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Governor Fights Bill to Consolidate Federal Mineral Leasing Programs

October 2, 2009, Anchorage, Alaska - Governor Sean Parnell expressed concern with federal legislation that would consolidate parts of various energy minerals management and leasing programs into another entity.

In a letter to House Natural Resources Committee Chairman Nick J. Rahall II, Governor Parnell said the legislation goes too far and will result in less domestic oil and gas production and fewer energy-related jobs in the U.S.

"This bill would create unnecessary delays and impediments in federal leasing programs," Governor Parnell said. "It is in the best interest of Alaska and the nation that oil and gas leasing not be adversely impacted by ill-conceived federal legislation."

The governor's letter to the chairman included a list of concerns the State of Alaska has with H.R. 3534, The Consolidated Land, Energy, and Aquatic Resources Act of 2009, including:
  • the creation of planning councils that will subordinate state influence and the development of complicated strategic plans that will serve to supersede both state and local control;
  • changes that will cause major inefficiencies among the agencies;
  • arbitrary benchmarks that will provide an unworkable one-size-fits-all approach to leases and that will increase unpredictability for potential lease bidders;
  • a revenue-sharing component that will not treat resource states fairly and that will distribute funds unequally; and
  • "production incentives" that will serve only to discourage future investment in our domestic resources.
A copy of Governor Parnell's letter to Chairman Rahall can be found at:
http://www.gov.state.ak.us/pdf/HR3534-Letter_Oct01-2009.pdf.

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