HB77 “In Deep Trouble” – ADN article

Anchorage Daily News, 12/11/13  BY RICHARD MAUER

HOMER — One major unresolved bill from the past legislative session, a sweeping law to eliminate public notice and comment when some permits are issued, ran into fierce opposition in meetings this week in the Kenai Peninsula district of Sen. Peter Micciche, prompting the Soldotna Republican to declare the measure in deep trouble.

House Bill 77, a product of Gov. Sean Parnell’s administration, teetered on the verge of Senate passage in the closing days of the 2013 session in April, but was stashed in the Senate Rules Committee when vote counters projected a 10-10 tie on the floor — a single vote shy. The bill had passed the House in March and is high on the Senate agenda when it reconvenes next month.

But Micciche, a moderate once considered a “yes” vote by opponents of the bill, said constituents have been flooding his office with comments and are even buttonholing him on the street. Nearly everyone is opposed, he said.

“I would be unlikely to support the bill in its current form,” he said Wednesday. The administration should withdraw the bill and re-write it, or Senate President Charlie Huggins should return it to a new round of committee hearings, Micciche said.