Articles & Op-eds

12.12.19

Alaska Public Media: Bill would give Alaskans an advisory role in Arctic shipping

by Liz Ruskin

For ship travel, the Arctic is a new frontier, with an ocean of possibilities and few rules. A bill advancing in the U.S. Senate aims to allow new maritime opportunities while designing a framework that ensures safety. "It's not very often that you are able to really start with a blank sheet, and in this case, even though we're seeing stepped up volume of traffic, it's still a pretty blank sheet up there," said Sen. Lisa Murkowski, the bill's sponsor. "So let's make sure that we're doing this r… Continue Reading


12.09.19

Las Vegas Sun: For too long, Congress has delayed justice for Native American women

Finally, a long overdue bill to provide justice for missing and slain Native American women may be on a path to passage. Known as Savanna's Act, the measure would incentivize federal, state and local law enforcement agencies to investigate cold cases involving indigenous women and improve responses to crimes in which those women are victimized. It's named for Savanna Greywind, a member of the Spirit Lake Sioux Tribe who was killed in 2017 by a woman who cut Greywind's baby from her womb. The b… Continue Reading


12.09.19

Water Online: NAWC Applauds Bipartisan Bill To Restore Tax Treatment Of CIAC To Regulated Water Utilities

U.S. Senators Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) today introduced a bill (S. 2942) to amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to provide that certain contributions are treated as non-taxable contributions to capital. The legislation aims to prevent taxation of Contributions in Aid of Construction (CIAC), which are made by customers to regulated water utilities, for the construction or improvement of our nation's water infrastructure. The bill would also prevent the taxation of gove… Continue Reading


12.07.19

Associated Press: Alaska to receive $36M federal grant for earthquake recovery

A federal agency awarded Alaska a $35.8 million federal grant to support earthquake disaster recovery efforts, officials said. The Department of Housing and Urban Development awarded the grant in response to the damaging quake that struck parts of south-central Alaska Nov. 30, 2018, KTVA-TV reported Thursday. The HUD Community Development Block Grant-Disaster Recovery Program helps communities rebuild after natural disasters and prepare for future ones, officials said. This is the first time … Continue Reading


12.03.19

SitNews: Presidential directive will boost DGGS’ Alaska coastal mapping

by Mary Kauffman

President Donald J. Trump's recent decision to prioritize mapping of Arctic and nearshore coastal areas will advance ongoing state efforts to survey and document Alaska's coastal conditions, resources and hazards, the director of the Division of Geological and Geophysical Surveys (DGGS) said today. President Trump's memo builds upon a 1983 memo issued by President Ronald Reagan, which established the EEZ to advance the development of ocean resources and promote the protection of the marine envi… Continue Reading


12.02.19

Arctic Today: Why human trafficking is a serious — but mostly invisible — problem in Alaska

by Melody Schreiber

Kimberly Larson remembers the first time she was approached by human traffickers. She was 12 years old, walking downtown in Anchorage, and strangers pulled over to ask if she wanted a meal at Wendy's. They asked where she was living, what she needed. "They were looking for a young girl to exploit," she told ArcticToday. It didn't work. The strangers' oddly familiar questions set off alarm bells for Larson, and she kept walking. By the time Larson reached her forties, she thought she was out o… Continue Reading


11.30.19

Associated Press: Cold Case Bill Gains Steam

by Dave Kolpack

A bill originally meant to help law enforcement investigate cold cases of murdered and missing indigenous women that has floundered in Congress for two years may have the missing ingredients to become law - money and muscle. The money comes from an appropriations subcommittee chaired by Alaska Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski, who told The Associated Press that for the first time funding is being directed specifically to murdered and missing indigenous people. The muscle comes from the White Hou… Continue Reading


11.30.19

Fairbanks Daily News-Miner: Trump orders Reagan-era Alaska mapping initiative to continue

by Erin McGroarty

Alaska's all-Republican congressional delegation is celebrating a memo by President Donald Trump calling for the continuation of an initiative to map areas of Alaska's coastline and oceans. The memo, building upon a memo issued in 1983 by then-President Ronald Reagan, directs federal agencies to continue mapping the shoreline and nearshore of Alaska and the rest of the United States EEZ or exclusive economic zone. The EEZ is among the largest in the world, including more than 13,000 miles of c… Continue Reading


11.25.19

ThinkGeoEnergy: Why new introduced legislation can provide an important boost to geothermal in the U.S.

by Alexander Richter

In October this year, U.S. Sens. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, and Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., introduced bipartisan legislation to accelerate geothermal energy development in the United States, see "Senate/ Republican News". The Advanced Geothermal Innovation Leadership Act of 2019 (the "AGILE" Act), we reported on it, includes provisions for research and development of both existing and enhanced geothermal systems, resource assessment updates, grant program authorization, and improved permitting. This… Continue Reading


11.23.19

KTUU: New legislation would address cold cases of missing women in Alaska

by Derek Minemyer

A list of names highlights a grim reality in Alaska - a crisis of missing or murdered indigenous women and children. More than 50 such cases are missing from law enforcement records, according to the Urban Indian Health Institute. These unsolved cases leave families scarred and desperate for answers -- prompting action from federal lawmakers to provide closure once and for all. "If you have a family member who has gone missing, who was murdered and the case has not been solved, think about the… Continue Reading


