The Alaska Legislature is getting a sleek new domain name for its website and email addresses.
As early as this week, when you type in the current address — www.legis.state.ak.us — you’ll be redirected to www.akleg.gov. The Legislative Council approved the change last week at a meeting in Anchorage.
Council Chair, Wasilla Senator Linda Menard said lawmakers wanted something shorter, and decided on the new address last year. But the council held off on approving it until after this year’s elections.
“After considerable consideration, deliberation and study, which included researching other state legislators email addresses, the IT subcommittee determined the AKLEG.gov is the best combination of a short and descriptive domain,” Menard said.
Curtis Clothier, Information Services Manager for the Legislative Affairs Agency, told the council that the old address dates back to when all state legislatures nationwide shared the same basic domain name conventions. He said most states have gone to shorter addresses, but that some still use the old domain.
Clothier said switching to the new address would be relatively easy for his staff, but lawmakers and aides would have to make sure to update their emails on various mailing lists.
“If you don’t do that, once the old address goes away, you’ll no longer get that email. On the good side, you’ll no longer get that spam that’s coming to your old address as well [laughter]. But there will be some things you’ll want to come. So, we’ll send out reminders to people and we’ll do education to try and make this as smooth as possible over the year,” Clothier said.
Clothier said he could keep the old address for as long as lawmakers deemed it necessary, but it would cost about $100 a year to keep the domain name registered. Representative Craig Johnson asked that it be maintained for ten years to avoid having it fall into the wrong hands. Clothier agreed that was probably a good idea, but said the legislature should switch to the new domain on business cards and stationary as soon as possible.
Legislative Council is a joint House and Senate committee that does the business of the legislature between sessions.