Homer Alaska - Business

Story last updated at 5:07 PM on Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Pebble mine opponents fined $25,500 by APOC




ANCHORAGE (AP) The Alaska Public Offices Commission has assessed a $25,500 fine to an opponent of the proposed Pebble mine in southwest Alaska.

The Anchorage Daily News reports the commission determined that Bob Gillam's private air service inappropriately flew anti-Pebble candidates into villages to campaign by not charging them full fare, only the costs of fuel. The commission concluded that undercharging the candidates was an illegal corporate campaign contribution by Gillam's air service, RBG Bush Planes LLC.

A spokesman for mine foes says the fine will be appealed in Superior Court. Art Hackney says the candidates were hitching rides on previously scheduled trips.

He says rural Alaskans will be hampered meeting voters if they have to raise vast sums to pay inflated travel costs and can't accept rides from neighbors.

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