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Legislative News Headlines

Ben Matheson, KYUK - Bethel

Governor Signs Bill in Bethel to Ease Autopsy Burden

Governor Parnell signs HB 301, which eases the burdens on families for required autopsies. L to R: Alaska Medical Examiner Dr. Gary Zientek, Rep. Bob Herron, Governor Sean Parnell, YKHC President and CEO Dan Winkelman, and Senator Lyman Hoffman. (Photo by Dean Swope, KYUK - Bethel)

Governor Sean Parnell was in Bethel Thursday to sign a bill intended to help rural families navigate the process of having an autopsy done hundreds of miles away in Anchorage.

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Alexandra Gutierrez, APRN - Anchorage

Judge Blocks Law Limiting Medicaid Payments For Abortion

In an order issued on Tuesday, Judge John Suddock wrote that there are “serious questions of constitutional validity” of a new state law that puts limits on what qualifies as a “medically necessary” abortion.

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Alexandra Gutierrez, APRN - Anchorage

Legislators Authorize $500,000 For Anchorage LIO Furniture

A subcommittee concluded that the Anchorage LIO should be outfitted with surplus furniture from state agencies, with a cap of $100,000 for new furniture, but that recommendation was rejected.

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Alexandra Gutierrez, APRN - Anchorage

FAA Hazardous Material Fine Prompts Legislators To Redo Relocation Policy

Next session, state lawmakers will have to be a little more careful about what they ship down to Juneau. The Legislative Council has changed their moving reimbursement policy in response to the Federal Aviation Administration discovering hazardous materials in a representative’s air freight.

Anne Hillman, KSKA - Anchorage

Alaska Arctic Policy Commission Listens to Community Input

The Alaska Arctic Policy Commission held a listening session today in Anchorage. The aim was to get more statewide input, especially from the Alaska Native community, on how the Commission should try to shape future Arctic policy.

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The Associated Press

Parnell: Pipeline Agreement Signed

Gov. Sean Parnell says an agreement has been signed that allows for the next stage in pursuing a major liquefied natural gas project.

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Margaret Friedenauer, KHNS - Haines

Legislation Opens Doors For Medevac Providers

A piece of state legislation passed this spring opened the door for more competition among medevac providers in the state, and one company has taken advantage of that opportunity.

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Casey Kelly, KTOO - Juneau

Legislation Transfers $3 Billion From State Savings To Public Employee Pension Systems

Surrounded by dozens of public employees in the atrium of Juneau’s State Office Building, Gov. Sean Parnell today signed legislation transferring $3 billion from state savings into Alaska’s public employee pension systems.

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Alexandra Gutierrez, APRN - Anchorage

New State Law To Bring Back Universal Vaccine Access

Universal access to vaccines may be coming back to Alaska. The governor signed a law this week that allows the state to serve as a broker between insurance providers and pharmaceutical companies to get immunizations at bulk rates.

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Alexandra Gutierrez, APRN - Anchorage

Oil Tax Advocates Spell Out Their Case Against Referendum

A handful of leading advocates for the new oil tax regime made the case for keeping the law to a friendly audience on Wednesday.

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Legislative Programs

Education Funding Activism

Gov. Sean Parnell has declared this year the education session the legislature, but if you are involved in schools in Anchorage you already know that education funding and policy are hot topics. On the next Hometown Alaska, host Charles Wohlforth will be joined by education activists to lead a community discussion on school funding and school choice. Should state funding increase, and should it be available to private and religious schools?

KSKA: Wednesday, 3/12, 2:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m.
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Alaska’s Natural Gas Pipeline Plan

Nobody ever said it would be easy to attract investment for one of the biggest construction projects on earth in the difficult conditions of Arctic Alaska, but we all know it happened once for the Trans-Alaska Pipeline. Can it happen again for a gas-line?

APRN: Tuesday, 3/4 at 10:00am

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Choosing Capital Projects

Tradition is an important part of politics. The Alaska Legislature has long followed the tradition of keeping the state’s capital budget process confidential until the last minute, and then releasing and voting on it in the final days of the session. Some people think that leads to bad decisions. We’ll talk about Anchorage’s recent tennis court controversies, and other impacts of how the legislature does its job. Is there a better way?

KSKA: Wednesday, 2/19, at 2:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m.
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Permitting, the Public Process, and House Bill 77

The Legislature is going to go back into session next week, and one of the big issues they’re expecting to grapple with is permitting. A controversial bill that would put restrictions on water rights and limit who can appeal state decisions has been criticized by Native groups and fishing interests, but the Department of Natural Resources says it’s needed to streamline the agency’s work.

APRN: Tuesday, 1/14 at 10:00am

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Governor Sean Parnell

There are always surprises when the guest on Talk of Alaska is the Governor. You just never know what kind of questions are going to come in when the audience is spread all over the state. Way beyond politics as usual, it’s the resumption of the long tradition of Alaska’s Governor appearing on the next Talk of Alaska.

APRN: Tuesday, 9/24 at 10:00am

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