Turnout in last month’s Alaska statewide primary appears to be the lowest in a decade at 25.34 percent.
That’s the lowest primary turnout since 2002.
This year’s primary didn’t have a high-profile race. Past years, such as 2008 when 40.6 percent turned out, included a hotly contested Republican U.S. House race. In the 2010 primary for U.S. Senate and House and the governor’s office, turnout was 33.7 percent.
Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell certified the Aug. 28 statewide primary election on Monday.
Ballot Measure 2, which would have re-established a coastal management program in the state, was soundly defeated, but official election results show Ballot Measure 1 won by a slight edge.
The measure would make it legal for local governments to exempt the first $50,000 worth of a homeowner’s property from taxes. Currently, local governments can exempt up to $20,000 of the value of owner-occupied housing from property taxes, with voter approval.
Results show 61,804 votes in favor of Ballot Measure 1 and 61,495 against. Recount request must be received by the end of the week.
- Juneau Finance Director Bob Bartholomew projected Gov. Bill Walker’s veto of about half of dividend funds will cost the city.
- Only three votes now separate two northern Alaska House candidates. Dean Westlake of Kotzebue has 780 votes, ahead of 777 votes for incumbent Rep. Ben Nageak, who’s from Barrow.
- Bus passes, child-care assistance, work clothing and other resources to get low-income tribal members into jobs are being cut in seven Southeast Communities..
- The U.S. Northern Command and Coast Guard have launched a major field-training exercise off Alaska’s northwest coast. Arctic Chinook is intended to demonstrate how local, state and federal agencies would respond to a simulated cruise ship accident. Coincidentally, a big luxury cruise ship will sail through the area while the exercise is under way. And to further complicate things, bad weather has just set in.