A U.S. Senator from Missouri is continuing her crackdown on the advantages Alaska Native Corporations enjoy in government contracting.
Sen. Claire McCaskill this week pressed the Small Business Administration to show that rules in place since 2011 are tightening requirements on ANCs and producing better oversight.
Since the 1980s, ANCs have won government contracts worth billions of dollars, through a program designed to allow small, minority-owned companies to contract for government work without competition. Other businesses in the program are limited to contracts of up to $4 million. Alaska Native corporations, though, can get sole-source contracts of any size, and they can work in joint venture with non-Native companies as long as the ANC owns 51%.
McCaskill has previously sponsored bills to remove those special advantages. She’s asking the SBA for a list of all such joint ventures since 2011, and for reports showing how Native communities benefitted from these contracts.
Alaska Sen. Mark Begich, in a press release, says he’s tried to reason with McCaskill, a fellow Democrat. But he says she doesn’t understand Alaska history. He says ANCs shouldn’t be punished for their success.
- Last week, the cruise ship Crystal Serenity sailed into Nome and 850 of the cruise ship’s passengers were ferried in from the offshore vessel and took the day to tour the city, but some business owners say their expectations for hypothetical increase in profits for the day weren’t met.
- New signage is being installed at Foodland IGA in downtown Juneau. Store director Rick Wilson anticipates the work will be done Tuesday afternoon.
- The city of Sitka announced Monday, Aug. 29, that the Gavan Hill area, including Keet Gooshi Heen Elementary School, may be at risk for landslides. Shannon & Wilson, a Seattle-based geotechnical firm, identified the landslide hazard zones during an assessment of the area.
- As of Monday, the Ketchikan Youth Facility slated for closure had seven kids in it and the Johnson Youth Center had four.