Alaska Politics

Political news coverage from the Alaska Public Radio Network.

Lawmakers strike compromise on scaling back conflict of interest restrictions

The Senate passed an earlier version of the bill, which would have repealed the conflict of interest provisions entirely. The House passed its own version. A conference committee agreed on the compromise Monday.

Here are the five biggest issues to be resolved on Alaska’s state budget

The budget conference committee is aiming to finish its work in time for the House and Senate to pass the budget by the scheduled end of the session on May 15.

Legislature passes bill allowing Alaska State Fair, ski areas to serve alcohol

Several business and venues across the state were caught off guard when the Alcoholic Beverage Control Board began denying recreational site license renewals last year, saying they did not meet the criteria in state law.

Sitka and Juneau elect new mayors in municipal elections

Communities across the state elected new mayors and enacted new measures in local municipal elections yesterday. Listen now

Big win for Murkowski: Public lands bill passes Senate

The U.S. Senate today passed a massive public lands bill, and to the delight of its sponsor, Sen. Lisa Murkowski, the vote was overwhelming.

Two veterans of Alaska politics land contract jobs with Gov. Dunleavy

Two veterans of Alaska politics have signed contracts to work with GOP Gov. Mike Dunleavy, and one of them is maintaining ownership of her...

Effort to ban liquor sales in Bethel fails

A ballot measure to impose a complete ban on alcohol sales in Bethel under the state's local option law has failed in a close vote, according to unofficial election results. Listen now

Murkowski’s public lands bill becomes law

President Trump has signed into law a massive public lands bill that Sen. Lisa Murkowski has spent years compiling and negotiating.

US Supreme Court rules in favor of Sturgeon, limiting NPS jurisdiction of state-owned rivers

The U.S. Supreme Court has unanimously ruled that the state controls rivers running through Alaska’s federal conservation lands.

Ocean Rangers log potential cruise pollution, face axe by lawmakers

Over the past two years Alaska’s on-board cruise ship inspectors called Ocean Rangers have documented a pattern of potentially serious water pollution. But there’s been no apparent action by regulators, and Gov. Dunleavy’s administration wants to get rid of the program.

Survey: Southeast business leaders pan Dunleavy budget priorities

A questionnaire sent to business leaders across Southeast Alaska found deep misgivings over the governor’s approach to balancing the budget.

Alaska lawmakers are trying to fight crime by toughening prison sentences. Not everyone agrees that will work.

People who work with released prisoners say the best way to combat crime is enhancing access to programs that target mental health problems and drug addiction -- not increasing prison terms.

Schools push back on proposed midyear budget cut

While school districts may have already spent money they counted on the state sending them later, the state’s new budget director says they shouldn’t have.

Alaska’s US senators veer apart on shutdown votes

Two competing bills to end the partial government shutdown both fizzled. Alaska's senators took different tacks.

Rep. Young sponsors bill to bring back deported vets

The "Repatriate Our Patriots" bill would allow honorably discharged veterans to return to the U.S. as permanent residents and apply for citizenship.

Gov. Dunleavy opens door to megaprojects with order

Gov. Mike Dunleavy rescinded seven administrative orders last week enacted by his predecessor, Bill Walker. They include an order that halted state spending on six infrastructure projects.

Here’s what you need to know before voting in the August primary

Voting may seem simple enough. You head to your precinct, fill out your ballot and feed it through a machine, but the scenarios election workers face at the polls can get a lot more complicated. Alaska Public Media headed to a poll worker training in Anchorage to learn the ins and outs of voting in Alaska ahead of the August primary. Listen now

Murkowski votes to block Trump’s emergency; Sullivan votes opposite

Alaska's U.S. senators split on the vote Thursday to block President Trump's declaration of an emergency. If Trump prevails with a veto, Alaska could lose military construction projects as money is diverted to build a wall on the southern border.

Bill would extend moratorium on state reimbursing municipalities for school bonds

The state stopped covering 60%-70% of new school bonds beginning in 2015. This moratorium is scheduled to end next year; North Pole Republican Rep. Tammie Wilson has sponsored a bill to keep the moratorium in place.

Kodiak goat dairy faces an uncertain future amid proposed budget cuts

Governor Dunleavy’s proposed budget would eliminate the state’s only dairy inspector, making it nearly impossible for up-and-coming dairies like Kodiak Baptist Mission’s Heritage Farms to sell milk commercially.