In this issue
  • How to stay engaged during the 2022 legislative session
  • Find your Community Councils
  • Community conversation tonight at 7:00pm on racial healing
  • Free legal support services available on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Monday, January 17th
The 2022 legislative session begins this Tuesday, January 18th. We will dive right into the Governor's FY23 proposed budget, hearing bills, and other legislative business.

With so much going on, it can be difficult to track issues that are important to you, navigate the legislative process, and know how/when to provide public comment and testimony. Here are some tools to make it easier!
Track Bills
I regularly share opportunities for public testimony on my social media and e-news. However, you can also receive updates on specific bills via text or email anytime action is taken on a bill in the state legislature. These updates include information on when a bill is scheduled, when there will be opportunity for public testimony, and each step along the way of the process from bill to law.

You can sign up for text updates by texting the bill number (ex: HB1) to
1-559-245-2529.

You can sign up for bill tracking via email through the Bill Tracking Management Facility (BTMF) on akleg.gov.
Participate in Public Testimony
Once a bill is scheduled for a hearing, you can make a plan to testify.

Testify by email
You can send an email to the members of the committee that plans to hear the bill. Each committee has an email address you can find by going to http://www.akleg.gov and selecting the committee. The email address is posted there. For example, the House Labor and Commerce Committee I co-chair can be found here and the email is House.Labor.And.Commerce@akleg.gov.

Testify live to the committee
  1. To testify in person, show up in person at the local legislative information office (LIO) or Alaska State Capital committee room.
  2. To testify by phone call the local LIO, Anchorage's is (907) 269-0260, or 844-586-9085.
  3. If you ever have any questions about the legislative process and how to make yourself heard, your local LIO or your representatives are great resources.

All this information and more is available at akleg.gov.

The Anchorage LIO can be reached at (907) 269-0260 or LIO.Anchorage@akleg.gov. You can also reach my office anytime and we'd be happy to help.
Join your Local Community Council
Community Councils are a great way to get involved with your local community and stay in the loop. They meet monthly, and I typically join these meetings along with my colleagues in the House and Senate and our Municipal leaders to provide updates. Community Councils often weigh in on issues of local importance in Anchorage.

Community Conversation Tonight at 7:00pm:
National Day of Racial Healing
This evening, January 16 at 7:00PM, the Alaska Black Caucus and Alaska Children's Trust are recognizing the National Day of Racial Healing and the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr through a virtual community conversation. The National Day of Racial Healing is an annual day dedicated to #HowWeHeal from the effects of racism. Recognized on January 18, 2022, it is an opportunity to bring our community together in our common humanity and take collective action to create a more just and equitable world.

This annual day, co-hosted by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation (WKKF) and Truth, Racial Healing & Transformation (TRHT) community partners, is held the Tuesday following Martin Luther King, Jr Day each year. In the weeks leading up to the day, WKKF and TRHT organizations will share resources to help communities create local activities and events for the National Day of Healing.

You can learn more about the National Day of Racial Healing and on #howweheal at WKKF's website here. http://wkkf.co/HowWeHeal.
2022 Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service:
Free Civil Legal Services Available
Tomorrow, between noon and 4 pm, the Alaska Bar Association, Alaska Court System, and Alaska Legal Services Corporation will host their thirteenth annual MLK Day free legal services event.
 
Free legal services will be available to any low-income Alaskan in need of legal counsel for all civil issues like family law, landlord/tenant, public benefits, employment law, probate, or estate planning issues.
 
Normally, participants would meet in select locations across the state, but the pandemic has shifted the event to a virtual platform. The virtual event will be staffed by 32 volunteer attorneys, and support will be available on a first-come, first-served basis.
 
In addition to the one-day event, this year Alaskans have access to a virtual legal clinic - alaska.freelegalanswers.org. The virtual clinic is hosted by the Alaska Bar Association and is an ongoing free and confidential service that allows Alaskans of modest means to receive answers to civil (non-criminal) legal questions, at no cost, from licensed Alaska lawyers. 
 
Two Ways Alaskans Can Access Free Legal Support:
 
1.) MLK Free Legal Services Day
 
When: January 17, 2021 – Noon to 4 pm
How to access:  Low-income Alaskans can register for the virtual event at bit.ly/akmlkday.
 
2.) Virtual Legal Clinic
 
When: Ongoing
How to access:  
1.    Go to Alaska.FreeLegalAnswers.org and answer a few questions to be sure you qualify for the service.
2.    Ask your non-criminal legal question via the website.
3.    A volunteer lawyer will review your question.
4.    You get an email letting you know the answer has been provided. Log in to your account to view the answer.
I'm Here for You
Feel free to give me a call or send me a message anytime, I would be happy to hear from you.
Phone Number: (907) 269-0123
Stay in Touch and Stay Engaged
(202) 224-6665

(202) 224-3004

(202) 225-5765

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Anchorage Daily News
(907) 257-4200