Alaska News Roundup for June 18

  • A mondo piece of “almost-uninhabitable land, water and glacier that is about 1.5 times the size of Rhode Island” might become the ire of cartographiles if the Alaska Supreme Court rules that it should be included as part of the state, per the Juneau Empire.
  • The FBI and the North Slope Borough are now working together to discover how drug and monetary evidence from the borough’s police department went missing. The Arctic Sounder has the details on this ongoing investigation.
  • Kodiak Wants You! At least, the Kodiak Island Borough wants interested parties to know the filing process for the vacant Assembly seat following former Assemblywoman Carol Austerman’s
  • Alaska political wonks take note; Anchorage’s Sable Scotton (age 10) will be breaking bread with FLOTUS as the Last Frontier’s winner of the Healthy Lunch Challenge, per KTVA.



  • The Juneau Empire has more details that are coming out on Charlie Huggins’ convicted staffer. It turns out that since her conviction for pointing a gun on her roommate, she has been receiving her salary…just not the full $10,404 monthly amount. The portion Deborah Grundmann has been receiving is still unknown.

  • The Senate Appropriations Committee has advanced the FY16 $30.01 billion funding bill for the EPA and the Interior Department. The Hill reports on the opposition of the bill’s budget cuts.
  • The Kenai Peninsula Borough has requested Bill Walker to issue a disaster declaration and potentially a statewide burning ban. The Peninsula Clarion interviewed both Kenai’s Mayor and the Borough Mayor on the importance this determination will mean to their community.
  • Gallup’s latest poll focuses on the rise in left leaning Democrats. The past 14 years has seen an increase of 17% of self-identifying Democrats who view themselves as socially liberal and economically modest/liberal.Dem


  • Homer new $2.3 million Harbormaster’s Office is now open for business in part due to legislative funds and harbor revenues, per the Homer Tribune.
  • The Pew Charitable Trusts will provide free technical assistance to discover what’s behind Alaska’s booming incarceration rates. The Dispatch reports that it will be a seven-month review that will be focused on data-driven reform proposals. As of right now, Alaska spend more than $300 million on corrections, that’s a 50% increase within the past decade.


  • Fireworks within the Fairbanks North Star Borough are now officially a no-no!
  • The verberations stemming from Sen. Dan Sullivan’s ominous statements during a recent Senate Environment and Public Works committee hearing regarding EPA nominees can be felt all the way in ChemistryWorld.
  • President Obama’s trade deal has been given an unexpected reprieve from the hangman’s noose with the House’s vote to “fast track” his authority. The Washington Post’s article about the move ends with two paragraphs of quotes by Sen. Lisa Murkowski about support, trust and bipartisanship. Interesting.
  • Sen. Dan Sullivan gets to add another line on his resume! As of Wednesday, he became not just a member, but co-Chair of the Marine Corp caucus whose focus will be “safety, security, training and wellness” of the Marine Corps.
  • KCAW explains the legislative correction being sponsored by Rep. Don Young for five of Alaska’s “landless” native communities that were excluded from the 1971’s Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act.
  • The Juneau Empire reports that the City and Borough of Juneau Assembly has appointed Ritchie Dorrier, Tom Rutecki, Greggory Williams, Mat Mertz, Pat Watt, Joe Parrish and Beth Weldon to the newly formed Aquatics Board that oversees the area’s 2 public pools.
  • The state budget cuts strike again! This time in the form of exacerbating the wildfire problems because one of the state’s rescue helicopters is being grounded due to lack of funds. The Fairbanks News Miner has the details of the price tag to operate the extra rescue helicopter and the vital efforts it has been utilized in the past.

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