Here are some important events later this month for you to put down on your calendar.
Our third annual constituent picnic will be held Tuesday, June 18 from 5:00 – 7:30 p.m. at Abbott Loop Community Park, 8101 Elmore Road.
Join me, Senator Kevin Meyer and Representative Bob Lynn for free BBQ under the gazebo next to the soccer field. Members of the Alaska State Troopers, Anchorage Police Department and the Anchorage Fire Department will join us. The Alaska Department of Fish & Game will have a bear awareness booth packed with information on how we can live safely with our big furry friends.
You should have received a postcard about the picnic in your mailbox this week. If you need more information or have any questions just call our office at 269-0222. The picnics are always a lot of fun and this one will be no different so bring the kids and your questions and we’ll see you Tuesday night.
East 88th Avenue Reconstruction Open House
The Alaska Department of Transportation has a preliminary design plan for the reconstruction of East 88th Avenue between Spruce Brook Street and Elmore Road on paper. An open house is set for Wednesday, June 26 from 6:00 – 8:00 p.m. at Abbott Loop Elementary School, 8427 Lake Otis Parkway.
Everyone is invited to attend the meeting to see what the department has in mind and to ask questions. The design will be finalized next spring so it is important to let the engineers know what you like or do not like about the design before construction on the $4.8 million road project begins next summer.
On our last blog post we promised to provide the agenda from the Council of State Governments Natural Gas Policy Academy I attended this spring. Click here to view it: Agenda – CSG Natural Gas Policy Academy
Hope your summer is going well!
admin @ June 14, 2013
Alaska joins majority of states in using people first language
Monday, June 3, 2013, Anchorage, Alaska – Representative Charisse Millett, R-Anchorage, released the following statement today thanking Governor Parnell for signing House Bill 88 into law at the groundbreaking ceremony for the new Special Olympics Alaska building today. The bill prohibits the use of the “r word” in Alaska Statute and replaces it with “intellectual and developmental disability.”
HB 88 passed both houses unanimously, with twenty five co-sponsors in the House and eighteen in the Senate. “When the public constantly sees signs of division in their elected officials, it is wonderful, and hopeful, that we as lawmakers can come together and have a unified voice in support of respect for human dignity,” Millett said. “By replacing outmoded terms that are offensive and degrading from the language of our government. The State of Alaska tells residents that it will set the bar of how we regard those who are the most vulnerable in our society.”
The State of Alaska uses the “r word” in over twenty statutes and dozens of regulations related to services, medical needs and education. Residents with intellectual and developmental disabilities that had to interact with the state had to confront being legally designated as the “r word” on a constant basis.
“Although the “r word” used to be the clinical term that was used with good intentions, that is no longer the case. Instead, it has become a term used widely in our society to degrade and insult people with intellectual disabilities,” Senator Kevin Meyer, R-Anchorage, who filed the companion bill in the Senate, said. “We believe that it is time for us to be more inclusive and respectful by using terms that are ‘people first’ in our state laws and other official communications.”
With the passage of House Bill 88, Alaska joins over forty other states as well as the federal government in using “people first” language in state statutes. “We send a message today that words do matter,” Millett said.
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To contact Rep. Millett, please call 907-269-0222.
admin @ June 4, 2013
I hope everyone is enjoying the great weather. The weekend is almost here so we’ll briefly hit on some of the issues on our plate this summer.
Hillside Intersection Study
If you are one of the hundreds of drivers frustrated by how difficult it is to turn onto Elmore Road from Coventry Drive or East 84th we have good news!
Both intersections are part of the new Hillside Intersection Study underway at the Alaska Department of Transportation. Traffic engineers will make recommendations on how to make it easier for residents in those neighborhoods to turn onto Elmore during morning and evening rush hours.
An open house will be held at the Alaska Zoo on Wednesday, June 26 from 4-7 p.m. This is your opportunity to talk to the project team members who will be gathering traffic data from the intersections in June.
Here is the link to the project website: www.southanchorageintersections.com
National Ocean Policy
A recent edition of the Anchorage Daily News carried my opinion piece about National Ocean Policy. If you are not aware of this don’t be surprised because not many Alaskans are. In July 2010 the administration in Washington D.C. issued the National Ocean Policy Executive Order and released National Ocean Policy Final Implementation Plan.
The consequences of creating a national ocean zoning policy is something Alaskans need to understand due to the drastic impacts it could have on our coastal areas and future economic development.
Click on this link to read it: http://www.adn.com/2013/05/11/2898237/compass-new-federal-ocean-policy.html
If you have trouble viewing it reply to this email and I will send you a copy.
This month I attended a state paid trip to the joint meeting of the Energy Producing States Coalition (EPSC) and the Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission in Mobile, Alabama. EPSC is made up of eleven states that are net producers of energy. Lawmakers meet to formulate policies that will increase domestic energy production and educate Americans about its tremendous benefits like good paying jobs and a secure supply of energy.
Our organization is working on legislation dealing with federal oceans policy, the Endangered Species Act and how we can stop the federal government’s plan to swipe mineral royalties owed to states like Alaska from oil and gas activities in NPR-A.
