Anchorage Assembly awards $1.15 million of Covid-19 federal relief funds to Alaska Black Caucus to do vaccine outreach - Must Read Alaska
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Saturday, July 24, 2021
HomePoliticsAnchorage Assembly awards $1.15 million of Covid-19 federal relief funds to Alaska Black Caucus to do vaccine outreach

Anchorage Assembly awards $1.15 million of Covid-19 federal relief funds to Alaska Black Caucus to do vaccine outreach

It’s been a good month for the Alaska Black Caucus. The Anchorage Assembly on Tuesday awarded the newly restarted group a $1.154 million no-bid award to do outreach to the community regarding the Covid-19 vaccine availability.

That’s on top of an earlier award of $437,500 in federal relief fund to help the group purchase a building for its nonprofit activities. Together, that’s nearly $1.6 million to the fledgling organization.

The Alaska Black Caucus is arguably a surrogate for the Alaska Democratic Party. Its President Celeste Hodge Growden signed the recall petition against Gov. Mike Dunleavy, and has been a political activist for a long time, working on various campaigns for Democrats and as a legislative aide to Bettye Davis. She was an aide to Sen. Mark Begich and worked in his office when he was mayor of Anchorage as his Equal Opportunity Office director.

It’s also a group that is now a big beneficiary of Covid-19 relief funds that could have gone to help struggling businesses pay their property taxes.

The $1.1 million appropriation has no deliverables except to reach out to the community to spread the word about how to get a Covid-19 vaccination. This, at a time when everyone who wants a vaccination has gotten one. About 42 percent of Alaskans have been vaccinated, and nearly 70 percent of Anchorage residents over the age of 65 have been vaccinated. Black Alaskans lag in getting the vaccine, however, but the data is not especially good in this department.

The grant agreement with ABC will support “community outreach and education, data collection and analysis, vaccination clinics, and other services related to COVID-19 vaccine, testing, and mitigation efforts. The purpose of the program is to: Improve efforts and increase access to COVID-19 testing in the community; Build capacity to increase access to COVID-19 vaccine in the community; Implement strategies that decrease health inequities, as well as other COVID-19 related recovery and prevention strategies.” Most certainly it is also to do political work.

Read: Anchorage Assembly buys building for Alaska Black Caucus

The award fulfills the wishes of Assemblyman Felix Rivera who last year stated that the CARES Act funds had to be used to address racial inequality or they would not receive his vote.

Although there appear to be no deliverables in the grant, the group has put together a website with information about vaccines. The website states that the ABC strongly recommends people get the vaccine.

Read: Assemblyman Rivera says CARES Act funds must address racial inequality

Read: During meeting, Rivera slams down gavel on Assemblywoman Allard comments

Other groups receiving funds included the Alaska Literacy Program, for similar vaguely defined services.

For the $238,937 sole source grant, the ALP will “support work within English Language Learners communities and one-on-one with individuals to increase trust of the COVID-19 vaccine, assist with access to the vaccination, and provide access to accurate COVID-19 health information. The grant agreement amount is for $238,937 for the period of July 1, 2021 through June 30, 2022.”

The Anchorage Neighborhood Health Center also received a grant, for $2,447,984. The agreement with the Municipality is that the group will do staff training, facility renovation, equipment, technology upgrades, and client engagement “to improve COVID-19 vaccine, testing, and mitigation efforts.” The grant extends from March 15 through June 30, 2022.

Another group receiving a sole source grant is the Conquer COVID Coalition, for a total of $1,260,000 for services related to COVID-19 testing and vaccination access for the Municipality of Anchorage Health Department. This grant is to pay for public relations campaigns to increase testing and vaccination.

The Conquer COVID Coalition is made up of a number of businesses and nonprofits based in Anchorage, everything from the Downtown Partnership to the Alaska Oil and Gas Association, and GCI to the Lucky Wishbone restaurant.

United Way of Anchorage also received a grant for $3,682,417 for services related to testing and vaccination access.

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Suzanne Downing had careers in business and journalism before serving as the Director of Faith and Community-based Initiatives for Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and returning to Alaska to serve as speechwriter for Gov. Sean Parnell. Born on the Oregon coast, she moved to Alaska in 1969.

Latest comments

  • Perfect!

  • Payoff to not have riots in Anchorage?

  • Just think of the Anchorage citizens as a solid piece of wood, freshly cut and sectioned from a fallen tree. Then visualize the Assembly as a splitting maul used to separate that large, intact log into one or more pieces. That maul is the Assembly as they dole out millions of dollars to virtue signal and race bait segments of our population, segregating one from the other, for no good purpose. And Rivera’s racism contingency is nothing short of extortion. How he wasn’t recalled eludes me. Enjoy your feckless little tyrant District 4 voters.

  • So glad I’m not living in Anchorage and funding this crap with my tax dollars.

  • Pissaway money from the feds, with more than a racist overtone. These people are utterly shameless.

  • We have over 590 Republicans in prison because they were present at the Capitol building on January 6. Nobody can prove they did anything riot related.

    At the same time Democrat district attorneys around the country released blacks and antifa members from jail in spite of their crimes and violence. Almost 200 looters in New York were released from custody because NYC didn’t want the headache of prosecuting a bunch of blacks.

    Now we have the Fools of the Anchorage Assembly showing political favoritism in distributing money intended for all Alaskans. This one sided behavior where tax dollars are distributed based on partisan politics has got to stop.

    We need a class action lawsuit against the Anchorage Assembly for the violation of whites rights under the 1964 Equal Rights Act.

