Loose Lips: Gassy oily Wednesday in Juneau. Repeal gets a generous donor. Higgins is in.

15770860_mIt’s oily, gassy Wednesday in the state capitol building. Among the oilies, ConocoPhillips Alaska President Trond-Erik Johansen and his posse spent the day roaming the halls. The Alaska Oil and Gas Association hosted a lunch today for leggies. The keynote speaker was BP Alaska President Janet Weiss.

Speaking of gas, gubernatorial candidate Bill Walker is still speaking about it. Expect much more of him as gasline legislation moves along.

From a fundraising letter from Vic Fischer “And now, for a limited time, a donor has agreed to match any contribution to Vote Yes! – Repeal the Giveaway 100% up to $25,000.”

As of last Friday, Fischer’s group, which is trying to repeal the oil tax legislation passed last legislative session, had raised about $104,000. Those who are urging voters to vote against the repeal, mainly oil companies, have raised more than $1.6 million as of Jan. 22.

So far, most of the $81,000 the repeal group has spent has gone to signature gatherers.  On the other side, nearly all the money the group has raised has gone to Poccarro Communications.

Some Anchorage Dems gathered at Barbie’s Café in Anchorage to watch the State of the Union, where the loudest applause line of the night came while Obama was speaking about women’s issues. The event was organized by, among others, Patti Higgins, who announced that she was running for state House against Rep. Charisse Millett, who just the day before told the press that doctors had discovered a brain lesion that might indicate that she has MS.

A panel was convened at the same gathering to talk to us after the speech and tell us what to think about issues. It was moderated by Dr. Carl Shepro. The inimitable Ivan Moore was on the panel. So was spokesman for the Democratic Party Zack Fields. The President of the Young Democrats Joe Samaniego and Dennis Knebel with the IBEW were also on the panel.

I was told that Shannyn Moore was invited to attend but didn’t show. Perhaps she was spent her evening somewhere in the company of women, who weren’t sitting in front of her telling her what to think about issues.

Not all Dems in the country are talking at women. Anchorage’s Gloria O’Neill, President of Cook Inlet Tibal Council, has been invited to participate in a White House discussion on employment with the President and his cabinet secretaries from Commerce and Labor. They want to hear what she has to say. Besides her work at CITC which includes several employment and training related programs, she also is on the University of Alaska’s board of regents.

What else? House Minority Leader Chris Tuck has been busy moving into his new, relatively palatial office, with a sitting room even! Outgoing Minority Leader Beth Kerttula had it pretty cozy. I remember throw rugs and pillows and plants and books. Since he’s the state’s most eligible bachelor, I was curious about Tuck’s designing plans, so I called his office a few times, but no one answered.

Speaking of the state’s most eligible bachelor, I’m told that he and Bernadette Wilson aren’t seeing each other anymore. Perhaps she was sick of calling and not getting an answer.

Contact Amanda Coyne at amandamcoyne@yahoo.com


2 thoughts on “Loose Lips: Gassy oily Wednesday in Juneau. Repeal gets a generous donor. Higgins is in.

  1. Lynn Willis

    So what do we call this latest pipeline of the Govenor? . Perhaps we shouldn’t use any name that might remind us of previous gas line projects including El Paso, Yukon Pacific, AGIA, DENALI, Bullet Line or the current AGDA/ASAP line.

    I will be interested to hear what Bill Walker has to say. I have been watching the gas line hearings and sense that TransCanada (TC) isn’t as popular as it was a few years ago. Are we sticking with them on this next project just to avoid what has been called a “messy divorce” over the failed AGIA project, a divorce that could end up in costly/time consuming litigation because we can’t agree that AGIA is no longer viable? Some very valid questions from legisaltors today asking the TransCanda honcho Tony Palmer what would motivate TC to protect our interests when TransCanada is also involved in the two British Columbia gas pipeline export projects to Kitimat and Prince Rupert.

    Oil is more valuable to the state. In order to save our now precious oil revenue resources from going into another gas line rathole I do hope some legislator or member of the press asks those oilies who are visiting Juneau, and who own the leases for the gas ,if they are willing at this time to promise to release the volumes of gas necessary to make this latest gas line project viable. If they say they are, then the questioner should proceed immediately to the offices of the AOGCC (Alaska Oil and Gas Conservation Committee) to see if they will recommend that this volume of gas is not necessary to extract North Slope oil.

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