Alaska News Nightly: April 17, 2015

Stories are posted on the APRN news page. You can subscribe to APRN’s newsfeeds via emailpodcast and RSS. Follow us on Facebook at alaskapublic.org and on Twitter @aprn.

Download Audio

Key Issues Linger As Legislative Session’s End Closes In

Alexandra Gutierrez, APRN – Juneau

The Alaska State Legislature is scheduled to gavel out on Sunday, before the stroke of midnight. But many of the issues lawmakers have delved into – the budget, Medicaid, marijuana – are still unsettled. APRN’s Alexandra Gutierrez joins us to talk about what the end game for the legislative session looks like.

Arctic Priorities Questioned on Eve of U.S. Chairmanship

Liz Ruskin, APRN – Washington DC

The United States assumes chairmanship of the Arctic Council next week, kicking off a two-year window to assert American priorities in the region. The U.S. and other member nations have committed to making the Arctic a “zone of peace.” But now, some Arctic watchers wonder if the U.S. needs to add an item to its Arctic priority list:  get tough with Russia.

Refined Fuel Tax Measure Heads To Governor’s Desk

Zachariah Hughes, KSKA – Anchorage

Though discussion of new revenues hasn’t gone far in the Legislature this session, today the Senate passed a measure taxing refined fuels.

Anchorage Church Officials Lead Rally For Medicaid Expansion

Annie Feidt, APRN – Anchorage

Hundreds of Anchorage residents gathered in Cuddy Park Thursday night to rally for Medicaid expansion.  The event was organized by AFACT, Anchorage Faith & Action Congregations Together- a coalition of local churches. Organizers hope the rally will make a difference as lawmakers enter the final days of the legislative session.

UAF To Cut Several Low-Enrollment Programs

Dan Bross, KUAC – Fairbanks

The repercussions of reduced state funding are hitting home at the University of Alaska Fairbanks. Some academic programs are going away.

AK: Fur Fashion

Rachel Waldholz, KCAW – Sitka

This spring, Sitka artist Peter Williams took a trip to New York City, to show his work during fashion week.  A designer and marine mammal hunter, Williams makes everything from hats to earrings from sea otter and sealskin. He’s been trying to break into the lucrative fashion world for years. And he’s got a larger goal in mind: bringing Alaska Native designs to luxury buyers worldwide. Williams says that one way to save a traditional art form, is to create a market for it.

49 Voices: Wayne Constantine

This week, we’re hearing from Wayne Constantine, who is Athabascan and lives on a homestead on the Stony River.