Legislature(2003 - 2004)

2003-03-12 Senate Journal

Full Journal pdf

2003-03-12                     Senate Journal                      Page 0472
SB 142                                                                                            
SENATE BILL NO. 142 BY THE SENATE RULES COMMITTEE                                                   
BY REQUEST OF THE GOVERNOR, entitled:                                                               
          "An Act designating the Department of Natural                                             
          Resources as lead agency for resource development                                         
          projects; making conforming amendments; and                                               
          providing for an effective date."                                                         
was read the first time and referred to the Resources Committee.                                    
The following fiscal information was published today:                                               
 Fiscal Note No. 1, Department of Natural Resources                                                 
Governor's transmittal letter dated March 11:                                                       
Dear President Therriault:                                                                          
Under the authority of art. III, sec. 18, of the Alaska Constitution, I am                          
transmitting a bill designating the Department of Natural Resources                                 
(DNR) as the lead state agency in the permitting of resource                                        
development projects in this state.                                                                 
The purpose of this bill is to facilitate and expedite resource                                     
development in Alaska. In recent years, the laws governing resource                                 
development have proliferated, and there are now more agencies than                                 
ever with permitting authority over large projects. Resource                                        
development should not be held up by the sheer complexity of                                        
government. This bill is intended to alleviate that problem.                                        
This bill would authorize the DNR to lead and coordinate the                                        
permitting activities of all agencies with jurisdiction over the project                            
and would repeal existing statutes in AS 46.35 regarding permit                                     
coordination. The result of the DNR's efforts as lead agency will be                                
better communication, more efficient permitting, consolidated public                                
process, and stable funding for the state's permitting process.                                     

2003-03-12                     Senate Journal                      Page 0473
The repeal of the AS 46.35 provisions necessitates the relocation of                                
unrelated language, specific to Department of Environmental                                         
Conservation permit decisions, to more appropriate locations in AS                                  
46.03 and AS 46.04, as set out in secs. 2 and 3 of the bill.                                        
I urge your prompt and favorable action on this measure.                                            
Frank H. Murkowski