Legislature(1997 - 1998)

02/18/1998 03:40 PM RES

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
txt
              SENATE RESOURCES COMMITTEE                                       
                  February 18, 1998                                            
                      3:40 P.M.                                                
                                                                               
MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                
                                                                               
Senator Rick Halford, Chairman                                                 
Senator Lyda Green, Vice Chairman                                              
Senator Loren Leman                                                            
Senator Bert Sharp                                                             
Senator Robin Taylor                                                           
Senator John Torgerson                                                         
Senator Georgianna Lincoln                                                     
                                                                               
MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                 
                                                                               
All Members Present                                                            
                                                                               
COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                             
                                                                               
CS FOR SPONSOR SUBSTITUTE FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 128(FIN) am                       
"An Act relating to water quality; directing the Department of                 
Environmental Conservation to conduct water quality research;                  
establishing the Water Science Oversight Board; and providing for              
an effective date."                                                            
                                                                               
     - HEARD AND HELD                                                          
                                                                               
CS FOR SPONSOR SUBSTITUTE FOR HOUSE JOINT RESOLUTION NO.49(RES)                
Relating to opposition to a moratorium on the building of roads in             
the roadless areas of national forests.                                        
                                                                               
     - MOVED SCS CSSSHJR 49(RES) OUT OF COMMITTEE                              
                                                                               
CS FOR SENATE BILL NO. 204(CRA)                                                
"An Act providing the commissioner of natural resources with the               
authority to make grants of state land to municipalities for the               
construction and operation of sport and recreational facilities and            
structures."                                                                   
                                                                               
     - MOVED CSSB 204(RES) OUT OF COMMITTEE                                    
                                                                               
SENATE BILL NO. 213                                                            
"An Act extending the termination date of the Alaska Minerals                  
Commission."                                                                   
                                                                               
     - MOVED SB 213 OUT OF COMMITTEE                                           
                                                                               
PREVIOUS SENATE COMMITTEE ACTION                                               
                                                                               
HB 128 - No previous action to consider.                                       
                                                                               
HJR 49 - No previous action to consider.                                       
                                                                               
SB 204 - See Community & Regional Affairs minutes dated 2/9/98.                
                                                                               
SB 213 - No previous action to consider.                                       
                                                                               
WITNESS REGISTER                                                               
                                                                               
Representative Bill Hudson                                                     
State Capitol Bldg.                                                            
Juneau, AK 99811-1182                                                          
POSITION STATEMENT: Sponsor of HB 128.                                         
                                                                               
Mr. Michael Conway, Director                                                   
Division of Air and Water Quality                                              
Department of Environmental Conservation                                       
410 Willoughby Ave.                                                            
Juneau, AK 99811-1182                                                          
POSITION STATEMENT: Supported HB 128.                                          
                                                                               
Mr. Clynt Nauman, President                                                    
Alaska Council of Producers                                                    
1133 West 15th Ave.                                                            
Anchorage, AK 99501                                                            
POSITION STATEMENT: Supported HB 128.                                          
                                                                               
Ms. Charlotte MacCay                                                           
Cominco/Red Dog                                                                
Anchorage, AK 99501                                                            
POSITION STATEMENT: Supported HB 128.                                          
                                                                               
Ms. Peggy Wilcox                                                               
P.O. Box 22051                                                                 
Juneau, AK 99802                                                               
POSITION STATEMENT: Commented on HB 128.                                       
                                                                               
Ms. Beth Carlson                                                               
Sierra Club                                                                    
19632 Delphin Circle                                                           
Eagle River, AK 99577                                                          
POSITION STATEMENT: Opposed HB 128.                                            
                                                                               
Ms. Patti Saunders, Assistant Director                                         
Alaska Conservation Voice                                                      
750 W. 2nd Avenue, #109                                                        
Anchorage, AK 99577                                                            
POSITION STATEMENT: Opposed HB 128.                                            
                                                                               
Mr. Peter Ecklund, Staff                                                       
Representative Bill Williams                                                   
State Capitol Bldg.                                                            
Juneau, AK 99811-1182                                                          
POSITION STATEMENT: Read sponsor statement for HJR 49.                         
                                                                               
