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Liz Ruskin, APRN

lruskin (at) alaskapublic (dot) org  | About Liz

FAA break-up bill clears U.S. House committee

FAA break-up bill clears U.S. House committee

A bill to privatize the nation’s air traffic controllers cleared the Transportation Committee in the U.S. House last night. Rep. Don Young says he amended it to protect Essential Air Service and Alaska's air taxis. Download Audio
February 12, 2016
Fainting aside, Air Force says F-35 is OK

Fainting aside, Air Force says F-35 is OK

President Obama’s 2017 Air Force budget would slow the pace of buying F-35s. That’s the new fighter jet slated for Eielson Air Force Base. But top Air Force officials still speak highly of the plan to station them at the Fairbanks base. Never mind that one general lost consciousness when discussing the F-35's budget. Download Audio
February 11, 2016
Budget defers 5 jets, but Air Force general 'excited' for F-35s in Alaska

Budget defers 5 jets, but Air Force general ‘excited’ for F-35s in Alaska

President Obama’s 2017 Air Force budget would slow the pace of buying F-35s, the new fighter jet slated for Eielson Air Force Base. But the Air Force chief of staff still speaks highly of the plan to keep them at the Fairbanks base.
February 11, 2016
Young: FAA privatization bill harms Alaska air travel

Young: FAA privatization bill harms Alaska air travel

A U.S. House bill would turn air traffic controllers into employees of a non-profit corporation. Surprisingly, the air traffic controllers’ union supports it. Alaska Congressman Don Young says the bill would also undermine Essential Air Service. Download Audio
February 10, 2016
2017 budget

Obama budget reveals Alaska flashes

President Obama delivered his final budget to Congress this morning. It has a picture of Denali on the cover, and several big-ticket Alaska items among its pages. Download Audio
February 9, 2016
State seeks power to prosecute Bill Allen on federal trafficking charge

State seeks power to prosecute Bill Allen on federal trafficking charge

Alaska Attorney General Craig Richards says the state wants authority to pursue charges against former VECO boss Bill Allen for allegedly transporting a young woman across state lines for sex. The state has tried before, but in a letter to U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch today, Richards cites a new law that requires her to allow the state to pursue the federal case, or provide a detailed explanation why she won’t. Download Audio
February 5, 2016
Obama proposes big new tax on oil

Obama proposes big new tax on oil

President Obama wants to impose a $10-per-barrel tax on crude oil. An industry adovcate calls it an attempt to punish oil companies. Sen. Lisa Murkowski gave it "absolutely no chance" of passing Congress. Download Audio
February 4, 2016

Sen. Sullivan co-sponsors bill to split 9th Circuit Court of Appeals

The age-old effort to split up the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals is back. Republican senators Dan Sullivan of Alaska and Steve Daines of Montana have co-sponsored the latest bill.
February 4, 2016
Bill aims to split Ninth Circuit Court

Bill aims to split Ninth Circuit Court

The age-old effort to split up the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals is back. Republican senators Dan Sullivan of Alaska and Steve Daines of Montana have co-sponsored the latest bill.
February 3, 2016
New system will warn of big quakes - but not in Alaska

New system will warn of big quakes – but not in Alaska

A prototype of an earthquake early warning system called Shake Alert is close to launch. Soon, West Coast residents will be able to get alerts on their cell phones a few seconds to a few minutes before a big quake strikes. But the warnings won’t cover Alaska.
February 2, 2016

Congress OKs Coast Guard bill to transfer lands

Congress has approved a Coast Guard bill that includes several land transfers Alaska’s congressional delegation has pursued for years. One of them is at Point Spencer, to advance the possible construction of an Arctic deepwater port near Nome. Bering Straits Native Corporation hopes to develop the port, in partnership with the state of Alaska. Download Audio
February 1, 2016
As U.S. buys more guns, state agency has more dough than it can handle

As U.S. buys more guns, state agency has more dough than it can handle

The Alaska Division of Wildlife Conservation is largely funded by a federal tax on the sale of guns and ammunition, and sales nationwide are booming. But now the division may have to give back a portion of its bounty. Download Audio
February 1, 2016

FDA stops imports of genetically engineered salmon

The FDA issued an alert this morning to stop imports of genetically engineered salmon.
January 29, 2016
For one brief day, women run the U.S. Senate

For one brief day, women run the U.S. Senate

In Washington, the side streets of Capitol Hill look suitable for running the Iditarod. But the U.S. Senate did meet this morning. For all of 10 minutes. Only the female senators from two northern states participated. Download Audio
January 26, 2016
Senate to take up energy modernization bill

Senate to take up energy modernization bill

The big snow storm that struck the East Coast over the weekend has delayed the start of Congress’s work week. But when the Senate returns, it will take up one of Sen. Lisa Murkowski’s biggest priorities: an energy modernization bill. Murkowski says the energy world has changed a lot since 2007, when the last such bill passed Congress. Download Audio
January 25, 2016
Murkowski sees departures, promotions of top staff

Murkowski sees departures, promotions of top staff

U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski today announced a slew of staff changes. Current and former employees say the timing of the multiple departures is coincidental. For those of you keeping score at home, sharpen your pencils: We'll take it from the top. Download Audio
January 22, 2016
The name is 'Pollock.' Just 'Pollock'

The name is ‘Pollock.’ Just ‘Pollock’

It’s official: The fish formerly known as “Alaska Pollock” now goes by a single name. It’s just called “pollock” now. Download Audio
January 21, 2016
Top Army nominee says he's not keen to cut Alaska troops

Top Army nominee says he’s not keen to cut Alaska troops

When Pentagon nominees comes before the Senate Armed Services Committee for a confirmation hearing, it’s a sure bet that Sen. Dan Sullivan will press them to rethink the announced cuts to JBER's 4-25th. Eric Fanning, nominated for Army secretary, offered little resistance. Download Audio
January 21, 2016
Supreme Court hears Alaska hovercraft case

Supreme Court hears Alaska hovercraft case

The justices of the U.S. Supreme Court debated Wednesday morning whether the Park Service can impose its rules on rivers that flow through Alaska’s national parks and preserves. Download Audio
January 20, 2016

Supreme Court hears case challenging NPS authority

The U.S. Supreme Court is hearing arguments Wednesday morning in a case challenging the National Park Service’s authority to ban hovercraft in Alaska’s federal parks and preserves.
January 20, 2016