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Sitka legislator gets Energy Council position

Sen. Bert Stedman elected as vice chairman

Posted: October 5, 2011 - 12:05am

The Energy Council information exchange group met for the first time in Alaska last week, and elected State Sen. Bert Stedman, R-Sitka, as the international group’s vice-chairman.

The council is an information exchange group made up of some of North America’s top energy producing states and provinces, along with the South American nation of Venezuela.

It conducts quarterly meetings reviewing topics such as energy resources, markets, and technology, including oil outlook for North America, the Arctic’s energy future, shale gas and nuclear power.

“I’m honored to continue serving as part of the Energy Council’s leadership,” said Senator Stedman. “Legislators’ work at Energy Council is a key part of our efforts to develop Alaska’s energy resources.”

Stedman has served for the last five years on the council’s executive committee.

The Energy Council is the focus of public attention in Alaska each legislative session when most work at the Capitol stops so legislators can attend the council’s spring meeting in Washington, D.C.

At the D.C. meeting earlier this year, 27 of Alaska’s 60 legislators attended the Energy Council, including most top leaders and those focusing on resource issues.

At the Anchorage meeting last week, 25 Alaska legislators attended, said Senate Majority spokeswoman Carolyn Kuckertz. Another who had been scheduled to attend was unable to because of an emergency.

The Anchorage location also enabled a dozen legislative staff members to attend as well, Kuckertz. Few, if any, are able to attend the spring sessions.

Total attendance at the Anchorage session, held at the Hotel Captain Cook, was 250, the council said.

Council Executive Director Lori Cameron said Stedman’s role as the council’s vice-chair will enable the group make use of his energy and financial expertise.

”With Senator Stedman as part of the Council’s leadership, we look forward to benefitting even more from Alaska’s energy perspective, as well as his understanding of state finance,” Cameron said.

• Contact reporter Pat Forgey at 523-2250 or at patrick.forgey@juneauempire.com.

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