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Alaska Chamber This Week: January 18-25


Weekly Update
             January 18-25
In an effort to more effectively reach our members, the Weekly Update will now be sent on Wednesday mornings each week. During the legislative session, an additional update, ‘Capitol Notes’ will be sent on Fridays with committee meeting schedules and hearings that are of interest to our members.

In This Issue:
           Committee Meetings – 10 Day Outlook
       Point Thomson Comment Period Ends Today
       Alaska Senators Express Concern Over EPA Standards
       Senate Bipartisan Working Group Establishes Priorities
           Legislative Fly In Registration Open
       Chamber Hosts Position Briefings
       Priority Spotlight
       Upcoming Events
Committee Meetings
Events Committee: Thursday, January 19 at 9:00am.
Priority Briefing: Thursday, January 19 at 10:00am.
Open to all Alaska Chamber Members. Topic: Reduce the High Cost of Energy with Jim Dodson presenting
Workers Compensation Sub-Committee: Friday, January 20 at 9:00am.
Local Chamber Outreach Committee: Monday, January 23 at 2:00pm.
Finance Committee: Tuesday, January 24 at 1:30pm.
All meetings are held at 630 E 5th Ave, Ste 102, Anchorage and via teleconference (907-278-2700) unless otherwise noted.
NOTE: If you are a member of the committee, you will receive meeting documents when they are sent to the committee.  If you are not a member of a committee, but would like to participate or listen in, please let me know and the documents for the meeting will be forwarded to you. 
Point Thomson Comment Period Ends Today
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has released a draft environmental impact statement (DEIS) for ExxonMobil¹s Point Thomson natural gas condensate development project. Public hearings were held across Alaska in December and the comment period ends today, January 18.
Action requested:
Alaska Chamber encourages its members to participate in the process by submitting comments in support of Alternative B. Of the five design alternatives considered, Alternative B provides the safest, most
environmentally-responsible solution for developing Point Thomson¹s
resources in a timely, cost-effective manner.
For comment points and other details, please see the RDC Action Alert at:
Alaska Senators Express Concern Over EPA Standards
A bipartisan group of Senators, including Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) and Senator Mark Begich (D-AK) joined together last week to send a letter to Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Lisa Jackson expressing concern that EPA's Tier 3 standards will greatly increase the cost of gasoline and put jobs at risk at a time when Americans are struggling to make ends meet in a weak economy.
Senator Murkowski: "A high level of bipartisan concern has emerged over EPA's looming Tier 3 regulations.  Gas prices are already high, especially in Alaska, and our nation's economy continues to struggle. Despite this, EPA has chosen to proceed with a rulemaking that could lead to added financial burden on families and businesses.  I hope that Administrator Jackson will pay close and careful attention to the unintended negative impacts this rule could have, especially in combination with the rest of EPA's regulatory agenda."
Senator Begich: "Before asking Americans to pay even more at the pump, we need to be certain these new standards will truly be effective in reducing emissions and making the air we breathe cleaner."
Senate Bipartisan Working Group Establishes Priorities
Last week, Members of the Senate Bipartisan Working Group met to identify their priorities for this Session. The Senate Bipartisan Working Group is made up of a mix of Democrats and Republicans from all around Alaska who work together to accomplish the best solutions to give all Alaskans a brighter future.  Each one of the following priorities fits into the group’s overall vision for the state’s future and several of them align closely with Alaska Chamber priorities for the 2012 Session. They are:
-Increase Oil & Gas Production in Alaska and Extend the Life of the Trans-Alaska Pipeline
-Continue Current Savings Spree
-Invest in Education all the way from Pre-K through Post Secondary Education
-Accessible and Affordable Energy for All Alaskans
-Invest in Upgrading our Infrastructure
-Increasing Jobs for Alaskans
-Better Health for All Alaskans

The Alaska Chamber looks forward to working with members of the Senate Bipartisan Group and all members of the legislature to advance smart pro business legislation.
 Legislative Fly In Registration Ending Soon
The Legislative Fly-In will take place next week, January 25 and 26, in Juneau. Register Now! 

The annual Alaska Chamber Fly-In is designed to give members the chance to influence public policy effectively by meeting directly with state legislators and the administration. The Fly-In is your chance to seek support for the priorities and positions established at the Legislative Policy Forum and get to know your elected officials personally. Every member who attends the Fly-In can make a difference for Alaska’s business community.
A group rate is being offered at Alaska Airlines and the Westmark Baranof Hotel. Please reference the group code when making your reservations. 

Westmark Baranof Phone Number: 1-800-544-0970 (Group Code: AKST012512)

Alaska Airlines 7% Travel Discount Code: ECMJ25 (if booking online)
Alaska Airlines Reservation Number: 1-800-445-4435 (Refer to code MJ25 if booking over the phone)
Please visit www.alaskachamber.com for the agenda and sponsorship opportunities.
Alaska Chamber Hosts Position Briefings
As a courtesy to our members, Alaska State Chamber of Commerce has hosted briefingsregarding our priorities and positions leading up to our Legislative Fly-In. The purpose of these briefings has been to discuss our top three priorities in more detail giving our members a more robust knowledge base of adopted priorities. The final briefing is tomorrow.
January 19 at 10:00am – Reduce High Cost of Energy
All meetings are held at 630 E 5th Ave, Ste 102, Anchorage and via teleconference (907-278-2700) unless otherwise noted.
Priority Spotlight
Reduce the High Cost of Energy

The Alaska State Chamber of Commerce encourages the Alaska State Legislature and the Governor to support initiatives that lower the high cost of energy in Alaska. The high cost of energy is causing financial hardship in the rural and Interior regions of the state and limits economic growth statewide. The alleviate this situation, the Alaska Chamber supports initiatives that lower energy costs by developing energy resources.
Upcoming Events
Alaska Chamber Legislative Fly-In 2012
January 25-26, 2012 – Juneau, Alaska
Register Now.
Rural Outreach Trip
July 10-11, 2012 – Kodiak, Alaska
Annual Conference & Policy Forum
October 2-4. 2012 – Anchorage, Alaska
Save these dates, mark your calendar and watch for additional details.

Thank You To Our Lead Partners
ConocoPhillips Alaska
Capital Office Systems
Pioneer Natural Resources
Wells Fargo
Alaska Communications
Holland America Line
The Pebble Partnership
Alaska Railroad Corporation
Totem Ocean Trailer Express
Tower Hill Mines - Livengood Gold Project
TSS, Inc
Lead Underwrites receive recognition at each event, in printed programs, and on banners. Additional recognition is given in our enews, annual membership directory, and online at www.alaskachamber.com

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