NEWS: House Approves Bill Originally Crafted by the Late Rep. Max Gruenberg

Juneau – Today, the Alaska House of Representatives passed House Bill 273 to simplify, speed up, and lower the cost of vehicle transfers on death. HB 273 will allow a vehicle owner to file an application with the Alaska Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) to designate a beneficiary to take title of a vehicle upon the death of the owner. 

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PRESS AVAILABILITY: Alaska Independent Democratic Coalition Press Availability on Tuesday

Juneau – The Alaska Independent Democratic Coalition (AIDC) will hold a press availability Tuesday to introduce Rep. Ivy Spohnholz (D-Anchorage) as the newest member of the Alaska House of Representatives. AIDC Leader Rep. Chris Tuck (D-Anchorage) will also be available to answer questions on the progress of the 2nd Session of the 29th Alaska Legislature.

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NEWS: Alaska Independent Democratic Coalition Selects a New Minority Whip to Replace the Late Rep. Max Gruenberg

Juneau – The 13 members of the Alaska Independent Democratic Coalition (AIDC) have chosen Representative Sam Kito (D-Juneau) as the new Minority Whip. Rep. Kito replaces the late Rep. Max Gruenberg, who passed away last month while in office, as the Minority Whip. The Whip is the second highest leadership position within the Coalition.

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NEWS: Democrats in the Alaska House of Representatives Will Quickly Consider Governor Walker’s Choice for House District 16 State Representative

Juneau – The Democrats in the Alaska House of Representatives will meet as soon as possible to deliberate on Governor Walker’s choice of Ivy Spohnholz to replace the late Representative Max Gruenberg as the Representative for House District 16.

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NEWS: Life-Saving Legislation Passed to Help Respond to Epidemic of Heroin Use in Alaska

Juneau – Today, the Alaska House of Representatives passed Senate Bill 23 by a vote of 36-0. The bill, sponsored by Senator Johnny Ellis (D-Anchorage), passed the Alaska Senate last year by a vote of 19-1.

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NEWS: Lawmakers Applaud Today’s Superior Court Decision to Dismiss Ill-Advised Lawsuit Over Medicaid Expansion in Alaska

Juneau – Today, Superior Court Judge Frank Pfiffner issued a ruling in the case brought by the Alaska Legislative Council against Alaska Governor Bill Walker over his decision last year to expand Medicaid without legislative approval. Judge Pfiffner found that the Social Security Act requires Medicaid expansion, and that existing state law required Governor Walker to provide Medicaid to the group of Alaskans eligible for expansion. In his 26-page ruling, Judge Pfiffner granted the Governor’s motion for summary judgement and dismissed the case brought by the Alaska Legislative Council, which is made up of ten members of the Alaska Legislature.

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Note from Rep. Gara: Part 1 of 2: Public Testimony Coming Soon

I’m a little frazzled from having way less fun than you might think legislators have (prompt: eye roll because you all work hard too!). But I wanted to get you some information between hearings and meetings, and well, work.

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NEWS: Memorial Services Scheduled for Rep. Max Gruenberg

Juneau – Two memorial services have been scheduled for Representative Max Gruenberg, who passed away on Sunday at the age of 72.  The first memorial service will be held at 3 p.m. on Sunday, February 21 at the Resurrection Lutheran Church in Juneau.  The second memorial service will be held at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, February 25 at Temple Beth Sholom in Anchorage.  The public is invited to attend the memorial services to show their respect for Rep. Gruenberg.

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