Legislature(2017 - 2018)SENATE FINANCE 532

04/11/2018 09:00 AM FINANCE

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* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
-- Meeting Postponed to 9:30 a.m. --
<Bill Hearing Canceled>
<Bill Hearing Canceled>
+ Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled: TELECONFERENCED
Heard & Held
<Bill Hearing Rescheduled from 4/12/18 at 9 a.m.>
Moved HB 128 Out of Committee
HOUSE BILL NO. 128                                                                                                            
     "An Act  relating to management  of enhanced  stocks of                                                                    
     shellfish; authorizing  certain nonprofit organizations                                                                    
     to engage  in shellfish enhancement  projects; relating                                                                    
     to application  fees for  salmon hatchery  permits; and                                                                    
     providing for an effective date."                                                                                          
9:45:58 AM                                                                                                                    
Co-Chair MacKinnon  highlighted the  history of the  bill in                                                                    
9:46:40 AM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE DAN ORTIZ, SPONSOR, introduced himself.                                                                          
9:46:51 AM                                                                                                                    
MARY  HAKALA, STAFF,  REPRESENTATIVE  DAN ORTIZ,  introduced                                                                    
Representative  Ortiz  stated  that   the  bill  dealt  with                                                                    
shellfish enhancement  projects, and  set up  the regulatory                                                                    
framework for  the mariculture  industry. He  announced that                                                                    
the bill was a priority  for the Mariculture Task Force that                                                                    
had  worked  for two  years  to  present a  cohesive,  well-                                                                    
considered plan  to move mariculture  forward in  the state.                                                                    
He shared  that the bill  was an important component  of the                                                                    
plan,  and  was  excited about  the  economic  opportunities                                                                    
presented within  the bill. He  thanked Senator  Stevens for                                                                    
being  a cosponsor  of  the bill,  and  for carrying  mirror                                                                    
legislation in the Senate.                                                                                                      
Senator   Olson  queried   any   opposition   to  the   fee.                                                                    
Representative  Ortiz stated  that the  increase in  the fee                                                                    
was due to  an unchanged fee in the past.  He stated that he                                                                    
had  not  heard concern  about  the  fee increase  from  the                                                                    
industry. He felt  that there would not be  a restriction in                                                                    
accessing the funds.                                                                                                            
Senator von  Imhof wondered whether  the bill  addressed any                                                                    
for-profit organizations. Representative  Ortiz replied that                                                                    
the   enhancement   organizations  had   been   historically                                                                    
nonprofit  organizations.  He  asserted   that  he  was  not                                                                    
opposed to profit-based organizations in the industry.                                                                          
9:50:42 AM                                                                                                                    
Senator von Imhof wondered how  the nonprofit and for profit                                                                    
organizations  interact through  the cycle  of a  biological                                                                    
species. Ms. Hakala  stressed that the bill  related to only                                                                    
nonprofit   organizations,    and   mirrored    the   salmon                                                                    
enhancement statutes.                                                                                                           
Co-Chair  MacKinnon noted  that  there  were some  questions                                                                    
from Department  of Fish and  Game (DFG). She  remarked that                                                                    
there would be questions about  the cost recovery fishery in                                                                    
the bill.  She asked  for a  contemplation about  crabs. She                                                                    
noted that  there were  different creatures  that reproduced                                                                    
differently,   and   were    different   than   the   salmon                                                                    
9:54:29 AM                                                                                                                    
SAM  RABUNG,  CHIEF,   STATEWIDE  AQUACULTURE  PLANNING  AND                                                                    
PERMITTING,   DEPARTMENT  OF   FISH  AND   GAME,  introduced                                                                    
Senator  von Imhof  remarked that  she  was concerned  about                                                                    
when it was appropriate for  the state to insert itself into                                                                    
a  commercially viable  profit cycle.  She noted  that there                                                                    
was a point in this  industry where there was not commercial                                                                    
viability,  so perhaps  a kickstart  was a  requirement. She                                                                    
