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APRN News – Alaska Politics

Bethel Reacts to Walker Administration’s firing of DA

Bethel Community members are reacting to the Walker Administration’s firing of District Attorney, June Stein. While working in the office Sunday, Stein received a letter, delivered from a Deputy Attorney General informing her of her quote “impending release.” The state so far is not explaining why she’s being fired.

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February 24, 2015

Sec. Jewell on the Hot Seat in Murkowski’s Committee

Sen. Lisa Murkowski confronted Interior Secretary Sally Jewell today at a hearing of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee. The subject was the president’s proposed budget for the Interior Department. But Murkowski used the occasion to bash Jewell for recent department decisions blocking oil development on the North Slope.

February 24, 2015

Murkowski, Jewell Spar Over North Slope Oil And Gas Development

Sen. Lisa Murkowski and Interior Secretary Sally Jewell faced off in a Senate hearing Tuesday morning in Washington.

February 24, 2015
Nome in 2002. Photo: Mildred Pierce via Creative Commons.

Federal Subsistence Board Seeks Change To Rural Determination Process

What makes a community rural? That’s a question the Federal Subsistence Board has grappled with for years. In past policy, the board weighed population size against factors like industrial development and infrastructure. But, ultimately, the definition of rural has been slippery in Alaska, where many communities exist outside the developed road system.

February 24, 2015

With School Choice Resolution, Legislature Revisits Voucher Question

With a crowd of charter school students in the gallery, the Alaska State House used a school choice resolution as a proxy for a debate on vouchers on Monday.

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February 23, 2015

Walker Files Bill Creating Marijuana Control Board

Just one day before marijuana possession becomes legal in Alaska, Gov. Bill Walker has filed legislation to create a marijuana control board.

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February 23, 2015

Marijuana Legalization Questions Linger

Alaska’s voter approved ballot measure legalizing marijuana takes effect Tuesday. Alaskans 21 and older will be able to grow, share and consume small amounts of marijuana on private property, but a lot of questions remain about how legalization will work.

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February 23, 2015

Bethel District Attorney Fired By State

Bethel’s District Attorney has been fired by the state of Alaska. While working in the office Sunday, June Stein received a letter from a Deputy Attorney General of her quote “impending release.”

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February 23, 2015
As Budgets Shrink, State Eyes Cuts to Film Incentives

As Budgets Shrink, State Eyes Cuts to Film Incentives

For the last seven years, Alaska’s offered financial incentives to draw filmmakers and TV crews to the state. But as lawmakers scramble to fill a widening gap in the budget, Alaska’s film tax credit program is on the chopping block.

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February 23, 2015
Judge Hears Arguments On Stay In Education Lawsuit

Judge Hears Arguments On Stay In Education Lawsuit

Ketchikan Superior Court Judge William Carey heard arguments Friday over whether he should approve a stay of his January decision that the State of Alaska’s requirement that local communities provide a specific amount for public education violates the Alaska Constitution.

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February 23, 2015

Arctic Drilling Regs Require Relief Rig; Shell Sees ‘Critical’ Flexibility

The Department of Interior today released proposed new Arctic-specific drilling standards for offshore oil exploration. They would require an Arctic operator to have a well cap at hand, but more controversially, a rig on standby that can drill a relief well within 45 days if there’s a blowout.

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February 20, 2015

Board of Fisheries Nominee Withdraws

Governor Bill Walker’s nominee to the Board of Fisheries has withdrawn his name from consideration. A spokesperson for Senate Majority Leader John Coghill’s office confirmed the withdrawal of Dr. Roland Maw but couldn’t provide additional details.

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February 20, 2015
The Glory Hole, Juneau’s emergency homeless shelter and soup kitchen, is temporarily closed due to a burst pipe and flood Sunday night. (Photo by Casey Kelly/KTOO)

After Providers Lobby, Walker Reverses Cuts To Homeless Programs

Advocates for the homeless in Alaska are rejoicing after Gov. Bill Walker released an updated budget proposal that restores funding for housing and homelessness services statewide.

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February 20, 2015

Walker Seeks To Scale Up State Gasline Project

When Gov. Bill Walker was elected, there were questions about the fate of the Alaska Stand Alone Pipeline project. The proposed $10 billion state-owned gasline was viewed as a backup plan to the large line currently being pursued alongside the North Slope producers, but Walker had criticized the project as being redundant. Now, Walker plans to keep the ASAP project alive — and make it bigger.

February 19, 2015

Alaska Tops Gallup’s Index of Well-Being

Gallup today released its annual Index of Well-Being, and for the first time, Alaska tops the list. The researchers who produce the Gallup-Healthways report say Alaska residents had the highest well-being in the nation in 2014.
The Gallup report doesn’t attempt to reconcile its findings with all those other lists that have Alaska at or near the top: Suicide rate, sexual assaults per capita and domestic abuse.

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February 19, 2015

Murkowski Concludes Obama Aims to Kill Alaska’s Pipeline

President Barack Obama has stopped in Alaska to refuel, but he plans to make his first real trip to the state in August, in the company of Secretary of State John Kerry. Or so says U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski. She let it slip during her annual address to the Alaska Legislature today, a speech aimed primarily at fighting the administration’s moves to shield parts of the Arctic from oil development.

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February 18, 2015

Crowd Rallies Attention Toward Climate Change

Sen. Lisa Murkowski barely talked about climate change in her annual speech to the Alaska Legislature Wednesday. And outside the Capitol, a small group rallied to bring attention to climate change and to demand more action on the issue from Murkowski.

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February 18, 2015
Port Officials Call For “Tweaks” to Shell Moorage Plan

Port Officials Call For “Tweaks” to Shell Moorage Plan

As Shell tries to chart a course back to the Arctic this summer, the company is looking for new space to store its drill rigs in Unalaska.

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February 18, 2015
HHS region 10 director Susan Johnson. (Photo by Annie Feidt, APRN - Anchorage)

Alaska’s Healthcare.gov Enrollment Jumps To Nearly 21K

Almost 21,000 Alaskans signed up for health insurance on healthcare.gov during the open enrollment period that closed Feb. 15.

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February 18, 2015

With Budget Changes, Walker Boosts Ferry, Community Jails Funding

With Wednesday’s deadline for changes, Gov. Bill Walker has sent his final amendments to the capital and operating budget to the Legislature.

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February 18, 2015