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LEGISLATIVE NEWS:
SPECIAL SESSION JUNE 7, 2001 AND REDISTRICTING

Senator Randy Phillips
Eagle River, Ak
JULY 15, 2001

The legislature convened in Juneau on June 7 for a special session called by Governor Knowles to consider cruise ship discharge legislation. During the three day session, the legislature held hearings and on June 9 passed a conference committee substitute for House Bill 260, an Act relating to marine passenger vessels, by a vote of 13 - 6. I voted yes, however I believe this special session was not necessary.

Last year at Senator Murkowski's urging, Congress passed a bill that addressed environmental concerns surrounding cruise ships. This legislation prohibited the dumping of untreated sewage in Alaska's waters and set minimum standards for the discharge of gray water. The cruise chip industry had agreed to voluntarily comply with those standards, thus eliminating any pressing need to pass legislation this summer on a state level.

House Bill 260 extends the laws to smaller cruise ships and some of the state's ferries. It provides a system for the state to set effluent limits for discharged sewage and gray water, and to perform testing of waste water and receive results of both state and federal testing. The full text of House Bill 260 is available on the legislature's Bill Action Status and Inquiry System (BASIS), at www.legis.state.ak.us.

Every ten years our state Constitution requires the Alaska Redistricting Board to redraw boundary lines for legislative districts. This reapportionment follows the decennial census, which was conducted last year and completed March 19, 2001. The Redistricting Board convened in August 2000 and held hearings throughout the state. The constitution requires a draft report to be completed within 30 days of the census, and a final plan to be submitted within 90 days. The Board voted 3 - 2 in favor of the draft plan, and issued their Proclamation on June 18. Senate District L, which I now represent, will become Senate District I. This new district will include a portion of Eagle River, and Eagle River Valley and Hiland Road/South Fork areas. Both Elmendorf and Fort Richardson will be in the new Senate District, as well as a small portion of Muldoon and Government Hill. The new districts will become effective in January 2002, after the November '02 election. The Board's proclamation and maps and physical descriptions of the districts are available on the Board's web site:

http://www.alaskaredistricting.org


If you have questions or comments regarding any legislation or issues, you can contact me via e-mail at Senator_Randy_Phillips@legis.state.ak.us, or at my address: P.O. Box 142, Eagle River, Alaska 99577, telephone 694-4949

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