Mr. Mark Stahl, Manager                                                        
Lands and Resource Department                                                  
Chugach Alaska Corporation                                                     
560 E. 34th Ave., #200                                                         
Anchorage, AK 99503                                                            
POSITION STATEMENT: Commented on HJR 49.                                       
                                                                               
Mr. Jack Phelps, Executive Director                                            
Alaska Forest Association                                                      
111 Stedman, Ste. 200                                                          
Ketchikan, AK 99901                                                            
POSITION STATEMENT: Supported HJR 49.                                          
                                                                               
Ms. Mel Krogseng, Staff                                                        
Senator Robin Taylor                                                           
State Capitol Bldg.                                                            
Juneau, AK 99811-1182                                                          
POSITION STATEMENT: Read sponsor statement for SB 204.                         
                                                                               
Senator Jim Duncan                                                             
State Capitol Bldg.                                                            
Juneau, AK 99811-1182                                                          
POSITION STATEMENT: Sponsor of SB 213.                                         
                                                                               
ACTION NARRATIVE                                                               
                                                                               
TAPE 98-11, SIDE A                                                             
Number 001                                                                     
                                                                               
        HB 128 - WATER QUALITY; WATER SCIENCE OVERSIGHT BD                     
                                                                               
CHAIRMAN HALFORD called the Senate Resources Committee meeting to              
order at 3:40 p.m. and announced HB 128 to be up for consideration.            
                                                                               
REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON said he introduced HB 128 to identify a                  
better way to establish water quality standards in Alaska.  It                 
seeks a scientific fact based understanding of our unique water                
bodies and uses, and establishes a mechanism for DEC to form a                 
partnership with interested parties to seek funding for water                  
quality research.  The goal of the research is to substitute                   
science and certainty for the emotional political debate that                  
characterizes water quality regulations in the State.  Without                 
Alaska specific arctic/subarctic research, the federal                         
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will not accept Alaska                   
specific changes to our own water quality regulations.  The vast               
majority of interested parties agree to a concept of forming a                 
partnership to seek funding for five years of technical research.              
The Alaska Science and Technology Foundation, monies direct from               
Washington D.C. and Senator Stevens, and industry money are                    
potential sources of funding.  However, they can only accept                   
application from a public agency if it's in partnership with a                 
private organization.  Federal funds may be sought at a future date            
and it's not his intent to request general funds for this research.            
He said this is not simply pro-mining legislation; it affects                  
minerals development, fisheries and processing, municipal out                  
falls, and any discharge into a body of water in Alaska.  This bill            
is about the preservation of the image and quality of clear,                   
pristine waters in Alaska and embodies the concept of multiple use.            
The mining industry has said they can support a water standard, if             
it is based on science.                                                        
                                                                               
CHAIRMAN HALFORD noted that DEC indicated using general fund                   
monies.                                                                        
                                                                               
REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON clarified that he is not asking for general              
funds to finance the science.  DEC has a need for funds to                     
establish the partnering, but not for the five years of scientific             
basis.                                                                         
                                                                               
SENATOR TAYLOR offered technical amendments for the dates on page              
4, line 18 to change "1997" to "1998;" also on page 4, line 20 to              
change "2002" to "2003."  There were no objections and the                     
amendments were adopted.                                                       
                                                                               
SENATOR TAYLOR offered another technical amendment on page 3, line             
13 where the Board members are compensated for $300 per day.  It               
would seem more appropriate, if they are compensated at least at               
the same rate that legislators received per day which when you                 
divide the $24,000 salary into 365 days, comes out to a daily rate             
of $65.78.  So he rounded it off to $66 saying they would still get            
per diem on top of that.                                                       
                                                                               
CHAIRMAN HALFORD said he would take that under advisement since he             
didn't formally offer the amendment.                                           
                                                                               
SENATOR LEMAN asked if it would be reasonable to limit any one who             
is a contractor to the Department as a Board member or would that              
eliminate some of the talent they want on that Board.                          
                                                                               
REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON said he would like to think about that and               
talk to some people from the mining industry and other industries              
he is trying to help.                                                          
                                                                               
MR. MIKE CONWAY, Director, Air and Water Quality Division, said                
they supported this bill.                                                      
                                                                               
MR. CLYNT NAUMAN, President, Council of Alaska Producers, supported            
this bill, also.  They see water quality at a point where it is                
critical to the industry and to the State.                                     
                                                                               
