Senate passes resolution calling for road construction

Posted: Thursday, March 06, 2003

FAIRBANKS (AP) -- The state Senate passed a resolution Wednesday supporting construction of a road linking Chena and Arctic Circle Hot Springs resorts.

The resolution picked up five other road proposals on its way through Senate committees.

The measure, sponsored by Sen. Gary Wilken, R-Fairbanks, passed by a vote of 17-1.

Wilken introduced the resolution to show support for a road linking the resorts in order to spur economic development and tourism. But he intended the measure to become a sort of wish list for legislators to pass on road proposals to Alaska's congressional delegation and to Gov. Frank Murkowski, who supports road expansion.

By the time the resolution made it to the Senate floor, five more proposals had been tacked on: a road up the Bradfield Canal near Wrangell; a bridge over Knik Arm from Anchorage; a road linking Iliamna Bay and Pile Bay west of Cook Inlet; a road providing barge access to the Donlin Creek gold mine outside of Bethel; and a bypass road to a proposed gold mine site at Rock Creek near Nome.

Senate Minority Leader Johnny Ellis, D-Anchorage, casting the lone ''no'' vote.

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