NEWS: Significant Step Forward on Long-Awaited King Cove Road

Juneau – Today, the U.S. House of Representatives passed legislation sponsored by Congressman Don Young to allow a land exchange as part of the effort to build a road to connect the communities of King Cove and Cold Bay on the Alaska Peninsula. Speaker of the House Rep. Bryce Edgmon (D-Dillingham) released the following statement upon learning the results of today’s vote.

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NEWS: Alaska Legislature Passes Legislation to Ensure Safe Standards for Eye Care

Juneau – Today, the Alaska State Senate joined the Alaska House of Representatives in approving legislation to update state statutes and standards for optometrists and ophthalmologists. House Bill 103, sponsored by Representative Ivy Spohnholz (D-Anchorage), allows the Board of Examiners of Optometry to use their professional expertise to regulate their profession in Alaska similar to how other professions are regulated. Additionally, the bill allows the board to set continuing education requirements for licensees in Alaska.

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NEWS: Rep. Edgmon Concerned with Settlement of Pebble Mine Lawsuit

Juneau – Representative Bryce Edgmon (D-Dillingham) has released the following statement in response to the settlement of a lawsuit between the Environmental Protection Agency and the developer of the proposed Pebble Mine. The settlement forces the EPA to back off from its finding under the Clean Water act that a mine would do severe damage to the Bristol Bay watershed, fish, and wildlife. The settlement also sets a deadline for the Pebble Limited Partnership to apply for permits to develop a large gold, copper, and molybdenum mine on state owned land north of Lake Iliamna in the Bristol Bay region.

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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: Sexual Assault Kit Protocol Bill Unanimously Passes the Alaska House

Juneau – Today, the Alaska House of Representatives passed House Bill 31, an important public safety measure that will continue efforts to reform Alaska’s broken system of processing sexual examination kits. The legislation, sponsored by Representative Geran Tarr (D-Anchorage), also offers multiple victim-centered reporting options.

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NEWS: Alaska House of Representatives Passes Legislation to extend Governor Walker’s Opioid Epidemic Disaster Declaration

Juneau – Today, the Alaska House of Representatives unanimously approved Senate Bill 91 to extend the current disaster declaration for the opioid epidemic in Alaska. The bill gives Alaska’s Chief Medical Officer needed statutory authority to proceed with the planned statewide response to the opioid epidemic.

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NEWS: Rep. Tarr to Host Alaska Food Security Week Across the State

Juneau – Starting Monday, Representative Geran Tarr (D-Anchorage) will host events across the state for the third annual Alaska Food Security Week. The theme is “All About Alaska Grown” and will celebrate local food producers, Alaska’s agricultural history, and future opportunities for increasing the state’s local food initiatives.

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