MS. CHARLOTTE MACKAY, Cominco, stated that water criteria for the              
State of Alaska is based on criteria adapted from studies conducted            
in more temperate areas of the United States.  One of the main                 
inhibitors in getting water quality research is that once the study            
is completed, there is no balanced credible audience of appropriate            
expertise to evaluate the study's conclusions and there is no                  
commitment on behalf of the State to apply scientifically supported            
recommendations.                                                               
                                                                               
HB 128 sets up a Water Quality Board that will provide for the                 
credible evaluation of water quality research studies to serve the             
State as well as convince the EPA.  It also provides for a                     
commitment on behalf of the State to seriously consider the Board's            
recommendations.  It should be noted that neither the State nor the            
industries pursuing this research can predict the outcome of these             
studies, but are committed to living with the results of standards             
based on sound science.  At present, they have initiated studies               
through the Alaska Science and Technology Foundation as co-                    
applicants with DEC and ADF&G to determine the level at which                  
totally dissolved solids become toxic.  Further studies regarding              
PH and [indisc] toxicity are anticipated in the future.                        
                                                                               
SENATOR TAYLOR said he understood that Alaska had one water quality            
standard which was for drinking water.                                         
                                                                               
MS. MACKAY responded no; that there are various standards for                  
protection of  aquatic life, industrial uses, etc.                             
                                                                               
Number 254                                                                     
                                                                               
MS. PEGGY WILCOX testified on behalf of herself and said there are             
a few things that concerned her.  Although the legislative intent              
is fantastic, she looked at the Water Science Oversight Board which            
would be qualified individuals, but political appointees.  They                
would review a plan put together by DEC and interested parties, and            
if you remove DEC, the interested parties who have the education               
are probably going to be employed by the industry.  Of the three               
things they are to examine, the third one is relative costs and                
benefits of toxicity testing methods.  She was also concerned with             
the removal of drinking water (the human element) from the bill, or            
making differentiation between water that's going to be coming out             
of the outfall of a mine pipe and water that could potentially be              
consumed.                                                                      
                                                                               
She also agreed with Senator Taylor about the $300 fee which would             
come out to $12,000 for five members at a minimum of four days.                
She thought the $12,000 could be better used in hiring another                 
scientist.                                                                     
                                                                               
SENATOR LEMAN asked her to clarify what she meant by removal of the            
human element.                                                                 
                                                                               
MS. WILCOX explained on page 2, lines 9, 11, and 14 talk about                 
aquatic life criteria, toxicity testing procedures, and relative               
costs and benefits of testing methods.  This would be what the                 
Board would be addressing.  She thought adding a fourth criteria               
regarding the extent toxics are already present and affecting                  
public health would be useful.                                                 
                                                                               
REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON said the intent was to set up as impartial a             
board as can possibly be done as an oversight board of scientific              
research that will be done by real scientists.  Both industry and              
the regulators will, then, have a basis on which they can establish            
standards on which they can manipulate the water.  He didn't think             
there was any lack of the human element and there will be testing              
of what the water body currently consists of as they start up.                 
From that they will determine what the effects would be on that                
base for various applications.                                                 
                                                                               
Number 350                                                                     
                                                                               
MR. CONWAY commented that the human health criteria is well                    
documented because human beings are pretty much the same here as               
they are in other parts of the country.  Human health isn't at                 
issue, but the kinds of species we find in Alaska and what is their            
ability is to respond to things that occur naturally in Alaska that            
may not be occurring in other places.  He added that any time there            
is an operation that goes into place there is a permitting process             
which takes these standards and applies them to the situation that             
is at hand.  There is rigorous criteria to go through to make sure             
public health would not be in danger.                                          
                                                                               
MS. WILCOX said the term "cost benefit of toxicity" makes her                  
cringe.                                                                        
                                                                               
MR. CONWAY explained that was directed at the methods of getting               
the information you need.  If you can get it from a field test kit             
or something easy like that, why should you have to send samples               
potentially out of state and spend thousands of dollars.                       
                                                                               
MS. WILCOX thanked them for answering her questions.                           
                                                                               
