Press Releases

Media Requests: Members of the media can contact the press office by emailing or by calling 206-302-8317 and asking for the press office.


Murkowski, Begich Announce Plan to Halt Scrapping of Polar Sea

WASHINGTON, D.C. -Senators Lisa Murkowski, Mark Begich and Maria Cantwell (D-WA) have reached an agreement with the U.S. Coast Guard to postpone the scrapping of the Polar Sea through the end of 2012 - scheduled to begin within days, on Monday. The agreement was reached during a meeting of the Senators and the Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard, Admiral Robert Papp, Jr. The icebreaker, based in Seattle, had been scheduled to be dry-docked and taken apart beginning Monday. This process would ha… Continue Reading


Murkowski Pushes for Boost to Fight “Staggering” Suicide Rates

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Lisa Murkowski urged her colleagues on the Appropriations Committee to give resources to Alaska Natives, Native Americans and Native Hawaiians a higher priority by filing an amendment to the Labor/Health and Human Services Appropriations bill that would move $10 million from the health care law to Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) suicide prevention efforts. Funding the Fight Against Suicide In remarks shared before the Appropriatio… Continue Reading


Murkowski Welcomes PILT Payments to Alaskan Communities

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, today announced that the Department of the Interior is distributing nearly $27 million to Alaskan communities in compensation for taxes that could not be levied on federal lands in their jurisdictions during fiscal year 2012. The Payments in Lieu of Taxes (PILT) program provides monetary compensation to local governments that contain National Forests, Bureau of Land Management public lands, National Parks and other lands dedicated to water … Continue Reading


Murkowski: Imitating China is Not the Best Way to Compete with China

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, today highlighted the fundamental differences between the United States and China in measuring which country is leading the race to develop alternative energy technologies. (Click for video of Murkowski's full opening statement) "We hear claims that the United States is somehow 'falling behind' China in a 'clean energy race.' In so many ways, we are not falling behind. From the wages and conditions for our workers to our environmental … Continue Reading


Murkowski Shares Kodiak Concerns with Secretary of the Army

WASHINGTON, D.C. - In the wake of the U.S. Army Reserve Vessel Monterrey's recent accident on Puffin Island near Kodiak, Senator Lisa Murkowski is asking Secretary of the Army John McHugh to keep her informed of the recovery and repair efforts. In a letter, Murkowski writes, "I expect that the Army will fully investigate the cause of this incident and take all appropriate steps, in conjunction with the Coast Guard and the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation, to prevent damage to th… Continue Reading


Murkowski Honors Longtime Staffer Sherrie Slick

WASHINGTON, D.C. -In a speech on the U.S. Senate floor this afternoon, Senator Lisa Murkowski paid tribute to longtime staff member Sherrie Slick - Special Assistant in Senator Murkowski's Ketchikan office - who is retiring at the end of the month after 25 years of service to the United States Senate. Click here to watch the entire floor speech. "Sherrie over the years has responded to tens of thousands of public and media inquiries, requests for help over everything from Social Security check… Continue Reading


Murkowski Urges Defense Secretary to Fight Military Suicides

WASHINGTON, D.C. - With suicide rates among America's troops approaching a rate of one every day - far more than the number dying in action - Senator Murkowski today made a personal appeal to Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta and asked that he make it a top priority when he appeared before her in the Senate Defense Appropriations Subcommittee to discuss the Pentagon's FY2013 budget. (Senator Murkowski asks Secretary Panetta for urgency in dealing with military suicides) Senator Murkowski: I wi… Continue Reading


Murkowski Suggests Pentagon "Abandon" Eielson F-16 Plan

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Lisa Murkowski seized the opportunity of having the Secretary of Defense and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff before the Senate Defense Appropriations Subcommittee to lay out the wide range of Alaskan concerns and the potential shortcomings surrounding the United States Air Force proposal to move the F-16s from Eielson Air Force Base. She closed by explaining the valid reasons many in Alaska see this exercise as the beginning of a "Backdoor BRAC." Murkowski … Continue Reading


Murkowski Announces Richardson Highway Mobile Office Stops

WASHINGTON, D.C. - In an effort to advance her engagement efforts and connectivity with constituents, Senator Lisa Murkowski today announced that members of her staff will be visiting the communities of Salcha, Delta Junction, Tanacross, Tok, Chistachina, Gakona, Glennallen and Copper Center from June 18-21, 2012. Senator Murkowski's staff are holding mobile office hours throughout the summer to meet with constituents and community leaders. During their mobile office hours, staff representative… Continue Reading


Murkowski Comment on Transfer of Rock Creek Mine to Bering Straits Native Corp.

