Senate Passes Bill Extending Coastal Zone Management Program

Dave Donaldson, APRN – Juneau

The Senate Friday passed and sent to the House its version of a bill extending – and making changes to – the state’s Coastal Management Program that helps coordinate state, federal and local requirements for development projects.

The bill on the floor had been changed from what the House sent to the Senate to reflect negotiations between coastal communities and the Parnell administration.

One of the major changes to the House bill would take away the governor’s right to remove – at will – members from the Coastal Policy Board.   They could only be removed for cause.  Golovin Democrat Donny Olson said it gives more power to local residents.

By a 17 to 20 vote, the House refused to accept the Senate version. The Senate refused to receded from its version and the bill has been assigned to a conference committee that is scheduled to meet tomorrow morning. A decision there will have to be reached quickly as it will be up against legislators’ desire to adjourn the special session.

The governor has said he will not support the Senate version of the bill.

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