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By Emily Files, KHNS - Haines

A Haines tribe is calling a recent decision by a U.S. Court of Appeals a “historic victory.” The Chilkoot Indian Association was among five plaintiffs in a lawsuit challenging what is known as the “Alaska exception” – which prohibited Alaska tribes from placing their lands into federal trust. After years of litigation, including an appeal from the state, the federal court sided with the tribes. Alaska tribes can now petition for sovereignty over their lands.

By the Associated Press

The Alaska House has asked the Senate to meet in joint session to consider potential overrides of vetoes made by Gov. Bill Walker. House Speaker Mike Chenault says he sent a letter to Senate President Kevin Meyer asking for a joint session Friday. Chenault said he's not sure where the votes might be to try to override any particular veto. But he said there's enough interest on his side to at least hold a session to consider potential overrides.

By Wesley Early, Alaska Public Media

Tribes across the country would have new opportunities to reclaim lost artifacts under a new Senate bill. The Safeguard Tribal Objects of Patrimony, or STOP Act, would prevent the export of cultural and religious items.

Martin Heinrich is the junior senator from New Mexico who introduced the STOP Act to the Senate.

“It’s time to make sure that items that are deeply religious or deeply connected to individual tribes are respected, are not sold on the auction block,” Heinrich said.

Joaqlin Estus / KNBA

Construction is beginning on a Native children’s dental clinic and health services facility in Anchorage. Southcentral Foundation provides statewide dental services to Alaska Native and American Indian beneficiaries of the Indian Health Service. At a ground-breaking ceremony Monday, SCF president and CEO Katherine Gottlieb said the new clinic will add 32 dental chairs to the 15 they have now, and create an environment designed to put children at ease.

by The Associated Press

The owners of the downtown Anchorage legislative office building have filed an administrative claim seeking $37 million in damages following a botched lease deal.

Lawmakers earlier this year mulled buying the building after a state court judge invalidated their lease but Gov. Walker threatened to veto that purchase. The Legislative Council has since decided to pursue office space in another building.

Frontier of Change: As Heard on the Radio

Jun 2, 2016

  Frontier of Change is a project from KNBA that will bring the voices and stories of Alaska's changing climate to the streets and airwaves of Anchorage.

Climate change is affecting Alaska more than other parts of the country – temperatures here are rising twice as fast. And the effects are serious: the coastline is eroding, permafrost is melting, and traditional animal migration patterns are changing. 

Frontier of Change gathers stories from people whose lives and livelihoods are being profoundly affected by climate change.  These stories will be made into radio broadcasts, and into special audio tours, or "soundwalks" that will guide listeners through the streets and paths of Anchorage.

 

 

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

May 2, 2016

Bethel getting first liquor store in 40+ years

By Anna Rose MacArthur, KYUK – Bethel

Bethel’s first liquor store in over 40 years is set to open soon. AC Quickstop received the town’s first liquor license last fall after decades of restricted alcohol sales. AC General Manager Walter Pickett says the store could open as early as this week.

A few details still have to be worked out: wiring security cameras, hooking up a phone, installing a bulletproof front door, and receiving final stock deliveries.

April 29, 2016

Legislators to put Power Cost Equalization excess earnings to other uses

By Associated Press

House and Senate negotiators have reached agreement for use of any excess earnings from a fund set up to help rural areas faced with high electricity costs. A conference committee Thursday agreed to legislation that would allow for 70 percent of excess earnings from the Power Cost Equalization endowment fund to be put to other uses. Sen. Lyman Hoffman says the remaining 30 percent of any excess earnings would revert to the endowment.

KTOO - Juneau

Knowing Tlingit makes possible a life of understanding the ways of our elders

By Johanna Eurich

Most of Alaska’s twenty Native languages are going extinct. However, a Native languages assistant professor at the University of Alaska Southeast is bucking that tide. Lance X’uneit Twitchell worked hard to learn Tlingit, a language used by his family for thousands of years. Tlingit people have a rich and complex high civilization along the Pacific coast in Southeast Alaska famous for its totem poles, clan system, regalia, rich poetry and formal rhetoric.

April 28, 2016

Most current oil and gas tax credits in Alaska would be phased out by 2020 under a draft rewrite of legislation pending in the House Rules Committee. The draft has yet to be formally introduced or heard by the committee, which took possession of the bill after a prior version appeared destined to fail on the House floor. Resolution on credits is seen as key to making progress on the budget and revenue measures as the Legislature continues working in extended session.

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