  • Where is planned parenthood in this list or is it covered by the United Way Grant..??

  • Hope the auditors are well trained to hold these people to the number count and fire them when they fail to comply.

  • James, There’s no escape. Remember the Constitution:

    “We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect union….promote the general Welfare…do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America,” and:

    “The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States….”

    It’s CARES money. No matter where you live, you’re all in. Hope I made your day.

  • They sure are good at giving other people’s money away.

  • A pathetic rip off of funds that could actually benefit Anchorage as a whole if spent wisely!

  • The MOA just gave away $8,783,338. All to tell us to get tested and poked in the arm.

  • Sounds like another scam to line the pockets of their Democrat friends with.
    I’m pretty sure that black people know that they can get the vaccine if they want it. This is just stupid. And if I was a black person I would be offended.

  • Also this is an old tactic of Democrats money laundering. Just like they do on the national level with taxpayer funded dollars for planned Parenthood, who in return stuffs the coffers of the Democrat Party.

  • Wait…. the blacks need more money to get a covid shot? Why can’t they just make an appointment then stand in line like everyone else?

  • Respectfully disagree, Brad…
    .
    Splitting maul’s useful for something, plus you don’t need it all the time.
    .
    Carpenter ants, termites, there’s your visualization.
    .
    Useless, structure-destroying pests, damned expensive to fix what they wreck, hard to get rid of them…
    .
    Maybe the whole rotten mess’ll collapse after Eaglexit, then survivors can start over.

  • The racist wheel gets the grease.

  • When will this madness stop?!!!

  • “Wild about Anchorage” is about the unethical racist assembly.

  • Just a boat load of crap. I’m glad I live in the valley, but I do have rentals in Anchorage so I do have a vested interest in Anchorage. I sure hope the new adult supervision coming in can get a handle on these bogus boondoggles.

  • Slow news day, MRAK, so why not have some fun and troll your readers with a little red meat? Let’s draw out some animosity and opprobrium, just to make the day complete.

  • The vax

    We keep arguing over the vax
    Both sides presenting their facts
    Some say it’s safe haven
    Others acting quite craven
    But the arguing only detracts

    They keep moving goalposts around
    Trying to find solid ground
    Soon they’ll be vaxxing the womb
    To stay out of the tomb
    As the approved age keeps moving down

    Next is cash to the ABC
    More dacovid vax money you see
    Thanks to Rivera
    Where’s my aloe vera
    More arse-burn from the assembly

    They have more money to burn
    Pass it out before they adjourn
    Will they put it to good use?
    I suspect another ruse
    Spend it before Bronson gets a turn

  • When do we get an Alaska White Caucus? Oh wait, that would be racist. But an Alaska Black caucus isn’t, for some reason. This is just another way keep races separate and hostile toward one another. And this Anchorage assembly, composed of witches, hags and the usual evil doers, are the scourge of the city.

  • Every wonder if promoting the black caucus, white caucus, men’s caucus women’s caucus, xyz caucus is supporting discrimination?
    I support only the US citizen caucus.

  • Sophie I was going to say the same thing to James.
    Yes it’s your federal dollars paying for this bunch of crap. Plus they got a new building too.
    Maybe they can build us all, a new home too, with all this covid money there spreading around.
    More waste, yes your tax dollars. From all walks of people, Red, Yellow, Black, and White.
    Ps whidbey maybe you need to get a life yourself.

  • Dog, why do you have such a hard on for Suzanne and MRAK? Perhaps you’re the one that’s having a slow day and come out from underneath your bridge to troll.

  • Today, the editorial decision of many liberal medias to capitalize “Black” but not “white” or “brown” is a weird form of semantic racism. It is also annoying to see the term “Latinx.” I doubt many Latinos or Latinas in our country favor it. In fact, no other group has been subjected to such ambiguity.

  • Only a moron, or a die hard leftist, could defend this blatant corruption..but I repeat myself..

  • I wonder if when the Black Caucus donates money to the Democratic Party or Dem candidates, that money will come from this covid money? Also wonder if the Feds will match those donations with tax payer money if the “For the People Act” or something like it passes. Maybe an auditor can track it.

  • One may report suspected fraud, waste, and abuse of federal funds by submitting this form to the General Accounting Office:
    .
    gao-fais.entellitrak.com/etk-gao-fais-prod/page.request.do?page=page.efileConfidentialNoRestrictionComplainantForm
    .
    Reporting can be open, confidential, or anonymous.
    .
    People with information not available to the general public about Covid-19 federal relief fraud, waste, and abuse might make a -lot- of money by filing a successful qui tam lawsuit.
    .
    What the Assembly did may leave members liable to federal prosecution if GAO or the Treasury Department decide the money was deliberately misappropriated.
    .
    Seems worth a try… what do we have to lose?

  • Why does this cost $1.15 million dollars? Wouldn’t it be cheaper to just offer direct cash payments to people to get vaccinated? There must be more than unvaccinated 10,000 persons of color who would get the shot for $100; and that would still save $150,000.

  • Alaska once a remarkable tale of fellowship, grit, and survival. Who brings their doomed menace to a paradise? Humans. Stop making it about complexions. The only ones who benefit are the gossips.

  • It’s just another money laundering scheme. The democrat politicians give a bunch of public money to left wing partisan groups. Then those groups fund democrat political campaigns with that money.

  • @Dan Baldwin
    You hit the mail on the head. Money laundering. Where are the consequences for this illegal transaction?

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