In a letter obtained by the Landmine, Alaska Gasline Development Corporation (AGDC) President Frank Richards told former Governor Bill Walker, along with three others, that ADGC is not interested in their proposal at this time. On Monday Walker, along with former AGDC President Keith Meyer, Local 341 Business Manager Joey Merrick, and Bernie Karl, held a press conference where they announced the formation of a new group, Alaska Gasline & LNG, LLC (AGLNG). They said their plan is to take over management of the long sought after gasline project. But the letter from Richards said that AGDC is not interested in meeting with them at this time. It ends with:
Accordingly, we respectfully decline your request to meet until such time that we are ready to share a formal solicitation of interest. AGDC and the Board appreciate your keen interest in the success of the Alaska LNG Project.
You can read the full letter here.
After the Monday press conference the group sent out a press release with more information. You can see it here. It starts with:
Former Governor Bill Walker, former Alaska Gasline Development Corporation (AGDC) President Keith Meyer, Alaska Laborer’s Local 341, and Alaskan entrepreneur Bernie Karl have joined forces to form a new private enterprise, Alaska Gasline & LNG, LLC (“AGLNG”), with the purpose of requesting and accepting the leadership of the integrated Alaska gasline and LNG project, and moving the project forward to completion. AGDC has taken action to transition the project to private leadership, with the goal of identifying the new entity this year and completing the transition early next year.
The letter from Richards states they are “already collaborating with parties” on the transition. It goes on to say that if they decide to offer a solicitation they notify AGLNG.
AGDC is already collaborating with parties with whom we have an existing relationship to potentially achieve this goal. These parties have provided significant funds and in-kind contributions during the recent economic reevaluation, which successfully reduced the estimated cost of the Alaska LNG Project to a more competitive level. Collectively, we are working toward identification of a new lead party that can advance the project to Front End Engineering and Design, the next appropriate stage gate.
In early 2021, the Board will assess whether there is sufficient interest and progress towards our leadership transition goal. In the event that new Alaska LNG leadership is not identified, AGDC may formulate an open solicitation of interest to present to other qualified parties. Should AGDC offer such a solicitation in 2021, we will be sure to notify Alaska Gasline & LNG LLC.
This is a developing story. Stay tuned for more updates.
Update: Former Governor Bill Walker provided the following comment on 11/14:
We proceeded in accordance with the strategic plan adopted by the AGDC board at its its April 9, 2020 meeting. Underlying assumptions of the plan were that the state would not continue as the sole project sponsor past December 31, 2020 and if “there is not sufficient interest from strategic parties” to lead the development effort, AGDC will publicly solicit interest from others to take over the project. Should no interested party emerge, “AGDC will put the Alaska LNG project assets up for sale.” As of this date, a strategic party has not been identified and the mission of AGLNG is to form a private consortium to be in position to accept leadership and advance the gasline and LNG export project to completion by 2028. Meetings are being scheduled with the state & others.