Alaska News Roundup for April 2

  • Gov. Bill Walker’s Commonwealth North speech was by all accounts intense with the focus on increasing public involvement on budgetary issues. I have it on good authority that interest in the speech increased after Becky Bohrer tweeted this:Becky Bohrer Tweet


  • House Judiciary Committee members utilized the hearing on domestic violence to discuss their pets, per the Fairbanks News Miner.
  • Read all about whom within the Anchorage mayoral race is making it rain in today’s APRN.
  • After completing their happy dance, Shell Oil officially responds to the fed’s green light for offshore Arctic drilling with UPI.
  • In a poll of just “264 likely voters” conducted by Ivan Moore, and paid for by the Anchorage Police Department Employees Association… show Ethan Berkowitz is leading in the Anchorage mayoral race with 3% while Coffey, Halcro and Dembowski have a close three-way tie of about 16% a piece. The Dispatch explains what else Moore’s poll found.

  • ExxonMobil CEO Rex Tillerson sat down with the AP to discuss why the focus on Arctic drilling, the Exxon Valdez oil spill and anticipated risks associated with Arctic energy exploration.

    Exxon Mobil CEO

    photo credit by Reuters

  • Crescent Harbor’s oil spill is still a mystery as to its origin, according to KCAW.
  • Devin Kelly with the Dispatch did the digging and discovered no link between Anchorage mayoral candidate Dan Coffey and AO37 within the court-ordered search of city records.
  • Rep. Chris Tuck (D-Anchorage) explained his concerns on how the deep, proposed budget cuts could harm the state’s economy in the House Minority’s weekly presser.Tuck Presser


  • The Fairbanks News Miner was on hand during the Fairbanks North Star Borough’s first budget meeting for 2015-2016. The takeaway is that keeping taxes low will be tough given the state’s budget crisis.
  • APRN covered the protest outside the Anchorage LIO where more than sixty people demonstrated against the proposed education cuts.
  • Gallup has released their nationwide poll on state-by-state mood-altering drug use. Alaska is one of three states that are least likely to use drugs or medication to relax or alter moods everyday at 5%. The national average is 18.9%. Yay!?Drug Poll


  • Robert Menendez (D-NJ) indictment yesterday inspired the Washington Post to list the 12 U.S. Senators (Alaska’s Uncle Ted being #2) that have received the same dubious distinction. New Jersey has the most on the list. Bribery is the most common reason.
  • Last night was the first time the only road that links Hyder, AK to any emergency medical practitioners was closed overnight. The Juneau Empire reports on how things went.
  • Don’t know who to vote for to fill the three empty Anchorage School Board seats on April 7? The Dispatch has in-depth profiles on each of the candidates in one handy-dandy article.2015 School Board


  • EPIC has filed a lawsuit against the FAA’s proposed commercial drone rules citing privacy concerns, per The Hill.
  • Paddy Notar with the Turnagain Times sat down with Sen. Lisa Murkowski where she eloquently discussed untested imported Chinese fluoride, her YouTube video, immigration, and Social Security.
  • The Alaska Journal of Commerce reports on the latest state fish news including that Sen. Dan Sullivan has tapped Rep. Don Young’s former legislative aide, Erik Elam, to be his new fisheries advisor.

    Sullivan Fish Advisor

    photo credit of LinkedIn

  • The New York Times explains the recent findings in Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment that polar bears will not be able to thrive on land food (like goose eggs).
  • Becky Bohrer with the AP reports that the Senate Finance Committee is proposing a freeze on public employee income increases. This move could save the state potentially $57 million, though the pay increases targeted are mostly to keep up with inflation, which explains the outcry from unioned and non-union public employees alike.
  • The Peninsula Clarion has the DOT’s options for the proposed Cooper Landing Bypass.Cooper Landing Bypass


  • Politico lays out its case as to why Fox News is actually a Paper Tiger regarding their presidential race influence.
  • The Mat-Su does not want anything to do with Monofill and the Frontiersman explains why.
  • The Gulf of Alaska is the recipient of too much fresh water and glacier melt and this could negatively impact the state’s seas and shoreline ecologies, per the Daily Kos.
  • Jonathan Kreiss-Tomkins (D-Sitka) appears to be taking a cue from Rep. Don Young on office décor with KCAW’s announcement that the legislator is in talks to acquire a ‘ferocious’ stuffed red squirrel from Bill Foster’s political memorabilia collection.



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