Legislature(2015 - 2016)BARNES 124

03/19/2015 11:30 AM ECON. DEV., TOURISM, & ARCTIC POLICY

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Audio Topic
11:30:22 AM Start
11:30:42 AM Department of Commerce, Community & Economic Development
11:41:06 AM Adjourn
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
+ Confirmation Hearing: TELECONFERENCED
Commissioner Chris Hladick, Dept. of Commerce,
Community & Economic Development
                    ALASKA STATE LEGISLATURE                                                                                  
 HOUSE SPECIAL COMMITTEE ON ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT, TOURISM, AND                                                                
                         ARCTIC POLICY                                                                                        
                         March 19, 2015                                                                                         
                           11:30 a.m.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Representative Bob Herron, Chair                                                                                                
Representative Craig Johnson                                                                                                    
Representative Louise Stutes                                                                                                    
Representative Cathy Tilton                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Representative Charisse Millett                                                                                                 
Representative Dan Ortiz                                                                                                        
Representative Adam Wool                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
CONFIRMATION HEARINGS(S):                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
     Department of Commerce, Community & Economic Development,                                                                
     Commissioner                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
     Chris Hladick - Unalaska                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
     CONFIRMATION - ADVANCED                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
PREVIOUS COMMITTEE ACTION                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
No previous action to record                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
WITNESS REGISTER                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
CHRIS HLADICK, Commissioner Designee                                                                                            
Department of Commerce, Community & Economic Development                                                                        
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  During the confirmation hearing for the                                                                  
commissioner of the Department of Commerce, Community & Economic                                                                
Development, provided his background and answered questions.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
ACTION NARRATIVE                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
11:30:22 AM                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR BOB HERRON  called the House Special  Committee on Economic                                                             
Development,  Tourism,  and Arctic  Policy  meeting  to order  at                                                               
11:30 a.m.   Representatives Stutes, Tilton,  Johnson, and Herron                                                               
were present at the call to order.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
^CONFIRMATION HEARINGS(S):                                                                                                      
                   CONFIRMATION HEARINGS(S):                                                                                
^Department of Commerce, Community & Economic Development                                                                       
    Department of Commerce, Community & Economic Development                                                                
                                                                                                                                