MS. BETH CARLSON, Sierra Club, said they do not support the bill as            
written.  She questioned that the Board would be reliable because              
of legislative budget cuts and because section 26.03.85(b) allows              
the Board to set its own compensation level for partial work days              
and such a cost is an unknown factor.  This leads to their second              
concern.  While the legislature finds it is important for the DEC              
to conduct adequate research prior to proposing and implementing               
water quality regulations and the Department has often had to act              
without specific data about the State's water, this proposed                   
legislation rather than providing additional funding to address                
these concerns, places an additional burden or duty on Department              
officials by requiring them to seek funds to perform research.                 
Surely this added duty can only detract from research we all agree             
is necessary.  She wonders when DEC will come to them to ask for               
money since they are involved in water sports, although she doubts             
that would happen.  It appears that "interested parties" does not              
actually include all parties interested in water quality.                      
Her third concern is the increased bureaucracy it creates.  She                
agrees that citizen oversight and involvement in government is                 
important, but they think that such oversight and involvement                  
already exists through the pubic review and comment process.  The              
public would be better served by hiring more scientists to work for            
the Department in allocating adequate funds for them to perform the            
necessary research they all agree is necessary.                                
                                                                               
MS. CARLSON said also that the Governor is fully qualified for                 
appointing an oversight board comprised of individuals who satisfy             
the requirements in section 46.03.85(a).                                       
                                                                               
MS. PATTI SAUNDERS, Assistant Director, Alaska Conservation Voice,             
said they agree with the intent of this bill that the policy of the            
State is to protect the quality and uses of the State's water.                 
They also support the concept of promulgating regulations based on             
good research, however the solution proposed in HB 128 is ill-                 
advised and is not likely to further the goal of protecting                    
Alaska's water quality and public health.  If the problem is that              
DEC doesn't have sufficient staff to get enough research to                    
promulgate toxicity standards, the easiest and best solution is to             
give DEC the funds necessary to do the work. Creation of an                    
oversight board is problematic because empowering the legislature              
to appoint board members inappropriately and unnecessarily                     
politicizes the development of toxicity standards in direct                    
contravention of the purported purpose of the bill.  The                       
qualifications required for board members all but guarantees that              
qualified people with a public interest perspective will be                    
excluded from the board, while individuals who may be technically              
qualified, but are none-the-less employed by industry as staff and             
consultants, would undoubtedly fill most of the seats.  The Board              
research plan is limited to how much toxicity ought to be allowed              
in State waters and further is limited to toxic effects on aquatic             
life.  The bill does not provide for toxicity standards based on               
public health considerations, nor does it provide any mechanisms               
for dealing with accumulations of toxic material already present in            
our environment from past industrial practices.  The notion of                 
using private (industry) money to fund this project goes against               
every principal of good government.  If good research is so                    
important to protecting good Alaskan water quality and the public              
interest, we ought to be willing to pay for it using public funds.             
It would preserve the appearance and reality of unbiased objective             
science.  This bill will ensure that only the parts that industry              
is willing to pay for will move forward.                                       
                                                                               
She concluded that they should adequately fund DEC to do the                   
research that would help protect the public and the environment.               
                                                                               
Number 450                                                                     
                                                                               
SENATOR LEMAN noted that Ms. Carlson was concerned about the                   
political issues with the legislature in appointing board members,             
but wasn't concerned about the same thing with the Governor.  The              
legislature is meant to represent the people and is to just suggest            
two lists of three names each.                                                 
                                                                               
SENATOR TAYLOR said he appreciated the vote of confidence, since he            
was intending to change the Governor in the next election.                     
                                                                               
MS. CARLSON responded that her concern is that this procedure is               
substantially different from the normal procedure for the                      
appointment of boards and she didn't think it was appropriate nor              
was there any justification for changing the appointment process.              
It also clearly puts control in the hands of the legislature.                  
                                                                               
SENATOR LEMAN asked if this board would require legislative                    
confirmation.                                                                  
                                                                               
CHAIRMAN HALFORD answered that it didn't, because it's not                     
regulatory; it's quasi-judicial.                                               
                                                                               
SENATOR GREEN added that there were other lists of board members               
submitted by the University of Alaska, the Governor, and the                   
Commissioner or the Commissioner's designee.                                   
                                                                               
MS. CARLSON responded that her concern is with the process and the             
extent to which this differs from the normal process for appointing            
boards and then confirmation.                                                  
                                                                               
