Articles & Op-eds


Anchorage Daily News: Federal spending bill includes $3M for rural Alaska trooper housing and other facilities

by Riley Rogerson

WASHINGTON - The recently-passed federal spending bill includes $3 million in Alaska State Troopers facilities, seeking to address a shortage of housing for law enforcement officials in rural parts of the state. The funding, which was directed to the Alaska Department of Public Safety, is aimed at helping increase law enforcement capacity in rural Alaska. A Daily News and ProPublica investigation in 2019 found that one in three Alaska communities had no local police protection. A 2020 study fro… Continue Reading


Ketchikan Daily: Honoring Young

by Ketchikan Daily News

Approved by Congress in December, the Don Young Recognition Act that commemorates the late "Congressman for All Alaska" was signed into law Thursday by President Joe Biden. The legislation is an appropriate tribute for a man whose personality was almost as big as the state that he represented in Congress for 49 years before he died - while still in office - on March 18, 2022, at the age of 88. Introduced by Alaska Sens. Lisa Murkowski and Dan Sullivan, the Don Young Recognition Act renames an … Continue Reading


Fairbanks Daily News Miner: University of Alaska to gain 360K acres under federal spending bill

by Jack Barnwell

The University of Alaska will gain a large swath of new land thanks to a provision in the recently-passed $1.7 trillion omnibus bill. The clause, located on page 2,819 of the massive 4,100 page spending bill, will allocate 360,000 acres of land to the UA system within four years. The university system currently owns 150,700 acres of land, or 30% of what was promised via land conveyance before the Alaska was granted statehood. UA President Pat Pitney called the legislation a pivotal step forwa… Continue Reading


Cordova Times: Murkowski begins new term as Alaska’s senior senator

by The Cordova Times

Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, was officially sworn in by Vice President Kamala Harris on Tuesday, Jan. 3, at the start of the 118th Congress, to serve as senior senator for Alaska. Murkowski is now 15th in Senate seniority and sixth among Senate Republicans. She first took office on Dec. 20, 2002. The 118th Congress marks the start of Murkowski's fourth full term. During the 117th Congress, nearly two dozen of the bills she sponsored and cosponsored or their House companions, became law. Mur… Continue Reading


KTOO: Federal spending bill directs $16 million to Juneau projects

by Katie Anastas

The omnibus spending bill passed by Congress late last year provides more than $16 million in funding for Juneau-based projects. The funding items include ongoing analysis of a second bridge to Douglas and a new youth services center. The city is getting $2.5 million to design and build a commercial-scale composting facility. City Manager Rorie Watt said that will help extend the life of the local landfill, which has about 20 years left at its current usage level. "It's in our interest that i… Continue Reading


Kodiak Daily Mirror: Island Trail Network receives $1M for trash removal

by Caleb Oswell

The Island Trails Network of Kodiak will receive $1 million in funding for removal, recycling and recovery of debris and litter from the Alaska marine environment. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, secured $15 million in funding for Alaska oceans as part of the huge spending bill passed by Congress before the holiday break. The $15 million will also be used for several other programs.… Continue Reading


Alaska Beacon: University of Alaska will gain land under new federal budget law

by James Brooks

An obscure clause in the just-passed $1.7 trillion federal omnibus budget law has awarded the University of Alaska a plot of land half the size of the state of Rhode Island. The clause begins on page 2,819 of the 4,126-page law and calls for the university to receive 360,000 acres of federal land within the next four years, fulfilling the amount owed to it because of its status as a land-grant school. The university earns between $7 million and $8 million per year in revenue from 151,000 acres… Continue Reading


Alaska Public Media: ‘Arctic pay’ among the perks Congress is sending to improve military assignments in Alaska

by Liz Ruskin

Members of the military stationed in Alaska are in line for some extra financial benefits in 2023. Bills that Congress passed this month include special "Arctic pay" for troops who are based in Alaska and perform critical work in cold weather. The change could add a few hundred dollars a month to a service member's paycheck. The special duty pay for service in cold weather is one of several incentives Congress approved to boost morale for Alaska troops. And, with more than 20,000 active duty s… Continue Reading


Fairbanks Daily News Miner: Federal funding to support Yukon-Kuskokwim salmon projects

by Jack Barnwell

The large $1.7 trillion omnibus bill approved by Congress last week contains a number of environmental measures that will benefit Alaska's fisheries, including those in the Interior. U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, who secured some of the funding through her Congressionally Directed Spending requests, and U.S. Rep. Mary Peltola both applauded the inclusion of the items in the omnibus bill. The state will receive $2 million to monitor the salmon population in the Kuskokwim and Yukon River watersheds. … Continue Reading


Alaska Beacon: Private legislation signed by Biden ends legal limbo for former Alaska resident

by Yereth Rosen

A former Alaska resident once threatened with imminent deportation to Mexico because of a paperwork glitch involving her adoption as a newborn has now been granted permanent resident status and a path to citizenship. Rebecca Trimble is the subject of private legislation that was championed by the Alaska Congressional delegation and signed into law by President Biden on Tuesday. Private legislation, which applies to specific individuals, is rare. This was the first piece of private legislation … Continue Reading


