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May 18, 2021

Anchorage Redistricted with No Public Input

It was a big night at Tuesday’s Anchorage Assembly Meeting. The Anchorage School District Budget was passed, as was both the Municipal Operating Budget and the Municipal Capital Budget. However, I was there for the item that was slipped in towards the end. It was the first, last and only public meeting dedicated to Municipal Reapportionment…another word for Redistricting. You may be surprised to hear that the Assembly has been working on Reapportionment at all. You are not alone. If you remember the gerrymandering farce known as the State Redistricting process, the public meetings went on for months before anything…

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Treadwell Oversees & Meddles in Elections

‘Tis the season of the robocall. We all get them at some point – reminding us about a fundraiser, or from a candidate seeking our vote. Occasionally a candidate will get someone to call on his or her behalf. It’s usually not the sitting Lieutenant Governor. Yes boys and girls, if you live in the Valley, you may have gotten a robocall from Lite Gov Mead Treadwell singing the praises of local Tea Party types Larry Devilbiss for Mayor and Ron Arvin for Borough Assembly. Here’s what one of them said: “This is Mead Treadwell. The Mat-Su Borough has made…

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Bob Bell is Oh So Super Special

You know those politicians whom nobody can stand – the ones that think the rules apply to absolutely everyone? No exceptions. Except for them. I got one for you. Remember that scandal that had Director of the Alaska Division of Wildlife Conservation, Corey Rossi, in the headlines for weeks? Rossi and his croneys from the Board of Game got busted flying into rural Alaska and pretending to subsistence hunt muskoxen for food. You see, there’s a really really expensive way of hunting muskoxen, and there’s a much less expensive way. One way, you have to enter a lottery for a permit…

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Congress Bankrupts Postal Service

~Fritz Creek Post Office, about 10 miles from downtown Homer, Alaska Every town and burg has some form of post office. In small towns, it’s often where folks see announcements for memorial services or spaghetti feed fundraisers. The flags are always flying, no matter how small the post office. I remember one time the Homer post office had to call the Harris family because the horned toads their grandpa mailed them from Texas were loose. Boxes of baby chicks were a sign of spring. I remember the combination to our P.O. box in the 99556 office: 3-1-6. (I remembered it…

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(Updated) Costello’s Residency in Question

In a joint, bipartisan press conference called this morning, challengers in House District 20, raised questions about the residency of incumbent Repubican Mia Costello. Michelle Scannell (D) and Tamara Von Gemmingen (R) said they both came to the independent conclusion, as they canvassed the neighborhood, that Costello did not in fact live in the house she claimed as her residence in the district when she filed for reelection. ~Mia Costello’s alleged residence on Yukon Drive in District 20 So, where is she? Her two challengers say her car is frequently spotted at another residence she owns at 2100 Esquire, which…

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Audit Committee To Discuss ABT Tax Report

On Sunday, July 15th, the Anchorage Daily News ran a comprehensive story by Richard Mauer. It discussed a determination made by municipal tax assessor Marty McGee regarding accusations that the Anchorage Baptist Temple had violated the law relating to specific tax-exempt properties belonging to the church. Mel Green at Bent Alaska gives us some background: “The issue was first reported in a story broken by Bent Alaska on August 29, 2011, based on court documents in the divorce trial of ABT pastor Jerry Prevo’s son Allen Prevo and Holly Jo Jaggers (who returned to her maiden name after the divorce),…

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Alaska for Sale

~State Senator Lesil McGuire You know how some things that are technically legal still smell funny? Well, there’s something in the air right now. This week, Sen. Lesil McGuire glowed as she introduced the newly formed “magical challenger slush fund” for Gov. Sean Parnell at the Petroleum Club. Her word-salad about being a backbone herself for the Republican Party, and the Senate bipartisan working group needing more GOP in it, was, well, Palinesque. As someone who supports the “grown-ups” in Juneau, it was disappointing to see Sen. McGuire show up with her hand out to a governor whose oil tax…

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Muni Played Favorites With Ballots (*Update*)

In last week’s installment of the Municipality of Anchorage’s continuing 2012 Election debacle, new Municipal Clerk Barbara Jones made a disturbing find while attempting to (quite literally) clean up the old Municipal Clerk’s mess…141 unaccounted-for ballots. This has led the trusty Election Commission to meet this coming Thursday and review the ballots they missed the first two times around. While all of that has been going on, members of our Recount Observation Team have continued to research and slowly pursue the auditing process the Municipality has refused to provide. …and it’s been free of charge… The latest bombshell was discovered…

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The Strange Tale of Schaeffer Cox

In the vast pantheon of strange and eccentric Alaskan political figures, a relative newcomer in the field really stands out.  And believe me when I tell you that in Alaska, it takes a LOT to stand out. I submit for your consideration one very young and equally charismatic Schaeffer Cox – founder of the Alaska Peacemakers Militia, and organizing member of Fairbanks’ Second Amendment Task Force. At a meeting of the group back in 2009, Cox drafted a declaration stating that the United States Government must be abolished if it further restricts gun rights. Many signed the declaration, including another…

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Election Commissioner and Deputy Clerk Should Be Relieved of Duty

Brad Friedman, an award-winning investigative journalist and expert on issues of election integrity, and the Diebold AccuVote system used in the recent Anchorage Municipal election, had comments about inaccuracies told by the Election Commissioner Gwen Mathew at last night’s meeting of the Assembly to certify the election. His outrage, and call for both Mathew, and Deputy Clerk Jacqueline Duke to be removed from their posts immediately, is a sentiment shared by a growing number of Anchorage residents who are becoming more informed regarding their ineptitude and outright misinformation. Here are Friedman’s comments after watching Mathew’s testimony at Thursdays Assembly meeting,…

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