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Daily Sitka Sentinel Newspaper Archives Apr 10 1990, Page 1

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Sitka Daily Sentinel (Newspaper) - April 10, 1990, Sitka, Alaska Member of the associated press the first hearing held on ethics Law proposal Juneau apr the proposed overhaul of alaskans legislative ethics Law is on the fast track in the House and Senate after receiving its first hearing monday. The first hearing was before the House state affairs committee whose chairman rep. Red Boucher promised to Clear the committees Agenda and vote on the Bill thursday. A this is our major objective a said Boucher a Anchorage. The Senate plans to move even faster. Sen. Jan Faiks a Anchorage and chairwoman of the Senate judiciary committee said she would hold her first hearing and move the Bill out of the committee tuesday. Senate president Tim Kelly a Anchorage said it is not very important which chamber acts first because the Bills will be different and sent to a conference committee of House and Senate negotiators. A we All know it does no to have to be perfect coming out of either Side a Kelly said. A Speed is important Only to get it to in both Chambers the Bill next goes to the finance committees where chairmen have not said what their plans Are. The House and Senate Are dealing with different versions of the Bill proposed by Michael Josephson a California ethics expert hired for $70,000 by the Senate. Josephson released his proposal last week. The Bill would make sweeping changes to the Way lawmakers do business raise Campaign funds and get paid. It would also create a powerful and Independent commission to enforce the new ethics Law. Boucher a version of the Bill is Josephson so work minus lengthy commentary that the consultant used to explain the intent of the Law. It does not include the full package of pay raise and salary reforms proposed by Josephson. Talks Bill includes All the pay proposals and also sets dates for when various portions of the Bill would go into effect. Josephson said the entire package should go into effect june i so this Campaign season would be covered by the new Date set yet on closure of Black cod fishing by Sentinel staff the National Marine fisheries service Emfs is holding off setting a closure Date for the Southeast Sable fish Black cod fishery because of High winds experienced last week and expected again later this week a spokeswoman said today. Fms managers expect to announce a closure or provide an update on catch rates by Friday Jesse gear Reu a resource management specialist with Emfs in Juneau said today. Gharrett said 2,399 metric tons or 42 percent of the 5,980 ton quota had been reported delivered to processors by april 8, but High winds forecast for this week arc expected to keep boats in port and slow the landings As happened last week. She said Emfs will announce a closure Date Over the vhf weather Channel. Updates will be Given to processors when Emfs officials Check in for the latest landings Friday she said. According to state observers fishing in Northern Southeast has been average so far above average in Southern Southeast she said. The Black cod season opened april do by Sentinel tuesday april to 1990 volume 52 no. 70 Sitka Alaska 35c the definition of apathy is a Lack of interest or concern. This definition could be applied to Many of us. Sitka is our Tome a place where we live work and play. Crimes of any Type affect All of us sometimes on a personal level to either ourselves or friends. Do you have any information regarding a crime Only you can Slop apathy. Crime line offers a Reward of up to $1,000 for information leading to die arrest and indictment of the person s responsible for a crime. Call crime line at 747-8980. You do not have to give your name. Crime line will pay Tor information on any felony crimes. Revenue forecasts give budget boost by Brian s. Akre associated press writer Juneau apr higher Oil prices Are swelling the state Treasury and the Revenue Outlook appears fairly stable through the mid-1990s, according to a state forecast released monday. The Revenue departments annual Spring forecast was the kind of Good news lawmakers and gov. Steve Cowper wanted to hear in the final month of the legislative session while they Complete work on next years budget. Tile departments biannual forecasts Are educated guesses used by the legislature and administration to prepare the budget the latest forecast predicts significantly More Money will flow into the Treasury this year and next than did last Falls forecast. Revenue commissioner Hugh Malone said the past years Rise in Oil prices and the 1989 Legislatures revision of the economic limit Factor tax formula were the reasons for the Revenue increase. The latest mid Range forecast predicts the state will bring in nearly $2.5 billion this fiscal year up from the $2.3 billion in the fall forecast the estimate for fiscal 1991, which begins july i is $2.42 billion. That a $170 million More than predicted last fall. The forecast for fiscal 1990 is based on an average West coast Price for North slope crude of $17.37 a barrel. The Revenue forecast for fiscal 1991 is based on $19.15 a barrel. About 85 percent of state revenues come from Oil taxes and royalties and each $1 Rise in the per barrel Price of Oil brings the state another $150 million in Revenue. Malone said recent drops in Oil prices were Normal seasonal declines. A we believe Oil prices will be More stable and probably increase a Malone said in an interview. A a that a because it looks like the Oil glut is Over. Open is not continuing to increase its production and the demand is Malone said the Outlook would be even better if not for the decline of alaskans huge Prudhoe Bay Field and