wondered why  no commercial entity would  insert itself into                                                                    
the niche that the state  sought to fill. Mr. Rabung replied                                                                    
that  the   bill  was  modeled  after   the  salmon  fishery                                                                    
enhancement bill, which  had been law since  1974. The model                                                                    
was developed  because the fisheries resources  of the state                                                                    
were owned  by all the people  of the state. He  shared that                                                                    
allowing  enhancement  programs  be for  profit  allowed  an                                                                    
ownership aspect. He stated that  the for profit aspect came                                                                    
in  during  harvest,  therefore  anything  produced  by  the                                                                    
programs  were  available for  all  of  the common  property                                                                    
fisheries  of  the  state.  He   noted  that  the  nonprofit                                                                    
corporations  must pay  taxes, and  operated similarly  to a                                                                    
for  profit  with  the  exception  of  the  ability  to  pay                                                                    
Vice-Chair   Bishop    wondered   whether    the   nonprofit                                                                    
corporation  employed  an   Alaskan  workforce.  Mr.  Rabung                                                                    
replied in the affirmative.                                                                                                     
Senator  Micciche  noted  that  the bill  set  a  regulatory                                                                    
framework for  some species that  were either  challenged in                                                                    
production  or   were  new  commercially.  He   queried  the                                                                    
function  of the  bill.  Mr. Rabung  replied  that the  bill                                                                    
enabled several models of fisheries enhancement.                                                                                
Senator  Micciche  asserted that  the  reason  for the  bill                                                                    
allowed for  the regulation of  the new species.  Mr. Rabung                                                                    
10:01:35 AM                                                                                                                   
AT EASE                                                                                                                         
10:03:36 AM                                                                                                                   
10:03:43 AM                                                                                                                   
Senator Stevens  queried similarities in other  parts of the                                                                    
world. Mr. Rabung replied that  there were similar behaviors                                                                    
in other parts of the world,  but Alaska was very unique. He                                                                    
noted  that  Alaska  had  high   sideboards  in  the  salmon                                                                    
enhancement program.  Alaska was  restricted to  using local                                                                    
genetically  appropriate   stocks  for  each   projects.  He                                                                    
furthered  that  there was  no  breeding.  He remarked  that                                                                    
there  were   other  very  stringent  health   policies.  He                                                                    
stressed that  there was no  empirical evidence of  any harm                                                                    
to  natural production  to salmon  from  the salmon  fishery                                                                    
enhancement program.  He stressed that there  was an ability                                                                    
to maintain sustainability certifications.                                                                                      
10:05:38 AM                                                                                                                   
Co-Chair MacKinnon  queried feedback about  invasive species                                                                    
in Alaskan waters.                                                                                                              
Senator Micciche  asked about monitoring  of the  health and                                                                    
disease in the raising process  prior to release. Mr. Rabung                                                                    
replied that  there was a  stringent fish health  policy. He                                                                    
stated  that  it  specifically   dealt  with  practices  and                                                                    
disease  prevention, and  monitoring  for  all species.  The                                                                    
species must  be inspected and  approved before  release. He                                                                    
noted  that   there  were  pathology  labs   in  Juneau  and                                                                    
Anchorage that processed every sample.                                                                                          
Co-Chair MacKinnon announced the  current discussion for the                                                                    
children in the audience.                                                                                                       
Co-Chair MacKinnon queried  the species who would  be in the                                                                    
enhancement project.                                                                                                            
10:11:33 AM                                                                                                                   
GINNY  ECKERT,  PROFESSOR  COLLEGE OF  FISHERIES  AND  OCEAN                                                                    
