Monthly Archives: January 2013

By the way ….

Odds and Ends:  Legislative Reception, Governor’s State of the State, Flu Outbreak, Oil Taxes Continue reading

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A Few Problems About Judging Teachers

When the governor proposed linking teacher evaluations to student performance tests,  he left a lot of details unfinished.  Education Commissioner Mike Hanley says that forty other states had such requirements in place when Alaska’s administrators put the rules on paper.

When it formally  changed the regulations concerning evaluations, the Board of Education didn’t deal with the details that the entire education system will have to work with.

There are problems with a set of regulations saying that, eventually,  student scores on standard tests will make up fifty percent of teacher evaluations.  Continue reading

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Last Week’s Fun Points; Next Week’s High Points

This has been the best Week-Before-They-Convene that I can remember.  A whole bunch of bills proposing strange things from stranger national interest groups,  people in one district calling for the recall of a member already,  and committees set to come out throwing punches at the governor.  I really question whether that children’s choir should be here to sing the flag song on the opening day.  It could risky. Continue reading

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I’ve Got a Question: More Guns, Fewer Laws?

Senator Mark Begich went out of his way yesterday to tell the world that he won’t support a reborn ban on assault weapons.  Good story on it here.

But he left a lot of stuff on the table while promoting a mental health program that hasn’t been explained yet. Continue reading

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First Meetings

The Senate is wasting no time in getting to work this year.  The first committee meetings have been scheduled – and they’re dealing with what might become subjects that last the entire year.   Here’s the week’s schedule. Continue reading

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Who’s Where?

I just ran across the first listing of offices and phone numbers you will need for the incoming legislature.

http://w3.legis.state.ak.us/docs/pdf/whoswho.pdf

A final version will come out in a couple of weeks maybe.  It will show staff and will update any committee changes.   This gets you started.  Please bother these people — they really love it.

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A Few Details on New Tax Plans

Yesterday’s speech giving the closest thing yet to a preview of  the administration’s most recent thinking on oil taxes is online at the Fairbanks Chamber of Commerce website.  Deputy Revenue Commissioner Bruce Tangeman begins about fifteen minutes into the meeting.  What’s there is the game changer referred to in the previous post. Continue reading

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