Mayors weigh in on statewide energy policy

Posted: Friday, November 20, 2009

ANCHORAGE - Mayors from various parts of Alaska testified at a meeting this week with the House Special Committee on Energy on how a statewide energy plan can help make energy more affordable, reliable and efficient in their communities.

Tuesday's hearing was part of the Alaska Municipal League's 2009 Annual Conference.

"It was a privilege to listen and learn from local leaders about energy policy," Energy Co-chair Charisse Millett, R-Anchorage said. "For any energy plan to work, it has to work at the local level and with the help of the chief executives we heard from we are on track for a successful energy policy next session."

"The energy needs in rural areas are unique not only to Alaska but to the entire country," Energy Co-chair Bryce Edgmon, D-Dillingham said. "Rural leaders are leading the way to solving the energy crisis in their own communities. With some carefully measured assistance from the legislature and the administration they can get a lot more done in the next few years on renewable energy and energy efficiency projects."

Committee members also received an update on the House Energy Stakeholders Group. The group of Alaskans from the natural resource development, business, conservation and renewable energy organizations are close to finalizing a state energy policy, which if passed next session, will be put into statute. The update was given by Bill Popp, President & CEO, Anchorage Economic Development Corporation and Chris Rose, Executive Director, Renewable Energy Alaska Project.

Energy Co-chairs Edgmon and Millett are also working on an omnibus energy bill for next session.

For more information, contact Rep. Millett at (907) 269-0222 or Rep. Edgmon at (907) 269-0275.

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