Articles & Op-eds


Utility Drive: Bipartisan bill targets federal nuke PPA by 2024, advanced reactor demos by 2025

by HJ Mai

Dive Brief: House members on Tuesday introduced bipartisan legislation to encourage further development of advanced nuclear energy programs. Key parts of the bill include developing at least two advanced nuclear reactor demonstration projects by Dec. 31, 2025; creating a nationwide strategy for nuclear science and engineering research and development; and revising federal contracting regulations. The bill extends the maximum length of federal power purchase agreements (PPAs) from 10 to 40 y… Continue Reading


Marianas Variety: Kilili: HR 559 passes Senate; parolees fate now with president

U.S. Congressman Gregorio Kilili Camacho Sablan's legislation providing permanent status for as many as 1,039 individuals, living in the Marianas under humanitarian parole, passed the Senate on Thursday afternoon. The bill, H.R. 559, now goes to the White House for the President's signature. If the President signs Sablan's legislation before June 29, parolees, who have lived lawfully in the Marianas since 2009, will be able to continue to live and work in the islands. Otherwise, the parolees, in… Continue Reading


KTVF: Dept. of the Interior distributes $30 million to local Alaskan governments through the P.I.L.T. program

Local governments throughout Alaska will be receiving more than $30 million dollars through the 'Payments in Lieu of Taxes' or 'PILT' program. The program provides payments to local governments throughout Alaska that contain federal lands which are not subject to state or local taxation. According to a press release from Senator Lisa Murkowski's office, the revenue helps these communities with construction of public schools, roads, firefighting, police protection, and search and rescue operatio… Continue Reading


KTVF: Indian Affairs Committee considers law enforcement & public safety bills

New law enforcement and public safety bills are being considered in the US Senate. According to a statement released by Senator Murkowski, the Senate Indian Affairs committee held a legislative hearing on bills to address the epidemic of missing, murdered, and trafficked Indigenous women and focus on improving public safety and justice systems. Bills, such as the 'Savanna's Act' and the 'Not Invisible Act' will combat the epidemic of murdered and missing Native women and girls by improving the… Continue Reading


KTVA: Sen. Lisa Murkowski votes to provide $4B for US southern border crisis

by Shayne Nuesca

Sen. Lisa Murkowski voted, along with nearly the entire Senate Appropriations Committee, to provide $4.6 billion in supplemental funding for the crisis at the southern U.S. border. In a statement dated Wednesday, Murkowski's office says the bill addresses the growing number of migrants arriving at the border. The funding will go toward supporting immigration judge teams, medical care, clothing and essential needs for migrants. The funding will also provide safety and welfare needs of migrant c… Continue Reading


Associated Press: Alaska Congress members ask to tap relief funds for seafood

Alaska's congressional delegation said the state's fishermen and seafood processors should be included in a federal trade war relief package, a report said. Lawmakers asked the Trump administration to give its seafood industry access to $15 billion earmarked for farmers, The Anchorage Daily News reported Wednesday. "Unjustified retaliatory" tariffs are eroding Alaska seafood's market share in China, U.S. Sens. Lisa Murkowski and Dan Sullivan and Rep. Don Young said in a June 11 letter. The de… Continue Reading


Fairbanks Daily News-Miner: Murkowski, Sullivan support tougher PFAS standards

by Erin McGroarty

Both of Alaska's U.S senators have voiced support for an amendment to the 2020 National Defense Authorization Act that would advise the Environmental Protection Agency to step up its PFAS contaminant testing and treatment standards. PFAS, known as per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, are a category of human-made chemicals that repel water and grease and are found in products such as nonstick pans and raincoats. Much of the contamination in Alaska is caused by firefighting foams used at airports… Continue Reading


Alaska Journal of Commerce: Alaska senators gain support on transboundary mining issues

by Elwood Brehmer

Senators from the Western U.S. are joining the Alaska congressional delegation to press the issue of Canadian mining practices in transboundary watersheds . The bipartisan group of six senators - Mike Crapo, R-Idaho; Jim Risch, R-Idaho; Jon Tester, D-Mont.; Steve Daines, R-Mont.; Maria Cantwell, D-Wash.; and Patty Murray, D-Wash. - sent a letter along with Alaska Sens. Lisa Murkowski and Dan Sullivan June 13 to British Columbia Premier John Horgan highlighting the steps states and the federal g… Continue Reading


Report: US needs more domestic sources for critical minerals

by Elwood Brehmer

Filling the country's domestic deficit of numerous minerals and metals has been a priority of the Trump administration, which on June 4 released a plan for addressing what it considers to be a national security issue. The Commerce Department report, entitled, "A Federal Strategy to Ensure Secure and Reliable Supplies of Critical Minerals" lays out the ways in which the administration believes the U.S. can improve domestic control over 31 of the 35 often hard to pronounce minerals designated as … Continue Reading


E&E News: Murkowski 'not rushing' on reform hearing

by Geof Koss

Senate Energy and Natural Resources Chairwoman Lisa Murkowski signaled yesterday she's not in a hurry to hold a hearing on a broad hardrock mining reform proposal that her Democratic colleagues are pressing. "I'm not rushing to it right now," the Alaska Republican told E&E News yesterday of the hearing request made by nine of her Democratic colleagues last week on the reform bill, S. 1386 (Greenwire, June 12). The House Natural Resources Committee has already held a hearing on reforming th… Continue Reading


