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Committee to hold controversial permitting bill, effectively allowing it to die this session

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JUNEAU, Alaska — The chairwoman of the Senate Resources Committee plans to hold a controversial permitting bill, effectively killing it this session.

Sen. Cathy Giessel, in a release, said what began as an effort to create efficiencies in Alaska's permitting process "morphed into a heated debate" and was "driving Alaskans apart."

HB77, from Gov. Sean Parnell, passed the House last year before stalling in the Senate.

Soldotna Sen. Peter Micciche asked that it be sent to Senate Resources for additional work after hearing from his constituents during the interim. But an attempt to rewrite provisions of the bill didn't allay concerns about the bill's impact on things like public participation in the permitting process.

A Parnell spokeswoman said the governor asked that the bill be held "because of widespread misinformation" over several sections.

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