CHAIRMAN HALFORD asked if this is a five-year board.                           
                                                                               
REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON replied yes.                                             
                                                                               
CHAIRMAN HALFORD said he was concerned  if it's not their intent to            
have a sunset review and this is a temporary board, that should be             
clarified.                                                                     
                                                                               
REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON said the intent is to have a temporary board.            
They want to get in, establish the science, establish the                      
regulations, then be done with it.                                             
                                                                               
CHAIRMAN HALFORD asked if he would object to a sunset date that                
would direct a repeal after five years.  He said they are already              
going to change the date anyway.  He said it would have to be after            
the Department submits its research.                                           
                                                                               
REPRESENTATIVE HUDSON said he would accept an actual sunset at the             
end of five full years of research.                                            
                                                                               
Number 529                                                                     
                                                                               
CHAIRMAN HALFORD said they would hold the bill for further work                
before passing it.                                                             
                                                                               
          HJR 49 - NAT'L FOREST ROAD-BUILDING MORATORIUM                       
                                                                               
CHAIRMAN HALFORD announced HJR 49 to be up for consideration.                  
                                                                               
MR. PETER ECKLUND, Staff to Representative Williams, sponsor of HJR
49, read the sponsor statement.  The Forest Service recently                   
announced a sweeping two-year moratorium on development of roadless            
areas in national forests.  Although the announced land freeze                 
appears to have exempted the Tongass National Forest from the                  
policy, that is not necessarily the case.  The public has 30 days              
to comment on this after which the Tongass could be included in the            
moratorium.  Also, the Chief of the Forest Service, Mr. Mike                   
Dombeck, has said that the final long-term policy will apply to all            
forests.                                                                       
                                                                               
The resolution speaks to the inappropriate manner in which the                 
White House is dictating management of our national forests.  The              
Forest Service has turned the public process upside down by                    
announcing their policy first, then searching for scientific                   
evidence to support their position and reaching out for public                 
participation.                                                                 
                                                                               
The resolution also speaks to the Tongass Land Management Plan                 
revised over 10 years and costing $13 million.  It would be wrong              
to come back later with a unilateral amendment which alters the                
balance struck in the plan.                                                    
                                                                               
CHAIRMAN HALFORD said that Mr. Lyle Lundberg of Ketchikan and Mr.              
Mark Stahl of Anchorage were ready to testify and asked if anyone              
wanted to testify against this resolution.  There was no response.             
He asked if anyone needed to testify on it before it passed from               
this committee.  There was no response.  He said he would accept a             
motion to move it with the concurrence of Mr. Lundberg, Mr. Stahl,             
and Mr. Jack Phelps.                                                           
                                                                               
MR. MARK STAHL, Manager, Lands and Resources, Chugach Alaska                   
Corporation, suggested adding a whereas statement dealing with the             
Chugach National Forest saying, "Whereas the Chugach National                  
Forest land management land plan revision was initiated in April of            
1997, and this plan revision process is the appropriate venue for              
addressing road building and roadless area management issues in the            
Chugach National Forest."  He suggested putting it between the                 
fourth and fifth whereas statements.                                           
                                                                               
CHAIRMAN HALFORD said he thought it would go better after the third            
whereas.                                                                       
                                                                               
TAPE 98-11, SIDE B                                                             
                                                                               
SENATOR LEMAN moved to amendment HJR 49 to add "Whereas Chugach                
National Forest land management plan revision was initiated in                 
April 1997 and this plan revision process is the appropriate venue             
for changes to the Chugach Land Management Plan (or words to that              
effect)."  There were no objections and it was so ordered.                     
                                                                               
MR. JACK PHELPS, Executive Director, Alaska Forest Association,                
said it was important to recognize that this moratorium will have              
a disproportionate effect on Alaska relative to the rest of the                
country.  He said the process is lousy and a compromise of every               
major law that affects national forest management.  The effects of             
this on Alaska in terms of the allowable cut for timber on our                 
national forests is more than double that of any other national                
forest region in the country.                                                  
                                                                               
SENATOR LEMAN moved to pass SCS CSSSHJR 49(RES) from committee with            
individual recommendations.  There were no objections and it was so            
ordered.                                                                       
                                                                               
