Legislature(1993 - 1994)

03/31/1994 03:38 PM Senate TRA

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
 as the next order of business before the Senate Transportation                
 Committee.  The chairman calls a representative from the prime                
 sponsor's office to testify.                                                  
 Number 463                                                                    
 MICHAEL FINKELSTEIN, Aide, Senator Donley, reads the sponsor                  
 statement on SR 4.                                                            
 Number 480                                                                    
 SENATOR KERTTULA comments SR 4 makes sense to him.                            
 Number 487                                                                    
 SENATOR KELLY asks if there isn't a requirement in California to              
 put an emissions control package on new cars sold in the state.  He           
 wonders if the California figures might not be applicable to                  
 Number 490                                                                    
 SENATOR KERTTULA thinks it might make sense anyway to not burden              
 the system with inspections every year.                                       
 Number 494                                                                    
 CHAIRMAN SHARP asks if there are any more questions for Mr.                   
 Finkelstein.  Hearing none, he calls a representative from the                
 Department of Environmental Conservation to testify.                          
 Number 500                                                                    
 LEONARD VERRELLI, Chief, Air Quality Management Section, Department           
 of Environmental Conservation (DEC) says SR 4 conflicts with plans            
 submitted by Anchorage and Fairbanks to the Environmental                     
 Protection Agency (EPA).  Anchorage and Fairbanks' programs are               
 based on a stringency factor that requires that the automobiles be            
 checked annually.  SR 4 would be construed by EPA as a relaxation             
 to the applications submitted just days ago.                                  
 MR. VERRELLI states that two year emissions testing programs are              
 not without controversy, and California is not the bellwether of              
 emissions testing programs for Alaska.  DEC does not recommend                
 passing this resolution unless it is modified in some way so that             
 it appears to be credible as far as Anchorage and Fairbanks'                  
 proposals to meet emissions reduction criteria.                               
 Number 525                                                                    
 MR. VERRELLI also says he begs to differ with the sponsor's                   
 assertion that vehicle emissions would stay in calibration for two            
 years.  The EPA has tested hundreds of thousands of tests, and nine           
 months to a year is probably the maximum that a car will stay in              
 tune.  Newer cars are getting better, but the majority of cars in             
 Alaska are still elderly.  SR 4 could be strengthened to offer the            
 EPA something in exchange for a two-year emissions test.  But that            
 would put a burden on Anchorage and Fairbanks to come up with                 
 strategies which may be onerous to meet the reductions.                       
 Number 534                                                                    
 SENATOR KERTTULA notes SR 4 is just a simple resolution, so it does           
 not have the strength of a formal conveyance.                                 
 MR. VERRELLI says he just wants the committee to be aware that                
 SR 4 does conflict with the proposals submitted to the EPA by                 
 Anchorage and Fairbanks.                                                      
 Number 541                                                                    
 SENATOR KELLY asks Mr. Verrelli that, if the EPA was to allow two             
 year emissions testing, Anchorage and Fairbanks wouldn't take                 
 advantage of that.                                                            
 MR. VERRELLI replies that the EPA couldn't authorize two year                 
 registration or inspections at this point in time, unless both                
 Anchorage and Fairbanks did something to replace the reductions               
 that are gained by the one year inspection program.                           
 Number 545                                                                    
 SENATOR KELLY asks if SR 4 is asking the federal government to go             
 from one year inspections to two year inspections.                            
 Several people answer that is correct.                                        
 SENATOR KELLY states, if that change is made, then Anchorage and              
 Fairbanks would no longer be required to have inspections every               
 MR. VERRELLI responds that, without an annual registration, there             
 would not be enough credit for Anchorage and Fairbanks to meet the            
 required air quality standards.                                               
 Number 553                                                                    
 SENATOR KERTTULA suggests that, by deleting lines 14 and 15 on page           
 one, SR 4 might not be in conflict with the proposals just                    
 submitted to the EPA by Anchorage and Fairbanks.  Senator Kerttula            
 proposes an amendment to delete that language.                                
 CHAIRMAN SHARP, hearing no objection, notes that Senator Kerttula's           
 amendment has been adopted.  The chairman asks the pleasure of the            
 Number 564                                                                    
 SENATOR KERTTULA makes a motion to discharge SR 4 from the Senate             
 Transportation Committee with individual recommendations.                     
 Number 566                                                                    
 CHAIRMAN SHARP, hearing no objection, orders SR 4 released from               
 committee with individual recommendations.                                    

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