergency happened rather than wishing they had after the                 
  fact.  On the Federal side, ACS anticipated having the                       
  contract in place by this coming summer (1993), through the                  
  U.S. Coast Guard, he said, and noted ACS was working closely                 
  with other groups, both the Cook Inlet Group in Alaska and                   
  some of the co-ops on the west coast.                                        
  Number 240                                                                   
  MR. INGRAM said, "Part of this has been cleared by the fact                  
  that the federal government either has become, or is                         
  literally, within the next week or so, about to become a                     
  member of the CISPRI Organization in Cook Inlet."  This is                   
  with respect to the Defense Fuel Supply Service, which                       
  brings fuel up and down Cook Inlet in fairly large                           
  quantities for Ft. Richardson and Elmendorf Air Force Base.                  
  The ACS needs a response contractor, and have approached                     
  CISPRI and worked out indemnification language that both                     
  sides can live with, he added.                                               
  Number 267                                                                   
  CHAIRMAN GREEN asked who became the incident commander in                    
  the case of a major spill.                                                   
  Number 271                                                                   
  MR. INGRAM replied that ACS' view in all cases was that they                 
  were part of the unified command team.  He said, "We have                    
  federal, state, and local communities and the responsible                    
  party working together as a team.  If we were called in                      
  either by the state or federal government, under contract                    
  with them, we would be a part of their team, which I would                   
  like to think would be working cooperatively with the                        
  responsible party.  If one of their member companies were                    
  involved, we would be coming in as part of their team, but                   
  in any case we would be seeking to work as one team."                        
  Number 287                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE GARY DAVIS asked how they would handle                        
  materials such as absorbent rags, boom, and whatever bulk                    
  oil might be picked up from the spill.                                       
  Number 292                                                                   
  MR. INGRAM said the North Slope area provided the ability to                 
  recycle any oil which was picked up and reuse the oil and                    
  have it go to market.  He added that in terms of material,                   
  there were a couple of possibilities.  One was incineration,                 
  or if it was material that was not contaminated and could be                 
  cleaned up then it could go to the landfill.  If it                          
  contained hazardous waste it would have to go outside the                    
  state (to a Class I disposal site).                                          
  Number 308                                                                   
  MR. INGRAM stated ACS was the only cooperative in North                      
  America with a research and development program, and focused                 
  attention on those things which were unique to the Arctic                    
  and sub-Arctic.  One of those things was in-situ burning.                    
  He said, "As the name implies, if you have a spill you burn                  
  the oil in place, particularly if it is on the water prior                   
  to it spreading too far.  You may have to contain it with                    
  special fire resistant boom to keep the thickness necessary                  
  (to ignite a burn).  There are some restrictions on this,                    
  the biggest one is time.  You have a very limited window of                  
  time when you can burn the oil.  Oil will naturally try to                   
  thin out and you must have a minimum thickness."                             
  MR. INGRAM continued, "The chemical dispersants which are                    
  out there have not proven themselves to be particularly                      
  effective in cold water situations."  He disclosed in 1992,                  
  ACS made an attempt to carry out a much needed, lengthy                      
  offshore burn test in the Beaufort Sea that got wide support                 
  both from the local communities, government agencies and                     
  environmental advocacy groups.  One agency which did not get                 
  into step was the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).  As                 
  a result of this, the permits which were necessary to carry                  
  out the task had  not been granted.                                          
  MR. INGRAM added that in the aftermath of this                               
  disappointment, ACS have pursued this option and in doing                    
  so, reached some agreement with their Russian counterpart,                   
  the Marine Pollution Control and Salvage Administration, who                 
  proposed working with ACS in a burn test which would                         
  replicate the plan for the Beaufort Sea, but in Eastern                      
  Russian waters.  "Recognizing a lot of hurdles obviously, we                 
  were nevertheless pleased and honored to have this request                   
  from the Coast Guard to assist them," he said.  He then                      
  passed out the ACS summary plan.                                             
  MR. INGRAM stated this plan would release approximately                      
  1,000 barrels over a five hour period at a rate of about 200                 
  barrels per hour.  The release would be made in a controlled                 
  fashion.  There would be scientific measurements taken prior                 
  to the ignition of the crude.  Crude oil has emissions that                  
  come off naturally, and it is important to compare those                     
  with the smoke after a burn takes place.  During this time                   
  the release vessel, and the containment boom, would be                       
  moving through the oil at approximately half a knot and                      
  there would be a full backup system in place.                                
