Alaska News Roundup for December 28

  • This week on Capital Hill will see a ton of bureaucratic procedures (and fingers crossed, parliamentary maneuvering!!) by the Senate to prevent lifting Iran’s sanctions.
  • Alaska’s own William Scannell was recently highlighted as part of Qatar Foundation International’s I Speak Arabic international program that aims to increase the number and proficiency of Arabic speakers. The site is full of interesting facts, resources and kits for teachers, parents, and students.


  • Sen. Gary Stevens (R-Kodiak) continued his charm offensive regarding the budget crisis while speaking with Homer constituents recently. By all accounts (his fan club is growing), he is quickly becoming the state’s Shepherd through the Storm and should be utilized by the governor on budget discussions throughout the state.

  • Unalaska City Council recently decided on something that is sure to cause a few tongues to way: bars are now allowed to serve food as early as 8:00am on Sundays. They also approved a lease contract with UniSea for $10,340 a year for the next 30 years for access to Unalaska’s underwater lands and allow the expansion of their docks.
  • The last City and Borough of Sitka Assembly meeting was rather trashy. Not in that Jerry Springer way, more along the lines of We Heart Cholera-Free Living The Assembly tackled the ways garbage is collected by the city and raised fees in order to funnel more funds into better procedures. Oh, and they also appointed Lauren Hughey to serve as Sitka’s official face to the H.O.P.E. Coalition.
  • Hillary Clinton and Pres. Barack Obama won Gallup’s version of Prom Queen and King as the Most Admired. Interesting to note, former Gov. Sarah Palin received the same amount of admiration as Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Aung San Suu Kyi, former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Ellen DeGeneres. Pretty cool.Happy Couple


  • Juneau’s Mayoral Special Election will officially be held on March 15 and the City and Borough of Juneau has some helpful information for those thinking of throwing their hat into the ring (you have between January 15-January 25 to make yourself a bonafide contender).
  • Butte’s air quality could put $700 million in federal highway funds in jeopardy if things are done during 2016 to get the area’s air quality back to within EPA regulatory limits. The Frontiersman explains where the pollution is coming from and what is being done about the issue.
  • The Hill has 2015’s Winners and Losers.
  • California isn’t the only place experiencing a water shortage as the Fairbanks News Miner reports that sharp decrease in the Tanana River level is going to force the North Pole City Council to vote for a $4 million extension pipe to release treated waste water into the narrowing river.


  • The Arctic Sounder has Sen. Lisa Murkowski’s good news regarding which programs across the state will be getting a bit of federal fiscal breathing room.
  • Alaska’s think tank (ISER) has some comprehensive suggestions on how to tackle the state’s soul-crushingly large budget deficit and the Dispatch’s Jeannette Lee Falsey kindly distills the information into laymen’s terms
  • Sen. Dan Sullivan and family spent Christmas day serving up meals at JBER while rocking some major headgear and smiles.sullivan


  • The City of Kodiak must now immediately release records regarding excessive force by three Kodiak police officers after KWXT’s FOIA request was initially fought by the city. APRN reports that Superior Court Judge Steve W. Cole ruled in favor of KMXT.
  • Read all about the NOAA’s 2015 Arctic report card in the Arctic Sounder.
  • It appears Alaska might just be a microcosm of how Outside politicians spar with Medicaid, per the Dispatch.
  • Politico has the Best Photos of 2015, which includes future Rep. Caroline Yoder’s first “steps” on the floor of The

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