Last fiscal year, Central Peninsula Hospital saw a 17 percent uptick in uncompensated care - totaling $19 million - more than doubling the amount of annual care written off as bad debt since the beginning of the Great Recession; and a jump of $6.5 million since 2011.
A May 2013 report commissioned by the Pebble Limited Partnership indicates that the proposed Pebble Mine would have a substantial effect on Alaska's economy. The partnership considers the Pebble deposit to be one of the largest of its kind in the world.
JUNEAU - The Senate version of the state operating budget includes language that proposes having the lieutenant governor stay at a state-run historic site while in Juneau.
As Alaska lawmakers discuss looming gas shortages predicted by utilities, many on both sides of the gavel have made mention of how importing liquefied natural gas to meet immediate demand might affect the existing market and production levels in the future.
Construction spending for the schools gets another boost this year, and there are several projects to account for it. The Associated General Contractors of Alaska and Institute of Social and Economic Research forecast that education-related construction spending will get a 15 percent boost over last year to the tune of $408 million. AGC's forecast states the increase comes from a $397 million state bond package passed in 2010 in addition to more local school district spending.
Morris News Service - AlaskaThe estimates were developed for the Alaska Health Care Commission by the University of Alaska's Institute of Social and Economic Research. Businesses and families are getting hit: At $11,926 per employee, Alaska has the highest average annual cost for employee health benefits in the nation, twice what employers in some other states pay. Between 2003 and 2010 the share of health benefits paid by employees increased from 17 percent to 22 percent for family coverage.
The nonprofit environmental groups Cook Inletkeeper, the Sierra Club and Alaska Survival are challenging the Surface Transportation Board's approval of the Port MacKenzie Rail Extension. The three groups oppose the federal board's November decision to construct the 32-mile rail line to connect the port to an existing rail near Houston. They have filed a legal challenge to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals to review this decision, which took around three years to pass. The Matanuska-Susitna Borough and Alaska Railroad Corp. are filing to intervene in the Petition for Review.
Back in 2010, then-Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi shared an incredible observation about one of the most ambitious and expansive pieces of legislation in American history: "We have to pass the bill so we can find out what is in it." She was talking about the Affordable Care Act, the health care bill, which just concluded a three day hearing in the United States Supreme Court - the longest since the Miranda trial in the 1960s - to determine whether the law is even constitutional.
Around Alaska, new health care projects are at every stage of construction, from breaking ground to opening doors.
1. What will be your top legislative priorities during the upcoming session? Ron Devon: Gas line to Nikiski: A Nikiski line will create good paying jobs that can support a family.
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