Anchorage Daily News: University of Alaska set to receive thousands of acres of land in federal spending package

by Morgan Krakow

The University of Alaska is set to gain hundreds of thousands of acres of land because of a provision in the recently passed, $1.7 trillion federal spending package. The institution, which is a land grant university, has only received a fraction of the land Congress had intended for it. The university has about 30%, or 150,700 acres of the land it's owed. Delaware is the only state with a smaller land grant. The clause in the new spending package creates an avenue for the university to gain ar… Continue Reading


Alaska’s News Source: Woman granted immigration status adjustment after long battle — in Rep. Don Young’s final legislation

by Tim Rockey

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - A U.S. Army officer's wife who previously lived in Bethel has finally been granted a status adjustment to allow for her lawful permanent residency in the United States after an eight-year-long battle working toward American citizenship. Rebecca Trimble moved to the U.S. from Mexico when she was just days old to live with her adoptive parents in 1989. She believed that she was an American citizen - and had a birth certificate and social security card - until applying f… Continue Reading


Frontiersman: Murkowski brings home the bacon, including for Mat-Su

by Tim Bradner

Mat-Su communities fared well in the end-of-year bag of programs funded by Sen. Lisa Murkowski's designated projects in the federal omnibus budget bill. In total, Murkowski, a senior member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, steered $500 million to Alaska in special funding for 130 projects. The budget bill also approved 12 federal agency appropriation bills including for the Department of Defense, which is important for Alaska. The defense bill included a 4.6 percent pay raise for milit… Continue Reading


Center Square: Millions for Alaska's fisheries included in omnibus package

by Kim Jarrett

(The Center Square) - The $1.7 trillion spending bill passed by Congress includes millions for Alaska's fisheries and a provision that creates a task force to study Alaska's Pacific salmon. The Alaska Salmon Research Task Force will have between 13 and 19 members, with most of them appointed by the Secretary of Commerce, according to a news release from U.S. Rep. Mary Peltola. Alaska Gov. Mike Dunleavy will appoint one member from the state. The task force will be created 90 days from Dec. 23,… Continue Reading


Alaska Public Media: Mount Young: Aleutian volcano is renamed for explosive Alaska congressman

by Liz Ruskin

Any day now, President Joe Biden is expected to sign into law a bill that renames a volcano on a small Aleutian Island after the late Congressman Don Young. U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski said she knew Young's softer side, as well as the reasons for his volatile reputation. She said she and U.S. Sen. Dan Sullivan intentionally chose a volcano. "As we were looking for something that might be fitting, we looked not only at mountains, but we looked at mountains that continue to blow their top to this v… Continue Reading


Alaska Landmine: President Biden signs private bill for Rebecca Trimble, military wife and mother government tried to deport

by Jeff Landfield

Rebecca Trimble received a rare and long-awaited Christmas present this year. On December 15, the Senate unanimously passed a private bill for Trimble. The bill was introduced by the late Don Young and passed the House unanimously on June 7. President Joe Biden signed it into law today. The bill allows Trimble, who was inadvertently brought into the U.S. illegally by her adoptive parents when she was only days old, to remain in the country indefinitely. Private bills, which benefit a specific i… Continue Reading


Alaska Public Media: Congress passes bill to help former Bethel resident who faced deportation

by Francisco Martínezcuello

If everything goes right, former Bethel resident Rebecca Trimble will be an American soon. It's a moment that has taken years to reach. Her husband John Trimble, a captain in the U.S. Army Reserve, said that they're waiting for a final decision before they celebrate. "You know, like, we've gotten so hopeful so many times along the way and then been disappointed," he said. "That's just how I feel about it. It's definitely exciting, but we've kind of trained ourselves to not get too, too excited… Continue Reading


Fairbanks Daily News-Miner: Alaska delegation seeks Willow project decision

by Jack Barnwell

Groups from all sides are pressing President Joe Biden to make a decision on the Willow project, a prospective major North Slope oil development on federal land. While conservation groups are pushing the federal government to deny permits for the $8 billion ConocoPhillips project, the Alaska Delegation has been pushing the other way. In a joint news statement, Sens. Lisa Murkowksi and Dan Sullivan and Rep. Mary Peltola said they've met twice with senior Biden officials in an effort to move the… Continue Reading


Fairbanks Daily News-Miner: Bill naming volcano, federal building after Young heads to White House

by Jack Barnwell

The late Rep. Don Young's legacy will continue to endure in Alaska's history books and on the state's landmarks - including an Aleutian Islands volcano. Mount Cerberus, one of the Aleutian Islands most active volcanoes, will be renamed Mount Young should the president signs the Don Young Recognition Act. Both the House and Senate unanimously passed the bill and sent it to President Joe Biden for final approval. The bill also designates the downtown Fairbanks Federal building at 101 12th Avenu… Continue Reading


Fairbanks Daily News-Miner: Massive spending bill heads to president, with millions for Interior

by Jack Barnwell

A $1.7 trillion spending bill that include millions for Fairbanks projects passed through the House of Representatives and Senate and hit the president's desk Friday. Sen. Lisa Murkowski secured nearly $500 million in Congressionally Directed Spending projects for Alaska in the omnibus bill that benefit several sectors, from military to workforce, housing and food security. "I'm particularly pleased with the funding we secured to help address those challenges, which will make our communities s… Continue Reading

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