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Leg With Louie: Senate State Affairs is off and running

SB 39, the radical voter suppression bill, was heard on Thursday in Senate State Affairs. The hearing was a platform for Senator Mike Shower to air out the evidence-poor argument that our current voting system is wide open and vulnerable to an apocalypse of cumulative human error. Shower’s solution to these baseless claims: a tightened and costly voting system that …

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Leg With louie: Organized

The State Senate has managed to solve the Rubik’s Cube of legislative organizing with an all-Republican face but for the inclusion of one rural Dem, Senator Lyman Hoffman. There are mysteries at the heart of this combination: promises and deals made. We know that behind it all, someone gave up something to get something. Legislators like Senator Mike Shower, who …

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Leg With Louie: The Starting Gate

The 2021 Legislative Session starts today, with COVID precautions in place. It will be a different year (whatever that means anymore). For one thing, the introduction of visitors from around the state in the gallery to the ovation of House or Senate members – one of the great, humanizing formalities of legislative floor sessions, will be missing this year. Also, …

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Leg With Louie: two things you can do today

The Dunleavy Administration has officially squashed hopes that it will pursue a broad vote at home effort anytime soon. The announcement by Lt. Governor Kevin Meyer that Alaska will not conduct a vote at home for the August primary. The legislature provided the Administration with authority, but no mandate to conduct a statewide vote at home in its COVID-19 response …

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Leg With louie: To Bag or not To Bag

The Novel Coronavirus has caused changes in how we interact. With people, with time itself, and with things. Wearing or not wearing a mask in public has become a political act to some. Distillers of fine gin are now distilling sanitizing hand gel. Single-use plastic bags are temporarily rescued from their glide path to oblivion by frontline retail workers deeming …

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Leg with Louie: Toward an Electric Tomorrow

Imagine, some future day after a bruising legislative session, our legislators and staff head homeward from Juneau, in quiet vehicles that require little maintenance, have zero CO2 emissions, and that glide lightly along the highway. By the time they reached their home districts, all of the accumulated malice, rancor, and ill-will of a typical session would be gone, replaced by …

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Leg With Louie: Building the new economy starts now

Yours may be cowboys, Willie, but my heroes have always been journalists. Even today, in the middle of the daily whirlwind of sheep-dip and gibberish from our highest officer in the land, with uncertainty on all horizons and a pandemic at our door, journalists are out there asking questions, arranging facts, allowing citizens a foothold of logic in the world …

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Leg with Louie: Ways to participate in the 50th Anniversary of Earth Day.

I am easily distracted. In the middle of trying to write that sentence, I watched a youtube video of John Prine concert footage from 1980, then read a beautiful lonesome poem by Antonio Machado, another by William Stafford. I checked in on the rhubarb bush just exposed from under the snow and already starting to sprout, and also I tried …

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Solarize Homer generates local energy

Adding solar energy to a home or business is easier and cheaper when people band together. Forming a collective can bring down costs and make a project more attractive to installers. That’s the goal of Solarize Homer. You can find information on the Homer, Kenai, Fairbanks and Anchorage Solarize projects at kenaichange.org. or at akcenter.org To sign up for Solarize …

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Leg with Louie: Power-Play During a Pandemic

The Governor’s budget vetoes came through this week. The cuts were not as dramatic as some may have feared, but they were made in bad faith. The Legislature put together their budgets working tirelessly under the threat of the COVID-19 pandemic, putting their health and safety at risk in doing so, while maintaining good communication with the Administration throughout the …