Alaska Legislature

From left to right: Sens. Jesse Kiehl, D-Juneau; Gary Stevens, R-Kodiak; Mia Costello, R-Anchorage, and Bert Stedman, R-Sitka, speak on the floor of the Alaska Senate on Monday, May 24, 2021, the first day of one of two special sessions called by Gov. Mike Dunleavy. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
From left to right: Sens. Jesse Kiehl, D-Juneau; Gary Stevens, R-Kodiak; Mia Costello, R-Anchorage, and Bert Stedman, R-Sitka, speak on the floor of the Alaska Senate on Monday, May 24, 2021, the first day of one of two special sessions called by Gov. Mike Dunleavy. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
House Speaker Rep. Louise Stutes, R-Kodiak, left, and House Finance Committee co-chair Rep. Neal Foster, D-Nome, speak with reporters at the Alaska State Capitol on Thursday, May 20, 2021. The Alaska State Legislature worked until past midnight Wednesday on the state’s budget bill which will now be negotiated in committee. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
House Speaker Rep. Louise Stutes, R-Kodiak, left, and House Finance Committee co-chair Rep. Neal Foster, D-Nome, speak with reporters at the Alaska State Capitol on Thursday, May 20, 2021. The Alaska State Legislature worked until past midnight Wednesday on the state’s budget bill which will now be negotiated in committee. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
Senate President Peter Micciche, R-Soldotna, spoke to reporters in his office on Thursday, May 20, 2021, to discuss next steps after the Senate debated the state budget until just before midnight the night before. Senators voted for a Permanent Fund Dividend of $2,300, the largest in history, but negotiations with the House of Representatives are still to come. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
Senate President Peter Micciche, R-Soldotna, spoke to reporters in his office on Thursday, May 20, 2021, to discuss next steps after the Senate debated the state budget until just before midnight the night before. Senators voted for a Permanent Fund Dividend of $2,300, the largest in history, but negotiations with the House of Representatives are still to come. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
Rep. Tiffany Zulkosky, D-Bethel, urges her colleagues to vote for a bill to have the state recognize the Alaska’s 229 already federally recognized tribes on Wednesday, May 19, 2021. The bill was one of dozens heard Wednesday as lawmakers tried to pass as much legislation on the last day of the legislative session. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
Rep. Tiffany Zulkosky, D-Bethel, urges her colleagues to vote for a bill to have the state recognize the Alaska’s 229 already federally recognized tribes on Wednesday, May 19, 2021. The bill was one of dozens heard Wednesday as lawmakers tried to pass as much legislation on the last day of the legislative session. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
Members of the Senate Finance Committee discussed the state's capital budget bill in a meeting on Monday, May 17, 2021, but it's not clear when it might be debated on the floor. Lawmakers had been pushing to finish the bill before May 19, but a special session from the governor has given them more time. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
Members of the Senate Finance Committee discussed the state's capital budget bill in a meeting on Monday, May 17, 2021, but it's not clear when it might be debated on the floor. Lawmakers had been pushing to finish the bill before May 19, but a special session from the governor has given them more time. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
Masks were made optional in the Alaska House of Representatives on Friday, May 14, 2021, but lawmakers are still trying to get their work done. Gov. Mike Dunleavy called two special sessions Thursday, but the proposal was met with mixed reactions. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
Masks were made optional in the Alaska House of Representatives on Friday, May 14, 2021, but lawmakers are still trying to get their work done. Gov. Mike Dunleavy called two special sessions Thursday, but the proposal was met with mixed reactions. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
Peter Segall / Juneau Empire
Sen. Dan Sullivan, R-Alaska, gave his annual address to the Alaska State Legislature on May 3, 2021, but some Democratic lawmakers said the speech brought the partisanship of Washington D.C. to Alaska.
Peter Segall / Juneau Empire
Sen. Dan Sullivan, R-Alaska, gave his annual address to the Alaska State Legislature on May 3, 2021, but some Democratic lawmakers said the speech brought the partisanship of Washington D.C. to Alaska.
Gov. Mike Dunleavy, said at this Wednesday, May 12, 2021 news conference there may be a special session of the Alaska Legislautre. On Thursday he officially called two, one for late May and one for early August. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
Gov. Mike Dunleavy, said at this Wednesday, May 12, 2021 news conference there may be a special session of the Alaska Legislautre. On Thursday he officially called two, one for late May and one for early August. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
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State Senate majority leader’s bill would bar transgender girls from female sports

Bill would require participation in a sport to be based on the participant’s sex assigned at birth.

