The Department of Law has agreed to pay a contractor $50,000 as part of a settlement in a case that prompted Alaska Attorney General Kevin Clarkson to declare the state's local hire laws unconstitutional.

Clarkson issued an opinion on Oct. 3 writing: “Excluding nonresidents in order to economically benefit residents is not a legitimate state purpose under the federal Privileges and Immunities Clause or Alaska’s Equal Protection Clause.”

The current law applies largely to public works contracts and in areas where the state’s overall or regionally unemployment outstrips the rest of the country.

Clarkson said at the time a settlement had been reached with the firm two weeks ago. The Department of Law released details that included a $50,000 payout to contractor Colaska, whose subsidiary SECON is a fixture in Southeast.

The suit, filed on behalf of SECON by former Attorney General Michael Geraghty, asked the court to declare the law unconstitutional and order the state to no longer enforce the law.

In his opinion, Clarkson recommended the state not adhere to the law.

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