By Dave Donaldson
Legislators yesterday got their first look at a bill that could lead to closing the state’s involvement in the state-licensed AGIA gas pipeline project from the North Slope to North American markets.
In response to the absence of status reports from the administration or licensee TransCanada on the results of last year’s Open Season offering of gasline transportation, House Speaker Mike Chenault is proposing that TransCanada be given until July 15th of this year to disclose firm agreements from shippers indicating an interest in continuing work on the project.If TransCanada cannot provide that information, the bill would begin the process of determining that AGIA is “uneconomical” – and closing it down.
In an email explanation to APRN, Anchorage Republican Mike Hawker, who co-sponsored the measure, said the reporting deadline was simply overlooked when the AGIA project was originally before the legislature.
He adds that the 2007 AGIA legislation has exit provisions – but there is no time reference. – quote – “ Our bill adds that deadline to create the sense of urgency, in making those decisions that the public wants.”
The bill was referred to the Finance Committee, however, it has not yet been scheduled for a hearing.
Sponsors will return to the capitol on Monday and have scheduled time to explain the measure in more detail then.