the a extreme costs in connection with corrosion repairs on the trans Alaska Oil pipeline. The repairs Are expected to Cost $1 billion Over the next five years Malone said. Money for the repairs comes from tariffs charged to Oil producers using the 800-mile pipeline. The tariffs reduce the value of North slope Oil which Means lower taxes and royalties to the state. A a that takes a big bite out of the old revenues a a total of $250 million Malone said. Sen. Johne Binkley a Bethel and co chairman of the Senate finance committee said legislators were expecting the Spring forecast to be higher. A it sounds Good a he said. A i just Hope that the legislature does no to get wild As they did last year and go off on a spending spree now that there a optimism in the Revenue if the mid Range forecast is Correct the state should have a $250 million surplus at the end of this fiscal year june 30. If the legislature decides to spend As much As Cowper has proposed for next year the state will have a $220 million surplus in july 1991, Binkley said. Malone a forecast while providing More optimism repeats his Strong warnings about the Long term Outlook. A things look Good in the near term but we need to be debating and deciding what to do for the next to years a he said in the forecasts introductory letter to Cowper. A we need to confront the fact that alaskans Oil production in a dozen years will be one fourth the present level. Unless production increases continued on Page 8 gop led Senate make cultures classes students in a native weaving class Are joined by students from Santa be Indian school this morning at Sitka National historical Parks Indian cultural Center. The weaving students Are producing a Raven Tail Robe under the direction of Cheryl Samuel an expert in the Early native style or Northwest coast Geometric weaving. Ellen Hays Center director said the weavers Hope to add their Robe to the a Crossroads of continents exhibit in Anchorage in 1991. The 14 Santa be students Are visiting it. Edgecumbe High school a Edgecumbe students visited the Santa be school earlier this year. Starting with the plane trip to Sitka the Santa be teen agers have enjoyed several new experiences including boat rides a visit to Rockwell Lighthouse and instruction on survival suits. They arrived last weekend and leave thursday. Sentinel photo by James Pou Ison list of capital project governor hopefuls questioned by will Swagel Sentinel staff writer four Republican and one democratic contender for the governorship of Alaska discussed their views Here saturday night at an Alaska league of women voters forum. The candidate forum was part of the leagues annual statewide convention. Taking part were republicans James Campbell Rick Halford John Lindauer and Arliss Sturc Liwski and Democrat Tony Knowles. The other democratic candidate la. Gov. Steve Mcalpinc was out of the state at a lieutenant governors convention. The candidates made opening and closing statements and fielded questions from the audience of about 70. They agreed that the impending reduction in Oil Revenue would make restructuring state government necessary that Campaign financing should have limits and that gov. Steve Cowpens education endowment was flawed. They also agreed in their opposition to finfish mariculture in Alaska. But the five candidates disagreed on such issues As abortion the need for More prisons and support for the 50-Ycar Timber contracts in Southeast Alaska. On the Limber Issue Sturgeleski said she appreciated the process used by the Southeast conference in calling together different groups and called their Compromise a a reasonable the Southeast conference called for continuation of the contracts but with renegotiated terms. Campbell and Lindauer said they would leave the contracts As is. A a deals a Deal a they both stated. Halford also said the contracts should not be changed. A what businesses want from government is a firm contract they can take to the Bank a said Campbell. Knowles said the present contracts Send the wrong message to government and Hurt the Industry by artificially sustaining it instead of allowing development based on Market forces. On abortion Halford said he would do everything constitutionally acceptable to reduce the number of abortions being performed. Lindauer said he a did no to appreciate abortions and wanted them outlawed for sex selection. Campbell said it was every woman a right that the final do Sion should be hers. Knowles said he was pro Choice. A a in a pro children pro family and pro Choice a said Sturc Liwski. Campbell said he wanted to get tougher on crime re Institute the death Penally and build More prisons. Lindauer said the state should build More prisons if needed but should not a a clutter them up a with the poor victims of drug and alcohol abuse. Rather he said the state should concentrate efforts on catching the Deal continued on Page 8 by Larry Persily associated press writer Juneau apr the Republican led Senate majority went looking for a political Compromise and brought Home a $454 million shopping list for Public works projects but not everyone is Happy with the purchases or the Price. The list includes Large Power lines a Coal fired Power Plant University buildings Railroad cars schools and More to be divvied up on a per senator allocation. A a there a kind of a feeding frenzy going on a House majority Leader Mike Navarre said monday. Sen. Pal Pourchot a Anchorage opposed the plan. He said More new buildings today Means More operating expenses tomorrow and legislators already arc criticized for spending too much on government services. Rep. Kay Brownd Anchorage agreed. A a lot of us think we should exercise restraint and not let things get out of control a she said. But control to one legislator is a