Alaska Politics

Political news coverage from the Alaska Public Radio Network.

Sullivan, Treadwell Address Variety of Topics At Anchorage Chamber of Commerce

Two of the Republican candidates vying for U.S. Senator Mark Begich’s job, presented their records and thoughts on a range of issues for the Anchorage Chamber of Commerce lunch crowd today. Download Audio

State court employees furloughed Christmas Eve to cost-cut

There’ll be no court in Juneau Thursday, Christmas Eve. In fact, all of the state’s 39 courthouses will be closed on Christmas Eve as a cost saving measure while the state tries to chip away at a multibillion dollar budget deficit. Download Audio

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

Wasilla Councilman Menard Target of Recall Effort

Wasilla city councilman Steve Menard is the target of a recall effort. The city clerk has approved an application for a recall election sponsored by an organization called the Conservative Patriots Group.

RUNNING: State House, District 23 Anchorage

Les Gara (D) is running unopposed for State House, District 23 Anchorage in the Alaska General Election on November...

In Continuing Fight, Public Broadcasting Funding Axed

Earlier this month, public broadcasting survived an effort in the House to slash its state funding by half. Now, a subcommittee in the Senate has axed the appropriation entirely.

House deadlock persists after Knopp votes for himself for speaker

Rep. Gary Knopp said on the House floor that he committed to being the 21st vote for a Republican nominee, but he didn’t say which one. He then voted for himself to become speaker.

Ketchikan Borough moves forward with commercial pot

Pot was the main topic of conversation during Monday’s meeting of the Ketchikan Gateway Borough Assembly, as it considered an ordinance to establish regulations for a commercial marijuana industry.

Gov Focused On Working With Legislators On Medicaid

With time winding down in the scheduled 90-day session, questions remain about whether or not legislators can agree on Gov. Bill Walker's proposal to expand and reform Medicaid. Download Audio

Walker appoints Kotzebue resident John Lincoln to vacant House District 40

Lincoln is the vice president responsible for managing lands for NANA Regional Corp. Listen now

Public testimony critical of large capital projects in Municipality of Anchorage

An open house held by the Anchorage Metropolitan Area Transportation Solutions, or AMATS, turned out public testimony that was almost unanimously against several large capital projects in the Municipality.

An unusually high number of black Alaskans are running for the Legislature — and most are Republicans

As long as Alaska has been a state, its legislature has always been overwhelmingly white. Even in the most diverse areas of the state, white Alaskans have almost always been elected to serve in Juneau. However, this year's general election has an unusually high number of black Alaskans on the ballot, and most of them are running as Republicans. Listen now

Sealaska Land-Selection Legislation Draws Opposition

Ed Schoenfeld, CoastAlaska – Juneau Fifty-eight members of Congress have signed a letter opposing Sealaska’s lands-selection legislation. The group of Democrats asked House committee leaders...

ANWR Hearing Spurs Fiery Remarks

As Congress struggles to find ways to bring down the national debt, Republicans in the House are offering a plan: increase oil and gas production to pay for repairs to America’s highways and jump-start the economy. Part of that includes opening up the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to development. A House Committee held two hearings Friday in Washington on drilling in Alaska. It was a familiar litany of arguments, but also had some fireworks.

Borough Mayor’s Communications To Redistricting Board Draws Criticism

A Matanuska Susitna Borough Assemblymember is criticizing the Borough mayor's communication with the state Redistricting Board. As KSKA's Ellen Lockyer reports, the matter made sparks fly at Tuesday nights 's Assembly meeting. Download Audio

Legislative Council to consider sexual harassment working group

Recent concerns about sexual harassment both outside Alaska and in Juneau have led lawmakers to consider making changes to the policy. Listen now

Gov. Parnell Addresses Budget, ‘Choose Respect’ and Education

Governor Parnell says he has three main priorities for the legislative session that started yesterday in Juneau: education, the gas line and the unfunded Pers/Ters pension fund liability. Parnell told APRN's Lori Townsend, the budget will be tight this year, but Alaskans have been through this before. Download Audio

Bill with $1B for icebreaker advances to Senate

The Arctic is one step closer to having a new U.S. icebreaker. The full Senate Appropriations committee this morning passed a bill that includes $1 billion for a heavy duty polar ship. The panel also approved millions in Defense and Coast Guard spending likely to go to Alaska, and to Kodiak in particular. Download Audio

Democrats Use Driver’s License Bill As Vehicle For Gay Rights Fight

A bill that would save military spouses the trouble of going to the DMV has triggered an unlikely battle over gay rights in the state legislature.

Educators, Lawmakers Rally Around Repeal of High School Exit Exam

With school districts working on their budgets and teacher layoffs looming, the potential change in the base student allocation is the most talked about portion of the governor’s education package. But part of the bill that has the most political momentum is a section that would repeal the high school exit exam that students need to graduate.