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September 27, 2021

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SP 2.0 – Captain Zero Spins Again!

The gavels were banged and lawmakers sent home. The governor, hoping no one does their homework, put out his spin. House leadership would be held back a grade if they were in school instead of Juneau. The governor? Well, he’d be expelled for disruptive behavior, bullying, not playing well with others and throwing the state championships to the opposing team. Sorry, he makes me miss Palin so bad I’m using basketball analogies! Yikes.

Here’s Captain Zero’s self grading with a bit of reality:

Performance Scholarships Funded

The high school graduating class of 2011 is now the first eligible to earn and receive performance scholarships ranging from $2,379 to $4,755 for Alaska post-secondary education and job training. Funding for the Alaska Performance Scholarship is included in the FY 2012 budget. The Legislature also set aside $400 million for a sustainable funding mechanism for the Alaska Performance Scholarship. The governor’s bill establishing the scholarship fund passed the House unanimously and is pending action in the Senate in 2012.

ACTUALLY, the governor fought an amendment to have more Alaskan students covered. If you’re a child prodigy living in rural Alaska, chances are you won’t have AP classes available. There are only so many resources in smaller schools. The governor’s bill shuts out rural students. This is a lawsuit waiting to happen and EXACTLY the reason it’s still sitting in the Senate.

Governor, why do you hate rural Alaskans?

Safe Homes/Strong Families

Governor Parnell’s legislation strengthening laws related to the sexual exploitation of children and stalking received unanimous support in both houses.

The governor continues to work toward the goal of providing State Trooper or Village Public Safety Officer (VPSO) presence in every community that requests it. All 15 VPSO positions requested in the governor’s budget were funded. With the added positions, Alaska will have more than 100 VPSOs stationed in rural Alaska communities.

The Legislature also approved year two of the governor’s initiative to eliminate domestic violence and sexual assault in Alaska. The budget includes over $8 million for prevention, investigation, enforcement, and services to victims and survivors.

Wow! ALL FIFTEEN? Is that all of the VPSOs we needed? NOT BY A LONG SHOT! If you live in rural Alaska and are raped, chances are the DNA evidence will be gone before a law enforcement officer can collect. How’s that for prosecutions? Not good. How’s that for perpetrators and re-offenders? Dandy! How do you explain to the villages without VPSOs that their safety isn’t as important when we have $BILLIONS in reserve? Whoopie frickin’ doo! $8 million? Really? You’re spending more than that on a failing port project in Anchorage.

Comprehensive Energy Package Enacted

Governor Parnell’s comprehensive energy package proposed, which includes $65.7 million and statutory authorization for the Susitna Hydro Electric Project, was approved by the Legislature and added to.

The energy package includes funding for weatherization and home energy rebate programs to help Alaskans make their homes more energy efficient; Renewable Energy Fund grants targeted to projects in areas with the highest energy costs in the state; hydroelectric projects and generation and transmission line projects; funding for the Power Cost Equalization Program; and funds for rural power system upgrades and bulk fuel storage to bring down the cost of diesel power generation.

We’ll see if you follow through on your not-so-veiled threat to punish lawmakers (and their constituents) for not supporting HB110-your misguided $2 billion annual bailout for the most profitable transnational corporations in the history of civilization. We’re waiting and watching your veto pen. Toady Bill Stoltze already cut weatherization by $45 Million. Did you put him up to that?

Transportation/Infrastructure

The Legislature approved the governor’s request for funding of major transportation infrastructure in the state, such as roads to resources, including the road to Umiat, and access to the Ambler mining district. And, the Legislature also funded the governor’s request for major port projects including Anchorage, Point Mackenzie, and Skagway.

Do we have to have some sort of private development to put a road in? Multinational mining corporations must love you.

Economic Development

Governor Parnell’s major economic development legislation that would help bring a jack-up rig to Cook Inlet and improve the Skagway Ore Terminal received unanimous support. The legislation allows the Alaska Industrial Development and Export Authority to invest in a corporation or LLC, which allows greater flexibility in its investment opportunities.

