A nonpartisan group of Homer people have organized a “March for Alaska” event on Saturday, June 14. Our group is concerned about recent changes to oil taxation in Alaska as enacted by Senate Bill 21. We believe that the former tax structure of ACES provides more fairness to Alaskans.
My friend Mike Heimbuch offered his opinion recently that it may have been a mistake for the legislature to overturn the oil tax law known as ACES in favor of Senate Bill 21. Mike and I have some common ground in that we are both offspring of Alaska homesteaders and were enjoying Alaska long before oil was discovered. Mike and I don’t agree on every political issue, but our friendship endures.
The Board of Fisheries has been meeting in Anchorage recently with their focus on Upper Cook Inlet fisheries management. I was there for most of it, as I have been for nearly 40 years.
Remember long ago when the Marlboro man advertised the benefits of smoking? Many of you are too young for this one, but at one time in the recent past smoking was advertised as being good for you. Clearly this idea has been disproven by science.
The Kenai king controversy has connected some dots for me. I was born in Alaska in 1950 and raised on the banks of the Kenai River. I have collected empirical data (“a source of knowledge acquired by means of observation”) with regard to Kenai kings and the Kenai River for 63 years. I have witnessed the changes: the tendency over the past 40 years towards overuse, overharvest, and in-river habitat destruction.
Last Friday our legislative delegation held a town hall meeting at Homer council chambers. This was a well attended event, and Rep. Paul Seaton and Sen. Peter Micciche fielded many questions from constituents.