Alaska Legislative Digest

With the addition of amendment expanding the definition of cruise ship-monitoring “ocean rangers,” increasing the possible number of applicants. SB 183, sponsored by Sen. Bert Stedman (R-Sitka) gave the Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) authority to distribute grants from the $2 million in federal stimulus funding the state is expecting from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. Grants intended to reduce diesel emissions can be used to buy new public transportation vehicles or more efficient electrical generating equipment.

The House amendment, added by House Finance Cochairman Mike Hawker (R-Anch.) allows DEC to hire persons with degrees in marine safety or environmental protection as ocean rangers. Current law allows only U.S. Coast Guard certified marine engineers.

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