The governor also won approval of legislation adding acreage to more than double the size of the Southeast State Forest, creating more jobs in the timber industry.

Additionally, Alaska’s tourism marketing efforts will continue drawing visitors and bringing revenue to Alaska’s small and mid-sized businesses.

Translation: oil is yummy and we don’t mind paying expenses for the most lucrative corporations on the planet. Also, cutting down the prime big trees in Southeast gives me wood. Also, I cut the citizen-passed cruise ship tax and now don’t have much funding for tourism marketing.

Saving for the Future

The governor commended the Legislature for joining him in his call to save at least $2.5 billion in surplus revenue including $400 million for the Alaska Performance Scholarship fund; $200 million for the Alaska Gasline Development Project; and Representative Stoltze’s idea to apply $200 million to buy down debt costs.

But why, oh why do we have money in the bank to begin with? ACES. Yep, the law the governor and House GOP wanted to roll back. Before you go honkin’ your hooter about Stoltze, he cut the Senate’s $1 billion savings by $900 million. No, really.

Work Remains to Increase Oil Production

Governor Parnell’s bill to increase oil production and reform oil taxes passed the House of Representatives with in-depth, comprehensive debate and an open public process. Lower oil taxes will make Alaska more competitive and attract billions of dollars in new investment, creating thousands of new jobs and ensuring the continued economic and operational viability of the pipeline. This session, the governor announced a new goal for Alaska of one million barrels of oil production per day through the Trans Alaska Pipeline System within 10 years.

“We still have work to do to increase oil production and I remain committed to this goal while lessening our nation’s dependence on foreign oil,” Governor Parnell said.

REALITY: Sean Parnell doesn’t read his own data and he hides reports that tell him our system for auditing oil revenue is broken. I’m hoping he has an appropriation for knee pads. BTW, our nation imports far more oil from Canada and Mexico than other nations. I know with all that hockey and healthcare they may seem like terrorists, but I like them as neighbors. It couldn’t be more clear who Sean Parnell works for and it’s not Alaska.

Wow, no mention of the Coastal Zone Management flop. Shocking! I can’t believe it wasn’t mentioned in the spin release. See, the house and governor have decided it’s more important to have the federal government run Alaska then to give consideration to local officials who live in our coastal communities. How dare the governor and his brood of State’s-Rights-spewing crooks give Alaskan control away to the federal government. Why would they do that? Because it gets pesky locals out of the way for resource developers who can buy off scientists with more discretion and less money than local knowledge which is rooted in thousands of years of survival and experience and is not for sale.

Prepare for another special session. That’s what it will take to ensure Alaskans have a say in coastal development. HB106, a coastal zone management bill would have extended the termination date of the Alaska Coastal Management Program thus keeping control in Alaskans hands and not the federal government.

When Alaskans figure out that industry and Governor Parnell were lobbying the house to defeat that bill there will be hell to pay. Parnell will have no choice but to put his tail between his legs and call a special session. Alaska coastal management should not be a partisan issue. Alaskans should be calling the shots-not the Feds.

The House Representatives who are now on the record to prefer Federal control over Alaskan control are: House Speaker Chenault, Costello, Feige, Johnansen, Johnson (who signed the bill out of conference committee but voted against it on the floor), Keller, Lynn, Millett, Neuman, Olson, Pruitt, Saddler, Stoltze, Thompson, and Tammy Wilson. Why do they hate Alaskans? Why would they hand control over to the president? Any president.

I’d call the whole crew corporate whores, but I have too much respect for sex workers — they are more honest and peddle what is theirs, not ours.

Comments

comments

Comments
21 Responses to “SP 2.0 – Captain Zero Spins Again!”
  1. AnnStrongheart says:

    @Leenie17

    I love it that the cookie story will forever live in history. I retell it often b/c it still upsets me the disrespect that occurred with the religious coated cookies that winter!

  2. Joe 12-pack says:

    Funny how they keep saying that with a roll-back of ACES that we’ll be able to increase oil production.

    Remember the old ad campaign “no decline after ’99”? (Google will find a little bit about it)

    That was over a decade ago when daily production was just dropping below 1M barrels/day. Hmmm, how’d that go?

