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Interim president at state gasline agency resigns

The temporary head of the state’s gasline agency announced his resignation Thursday morning.

Interim Alaska Gasline Development Corp. President Joe Dubler made his retirement plans public at the corporation’s board meeting in Anchorage.

He will remain at AGDC through May 2, he said.

Dubler stepped into the lead role at the state-owned corporation in January 2019 after Gov. Mike Dunleavy made sweeping changes to the AGDC board of directors, which quickly acted to fire then-President Keith Meyer. Meyer had championed former Gov. Bill Walker’s vision for the state-led Alaska LNG Project.

Over the past year, AGDC ended its active marketing to potential Alaska LNG customers and cut 60 percent of its staff to instead focus on securing the key construction license for the project from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, which would then be sold to a private developer that would build the project.

FERC is scheduled to issue the final environmental impact statement for Alaska LNG in early March; a final ruling on the license is expected later this spring. Last summer, BP and ExxonMobil announced they would contribute $10 million each and provide technical assistance to help the state complete the FERC process.

Dubler, who worked as an executive at AGDC from 2010 to 2016, stressed throughout his most recent tenure that he always intended to lead the corporation on an interim basis.

Dave Cruz, AGDC’s longest-serving board member, reiterated that message in a brief interview. Cruz said the board had been aware of Dubler’s plans for some time.

“From day one it was going to be a six-month deal and it dragged on from there,” he said of Dubler’s employment, adding, “He did everything we asked him to do.”

Dubler said he and his wife, Patti, will be staying in Alaska and spending more time with their grandchildren. He does not expect to work full-time elsewhere.

Cruz said the board is starting the search process for Dubler’s replacement. His replacement will be expected to lead the Alaska LNG Project through the final permitting steps, sell the license and reams of associated data to a firm ready to develop the project and represent the state throughout that process.

“We’re going to have someone come in and finish the job,” Cruz said.

Elwood Brehmer can be reached at elwood.brehmer@alaskajournal.com.

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