Alaska News Nightly: Friday, Jan. 19, 2018

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What’s open, what’s closed if the government shuts down

The federal government could shut down tonight, at 8 p.m. Alaska time, if Congress can’t reach a spending agreement. We have Liz Ruskin, Alaska Public Media’s Washington Correspondent, to tell us what Alaskans can expect if the shut down occurs.

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

Interior aims to sign King Cove road deal Monday, official confirms

A top Interior official in Alaska has confirmed that on Monday, the Trump administration plans to sign a deal to build a controversial road through the Izembek National Wildlife Refuge.

Elizabeth Harball/Alaska’s Energy Desk – Anchorage

Anchorage mayor’s race is on, as incumbent and challenger file to run

The race to be Anchorage’s next mayor is on. Friday was the first official day of filing, and two major candidates — incumbent Ethan Berkowitz and Rebecca Logan, CEO of the Alaska Support Industry Alliance — both turned in their paperwork, kicking off the campaign ahead of this year’s municipal elections in April.

Zachariah Hughes/Alaska Public Media – Anchorage

In State of the State speech, governor strikes optimistic tone

Governor Walker gave the state of the state address last night. His main message was that Alaska can control its own destiny if it follows through on policies he’s proposed.

Andrew Kitchenman/KTOO-Alaska Public Media – Juneau

Diverse backgrounds among three on list for vacant state Senate seat

After whittling down a longer list of names through several rounds of voting, state Senate District E Republicans selected their short list to fill the seat Mike Dunleavy’s left vacant. They are: retiree Tom Braund, who says he worked in public safety for 30-plus years; sitting House member George Rauscher, who currently represents District 9; and Todd Smoldon, an Anchorage teacher.

Casey Grove/Alaska Public Media – Anchorage

Kusko 300 race day has arrived

Despite warm weather, open holes, and a new trail, the 39th annual Kuskokwim 300 Sled Dog Race is set to begin this evening. All eyes are on Bethel musher and three-time champion Pete Kaiser.

Christine Trudeau/KYUK – Bethel

AK: The man behind the plow

This week on AK: Mr. Plow. Every winter many of us take it for granted that when we wake up after a big snowfall, the roads will be clear and ready for the morning commute. But who do we have to thank for that?

Adelyn Baxter/KTOO – Juneau

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Casey Grove is the host of Alaska News Nightly and a general assignment reporter at Alaska Public Media with an emphasis on crime and courts. Reach him at

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