Alaska News Roundup for August 26

  • President Obama will be visiting Seward, Dillingham, Kotzebue, Anchorage, via the Seward City News, Juneau Empire, and historical inference. There may be more places announced in the coming days (fingers crossed!)
  • Alaska might be beside themselves with glee as Mr. President visits next week, but as the Washington Post points out…he isn’t the first. Their article lists the previous presidents that have visited the Last Frontier, where they traveled and for how long. Biggest surprise? FDR fishing in Juneau while wearing a suit and fedora!

    FDR

    Photo Credit of the FDR Library 

  • The Ketchikan City Council race has one more candidate in Charles “Chuck” Slagle. My little bird is looking forward to his fundraisers as Slagle is known for his smoked fish.

  • The City and Borough of Juneau Assembly is looking at a “new tool” to curb rising housing costs and prevent neighborhood blight– through property tax exemptions. The Juneau Empire reports that the assembly is looking at flexing its newly acquired authority (thanks legislature!) to exempt property owners from paying part or all of their taxes for up to 10 years!
  • Uh oh! Former Rep. Woodie Salmon (D-Beaver) was quite the naughty pirate and was found guilty by the Alaska State Troopers for illegally shooting a moose out of season. The Fairbanks News Miner reports that Salmon’s rifle AND moose antlers were seized and a summons for a September 24 court date.
  • The Sitka Assembly race must truly be is heating up since Tonia Rioux has withdrawn her candidacy citing “events in the last week” and family obligations to KCAW. There are still four candidates duking it out for the two open seats.
  • The Kodiak Daily Mirror was on hand during a ceremony by Sen. Gary Stevens (R-Kodiak) where he presented Mrs. Beverly Allen a legislative citation in honor of her belated husband, Ed Allen.

    Sen. Stevens

    Photo Credit of the Kodiak Daily Mirror

  • Rep. Les Gara (D-Anchorage) has written an eloquent op-ed in the Dispatch where he makes his case for including oil taxes and credits in the ongoing discussion on our state’s fiscal future.
  • The Juneau Empire has the misfortune to share the unfortunate news that Alaska is anticipating a $400 million larger deficit hole due to further falling crude prices.
  • Politico reports on Pres. Obama’s new administrative direction: climate change.
  • Want to know the details of Sen. Rand Paul’s (R-KY) presidential campaign stop-over to Fairbanks? Well, the Fairbanks News Miner has you covered with so many details, one could almost visualize watching Rep. Tammie Wilson ((R-North Pole) and current Fairbank’s mayoral candidate) and former US Senate candidate Joe Miller joining the stage with the presidential hopeful.
  • Got pot with you while cruising through the Anchorage muni? Keep it in the trunk, per the Dispatch.
  • The Mat-Su delegation is all over the Legislative Council’s decision to sue the state over Medicaid expansion and the Frontiersman has Rep. Mark Neuman (R-Big Lake), Rep. Lynn Gattis (R-Wasilla), Rep. Wes Keller (R-Houston), and Sen. Charlie Huggins (R-Wasilla) reasons.
  • One of my little birds told me that Gov. Bill Walker and First Lady Donna Walker probably left the Seward community reception feeling anew due to all the love and attention that was directed their way by attendees.
  • Wired reports that the White House is getting on the open-source bandwagon to create an interactive map of the US with 15+ federal agencies that allow the user to select or deselect layers of data that represent different community-based initiatives.

    Alaska

    Image Credit of the White House

  • Alaska is taking their challenge for Alaska Native tribal land trusts to the feds! The Fairbanks News Miner has the details on their Washington DC Circuit of Appeals filing, what’s at stake and the backstory of this contentious Alaskan issue.
  • APRN interviewed the Anchorage-based law firm that will be assisting the state (i.e. pro-Medicaid expansion) in the lawsuit that the Legislative Council filed (by using $450,000 of tax payer’s money for an Outside law firm to argue their side). What will the cost be to tax payers for Alaskan representation? NOTHING! Dillon & Findley law firm’s expertise will be pro-bono.
  • Juneau’s City Manager, Kim Kiefer, will be leaving pretty big shoes to fill when she retires at the end of the year so it comes as no surprise that the Juneau Empire shares the news that Juneau Mayor Merrill Sanford has organized a hiring committee to find her best possible replacement. Good luck Juneau!!
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