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Articles written by James Brooks

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 By James Brooks    News    September 28, 2022 

Walker, Gara say new revenues needed to pay for public services, projects

In a Sept. 21 candidate forum hosted in Fairbanks by the Alaska Chamber of Commerce, Democratic governor candidate Les Gara and independent candidate Bill Walker said that if elected they would seek new state revenue to pay for a variety of projects... Full story

 

Not all candidates for governor are showing up at debates

Democratic candidate for governor Les Gara and independent candidate former governor Bill Walker said that the best candidate is the one who shows up for public forums. The two had the stage to themselves at a Sept. 7 event sponsored by the Kenai...

 

Gubernatorial candidate was asked to resign as Kenai borough mayor over harassment complaint

Kenai Peninsula Borough Mayor Charlie Pierce, one of four candidates for Alaska governor, was asked to resign as mayor after an investigation determined a harassment complaint against him was credible. Pierce, a Republican, announced on Aug. 26 that...

 
 By James Brooks    News    September 7, 2022

Libertarian candidate makes the final four for U.S. House Nov. 8 election

In Chris Bye’s preferred campaign photo, the Libertarian U.S. House candidate is ripping open his dress shirt to reveal a T-shirt that says, “Do Good Recklessly.” After fourth-place finisher Republican Tara Sweeney abruptly withdrew from...

 
 By James Brooks    News    August 31, 2022

Illegal firing lawsuit against Dunleavy will extend into 2023

A legal dispute that began when Gov. Mike Dunleavy took office in 2018 will not be resolved before this year’s gubernatorial election. Last week, a federal judge set a 2023 timeline for a trial to determine financial damages in a case involving...

 
 By James Brooks    News    August 31, 2022

High fuel costs particularly painful in rural Alaska towns

Throughout rural Alaska, the summer’s fuel barges arrived with loads of diesel, heating fuel and a big bill for cities and boroughs. Away from Alaska’s road system and along western and northern coasts that freeze in winter, fuel arrives by...

 
 By James Brooks    News    August 24, 2022

Democrat Peltola leads in voting for U.S. House, but Palin close

Democrat Mary Peltola is leading Alaska's special election for U.S. House, but the state's new ranked-choice voting system may leave Republican candidate and former governor Sarah Palin the ultimate...

 
 By James Brooks    News    August 17, 2022

Group of conservative Alaskans organize in support of constitutional rewrite

A group of conservative Alaskans, headed by a leading member of the Alaska Republican Party, has formed a new campaign organization intended to encourage Alaskans to call a constitutional convention and allow sweeping changes in the way Alaska runs...

 
 By James Brooks    News    August 17, 2022

Investigation of Permanent Fund firing costs more money

A committee of the Alaska Legislature voted unanimously on Aug. 10 to spend an additional $50,000 on its investigation into the firing of Alaska Permanent Fund Corp. director Angela Rodell, bringing the investigation’s total budget to $150,000....

 
 By James Brooks    News    August 10, 2022

Permanent Fund lost money for first time since 2012

For the first time in a decade, the Alaska Permanent Fund Corp., source of more than half of Alaska’s general-purpose state revenue, posted negative investment returns for an entire fiscal year. As of June 30, the last day of the just-ended fiscal...

 
 By James Brooks    News    August 3, 2022

State subsidy will provide more help with high-cost rural electric bills

Up to 82,000 rural Alaskans will see lower electric bills because of legislation signed into law last month. Senate Bill 243, passed by the Legislature this spring, raises the maximum subsidy under the state’s Power Cost Equalization program,...

 
 By James Brooks    News    August 3, 2022

GCI continues to carry One America News as bigger carriers drop the channel

Alaska cable company GCI has no immediate plans to drop the right-wing TV channel One America News, a spokesperson said July 27. Verizon, the last remaining major carrier to carry the channel, stopped airing the channel last Saturday. That action fol...

 
 By James Brooks    News    July 27, 2022

Almost 1 in 5 state jobs are vacant as hiring struggle gets worse

The top employees of the Alaska Permanent Fund Corp. are some of the highest-paid public workers in Alaska, but with wages rising across the country and employers competing for skilled labor, even the $80 billion Permanent Fund is struggling to keep...

 
 By James Brooks    News    July 27, 2022

State sues federal government over polluted lands transferred to Native corporations

The state has sued the U.S. Department of the Interior in an attempt to hold the federal government responsible for the identification of thousands of polluted sites on land given to Alaska Native corporations. A complete inventory is a first step...

 
 By James Brooks    News    July 27, 2022

Dunleavy ahead of Walker in fundraising in final weeks before primary

Incumbent Gov. Mike Dunleavy has raised more money than any other candidate in this year’s Alaska governor’s race over the past five months and is heading toward the Aug. 16 primary election with more cash in his campaign war chest than his chall...

 
 By James Brooks    News    July 20, 2022

Legislature works on new policy governing use of social media

With two of its members facing lawsuits for their social media practices, the Alaska Legislature is contemplating new advice and policies to cover its 60 members. The joint House-Senate Legislative Council unveiled its first draft of a new policy...

 
 By James Brooks    News    July 13, 2022

Trump calls Murkowski 'by far the worst' at Anchorage rally

In front of more than 5,000 cheering supporters in Anchorage on Saturday, former President Donald Trump fulfilled a year-old promise to campaign in Alaska against incumbent U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski,...

 
 By James Brooks    News    July 13, 2022

State allows distilleries to sell premixed drinks in small kegs to bars, restaurants

Alaska’s state alcohol regulator is declining to stop distilleries from selling kegs of premixed cocktails despite a warning by federal regulators, who have concluded that the process is illegal. The Alaska Alcohol Control Board has rescinded an...

 
 By James Brooks    News    July 6, 2022

Anchorage legislative candidate faces trial on felony charges

If all goes as Lisa Simpson expects, she will win the August primary for an Anchorage state House seat and be cleared of several felonies about the same time. Simpson, a former aide to Anchorage Rep. Gabrielle LeDoux, is facing trial in August...

 
 By James Brooks    News    June 29, 2022

Court considers sovereign immunity for tribal health care corporations

The Alaska Supreme Court is considering a case that could redefine the extent of legal protection for corporations — including health care consortiums — jointly operated by Alaska Native tribes. The verdict could have implications across the stat...

 

Advocates question high ballot rejection rate among Native voters

As election officials count votes in Alaska’s first-ever statewide election by mail, they have rejected thousands of submitted ballots, including one in six from a Western Alaska state House district, causing concern from observers who say the...

 
 By James Brooks    News    June 15, 2022

Court considers whether Alaska lawmakers can ban people from their Facebook page

An Anchorage Superior Court judge is considering when and if it is legal for a state legislator to ban a constituent from the lawmaker’s legislative Facebook page. On June 8, Judge Thomas Matthews heard oral arguments in a lawsuit brought by an Eag...

 
 By James Brooks    News    June 1, 2022

Legislature fails to adopt limits on campaign donations

The Alaska Legislature failed to pass new restrictions on financial donations to candidates for state office. Because a federal court threw out Alaska’s old limits, the Legislature’s failure means candidates may accept unlimited amounts of money...

 
 By James Brooks    News    June 1, 2022

At least 25% of Legislature not seeking reelection or running for other office

Months before Alaska’s state elections, the Legislature is set for major turnover. At least 17 of the Legislature’s 60 members will be in a new position or out of office entirely by next January — and that doesn’t count anyone who loses their...

 

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