11:30:42 AM                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR HERRON announced  that the only order of  business would be                                                               
a confirmation hearing for the  commissioner of the Department of                                                               
Commerce, Community & Economic Development (DCCED).                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
11:31:23 AM                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
CHRIS  HLADICK, Commissioner  Designee,  Department of  Commerce,                                                               
Community & Economic Development  (DCCED), informed the committee                                                               
his experience  includes 25 years  in city management  in Alaska,                                                               
from  Galena and  Dillingham to  Unalaska.   During this  time he                                                               
managed many projects  and he said he looked  forward to bringing                                                               
his skills to DCCED.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  HERRON inquired  as to  why Commissioner  Designee Hladick                                                               
would leave his present position.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
COMMISSIONER  DESIGNEE  HLADICK  said although  Unalaska  is  the                                                               
greatest place to live, work, and  raise kids, his kids are grown                                                               
and off to college so he took this opportunity.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR   HERRON   appreciated  Commissioner   Designee   Hladick's                                                               
willingness to bring  his leadership skill sets  to DCCED because                                                               
of the challenges  ahead.  He asked what could  be done about the                                                               
Alaska Marine Highway System "westward."                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
COMMISSIONER  DESIGNEE HLADICK  observed this  has been  an issue                                                               
for Southwest  Alaska for  many years,  and his  understanding is                                                               
that the  proposed reductions are  "double cuts because  not only                                                               
are you reducing the service,  you're reducing the revenues."  He                                                               
has planned to  speak with the commissioner of  the Department of                                                               
Transportation &  Public Facilities about the  importance of this                                                               
issue for the region.   Governments in Southwest Alaska have been                                                               
working for more ferry visits  because the difference in the cost                                                               
of goods transported by ferry or  barge is a huge economic driver                                                               
for the region.   Commissioner Designee Hladick  seeks to educate                                                               
folks about this topic.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
11:34:52 AM                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE STUTES  reminded the committee that  fisheries are                                                               
the largest employer in the  state.  The Alaska Seafood Marketing                                                               
Institute (ASMI)  has had  its budget reduced,  at the  same time                                                               
that  European  countries  and  Russia  are  spending  increasing                                                               
amounts  of money  to promote  their fisheries.   Along  with the                                                               
issue of  the certification of fish,  she asked for any  ideas on                                                               
how Alaska  can keep  its fish  in the  forefront of  the seafood                                                               
market.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
COMMISSIONER  DESIGNEE HLADICK  said this  is an  important issue                                                               
which he  has discussed  with the  seafood industry  in Unalaska.                                                               
Factors  are:   sanctions on  Russia, the  dollar, the  yen, less                                                               
fish  going  to   Japan,  fish  going  to   China  for  secondary                                                               
processing  that is  then sent  to Japan,  and cultural  changes.                                                               
The question remains  how the state will continue  to promote its                                                               
fish  with  a  reduced  budget.   Commissioner  Designee  Hladick                                                               
expressed  the need  to  sit  down with  stakeholders  to find  a                                                               
solution because  of the  huge impact  to Kodiak,  Unalaska, Sand                                                               
Point, Dillingham,  King Salmon,  the Southeast  communities, and                                                               
Kenai.                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE STUTES agreed  and relayed that 70  percent of the                                                               
population in  the Anchorage  and Matanuska-Susitna  Valley areas                                                               
are affiliated  with the fishing  industry, thus this has  a huge                                                               
economic impact to the entire state.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR HERRON  referred to Governor Bill  Walker's transition team                                                               
report  on economic  development contained  within the  committee                                                               
packet,  and asked  which  of  the five  priority  issues in  the                                                               
transition report  would be Commissioner Designee  Hladick's main                                                               
focus.                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
COMMISSIONER  DESIGNEE  HLADICK  observed  that  as  in  previous                                                               
administrations, he  will look at  economic development  from the                                                               
standpoint of  the need to replace  oil and gas development.   To                                                               
achieve  this  on  a  large  scale,  cheap  energy  provides  the                                                               
building blocks;  however, how to  attain cheap energy is  one of                                                               
the issues  on which to  work.  He  noted that DCCED  is reaching                                                               
out  to new  industries, such  as Lockheed  Martin's facility  in                                                               
Anchorage, and  the drone industry.   Needed are  new businesses,                                                               
and  keeping current  businesses,  as discussed  recently by  the                                                               
cabinet; in  fact, there  are plans underway  on how  to maintain                                                               
and grow the business climate in the state.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
11:39:54 AM                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  STUTES  moved  [to  forward  the  name  of  Chris                                                               
Hladick to the position of  commissioner, Department of Commerce,                                                               
Community  &  Economic  Development,  to the  joint  session  for                                                               
consideration.]    She  said  the   House  Special  Committee  on                                                               
Economic  Development, Tourism,  and Arctic  Policy has  reviewed                                                               
the  qualifications of  the  following  governor's appointee  and                                                               
recommends  that his  name be  forwarded to  a joint  session for                                                               
consideration.   She  reminded  the committee  that [signing  the                                                               
report  regarding appointments  to boards  and commissions  in no                                                               
way reflects  individual members' approval or  disapproval of the                                                               
appointees, and that the nominations  are merely forwarded to the                                                               
full legislature for confirmation or  rejection].  There being no                                                               
objection, Chris Hladick's name was forwarded.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
11:41:06 AM                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
ADJOURNMENT                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
There being no  further business before the  committee, the House                                                               
Special Committee  on Economic  Development, Tourism,  and Arctic                                                               
Policy meeting was adjourned at 11:41 a.m.                                                                                      

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
Chris Hladick Resume.pdf HEDA 3/19/2015 11:30:00 AM
HEDA 3.19.15 - Governor's Transition Paper on Economic Development.pdf HEDA 3/19/2015 11:30:00 AM
HEDA 3.19.15 - DCCED Section of the LAA Handbook on Alaska State Government.pdf HEDA 3/19/2015 11:30:00 AM