Legislature(1993 - 1994)

04/14/1993 03:43 PM Senate RES

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
                  SENATE RESOURCES COMMITTEE                                   
                         April  14, 1993                                       
                          3:43 p.m.                                            
 MEMBERS PRESENT                                                               
 Senator Mike Miller, Chairman                                                 
 Senator Loren Leman, Vice Chairman                                            
 Senator Steve Frank                                                           
 Senator Drue Pearce                                                           
 Senator Dave Donley                                                           
  MEMBERS ABSENT                                                               
 Senator Al Adams                                                              
 Senator Fred Zharoff                                                          
  COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                           
 CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 213(RES)(title am)                                      
 "An Act prohibiting the commissioner of natural resources from                
 permanently classifying state land, water, or land and water                  
 so that mining, mineral entry and location, mineral                           
 prospecting, and mineral leasing are precluded or are                         
 designated an incompatible use without an act of the                          
 legislature if the area involved contains more than 640                       
 contiguous acres except in certain situations; and providing                  
 for an effective date."                                                       
 HOUSE JOINT RESOLUTION NO. 28                                                 
 Supporting increased access near Mt. McKinley through                         
 establishment of a visitor activity area at Kantishna.                        
 HOUSE BILL NO. 133                                                            
 "An Act amending the definition of `value' for purposes of                    
 administration of fisheries taxes; and providing for an                       
 effective date."                                                              
  PREVIOUS SENATE COMMITTEE ACTION                                             
 HB 213 - No previous action to record.                                        
 HJR 28 - See Transportation minutes dated 3/23/93.                            
 HB 133 - No previous action to record.                                        
  WITNESS REGISTER                                                             
 Jack Phelps, Legislative Aide                                                 
 % Representative Pete Kott                                                    
 State Capitol                                                                 
 Juneau, Alaska 99811-1182                                                     
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Commented on HB 213                                    
 Representative Tom Brice                                                      
 State Capitol                                                                 
 Juneau, Alaska 99811-1182                                                     
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Sponsor of HJR 28.                                     
 Chad Coursey                                                                  
 Alaska Wilderness Resource Tourism Agency                                     
 P.O. Box 2553                                                                 
 Valdez, Alaska 99686                                                          
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Opposed HJR 28.                                        
 Lenore Sappington                                                             
 Denali Citizens Council                                                       
 2842 Bass                                                                     
 Anchorage, Alaska 99507                                                       
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Opposed HJR 28.                                        
 Dan Ashbrook                                                                  
 P.O. Box 149                                                                  
 Denali Park, Alaska 99755                                                     
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Supported HJR 28.                                      
 Joseph Fields                                                                 
 P.O. Box 71047                                                                
 Fairbanks, Alaska 99707                                                       
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Opposed HJR 28.                                        
 Valerie Mundt                                                                 
 P.O. Box 84608                                                                
 Fairbanks, Alaska 99708                                                       
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Supported HJR 28.                                      
 Irene Morris                                                                  
 Alaska Environmental Lobby                                                    
 P.O. Box 22151                                                                
 Juneau, Alaska 99801                                                          
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Opposed HJR 28.                                        
 Senator Dave Donley                                                           
 State Capitol                                                                 
 Juneau, Alaska 99811-1182                                                     
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Supported HJR 28.                                      
 Clyde Stoltzfus                                                               
 Department of Transportation and Public Facilities                            
 3132 Channel Dr.                                                              
 Juneau, Alaska 99801                                                          
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Supported HJR 28.                                      
 Connel Murray, Director                                                       
 Division of Tourism                                                           
 Department of Commerce and Economic Development                               
 P.O. Box 110801                                                               
 Juneau, Alaska 99811-0801                                                     
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Supported HJR 28.                                      
 Representative Carl Moses                                                     
 State Capitol                                                                 
 Juneau, Alaska 99811-1182                                                     
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Commented on HB 133.                                   
 Paul Dick, Juneau Operation                                                   
 Income and Excise Audit Division                                              
 Department of Revenue                                                         
 P.O. Box 110420                                                               
 Juneau, Alaska 99811-0420                                                     
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Commented on HB 133.                                   
 Jerry McCune                                                                  
 United Fishermen of Alaska                                                    
 211 4th Street #112                                                           
 Juneau, Alaska 99801                                                          
  POSITION STATEMENT:   Commented on HB 133.                                   
  ACTION NARRATIVE                                                             
 TAPE 93-21, SIDE A                                                            
 Number 001                                                                    
 SENATOR MILLER called the Resources Committee meeting to order                
 at 3:43 p.m. and announced  HB 213  (LIMIT ADMINISTRATIVE LAND                
 CLOSURES) to be up for consideration.                                         
 JACK PHELPS, Legislative Aide for Representative Kott, said                   
 the Alaska Minerals Commission and the Economic Mini Summit                   
 both supported this bill.                                                     
 SENATOR MILLER closed the hearing on HB 213 and said it was                   
