Tarr's Times


My Rape Kit Reform Bill Gets Signed Into Law Today!




                                                        My Rape Kit Reform Bill will get signed into law by the Governor today!                                          



Today, Alaska Governor Bill Walker will sign my legislation to improve how law enforcement agencies address and solve sexual assault cases!  House Bill 31 requires an annual audit of untested sexual assault kits and implements a victim-centered approach to reporting sexual assault. The bill also requires 12 hours of sexual assault training for new police officers.


Victims deserve justice and a nonjudgmental process that respects them and acknowledges the trauma they’ve experienced. I believe HB 31 creates a new gold standard for reporting and examining sexual assault examination kits that gives all victims options while shielding them from further harm. This is a win-win for justice.


DNA evidence obtained through testing sexual assault kits has been a critical component to solving and preventing crime. Evidence can corroborate a victim’s account, identify a suspect, link cases, and identify serial rapists. Alaska’s rape kit reform has been a multi-year effort with support from multiple stakeholders. 


I want to thank Sen. Anna MacKinnon, Governor Walker, the Joyful Heart Foundation, the Alaska Network on Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault, STAR, the Alaska State Troopers, the members of the Sexual Assault Kit Initiative and many more Alaskans for their support. We are making progress on public safety!


Revitalizing Mountain View!


This weekend, we celebrated Juneteenth in Mountain View!


Juneteenth is typically celebrated on June 19th, but this year’s celebration spread out over the course of two weeks! This past weekend we came together to commemorate African-American freedom while emphasizing education and achievement. The Mountain View Boys and Girls Club hosted a Teen Summit, for teenagers aged 13-19. There were snacks, and dancing-lots of fun! On Saturday, The Citywide Park Celebration took place at the William Lyons Park, next to the Boys and Girls Club! After the food trucks, singing, and dancing in the sunshine- we were beat!


Also this week I met with Senator Tom Begich, Mayor Ethan Berkowitz, Mountain View Community Council President  Jasmin Smith, Kirk Rose from Anchorage Community Land Trust and Jeff Judd from Cook Inlet Housing Authority (photo below). It’s important we are all working together on neighborhood supported plans to revitalize the Mountain View Community Center so I was grilled I could get this meeting together. I left inspired! It will take some time to pull it all together, but we have a vision from our approved neighborhood plan, and a willingness from all partners to help move it forward. Let’s do this!





Show Your Support For Title IX!

This past Saturday marked the 46th anniversary of the passage of Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, the federal law that prohibits sex discrimination in education. This legislation inspired young women to get more active in sports and leveled the playing field for athletic programs across the country – making our schools more safe, accessible, & equitable for all.


I recently found a 6th grade book report I did on sex discrimination in sports where I talk about Billie Jean King, a strong advocate for passage of Title IX and the only female athlete to ever receive a presidential medal of freedom. This year I was reminded of her leadership after watching the movie Battle of the Sexes, and I convinced my colleagues in the legislature to pass a citation in her honor. We all need our (s)heroes, and Billie Jean King is one of mine. She is an advocate for women in sports, for LGBTQ rights and more. Title IX is so much more than athletics! It's a major tool to fight against campus sexual assault, harassment & bullying. You can count on me to work to protect this vital civil rights law. Get more information from the American Association of University Women at https://www.aauw.org/title-ix/



Oil and Gas Working Group meets July 10 and AKLNG Update July 11 – mark your calendar!

As the House Resources Committee Co-Chair, I helped negotiate the passage of HB 111, the deal to end the failed cash credit program for the oil and gas industry. This saved the state hundreds of millions of dollars that we were able to invest in education and other important programs this year – programs that had been cut severely in our economic crisis. 


The Legislative Oil and Gas Fiscal System Working Group was set up through the passage of that legislation. The Oil and Gas Competitiveness Review Board, housed under the Alaska Department of Revenue, is an advisory group offering expertise to the working group, and we will hear from them at a public meeting to learn more about other ways to ensure Alaska’s oil and gas industry can remain competitive in the global economy.


The House Resources Committee will get an update the next day about the state’s efforts on the AKLNG Gasline Project. Mark your calendar and join us at these public meetings.


Oil and Gas Working Group Meeting

Tuesday, July 10, 2018   -   1 pm to 5 pm


House Resources Committee Meeting

Wednesday, July 11, 2018– 9 am

Legislative Information Office at 1500 W Benson Blvd.



Summer Activities for Families

With sunshine comes summer fun, and this summer be sure to check out these neighborhood groups and organizations for a list of events

The Mountain View Library will be hosting youth programs while school is out of session, every week, for young people in the area. From magic shows and meditative story-telling, to 3-D printer design classes, I sure hope you’ll stop by and join the fun! Please click here for a full list of library events.

Over the next few weeks, remember that Kids Ride Free on Thursdays! From now until August 16th, People Mover will be allowing kids 5-18 to ride for free every Thursday. Please visit http://www.peoplemover.org/ to use the trip planner and start planning your summer activities using People Mover!

Remember that during the summer, our community council meetings take a break to enjoy the sunshine. Be sure to watch out for save-the-dates from me for the upcoming August meetings!

Upcoming Events

July 25th from 12pm to 3pm, the Blood Bank of Alaska is hosting a summer barbecue in honor of blood donors, friends, and neighbors! Come celebrate the 56th anniversary of service in Alaska! Bring the family, and remember that you can always make an appointment to save a life at our local blood bank!


August 9th, from 4-7pm, Thread is hosting their 12th Annual Book Party in the Park! The Mountain View Library will have their famous book bike there, and I hope to see you there. I’m planning on reading aloud, if you have a good book suggestion, let me know!

As always, if you  have any questions about upcoming events or legislation I'm working on, please reach out. We love hearing from you! 







1500 W Benson Blvd
Anchorage, AK 99503
P (907) 269-0144


Diana Rhoades, Legislative Director
Magdalena Oliveros, Legislative Aide