Legislature(2001 - 2002)
04/10/2001 05:30 PM O&G
* first hearing in first committee of referral
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
SB 164 - NO GAS PIPELINE OVER BEAUFORT SEA [Contains discussion relating to HB 83] Number 0100 VICE CHAIR FATE announced the first order of business, SENATE BILL NO. 164, "An Act prohibiting leases under the Right-of-Way Leasing Act on state land in or adjacent to the Beaufort Sea; and providing for an effective date." Number 0120 VICE CHAIR FATE requested a motion to adopt the proposed committee substitute (CS), Version J [22-LS0809\J, Chenoweth, 4/5/01], as a work draft. [Representative Chenault subsequently said "yes," which was taken as a motion; no objection was stated, and Version J was treated as adopted.] VICE CHAIR FATE explained that on page 2 of Version J, language was added on lines 17-25. However, an amendment was needed on page 3, lines 7-11, subparagraph (B), to remove language regarding capacity that doesn't fit in the bill in this particular area. [Adopted as a work draft at the 4/2/01 hearing on HB 83 was a proposed CS, Version L; the original HB 83 had been gutted and had language from SB 164 put into it, and Version L retained the employment language and language dealing with pipeline capacity. Senator Torgerson, sponsor of SB 164, had testified at the 4/2/01 hearing on HB 83, indicating he had no problem with the employment wording, but felt the pipeline capacity language did not fit in the bill. Therefore, when SB 164 was to be heard by the House Special Committee on Oil and Gas, a new proposed CS ordered by the committee was to include the employment language from Version L of HB 83, but not the capacity language; however, the resulting proposed CS for SB 164, Version J, mistakenly included the capacity language.] Number 0400 SENATOR JOHN TORGERSON, Alaska State Legislature, came forward to testify as sponsor of SB 164. He explained that the thrust of SB 164 is to eliminate the "over-the-top" [gas pipeline] route, rather than to talk about [pipeline] capacities. The bill talks about eliminating a choice by making the legislative finding that [the "over-the-top" route] isn't in the best interests of the state because it wouldn't include value-added uses, for example. Referring members to subparagraph (A) [page 3], Senator Torgerson emphasized that the capacity question just doesn't fit within the context of the bill. Number 0545 REPRESENTATIVE DYSON moved to adopt a conceptual amendment to Version J, page 3, "taking out (A) on line 4, and ... everything from line 7 through line 12." There being no objection, conceptual Amendment 1 was adopted. [A motion to move the bill from committee was made, but was withdrawn in order to hear testimony.] Number 0709 MICHAEL J. HURLEY, Government Relations, North American Natural Gas Pipeline Group, came forward to testify, noting that committee members had his written testimony. He emphasized the group's opposition to the bill, saying it is inappropriate at this point to be taking options off the table. Number 0796 REPRESENTATIVE CHENAULT asked whether looking at alternative routes is a requirement of the FERC [Federal Energy Regulatory Commission] or something that the group has decided to do on its own. MR. HURLEY specified that a section in the U.S. regulations, 18 C.F.R. 380.12, sets out the requirements for an application to the FERC. Section 12 of 18 C.F.R 380 outlines one of the appendices required for a filing, which includes an alternative analysis and specifies that it must look at alternative costs, environmental impacts, and so forth. Number 0934 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN said right now there is no pipeline; therefore, [the legislature] is choosing a preferred route. He added that Congress already has chosen a route. He suggested that the policy call is similar to whether the State of Alaska wants to invest in "fast ferries" or a road out of Juneau. It isn't prohibiting something that already exists, he said, but is making a policy call regarding the route. MR. HURLEY restated his belief that it is premature for anyone to make those kinds of determinations before having the information. VICE CHAIR FATE asked whether there were questions of William Britt, Jr., Pipeline Coordinator, Department of Natural Resources, who was on teleconference; none were offered. Number 1168 REPRESENTATIVE DYSON made a motion to move HCS for SB 164, version 22-LS0809\J, Chenoweth, 4/5/01, as amended, out of committee with individual recommendations and the zero fiscal note. There being no objection, HCS SB 164(O&G) was moved out of the House Special Committee on Oil and Gas.