SCIENCES,  UNIVERSITY  OF  ALASKA FAIRBANKS,  (UAF)  replied                                                                    
that  the bill  applied to  shellfish. She  stated that  the                                                                    
definition  was  in the  bill  as  a species  of  crustacean                                                                    
mollusk  or other  invertebrate  in any  stage  of its  life                                                                    
cycle that was indigenous to  state waters, and excluded any                                                                    
invasive species.  She stated that  any species of  crab and                                                                    
clam would fall into that category.                                                                                             
Co-Chair MacKinnon  asked how to prioritize  approval toward                                                                    
a  species that  might be  closed to  harvesting in  Alaskan                                                                    
waters.  Mr. Rabung  replied that  it was  designed to  be a                                                                    
user-driven project.  He stressed that the  department would                                                                    
not take  action until  there was  an application.  He noted                                                                    
that there  would be guidance  about the  appropriate review                                                                    
process, which was the same as salmon.                                                                                          
Vice-Chair  Bishop  queried  the  work of  Ms.  Eckert.  Ms.                                                                    
Eckert   replied  that   she  worked   as  faculty   at  the                                                                    
university.  She  explained  that  faculty  taught  classes,                                                                    
conducted research,  and provided  service. She  shared that                                                                    
she had  done research  on king crab,  and their  early life                                                                    
history to determine rehabilitation.                                                                                            
10:15:04 AM                                                                                                                   
Co-Chair MacKinnon  noted that there was  a predator problem                                                                    
on shellfish. She remarked that  there was an attempt to get                                                                    
national attention especially about  abalone. She noted that                                                                    
the  otters were  causing  an  unsustainability. Ms.  Eckert                                                                    
replied shared that she had  conducted research on sea otter                                                                    
diets,   and  the   complex  ecological   interactions.  She                                                                    
remarked that there had to be  an examination of where to do                                                                    
the enhancement.                                                                                                                
Co-Chair  MacKinnon  wondered  whether  the  review  process                                                                    
would include a geographic  location of the application. Mr.                                                                    
Rabung replied that each project  would be assessed locally.                                                                    
The projects  were intended to enhance  localized fisheries,                                                                    
and would be evaluated on a case by case basis.                                                                                 
Senator Micciche noted that  there were public opportunities                                                                    
in  the process.  Mr.  Rabung responded  that  there was  no                                                                    
ownership of the resource until harvest.                                                                                        
Senator  Micciche stressed  that it  was heartbreaking  when                                                                    
batches were required to be destroyed.                                                                                          
Vice-Chair Bishop discussed the fiscal notes.                                                                                   
10:23:33 AM                                                                                                                   
Vice-Chair  Bishop MOVED  to REPORT  HB  128 from  committee                                                                    
with  individual  recommendations  and  accompanying  fiscal                                                                    
notes. There being NO OBJECTION, it was so ordered.                                                                             
HB  128 was  REPORTED  out  of committee  with  a "do  pass"                                                                    
recommendation and  with one  new indeterminate  fiscal note                                                                    
from the  Department of Fish  and Game, one new  zero fiscal                                                                    
note from the Department of Fish  and Game, and one new zero                                                                    
fiscal note from the Department of Revenue.                                                                                     
10:23:46 AM                                                                                                                   
AT EASE                                                                                                                         
10:26:05 AM                                                                                                                   

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
HB 121 - Additional Document - Sponsor's Reply to House Judiciary Committee Questions 3.10.17.pdf SFIN 4/11/2018 9:00:00 AM
HB 121
HB 121 - Sponsor Statement 3.6.17.pdf SFIN 4/11/2018 9:00:00 AM
HB 121
HB 121 - Sectional Analysis 3.6.17.pdf SFIN 4/11/2018 9:00:00 AM
HB 121
HB 121 - Support Document - Federal memo to state plans 02.23.17.pdf SFIN 4/11/2018 9:00:00 AM
HB 121
HB 121 - Supporting Document-OSHA Fact Sheet 3.6.17.pdf SFIN 4/11/2018 9:00:00 AM
HB 121
HB 121-DOLWD Response to SFIN 4.11.18.pdf SFIN 4/11/2018 9:00:00 AM
HB 121