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Anne Hillman, KSKA - Anchorage

ahillman (at) alaskapublic (dot) org  |  About Anne

ASD budget surplus indicator of unfilled positions

The Anchorage School District spent less money than they planned during the first quarter of this year. If that trend continues, they’ll have an extra $22 million left over by the end of June 2015. Much of the savings come from the district’s difficulty in hiring and retaining highly-experienced teachers and staff. ASD is spending less than planned on salaries and benefits.

November 20, 2014

Community gives input on Anchorage plan to end homelessness

The municipality is developing a new community plan to end homelessness in Anchorage. During a listening session held Wednesday evening, about 20 people gathered to discuss possible solutions to the decades old problem, including involving more local government and making services more efficient.

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November 19, 2014
Benita Lozano shows off her new heater. Hillman/KSKA

Weatherization program brings energy savings and safety

The state’s weatherization program began in 1978, during the energy crisis, and continues to help families deal with ever-rising energy costs. Weatherizing means making heating systems more efficient and plugging up the holes in a home to keep the heat inside. But it’s not just about economics, it’s about safety.

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November 19, 2014
Students call for action, public comment on U-Med Access Road

Students call for action, public comment on U-Med Access Road

Students at the University of Alaska – Anchorage are trying to motivate their classmates and the community to get informed about a controversial proposed infrastructure project — the U-Med District Northern Access Road. They say the public still has a chance to shape the project’s future because it’s not a done deal.

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November 14, 2014

ENSTAR rates to hold nearly steady for 7 months, prices similar to last winter

Enstar gas prices won’t change much for the next 7 months. Rates will hold steady at just under 78 cents per hundred cubic feet starting in January. That’s 5 and half cents over current rates and about the same as last winter. For an average household on an average month, that’s a $6.70 increase.

November 13, 2014
Workers at the Division of Elections scan early, question, and absentee ballots. Hillman/KSKA

Claman increases lead in House District 21 race

Democrat Matt Claman has pulled further ahead of his opponent, Republican Anand Dubey, in the House District 21 race. The Division of Elections started counting absentee and question ballots Tuesday afternoon. Claman is now ahead by 86 votes.

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November 11, 2014

ASD asks state legislators for new education funding formula

The Anchorage School District made their case for increasing state education funding to legislators during a luncheon Thursday. With the current funding formula, the district projects they will cut 720 jobs over the next three years. Class sizes will increase to about 10 more students per class than evidence-based research recommends.

November 6, 2014

Election signs find new homes under flooring, in chicken coops

Election day is over and political signs are disappearing from yards and intersections. But where do they go? To be reused or recycled.

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November 6, 2014
Anchorage Voters Repeal AO-37, Return Many Incumbents

Anchorage Voters Repeal AO-37, Return Many Incumbents

Anchorage voters repealed AO-37, the controversial labor law, during Tuesday’s election. They returned many incumbents and also sent some new Republicans to the state legislature as well.

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November 5, 2014
Vote No on 1 supporters

Anchorage voters overturn AO-37, support most incumbents

Anchorage voters repealed AO-37, the controversial labor law, during Tuesday’s election. They returned many incumbents and also sent some new Republicans to the state legislature as well.

November 5, 2014
Anchorage Voters Motivated by Different Causes

Anchorage Voters Motivated by Different Causes

A steady stream of voters filed into Airport Heights Elementary in Anchorage this morning to cast their ballots. From life-long voters to first-timers, they had different reasons.

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November 4, 2014
Mallott brings principles, finance experience to Lt. Gov. race

Mallott brings principles, finance experience to Lt. Gov. race

Byron Mallott has held many positions in his 71 years. He was the CEO of the Permanent Fund, the CEO of Sealaska, the president of AFN, and even briefly held the mayor’s seat in both Yakutat and Juneau. Now, he’s running for lieutenant governor.

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November 3, 2014
House District 21 candidates blur some party lines but not others

House District 21 candidates blur some party lines but not others

Two candidates are running for Democrat-turned-Republican Lindsey Holmes former seat in West Anchorage’s House District 21. And like their predecessor, some of their views blur typical party lines.

November 3, 2014
Judge rules state must comply with National Guard records request

Judge rules state must comply with National Guard records request

An Alaska Superior Court judge ruled Thursday that the governor’s office must start providing documents about the National Guard scandal to Alaska Public Media and Alaska Dispatch News. The State has until noon Friday to hand over any related public records they have already identified and a privilege log that explains why they cannot provide other documents.

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October 30, 2014

Alaska Public Media, Alaska Dispatch News Take State To Court Over National Guard Documents

Alaska Public Media and Alaska Dispatch News are taking the State to court because the state government has failed to provide documents regarding the National Guard Scandal.

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October 29, 2014
David LaPain. (Photo by Anne Hillman, KSKA - Anchorage)

New Geologic Materials Center Opens In Anchorage

The State has a new library – for rocks. The new Geologic Materials Center opened in Anchorage Wednesday in what used to be the old Sam’s Club. The facility is aimed at giving industry members, academics and the public access to the wealth of data kept in core samples from around the state.

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October 29, 2014
Experienced Senate N candidates differ on most issues

Experienced Senate N candidates differ on most issues

Two experienced but very different politicians are both running for Senate Seat N in South Anchorage and Girdwood.

October 28, 2014

McGee, Vazquez vie for open House District 22 seat

Rep. Mia Costello vacated the seat for House District 22 this year when she decided to run for Senate K instead. Neither of the candidates vying for her house seat have served in the legislature before, and their positions have some overlap.

October 23, 2014
Candidate Laurie Hummel for House District 15

Ret. Colonel runs for House District 15, seeks to reduce and realign budget

A political newcomer is vying for the House seat in Anchorage’s district 15, which contains Muldoon and Elmendorf. Retired Army Colonel Laurie Hummel, a Democrat, is challenging Republican Gabrielle LeDoux, who has served in the legislature representing first Kodiak and now district 15. KSKA spoke with Hummel about her campaign. LeDoux did not respond to requests for an interview.

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October 21, 2014

Consolidating ASD schools under consideration, but not likely to save money in short term

The Anchorage School Board wants the district administration to look at how consolidating schools could help close the district’s anticipated $22 million budget gap. Preliminary data shows it may hurt more than help in the short term.

October 20, 2014