  MR. INGRAM directed committee members to Page 17 of his                      
  handout and stated there was a representation of how the                     
  flotilla might look with the release vessel and backup                       
  equipment.  He stated this test would involve the University                 
  of Alaska, specialized equipment from the University of                      
  Washington, which was the same team who did the monitoring                   
  for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration                      
  (NOAA), in the aftermath of the Kuwait oil fires, teams from                 
  the NOAA HAZ-MAT (hazardous material) Team and from the                      
  National Institute of Standard Testing.  He said, "The                       
  Russians have proposed a location about as far away as you                   
  can get, 60 miles east of Vladivostok, and about 15 miles                    
  Number 448                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE DAVIS asked about the reason for the site                     
  Number 449                                                                   
  MR. INGRAM felt the site was convenient.  He noted the                       
  Vladivostok area had a huge marine base.                                     
  Number 453                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE JOE SITTON asked if the Japanese had                          
  expressed any interest.                                                      
  MR. INGRAM said the Japanese have had some casual interest,                  
  but ACS had not pursued them too hard.  He advised that                      
  quite a bit of the equipment, especially the specialized                     
  equipment, came from the North Slope and would be used over                  
  there.  The U.S. Coast Guard identified a 378 foot-cutter                    
  from Honolulu, which would be assigned to the project and                    
  would be the command and control vessel.  This test was                      
  proposed for late July, 1993.  Funding was a significant                     
  challenge and ACS has been asked by the Coast Guard to                       
  manage and carry out the details of the test, he disclosed.                  
  MR. INGRAM approximated the total cost of the test,                          
  including the research and development components and the                    
  ultimate reporting to be $3 million, and proposed that                       
  funding for this be supported equally on a partnership basis                 
  between the U.S. Federal Government, the State of Alaska,                    
  and industry.  He stated the State of Alaska, certainly more                 
  than any other state in the United States, had more                          
  application here because of the remote nature of Alaska.                     
  Number 487                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE JERRY SANDERS asked if a test this far south                  
  would have results pertinent to what would happen on the                     
  North Slope.                                                                 
  Number 490                                                                   
  MR. INGRAM understood the sea conditions and temperature                     
  were pretty similar and the issue of temperature was one of                  
  the least important factors.  In-situ burnings have been                     
  carried out at -40 degrees on the North Slope, he pointed                    
  out, so temperature was not a factor as long as an initial                   
  heat source could be generated for ignition.  It was                         
  preferable not to have ice simply because it would be an                     
  inconvenience since transition would occur approximately                     
  three miles during the four to five hour period and having                   
  to navigate around or through ice would detract from the                     
  ability to maximize the scientific gain.  He disclosed the                   
  Russians had been given a list of the criteria that the ACS                  
  was trying to achieve.                                                       
  Number 508                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE SANDERS did not understand how the test could                 
  be effective because the ice was an inconvenience.  If there                 
  was a real oil spill, there would be a whole lot of                          
  inconvenience, he declared.                                                  
  Number 510                                                                   
  MR. INGRAM clarified it was an inconvenience in terms of                     
  carrying out the test and trying to gain scientific                          
  knowledge from it.  In fact, he added, ice was a challenge                   
  no matter when you worked with it, however, it did have one                  
  considerable advantage in that it holds the oil.  He advised                 
  that experiments in Canada had shown you could get away                      
  without using containment boom in ice because the oil would                  
  be held by the ice.  It was a legitimate question that                       
  needed to be tried and tested, he said, and added "Some of                   
  this we have done, and some work we are doing with the                       
  Norwegians will do this as well."                                            
  Number 528                                                                   
  CHAIRMAN GREEN added the majority of offshore drilling in                    
  Alaska had been done during solid ice coverage, because the                  
  regulatory agencies concurred with Mr. Ingram's statements                   
  Number 533                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE SITTON stated there was a time line on the                    
  funding question and wondered if Mr. Ingram had any sense of                 
  the legislators' leadership about their commitment to the                    
  state's thirty-three percent.                                                
  Number 536                                                                   
  MR. INGRAM said the reaction from the administration and, in                 
  general, from the legislature, and certainly from the Senate                 
  Oil and Gas Committee meeting the previous week, had been                    
  very favorable.  He stated that many people were aware and                   
  very supportive of the test from the work done in 1992 in                    
  the Beaufort Sea.  Funds have been specifically targeted                     
  from the restitution fund of the Exxon Valdez.  In their                     
  request for support they targeted this on both the state and                 
  federal side, he added, and in the overall funding, the                      
  federal funding, in essence, was in place for their share                    
  and the industry's was also substantially in place.                          
