NEWS: House Advances Legislation to Help Grow Alaska’s Mariculture Industry

Juneau – Today, the Alaska House of Representatives passed two bills to expand existing frameworks to better manage Alaska’s fledgling mariculture industry. House Bill 76 fills a critical gap in capital need for infrastructure development of mariculture operations. It amends the current program to allow up to 40 percent of the fund to be used for loans to permitted hatcheries and enhancement projects for planning, construction and operation. House Bill 128 would allow non-profits to pursue enhancement and restoration projects with oversight by the Alaska Department of Fish and Game. Both bills are sponsored by Representative Dan Ortiz (I-Ketchikan).

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NEWS: Optometry & Optometrists Bill Passes Alaska House

Juneau – For over 40 years, optometrists and ophthalmologists have been sparring over statutes that govern eye health care for Alaskans. Today, the Alaska House of Representative passed legislation that updates antiquated statutes regulating licenses of optometry and the Board of Examiners of Optometry. HB 103, sponsored by Representative Ivy Spohnholz (D-Anchorage), seeks to improve and update the statutes that govern the board by allowing them to regulate their standards of practice similar to other boards with prescriptive authority (e.g. dentists, nurses, and doctors). The bill also allows the Board of Examiners of Optometry to set the continuing education requirements for a licensee to continue to practice.

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NEWS: House Passes Legislation to Honor Hmong and Laotian Veterans

Juneau – The Alaska House of Representatives passed legislation today to honor Hmong and Laotian soldiers who fought as allies to the United States during the Vietnam War. House Bill 125, sponsored by Representative Geran Tarr (D-Anchorage), authorizes a special designation for Hmong and Laotian veterans on state-issued IDs and driver’s licenses.

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NEWS: Alaska House Passes Legislation to Support Alaska Manicurists

Juneau – Today, the Alaska House of Representatives passed legislation sponsored by Representative Matt Claman (D-Anchorage) to repeal harmful statutes which disadvantage small Alaska businesses. House Bill 222 removes unreasonable and unnecessary manicurist licensing requirements; allowing experienced manicurists to continue to practice without re-taking a training course as part of their license renewal.

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NEWS: Alaska Legislature Passes Legislation to Insure Survivors of Public Servants Killed In the Line of Duty

Juneau – Today, legislation to extend healthcare coverage to the families of peace officers and firefighters killed in the line of duty officially passed the Alaska State Legislature. House Bill 23, sponsored by Representative Andy Josephson (D-Anchorage), passed the Alaska House of Representatives on a unanimous vote in March and a slightly different version of the bill passed the Alaska State Senate last week by a vote of 19-0. The Alaska House formally concurred with the Senate changes to the bill earlier today.

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NEWS: Energy Efficiency Legislation Approved By the Alaska Legislature

Juneau – The Alaska State Legislature has passed legislation sponsored by Representative Adam Wool (D-Fairbanks) to help lower energy costs for commercial property owners across Alaska. House Bill 80 allows cities and boroughs to create a Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing mechanism for loans for alternative energy and energy efficiency improvements.

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NEWS: House Resources Advances Legislation to Allow Municipalities to Regulate Trapping

Juneau – Legislation advanced out of the House Resources Committee today to allow municipalities in Alaska to establish their own rules to control trapping. House Bill 201, sponsored by Representative Andy Josephson (D-Anchorage), limits municipal regulations to the limited purpose of preventing injuries to people and domestic animals.

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Rep. Spohnholz’s Newsletter: Comprehensive Fiscal Plan Has Passed the House

On this 90th Day of the Legislative Session, I am pleased to report that the Alaska House Majority Coalition has passed all four pillars of our comprehensive, sustainable and fair fiscal plan for Alaska. The tough votes I have made over the last month were not easy to make but I strongly be believe that they are necessary to protect Alaska’s future.

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