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ALASKA POLITICS

State

Governor Walker vetoes House Bill 132

State

Governor cancels joint session for confirmation votes

State

Medicaid expansion supporters grow more vocal as session comes to a close

State

Governor orders joint session: Another showdown between executive, legislative branches

State

New emergency OCS regulations, legislation eases Native adoption process

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  • State

    Governor Walker vetoes House Bill 132

    by KTVA CBS 11 News on Apr 17, 16:47

    Gov. Bill Walker has vetoed a bill constricting the authority of the Alaska Gasline Development Corporation in developing a gas line separate from the Alaska Liquified Natural Gas line. Walker had announced his plans to veto House Bill 132 if it reached his desk in a letter to lawmakers April 10, saying it ”significantly reduces Alaska’s […]

  • State

    Governor cancels joint session for confirmation votes

    by KTVA CBS 11 News on Apr 17, 10:22

    Gov. Bill Walker has cancelled his order to gather the House and Senate for a joint session to vote on his appointments after legislative leadership promised that lawmakers would weigh in on the appointments Sunday. “I just wrapped up a meeting with House Speaker Mike Chenault and Senate President Kevin Meyer,” Walker said in a […]

  • State

    Medicaid expansion supporters grow more vocal as session comes to a close

    by Rhonda McBride on Apr 17, 7:57

    The pressure on lawmakers to pass Gov. Bill Walker’s Medicaid expansion bill continues to grow as church coalitions ask their congregations to write letters and attend rallies in support. One is planned at Wasilla Lake at noon on Friday at Newcomb Park. Two were held on Thursday, one in Anchorage and another on the Capitol […]

  • State

    Governor orders joint session: Another showdown between executive, legislative branches

    by Rhonda McBride on Apr 17, 7:36

    The Legislature will convene in joint session at 10 a.m. Friday morning at the call of Gov. Bill Walker. He wants them to vote on his cabinet and board appointments. Republican Majority leaders had originally scheduled the confirmation vote for Friday afternoon, but suddenly postponed it in the middle of a battle with the governor […]

  • State

    New emergency OCS regulations, legislation eases Native adoption process

    by KTVA CBS 11 News on Apr 16, 17:34

    Through emergency regulations, the governor has set in motion a new policy to streamline adoptions for Alaska Native children. Gov. Bill Walker says the emergency regulations for the Office of Children’s Services will make it more likely that Native foster children will be adopted by Native or American Indian families. The Indian Child Welfare Act […]

  • State

    Drama over confirmation vote: Clash between governor and Legislature not unprecedented

    by Rhonda McBride on Apr 15, 17:34

    Updated Thursday, April 16 at 9 a.m. Gov. Bill Walker took an extraordinary step on Wednesday. He issued an executive order calling the Legislature in joint session to vote on his cabinet and board appointments. The governor has scheduled Friday morning for the vote. Legislative leaders had originally set aside Friday afternoon, but postponed it. […]

  • State

    House passes bill to create Alaska marijuana control board with request for reconsideration

    by Associated Press on Apr 14, 23:03

    The Alaska House has passed a bill that would create a new board to regulate marijuana. The House on Tuesday passed the governor’s bill to create a marijuana board that would share staff and resources with the state alcohol board. When voters approved limited recreational marijuana in November, they directed either the alcohol board or […]

  • State

    Senate Republican Majority not ready to vote on Medicaid expansion

    by Rhonda McBride on Apr 14, 21:57

    Senate Republican Majority leaders on Tuesday sounded a lot like they were laying the groundwork to hold up a vote on House Bill 148, a Medicaid expansion and reform measure the governor introduced at their request. Sen. John Coghill, the Senate Majority leader, said he continues have doubts about whether the necessary reform would take […]

  • State

    Bill to allow pharmacists to administer vaccines advances

    by Associated Press on Apr 14, 7:19

    The Alaska Senate has passed legislation that would allow pharmacists to administer vaccines more easily. Sen. Cathy Giessel sponsored the bill that passed on Monday, which would allow pharmacists to administer vaccines without oversight from a doctor or nurse practitioner. Pharmacists would be required to log the vaccines they administer in a statewide database. Giessel […]

