Category - Rep. Les Gara

Rep. Gara Newsletter

Note from Rep. Gara: Safer Streets, Better Schools

Please join me for a Neighborhood Forum this Wednesday, September 28th from 7 to 9:00 p.m. at Central Middle School. Share your thoughts, and let’s talk about the issues that concern you most. I and Tax Division Director Ken Alper will present some information on our staggering deficit, as well as the options for action that must be taken to fix it. And let's talk schools, public safety, and what you want to see for this state and the next generation.

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Rep. Gara Newsletter

Note from Rep. Gara: Safer Streets, Better Schools

We have all been shaken by a crime spree that has made many people feel unsafe across Anchorage. The same holds true for many communities across Alaska. While police protection is largely a city issue, and I believe the Mayor wants to address the issue, there is a state role for state legislators too. I was not, and am not, happy with legislation passed last year by conservative leaders that massively cut the amount of help communities receive from the state for things like police and firefighters. Public safety isn't free, and I voted against that legislation, which will cut the help Anchorage receives for these basic services by roughly 67%, or $9 million over two years.

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Rep. Gara Newsletter

Note from Rep. Gara: Foster Youth Mentors Needed At Big Brothers/Sisters; Adoptive & Foster Parents Needed Too

I consider it good news when there are ways to help people. Many years ago, when I started working to improve our foster care system, I listened to youth, and learned I had it all wrong. Or partially wrong. One thing they made clear was that foster care isn't all about, well, just improving the foster care system. It's about what happens when a youth leaves the system, has no reliable parent, and has no reliable adult to turn to for advice. In prior years statistics have shown high post-foster care homelessness (approx. 35%) and incarceration rates (approx. 20%) and we all want to do better.

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Rep. Gara Newsletter

Note from Rep. Gara: Public Testimony Tomorrow: Oil Company Subsidy

Tomorrow the House Rules Committee, which normally does not hold hearings, is holding public and oil industry testimony on a new version of the Governor’s bill to reduce oil & gas company “tax credit” subsidies. The Governor’s original bill included a modest tax increase to generate needed revenue in his bill, and much of that has been eliminated in the Rules Committee version of the bill.

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Rep. Gara Newsletter

Note from Rep. Gara: Oil Tax & Subsidy Bill: Corporate Largesse, Much Fixing To Do. Oh, and One Good Bill For Kids

I’m tired. I’m working hard to smile and not let this thing called politics make me cranky. That’s to say, I hope this E-News update is written in at least marginally decent English. And I apologize I’ve been AWOL on newsletters recently! Here’s some good and bad and hopeful news on two important issues you may want to know about.

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