shortage to another. Navarre a Kenai said the Senate plan Falls Short in state Aid for school construction debt. Sen. Paul Fischer a Soldotna said he voted against the plan because it lacked enough Money for schools and because it failed to provide any Money for an elderly housing project in his District. The final month of the session Usu House oks Bill on Salmon farms ban by Larry Persily associated press writer Juneau Alaska apr legislation that would permanently ban Salmon farming in Alaska cleared the House monday but the Bill a supporters Are not off the Hook yet. The measure must pass through the Senate resources committee where the chairwoman is wailing with a Compromise proposal. Opponents of Salmon farming have Strong support in the legislature. The ban passed the House 30-5, and a similar measure is co sponsored by three quarters of the Senate. But supporters of fish farms have on their Side sen. Bettye Fahrenkamp a Fairbanks. As chairwoman of the Senate resources committee Fahrenkamp will have a lot to say on the Issue. The Senate a proposed ban on fish farms has been stuck in Fahrenkampf a committee for three months and the House Bill is expected to land there Tex. A two year ban on fish farming in Alaska will expire july i unless lawmakers do something to extend it. Fahrenkamp has said it would be a a asinine to impose a permanent ban on fish farming. Salmon farm opponents argue that pen reared fish could spread disease among wild stocks and would compete against alaskans commercial fishing Industry. Quot lets close the door now a rep. Bill Hudson a Juneau said during House debate on the Issue. Supporters of fish fanning say Europe Canada and Pacific Northwest states already Are in the business and it would be foolish for Alaska not to join the Industry. Fahrenkamp said a possible Compromise might include a ban on Saltwater fish farms while allowing Upland fish pens that do not Drain into Salt water and cannot spread disease to natural Salmon runs. Ibe Industry could raise Steelhead cod and Char in addition to Salmon she said. Rodger Painter director of the Alaska mariculture association said another possible Compromise might be a ban on pen reared Salmon in return for permission to raise halibut Black cod and other species. Painter said the House Victory had been expected. The Battle will be in the Senate Between Fahrenkamp and sen. Dick Eliason a Sitka and Leader of the anti fish farming Campaign. Eliason said he a in no mood for Compromise and does no to believe there a any need to negotiate. A a there a no question in my mind that a majority of the legislators want a ban on All types of fish farming Quot he said. Legislators two years ago allowed shellfish and aquatic Plant farms and that Sas far As Eliason said lie wants to go. Although there a no state Law against Selling pen reared fish in Alaska Eliason has an answer for that uni. His Senate Bill 531 would require Labelling of pen reared fish products sold in the slate. The Bill is scheduled for a hearing wednesday in the Senate finance committee. A legislative task Force on fish farming said in december that the temporary ban on the Industry should not be extended and recommended that lawmakers make a decision this year. Although the House passed Bill would impose a permanent ban on fish farms rep. Chert Davis a Ketchikan had some advice for her colleagues monday a there is no such thing As forever when it comes to ii it Alaska ally involves negotiating a package of state funded Public works projects with enough Money for each District to win legislative passage. Lawmakers face a May 8 adjournment deadline and the Senate majority met saturday to approve their draft plan for construction spending in fiscal 1991. Senators met behind closed doors for about two hours before opening the meeting to Vole on the package which includes spending All $230 million of the rail Cut Energy fund. It also includes $200 million from the state general fund for Public works projects proposed by communities and state agencies and $24 million for school construction. The Senate majority coalition approved the plan 12-3. Joining Fischer and Pourchot against the proposal was sen. Mike Szymanski a Anchorage. Approval by the full Senate would be required before the plan could move to the House. Sen. Johne Binkley a Bethel and co chairman of the finance committee walked out of saturdays caucus before the vote. He said monday he was disappointed with the size of the package and docs not expect it to win House approval. The legislature faces a $2.57 billion spending limit and excessive Public works spending could drive the budget Over the line Binkley said. Senate president Tim Kelly a Anchorage said the spending limit is not in danger of falling. Spending the $230 million rail Cut Energy fund does not count against the limit because it is a reallocation of an old appropriation he said. Brown said the Public May not accept that reasoning. The 4-year-old account was set up to pay for Large scale Power projects in die rail Cut area Between the Kenai Peninsula and Fairbanks. Gov. Steve Cowper has proposed spending about half of the fund. House members probably will want to spend All of it but not on the same projects the Senate favors Navarre said. A we have been trying for years to reach a consensus on the rail Cut Energy fund Quot Kelly said. A the inter ties Are not sexy they re not glamorous a but they re needed to provide reliable Power in the Region he said. Senators want to spend $100 million on Power lines Between the Kenai Peninsula and Anchorage and from Healy to Fairbanks. The Money for electrical inter ties running from the Kenai Peninsula to Fairbanks would subsidize consumer continued on Page 8

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