Alaska Politics

Political news coverage from the Alaska Public Radio Network.

At DEC nominee Brune’s confirmation hearing, public testimony centered on Pebble ties

Opposition centered largely on Brune’s involvement with the proposed Pebble Mine. From 2011 to 2014 he served as the public affairs and government relations manager for Anglo American -- a company that backed the project until 2013.

Alaska aims to be first state receiving federal Medicaid funding as a block grant

Gov. Mike Dunleavy told President Donald Trump in a letter dated March 1 that top federal Medicaid official Seema Verma has urged Alaska to be the first state to receive Medicaid dollars as a block grant.

Homer Rep. Vance looks into Board of Fish vote on Cook Inlet meeting location

Homer House Rep. Sarah Vance announced Friday that she is launching an inquiry into the Alaska Board of Fisheries’ January vote to move its 2020 Upper Cook Inlet finfish meeting on the Kenai Peninsula back to Anchorage.

Court system inches forward with years-long upgrade to digital filing system

The Alaska Court System takes in and maintains hard copies of millions of pages of documents annually. It’s been trying to upgrade to an electronic, paper-on-demand system for years.

Sullivan discusses broad spectrum of topics with statewide listeners on Talk of Alaska

Republican Senator Dan Sullivan spoke on Talk of Alaska Tuesday morning about a broad range of topics, from national news stories in the headlines to regional issues facing the state. Listen now

Drilling foes in House launch bill to close ANWR

Opponents of development in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge filed a U.S. House bill Monday that would end the possibility of drilling in the refuge. The bill's prospects are dim in the Senate, but sponsors say they will press on.

Sullivan: Trump’s emergency wall money ‘probably legal’

Sen. Dan Sullivan says President Trump probably can rely on his emergency declaration to divert military construction money to the southern border. "I've been supportive of the president's request for robust funding for barriers, fences, the wall ... however you want to describe it." Sullivan said, though he is concerned that money for Alaska projects could be diverted.

At Anchorage hearing, Alaskans protest Dunleavy budget proposal, advocate for income tax

More than four dozen people testified against Gov. Mike Dunleavy's budget proposal at a March 2 Anchorage Caucus meeting, with many asking lawmakers to consider tapping into new revenue sources to fund state services.

Republican senators concerned with scale of proposed budget cuts

While Democratic senators have been most outspoken in their opposition to Republican Gov. Mike Dunleavy’s proposed budget cuts, it’s the Republicans who control the Senate majority. Several Republican senators on the Finance Committee have expressed concerns.

Alaska lawmakers weigh becoming only state to not fund medical education

Sixty-one percent of Alaska medical students who attend the WWAMI program return to Alaska. That’s higher than the national average of graduates who stay in state, but it’s lower than what Alaska lawmakers would like to see.

Dunleavy says money set aside for Alaska schools is subject to veto. Lawmakers disagree.

A new fight is erupting in Juneau about spending on Alaska's public schools. It centers on whether Gov. Mike Dunleavy has the power to veto money state lawmakers set aside for schools last year, for the upcoming school year – a practice called "forward funding."

Lawmakers urge Dunleavy to engage B.C. over transboundary mining

State lawmakers from both the House and Senate are urging the Dunleavy administration to continue the state’s engagement with British Columbia over pollution threats from transboundary mining.

Dunleavy responds to Alaska legislators’ push for protection from British Columbia mines

Gov. Mike Dunleavy has pledged to engage with British Columbia to protect Alaska’s natural resources and environment.

Critics say shutdown will doom Arctic projects in court

The Trump administration continued work on some Alaska oil development projects, despite the partial shutdown. Critics say that could invalidate the government's ultimate decisions to approve them.

Online ‘trolls’ spark support for Juneau’s furloughed federal workers

Despite assumptions from the outside, the longest government shutdown in U.S. history isn’t a vacation. Many federal workers are having a hard time paying bills.

Gov. Dunleavy faces political, legal obstacles to enacting far-reaching budget cuts

Governor Dunleavy's power to reduce Alaska's budget only goes so far – there are legal and political obstacles that stand between the governor and his goal of a balanced budget.

For $1B Radar, It’s Clear

The Missile Defense Agency today confirmed Clear Air Station as its preferred location for a new type of radar system, called Long Range Discrimination Radar. The selection of Clear helps solidify Alaska’s role as host to the ground-based mid-course missile defense system, designed primarily to shoot down warheads from North Korea. Download Audio:

State labor economist says state policies have affected recession length

Dan Robinson, research chief for the state’s labor department, told the Senate Finance Committee that uncertainty over the size and spending of state government are contributing to Alaska’s recession.

Alaska state ferry supporters come out in force

A long procession of Alaskans signed up to testify Tuesday over the future of the state’s ferry system.

Interior secretary nominee faces jabs over prior lobbying work

David Bernhardt has a lot of experience at the Interior Department. He has also represented the oil industry as a lawyer and lobbyist, and that drew a masked troll to his confirmation hearing Thursday.