    Oil production has been declining for a long time even before ACES came along. So, if we somehow go back to the same tax regime when production was ALREADY declining, we’ll now somehow get a different result?

    Thank you AK Senate!

  3. leenie17 says:

    “Governor, why do you hate rural Alaskans?”

    Is there something in the Governor’s oath about doing everything possible to keep the rural Alaskans as poor, hungy, unemployed and uneducated as possible?

    Except for cookies. There are plenty of cookies for the villages! (As long as they come with religious pamphlets, of course!)

  4. Mo says:

    We don’t seem to have an open thread today, so I’m stashing this here:

    “Exports from Alaska achieve record
    The value of exports from Alaska was higher in 2010 than ever before.

    Governor parnell says exports for the year totaled 4-point-2 billion dollars, an increase of almost 27-percent from the year before.

    Nearly half of the total, 1-point-8 billion, was from seafood exports, partly due to the best salmon harvest in decades. Japan and China bought the largest share of Alaska seafood.

    The value of mineral exports was 1-point-3 billion dollars, thanks to a spike in the price of zinc from the Red Dog mine near Kotzebue, the world’s largest zinc mine.

    Energy exports, including liquefied natural gas, coal, and refined petroleum, also increased in 2010, but accounted for one-tenth of the total value of Alaska exports.”
    (KENI Radio – Anchorage)

    Remind me again why we need to jeopardize the world’s largest salmon fishery with the Pebble Mine? Chuitna coal? Bristol Bay and the Kensington gold mine?

    And why are our villages starving for salmon if there was a record harvest? All that pollock bycatch?

  5. Of all of Parnell’s blunders this last session, it’s the failure to act on coastal management that will hurt Alaskans the most. Apart from the hypocrisy – this is a governor who has mounted many stupid lawsuits against the federal government over control of Alaska resources – actions taken without a state coastal management law are irrevocable. Even 10-12 months carries grave risk.

    Increasingly, Parnell seems to be the lapdog of Big Oil.

  6. renee99503 says:

    What am I missing with this scholarship program. A 2.5 GPA isn’t exactly “scholarship”, nor “performance”.

    • Thomas says:

      @renee: That really depends on the child’s circumstances, doesn’t it now? A kid growing up in abject poverty, abuse, neglect and little in the way of resources still managing to pull a 2.5 is way more impressive than the 4.0 I got in a supportive environment & an affluent school, without having to go to school on an empty stomach nor go to sleep to the sounds of gunshot or of my dad beating my mom. Numbers so don’t tell the whole story when it comes to assessing what a pupil is capable of.

      • Valley_Independent says:

        True, but one of the challenges some Alaskan students face when they get to college is that they are totally ill-prepared, which leads to failure, which certainly doesn’t help them succeed or build self-esteem. BHT noted correctly that we need to work on the schools to make sure that kids are prepared for success in life, whether that be through a college education or learning a trade some other way.

  7. Dagian says:

    He really is her equally evil lost twin, isn’t he?

    Okay–indulge me. The Tea Party Princess’s Bristol Palin and her “corrective surgery”. A surgeon weighs in:

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/reliable-source/post/oral-surgeon-weighs-in-on-bristol-palins-jaw-surgery/2011/05/11/AFbqzorG_blog.html

    Evidently the lying apple doesn’t roll far away from its tree!

    Of course, I am still amused by people who go on and on about her right to privacy when she (Bristol) is finding new ways to be in the public eye. A reality t.v. series, where she and her son live with two (black) men? You can hear the roar from the Whites-only geezer crowd within the tea party. You know they’re there and you know they’re gonna be upset!

    • beth says:

      Ahhh, but now Mama Griz and her fellow Rwingers/GOPers/Tea Baggers can point to Bristol’s ‘living arrangements’ and say, “See?; We like dar… errr… nig… errr… black people! Good heavens — of course we do. Why, we even let our daugher and grandson live with a couple of them.” This has *much* more gravitas, don’cha know, than the old: “I’m not racist — some of my friends are even dar… errr… nig… errr… black!” You bet’cha. beth.

