Alaska Statehood Act Anniversary on Monday 30th

June 30, 1958 – Date of Senate passage of Alaska Statehood Act
July 7, 1958 – FDR signs Statehood Act
Jan. 3, 1959 – Alaska becomes 49th state

 

We're In Alaska Statehood passed by U.S. Senate

This  “We’re In” photo was taken on June 30, 1958 the day the U.S. Senate passed The Alaska Statehood Act.

The famous photo, above, was taken the next day after the paper was flown to Washington, D.C.

The Statehood Act didn’t go into effect immediately–Alaska actually became a state in January 1959.

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Today (June 30) is the anniversary of the day in 1958 when the U.S. Senate passed the Alaska Statehood Act which brought Alaska into the Union. The measure was signed by President Eisenhower on July 7, 1958 and Alaska became the 49th state on Jan. 3, 1959.

You’ve probably seen the famous statehood photo. The one of the big two-word headline: “We’re In.” That headline was printed on the cover of the Anchorage paper of that day.

Well, here’s an interesting tidbit you may not know about that photo—the one with the officials holding the newspaper.

While the headline was printed on June 30th, the photo itself was taken on July 1st—in Washington, D.C.

That could be arranged in this day of high speed jets and special courier services. But back in 1958, that was some feat.

Special editions of the historic paper were flown to Washington, D.C. by jet bomber for distribution to Washington officials.

There’s a photo in the Alaska Digital Archives of President Eisenhower and Alaska Territorial Governor Mike Stepovich holding a copy of that paper in Washington, D.C. on July 1st. The day after it was printed in Anchorage.

This week on The LegHead Report we’ll be remembering the signing of the Alaska Statehood Act with stories from our archives about statehood.

And speaking of Archives, the Alaska Digital Archives has a copy of the “We’re In” photo as well as thousands of others. The digital archives also has audio and video covering all periods of Alaska history.

Plan to spend a lot of time there if you go. There is so much to look at and enjoy.

 

Alaska Digital Archives

 

Alaska Legislature approves measure to help small refineries HB 287

House Bill 287 began as a way to help small refineries–namely Petro Star, which operates two refineries.
However, it ends up the measure helps the state’s largest refinery Tesoro.
Democratic Senators label HB287 “This Year’s Giveaway.”

A measure approved by the Alaska Legislature would help small refineries to stay in business by providing tax credits and subsidies.

House Bill 287 was created with the intention of helping Petro Star stay in business. Petro Star, which is a subsidiary of the Arctic Slope Native Corporation and owns two refineries had asked for assistance from the state.

The measure came under attack by critics because it doesn’t limit the financial help to refineries in need, thus making the state’s largest refinery in Nikiski—which is owned by Tesoro—eligible for the financial benefits of the bill.

In fact, HB 287 earned the distinction of being named “This Year’s Giveaway” by the Democratic Senators.

In a press availability held shortly after the end of the legislative session, Governor Sean Parnell avoided mentioning the controversy, and instead focused on the need to keep Alaska’s small refineries viable…

Gov. Sean Parnell’s comments…

Governor Sean Parnell commenting on HB 287.

LNG Gasline closer to reality with passage of SB138

LNG Gasline closer to reality with passage of SB138

A long-time goal of building a large-diameter gasline to provide natural gas to Alaskans and a new petroleum product to export is closer to becoming a reality with the passage of Senate Bill 138.

SB 138 was a key priority for Governor Sean Parnell who called its passage a historic event and the beginning of the Alaska LNG Project. The measure also gives Alaska an equity-share in the gasline.

“Alaskans have waited a long time for a gasline,” he said.

Governor Parnell’s Comments

The governor speaking on SB 138 during his first ever Virtual Town Hall Meeting held April 16.

Passage of SB 138 is the first in a series of actions that must be taken over the next four to five years to allow for the development of Alaska’s North Slope natural gas resources.

That comes from a 24-page report produced for the legislature that analyzes, explains and discusses the key issues involved in building the LNG pipeline.

SB 138 both authorizes certain negotiations and provides a broad roadmap for how the Legislature will oversee and consent to these negotiations, the report summarizes.

  Currently, the project consists of three related mega-projects. They include:

  • a gas treatment plant on the North Slope,
  • an 800-mile large-diameter pipeline from the North Slope to Nikiski, and
  • an LNG export facility at Nikiski.
  • Another major component calls for at least five off-take points for gas consumption within the state.

If all goes well, the gasline could be completed by 2020.

Resources:

Senate Passes Historic Legislation to Advance Alaska LNG Project

Frequently Asked Questions about the Alaska LNG Project report by Mayer & Tsafos

 Alaska Gasline Development Corporation Website

Top Photo: Courtesy ConocoPhillips

Kodiak schools forced to adopt budget without knowing state funding for next year

Reprinted from KMXT.org

Apr 22 2014

Amidst Fiscal Uncertainty, School Budget Passes

Maggie Wall/KMXT

The Alaska Legislature continues to struggle to come up with a funding plan for the state’s education system. That has put a real wrench into plans for the local school budget.

Because of deadlines and timetables, the Kodiak Island Borough School District must present a budget for next year to the Kodiak Island Borough Assembly on Thursday. To meet the Thursday deadline, the school board had to approve its proposed Fiscal Year 2015 Budget at last night’s regular meeting.

So, how do you prepare a school budget in the range of $50 million when the bulk of your funding comes from the legislature and the legislature hasn’t yet figured out how much it will provide in funding?

The Answer:   You base the budget on what you do know, pick a mid-range figure for what the state will provide, and you hope for the best.

The school board and borough assembly will meet in a special joint work session on Thursday. Hopefully, by then they will know what the legislature will fund so they can adjust the proposed budget based on actual figures.

The school board approved a $51 million budget for Fiscal Year 2015 which begins July 1.

The budget assumes the legislature increases the Base Student Allocation by $185, and it asks the borough for $522,000 more than the current year.

Graphic: Microsoft.com

Committee to take up Education Bill on Tuesday at 10

Committee to take up Education Bill on Tuesday at 10

Gavel Alaska is reporting Conference Committee on Education will continue meeting on Tuesday morning.

Retweeted by The LegHead Report
Gavel Alaska ‏@GavelAlaska 22m

Conference committee on education bill has been rescheduled to 10 am tomorrow. Senate & House meeting back up at 11 am. #akleg

#akleg  on Twitter is the place to go for latest updates on what is happening in Juneau. Alaska Legislature members and Alaska press are constantly posting update and info.

I’m sitting here listening to the Kodiak Island Borough School Board meeting which must OK a budget for next year tonight then meet with the Kodiak Island Borough Assembly on Thursday…Kind of challenging to present a reasonable budget while still waiting for legislature to approve school funding…Maggie

Photo from Alaska Democratic Caucus Facebook Page.