Democratic Sen. Hollis French is still slightly ahead of Republican challenger Bob Bell, for Senate District J in Anchorage.
The state Division of Elections counted more absentee ballots on Friday, giving French a 50-vote lead. At the end of the day, French had 7,572 votes to Bell’s 7,522 votes.
In another race Democrats were watching, totals remain unchanged for Anchorage House District 25. At the last ballot count on Tuesday, Republican Rep. Lance Pruitt led Rep. Pete Peterson, the Democrat, by 216 votes. Elections Director Gail Fenumiai says when the absentees are counted, there aren’t enough ballots to make up the large spread in that race.
It’s expected the Division of Elections will continue its count of absentee ballots Nov. 19 and Nov. 21.
- Sen. Kevin Meyer said his constituents oppose creating a new bureaucracy to collect an income tax when the Permanent Fund continues to pay dividends.
- Two dead squid have washed ashore in as many weeks, but it's unclear if these are unrelated incidents or a sign of something more significant.
- A GoFundMe appeal to help rebuild the Twin Lakes playground raised $4,625 in less than a day. But read the fine print: the website takes nearly 8 percent in fees.
- The fire marshal also noted no accelerants -- such as gasoline -- were used. He said the shredded rubber material on the playground became the fuel source.