July 20, 2006
"This is exactly the type of project our 'Roads to Resources' funding was intended to bring to construction," Murkowski said. "This initial 5.7 mile phase of the road will access state timber that will allow local mills to keep running through the winter. In addition, we will see other timber sales made possible with this road."
The current construction, a $1.193 million contract with Ketchikan Ready-Mix, will be into timbered lands by October 15 and will be completed by December 15. The contractor is currently stripping overburden and will begin drilling soon. The project is being managed by Greg Staunton of the Division of Forestry in the Department of Natural Resources.
The 12 million board foot timber sale is being conducted under a state statute that requires the timber processor to add value to the timber, thereby supporting local jobs. The road will also provide access to another potential timber sale of 4 million board feet.
The governor's "Roads to Resources" initiative, managed through the Department of Transportation and Public Facilities, includes projects opening access to oil and gas lease sale areas on the North Slope, mining prospects in South Central Alaska, and coal mining areas in Western Alaska, among others. The objective of the initiative is to construct pioneer access roads that will promote the development of high value natural resources and underpin local economies.
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