Legislature(1993 - 1994)

03/16/1993 03:33 PM TRA

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
  The next order of business was SB 16 (AIDEA BONDS: ANCHORAGE                 
  SEAFOOD FACILITY).  SENATOR KERTTULA asked if a similar bill                 
  was introduced  last year.   SENATOR ELLIS,  sponsor of  the                 
  measure, it was  in the  AIDA bill.   The private  financing                 
  wasn't together last year so it was dropped from the regular                 
  bill.  The AIDA  bill that included the airport  hanger died                 
  in  the  Senate  at   the  end  of  session  and   then  was                 
  resurrected, in a scaled down  form eliminating the project,                 
  in the three day special session.                                            
  Senator  Ellis explained that the bill  would create 450 new                 
  year around jobs for resident Alaskans.  He said there would                 
  be about  200 construction  jobs during  the first phase  of                 
  construction of the  Alaska Seafood Center.   He said he  is                 
  proposing to authorize revenue bonds in the  amount of about                 
  $50 million to  match about $115  million of private  sector                 
  investments.     If  the  private   financing  doesn't  come                 
  together, there is  nothing at  risk from the  public.   The                 
  total amount for  the project is  about $165 million and  is                 
  the first of its kind in  Alaska.  It is for secondary  fish                 
  processing facilities  - cold  storage facilities.   Senator                 
  Ellis said  it is time to  reverse the trend  of diverting a                 
  lot of fishery resources and  processing to other states and                 
  countries.    The  shore  based facility  will  allow  us to                 
  achieve some of the goals we have been discussing for years.                 
   He said even though the  private financing isn't completely                 
  firmed up at  this point, the  AIDA Board is supportive  and                 
  wants to see the project move forward.                                       
  SENATOR KELLY said he is confused  about the location of the                 
  project.  Senator  Ellis said nobody knows exactly where the                 
  site is as the private developer has some land optioned.  It                 
  is not on  airport land as  the airport was concerned  about                 
  using up their land for private  development.  They also had                 
  concerns about  birds in the  air traffic pattern.   Senator                 
  Ellis said Mr.  Howard Benedict and people  involved reacted                 
  very strongly  because it  is secondary  seafood processing.                 
  They don't plan to have any kind of fish waste or smell.  He                 
  said  he  believes there  is  some  land  optioned near  the                 
  airport.    There  will  be  the  close  proximity  to  take                 
  advantage of  the transportation  hub.   Senator Ellis  said                 
  nobody  knows  where  it  is  as  the   developer  is  still                 
  speculating on the price of the land.                                        
  SENATOR KELLY said he is prepared to support the bill.                       
  Number 140                                                                   
  SENATOR KERTTULA moved  that SB  16 pass out  of the  Senate                 
  Transportation  Committee  with  individual recommendations.                 
  Hearing no objection, the motion carried.                                    

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