Alaska News Nightly: Wednesday, Jan. 17, 2018

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Top Republican, Democrat in Alaska Senate differ on income tax

Alaska Senate Republican leaders are pointing to rising oil prices as confirmation that their reticence to a proposed income tax was right. But the chamber’s leading Democrat says relying on oil gains would be shortsighted.

Andrew Kitchenman/Alaska Public Media-KTOO – Juneau

Lawmaker skips training amid dispute over harassment probe

An Alaska state lawmaker has skipped required training to prevent sexual and other harassment, after her calls for a third-party review of how allegations of inappropriate behavior by a former lawmaker were handled went unheeded.

The Associated Press

Rep. Young wants earmarks back, and he’s not alone

The U.S. House is pondering whether to reinstate the use of earmarks, where lawmakers direct federal money to specific projects, usually in their home districts. One of the biggest proponents at a committee hearing today was Alaska Congressman Don Young.

Liz Ruskin/Alaska Public Media – Washington, D.C.

State-ordered investigation following BP leak finds no additional problem wells

A state-ordered review of thousands of oil wells on the North Slope is complete, following a multi-day oil and gas leak at one of BP’s facilities last spring.

Elizabeth Harball/Alaska’s Energy Desk – Anchorage

Once thought settled, Alaska LNG eyes alternative gasline routes

Part of the federal permitting process for the Alaska liquefied natural gas project includes analyzing possible alternative routes, and some Alaska communities are asking the federal government to do just that.

Rashah McChesney/Alaska’s Energy Desk – Juneau

Calls for service plummet amid new strategy at Anchorage shelter

Officials in Anchorage say a new pilot program has radically cut down the emergency calls from the area surrounding the city’s main homeless shelter.

Zachariah Hughes/Alaska Public Media – Anchorage

Among 100-plus proposals, Sitka’s sac roe herring fishery a top issue

Sitka is packed to the gills with visitors to the Board of Fish meeting, where the board is reviewing over 100 finfish proposals. One of the major battles concerns the future of the Sitka sac roe herring fishery.

Emily Kwong/KCAW/pkg

Mat-Su Borough Assembly rejects agreement with state on air quality

At a sometimes tense meeting Tuesday night, the Matanuska-Susitna Borough Assembly voted down a resolution to increase efforts toward improving air quality.

Casey Grove/Alaska Public Media – Anchorage

State agencies provide stopgap timber for Southeast industry

The state just sold timber from its Southeast Alaska forest to the region’s largest mill as part of a multi-agency effort to keep the area’s logging industry alive. But some say it’s time to let it go.

Ed Schoenfeld/CoastAlaska – Juneau

World’s ‘tightest house’ on the market in Dillingham

A small Dillingham house that holds the unique title of the world’s “most airtight residential building” is on the market. The home is owned by Tom Marsik and his family. Marsik is an associate professor of Sustainable Energy at the UAF Bristol Bay Campus

Liam Wright/KDLG – Dillingham