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June 22, 2021

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APOC Complaint Against Rep. Bill Thomas Campaign (R-Haines)–The response(s).

Back on October 13th, I posted about the APOC Complaint I had filed against the re-election campaign of Representative Bill Thomas, Jr. (above, on the left, with Sen. Al Kookesh, who appears in several of the ads.) The complaint is in response to a newspaper advertising campaign consisting of 12 ads which ran in the Chilkat Valley News during the weeks leading up to the primary election: …Upon further research, it was impossible to determine exactly what category of legal contributions these ads were attempting to fit, if any: James Studley was the one who coordinated the entire ad buy….

Speed Hump Consultant? The jokes write themselves…

There is a rumor out there…that in neighborhoods across Anchorage, some who have problems with speeding traffic and have been unable to get “speed humps” (a “traffic calming” solution)  have started to…errrr…improvise with things like traffic cones (see the picture above).  The sad irony is that any unauthorized attempt to try and avoid a tragic accident will be removed by the Municipality. Thanks, Mayor Sullivan. Mudflats fans are aware of the excellent job Jeanne and Shannyn have been doing covering the Municipality of Anchorage “Speed Hump” debacle.   A short wrap-up may help those of you not as familiar with the issue: –A little girl was hit by a car in…

Legislative Session Required to Confirm New Alaska Lt. Governor. Isn’t That ‘Special?’

Legal opinion is in, and a special session of the Alaska state legislature looms.  Yup, that means that in all likelihood, this pack of hearty souls who have had to endure what must have felt like the longest gubernatorial partial term in the history of ever….isn’t done yet.  The Commissioner of the Department of Corrections who, for some reason, was chosen and accepted the #3 spot in gubernatorial succession has decided he’d rather not have the job of Lt. Governor after all.  Not that anyone necessarily blames him.  Even he recognizes that Sarah Palin’s former high school buddy suddenly plopped in…

Buckle Up. The Palin Transition Begins.

OK folks, here we go.  Rub your palms briskly on your face, and shake out your arms.  The Palin transition begins… So, last February, Sarah Palin appointed someone to be third in line for the governor’s office.  That someone was Wasilla High School pal Joe Schmidt, Commissioner of the Department of Corrections.  An odd choice for several reasons.  But nevertheless, it’s the governor’s prerogative to choose, and he was confirmed by the legislature. Now presumably, whomever accepts the position of #3 in line to the throne is thinking … “Wow.  If anything happens, like the governor deciding to run for…

Numbers Shmumbers…

“In the past two years, the state of Alaska has spent millions of dollars processing ethics complaints, public records requests, and related lawsuits.” That was the claim coming from the office of Governor Sarah Palin, who likes to use the phrase “frivolous ethics complaints.”  That was nine days ago. Today, we learn that “millions of dollars” is in fact, actually $296,000, as far as ethics complaints go.  Numbers shmumbers. The complete breakdown is not yet available, but we do know this about the three spendiest ones: $187,797 stemmed from the Troopergate investigation, a good chunk of which Palin initiated herself….

Alaska Civics 101 With Rep. Berta Gardner.

I made  it a point to roust myself this morning to go hear Representative Berta Gardner give a talk at the Unitarian Universalist Forum.  She was there to talk about the legislature, and her talk was fascinating and very well received.  The thing I liked about it was that she was able to explain, in layman’s terms, what actually goes on in the “legislative bubble” that is Juneau, from a Democratic perspective.  She is charming, and intelligent, and speaks from the heart.  She talked from a place of both idealism and pragmatism, the two “isms” that often enter into an uneasy…

Lunch with Labor and Lattes with the Legislature!

Today from 11:30 – 1:30, Anchorage union members are hosting a picnic to encourage Senator Lisa Murkowski to support the Employee Free Choice Act.  Attendees will sign petitions and make phone calls to the Senator to encourage her to support the Act. In a strange case of “go figure,”  Congressman Don Young who sponsors the EFCA will be in attendance at the picnic. All union members and their families are invited to attend. The picnic will be held in the parking lot of Laborers International Union 341 (LIUNA), 2501 Commercial Drive, Anchorage, AK (In case of rain, the picnic will…

“Let Them Cut Wood” in the Forests of Western Alaska.

The legislative session ends today, but the fun continues right to the bitter end. Residents of rural Alaska were interested to note that Rep. Mike Kelly (R) from Fairbanks (who won the election by one vote), is irritated with the idea of appropriating state energy assistance money to rural Alaska and suggested that people shouldn’t rely on state aid, but instead should “cut wood.” If you are picturing the rural villages of Western Alaska with dwellings nestled among stands of large hardwood trees and dense foliage, you may now disavow yourself of that supposition.  In places like Emmonak, which has a few scrubby alders,…