NEWS: Responsible Budget Passes the Alaska House of Representatives

JUNEAU – The Alaska House of Representatives today formally passed a fully funded operating budget for Fiscal Year 2018 that ensures the delivery of essential services and protects the Alaska economy. The $5.1 billion General Fund operating budget reduces spending on agency and statewide operations by a net of $82.5 million compared to the 2017 budget, even after Governor Bill Walker’s vetoes.

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NEWS: Energy Efficiency Legislation Approved By the Alaska House of Representatives

Rep. Adam Wool

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

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NEWS: Representative Adam Wool Applauds Governor Walker’s Veto of Credit History for Insurance Rate Bill

Rep. Adam Wool

Fairbanks — Representative Adam Wool (D-Fairbanks) released the following statement on Governor Walker’s veto of Senate Bill 127:

“Alaskans shouldn’t have to fear that when their insurance is renewed, their rates might go up based on their credit history. It doesn’t make sense to change someone’s insurance rates on this irrelevant factor without their consent. Your credit history doesn’t affect whether or not you’re a safe driver or responsible homeowner. I’m pleased Governor Walker vetoed this harmful piece of legislation,” said Rep. Wool.

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NEWS: Conference Committee Advances Flawed Oil Tax Credit Subsidy Bill

Juneau – Today, the Conference Committee created to work out the differences between the House and Senate versions of House Bill 247 advanced a new version that continues unsustainable subsidies to the oil and gas industry that will cost Alaska hundreds of millions of dollars a year. The only member of the Minority on the Conference Committee is Representative Geran Tarr (D-Anchorage). She objected to the new version of HB 247 and voted no on advancing the bill out of the committee.

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NEWS: Alaska House Passes Legislation to Roll-Back Many Unsustainable Oil Industry Subsidies

Juneau – Today, the Alaska House of Representatives approved House Bill 247 to significantly reform Alaska’s unsustainable oil tax credit subsidy system. The members of the Alaska Independent Democratic Coalition (AIDC) cautiously supported the legislation after participating in a bipartisan effort to amend the bill to dramatically increase savings and fix flaws included in previous versions of the bill.

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NEWS: The Late Rep. Max Gruenberg’s Final Bill Passes the Alaska Legislature, With a Little Help From His Friends

Juneau – Today, House Bill 147 passed the Alaska Senate by a unanimous vote. Earlier this month, the bill passed the Alaska House of Representatives, also by a unanimous vote. The bill was the brainchild of the late Rep. Max Gruenberg who passed away suddenly in February at the age of 72 while still in office. Rep. Liz Vazquez (R-Anchorage) sponsored HB 147, which does several things including allowing the well-being of pets to be considered by courts in divorce proceedings. Rep. Ivy Spohnholz (D-Anchorage) was appointed to the District 16 seat held by Rep. Gruenberg and she quickly became a co-sponsor of HB 147.

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NEWS: Alaska House Votes to Oppose the Sale of Frankenfish

Juneau – The Alaska House of Representatives voted unanimously Friday night in favor of House Joint Resolution 28 sponsored by House Resources Committee member Representative Geran Tarr (D-Anchorage). HJR 28 puts the Alaska House on record opposing the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) approval of a genetically engineered salmon being sold for human consumption. Additionally, the resolution urges Congress to enact legislation requiring genetically engineered products be labeled.

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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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NEWS: Rep. Wool Introduces Bill to Protect Alaskans from Predatory Insurance Company Practices

Rep. Adam Wool

Juneau – Today, Representative Adam Wool (D-Fairbanks) introduced consumer protection legislation to prohibit insurance companies from raising rates or denying coverage based on credit scores without the customer’s permission.  Currently, insurance companies are allowed to use credit scores to decide whether to cover someone and to set the initial rates.  However, without the customer’s permission they cannot consider credit scores when renewing an existing policy.  House Bill 367 would prevent Alaskans from being denied insurance coverage based on credit scores and would require the customer to give permission for credit scores to be used to calculate prices.

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