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Bad Bill of the Week: HB 111

“In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem, government IS the problem.” - President Ronald Reagan


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It was bound to make the list. Some figured it would have arrived sooner. Headlamp tired our best, but we couldn’t take it anymore. After the bill moved out of House Resources and underwent a week of hearings in the House Finance Committee, we had to make our Bad Bill of the Week HB 111. Resources Committee Co-Chairs Reps. Geran Tarr and Andy Josephson are championing this anti-business legislation.
 
There are many reasons why HB 111 is Headlamp’s Bad Bill of the Week, maybe even the session. Undoubtedly, it meets our general criteria of not solving our financial situation or strengthening the private sector. Nevertheless, it goes so much further. HB 111 fails to do anything to increase investment, jobs or production in Alaska. In fact, Headlamp believes the policies HB 111 seeks to implement could freeze projects in their tracks. We are talking about projects like Smith Bay, Nuna, Mooses Tooth-1, GMT-2, Willow, Mustang, Pikka and Horseshoe that could add an additional 517,000 barrels per day to TAPS! In the face of these game changing discoveries and projects, we have policy makers doing the unthinkable: pushing tax hikes once again on the industry. Testimony has shown Alaska is the ONLY oil regime moving in this policy direction.
 
But wait there’s more.
 
HB 111 proposes a new bureaucratic nightmare by requiring the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) to adopt regulations to pre-approve lease expenditures for all projects. Headlamp wrote extensively about this in an Extra Edition.

 

This particular provision highlights why HB 111 must be our Bad Bill of the Week. It all comes back to the underlying beliefs of the bill’s proponents, which are:

  • Government can do things better than the private sector

 

  • Taking money from the private sector and giving it to government will help the economy, and

 

  • Tax policy is developed to fill a budget gap
  •  
Headlamp looks forward to the Senate taking a commonsense and pro-business approach to this bill.
 
 
AK Headlamp
A Project of the Alaska Support Industry Alliance
3301 C Street
Anchorage, AK 99503
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