Support for West Susitna Access Project
December 21, 2021 • Mat-Su Borough Assembly Meeting

Good evening, my name is Kari Nore, I am the Project Manager for the Resource Development Council for Alaska, Inc. commonly referred to as RDC and I am here to testify today in support of the West Susitna Access Project. RDC is an Alaskan trade association with members in fishing, forestry, mining, oil and gas, and tourism, as well as the 12 regional Native corporations, labor, individuals, and others supporting the responsible development of Alaska’s natural resources.  

It is a policy of RDC to advocate for increased access to and across public lands for resource and community development, as well as for multiple use of public lands. With less than one percent of Alaska in conventional private ownership, access should be available on other lands. 

It is also a policy of RDC to support transportation projects that enhance resource and community development activities, as well as support efforts that stimulate investment in transportation infrastructure by catalyzing private partnership investment through the public-private-partnership model. Alaska, being a relatively young state, lacks infrastructure, particularly in rural and coastal areas.

Further, at a time when Alaska needs to grow and diversify its economy, investing in infrastructure development concepts would create jobs and economic value for our entire state.

While a resource development project in the West Susitna region tied to this project has not been formally proposed, RDC urges stakeholders to allow this and any potential project to go through the vetting process.

Denying full review of this opportunity would pose significant ramifications for community infrastructure projects and responsible resource development in Alaska.

Lastly, I would be remiss not to point out the potential benefits that could come with this project: jobs, including training and lifelong skills, economic diversification, and other opportunities. 

Thank you for the opportunity to comment on this project tonight.