Gov. Mike Dunleavy speaks at a news conference in Anchorage on Friday, March 26, 2021, to announce the state’s intention to begin management of over 800,000 miles of submerged lands as affirmed in a 2019 U.S. Supreme Court decision. (Courtesy photo / Office of Gov. Mike Dunleavy)
Gov. Mike Dunleavy speaks at a news conference in Anchorage on Friday, March 26, 2021, to announce the state’s intention to begin management of over 800,000 miles of submerged lands as affirmed in a 2019 U.S. Supreme Court decision. (Courtesy photo / Office of Gov. Mike Dunleavy)
House Speaker Louise Stutes, R-Kodiak, listens to representatives debate a COVID-19 disaster declaration on Thursday, March 25, 2021. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire file)

House passes emergency declaration bill

The House Coalition is made of mostly Democrats and independents and is led by Speaker Louise Stutes, R-Kodiak.

House Speaker Louise Stutes, R-Kodiak, listens to representatives debate a COVID-19 disaster declaration on Thursday, March 25, 2021. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire file)
Passengers at the Juneau International Airport make their way past signage notifying the public about the state’s travel restrictions on Monday, Nov. 15, 2020. Alaska Department of Health and Social Services released a request for information seeking to determine interest among potential contractors to provide a one-dose vaccine to interested travelers in a secure section of the airports in Anchorage, Juneau, Fairbanks and Ketchikan. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire File)

Alaska health department floats idea of airport vaccinations

Could vaccines be coming to Alaska’s busiest airports?

Passengers at the Juneau International Airport make their way past signage notifying the public about the state’s travel restrictions on Monday, Nov. 15, 2020. Alaska Department of Health and Social Services released a request for information seeking to determine interest among potential contractors to provide a one-dose vaccine to interested travelers in a secure section of the airports in Anchorage, Juneau, Fairbanks and Ketchikan. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire File)
Peter Segall / Juneau Empire
House Speaker Louise Stutes, R-Kodiak, listens to representatives debate a COVID-19 disaster declaration on Thursday.

Lawmakers clash on how to manage pandemic

Disaster debate shows deep divisions.

Peter Segall / Juneau Empire
House Speaker Louise Stutes, R-Kodiak, listens to representatives debate a COVID-19 disaster declaration on Thursday.
Rep. Sarah Vance (R-Homer) in the Alaska Capitol on Feb. 11, 2021 in Juneau, Alaska. (Photo by Peter Segall/Juneau Empire)

Public pushback puts pause on DMV proposal

Lawmakers shutter plan to close six rural DMVs

Rep. Sarah Vance (R-Homer) in the Alaska Capitol on Feb. 11, 2021 in Juneau, Alaska. (Photo by Peter Segall/Juneau Empire)
Sens. Shelley Hughes, R-Palmer, left and Lora Reinbold, R-Eagle River, questioned acting Attorney General Treg Taylor about the administration’s approach to legal matters at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on Wednesday, March 23, 2021. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
Sens. Shelley Hughes, R-Palmer, left and Lora Reinbold, R-Eagle River, questioned acting Attorney General Treg Taylor about the administration’s approach to legal matters at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on Wednesday, March 23, 2021. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
Rep. Chris Kurka, R-Wasilla, leaves the chambers of the Alaska House of Representatives on Friday, March 19, 2021, after an hour of delays concerning the wording on his mask. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
Rep. Chris Kurka, R-Wasilla, leaves the chambers of the Alaska House of Representatives on Friday, March 19, 2021, after an hour of delays concerning the wording on his mask. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
The Homer office of the Division of Motor Vehicles is seen after hours on Monday, March 15, 2021, in Homer, Alaska. (Photo by Michael Armstrong/Homer News)

House subcommittee grills officials on plan to close DMV offices

‘I really doubt it’s going to pass,’ Vance said of governor’s idea to close rural locations

The Homer office of the Division of Motor Vehicles is seen after hours on Monday, March 15, 2021, in Homer, Alaska. (Photo by Michael Armstrong/Homer News)
The MV Matanuska awaits repairs at the Auke Bay Ferry Terminal on Thursday as lawmakers at the state Capitol debated whether the Alaska Marine Highway System was actually a highway. A bill that would shape long-term planning for the system passed out of committee. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
The MV Matanuska awaits repairs at the Auke Bay Ferry Terminal on Thursday as lawmakers at the state Capitol debated whether the Alaska Marine Highway System was actually a highway. A bill that would shape long-term planning for the system passed out of committee. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
Rep. Christopher Kurka, R-Wasilla, seen here leaving the House chambers on Feb. 22, questioned masking rules on the floor of the House Monday and said there was political bias behind enforcement of rules. However, also on Monday two staff members tested positive for COVID-19 and 14 other people, including two House lawmakers, have gone into quarantine. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
Rep. Christopher Kurka, R-Wasilla, seen here leaving the House chambers on Feb. 22, questioned masking rules on the floor of the House Monday and said there was political bias behind enforcement of rules. However, also on Monday two staff members tested positive for COVID-19 and 14 other people, including two House lawmakers, have gone into quarantine. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
In this Feb 23, 2021, file photo, U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, speaks during a hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington. The Alaska Republican Party has not only censured Sen. Murkowski for voting to convict former President Donald Trump in his impeachment trial, but it also does not want her to identity as a GOP candidate in next year’s election, a member of the party’s State Central Committee said Tuesday, March 16, 2021. (Sarah Silbiger/Pool Photo via AP, File)

Alaska GOP censures Murkowski, looks for ’22 challenger

“The party does not want Lisa Murkowski to be a Republican candidate.”

