JUNEAU — A Senate panel on Monday approved for further review plans for a major hydroelectric dam.
The measure would let the Alaska Energy Authority build and operate the dam, a project that’s been discussed for decades. Lawmakers say the authority’s ability to build it was stripped in 1993.
Consultants have cited the upper Susitna River as the best spot, and the proposal is commonly referred to as the Watana, or the Susitna, dam.
The Senate Resources
Committee forwarded the bill, Senate Bill 42, to the Finance Committee for review. Most members stopped short of making explicit recommendations in favor or against the plan.
Early price estimates suggest the project could cost more than $4 billion. Gov. Sean Parnell has separately floated plans to spend
$66 million next year to prepare.