All session, legislative leadership has promised to gavel out early, to be home in time for the Easter holiday. That didn’t happen. In fact, the Legislature did not gavel out at all. With the House and Senate struggling to make a deal on education, lawmakers are forced into extra innings.
After wrestling with how to approach the state’s massive unfunded liability for months, the Alaska Senate unanimously agreed to put $3 billion toward the public employee pension system just hours after their plan was released.
An effort to resurrect parts of House Bill 77 was abandoned on Friday night.
In Juneau, the latest version of the education funding bill emerged today, and it isn’t what school advocates were hoping for. Senate Finance co-chairman Kevin Meyer says it’s a comprehensive bill that would add $100 million to education, and he says the Republican majority is committed to keeping that money in the budget for each of the next three years.
Representatives from the “Recall Lindsey Holmes” group and Alaska’s Division of Elections met in State Superior Court on Thursday.
On Friday, a deadly incident claimed the lives of at least 12 people on Mount Everest. Willi Prittie and Ellie Henke, both residents of Talkeetna, have extensive experience on Everest.
The National Transportation Safety Board has published a preliminary report about the crash that killed two pilots near Three Step Mountain.
School Advocates Unhappy With Education Bill’s Latest Rendering; Legislators Enter Session’s Home Stretch; Series Of Quakes Rattle Northwest Alaska; ‘Recall Lindsey Holmes’ Group Takes Petition Dismissal To Court; NTSB Releases Preliminary Report on Fatal Hageland Crash; Talkeetna Guides With Everest Experience Speak About Deadly Incident; AK: Hazing Birds; 300 Villages: Akiachak
This week, we’re heading to Akiachak, in Southwest Alaska. The village is the first in the state to formally decide to dissolve its local government in favor of traditional tribal representation. Jonathan Lomack is the executive director for Akiachak Native Community Tribal Government.
At most major airports someone is paid to chase birds off the runway, but at Sitka’s airport that job is especially challenging. That’s because three-fourths of Sitka’s runway is surrounded by water. Fish spawn along its banks, attracting hungry birds. That problem was highlighted four years ago when two Alaska Airlines jets collided with eagles on takeoff. KCAW’s Emily Forman spoke with the expert who came in afterward to make sure the runway is safe.
Taking phone calls from all over the largest congressional district in the nation can be a challenge, but it also makes for quite a radio show. Alaska Congressman Don Young is back in his district for the spring recess, and ready to talk with you on the next Talk of Alaska.
APRN: Tuesday, 4/22 at 10:00am
Legislation allowing medevac membership programs to continue is on its way to Gov. Sean Parnell for his signature. The Alaska House unanimously approved Senate Bill 159 on Tuesday. It sailed through the Senate in late February.
Citing mechanical issues that affect the Carnival Miracle’s maximum cruising speed, Carnival Cruise Lines has canceled 15 of that ship’s port calls in Ketchikan this summer.
The state House voted Thursday to sunset the Alaska Film Tax Credit in 2016. The provision was part of a bill requiring state agencies to report to the Legislature on so-called “lost revenue.” That’s the millions of dollars in revenues the state doesn’t collect each year due to various fee exemptions and tax credits. The bill adds sunset dates to some of them, meaning those programs would expire if lawmakers don’t intervene before then.
Patrick Flynn takes over as chair of the Anchorage Assembly. The Alaska Legislature is still addressing major capital projects in the final days of the session. The Loussac Library bond failed by 14 votes. Why? Legislation to raise the minimum wage becomes deeply controversial. Wasilla does a turnaround on regulating the drug spice. The cost of Gov. Parnell’s North Slope initiative is ballooning. Two inmates die in Alaska prisons in a week.
KSKA: Friday, April 18, at 2:00 p.m. and Saturday, April 19, at 6:00 p.m.
KAKM: Friday, April 18, at 7:30 p.m. and Saturday, April 19, at 4:30 p.m.
The Alaska State House has voted in favor of Gov. Sean Parnell’s plan to shore up the state’s pension system.
Contract talks between the state and Alaska’s ferry workers are heating up as each side disagrees on how to make up the gap between revenues and the cost of operating the ferry system. Workers are now considering whether to authorize a strike if negotiations remain stalled.