on Gas Pipeline Project to Legislature
November 17, 2006
Photo by photo byWill Vandergriff/ Office of the Governor
"This document represents the future of Alaska," Murkowski said. "For the past 30 years, we have been the very fortunate recipients of a bonanza based on North Slope oil production. It has literally built our cities, schools, transportation networks, relieved us of taxes, and put money in everybody's bank account. But the oil runs out in a few short years if we do nothing. We must transition our oil-based economy to one based on gas production.
"The Interim Fiscal Interest Finding and the associated documents we are transmitting to the Legislature today will provide the basis for deliberations the Legislature, the producers, and Governor-elect Palin will need to enter into very soon. The responsibility for making the needed changes to the contract and the LLC now rests with the Legislature and the new governor. We have moved this project forward over the past two years. It is now up to the Legislature and the new governor to complete the process.
Murkowski reminded legislators that to delay could cost the state the entire project. "Delaying transition from oil to gas will create a huge revenue gap starting in just a few years," he said. "Delay will only add to costs, because of rising cost of commodities, steel, and labor. Delay will increase competition from other sources of energy. And delaying this project now could be a disaster for our economy if we get no pipeline at all.
"This package will empower the Legislature and new administration to complete the contract in the near term and secure Alaska's future."
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