Read the news release issued by my colleague and incoming EPSC Chair Senator Cathy Giessel: 052813_Giessel_EPSC_Meeting
Here is a copy of the EPSC April newsletter with the agenda from the one day conference: EPSC April Newsletter
In April I received a scholarship to attend the Council of State Governments (CSG) in Houston, Texas. Founded in 1933, CSG is the only organization serving all three branches of state government and is a great opportunity to learn how other states are addressing a wide range of public policy issues.
We will make the agenda from the meeting available to you on our next blog post or just reply to this email and my staff will get you a copy as soon as possible.
In June, the Energy Council will hold a meeting in Bismarck, North Dakota. In just a few short years North Dakota has become one of the top oil producing states in the country thanks to fracking technology that is unlocking billions of barrels of oil. I really look forward to this meeting to see firsthand how this revolutionary technology is transforming the global energy industry.
Energy Council is another group made up of lawmakers from oil and gas producing states and my peers selected me to serve on the executive committee. That position brings with it a lot of responsibility. Closer to home, I am one of four legislators chosen to serve on the host committee for the August 2014 CSG National Summit in Anchorage. This event will bring more than a thousand government officials from around the country to our hometown.
Later this summer I will work on energy issues at the Pacific Northwest Economic Region, Regional Legislative Energy Horizon Institute and the CSG West Legislative Summit. More details on those events will be posted on my blog page as they become available. Our office will be posting all costs and the amounts of scholarships awarded so we remain open and transparent about all my legislative travel.
Next week the governor will sign two pieces of legislation our office worked on last session.
On Sunday (6/2) he signs SB 73 at the Military Appreciation Picnic on JBER. It allows local governments to grant a partial property tax exemption to the widow or widower of a military member whose death was service related. Senator Kevin Meyer sponsored the senate version while the house version was sponsored by my office.
We have a constituent in District 24 who lost her husband in a military plane crash three years ago. This is the least we can do for the families who lost a loved one and have to figure out how to keep the family home.
The opening ceremony of the 2013 Alaska Special Olympic Games is scheduled for Monday (6/3) and it kicks off with the signing of House Bill 88. My legislation shows respect for the athletes and all developmentally disabled Alaskans by updating state health, education and labor policy by replacing the “R word” with “intellectual and developmental disabilities.”
The “R word” has been transformed into a derogatory term that is sometimes used to degrade and insult people with intellectual disabilities. This bill recognizes that words we use really do make a difference.
Service High School
Each school year our office teams up with Senator Kevin Meyer to recognize the achievements of student athletes and faculty at Service High School.
This spring we presented legislative citations to the boys football team, head coach Numi Ilalio, assistant coach William Fomai, the girls hockey team, the boys basketball team and its star player Adam Klie and the boys cross country running team.
Congratulations to the Service High girls soccer team for taking second place in the state tournament and a big congratulations to Head Coach Mark Cascolan for a great season. We had a lot of fun cheering them on during the tournament.
This weekend I will be throwing out the first pitch at the state high school baseball championships. The Cougars face off against the Juneau Crimson Bears Saturday night (5/31) at 7 Mulcahy Stadium. Come on out and help me cheer the cougars on!
Here is the link to Alaska Legion Baseball: http://alaskalegion.com/
And finally, it was an honor to participate in the graduation ceremony for more than 400 Service High School seniors earlier this month. These young people are now entering adulthood so let’s all wish them all the very best.
Get out and enjoy the sunshine!
admin @ May 31, 2013
MILLETT UNVEILS TRAVESTY WELLS INFORMATIONAL WEBSITE
Website provides Alaskans with information on BLM’s devastating wells
Thursday, May 16, 2013, Anchorage, Alaska – Today Representative Charisse Millett unveiled her new Travesty Well website. The purpose of the website is to provide Alaskans with the latest information on the status of 136 oil and gas wells drilled by the federal government in the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska from 1944 to 1981.
“Alaskans are fed up with the delays and excuses coming from the Bureau of Land Management,” Millett, R-Anchorage, said. “The only legacy BLM has as far as these wells are concerned is mismanagement and environmental neglect. Anyone interested in preserving Alaska’s natural beauty can use this website to learn about the history of the wells and to track what if any progress BLM is making to plug and cleanup the sites.”
The recently proposed 2014 U.S. Department of the Interior budget shows an earnest cleanup effort being put forward, but the department plans on paying for the efforts by using Alaska’s share of the oil and gas revenue from NPR-A, effectively stealing from the State of Alaska. “We cannot and will not stand for the federal government using the state’s revenue to clean up their mess,” Millett said.
Senator Lisa Murkowski recently told Interior Department Secretary Sally Jewell that proposal was “dead on arrival.”
Known today as “legacy” wells by the BLM, the Alaska Legislature decided the term was misleading and named them “travesty” wells through the passage of House Joint Resolution 6 last month. The resolution urges BLM to follow its mission statement and protect the reserve through an aggressive well cleanup plan.
Click here to view the website:
New materials and information will be posted to the website as it becomes available so be sure to check back frequently.
For more information, contact Representative Millett at (907) 269-0222.
admin @ May 17, 2013