Opinion

U.S. Sen. Dan Sullivan addresses a joint session of the Alaska State Legislature in the House chambers on Feb. 7, 2023. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire file photo)

Opinion: Sen. Sullivan sinks to a new low

Last week, Sen. Dan Sullivan mimicked Donald Trump’s endless stream of baseless accusations that President Joe Biden has weaponized the justice system to bring him… Continue reading

 

Members of local business organizations greet cruise passengers with maps and other handouts as they disembark from the Norwegian Bliss on April 25, 2022. (Michael S. Lockett / Juneau Empire file photo)

A call for collaboration, not restrictions on cruise ship tourism

Please don’t sign. I feel it is time to speak up about the recent signature-gathering campaign aimed at banning cruise ships from visiting Juneau on… Continue reading

 

Juneau School District Superintendent Frank Hauser provides an overview of restructuring options being considered during a Community Budget Input Session at Thunder Mountain High School on Jan. 31. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire file photo)

Opinion: Smearing school board members and the superintendent is vindictive and destructive

A school consolidation plan announced by the Juneau School District (JSD) has drawn fire from a dissident group calling themselves Community Advocates for Responsible Education… Continue reading

 

(Juneau Empire file photo)

Letter: Gloomy predictions for ship-free days are a misleading scare tactic

“What? Only one day a week ship-free? Can’t we have Sundays too?” “How about four days a week ship-free?” We signature gatherers are hearing those… Continue reading

(Juneau Empire file photo)
(Juneau Empire file photo)

Letter: A day of rest from cruise ships is good for Juneau

A lot has been said about the Saturday free day from large cruise ships. What’s missing from the conversation is that a day of rest… Continue reading

(Juneau Empire file photo)
A Celebrity Cruises ship docks in Juneau on July 15, 2023. (Clarise Larson / Juneau Empire file photo)

My Turn: It is possible to be pro-tourism and believe Juneau is oversaturated with cruise ships

I originally came to town as a visitor over 30 years ago. I found a vibrant town and vibrant visitor industry. We are quickly approaching… Continue reading

A Celebrity Cruises ship docks in Juneau on July 15, 2023. (Clarise Larson / Juneau Empire file photo)
Juneau residents participate in a community mental health run, the Extra Tough 5K & 1 Mile Run, on Saturday, Oct. 12, 2019. The run was sponsored by National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Juneau. (Michael Penn / Juneau Empire file photo)

My Turn: Local resources and support to be aware of during Mental Health Awareness Month

Although it feels like it every month for us at the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Juneau, May is Mental Health Awareness Month. This… Continue reading

Juneau residents participate in a community mental health run, the Extra Tough 5K & 1 Mile Run, on Saturday, Oct. 12, 2019. The run was sponsored by National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Juneau. (Michael Penn / Juneau Empire file photo)
(City and Borough of Juneau photo)

My Turn: Property tax assessment and guardrails

The “money grab” by the CBJ Assessor’s Office is over with passage of new legislation this session. The CBJ is required to follow written assessment… Continue reading

(City and Borough of Juneau photo)
Apayauq Reitan, the first transgender woman to participate in the Iditarod, tells the House Education Committee on March 30, 2023, why she opposes a bill restricting transgender rights. (Mark Sabbatini/Juneau Empire file photo)

Opinion: The imaginary transgender sports crisis

“To the parents of the children of Alaska, know we will fight,” Rep. Jamie Allard (R-Anchorage) said in defense of her bill to ban transgender… Continue reading

Apayauq Reitan, the first transgender woman to participate in the Iditarod, tells the House Education Committee on March 30, 2023, why she opposes a bill restricting transgender rights. (Mark Sabbatini/Juneau Empire file photo)
The Delong Mountain Transportation System port, which delivers zinc from the Red Dog mine. (Alaska Industrial Development and Export Authority photo)

My Turn: The state’s economic development agency may be reined in

While the complexion of the next Legislature may be different, indications seem to suggest a transformation of the Alaska Industrial Development and Export Authority (AIDEA)… Continue reading

