Category Archives: Sen. John Coghill

Alaska News Roundup for December 3

  • Sen. John Coghill (R-Fairbanks) has testified before Sen. Lisa Murkowski’s powerful Energy and Natural Resources Committee along with six other Alaskans about how the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act (ANILCA) is going and what issues needed to be addressed.coghill

 

  • The Mat-Su Borough Assembly had to dust off an old parliamentary maneuver to temporarily borrow $2.5 million to fix a major safety/structural issue with the Port MacKenzie’s barge dock until the insurance company is satisfied with the necessary documentation and cuts the owed insurance money. The Frontiersman fully explains the needed repairs and how the Assembly quickly fixed the fiscal holdup.
  • Quinnipiac University has released the results of nation wide poll on Americans’ perspective on refugees, terrorists and Congress’ handling of the issue. The results were surprising to many news outlets as 58% of American voters felt the greatest threat to safety/security was from homegrown jihadists, then 17% feared radicalized foreign visitors down to 16% of people fearing terrorists hiding among Syrian refugees. This reaction was across the board with age and ethnicity.Refugee

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Alaska News Roundup for October 8

  • Today’s THE day in state legislative meets healthcare at the State Reform Health Policy Conference in Anchorage!! Everyone is going to be there. From one of the Big Three ( Valerie Davis of HSS (!)); to the battling of opinions on the state’s healthcare direction with Sen. John Coghill (R-North Pole), Sen. Pete Kelly (R-Fairbanks), Sen. Cathy Giessel (R-Anchorage) explaining their vision at the 1:45pm panel; and Sen. Bill Wielechowski (D-Anchorage), Rep. Chris Tuck (D-Anchorage), Rep. Les Gara (D-Anchorage) sharing their vision. The biggest surprise of pre-event excitement from many of my little birds is regarding the 9:30am panel with Rep. Paul Seaton (R-Homer) to discuss reforming Medicaid. Lots of fans, he has.Seaton

 

  • Could the Permanent Fund Board garner a “Pope-like” figure or more likely a “PF Czar”? That is the latest question wafting out of every Alaskan’s favorite state entity, though the hunt for a regular Executive Director is the main focus for the state with my little birds liking candidates Alexander Slivka and Angela Rodell the most out of the short list.
  • Congratulations Felix Wong and Stephen Bradford on their individual wins for a seat at the Ketchikan Gateway Borough Assembly dais!
  • Kodiak Island Borough now officially can claim Kyle Crow, Mel Stephens and Dennis Symmons as part of their Assembly team.
  • Heads up Sen. Peter Micciche (R-Soldotna) and Rep. Kurt Olson (R-Soldotna): the Kenai Peninsula Borough School districts has their official legislative marching orders for you and it’s all focused on protecting their access to funding. But that doesn’t mean individual input isn’t still being requested. There are lots of locations to be a part of the Oct. 15 budget development meeting.
  • Neither Mat-Su Borough Mayor Larry DeVilbiss nor his challenger Vern Halter is conceding the race until the vote count is finalized, per the Frontiersman.
  • Anchorage is in talks with Conoco Phillips to buy back some of their leases in the upper Cook Inlet for ML&P to control, though as APRN explains…”any purchase will have to first be approved by the [Anchorage] assembly.”

    Cook Inlet

    Photo Credit of APRN

  • Sen. Lisa Murkowski is beginning to see the light at the end of her hard-fought battle to lift the 40+ oil export ban with The Hill reporting that the White House has been making noises that point to a possible signature!
  • Palmer is one town that won’t be selling commercial pot as the town voted 318 to 266 to ban this particular economic sector from opening shop and paying taxes, per the Dispatch.
  • The Western Director and Senior Attorney for NRDC wrote an op-ed for Huffington Post where he made his case for why the recent independent study that found that the relationship between the EPA and anti-Pebble groups was improper, was nothing more than a PR Stunt from a “cash-starved” Pebble Partnership.
  • Mayor-elect Karl Kassel is not wasting time in beginning his transition to full-on mayor. The Fairbanks News Miner reports that he is already taking applications for positions within his administration and has a basic idea of the changes he wants to make.
  • Rep. Les Gara (D-Anchorage) is not one to let injury slow him down and that was evident last night at the latest UAA College Democrats meeting where he gave a “barn-burning” speech against the current oil tax structure.20151007-Rep-Gara-at-UAA-College-Democrats-Meeting-1

