Governor Sean Parnell today transmitted legislation to reform and streamline procedures for obtaining, issuing and appealing permits, leases and other authorizations issued by the Department of Natural Resources (DNR).
"Alaska is open for business and Alaskan job creation," Governor Parnell said. "This legislation encourages responsible development of our land and water resources so Alaskans can have greater economic opportunity while protecting our environment. An efficient permitting process is a significant factor in making business viable in Alaska and creating jobs for our families."
Governor Parnell's bill would help streamline processes for certain leases by authorizing the issuance of general permits, allowing for extensions of leases during consideration of applications for renewals, and allowing online public bidding procedures.
The legislation also reforms the current land exchange statutes to simplify the procedures. This time-saving measure could reduce the processing time from years to months. Additionally, the governor's bill would modify the procedures for appeals of DNR decisions.
Last year, Governor Parnell introduced and signed HB 361, allowing DNR to simplify rules and condense the time it takes to process certain permits and authorizations. Since that time, the permitting backlog has decreased 34 percent.