Alaska Legislature

Even as coronavirus numbers are going down and vaccines are being distributed, pandemic-related facilities like the testing site at Juneau International Airport, seen here in this Oct. 12 file photo, are scheduled to remain for some time, according to city health officials. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire file)

Vaccines are coming, but pandemic facilities will remain

Testing sites and other COVID-19 operations will continue, officials say, but infections are trending down.

Even as coronavirus numbers are going down and vaccines are being distributed, pandemic-related facilities like the testing site at Juneau International Airport, seen here in this Oct. 12 file photo, are scheduled to remain for some time, according to city health officials. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire file)
Staff pass through a COVID-19 screening checkpoint set up on the ground floor of the Alaska State Capitol on Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2021. The new session of the Alaska State Legislature starts Jan. 19, and some lawmakers and their staff have already arrived in Juneau. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)

New Legislature, same issues, says Juneau’s delegation

Alaska’s perennial problems are likely to dominate the session that starts next week, lawmakers say.

Staff pass through a COVID-19 screening checkpoint set up on the ground floor of the Alaska State Capitol on Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2021. The new session of the Alaska State Legislature starts Jan. 19, and some lawmakers and their staff have already arrived in Juneau. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
Rep. Jennifer Johnston, R-Anchorage, gets her temperature taken as she enters the Alaska State Capitol on Monday, May 18, 2020. New policies will require all staff and legislators to wear masks in chambers. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire File)

Legislative Council sets mask policy for upcoming session

Only one representative out of twelve legislators voted against the mask policy.

Rep. Jennifer Johnston, R-Anchorage, gets her temperature taken as she enters the Alaska State Capitol on Monday, May 18, 2020. New policies will require all staff and legislators to wear masks in chambers. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire File)
Ben Hohenstatt / Juneau Empire File
The U.S. Flag and Alaska state flag fly on the roof of the Alaska State Capitol on Oct. 17. With just over a month before legislative session is set to begin, some lawmakers are waiting to lock down digs. One factor: uncertainty about how — and for how long — lawmakers plan to meet.
Ben Hohenstatt / Juneau Empire File
The U.S. Flag and Alaska state flag fly on the roof of the Alaska State Capitol on Oct. 17. With just over a month before legislative session is set to begin, some lawmakers are waiting to lock down digs. One factor: uncertainty about how — and for how long — lawmakers plan to meet.
The Alaska State Capitol on Wednesday, Nov. 4, 2020. The state’s emergency declaration for COVID-19 ends Nov. 15, and lawmakers have asked Gov. Mike Dunleavy to call a special session to extend it. Dunleavy issued a second emergency declaration Friday but some lawmakers have said that violates state law. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
The Alaska State Capitol on Wednesday, Nov. 4, 2020. The state’s emergency declaration for COVID-19 ends Nov. 15, and lawmakers have asked Gov. Mike Dunleavy to call a special session to extend it. Dunleavy issued a second emergency declaration Friday but some lawmakers have said that violates state law. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
Sen. John Coghill, R-North Pole, expresses his sadness about the effect the budget will have on his community during a Joint Session of Alaska Legislature at the Capitol on Thursday, July 11, 2019. A recount has affirmed Cohhill lost a tight primary race. (Michael Penn / Juneau Empire File)
Sen. John Coghill, R-North Pole, expresses his sadness about the effect the budget will have on his community during a Joint Session of Alaska Legislature at the Capitol on Thursday, July 11, 2019. A recount has affirmed Cohhill lost a tight primary race. (Michael Penn / Juneau Empire File)
Primary results suggest likely Legislature leadership shakeup
Primary results suggest likely Legislature leadership shakeup
Lawmakers dive back into work
Lawmakers dive back into work
Senate Minority Leader Tom Begich, D-Anchorage, House Minority Leader Lance Pruitt, R-Anchorage, Speaker of the House Bryce Edgmon, I-Dillingham, and Senate President Cathy Giessel, R-Anchorage, speak at the Alaska Chamber’s Legislative Fly-In, Wednesday. (Ben Hohenstatt | Juneau Empire)

Alaska lawmakers vow this year will be different than last year’s fiasco

Legislative leaders from all parties say they want to work together and finish on time.

Senate Minority Leader Tom Begich, D-Anchorage, House Minority Leader Lance Pruitt, R-Anchorage, Speaker of the House Bryce Edgmon, I-Dillingham, and Senate President Cathy Giessel, R-Anchorage, speak at the Alaska Chamber’s Legislative Fly-In, Wednesday. (Ben Hohenstatt | Juneau Empire)
House Speaker Bryce Edgmon, I-Dillingham, looks on as Juneau Alaska Music Matters students from Glacier Valley School and singers from Sayéik: Gastineau Community School perform “Alaska’s Flag” on Tuesday.(Peter Segall | Juneau Empire)
House Speaker Bryce Edgmon, I-Dillingham, looks on as Juneau Alaska Music Matters students from Glacier Valley School and singers from Sayéik: Gastineau Community School perform “Alaska’s Flag” on Tuesday.(Peter Segall | Juneau Empire)
Rep. Chuck Kopp, R-Anchorage, listens during a House floor session Sunday, July 21, 2019. (Ben Hohenstatt | Juneau Empire)
Rep. Chuck Kopp, R-Anchorage, listens during a House floor session Sunday, July 21, 2019. (Ben Hohenstatt | Juneau Empire)
Capitol Live: House ‘Reverse sweep’ vote falls short
Capitol Live: House ‘Reverse sweep’ vote falls short
Legislators use ‘symbolic’ vote to deliver verbal smackdown to vetoes
Legislators use ‘symbolic’ vote to deliver verbal smackdown to vetoes
Capitol Live: Veto override vote fails
Capitol Live: Veto override vote fails
Even ‘right-leaning’ groups, bankers and builders are calling for an override
Even ‘right-leaning’ groups, bankers and builders are calling for an override
Senate Finance member Sen. Click Bishop, R-Fairbanks, center, studies the FY20 Budget during a Senate Finance Committee meeting at the Capitol on Tuesday, July 9, 2019. Sen. Gary Stevens, R-Kodiak, left, and Sen. Chris Birch, R-Anchorage, right, listen in the background. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire)
Senate Finance member Sen. Click Bishop, R-Fairbanks, center, studies the FY20 Budget during a Senate Finance Committee meeting at the Capitol on Tuesday, July 9, 2019. Sen. Gary Stevens, R-Kodiak, left, and Sen. Chris Birch, R-Anchorage, right, listen in the background. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire)
Capitol Live: There may not be enough lawmakers in Juneau to override vetoes
Capitol Live: There may not be enough lawmakers in Juneau to override vetoes
Special session starts with a manic Monday
Special session starts with a manic Monday
Freshman legislators Sen. Jesse Kiehl, D-Juneau; Rep. Andi Story, D-Juneau; and Rep. Sara Hannan, D-Juneau; reflected on what’s happened so far during a regular and special session and what they’re looking forward to working on next. (Michael Penn| Juneau Empire File)
Freshman legislators Sen. Jesse Kiehl, D-Juneau; Rep. Andi Story, D-Juneau; and Rep. Sara Hannan, D-Juneau; reflected on what’s happened so far during a regular and special session and what they’re looking forward to working on next. (Michael Penn| Juneau Empire File)
University of Alaska President Jim Johnsen in 2017. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire File)
University of Alaska President Jim Johnsen in 2017. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire File)