Category - Op-Ed

Rep. Les Gara

It’s time for the Legislature to reverse the trend of declining school support

Public education matters because a student's opportunity to achieve matters. The Legislature has an opportunity to end years of continuing cuts to teachers, guidance and career counselors, teacher training, end even courses. We've lost over 500 teachers, counselors and education support staff in recent years. Bigger class sizes, demoralized teachers, and rolled back curriculum don't increase academic achievement.

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Rep. Louise Stutes

Opinion: HB 199 is not an anti-mine bill

I feel compelled to comment on a Feb. 4 Juneau Empire article that I was featured in titled “Local fishermen, mining companies divided over fish habitat.” A few days prior to the article, I had the opportunity to meet with a group of the local fishermen in support of my fish habitat permitting legislation, House Bill 199. This bill was drafted in response to a request by the Board of Fisheries that the Legislature update fish habitat permitting laws that have remained unchanged since statehood. The board cited a lack of enforceable standards and public input as weaknesses in the current law.

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Rep. Les Gara

OPINION: Here’s some real math to ponder in Alaska budget debate

Political soundbites that propose easy fixes to Alaska's massive budget deficit get votes. They'll also get you one of the worst recessions in Alaska history, and a state where your children can't find a job. You deserve real information instead of soundbites, so you can tell your legislators the path you prefer. Politicians who seek to get votes while the economy sinks are tempting to listen to, but they are doing you a disservice. We lost 9,000 jobs last year. Letting that continue isn't a future.

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“The House Majority supports this education based income tax as one part of the solution to grow a stable economy.”