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May 15, 2021

High Drama in the Legislature!

TALL TALES from Juneau Eyes on the Dunleavy/Babcock administration HIGH DRAMA in the Legislature This may, or may not be an actual photo of Lora Reinbold ACT 1 – The House Today the House voted to rescind their previous vote, and in one final last-ditch effort managed to cobble enough votes together to pass a capital (construction) budget, and a “reverse sweep” to re-fund all the accounts that had been drained at the end of the fiscal year on June 30th. The governor can still line-item veto items in the capital budget itself, but programs re-funded by the reverse sweep…

Where’s the $3000, and Who’s Vetting These People?

TALL TALES from Juneau Eyes on the Dunleavy/Babcock Administration   The big news today is that the Senate passed their version of the budget, and everyone’s talking about how it contains a $3000 PFD, which is true. But lots of other things happened, and we’ll get to that in a moment. But before we do, there are a couple other happenings worth noting. “WHO’S VETTING THESE PEOPLE?” Stephen Moore Alaskans have been saying that since the very beginning of the Dunleavy appointment process. Remember Quick & Chance? No, not a quaint Dickensian law firm – the first two casualties of…

Governor’s Appointments – Thumbs Up and Thumbs Down

TALL TALES from Juneau Eyes on the Dunleavy/Babcock administration The Governor’s appointments and how they went down   THUMBS UP/THUMBS DOWN Well, that was a whopper. The governor’s appointees to commissioner positions and to boards and commissions were up for confirmation yesterday, and the joint floor session with members of the House and Senate took 7 hours and 48 minutes to wind up. At the end, all of the governor’s picks for Commissioner positions (even the most controversial) were passed with a majority of votes, but 6 appointees to the many boards and commissions in the state were rejected. And…

No Means No, Mr. Sullivan

Republican US Senate candidate Dan Sullivan has an interesting way of showing “respect” for women. For the past two weeks, Anchorage Assembly member and stalwart women’s advocate Elvi Gray-Jackson has been getting concerned phone calls from constituents about the use of a photograph captured at a “Choose Respect” rally—intended to highlight the issues of domestic violence and sexual assault that plague the state in record numbers. The event had nothing to do with the upcoming election. So what is Elvi Gray-Jackson doing with a Republican behind a giant banner advertising his senate candidacy? That is exactly what Assemblywoman Jackson and many others have been wondering. Dan Sullivan likely…

Assemblyman Admits Back Room Shenanigans

Tuesday’s Anchorage Assembly meeting promised to be more interesting than usual, but no one was expecting the jaw-dropping admission of blatant politicking by a supporter of the Mayor on the Assembly, and that the peoples’ referendum to repeal a draconian labor ordinance was being set up as a casualty of electoral manipulation. The Anchorage Assembly passed its anti-union, anti-public-employee Ordinance 37 back in March of 2013 despite hours and hours of testimony against it. In fact, Chair Ernie Hall even cut off testimony with many still waiting for an opportunity to speak. That led to the filing of a petition to…

I love my city, and I love my job

“It’s starting to feel like a rock concert.” I agreed with the anonymous voice drifting over the mass of people, packed like sardines into the lobby of the Assembly chambers. Bright lights were on, TV cameras set up, and people were fanning themselves with folders, and papers. Everyone was here to testify on Ordinance 37, the mayor’s attempt to take advantage of the current makeup of the Assembly to push through a law that would restrict workers’ rights, and curtail collective bargaining for public unions. The turnout was impressive. I wasn’t sure if anyone had shown up to testify in…

Fill the Boot, and Boot the Mayor

Driving down Northern Lights Boulevard yesterday, through the heart of our municipality on a lovely Friday afternoon, I saw something that made me do a double-take. I saw… the enemy. Not MY enemy, mind you, but the declared enemy of our city’s mayor, Dan Sullivan. Second only to homeless people, the mayor has it in for this sinister duo of panhandling grifters. I speak, of course of… (scary organ chord)… firefighters, and sick children. (blood curdling scream) Mayor Sullivan, and several members of the Anchorage Assembly did their darndest last year to quash the most profitable fundraiser for the Muscular…

The New and Unimproved Debbie Ossiander Scoffs at Democratic Process

So how completely impressed are we with our new Assembly Chair Debbie Ossiander? Just as impressed as we were with her the last time she was Chair. And that would be… not at all. Her ignominious rise to the top spot hinged, apparently, on her loyalty to Mayor Dan Sullivan, and she’s been eager to prove her empty-headed devotion since her return to the throne. First on the list of things to do it seems, was to circumvent that thing we like to call “democracy.” Anchorage is in the middle of redistricting. This is as important as it gets. The…

Mayor Dan Sullivan — Playground Bully (by LKB)

Remember THAT kid back in grade school? Remember coming to school and sharing the excitement of how you got the remote control car you wanted for Christmas? THAT kid would talk about his brand new remote control F-15 jet…life-sized. Or, you’d very proudly reveal the balsa wood car you’d carved yourself and painted red to run in the local Pinewood Derby while THAT kid would bring out the super-slick car he claimed he made himself but was secretly made by his daddy’s engineering firm. THAT kid was the one the teachers all thought was a wonderful student when he was…

Once Again, the Assembly is Sullied by Dan

Back when the Anchorage Assembly Chair was Dan Sullivan, he presided over a “meeting-before-the-meeting” of the Assembly. This is a meeting they have before their regular Tuesday Assembly meeting to basically get the organizational flotsam and jetsam out of the way…present amendments, new ordinances, etc…so that time isn’t eaten up on Tuesdays with “making the sausage.” Though the “open meeting laws” in Alaska ensure that anyone can sit in on these, at this particular meeting more members of the public were present than usual. You see, the debate over the ordinance that would halt smoking in the hospitality workplaces was…