JUNEAU — Mayors across Alaska are asking the Legislature to solve the state’s multibillion-dollar deficit during next month’s special session.
The Juneau Empire reports that the Alaska Municipal League and Alaska Conference of Mayors wrote the state Legislature on Wednesday asking for progress. This is the third year in a row that the mayors have pleaded to state officials about the deficit.
Fairbanks North Star Borough Mayor Karl Kassel said the mayors know that if the Legislature doesn’t act, costs will be passed to their cities and boroughs. They, in return, will have to pass those costs via property taxes and sales taxes to residents.
Kassel said this has already happened in some areas, particularly school debt reimbursement.
- With a surge in vehicle thefts in Anchorage, some residents are taking matters into their own hands. One group mobilizing through Facebook is reuniting stolen vehicles with their owners. Members of the A Team, as they call themselves, say they are filling a void left by overworked police.
- The Haines area used to be a Tlingit stronghold, ruled by an alliance between the prosperous Chilkat and Chilkoot people. A new Haines Sheldon Museum exhibit explores how the Native territory gradually gave way to white settlement in the late 1800s. The exhibit will anchor the museum’s upstairs space for at least two years.
- "If this technology goes the way that leading experts are predicting, we could see the entire corridor as a freeway could be autonomous by 2040,” said transportation consultant Scott Kuznicki.
- Concerns over animal welfare have led to changes in recent years in how livestock are raised. But seafood has been missing from the conversation. One group aims to change that.