 

  • Sen. Dan Sullivan is backing a new bill regarding illegal immigrants and Politico explains the legislation’s aim and who else is getting on the bandwagon.
  • Quinnipiac has just released their latest poll that shows of the 2016 swing state US Senate races, only Ohio’s Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) vs. Ted Strickland (D) is a toss-up, though Democratic challengers in Florida are gaining traction.
  • Rep. Don Young tweeted his support on H.R. 538 that would give Alaska Natives the ability to utilize their lands without “heavy hand of federal government”.Rep. Young

 

  • Doyon, Limited is expanding their O&G exploration within the Nenana basin with plans to drill their 3rd exploratory well in the summer of 2016, per the Fairbanks News Miner.
  • APRN explains the state’s DNR decision on Alaskans’ rights over natural resource use and why PacRim Chuitna Coal is not amused.
  • While the numbers are still being finalized, it appears that yesterday may have shattered voting records for the past ten years in Fairbanks!
  • The Frontiersman has an excellent piece about Mat-Su Assembly candidate (and future powerhouse) Maria Serrano and her tenacious spirit that took her from simply a name on a ballot to a formidable challenger despite her 19 years.
  • In happy fun time news: the Juneau Empire reports that while the original partnership between the Vincent de Paul Society and GMD Development went belly-up with their plans to bring affordable housing to the capital city, there is still forward movement to ensure the project grows into fruition.
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Alaska News Roundup for September 30

  • In that was quick news: Roselynn Cacy has become candidate #4 for the now open Senate District L seat Southwest Anchorage. This is expected to be old had for Casey as she ran for the seat back in 2012, but as the Dispatch reports, this time around she will first have win the Democratic primary against long-time campaigning Forrest McDonald. Jeff “I’ve never met a Speedo I couldn’t rock” Landfield and Natasha von Imhof have their own primary battle for the GOP bid before the final face-off in November 2016.
  • Oh my gosh! Oh my gosh! The lucky coffee-drinking Juneau residents just got luckier with the announcement that Coppa, GonZo, and the Rookery are going to match discounted coffee prices to October 6th’s voter turnout. As the Juneau Empire reports that last year’s turnout was 29% and that would have meant 29 cents off a cuppa.
  • Sen. Lisa Murkowski might have come a long way baby as the ONLY Chairwoman of a full committee, but according to Politico…this is probably as far as the GOP will allow her (or any other GOP Congressional women) to ascend.
YouTube Preview Image

 

  • The Peninsula Clarion covered the latest Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly Seat 1 candidate debate between incumbent Kelly Wolf, Gary Knopp, Robin Davis, and David Wartinbee.

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Alaska News Roundup for August 28

  • The Anchorage Superior Court room was packed yesterday to hear the oral arguments over the Legislative Council’s lawsuit against Gov. Bill Walker’s executive powers to expand Medicaid. Everyone was there, that is, as APRN pointed out…except the Outside lawyers representing the Legislative Council. They deigned to SKYPE into the hearing from their spacious offices in Washington, D.C.
  • Downtown Anchorage is going to be experiencing major road closures during President Obama’s visit to our largest city. The Dispatch has all the details of where and when the closures take affect, who’s affected and alternative routes…but generally speaking stay away from downtown Monday. Take a sick day, play hooky and bask in the glow that is this historic presidential visit.

    anc map

    Image Credit of the Dispatch

  • Think again about getting any juicy details about President Obama’s upcoming visit to Seward because as the Seward City News (and your humble blogger) found out…city officials are NOT sharing.

