Andrew Kitchenman, Alaska Public Media & KTOO - Juneau


State reports 13 new coronavirus cases

There were 13 new confirmed cases of the coronavirus in Alaska on Wednesday. That’s the most new cases for one day in six weeks, according to the state Department of Health and Social Services.

As the state reopens, health care and labor leaders express concern about worker safety

Lawmakers met on Wednesday to hear from health care providers and labor leaders about their concerns as workplaces in Alaska reopen.

Alaska lawmakers pass funding bill, finishing what they came to Juneau to do

The Senate overwhelmingly passed the bill to distribute over $1.1 billion in funding after the House adjourned

Complaint alleges Dunleavy violated ethics law by auctioning breakfast at Governor’s Mansion

State law prohibits the use of state facilities for partisan political purposes, except to discuss political strategy or use communications equipment, as long as there is no charge to the state.

Alaska House passes COVID-19 relief bill; Senate has one more day to approve

The Senate had already passed its own bill, but it now has to pass the House bill after the chamber adjourned.

Screened for virus in Capitol, lawmakers begin work on federal relief funding

In addition to spending, the Senate also considered changing rules to allow legislators to attend the session by video conference.

Alaska Legislature plans to reconvene in Juneau to pass federal relief after lawsuit

The Alaska Legislature is planning to reconvene next week to formally appropriate federal COVID-19 relief, following a lawsuit that seeks to block the state government’s current plan for the relief.

Alaska municipalities are eager for CARES Act relief, but concerned it won’t be enough

Municipalities could get half-a-billion dollars across the state, but there are still questions about how that can be spent, and whether it will be enough to cover the expected shortfall in other revenues.

Juneau man sues to block state’s $1.5 billion coronavirus aid plan, citing improper process

A retired carpenter and former University of Alaska regent is suing the Dunleavy administration, saying that the entire legislature must approve any state spending.

Key committee approves CARES Act relief after weeks long impasse

The biggest items were $586.6 million in direct municipal relief; $290 million in small business relief; and $100 million for the state’s fisheries.

Phase 2: Dunleavy announces plan to ease more restrictions, reopen bars, gyms

The state says it will also ease restrictions on intrastate travel, childcare facilities, and religious gatherings, among other plans.

Dentists say mandating COVID-19 tests for patients before procedures will ‘shut down’ dentistry

New state guidelines require patients to get a negative result from a coronavirus test within 48 hours of many dental procedures. But dentists say that's not feasible.

Governor, legislature spar over power to allocate $1 billion in CARES Act funding

The legislature's legal advisers argue that it's the legislature - not the governor's - job to allocate money.

Alaska’s chief medical officer pushes back against ‘herd immunity’ to control virus spread

State Chief Medical Officer Dr. Anne Zink said that if cases are allowed to grow unchecked, there's still a real risk of overwhelming Alaska's health care system.

Zink to Alaskans: ‘It’s no time to let your guard down.’

Zink said that the state must go 28 days without a community case to say it doesn’t have community spread. That’s far from happening.

Federal judge temporarily blocks aid to Alaska Native corporations

U.S. District Court Judge Amit Mehta issued an order finding that the tribes that sued to block the money from being paid to regional or village corporations were likely to win.

Scientists are struggling to understand COVID-19. As Alaska ramps up testing, what will they find out?

There’s a lot you can learn from testing data, besides just who has the disease. State researchers are working to understand where it is, what symptoms people have and how to prepare for future outbreaks.

Dunleavy says Alaska is in a better position than other states to reopen some businesses

Gov. Mike Dunleavy said on Wednesday that Alaska is in a better position than other states to reopen hair salons, nail shops and tattoo parlors.

Dunleavy details plan to spend $1.25 billion in federal aid

The plan includes $300 million of relief for small businesses, through existing state loan programs.

Dunleavy says restaurants and other retail businesses can reopen Friday

Gov. Mike Dunleavy announced on Tuesday restaurants and other retail businesses can begin offering more services on Friday, if they follow certain health guidelines.