  Number 552                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE SITTON asked if they wanted to get started                    
  and just hope we catch up.                                                   
  Number 553                                                                   
  MR. INGRAM said, "It may be that way regarding the                           
  expenditure side, but if the full funding is not in place by                 
  the go-no-go date, at the end of March, then the project                     
  will be cancelled, as the one in 1992 with the EPA."                         
  Number 558                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE SITTON asked Chairman Green what kind of                      
  latitude the Governor's office had on this kind of                           
  expenditure, since the legislature could not act this                        
  Number 560                                                                   
  CHAIRMAN GREEN said, "It would be faster to have the                         
  Governor act, however, $1 million would be tough."  He hoped                 
  to get a recommendation from the committee to add $1 million                 
  to the $35 million Exxon fund in time to meet this                           
  commitment.  "This does not mean the spill drill would be                    
  done the end of March, just the commitment of funds, and the                 
  spill drill would be done in the summer," he clarified.                      
  Number 576                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE SITTON asked how the Senate Oil and Gas                       
  Committee felt about that.                                                   
  Number 577                                                                   
  CHAIRMAN GREEN said he did not witness that meeting, but it                  
  was his understanding the Senate Oil and Gas Committee was                   
  in agreement.                                                                
  MR. INGRAM stated the Senate Oil & Gas Committee was very                    
  supportive and had indicated they would also move forward                    
  with support for the test.  He advised of his meeting with                   
  the administration and felt members of the administration                    
  were supportive.  He said, "The bottom line is there is an                   
  opportunity here, as there was last year."  He found it                      
  commendable that the Coast Guard continued to push this for                  
  the range of reasons that the Russians were interested in                    
  doing this, and thought it should be obvious that one of the                 
  things they were not putting into this was any funding; but                  
  it was recognized they were fairly strapped in that regard.                  
  MR. INGRAM said, "They are taking the risk, they are                         
  providing the ballpark.  This is not a technology that they                  
  have looked to in the past, they see a lot of potential for                  
  it.  They are quite well equipped in some other regards in                   
  terms of oil spill equipment.  Some of the big units in                      
  Prince William Sound were in Vladivostok before they were in                 
  the United States.  This is an opportunity they presented to                 
  us and we are giving it full thrust at the moment and we                     
  hope it comes out favorably."                                                
  Number 605                                                                   
  CHAIRMAN GREEN understood the information to be gained from                  
  this would be a matter of public record, and would be                        
  available to the Russians, the state, industry, and ACS.  He                 
  asked if there was any chance, barring a catastrophe, that                   
  if the state went along with this and committed $1 million,                  
  it might end up costing $5-7 million more.                                   
  Number 614                                                                   
  MR. INGRAM stated liability was a real issue.  He said, "The                 
  liability resides with the co-sponsors, which is the U.S.                    