BuiltIn: Sens. Klobuchar and Murkowski address health privacy gaps in new legislation

by Folake Dosu

The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, or HIPAA, was a huge leap forward in health care privacy that set the standard for health information protection. Now, it's under fire for being outdated. In response to the changing healthcare technology landscape, U.S. Senators Amy Klobuchar, D-Minnesota and Lisa Murkowski, R-Arkansas are pushing legislation that would account for emerging technology such as health apps and direct-to-consumer genetic tests, reports Health IT Security. … Continue Reading


Daily Energy Insider: Senate bill would reduce energy, water use in federal buildings

by Dave Kovaleski

U.S. Sens. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) and Joe Manchin (D-WV) introduced last week a bill to establish energy and water usage reduction goals for federal buildings. The bill, the Federal Energy and Water Management Performance Act of 2019, is cosponsored by Sens. Rob Portman (R-OH), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Cory Gardner (R-CO), and Mazie Hirono (D-HI). It would authorize the program to do this - the Federal Energy Management Program (FEMP) - through 2030. "Increasing energy efficiency is an idea we s… Continue Reading


Arctic Today: New US icebreaker to be based in Seattle

by Melody Schreiber

The first heavy icebreaker to be taken into service by the U.S. Coast Guard since the 1970s will be be home-ported in Seattle, Washington, the Coast Guard announced Monday. Two subsequent icebreakers, if built, will also be based in Seattle. "The Pacific Northwest has been the home of our icebreaking fleet since 1976, and I am confident that the Seattle area will continue to provide the support we need to carry out our critical operations in the polar regions," said Adm. Karl Schultz, commandan… Continue Reading


Federal News Network: Federal workers could have benefits protected during future government shutdowns

by Eric White

To listen to the Federal Newscast on your phone or mobile device, subscribe on PodcastOne or Apple Podcasts. The best listening experience on desktop can be found using Chrome, Firefox or Safari. Two bills to protect federal employees' health insurance benefits during future government shutdowns advanced to the full House for a vote. The House Oversight and Reform Committee cleared both pieces of legislation last week. One ensures employees who experience a major life event can immediately enro… Continue Reading


Elko Daily: OPINION: America's energy, tech and defense future needs mining

by John Adams

As the recent trade war with China has escalated, Beijing has implied that it may retaliate by withholding rare earth minerals. Such a strategic vulnerability - and America's alarmingly high reliance on imported minerals and metals - is now in the spotlight for all the world to see. China's rare earth threat underscores just how perilous U.S. mineral import reliance has become. While rare earths are currently the focus, America's overall reliance on imports of these minerals is indicative of a … Continue Reading


AmmoLand: NSSF Commends U.S. Sen. Graham’s 2019 Federal Firearms Licensee Protection Act

The National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) today is commending U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham's (R-S.C.) introduction of S. 1788, the Federal Firearms Licensee Protection Act of 2019, which will strengthen the criminal penalties for thefts of firearms from federally licensed retailers. "Thefts from federally licensed firearms retailers represent particularly brazen offenses that hold potential for additional crime when stolen guns are sold on the street," said Lawrence G. Keane, NSSF Senior V… Continue Reading


mHealth Intelligence: New AMA Policy Supports Project ECHO, CPAP Telemedicine Programs

by Eric Wicklund

The American Medical Association is throwing its support behind two telemedicine models that aim to improve provider education and patient access to care in rural and underserved parts of the country. During its Annual Meeting this week, the AMA adopted a policy to encourage implementation of Project ECHO (Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes) and Child Psychiatry Access Project (CPAP) programs by academic health centers and community-based primary care physicians. Both programs use conn… Continue Reading


The Hill: Female senators hatch plan to 'shame' Senate into voting faster

by Jordain Carney

When female senators met for dinner on Tuesday night, they hatched a plan born out of a similar frustration: It was taking the Senate too long to vote. "This is one of the things that happen when the women get together for dinner. …There was discussion about 'why the heck is this taking so long.' So Lisa said we should all be on the floor, sit on the floor and basically shame the guys to, you know, hurry up and vote," said Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii). The group, which has nicknamed its… Continue Reading


KTVF: New battery storage systems help bring energy stability to rural Alaska

by Sara Tewksbury

On Friday, June 9, 2019, Cordova had a ribbon cutting for their new 500 kW Battery Energy Storage System and energy leaders from Washington D.C. and Alaska were there to celebrate the new system. One of the first projects of this kind in Alaska was GVEA's battery energy storage system commissioned in 2002, when it was the largest in the world. "A lot of people are probably unaware that Golden Valley has one of the world's largest battery energy storage systems, and when it was installed, and f… Continue Reading


Fairbanks Daily News-Miner: The Izembek road fight: Trump administration right to press ahead for much-needed road

News-Miner opinion: The proposed road through the Izembek National Wildlife Refuge would hardly seem to be an issue of concern for residents of Interior Alaska. The refuge is located, after all, about 1,300 miles away from Fairbanks near the far end of the Alaska Peninsula. But it is a concern. And that is why it is good to hear that the administration of President Donald Trump has agreed to appeal the late March decision of an Anchorage federal judge to block the project. The reason Interior … Continue Reading

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