This Day in Juneau History: March 12, 1987

On March 12, 1987, Alaska Supreme Court Justice Jay Rabinowitz defended the state courts when speaking before the Alaska House and Senate. In Juneau, claims were made against Rabinowitz that he had been stopping cases related to legislation so that the courts would have more funding from the state. Rabinowitz, after admitting he did ask lawmakers for a better court budget than the one proposed by Gov. Steve Cowper, said that he did not and was not thinking of altering the order of legislation cases to put legislators in his favor. He also noted that with Gov. Cowper’s proposed budget, the courts would lose 10 percent of the system’s $39 million annual budget, which would mean the loss of 105 of the available 498 employees, not including judges.

Former Alaska state trooper Arthur English was named Gov. Cowper’s new public safety head. English was set to replace acting commissioner William Nix.

The National Wildlife Federation called the U.S. Congress on Thursday to call a new Arctic National Wildlife Reserve study on whether it should be opened for oil development. The organization wanted to set up an independent commission to get a thorough, rational opinion outside of the Interior Department.

“This Day in Juneau History” is compiled by Empire freelancer Tasha Elizarde, who sums up the day’s events — 30 years ago — by perusing Empire archives.

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