In 1947, with Alaska well on the road to statehood, voters overwhelmingly adopted a blanket open primary by referendum. They confirmed the beliefs that every Alaskan deserves the right to vote and choose among every candidate and that politicians are accountable directly to the people, not t…

The Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation recently finalized its air quality plan, known as the Serious Statewide Implementation Plan, as required by the federal Environmental Protection Agency to address fine particulate matter (PM2.5) air pollution in the Fairbanks North Star Bor…

Safe work happens because people are committed to sending their friends and colleagues home in the same condition they showed up in. Hilcorp, along with other exploration and production companies in Alaska, has introduced new technology to expand training, improve comprehension and verify in…

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Early in 2019, Mayors Bryce Ward, Jim Matherly and Michael Welch proclaimed every Friday in Fairbanks to be Blue and Gold Day. In their resolution, the mayors “encourage all residents to recognize the positive impact of UAF in our community and to personally support our UAF by wearing blue a…

Have you been to a public meeting held by federal land managers in Fairbanks? Or submitted written comments? What did you think of the process? Did it seem to you that your input was valued and would be meaningfully considered when making these decisions about public resources? Or did it see…

The sternwheeler Nenana in Pioneer Park needs repair. There’s no wooden boat that doesn’t, especially after years of neglect. But, despite what you may have heard, there’s no reason the cargo deck of our National Historic Landmark can’t be reopened next summer for the enjoyment of borough ci…

Alaska state prosecutors brought nearly 29,000 criminal cases in 2019, over 6,000 of them felonies. There is one particular felony (so far uncharged while the assailant is on the lam) that cannot be properly sanctioned due to the inadequacy of our sentencing code. Recently, evidence supports…

At the beginning of his administration, Gov. Mike Dunleavy observed, “Alaska’s current troubles are ‘equal opportunity problems,’ because all our residents are negatively affected.” Unfortunately, due to the state’s high crime levels, a weak economy, imprudent government spending, and underp…

There is nothing like the December sky. It causes pause, at times, and moments of reverence. The moon floats above the mountains in a deep sea of midnight blue, in stark contrast to the snow covered earth below. The trees are regal in their layers of frosting. The land is aglow. Shimmering. …

With the holiday season in full swing, like many, I reflect on the things in my life that I’m grateful for. Family, friends, good health and a host of other things come to mind, including the great people of Kenai I have the privilege of serving. I’ve called Kenai home for decades and there …

Former Natural Resources Commissioner John Shively disagrees with my call for a public charter with Hilcorp, and I welcome his criticism. His column (News-Miner, Nov. 19) is precisely the kind of public discourse and debate Alaskans should be having. We should be asking: How do we protect Al…

Investing in American infrastructure is one of President Donald Trump’s top priorities, and his commitment is clear: to “build gleaming new roads, bridges, highways, railways, and waterways all across our land.” What’s more, he has promised that “we will do it with American heart, and Americ…

The sale of BP Alaska to Hilcorp is great news. Though BP was a good neighbor, its business model is no longer the perfect fit for Alaska that it once was. So what changed? Well the nature of the Prudhoe Bay field changed. As more oil was taken out of the field, what was left became harder a…

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