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, today congratulated the Bering Straits Native Corp. on its purchase of the Rock Creek Mine, outside of Nome, from NovaGold Resources. "The Bering Straits Native Corp. should be applauded for taking steps to develop the economy of the Nome region and create jobs for its shareholders," Murkowski said. "Resource extraction is often a job done by Outside companies, who take the lion's share of the profits out of Alaska. It's refreshing to see … Continue Reading


Murkowski to USPS: Step Up War on Drugs in Southeast Alaska

WASHINGTON, D.C. - As communities throughout Southeast Alaska report significant volumes of illegal drugs transported via the United States Postal Service (USPS), Senator Murkowski is asking the Postmaster General to address the matter, possibly by devoting additional US Postal Inspection Service resources to the area or increasing collaboration with local law enforcement agencies to reduce the flow of drugs into Southeast. In a letter, the Senator writes to the Postmaster General: "I am tol… Continue Reading


Murkowski to Conduct Tsunami Debris Aerial Survey

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Lisa Murkowski will join United States Coast Guard District 17 leadership this weekend and participate in a fly-over of the Gulf of Alaska and Prince William Sound to investigate the rising levels of debris along Alaska's shores due to the Japanese earthquake and tsunami in March 2011. "Before the debris began to close in on our shores, I held a tsunami debris roundtable in January to explore what is out there and whether the material poses any threat to Alaskans," s… Continue Reading


Murkowski Spotlights Financial Burden of Potential Eielson Move

WASHINGTON, D.C. - As Senator Lisa Murkowski continues to pursue answers surrounding the United States Air Force proposal to move the F-16 Aggressor squadron from Eielson Air Force Base, she is now challenging the Pentagon about the financial burdens such a move could impose on airmen. If the transfer takes place, it holds the potential to undercut the real estate market in Fairbanks while inflating property values surrounding Joint Base Elmendorf Richardson - with military personnel impacted … Continue Reading


On 99th Anniversary of Summit, Murkowski Requests Hearing on Bill to Name Ranger Station for Athabascan Climber

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, today commemorated the anniversary of the first man to summit the highest peak in North America by requesting a hearing on legislation to name the National Park Service Talkeetna Ranger Station for the late Walter Harper. "It's only fitting that we honor the memory of Alaska Native Walter Harper by forever linking his name with the Talkeetna ranger station," Murkowski said. "This bill is a small gesture but one that means a great deal to… Continue Reading


Murkowski Pushes for More Opportunities for Alaska’s Fishermen

WASHINGTON, D.C. - As the U.S. Senate begins consideration of S.3240, the Farm Bill, Senator Lisa Murkowski today filed an amendment to level the playing field for commercial fishermen, allowing them to compete for the same existing loan funds that fish farmers and traditional farmers compete for. "The Department of Agriculture considers fish an agriculture product, we allow fish farmers to be eligible for loans to help them buy equipment and supplies - so why won't we open the same door for … Continue Reading


Murkowski “Unconvinced” Federal Internet Policies Helping Rural Alaska’s Small Businesses

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Murkowski today challenged the Federal Communications Commission on whether reforms meant to help small rural telecommunication companies maintain service in Alaska truly address their unique needs or leave them "feeling on the ropes" and financially threatened. Murkowski took advantage of a hearing of the Senate Committee for Indian Affairs to bring these concerns to light with FCC Commissioner Mignon Clyburn. In her opening remarks (clip one), Senator Murkowski po… Continue Reading


Alaskans Deserve More Time to Comment on Watershed Assessment

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski and Rep. Don Young, both R-Alaska, today sent a letter to Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Lisa Jackson asking that the 60-day comment period on the Bristol Bay watershed assessment be extended to allow greater public participation during Alaska's traditionally busy summer months "We make this request after hearing from a large number of our constituents in Alaska, many of whom are concerned that the volume, scope, and importance of… Continue Reading


Murkowski, Young Welcome Settlement of Bering Straits Lands Claims

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, and Rep. Don Young, R-Alaska, today applauded passage by the full Congress of the Salmon Lake Land Selection Resolution Act, finalizing a settlement between the state of Alaska, the federal Bureau of Land Management and the Bering Straits Native Corp., and fulfilling a promise made in the 1971 Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (ANCSA). "It took more than 40 years, but today I'm happy to see that the Bering Straits land conveyance is h… Continue Reading


Murkowski Recognized As Leader Against Youth Obesity

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Lisa Murkowski today received the Campaign to End Obesity's "Breakfast of Champions" award for her consistent fight to raise and maintain nutrition standards for Alaskan school children - as well as adults statewide. She also received a box of cereal with her face on it at the event. (Below) Most recently, Senator Murkowski has been successful in her efforts to raise nutrition standards in school meals. For the first time in over thirty years, the U.S. Department of … Continue Reading


Alaska Senators Seek No Funding for Eielson F16 Move

In their continuing effort to get the U.S. Air Force to drop its proposal to move the 18th Aggressor Squadron from Eielson Air Force Base to Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson (JBER), U.S. Sens. Mark Begich and Lisa Murkowski are requesting no money be allocated for the move. In a letter to Sen. Daniel Inouye, Chairman of the Subcommittee on Defense in the Senate Appropriations Committee and Sen. Thad Cochran, Vice Chairman of the Committee, Begich and Murkowski request language be included in the… Continue Reading

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