Alaska Politics

Political news coverage from the Alaska Public Radio Network.

Members of the Alaska Supreme Court today reversed the lower court’s decision and reinstated Dean Westlake as the winner of the Democratic primary in House District 40. (Photo by Rachel Waldholz/Alaska’s Energy Desk)

Supreme Court declares Dean Westlake winner of House District 40 Primary race

The Alaska Supreme Court has reinstated Dean Westlake as the winner of the Democratic primary in House District 40, which covers the North Slope and Northwest Arctic. Listen Now

Unalaska Has Loud Voice on Arctic Policy Commission

As the closest deepwater port to the Arctic, Unalaska is set to play a major role in the region’s economic development. Now, the city is positioning itself to influence Arctic politics, too.

Sitka tribal council pens FBI, alleging racism in police dept

Sitka’s tribal council wrote a letter last week to the Anchorage division of the FBI, regarding a tasing incident of a Native Alaska teenager in the Sitka jail last year. The letter alleges that prejudice exists within the Sitka Police Department and asks the FBI to consult the tribe during the investigation. Download Audio

Alaska Senate Debates State Operating Budget

The Alaska Senate is moving an operating budget that reduces state spending by $220 million over the previous year. Debate was ongoing at press time, but APRN’s Alexandra Gutierrez joins us for this update. Download Audio

LISTEN: There’s a lot on the table during the next legislative session. State government reporters break down what to look out for.

Next Tuesday, legislators return to Juneau to start the 2020 session. Will the Dunleavy administration and state lawmakers find common ground on how to pay for state services and a permanent fund dividend without draining the Constitutional Budget Reserve?

Redistricting Battle Goes To Trial In Fairbanks

The long battle over redistricting finally goes to trial next week in Fairbanks. The case involves proposed voter district maps that plaintiffs say are the result of politically motivated design, or gerrymandering.

State Rep. Nageak Taken From Capitol By Ambulance

A Barrow state representative was taken by ambulance from the state Capitol Wednesday. House Speaker Mike Chenault said Rep. Benjamin Nageak, a Democrat from Barrow, wasn't feeling well and given his medical history, it was thought better to have Nageak checked by medical personnel than to do nothing. Download Audio

Trump tariffs could jack up boat prices

The general manager of Bay Weld Boats in Homer says he’s seen in some cases 50 to 60 percent increases the purchasing prices of aluminum as aluminum users stocked up ahead of the tariff announcement. Listen now

Final vote count: Girdwood to pay for police, Marsett beats Schuster

A week and a half after ballots were cast, outstanding votes in Anchorage's municipal election have all been counted. Download Audio

Senate Bill Keeps Marijuana As A Controlled Substance

When the Alaska Senate votes on its primary marijuana bill later this week, the version they will consider treats marijuana as a controlled substance. Download Audio

Agreement Allows All Alaska Veterans Care At Tribal Clinics

A new agreement signed today between 14 Alaska Native tribal health programs and the department of Veterans Affairs will allow both Alaska Native and non-Native vets to receive health care services in tribal clinics in various parts of Alaska, so they won’t have to travel to Anchorage or Seattle to receive services.

Oil Tax Revenue Expected To Decline By $2 Billion

The State of Alaska is expecting to take in $2 billion less in oil taxes over the next fiscal year, according to the Department of Revenue's fall forecast. That means a 30 percent drop in the state's unrestricted general fund, the pool of money that the state's elected leaders control. Download Audio

One Company Bids In Sealed Bid Lease Sale

Only one company bid for a single exploration lease this morning at a state division of oil and gas sale. Bill Barron, division director said the exploration area is on state land on the Iniskin Peninsula area of southwest Cook Inlet near Lake Clark National Park and Preserve. He said the first exploration of the area started in 1902 near Oil Bay and continued through the 1950s. Download Audio

Obama’s Jobs Speech Receives Mixed Reviews

Alaska’s Congressional delegation is giving the President’s speech Thursday on jobs mixed reviews, mostly along party lines. President Obama laid out a plan he’s calling the American Jobs Act.

Bethel Judge Announces Retirement

The judge in Bethel who is being investigated for allegations of improper behavior has announced his retirement.

Governor declares emergency for Alaska Native languages

Gov. Walker’s order directs the state to use traditional place names on state signs and to promote indigenous languages in public education. Listen now

Federal Government Encourages Shellfish, Finfish Production

The Obama Administration announced its Marine Aquaculture policy today, making it official that the federal government will encourage the production of shellfish and finfish in U.S. waters.

Army officials say they’d like to keep airborne unit at JBER

Top Army officials gave their clearest statements yet that they might cancel or postpone the reduction of troops from Joint Base Elmendorf Richardson. Sen. Dan Sullivan calls the testimony important, but says efforts to preserve the 4-25th aren't a done deal. Download Audio

Write-In Moe, Gives Assembly Chair Run for Seat, Energizes Election

It was hit and miss for Assembly Candidates backed by conservative Anchorage Mayor Dan Sullivan in Tuesday's Municipal Elections. And the makeup of the Anchorage Assembly seems as though it will be shifting.

State of the Indian Nations Address Highlights Productive Year in Native American Policy

Photo and Story by Libby Casey, APRN – Washington DC The President of the country’s largest group representing Alaska Natives and American Indians says they...