  • State

    Senate passes bill to eliminate film tax credit program

    by Associated Press on Apr 13, 15:23

    The state Senate has passed a bill eliminating a state film tax credit program. Sen. Bill Stoltze sponsored the bill that passed Monday, which would eliminate the already-shuttered program. The program allowed film companies to apply for the credits, and then sell them to companies with a larger tax burden in the state. It was […]

  • State

    House panel advances bill to nix state employee pay raises

    by Associated Press on Apr 13, 10:58

    The House Finance Committee has advanced legislation that would deny pay raises for certain state employees not covered by labor union agreements. The bill advanced 6-4 on Monday, with Republican Rep. Cathy Munoz and Democratic Reps. Bryce Edgmon, Les Gara and David Guttenberg voting no. HB 176 was introduced as the Senate Finance Committee was […]

  • State

    Rally at Capitol in Juneau draws attention to education funding

    by Rhonda McBride on Apr 12, 16:56

    A crowd of about 500 people tried to breach the invisible bubble that surrounds the State Capitol during the legislative session. Parents, with children in tow, as well as longtime education advocates, gathered in the courtyard across from the Capitol on a blustery Saturday afternoon. Their array of bright colored jackets stood out against the […]

  • State

    Education funding in Alaska part of the legislative end game

    by Rhonda McBride on Apr 11, 14:03

    With one week left to go in the 90-day session, education funding is shaping up to be one of the big battles. Though disappointed with the governor’s plans to trim $32 million in forward funding for schools, education advocates have been relatively quiet.  They were hoping there would be no further cuts. But last week, […]

  • State

    Alaska Senate approves $1.5B budget, now heads to House

    by Associated Press on Apr 11, 13:01

    The Alaska Senate has approved a $1.5 billion capital budget, most of which is from federal funds. Senators voted 18-2 in favor of the budget on Saturday. The budget is significantly smaller compared to recent years. It includes $43 million for a new school in Kivalina. The money is intended to satisfy a settlement agreement […]

  • State

    Governor announces plans to veto pipeline bill

    by Rhonda McBride on Apr 10, 22:03

    An ugly fight between Gov. Bill Walker and the Republican majority is about to escalate. The governor sent a letter to each lawmaker on Friday explaining the reasons he plans to veto a pipeline bill and asked them not to support a veto override. When House Bill 132 was first introduced, Walker held a news […]

  • State

    Senate panel includes Kivalina school money in budget

    by Associated Press on Apr 10, 10:17

    The Senate Finance Committee has advanced its rewrite of the state capital budget, including $43 million for a new school in Kivalina. The appropriation is meant to satisfy the state’s obligation under a 2011 settlement in a lawsuit that alleged inequities in funding for rural public schools. The last project on the settlement list is […]

  • State

    Polls show support for governor and Medicaid expansion

    by Rhonda McBride on Apr 10, 8:31

    With the meter set to expire soon on the Legislature’s 90-day session, the big question around the state capitol: Is there enough time left to get a Medicaid expansion and reform bill passed? Or, will lawmakers be forced to go into overtime to finish work on a bill that seems to have popular support. A […]

  • State

    House passes bill to remove some records from online system

    by Associated Press on Apr 09, 15:21

    The Alaska House has again passed legislation calling for removing certain criminal case records from the state’s online court records system. Reconsideration notice was served after Wednesday’s 34-5 House vote. Reconsideration was taken up Thursday, and HB 11 passed 32-4. It now goes to the Senate. The bill, from Rep. Tammie Wilson, says the court […]

  • State

    Bill to eliminate time change stalls in House committee

    by Associated Press on Apr 09, 13:01

    A bill to move Alaska off daylight saving time likely won’t get a vote in the House this session. Rep. Bob Lynn, chair of the House State Affairs Committee, appointed a subcommittee to work on the bill after taking public testimony on Thursday during which business representatives opposed the bill. Reps. Wes Keller, Liz Vazquez […]

  • State

    House passes penny-a-gallon tax for refined fuels

    by Rhonda McBride on Apr 09, 9:53

    After lengthy debate, the House narrowly passed a bill that would impose a penny-a-gallon tax on refined fuels. There’s been considerable argument about whether this is truly a tax. Some say it’s a surcharge or a fee. But whatever you call it, the bottom line is Alaskans will pay more for gasoline and home heating […]