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FAIRBANKS - A Senate committee approved a bill Thursday that would give the University of Alaska up to 500,000 acres of federal land.
Sen. Frank Murkowski, an Alaska Republican and candidate for governor, has been pushing the bill in the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee for seven years.
The land grant bill was one of almost 50 pieces of legislation the committee considered Thursday as it tried to get bills to the Senate floor before the approaching adjournment.
With other committees doing the same thing and a near gridlock between the closely divided Republican and Democratic camps, it's not certain whether the bill will make it to a floor vote.
"No, this bill is not absolutely greased for final passage," Murkowski spokesman Chuck Kleeschulte told the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner.