Parnell says Begich proposal unnecessary

Posted: Wednesday, July 28, 2010

JUNEAU - Alaska's governor is opposing creation of a citizens' advisory council to weigh in on Arctic drilling proposals.

Gov. Sean Parnell says the proposal approved by a U.S. Senate committee Tuesday is unnecessary and would merely create another level of review and oversight to oil and gas development off Alaska's coast. Parnell says there's a "rigorous" existing regulatory framework in place, and his office chided U.S. Sen. Mark Begich, an Anchorage Democrat, for not consulting with Parnell or his staff before pushing the proposal.

A Begich spokeswoman didn't immediately return a message.

The provision, which Begich's office says cleared the Senate Commerce Committee, would allow for greater local participation on development decisions, environmental monitoring and oversight for spill planning and readiness.

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