  Coast Guard and the Russian Marine Pollution Control and                     
  Salvage Administration.  The request is up to a maximum of                   
  $1 million from the State of Alaska."                                        
  Number 625                                                                   
  CHAIRMAN GREEN asked where they planned to get the oil that                  
  would be used.                                                               
  Number 629                                                                   
  MR. INGRAM hoped to use North Slope crude.  "However,                        
  Vladivostok is a very long way away and we need to look at                   
  the benefits of using North Slope crude versus a Russian                     
  crude we could get with somewhat the same characteristics,"                  
  he said.                                                                     
  Number 639                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE SITTON asked if the EPA had objected in 1992,                 
  or if they dragged their feet.                                               
  Number 641                                                                   
  MR. INGRAM felt the EPA was extremely supportive at the                      
  local level in Alaska, but the problem seemed to happen in                   
  Washington D.C. where it got bogged down.  His sense was if                  
  they had to do it over, they would have handled it very                      
  differently.  In essence what happened was that the clock                    
  expired, he believed.                                                        
  REPRESENTATIVE SITTON stated that perhaps Alaska would have                  
  its own EPA region before long and could then get better                     
  Number 654                                                                   
  MR. INGRAM stated they have formally requested the support                   
  of a wide range of groups, including the North Slope                         
  Borough.  One very important group that has been asked for                   
  support was the Alaska Regional Response Team, co-chaired by                 
  the EPA and the Coast Guard.  He understood this support was                 
  Number 662                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE SANDERS found it hard to believe that crude                   
  behaved the same way in an arctic environment as it would                    
  behave down there.                                                           
  Number 668                                                                   
  MR. INGRAM stated no two spills were identical, but one                      
  could look at the characteristics.  He said, "Sea                            
  temperature does not vary that much, really you are looking                  
  at measurable and controllable changes.  One of the issues                   
  we will look at is water column sampling, and that is part                   
  of the reason for moving through the water.  Very little oil                 
  sinks and the residue from previous testing is very much a                   
  'taffy-like' material.  Oil shrinks in the same way plastic                  
  shrinks, so you have a black plastic like material that you                  
  can lift with your hands and pull apart."                                    
  Number 696                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE SANDERS asked if there would be more                          
  viscosity if it was colder, so if it worked here it would                    
  work better in the north.                                                    
  Number 697                                                                   
  MR. INGRAM stated one of the benefits of the cold                            
  environment was that it inhibited the extent to which                        
  evaporation took place.  He said, "In extremely cold                         
  climates you tend to get a seal formed over the top layer of                 
  oil.  The area north of the Brooks Range is the only area in                 
  the United States that has conditional pre-approval in-situ                  
  TAPE 93-07, SIDE B                                                           
  Number 000                                                                   
  MR. INGRAM stated in a newsletter there was a story about a                  
  road tanker spill in the Brooks Range, which was a fuel                      
  hauler, the tanker flipped over, spilled 8,000 gallons of                    
  arctic grade diesel and the solution that was used to                        
  address this response in a very remote, steep terrain area,                  
  was to burn it.  The burn took place about 20 hours after                    
  the spill and was very effective.                                            
  Number 034                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE SITTON stated that there was a lot said                       
  during the Valdez Spill about the cold water effects on the                  
  Number 039                                                                   
  MR. INGRAM stated there was a short burn test carried out in                 
  the aftermath of the Exxon Valdez about 40 hours after the                   
  spill.  There were about 30,000 gallons that were burned off                 
  in about an hour.                                                            
  Number 049                                                                   
  40 hours after the Exxon Valdez oil spill a fire started                     
  that burned 15,000 to 30,000 gallons in a period of 55                       
  minutes.  The down side of that was no attention was being                   
  paid to the wind, which drove some of the debris into the                    
  village of Tatitlek.  The two factors that would affect a                    
  burn were the temperature, and the physical sea conditions,                  
  he added.                                                                    
  Number 121                                                                   
  CHAIRMAN GREEN asked if the Coast Guard cutter would be the                  
  command vessel.                                                              
  Number 131                                                                   
  COMMANDER ROME replied in the affirmative.  He said this                     
  offered a variety of things, like showing the flags in                       
  Russian water, which had a positive benefit for the Coast                    
  Guard.  He stated the Coast Guard planned to get                             
  interpreters and as much of the Russian delegation on board                  
  the vessel as possible and show them the technology.                         
  Number 142                                                                   
  CHAIRMAN GREEN asked if the Coast Guard would be the                         
  incident command or ACS would actually carry out the                         
  operation and backup operation.                                              
  Number 151                                                                   
  MR. INGRAM stated the project manager almost certainly would                 
  come through ACS, but would take program direction from the                  
  joint U.S. sponsor team, which meant they would ultimately                   
  be taking direction from the U.S. Coast Guard.                               
