The 28th session of the Alaska State Legislature is underway.
Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell gaveled in the House of Representatives and the Senate on Tuesday then administered the oath of office to 59 House and Senate members. Juneau Sen. Dennis Egan did not have to stand for re-election after redistricting. Twelve legislators have not previously served.
The first day of the 90-day session is largely ceremonial. And Treadwell took time to note a one-hundredth year milestone for Alaska.
“Come March 3 of this year, it will be a century that the Alaska Legislature, beginning in territorial times, has convened to carry out the democratic ideal of protecting the liberty, promoting the health, welfare, safety, education and prosperity of Alaskans. You, the group just sworn in, are the centennial class of the Alaska Legislature.”
Some committees begin their work on Wednesday, but the big event is Gov. Sean Parnell’s State of the State speech at 7 p.m.
Parnell will address a joint session of the House and the Senate for the fourth time as governor. Gavel Alaska and KTOO Radio will provide live coverage of the speech.
On the way to the governor’s speech, don’t forget Juneau’s 28th Annual Legislative Welcome Reception from 5 – 6:30 p.m. at Centennial Hall.
It’s a chance for Juneau residents to greet new and returning legislators, family and staff.
The Alaska Committee, Juneau Chamber of Commerce, Juneau Convention and Visitors Bureau, City and Borough and many local businesses and individuals contribute to the event.
- Plans for managing the nation's largest national forest call for changes in timber harvests that one critic says will be "the demise of the timber industry."
- President Obama today issued an executive order creating the “Northern Bering Sea Climate Resilience Area” of 112,300 square miles.
- As the blue king crab population crashes, fishermen on St. Paul Island face more restrictions to reduce bycatch. But the rules to protect the crab also make it difficult to do research on the species.
- The office of House Speaker Paul Ryan announced Wednesday there was no time left to pass an energy bill, according to the publication The Hill.