Rep. Kawasaki’s Newsletter: Oil Tax Credits a Bad Business Deal for the People of Alaska

With only 5 days left in the session, my colleagues and I in the Alaska Independent Democratic Coalition continue to push on our commitment for quality education, accessible health care, safe communities and a sustainable and comprehensive fiscal plan. Here’s an update on some fast-moving bills in the final days.

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NEWS: Alaska Independent Democratic Coalition Leader Praises Ruling Invalidating Anchorage LIO Lease

Juneau – Today, a Superior Court judge invalidated the Alaska Legislature’s expensive no-bid lease for the Anchorage Legislative Information Office. Alaska Independent Democratic Coalition (AIDC) Leader Rep. Chris Tuck (D-Anchorage) praised today’s ruling.

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Note from Rep. Gara: “Why I Didn’t Go On Any Legislative Trips This Summer” Newsletter

I’m proud that I’ve been frugal with your money. I’ve run the lowest cost office in the Legislature for many years, and in other years I’ve barely missed being the lowest cost office to an even cheaper legislator. Though in fairness, office costs include travel to Juneau for the Legislative Session, and Legislators from parts of rural Alaska have to ship their personal belongings to Juneau every year. They can’t avoid having much higher travel costs than someone who lives in Anchorage.

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Rep. Tarr’s Newsletter: NO to new office furniture, Welcome Bass Pro & AYEA Opportunity!

My colleagues and I find ourselves disappointed by the Republican Majority vote to increase spending to $500,000. We need to have functional offices for ourselves and our staff so we can serve our constituents, but I personally think that we have good options already. There is no need, in these tight fiscal times, to spend such an excessive amount of public funds on prettier chairs.

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NEWS: House Democrats Oppose Increased LIO Expenditure

House Democratic Leader Representative Chris Tuck (D-Anchorage) today reiterated his caucus’s position regarding yesterday’s Legislative Council vote to authorize increased spending on the Anchorage Legislative Information Office (LIO). 

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Note from Rep. Gara: That $4 Million Legislative Rent Increase: Not Again, Not Without Your Say

Dear Neighbors- As you know, I’m in that camp of folks who think the Legislature DID NOT NEED the new, fancy, and more importantly, expensive Anchorage off-session digs. Not at a price tag that raises our rent and utilities from roughly $680,000 a year to roughly $5 million a year. Not when this state is bleeding from deficits.

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NEWS: Gara, Wielechowski File Bill Requiring Public Input Before Major Legislative Office Rent Increases Allowed

JUNEAU – Today, Rep. Les Gara and Senator Bill Wielechowski (D-Anchorage) introduced legislation establishing a mandatory public commentary period before the legislature signs a binding “sole source” contract for new, expanded, or remodeled office as recently occurred in Anchorage in 2013.

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