  COMMANDER ROME added the basis for this was a signed                         
  agreement between the U.S. and the USSR which allowed a                      
  mechanism for each party to assume responsibility for paying                 
  their bills.  He said, "If we spill oil in Russian waters                    
  then technically it is our responsibility that it gets                       
  cleaned up."                                                                 
  Number 177                                                                   
  CHAIRMAN GREEN asked if this test would be done during the                   
  day and video taped for review.                                              
  COMMANDER ROME replied in the affirmative.                                   
  Number 188                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE SITTON felt all the questions about who was                   
  in charge were very important because during the Valdez Oil                  
  Spill the President of the United States had to step in and                  
  say that the Coast Guard was in charge.                                      
  Number 196                                                                   
  MR. INGRAM stated a program like this had a very significant                 
  safety element.  He said, "The folks from their organization                 
  who will be over there are a very well drilled, trained,                     
  confident group and they will be in charge of when we burn -                 
  when we do not burn."                                                        
  Number 206                                                                   
  COMMANDER ROME stated the Coast Guard came out with a                        
  statement that they would be participating in a unified                      
  command structure with the state agency.  He said, "There                    
  are no time lines for decisions, but if you cannot reach a                   
  consensus then it is a responsibility of the Coast Guard to                  
  direct what is going to go on."                                              
  Number 227                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE SITTON stated there were a couple of suitable                 
  Universities and Canadians.                                                  
  Number 229                                                                   
  MR. INGRAM stated there were excellent folks, particularly                   
  the folks at the University of Alaska.                                       
  Number 238                                                                   
  CHAIRMAN GREEN stated the $3 million commitment to the                       
  project would be needed prior to the end of March, but if it                 
  was a no-go situation, the state would not lose any money.                   
  Number 251                                                                   
  MR. INGRAM stated the U.S. Coast Guard and the Alaska Clean                  
  Seas have agreed to carry the burden of this into April,                     
  1993, in case they get into a situation like the one in                      
  1992, and if this project does not go ahead then no one else                 
  would contribute.  The issue of the go-no-go time frame was                  
  quite critical.  The time frame at the end of March happened                 
  to be convenient in the sense the big oil spill conference                   
  held every two years was held in Tampa at the end of March.                  
  The Russian delegation will be over for that and plans were                  
  already in place for some sort of an agreement ceremony on                   
  April 2, then, interestingly enough, the Russian group was                   
  coming to Alaska and would participate in the Valdez                         
  exercise the first week in April, he noted.                                  
  Number 277                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE SITTON asked if the Governor could spend                      
  $838,000 promoting the development of the Arctic National                    
  Wildlife Refuge without legislative approval, how come one                   
  million dollars could not be given to ACS to let them have                   
  the go ahead.  He said, "Obviously he has discretionary                      
  latitude in that range of figures."                                          
  CHAIRMAN GREEN was not sure, but thought so.                                 
  Number 291                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE SITTON stated that was $838,000 which the                     
  Governor just wrote a check for.                                             
  Number 298                                                                   
  CHAIRMAN GREEN stated that was a good point and asked if it                  
  was the consensus of the committee to get a letter to that                   
  effect to the Governor; that the committee had reviewed this                 
  process, supported it and certainly felt funding should come                 
  from the Exxon settlement so it would not cost the people of                 
  the state anything.                                                          
  Number 304                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE SITTON MOVED to send a letter to the Governor                 
  as suggested by the Chair.                                                   
  Number 307                                                                   
  CHAIRMAN GREEN asked if there were any objections.  Hearing                  
  none he promised to draft a letter to the Governor.  He                      
  stated the main concern he had was to the benefit of the                     
  people in the state.                                                         
  Number 312                                                                   
  REPRESENTATIVE SITTON endorsed the Chair's comment, and                      
  voiced his concern about the time line.                                      
  Number 314                                                                   
  CHAIRMAN GREEN stated this was very critical.  He asked for                  
  any other questions.                                                         
  Number 319                                                                   
  MR. INGRAM stated it was his intent to show a five minute                    
  video of in-situ burning, but could not get a hold of a VCR.                 
  Number 338                                                                   
  CHAIRMAN GREEN announced there would be a joint oil and gas                  
  committee meeting in the Butrovich Room with Julian Darley,                  
  President of BP.                                                             
  The meeting was adjourned at 6:10 p.m.                                       

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