Legislature(2009 - 2010)BUTROVICH 205

04/08/2010 01:00 PM Senate TRANSPORTATION

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* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
Moved CSSB 152(TRA) Out of Committee
Moved CSHB 366(JUD) Out of Committee
Moved HJR 47 Out of Committee
               HJR 47-SMALL VESSEL CARGO EXEMPTION                                                                          
SENATOR KOOKESH announced the consideration of HJR 47.                                                                          
1:42:46 PM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE  KYLE  JOHANSEN,  sponsor  of  HJR  47,  said  the                                                               
resolution  asks the  U.S. Coast  Guard to  amend regulations  to                                                               
allow small  vessels to transport  concurrently fuel,  cargo, and                                                               
passengers. He  related that  constituents of  his are  trying to                                                               
fill a  niche market  to deliver  supplies to  remote communities                                                               
along the coast that  are too large for a plane  but too small to                                                               
warrant delivery  by barge.  He explained that  a father  and son                                                               
partnership  designed and  received  certification  to build  and                                                               
operate one  vessel. They are not  able to build a  second vessel                                                               
without a change  in Coast Guard regulations, which  has not been                                                               
HJR   47  asks   the   Coast  Guard   to   consider  the   unique                                                               
transportation   challenges   in   Alaska   and   other   coastal                                                               
communities nationwide and change the regulations.                                                                              
SENATOR MENARD  stated support for  the resolution and  asked how                                                               
much fuel oil the vessel carries.                                                                                               
REPRESENTATIVE  JOHANSEN  said  he  has someone  online  who  can                                                               
provide details.                                                                                                                
SENATOR  MEYER asked  if the  vessel was  built in  the Ketchikan                                                               
REPRESENTATIVE  JOHANSEN said  no;  he isn't  sure  where it  was                                                               
built,  but this  class of  vessel would  certainly interest  the                                                               
shipyards in Ketchikan, Sitka and others in Alaska.                                                                             
1:47:10 PM                                                                                                                    
DAVE SPOKELY, Power  Systems and Supplies of  Alaska (PSSA), said                                                               
that with the change in the  timber industry there was a need for                                                               
smaller  vessels to  deliver fuel  and supplies  to small  remote                                                               
communities. He and his partner  designed the high-speed, 44-foot                                                               
aluminum landing  craft in conjunction  with the Coast  Guard and                                                               
the  Alaska Department  of Environmental  Conservation (DEC).  It                                                               
carries 3000 gallons  of fuel and is a  spill-response vessel. It                                                               
was built  in the  Seattle area,  but he owns  the design  and is                                                               
prepared to build the vessels in Alaska.                                                                                        
SENATOR  MENARD asked  if Homeland  Security has  any issue  with                                                               
this type of vessel.                                                                                                            
MR.  SPOKELY said  yes. Homeland  Security didn't  initially take                                                               
issue, but their attorneys said  the current regulations wouldn't                                                               
allow   aluminum  vessels   to  commercially   carry  bulk   fuel                                                               
regardless of  the quantity. Coast  Guard Station  Juneau started                                                               
the  process  to write  the  regulations,  but Homeland  Security                                                               
wouldn't authorize  funding for  development of  the regulations.                                                               
Without new regulations he is unable to expand his fleet.                                                                       
REPRESENTATIVE JOHANSEN  added that  his office has  been working                                                               
with Alaska's congressional delegation  and all three members are                                                               
1:51:46 PM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR MENARD  asked if it is  safe to say that  new regulations                                                               
in this regard could promote up to 100 jobs.                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE  JOHANSEN  replied he  isn't  sure  how many  jobs                                                               
might  result,  but he  understands  that  Mr. Spokely  has  been                                                               
overwhelmed  with requests  for the  vessel's services.  He added                                                               
that he  and other Southeast  legislators are trying to  create a                                                               
marine center in southern Southeast Alaska.                                                                                     
SENATOR KOOKESH closed public testimony and asked the will of                                                                   
the committee.                                                                                                                  
1:53:15 PM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR  PASKVAN  moved to  report  HJR  47 from  committee  with                                                               
individual  recommendations and  attached  fiscal note(s).  There                                                               
being no objection,  HJR 47 moved from  the Senate Transportation                                                               
Standing Committee.                                                                                                             

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