Members Comment on In-State Gas Caucus Meeting
Friday, March 15, 2013, Juneau, Alaska – Members of the Alaska Legislature’s Joint In-State Gas Caucus met on Thursday, March 14 to hear from the sponsors of the in-state gas pipeline bill, House Bill 4, and the state’s agency pursuing the project, the Alaska Gasline Development Corporation.
“HB 4 provides a critical framework for getting Alaska’s natural gas into the hands of Alaskans who need it as quickly as possible at the least possible cost,” Rep. Mike Hawker, R-Anchorage, co-sponsor of HB 4, said. “There is a lot of false and misleading information about HB 4 being advertised around the state, but I am confident that the Legislature will make its decision based on a carefully studied evaluation of the bill in an open and transparent deliberative process.”
“It was good to see a lot of members in attendance for such an important issue facing Alaskans,” House Speaker Mike Chenault, R-Nikiski, co-sponsor of HB 4, said. “There was good dialogue between the caucus and the Alaska Gasline Development Corporation. The enthusiasm and interest shown last night during the meeting proves that we’re on the right track with HB 4.”
“We had a strong turnout to hear presentations by Speaker Mike Chenault and Representative Mike Hawker on HB 4, and Dan Fauske and Frank Richards on progress being made on an in-state gas pipeline,” Rep. Mark Neuman, R-Su-Valley, Co-Chair of the In-State Gas Caucus, said. “Our goal as a caucus is to provide members with an opportunity to participate in discussions on bills that impact Alaskans, and today’s meeting was just another example.”
“Alaska Gasline Development Corporation’s plan gets Alaskans access to their gas faster than any other plan out there,” House Majority Leader Lance Pruitt, R-Anchorage, Co-Chair of the In-State Gas Caucus, said. “I’m encouraged to see so many legislators involved in finding long-term solutions to our energy needs.”
“This meeting was crucial in educating our newest members on what the Legislature has been doing to get natural gas to Alaskans,” Senate President Charlie Huggins, R-Wasilla, Co-Chair of the In-State Gas Caucus, said. “I was interested to hear about the in-state gasline proposal under House Bill 4 and the current progress being made by AGDC.”
“The Joint In-State Gas Caucus met to bring newly elected legislators who share our intense concerns about getting affordable gas to Alaskans up to speed on our progress so far,” Senator Lesil McGuire, R-South Anchorage, Co-Chair of the In-State Gas Caucus, said. “We formed the caucus three years ago to target a critical path forward. Now, after what we heard at this meeting, I am proud to say we are closer than ever before.”
The caucus will be meeting again in a couple of weeks to hear from the Department of Natural Resources.