Alaska Politics

Political news coverage from the Alaska Public Radio Network.

Slower Internet Likely to Persist in Rural Alaska

A major reform announced last month by the Federal Communications Commission promises to extend high-speed internet access to people in rural areas across the country.

Bill would shift 3% of state’s ANWR revenue to Native corporations

A bill pending in the U.S. House would reduce Alaska's share of revenues from oil drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge and give that money to Alaska Native corporations. Listen now
Insurance will give SEARHC members more flexibility in health care and generate revenue for the Native medical organization. (Photo by Lisa Phu/KTOO)

SEARHC to Receive $53 Million Settlement from Federal Government

The Southeast Alaska Regional Health Consortium will receive a $53 million settlement from Indian Health Service for about fifteen years of unpaid contract costs. Now SEARHC president and CEO Charles Clement hopes the federal agency will continue to pay its bills. Download Audio

Walker Poll Suggests Parnell Vulnerable … In A Two-Way Race

Independent candidate Bill Walker has released a poll suggesting he would be competitive against Gov. Sean Parnell, if Democrat Byron Mallott were no longer running. Download Audio

Two Rural Alaskans Named To Federal Subsistence Board

Two rural Alaskans have been named to the Federal Subsistence Board. There is currently just one rural member on the board that manages fish and wildlife for subsistence uses on federal public lands and waters.

North Dakota Legislator Dies in Alaska Car Crash

Friends and colleagues are responding to the death of North Dakota Senate Republican majority leader Bob Stenehjem, who died in a Kenai Peninsula highway rollover crash.

Two More Groups Join Lawsuit to Exclude Alaska from ‘Roadless Rule’

Two resource development groups have filed to join a lawsuit that would exclude Alaska national forests from the roadless rule.

Over $63 Million Worth Of Marijuana Sold In Washington State In 2014

Many Alaskans are keeping an eye on pot-sale rules in other states in the wake of last year’s legalization vote. The Washington State Liquor Control Board says that state’s retail marijuana industry sold more than $63 million worth of pot in 2014. Download Audio

Obama brings Native youth into spotlight

Politicians and captains of industry would give a small fortune for this invitation, but a 16-year-old Anchorage girl had an hour-long discussion yesterday with the President of the United States. The opportunity came as President Obama addressed the White House Tribal Nations Conference, an annual event that started with his administration. Download Audio

Navigating “The New Normal” Of Legal Marijuana

As the recreational use of marijuana becomes legal in Alaska today, the changing laws surrounding pot have already created a ripple effect in Sitka. Law enforcement is ironing out the details and businesses are catering to new clientele, with mixed opinions. Download Audio

Anchorage Officials Campaign to End Panhandling

Ellen Lockyer, KSKA – Anchorage Anchorage officials are starting a campaign to end panhandling in the city.  Mayor Dan Sullivan said Wednesday that...

Southeast Primary Results: 10 Candidates, 5 Races

Wrangell Representative Peggy Wilson knocked out two Ketchikan opponents to win the Republican nomination for the new House District 33. Ketchikan is the largest community in the district, which also includes Saxman, Coffman Cove, Thorne Bay and several other Prince of Wales Island communities.

Redistricting Board To Begin Work On New Map

Following a sharp rebuke from a superior court judge, the Alaska Redistricting Board has decided to start redrawing the state's political boundaries. The process has been going on for almost three years, and the lines can have a serious impact over who ends up in the legislature. Download Audio

Haines Candidate’s Ads May Have Broken State Rules

Tara Bicknell, KHNS – Haines The state’s campaign watchdog agency is considering a complaint alleging wrongdoing by supporters of Haines Republican Representative Bill ...

Report Says More Needs To Be Done To Make Offshore Drilling Safer

The former members of the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill Commission aren’t handing out any “A’s” as they grade the progress industry, Congress and the Interior Department have made since the accident two years ago.

Zinke signs land trade to allow road for King Cove

Alaska's congressional delegation ticked another item off its decades-old to-do list Monday: Interior Sec. Ryan Zinke signed a land swap agreement to allow a road in the Izembek National Wildlife Refuge for King Cove. Listen now

YK tribes demand special AVCP convention

Yukon-Kuskokwim tribes are demanding the Association of Village Council Presidents hold a special convention next month to discuss regional self-governance.

Criminal justice bill amended to reduce benefits to sex offenders

Senators have amended a bill that would overhaul Alaska’s criminal justice system, taking steps that makes it more difficult for those convicted of sex crimes from benefiting from the bill’s provisions. Download Audio

General Says Decision on JBER Cuts Not Final Without Arctic Plan

The general nominated to be the Army’s Chief of Staff suggested this morning that the plan to cut 2,600 Alaska soldiers isn’t final yet. But it’s hard to say whether the Army really plans to reconsider, or whether the general merely agreed to follow a procedure to ultimately reach a pre-determined end. Download Audio

Begich Questions Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac Bonuses

As police in New York routed the Occupy Wall Street encampment this morning, there are indications that some in Congress have taken notice of the movement. And that includes Alaska Senator Mark Senator Mark Begich is trying to block million-dollar bonuses to the executives at mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.