Local News

Republican majority ousts Stedman from Finance post

State Sen. Bert Stedman, R-Sitka

The new Republican majority in the Alaskan senate has ousted Sitka’s Bert Stedman from his leadership position on the Finance Committee.

The eleven members of the new majority named senators Kevin Meyer and Pete Kelly as co-chairs of the powerful Finance Committee – seats formerly occupied by Stedman, and Bethel Democrat Lyman Hoffman.

Stedman was one of six Republicans who previously joined with the ten Democrats in the senate to form a bipartisan majority – a rare circumstance in US politics.

The bipartisan coalition antagonized non-members, the Governor, and House Republicans by resisting efforts to restructure taxes on North Slope oil production in favor of the oil industry.

Gov. Parnell, a Republican, has been actively campaigning this election season to break the senate bipartisan coalition.

The new majority made their announcement near the end of the workday Wednesday afternoon (11-7-12). Sen. Stedman was in Anchorage, and could not be immediately reached for comment.

In a news release, Sen. Lesil McGuire, who was just named Rules Chair, said: “If Lewis and Clark were alive today, they would surely be looking at the Arctic as the new frontier, and our senate caucus intends to do just that.”

Also losing his seat in the new senate majority is former Senate President Gary Stevens, a Republican from Kodiak. He’ll be replaced by Charlie Huggins of Wasilla.

Comments

Please read our comment guidelines.

Recent News

Searchers suspect hiker fell to his death

The body of a missing hiker was found by searchers in Sitka on Friday afternoon (09-23-16). SAR captain Lance Ewers believes Hansen slipped while hiking off-trail on his way down Mt. Verstovia. more

UPDATE: Body of missing hiker found

Michael Hansen was last seen leaving his apartment at 10:30 a.m. Monday. His vehicle was found at the trailhead, off Sawmill Creek Road, at noon today , 9-20-16. (Courtesy Sitka Search and Rescue)
The body of Michael Hansen was found by searchers earlier today (09/23/16). Hansen’s family has been notified of his death and the investigation is ongoing. more