The Delong Mountain Transportation System port, which delivers zinc from the Red Dog mine. (Alaska Industrial Development and Export Authority photo)
Moving boxes in the Thunder Mountain High School library. (Photo provided by Jenny Thomas)

My Turn: School district should reevaluate hidden costs, rethink consolidation

Imagine that our school district was not being dismantled by a superintendent whose primary residence is listed in Anchorage, that community input was valued, and… Continue reading

Moving boxes in the Thunder Mountain High School library. (Photo provided by Jenny Thomas)
Kurt Vonnegut in 1965. (Photo from U.S. Library of Congress’s Prints and Photographs division)

My Turn: Kurt Vonnegut and the business of educating our children

Yesterday, I was looking over the usual Facebook stuff to see what was happening with my many Facebook friends as I do from time to… Continue reading

Kurt Vonnegut in 1965. (Photo from U.S. Library of Congress’s Prints and Photographs division)
Alaska Department of Education and Early Development Commissioner Deena Bishop and Gov. Mike Dunleavy discuss his veto of an education bill during a press conference March 15 at the Alaska State Capitol. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire file photo)

Opinion: On inflation aid for schools, Dunleavy is still kicking the can

Not quite a year ago, Gov. Mike Dunleavy vetoed more than $87 million in one-time public education funding approved by the legislature. Two months ago,… Continue reading

Alaska Department of Education and Early Development Commissioner Deena Bishop and Gov. Mike Dunleavy discuss his veto of an education bill during a press conference March 15 at the Alaska State Capitol. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire file photo)
Cruise ship passengers walk around in downtown Juneau in late May of 2023. (Clarise Larson / Juneau Empire file photo)

My Turn: Rejecting the cruise ban is essential for keeping Juneau a viable place to live

Another bad policy is being floated as a softer, gentler version of the cruise ship ban petition that failed two years ago. Don’t fall for… Continue reading

Cruise ship passengers walk around in downtown Juneau in late May of 2023. (Clarise Larson / Juneau Empire file photo)
Juneau Assembly members and city administrators meet to discuss budget matters involving the Juneau School District on Feb. 7. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire file photo)

Opinion: Assembly ignores voters, ramps up spending and taxes

Capital City citizens and businesses have endured double-digit increases in property taxes over the last several years, yet the Juneau Assembly is doubling down on… Continue reading

Juneau Assembly members and city administrators meet to discuss budget matters involving the Juneau School District on Feb. 7. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire file photo)
Mount Redoubt can be seen across Cook Inlet from North Kenai Beach on Thursday, July 2, 2022. (Erin Thompson/Peninsula Clarion file photo)

Opinion: Alaska might as well embrace the past

One proposal to solve the impending energy shortage for Alaska’s population centers is to go back in time. To the 1970s, when coal was king… Continue reading

Mount Redoubt can be seen across Cook Inlet from North Kenai Beach on Thursday, July 2, 2022. (Erin Thompson/Peninsula Clarion file photo)
A crowd overflows the library at Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé on Feb. 22 as school board members meet to consider proposals to address the Juneau School District’s budget crisis. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire file photo)

My Turn: Opportunity and time still exist to alter Juneau School District’s consolidation model

Community Advocates for Responsible Education (CARE) is a nonprofit focused on ensuring all students have access to a quality education. Families must choose between private,… Continue reading

A crowd overflows the library at Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé on Feb. 22 as school board members meet to consider proposals to address the Juneau School District’s budget crisis. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire file photo)
(Juneau Empire file photo)

Letter: People seeking Saturday cruise ship ban sending unfriendly message to visitors

I flew in on the midday flight this Saturday to do some work with the Legislature. Beautiful view of the Mendenhall Glacier coming in. The… Continue reading

(Juneau Empire file photo)
(Juneau Empire file photo)

My Turn: Take time to reflect and reach out during Mental Health Awareness Month

Upon reflection of growing up in the household that I did, I want to be mad at my father for the climate he created. But… Continue reading

(Juneau Empire file photo)
(Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities photo)

Opinion: The Alaska Marine Highway System’s battered reputation

“Before you can make a decision, you need information” Craig Tornga said while avoiding speculation about the future of the MV Matanuska. It’s been out… Continue reading

(Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities photo)