Tennys Owens’ gallery, Artique, will be selling limited edition prints by Byron Birdsall that will be signed by all seven living Anchorage mayors in celebration of the city’s centennial. But wait! I count eight, including acting Mayor Matt Claman. Word is that someone in City Hall—guess who– decided that an acting mayor isn’t the same thing as the real deal. Anyhow, all the other mayors will gather August 5 to sign the prints, except Begich who had a scheduling conflict and has already signed them.
The Mat-Su Business Alliance, a for-profit corporation, has endorsed Dan Sullivan’s candidacy for the U.S. Senate in the GOP primary.
When reviewing APOC reports a few days ago, it looked like ADF&G Commissioner Cora Campbell is the only member of the governor’s cabinet that hasn’t contributed to his campaign yet.
The Pacific Northwest Economic Region (PNWER) representing the states of Alaska, Idaho, Oregon, Montana, Washington, and the Canadian provinces of British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, and the Yukon and Northwest Territories, is meeting in Whistler, B.C. this week. Sens. McGuire, John Coghill (R-North Pole), Fred Dyson (R-Eagle River), Lyman Hoffman (D-Bethel) as well as Reps. Charisse Millett (R-Anchorage), Bob Herron (D-Bethel), Bryce Edgmon (D-Dillingham), Alan Austerman (R-Kodiak), Geran Tarr (D-Anchorage), Peggy Wilson (R-Wrangell), and Neal Foster (D-Nome) are all in attendance, on the state dime, of course. Three members of the Alaska delegation are retiring this year. Perhaps they’ll spend the time to write memos to their successors on what they’ve learned.
Last week, Jon Bittner started at the Department of Commerce as a Deputy Commissioner. Starting August 25, he’ll be joined by Fred Parady who will also be a Deputy Commissioner in the department. Parady’s responsibilities will include oversight of the Division of Corporations, Business and Professional Licensing; Division of Community and Regional Affairs; Division of Insurance, and the Regulatory Commission of Alaska. At one time, Parady was the speaker of the house in Wyoming. Since arriving in Alaska, however, he appears to have some difficulty holding jobs for what might be considered a reasonable period of time. Let’s hope a state job works out better for him. After all, the last DECD Deputy Commissioner only served about four months.
Every statewide politician worth a spit plus all the local politicians had entries last weekend in Fairbanks’ Golden Days Parade. The 1st place award for best political float went to North Pole’s Rep. Tammie Wilson. While Rep. Wilson was making an impression at the Golden Days Parade, TAPS moved their 17 billionth barrel of oil which represents a whole lot of state revenue no matter what tax regime it was taxed under.
There were at least three fundraisers for statewide candidates on Tuesday: The first, at the Petroleum Club was Gov. Sean Parnell’s second one of the day. It was hosted by some of the state’s leaders active with outdoor hunting and fishing groups. Spotted: Safari Club board member and Mat-Su Borough Assemblyman Steve Colligan who also acted as the emcee for the event; Ricky Gease who is the executive director of the Kenai Sports Fishing Association; Dr Brett Barringer; Spencie Netschert; Prez of the AK Safari Club Eddie Grasser, and Bethany Marcum, to name a few. On the south side of town in the Botanical Heights area, Larry Partusch was hosting an event for GOP senate candidate Dan Sullivan. About 40 people showed, many of whom were from the local building industry. Spotted in the crowd: Ray and Suzanne Hickel, Chuck and Jackie Spinelli, Rep. Craig Johnson, Karen and Paul Michelson, Mike Mills, and Bill and Tami Taylor. Finally, former Rep. and statewide Democratic candidate Ethan Berkowitz hosted an event in his west side home for Democratic Lt. Gov. Candidate Bob Williams. About 15 people showed. Williams said it was “awesome.” Spotted: Young Dems Laura Herman and Dan Duque. Lauren Horn, Kay Coulson, Andy Holleman, Laura Kimmel, Steve Carroll, and Marilyn Pillifant.
Sen. Bill Wielechowski and Gregg Erickson swept the floor at the oil tax debate on Wednesday night which was held at the auditorium at Loussac Library and was so packed the fire marshal had to turn folks away. Only in Alaska. They went against Brad Keithley, and petroleum economist Roger Marks, both of whom are very smart, but their arguments didn’t lend themselves to one liners about getting ripped off by the oil companies, and it being our oil.
“An ancient Alaskan-Native god of revenge rears up its ugly head and terrorizes the small Alaskan town of Gangrene Gulch. A rookie park ranger and his part-time librarian assistant are the only hope of restoring the normal dysfunction of the town.” So goes a description of the forthcoming, low budget film, “Moose the Movie.” The setting? Wasilla, naturally. An extra in the film? Verne Rupright, naturally, who is one of the “Three Amigos,” who’s running for state House because he understands Wasilla dysfunction better than most.
Downtown venues close to the Egan Center, which will be hosting Election Central on primary election night, are booking up for election night parties, especially by the senate candidates : Treadwell’s campaign will be at Sub-Zero; Begich’s campaign at Flattop Pizza; and, Sullivan’s campaign at Fat Ptarmigan.
Word is that municipal phone lines were ringing off the hook this week all across the state as the Begich campaign dialed local elected officials in pursuit of endorsements.
Just in time for berry picking season: 5000 berry buckets with a Vote No on #1 message are headed to the Bush this week.
GOP senate candidate Dan Sullivan is headed out of state tomorrow for about a week for Marine reserves training.
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