Alaska News Roundup for March 23

  • The Mudflats has the backstory on how the recorded audio of Anchorage mayoral candidate Dan Coffey allegedly admitting to bribing Anchorage Assembly Members in a conversation to current Anchorage Assemblyman Bill Starr came to be known. Get your popcorn ready.


  • This week in the Alaska Legislature there are lots of issues being discussed in both committees and on the chamber floors. The Juneau Empire thinks the update to the Alaska Military Code, the nomination hearings for new Gasline Corporation Board members and SenDan Sullivan’s joint legislative speech today.
  • According to the AP via the IRS, Alaska is the state least likely to have low-income families using paid tax preparers. Most likely is New York.

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  • Forbidden money is the subject of a piece by Pat Forgey with the Dispatch on how the legislature is looking to “clawback” some of the appropriations of previous years and yes, the PFD is mentioned.

  • APRN reports that Rep. Don Young has reintroduced the Magnuson-Stevens Act to reauthorize the country’s regulations on fishing in federal waters. This version is raising some eyebrows for the flexibility it gives fisheries managers in determining the harvesting limits.
  • The Seward City News explains how the budget cuts to education will affect Seward.
  • Get ready because more Arctic War Games are coming to the YK Delta in the next week where APRN reports that over 100 soldiers will be practicing their
    “Arctic Operational Expertise”. Maybe Maine would have been a better state for such practice?Screen Shot 2015-03-23 at 9.26.33 AMScreen Shot 2015-03-23 at 9.27.27 AM


  • The Fairbanks North Star Borough’s request for state funding to continue the popular wood stove exchange program seems likely go up in smoke, per the Fairbanks News Miner.
  • Katie Moritz with the Juneau Empire sat down with Gov. Bill Walker to get his view on how the legislative session is going and will end.
  • Alaska Army National Guard has a new commander in Col. Joseph Streff, per Stars and Stripes.Screen Shot 2015-03-23 at 9.21.45 AM


  • Rep. Lora Reinbold has an impassioned op-ed in the Dispatch where she explains her reasons for voting against the Operating Budget that caused her to be summarily (and rather publically) stripped of her Majority membership, most of her staff and all but one committee seat.
  • Charlo “F*#k It, I Quit” Greene’s Alaska Cannabis Club had an interesting weekend interaction with APD. The Washington Post has the juicy details.
  • Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) officially joined the muck slinging adventure known as the 2016 presidential primaries. What set him apart was the fact he is the first to utilize Twitter for such a momentous occasion. He also has his get to know me video. Screen Shot 2015-03-23 at 8.24.12 AM
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  • The bipartisan Student Digital Privacy and Parental Rights Act has been introduced to the House and will shortly have a Senate companion bill. The Hill and the New York Times are giddy with excitement about this piece of legislation that would protect children from K-12 from companies utilizing digital student data to create marketing profiles.
  • Rep. Kurt Olson (R-Soldotna) and Rep. Mike Chenault (R-Nikiski) held a legislative town hall over the weekend in Kenai. The Peninsula Clarion reports that the constituents focused on marijuana regulations (scared/pro), budget cuts (scared/anti) to their area and Medicaid expansion (pro).
  • Tim Bristol with Trout Unlimited wrote an op-ed in the Fairbanks News Miner as part rebuttal to former Gov. Frank Murkowski’s anti-EPA piece and part history lesson of Murkowski’s role in the Pebble mine.
  • Guess who got to be table buddies at the Governor’s Prayer Breakfast?Screen Shot 2015-03-23 at 6.27.39 AM

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