Alaska News Roundup for August 5

  • Russia’s arctic land grab just became official with their submission to the UN for an expanded 2 million square kilometers of land and sea. This includes the North Pole, which the New York Times reports now has a titanium Russian flag that was planted on the seabed floor via a miniature submarine. If the UN grants Russia this right, they will control fishing and O&G drilling in this area.

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    Photo Credit of military.com

  • Sen. Lisa Murkowski could very well become the deciding vote on the Iran Nuclear Accord, per Politico.
  • How the future pot tax should be treated is the big decision before the Fairbanks North Star Borough Assembly where the Fairbanks News Miner reports that they deliberating over whether the borough electorate should decide on the issue or if they should just institute the tax cap to reduce property taxes.

  • Sen. Lisa Murkowski’s vote to have the Planned Parenthood defunding bill before the senate for a vote backfired spectacularly. The left, moderate GOP’ers and many of my little birds were livid at this perceived slap in the face. The right was more like, “Yeah, that was nice…but not enough to get Sullivan levels of love.”
  • Alaska is going to get the cold shoulder from the State Department over transboundary mines between Canada and the state, so sayeth Lt. Gov. Byron Mallott. The Dispatch reports that advocates are not taking this one decision to heart and will continue the fight for an Alaska say in mine permitting that would/could affect the Last Frontier.

  • The legal director for the Disability Law Center of Alaska, Mark Regan, wrote an op-ed in the Dispatch where he makes his case as to why Gov. Bill Walker’s plan for Medicaid Expansion is in fact legal.
  • $866,000.00+. That’s how much the state spent on the Special Session 1 and Special Session 2.0 with more claims continuing to come in. Oh, and that doesn’t even take into account the 8 day extended session back in April. The Juneau Empire has the details.
  • The Merco Press feels that Sen. Lisa Murkowski is inching closer to the finish line with her crude export ban lift bill.
  • Alaska’s economic brain trust spoke at the recent Fairbanks Chamber of Commerce on the state’s fiscal future and the Fairbanks News Miner reveals that in order to properly handle the budget hole, legislative cooperation and speedy decisions are in order.
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