11.22.19

KTVA: Bills aim to fight violent crimes against Alaska Native women

by Jennifer Summers

Two bills co-sponsored by Alaska's Sen. Lisa Murkowski and aimed at helping prosecute crimes against Alaska Native women are headed to the Senate for consideration, according to a release from the senator's office. Murkowski says the bills - Savanna's Act and Not Invisible Act - address the crisis of missing, murdered and trafficked Native women. The measures, also sponsored by Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto, D-Nevada, encourage coordination between law enforcement and tribal leaders and attempt … Continue Reading


11.22.19

Fairbanks Daily News-Miner: LETTER: F-35s and Fairbanks

by Senator Lisa Murkowski

This week well over a dozen members of the Fairbanks community, including the military, joined Sen. Dan Sullivan, Congressman Don Young and me at the Lockheed Martin F-35 assembly plant in Fort Worth, Texas, where we were able to see Alaska's own F-35As currently in production and which will soon be heading to Eielson Air Force Base. It was truly fitting for members of the community to be there to celebrate this milestone. The group included part of the original Tiger Team - mayors, representat… Continue Reading


11.22.19

Arctic Sounder: Senators introduce legislation for Arctic security center

by Shady Grove Oliver

Arctic security is at the forefront of new legislation introduced by both Alaska senators. "It is an evolving world out there," said Sen. Lisa Murkowski, speaking in Washington, D.C., on Monday. "As we are seeing the impact from climate change, as we are seeing ice recede, as we are seeing waterways open up, as we are seeing greater access, as we are seeing greater threats, what are we doing to prepare?" Murkowski was discussing legislation she introduced alongside fellow Alaska Sen. Dan Sulli… Continue Reading


11.22.19

LSTK: Wrangell mayor urges US Senate to keep federal funds flowing

by June Leffler

Alaska cities and boroughs can't develop or collect property taxes on federal land, but sometimes they've got a lot of it. The City and Borough of Wrangell, for instance, has just 2,500 people, but covers an area that's larger than Delaware. Wrangell Mayor Steve Prysunka testified in the U.S. Senate Thursday in favor of two federal programs that reimburse local governments for the public land in their backyard. Because of the Tongass National Forest, Prysunka said, more than 97 percent of his … Continue Reading


11.21.19

Senate Finally Advances Bills Addressing Missing And Murdered Indigenous Women

by Jennifer Bendery

It's taken all year, but the Senate finally inched forward with legislation on Wednesday that addresses a largely invisible crisis in America: Indigenous women and girls are going missing and being murdered. At least 506 Native American women and girls have gone missing or been killed in 71 U.S. cities, with 330 of those cases occurring since 2010, according to a November 2018 report by Urban Indian Health Institute. The institute says that 506 number is likely a gross undercount because of the … Continue Reading


11.21.19

Alaska Public Media: ‘Savanna’s Act’ advances in US Senate; Aimed at mending police response to violence against Native women

by Liz Ruskin

The Senate Indian Affairs Committee passed a bill Wednesday aimed at improving how law enforcement agencies deal with cases of murdered and missing indigenous women. Savanna's Act would require better data collection. It would provide training and technical assistance to tribes and local police and it would foster cooperation among agencies. The sponsor, Sen. Lisa Murkowski, says equally important to any provision within the bill's 14 pages is the message it sends to Native communities. "Becau… Continue Reading


11.20.19

Nextgov: Senate Committee Approves $250 Million to Fund the Electric Grid Security

by Jack Corrigan

The Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee on Tuesday advanced legislation that would devote hundreds of millions of dollars to securing the nation's power grid. The Protecting Resources on the Electric Grid with Cybersecurity Technology, or PROTECT, Act, would create a federal grant program to help small utilities companies strengthen the cyber protections on their infrastructure and more actively participate in information sharing efforts. Spearheaded by the Energy Department, the prog… Continue Reading


11.20.19

Fairbanks Daily News-Miner: AK congressional delegation tours F-35 plant in Texas

by Alistair Gardiner

U.S. Sens. Lisa Murkowski and Dan Sullivan, and Congressman Don Young, all R-Alaska, toured Lockheed Martin's F-35 assembly plant in Fort Worth, Texas, on Monday, along with a group of military and community leaders from Interior Alaska. The group got to see the first F-35 aircraft that will eventually be stationed at Eielson Air Force Base starting in spring 2020. In response to concerns about the cost of sustaining the F-35 fleet, which were raised in a Government Accountability Office report… Continue Reading


11.19.19

E&E News: Panel approves LWCF, parks, revenue-sharing bills

by Kellie Lunney

A Senate panel this morning approved legislation to provide permanent funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund, reform offshore drilling revenue sharing and tackle the multibillion-dollar backlog in national parks. The Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee also reported out a flurry of bills that would boost funding for Department of Energy research and increase the department's focus on clean energy technologies. In addition, the committee approved the administration's nominat… Continue Reading


11.18.19

Bloomberg: Frankenfish,’ Stem Cells, Vaping Top Questions Facing FDA Pick

by Alex Ruoff

President Donald Trump's selection to be the next head of the FDA will face a barrage of questions this week about his views on vaping, oversight of stem-cell therapies and even "Frankenfish." Stephen Hahn, chief medical executive of the prestigious MD Anderson Cancer Center at the University of Texas in Houston, will go before the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee Wednesday for his first public hearing since being nominated to become commissioner of the Food and Drug Admin… Continue Reading

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