Alexandra Gutierrez, APRN - Juneau
agutierrez (at) alaskapublic (dot) org | 907.209.1799 | About Alexandra
Earlier this spring, Alaska lawmakers attracted national attention when they introduced legislation that would allow for the arrest of federal agents charged with enforcing gun control laws. On Wednesday, the Senate passed a version of the bill that gets rid of the controversial provision.
A bill setting up a missing persons alert system for seniors with Alzheimer’s, veterans with post traumatic stress disorder, and other vulnerable adults passed the Alaska State Senate on Wednesday, after already getting approval in the House.
The Alaska State Legislature is putting the finishing touches on a $2 billion capital budget. Even though it’s small in comparison to previous years, it still funds hundreds of projects big and small across the state. But how do lawmakers decide which ones take priority? APRN’s Alexandra Gutierrez takes a look at how one set of players figure into that process: lobbyists.
Right now, the state of Alaska is obligated to provide Medicaid funding for all “medically necessary” abortions. Today the Senate passed a bill that would narrow that definition.
The future of the Knik Arm bridge project is now in question. A bill advancing the project was pulled from floor consideration last night, and now a member of the House majority is pushing for a change that would take away the Knik Arm Bridge and Toll Authority’s independence.
An audit of the Knik Arm bridge finds that the agency handling the project has “overstated” its traffic forecasts. Government auditors expect substantially less toll revenue as a result, leaving the state at risk of having to make up the shortfall.
With less than two weeks of the session to go, Gov. Sean Parnell is watching how the legislature treats the state’s budget and major bills affecting tax policy and energy projects.
As protests against legislation overhauling the state’s oil tax structure were held across the state today, the bill continues to evolve inside the Capitol building. The latest version would lower taxes even more than the last one.
The Alaska House passed legislation that would change the tenure system for urban teachers, extending their probationary period from three years to five.
The most recent version of oil tax overhaul has a new price tag: almost $5 billion over the next six years.
With less than two weeks left to the regular session, legislators are focusing their attention on the budget and with getting to a vote on major bills- like oil tax reform. Governor Sean Parnell sat down with APRN’s Alexandra Gutierrez to talk about what he would like to see in these final days.
The day after a vote on a major infrastructure project, the House majority didn’t tout their political win. Instead, messaging focused on childish behavior from a Fairbanks Democrat during debate on the legislation.
In a late-night vote on Monday, the Alaska House passed legislation meant to advance the construction of a small-diameter pipeline. It would transport natural gas from the North Slope to Southcentral for Alaskan consumption and, potentially, for export.
In a literal eleventh hour vote on Monday night, the Alaska House passed legislation meant to advance the construction of a small-diameter pipeline.
On Thursday, the Alaska State Senate passed its operating budget, and it’s slightly smaller than the one proposed by Governor Sean Parnell. Parnell hopes to see more budgets like that in the future. He’s proposed a five-year commitment to keep state general fund spending at $6.8 billion. Combined with his oil tax plan, the proposal could mean a combination of belt-tightening measures and big withdrawals from Alaska’s savings accounts.
Education advocates have long promoted pre-school as a way of closing the achievement gap between rich and poor students, and this year the president named expanding early education programs as one of his top priorities in his State of the Union address. But here in Alaska, fewer kids could have access to pre-school due to budget cuts.
A bill that would require a longer probationary period for teachers has attracted opposition from labor organizations, who say it’s an attack on job security.