        SB 204 - STATE LAND FOR MUNICIP. SPORT FACILITIES                      
                                                                               
CHAIRMAN HALFORD announced SB 204 to be up for consideration and               
asked for an at-ease for two minutes.                                          
                                                                               
MS. MEL KROGSENG, Staff to Senator Taylor, sponsor, said our youth             
are too often left unattended after school, at night, and on                   
weekends with little to do.  Recreational and sports facilities in             
communities offer an alternative to crime and other undesirable                
activities.  SB 204 proposes to give State land to municipalities              
for development of sports and recreational facilities.  This land              
that is granted will not count against the local government                    
entitlement and make development of these facilities more                      
economically feasible for the communities.  The bill contains a                
reversionary provision which prohibits local governments from                  
selling the land.  If they should decide not to use it for that                
purpose, it would revert back to the State, but they may trade the             
land for other land that might be more suitable in their area than             
the available State land.                                                      
                                                                               
CHAIRMAN HALFORD asked if Senator Taylor minded taking out the                 
reversionary clause because it gets complicated when you are trying            
to exchange land.                                                              
                                                                               
SENATOR TAYLOR answered not at all.  He added that the Department              
wanted the clause.  He thought the land should just be fee simple.             
                                                                               
Number 526                                                                     
                                                                               
SENATOR SHARP asked if this meant that the Fairbanks North Star                
Borough could apply for the route of the Yukon Quest if the                    
Department of Natural Resources would grant that and not be counted            
against their land selection.                                                  
                                                                               
SENATOR TAYLOR said he wouldn't mind.  He didn't intend for there              
to be limitations.  There are a lot of activities out there.  His              
community is putting in an archery range.                                      
                                                                               
SENATOR GREEN said it looks like this creates unfair competition to            
some individual who might want to create a for-profit facility such            
as a hockey rink or tennis facility.                                           
                                                                               
SENATOR TAYLOR answered that wasn't the intent.  Most individuals              
do not put up soccer or little league fields.                                  
                                                                               
SENATOR GREEN responded they would if they were given free land.               
                                                                               
SENATOR TAYLOR said it is set up so that those individuals who have            
land that the municipality could better use for that purpose could             
receive land in exchange.                                                      
                                                                               
Number 495                                                                     
                                                                               
SENATOR LINCOLN asked if there was any size limitation to the land.            
                                                                               
SENATOR TAYLOR said the discretion is left up to the Commissioner              
of the DNR, but there is no limitation.                                        
                                                                               
SENATOR LINCOLN asked him to define municipality under this                    
scenario.                                                                      
                                                                               
SENATOR TAYLOR replied that there would be home rule and second                
class.                                                                         
                                                                               
SENATOR LINCOLN asked if all other unorganized boroughs would be               
eligible for the same land.                                                    
                                                                               
MS. KROGSENG answered that it is her understanding that all                    
political subdivisions fall under the classification of                        
municipality (according the George Utermohle, Legislative Legal                
Services).                                                                     
                                                                               
SENATOR LINCOLN asked what a political subdivision meant.                      
                                                                               
MS. KROGSENG answered that she thought it meant you're incorporated            
as an entity.                                                                  
                                                                               
CHAIRMAN HALFORD added that a city and borough does not include                
unincorporated communities.                                                    
                                                                               
SENATOR LINCOLN asked if there was a definition of what development            
means.  Is it planning or does there have to be a structure?                   
                                                                               
SENATOR TAYLOR answered that he planned on having it done by that              
time.  He didn't want cities applying for ball fields and then                 
never building them just so they could get additional land.                    
                                                                               
CHAIRMAN HALFORD clarified that taking out the reversionary                    
requirement doesn't mean the Commissioner can't enter into a                   
contractual obligation that gets performance within that four year             
period.                                                                        
                                                                               
MS. CAROL CAROLL, Director, Administrative Services, DNR, said they            
have looked at the bill and there are a couple of differences with             
the authority they already have to transfer lands or make grants to            
municipalities or entities.  Those two differences are the reverter            
clause which they prefer not to be there and the other is that it              
won't be applied to the municipal entitlement portion.  The grants             
that they make now for public purposes count against the entity's              
municipal entitlement.  She said that when DNR does this kind of               
transfer, it is always for a public purpose and there was a                    
question that the land in this bill might be used for a private                
facility.  Other than those differences, this does duplicate the               
authority DNR already has.                                                     
                                                                               
