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Murkowski Addresses Alaska Conveyance, Red Cedar, Surface Access Issues in Spending Bill

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senator Lisa Murkowski today announced the inclusion of a number of key provisions and priorities for Alaska in the fiscal year 2013 funding bill for the Department of the Interior.

Some of the important items for Alaska included in the Senate Interior bill are:

1.      Restoration of a $12 million cut to the Alaska Conveyance program, back to its current level of $29.1 million. This program is critical to finally giving the state, Native Corp., and private citizens final title to lands selected under the Alaska Statehood Act.

2.      Language on Alaska Red Cedar requiring timber sales in Alaska to be economic and for the U.S. Forest Service to use an appraisal system best suited to the unique needs of Alaska.

3.      Language guaranteeing reasonable access in National Forests in Alaska as required by the 1872 Mining Law.

While Friday night’s continuing resolution funds the government through March 2013 at present levels, the priorities established in this funding bill set the funding and policy direction for the remainder of the fiscal year.

Murkowski is the ranking Republican on the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee and the ranking member of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Interior and the Environment, which gives her authority over the Interior Department’s mission and their budget.

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