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Rep. Andy Josephson, D-Anchorage, speaks to his concerns about Gov. Mike Dunleavy's appointment of Treg Taylor of Attorney General during a joint session of the Alaska State Legislature on Tuesday, May 11, 2021. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
Rep. Andy Josephson, D-Anchorage, speaks to his concerns about Gov. Mike Dunleavy's appointment of Treg Taylor of Attorney General during a joint session of the Alaska State Legislature on Tuesday, May 11, 2021. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
Alaska House Speaker Louise Stutes, a Kodiak Republican, looks out on the floor of the Alaska House on Monday, May 10, 2021, in Juneau, Alaska. The Alaska House on Monday resumed debate on a version of the state operating budget. (AP Photo / Becky Bohrer, Pool)

House passes budget; dividend amount unsettled

By Becky Bohrer Associated Press The Alaska House passed a version of the state operating budget Monday that leaves for later debate over how much… Continue reading

Alaska House Speaker Louise Stutes, a Kodiak Republican, looks out on the floor of the Alaska House on Monday, May 10, 2021, in Juneau, Alaska. The Alaska House on Monday resumed debate on a version of the state operating budget. (AP Photo / Becky Bohrer, Pool)
Lawmakers took a brief break from an all-day floor session Monday, May 10, 2021, when a plexiglass divider around a lawmakers desk fell over. Debate on the state's operating budget bill covered a range of political issues beyond just funding. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
Lawmakers took a brief break from an all-day floor session Monday, May 10, 2021, when a plexiglass divider around a lawmakers desk fell over. Debate on the state's operating budget bill covered a range of political issues beyond just funding. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
The Alaska House of Representatives, seen here on Friday, May 7, 2021, is scheduled to meet early Monday morning to finalize budget bills before the end of the legislative session in about two weeks. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
The Alaska House of Representatives, seen here on Friday, May 7, 2021, is scheduled to meet early Monday morning to finalize budget bills before the end of the legislative session in about two weeks. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
In this Empire file photo, an Alaska Marine Highway ferry is docked at the Auke Bay terminal in Juneau. A bill recently passed by the House of Representatives would create a new governing board, hopefully bringing stability to the ailing system. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire file)
In this Empire file photo, an Alaska Marine Highway ferry is docked at the Auke Bay terminal in Juneau. A bill recently passed by the House of Representatives would create a new governing board, hopefully bringing stability to the ailing system. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire file)
House Minority Leader Rep. Cathy Tilton, R-Wasilla, seen here speaking with Rep. David Eastman, R-Wasilla, speak in the hall of the Alaska State Capitol on Feb. 16, 2021, said the minority caucus is working on proposals for the annual Permanent Fund Dividend. The Legislature is approaching the end of the session, but has yet to allocate an amount for a PFD. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
House Minority Leader Rep. Cathy Tilton, R-Wasilla, seen here speaking with Rep. David Eastman, R-Wasilla, speak in the hall of the Alaska State Capitol on Feb. 16, 2021, said the minority caucus is working on proposals for the annual Permanent Fund Dividend. The Legislature is approaching the end of the session, but has yet to allocate an amount for a PFD. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
A page in the Alaska House of Representatives hands out copies of a budget bill over 100 pages long on Friday, April 30, 2021. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire
A page in the Alaska House of Representatives hands out copies of a budget bill over 100 pages long on Friday, April 30, 2021. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire
Members of the Alaska House of Representatives spent hours in floor sessions Saturday and Sunday inside the Alaska State Capitol, seen here on Monday, April 26, 2021. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
Members of the Alaska House of Representatives spent hours in floor sessions Saturday and Sunday inside the Alaska State Capitol, seen here on Monday, April 26, 2021. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
Sen. Bert Stedman, R-Sitka, speaks to Sen. Lyman Hoffman, D-Bethel, before a floor session to debate a bill over a disaster declaration in the state on Wednesday, April 28, 2021. The debate would take lawmakers into the evening Wednesday, as over 40 amendments were submitted on the bill. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)

Disaster debate drags out in Senate

Even if bill advances, governor might not sign it.

Sen. Bert Stedman, R-Sitka, speaks to Sen. Lyman Hoffman, D-Bethel, before a floor session to debate a bill over a disaster declaration in the state on Wednesday, April 28, 2021. The debate would take lawmakers into the evening Wednesday, as over 40 amendments were submitted on the bill. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
The Alaska State Capitol remained closed to the public on Monday, April 26, 2021, but with high rates of vaccinations among staff, lawmakers have relaxed some of the health rules in place since the start of the session in January. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
The Alaska State Capitol remained closed to the public on Monday, April 26, 2021, but with high rates of vaccinations among staff, lawmakers have relaxed some of the health rules in place since the start of the session in January. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
Sen. Lora Reinbold, R-Eagle River, holds a news conference in front of the doors to the Senate chambers on Thursday, March 4, 2021. Reinbold has been banned from Alaska Airlines flights for refusing to comply with the airline’s mask [policy. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire File)

Airline bans Reinbold for violating mask rules

Alaska Airlines has banned an Alaska state senator for refusing to follow mask requirements. “We have notified Senator Lora Reinbold that she is not permitted… Continue reading

Sen. Lora Reinbold, R-Eagle River, holds a news conference in front of the doors to the Senate chambers on Thursday, March 4, 2021. Reinbold has been banned from Alaska Airlines flights for refusing to comply with the airline’s mask [policy. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire File)