In this Feb 23, 2021, file photo, U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, speaks during a hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington. The Alaska Republican Party has not only censured Sen. Murkowski for voting to convict former President Donald Trump in his impeachment trial, but it also does not want her to identity as a GOP candidate in next year’s election, a member of the party’s State Central Committee said Tuesday, March 16, 2021. (Sarah Silbiger/Pool Photo via AP, File)
An Anchorage man was arrested in Anchorage Tuesday, March 16, 2021 by the FBI for his alleged participation in the Capitol riots in January. (Michael Penn / Juneau Empire File)

Anchorage man arrested for alleged participation in Capitol riots

He’s one of many wanted in connection with the abortive attempt to overturn the election results.

An Anchorage man was arrested in Anchorage Tuesday, March 16, 2021 by the FBI for his alleged participation in the Capitol riots in January. (Michael Penn / Juneau Empire File)
A Department of Corrections nurse vaccinates a Fairbanks Correctional Center inmate. The DOC eased restrictions on March 15, 2021, to allow attorneys to visit fully vaccinated inmates at DOC facilities. (Courtesy Photo / DOC)

DOC to allow attorney-client visitation in facilities

Attorneys will be allowed to visit fully vaccinated inmates in person again.

A Department of Corrections nurse vaccinates a Fairbanks Correctional Center inmate. The DOC eased restrictions on March 15, 2021, to allow attorneys to visit fully vaccinated inmates at DOC facilities. (Courtesy Photo / DOC)
FILE - This May 8, 2008, file photo shows blank checks on an idle press at the Philadelphia Regional Financial Center, which disburses payments on behalf of federal agencies in Philadelphia. Officials at the Treasury Department and Internal Revenue Service said Friday, March 12, 2021 that processing the new round of stimulus payments has already begun, with the aim of having the first payments start showing up in bank accounts this weekend. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke, File)
FILE - This May 8, 2008, file photo shows blank checks on an idle press at the Philadelphia Regional Financial Center, which disburses payments on behalf of federal agencies in Philadelphia. Officials at the Treasury Department and Internal Revenue Service said Friday, March 12, 2021 that processing the new round of stimulus payments has already begun, with the aim of having the first payments start showing up in bank accounts this weekend. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke, File)
Alaska Attorney General Treg Taylor, foreground, appears before the House Judiciary Committee for a confirmation hearing on Monday, March 15, 2021, in Juneau, Alaska. Republican Rep. Christopher Kurka, a committee member, is seen in the background. (AP Photo/Becky Bohrer)

Alaska AG discusses plans, Clarkson in hearing

Dunleavy appointed Taylor as attorney general in January to replace Ed Sniffen.

Alaska Attorney General Treg Taylor, foreground, appears before the House Judiciary Committee for a confirmation hearing on Monday, March 15, 2021, in Juneau, Alaska. Republican Rep. Christopher Kurka, a committee member, is seen in the background. (AP Photo/Becky Bohrer)
Pete Kaiser leaves the Ophir, Alaska, checkpoint with his dog team during the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race on Friday, March 12, 2021. (Zachariah Hughes/Anchorage Daily News via AP, Pool)

Dog illness prompts former Iditarod champion to scratch

Pete Kaiser scratched at the McGrath checkpoint.

Pete Kaiser leaves the Ophir, Alaska, checkpoint with his dog team during the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race on Friday, March 12, 2021. (Zachariah Hughes/Anchorage Daily News via AP, Pool)
This photo provided by the Alaska Wildlife Troopers taken March 9, 2021, Doug Ramsey, left, of Sundance Wyoming, poses with Alaska Wildlife Trooper Jason Kneier near a hole in the ice of a river in Swentna, Alaska. The two helped pull an 8-year-old boy from the water after he fell into the river. (Alaska Wildlife Troopers via AP)

Troopers, Iditarod volunteer help rescue child from river

“It happened really fast. I was glad I was at the right place at the right time.”

This photo provided by the Alaska Wildlife Troopers taken March 9, 2021, Doug Ramsey, left, of Sundance Wyoming, poses with Alaska Wildlife Trooper Jason Kneier near a hole in the ice of a river in Swentna, Alaska. The two helped pull an 8-year-old boy from the water after he fell into the river. (Alaska Wildlife Troopers via AP)
Gov. Mike Dunleavy speaks during an August news conference. On thursday, Dunleavy withdrew an executive order reorganizing the state’s largest department, the Department of Health and Social Services, after lawmakers sought to block it. (Courtesy Photo / Office of Gov. Mike Dunleavy)

Governor withdraws DHSS split order

Reorganizing the department remains a priority.

Gov. Mike Dunleavy speaks during an August news conference. On thursday, Dunleavy withdrew an executive order reorganizing the state’s largest department, the Department of Health and Social Services, after lawmakers sought to block it. (Courtesy Photo / Office of Gov. Mike Dunleavy)
Peter Segall / Juneau Empire file
Service from ferries like the Tazlina, seen here coming into dock at Juneau on May 16, 2020, have become unreliable for coastal communities as year-to-year planning leads to high levels of uncertainty, according to coastal lawmakers.
Peter Segall / Juneau Empire file
Service from ferries like the Tazlina, seen here coming into dock at Juneau on May 16, 2020, have become unreliable for coastal communities as year-to-year planning leads to high levels of uncertainty, according to coastal lawmakers.
The Department of Health and Social Services, its headquarters seen here in Juneau on Monday, March 8, 2021, could be split into two departments by an executive order from the governor. However, some lawmakers have raised concern about the legality of the order, saying it could lead to costly litigation. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)

Lawmakers question whether proposed department split is legal

Governor maintains executive order is within his powers, others are less sure.

The Department of Health and Social Services, its headquarters seen here in Juneau on Monday, March 8, 2021, could be split into two departments by an executive order from the governor. However, some lawmakers have raised concern about the legality of the order, saying it could lead to costly litigation. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)