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Alaska News Roundup for July 31

  • In can this possibly be real new, the Homer Tribune reports that after Buccaneer Resources declared bankruptcy and left many local businesses in a financial lurch, after demanding businesses to give back half a year’s worth of expenditures Buccaneer paid for use of their services; the O&G company is now demanding the City of Homer do the same! Buccaneer Resources is requesting re-payment of $17,457 the city has already earned and received payment for “dockage, wharfage, supplying water and storage and other city fees.” Really!!
  • It’s Christmas in July for many Fairbanks area ski and dog mushing clubs as the Fairbanks North Star Borough Assembly voted to give five of these clubs a free snow machine each! The Fairbanks News Miner that it isn’t all rainbows and glitter as the borough has decided to stop paying for the maintenance and insurance on the machines on behalf of the groups as liability has become an issue.rainbows

 

  • Regulate not ban is the mantra by the Ketchikan Marijuana Advisory Committee to the Ketchikan Assembly.
  • Wasilla gets a special bubble to fill on their October ballot this fall. The Frontiersman relays the Wasilla City Council decision to put before the voters the question of whether to keep the sales tax rate at 3% (with an anticipated $6 million that would prevent a city-only property tax) or let it drop back down to its expected 2% now that the revenue has been collected to build the new library.
  • Shell is back to drillin’ in the Arctic as of 5:00pm last night. This is the first time since the 2012 debacle that Shell’s presence has been felt.
  • Sen. Lisa Murkowski’s mondo energy package has gotten tons of ink since she first announced her legislative intensions back before Breakup. Most of the focus has been on the bipartisan effort, but APRN reveals that there are actually 2 bills: and one…not so much.

    Evil Twin

    The tale of the good twin/bad twin anew.

  • Man, the hits keep coming for the North Slope Borough with Fairbanks News Miner reporting that the borough just settled with the EPA for $445,000 over alleged hazardous waste violations between 2012-2014.
  • Greenpeace USA has been found in contempt by US District Court Judge Sharon Gleason and received a fine of $2,500 an hour beginning yesterday at 10:00am AKST until all the Oregon bridge protesters have removed themselves. The Juneau Empire reports that the fine escalates until $100,000 per hour by 10:00am on August 2. Ouchie!
  • NBC News obtained a secret NSA map that shows the 600+ companies and government agencies that have been hacked by the Chinese beginning in 2009.Hackers

 

  • Both Sen. Lisa Murkowski and Sen. Dan Sullivan voted for the Surface Transportation and Veterans Health Care Choice Improvement Act-though only Sen. Murkowski got mentioned by Real Estate Rama.
  • Sen. John Coghill (R-North Pole) wrote an op-ed in the Dispatch where he makes his case as to why Gov. Bill Walker’s Medicaid expansion might violate state law by citing state code and SCOTUS rulings.
  • While the 2016 primaries are roughly a year away, Jeff Landfield and Sen. Lesil McGuire (R-Anchorage) are getting into a social media feud ala Drake and Meek Mills. The Dispatch details the beef and accusations’ being bandied about while the Democratic Senate Challenger, Forrest McDonald, has wisely remained out of it.
  • Anchorage Mayor Ethan Berkowitz has appointed his new Director of Public Transit: Jody Karcz. She brings with her 30+ years of direct work within the muni’s public transportation department as well as a private citizen with transportation-related organizations/programs. Congrats Jody!

    karcz

    Former Labor Com./Sen. Click Bishop (R-Fairbanks) on far left. Photo Credit of AK Labor Department

  • Hillary Clinton has mentioned her all time favorite job as a worker on Alaska’s slime line a few times while on the campaign trail as a way to make her more relatable to voters. It turns out that this life-changing job lasted only 1 week after she was let go for asking too many questions. She went onto getting another job.
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