  8. BHT says:

    You’re kind of misrepresenting the performance scholarship program. There’s no requirement for AP classes. There is a requirement that students pretty much (there’s some flexibility, but not much) take 4 years each of math, English, social studies, and science. For kids in some rural schools, that will be a problem. But, the problem is with the schools (can most of you imagine a school where there aren’t 4 years of those classes available for students??), not the scholarship requirements.

    Watering down the scholarship requirements so kids can qualify without 4 years of classes isn’t the answer – unprepared kids have a hard time succeeding when they do get to college. Increasing funding to schools is part of the answer, and that’s where Parnell fell down on the job. Saying “we aren’t getting the results we expect from schools, so we’ll cut funding and hope they do better” makes no sense. While the legislature did pass a (very small, and one-time-only) increase to school funding, that was due to a Senate bill – the Gov’s bill provided no increase to school funding.

  9. Alaska Pi says:

    We do ourselves no favors in hanging onto the Cap’n Zero moniker

    I’ve renamed SP2, Captain Torpedo.

    The Cap’n Zero thingy , while technically correct in that he has accomplished just about zero useful projects, has faults in that it tends to project the ineffectual , non-entity aura Rep Young intended when he came up with the name.
    Governor Parnell has been quite effective at sinking important legislation and running horsepunky up the flagpole in his quiet deadly sort of way.

    I was quite happy to see the State Senate push back hard and openly.
    Hope it keeps up.
    Fooey on the House majority getting suckered…

  10. mike from iowa says:

    Way past time to implement zero-tolerance for politicians. If its good enough for young people its more than good enough for those that should know better.

  11. ks sunflower says:

    Shannyn, great post.

    The last line is a classic!

    All Americans can identify with that sentiment as regards many of their elected officials, particularly the current crop of GOP and TP.

  12. Celia Harrison says:

    In the bush the rape kits are collected by health care professionals who would be the ones doing the collecting even if VPSOs were there. There are issues with the health care providers in many instances and I was once in charge of both the ER and clinic at NSHC and the SART person on call did not show up when called for a rape victim. I had to leave the woman by herself because when you work with workplace bullies aka loosers they don’t respond when you call for help. I requested the training so I could be on call for SART as there was clearly a problem, like so many other issues I was completely ignored. When I was in Nome working as an RN if the raped woman did not want the perp prosecuted law enforcement did not arrest them even if they knew who it was, Most of the rapes go completely unreported due to lack of support however. If you live in a remote village and there is no law enforcement around it is not safe to tell anyone you have been raped. There are also horrible cases of domestic violence for the same reasons. Most of the girls in many villages have been raped, some multiple times. This causes trauma which leads to lifelong mental health issues for which they get treatment so poor it is worse than no treatment. I am disgusted that Parnell is just as heartless as Palin.

    • Shannyn Moore says:

      There are many villages with no health care provider. We have to more than parades in Anchorage to fight rape.

      • cortez says:

        I too find the conditions in rural Alaska to be deplorable and an embarrassment, considering we are truly the richest state in the country. What I’m not sure of is the responsibility of the three main entities at play here, the Federal Govt., State of Alaska, and the Native Corporations. I realize some oversight is the responsibilty of the Feds, but certainly with the amount of money the State and Native Corporations make, there should be a difference in the villages from when I lived in the bush in 1976. There doesn’t seem to be any improvement in conditions at all.
        Is there a good resource to see how the different stakeholders share responsibility? (or should share, at least)

    • Pinwheel says:

      I am SART trained. Every community in the State of Alaska needs a SART trained advocate and a SART trained Law Enforcement officer. Best would be if there is also a medical facility in a community with a trained RN also has SART training and has qualified. This costs money. Why won’t the State of Alaska fund this training?

      As long as the State of Alaska ignores the crisis of sexual assualt, rape, sexually transmitted diseases, child abuse no funds are going to be available for criminal investigation, prosecution, incarceration.

  13. fishingmamma says:

    This is the reason to not vote for republicans.

  14. Jon Corbett says:

    Nicely done Shannyn…Thanks.

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