 his intention to take up the bill again on Monday.                            
 SENATOR MILLER announced  HJR 28  (SUPPORT KANTISHNA AREA                     
 TOURISM DEVELOP'T) to be up for consideration.                                
 REPRESENTATIVE BRICE, prime sponsor of HJR 28, explained this                 
 resolution basically supports the concept of having the state                 
 establish a rail utility corridor that it can lease to the                    
 private sector for the development of an electric rail                        
 transportation system.  Currently over 400,000 people are                     
 being turned away from Denali Park who would like to go in.                   
 This corridor would provide the access.  It is environmentally                
 sound and is contained access.                                                
 CHAD COURSEY, Alaska Wilderness Recreation and Tourism                        
 Association, read testimony from Nancy Lethcoe, President.                    
 The testimony opposed HJR 28, because it is an anti-small                     
 business bill masquerading as tourism development.  He also                   
 opposed development of a visitor activity area and the                        
 establishment of a utility corridor into Kantishna by private                 
 Number 174                                                                    
 LENORE SAPPINGTON, Denali Citizens Council, strongly opposed                  
 HJR 28, because a road entrance from the north side would not                 
 be good for tourism, wildlife, or visitors.  The Kantishna                    
 Resource Management Plan, released in 1990, said commercial                   
 development was not good for the park.  HJR 28 is not an                      
 environmentally sensitive plan.                                               
 MS. SAPPINGTON said there are rumors that people have been                    
 turned away from the park which is simply not true.  She                      
 suggested the Finance Committee look at how much a new                        
 corridor would really cost.                                                   
 SENATOR MILLER said the co-chairmen of Finance would be                       
 looking at that.                                                              
 Number 280                                                                    
 DAN ASHBROOK, Denali Park, supported HJR 28.  He said the                     
 tourist trade is just going to increase and the road is                       
 saturated now.                                                                
 Number 303                                                                    
 JOSEPH FIELDS, Kantishna Group, Incorporated, supported HJR
 28. He said Mount Denali should be accessible.  There should                  
 also be a study of tourism and its impact to the land.                        
 Tourism should have the same standing as the other resources                  
 of the state, MR. FIELDS said.                                                
 Number 342                                                                    
 VALERIE MUNDT, member of Fairbanks Chamber of Commerce,                       
 supported HJR 28 and development in the Kantishna area by the                 
 private sector.  She said there is not a watershed in the area                
 that hasn't been mined.  It is not yet a wilderness.  Every                   
 opportunity there has developed from mining.                                  
 MS. MUNDT suggested changing "rail utility corridor" to a                     
 "transportation corridor."                                                    
 IRENE MORRIS, Alaska Environmental Lobby, opposed HJR 28,                     
 because it advocates aggressive pursuit of a new access route                 
 and more development in Denali Park's Kantishna area.  She                    
 said DOT is currently conducting a location study for improved                
 access to Kantishna.                                                          
 MS. MORRIS stated the proposed railroad would cost $189                       
 million dollars.  She asked how they would do that without                    
 public money and who would pay to maintain and repair it?                     
 SENATOR MILLER asked if the Alaska Environmental Lobby was                    
 against a southern entrance.  MS. MORRIS said they were not                   
 against it.  SENATOR MILLER said that many environmental                      
 groups opposed southern development.                                          
 Number 424                                                                    
 SENATOR DONLEY asked if there could be essentially a circuit                  
 of traffic from south to north.  He asked what was so                         
 sensitive in that area where mining had been a thriving                       
 industry.  MS. MORRIS said she would have to get back to them                 
 on that.                                                                      
 Number 439                                                                    
 CLYDE STOLTZFUS, Special Assistant, Department of DOT,                        
 supported HJR 28 and access to Kantishna, in general.  He said                
 they are currently doing a location and environmental study                   
 for access from the Parks Highway to McGrath, with access into                
 Kantishna.  This resolution would not change their activity.                  
 That is why there is a $0 fiscal note. They will look at both                 
 road and rail access.                                                         
 MR. STOTLTZFUS said there are  9 - 10 RS2477's in the northern                
 part of the Park.  That means there has been a lot of mining                  
 activity in the northern part of the Park - a lot more than                   
 in the southern part.  So it is actually more environmentally                 
 benign to go into the northern part of the Park.                              
 Number 459                                                                    
 CONNEL MURRAY, Director of Tourism, supported the general                     
 concepts in HJR 28.  He said Alaska is getting more and more                  
 independent visitors (as opposed to those who come on a                       
 "package deal").  They don't have advance arrangements made                   
 for them.  Based on mail and telephone calls to the Division                  
 of Tourism, they know there are many thousands of visitors who                
 come to Alaska with the express purpose of visiting Denali who                
 cannot get into the park.  The people who do go are jammed                    
 into a narrow and overcrowded corridor.  The addition of a                    
 Kantishna access could double the number of people who could                  
 enjoy the Park.                                                               
 SENATOR MILLER thanked everyone for their testimony and closed                
 the public hearing on HJR 28.                                                 
 SENATOR MILLER announced  HB 133  (DEFINITION OF VALUE FOR                    
 FISHERIES TAX) to be up for consideration.                                    
 SENATOR MILLER announced a short recess and when they came                    
 back to order REPRESENTATIVE MOSES explained HB 133.                          
 SENATOR LEMAN wanted assurance the cost of transportation to                  
 a distant cannery would not be subject to the tax.                            
 PAUL DICK, Department of Revenue, said they are looking at the                
 price actually paid to the fisherman.  He clarified that he                   
 would look to see what kind of deliveries were normal practice                
 before allowing the exemption.                                                
 TAPE 93-21, SIDE B                                                            
 Number 580                                                                    
 REPRESENTATIVE MOSES said quite often fishermen are paid more                 
 for cannery delivery.  The fisherman would not make the                       
 delivery unless there was some profit.  But they should pay                   
 the tax based on the price at the point of delivery.                          
 JERRY MCCUNE, United Fishermen of Alaska, said all they want                  
 to do is get the value of the product when it is sold.  They                  
 want the ability to tax the bonuses, ice, etc. a fishermen                    
 gets as the complete value of the fish he sells.  The current                 
 law is unclear on this issue.                                                 
 SENATOR MILLER closed the public hearing on HB 133, stating                   
 that it would be back before the committee at its next                        
 meeting.  He adjourned the meeting at 4:40 p.m.                               

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