Dave Donaldson, APRN - Juneau

ddonaldson (at) alaskapublic (dot) org | 907.586.6948 | About Dave

New Oil, Gas Bill Expected By End Of Next Week

The Senate is working on getting final plans in order to have a new oil and gas tax bill before the public by the end of next week. President Gary Stevens has said he has no intention of working with the tax-rewrite bill the governor introduced – and the House passed.

Senate Committee Approves More Money for Schools

The Senate Education Committee this morning approved an increase to the Basic Student Allocation – or BSA.

Oil and Gas Taxes Could Be Separated

The Parnell Administration is ready to talk about separating oil and gas taxes. Two years ago, the governor vetoed a bill that would have collected revenue from each product independently.

Rural School Litigation is Settled

Parents of students in rural Alaska schools have settled their litigation with the state over the level of state support required by the state constitution.

Crime Summit Taking Place In Juneau

The Crime Summit meeting in Juneau Wednesday gathered reports and ideas from agencies and outside organizations working in and around the state’s criminal justice system.

Study Describes North Slope Employment As A Roller Coaster

A new study describes employment on the North Slope as a roller coaster. In a report to the Senate Labor and Commerce Committee Tuesday, Jim Calvin, President of the McDowell Group, presented the results of a study ordered by the Senate to determine what factors influence jobs in the oil patch.

Senate Opens Crime Summit

The State Senate opened its Crime Summit Tuesday – a series of meetings bringing lawmakers up to date on statistics, trends and options available to the criminal justice system.

State Scholarship Bill Runs Into Opposition

A bill giving state money to private and religious schools ran into opposition Monday before the House Education committee. The bill sets up a mechanism providing state scholarships to private school students.

Parnell Waiting for Answers from Oil CEOs

Governor Parnell says he has not yet gotten answers from the C-E-O’s of Exxon, B-P and Conoco-Philips who met with him in Anchorage earlier this month. He revealed at his State of the State Speech last night that he had called each of them within the previous twenty four hours to tell them he expected them to make decisions on issues that were left hanging after their face-to-face meeting.

Governor Sets “Roadmap” for Gas Development

Governor Parnell last night set some expectations that he says will measure progress toward getting access to North Slope gas.

Senate Opens Hearing On Governor’s Scholarship Program

The Senate didn’t waste any time getting to work this year as the Finance Committee Wednesday opened its first hearing on the Governor’s bill dealing with the Scholarship program he has pushed since he first took office. The House approved it in the closing week of last year’s session.

Legislature Gets Underway In Juneau

The Legislature got underway in Juneau Tuesday afternoon with the usual pomp and circumstance, joined by some serious hopes for major accomplishments members can point to 90 days from now.

More Bills Added to the Session for This Year

Legislators have released the details of more new bills going before the legislature that convenes next week. The twenty eight new bills will join those left over from last year – and those introduced last week.

Michael Geraghty Named Attorney General

Anchorage Attorney Michael Geraghty has gotten the nod to be the state’s next attorney general. Governor Parnell today chose him as the replacement for Fairbanks attorney John Burns, who left the office January 2.

Legislators, Oil Companies Look For Ways To Extend TAPS Life

The governor has put the entire weight of his office behind House Bill 110. That’s the plan that is estimated to cut oil company taxes by about $2-Billion a year. In return, the administration hopes to see more industry emphasis on exploration and production that would get more North Slope oil to market.

New Bills Given to Legislature

Legislators today released thirty new bills that will be formally read into the record when the House and Senate convene later this month. They will be added to those already on the table from last year’s legislative session. Covering a wide range of topics, some promise to be controversial – and some might be welcomed by the public.

Hawker Says Oil Meeting A Good Beginning

One of those in attendance at the meeting was Anchorage Republican Mike Hawker. He says the event was a good beginning – not a policy meeting. He says the common message is that the state and the petroleum industry must be partners. He called the meeting a “mending of fences.”

Alaska: High on Toxic Releases

The U-S Environmental Protection Agency today reports that Alaska mining operations account for ninety percent of the toxic chemical releases in the four-state Pacific Northwest Region.

Parnell Sends Legislature His Budget Plan for Next Year

Governor Parnell today presented his versions of the operating and capital projects budgets that the legislature will work on during next year’s session.

National Group Supports ANWR Development

One of the largest bipartisan groups of state elected officials will campaign in favor of petroleum development in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.