Alaska’s health commissioner says his department didn’t intend to restrict the definition of a medically necessary abortion in proposed regulations for abortion payment conditions.
Commissioner Bill Streur was responding to Sen. Hollis French, who said the agency is seeking to reinstate criteria overturned by the Alaska Supreme Court.
The court held the state must fund medically necessary abortions if it funds medically necessary services for others with financial needs. A legal opinion requested by French said phrasing used in the proposal is narrower than current law, and “reasonably likely” to be found unconstitutional.
While French asked Streur withdraw the proposal, Streur said the department would determine, after reviewing all public comment, whether to make language changes.
Streur said a court would ultimately decide constitutionality if the adopted regulation were challenged.
- Stuart DeWitt, Nick Davis and Joe Thompson were inducted into the Gold Medal Hall of Fame.
- On Saturday at the Juneau Lions Club 71st Annual Gold Medal Basketball Tournament, Lion Steve Brandner was chosen as the recipient of the Walter A. Soboleff Achievement Award, the tournament’s highest honor.
- Shutting down the oil platforms will allow Hilcorp to reduce the amount of natural gas flowing in the leaking pipeline.
- The co-chairmen of the House Finance Committee revised their plans to introduce an income tax to Alaska for the first time in nearly four decades.