CHAIRMAN HALFORD asked if this was intended for private ownership.             
                                                                               
SENATOR TAYLOR answered no, he had never thought of it.                        
                                                                               
SENATOR LEMAN said he wasn't so sure they should restrict this from            
being a privately constructed facility even though it was on public            
land.  He thought they would want a municipality to have that                  
option.                                                                        
                                                                               
CHAIRMAN HALFORD said he didn't want to create something that was              
in direct competition with a private entity, but he also agreed                
with the other view that there are private management contracts                
running public facilities.  He wasn't sure he wanted to create a               
preferential way to create a privately owned facility, even if it's            
open to the public.                                                            
                                                                               
SENATOR LEMAN said he understood, but there are times when you may             
have to pony up the land to make the economics work.                           
                                                                               
CHAIRMAN HALFORD asked if they would contribute the land to a                  
private profit-making developer.                                               
                                                                               
SENATOR GREEN said she thought Ms. Caroll said there was a                     
prohibition against it going to a for-profit entity.                           
                                                                               
MS. CAROLL responded that she was comparing what DNR's authorities             
are right now to the bill as Senator Taylor had it.  Usually DNR,              
when they grant land, requires it to be for a public purpose and               
for the most part it is in public ownership.  There are leases that            
private entities do have on State and municipal land.                          
                                                                               
SENATOR GREEN asked about the Sullivan Arena.                                  
                                                                               
CHAIRMAN HALFORD said it is publicly owned and financed, but there             
are management contracts.                                                      
                                                                               
SENATOR GREEN asked if there would be a prohibition against                    
management contracts.                                                          
                                                                               
MS. CAROLL said she would check on that.                                       
                                                                               
SENATOR LEMAN asked if there is a prohibition against any entities             
being owned by private enterprise.                                             
                                                                               
MS. CAROLL said she didn't think there was, but she would check on             
that also.                                                                     
                                                                               
Number 363                                                                     
                                                                               
SENATOR TAYLOR moved on line 10 to delete the reversionary                     
statement.  There were no objections and it was so ordered.                    
                                                                               
There was general discussion of lands for public purposes versus               
private and SENATOR TAYLOR said that many cities are already fully             
entitled and other cities are afraid if they take land under                   
current law for recreational purposes, they are restricting the                
amount of land they may need for another commercial or industrial              
purpose.                                                                       
                                                                               
Number 291                                                                     
                                                                               
SENATOR LEMAN moved on page 1, line 7 to delete "by the                        
municipality" and insert "for public purposes."  Also in that same             
amendment on page 2, line 1 delete "by the municipality."  There               
were no objections and it was so adopted.                                      
                                                                               
SENATOR SHARP asked Ms. Caroll if she felt they were still                     
operating within the present parameters the Department wishes as               
far as maintaining public ownership.                                           
                                                                               
MS. CAROLL said it would still be their wish that it be out of the             
municipality's land.                                                           
                                                                               
SENATOR TAYLOR moved to pass CSSB 204(RES)from committee with                  
individual recommendations.  There were no objections and it was so            
ordered.                                                                       
                                                                               
            SB 213 - EXTEND ALASKA MINERALS COMMISSION                         
                                                                               
CHAIRMAN HALFORD announced SB 213 to be up for consideration.                  
                                                                               
SENATOR DUNCAN, sponsor, said SB 213 extends the termination date              
of the Alaska Minerals Commission from January 1999 to February 1,             
2004.                                                                          
                                                                               
CHAIRMAN HALFORD said there is a $0 fiscal note which he didn't                
think was right on a sunset bill, because the Commission could not             
go forward without passage of legislation.  The Administration                 
included it in their budget, because they assume it's going                    
forward.  This one is odd, because it would sunset in the middle of            
a fiscal year.  He said there really is a fiscal impact to                     
extending a commission.                                                        
                                                                               
SENATOR DUNCAN said his point was well taken.                                  
                                                                               
SENATOR TAYLOR moved SB 213 from committee with individual                     
recommendations.  There were no objections and it was so ordered.              
                                                                               
CHAIRMAN HALFORD adjourned the meeting at 5:00 p.m.                            

Document Name Date/Time Subjects