Gov. Mike Dunleavy brought former senior advisor Brett Huber back into the fold last week to lead and coordinate the State of Alaska’s plan to reassert control of lands and waters, and to push back on federal overregulation.
Huber had been gone for several months from the Governor’s Office, returning as the senior policy advisor for statehood defense. Recently, Huber ran a political organization attempting to educate Alaskans about the hazards of Ballot Measure 2, the overhaul of Alaska’s voting methods. Voters passed that measure narrowly, ushering in a jungle primary and ranked choice voting in the General Election. Huber had been Dunleavy’s campaign manager in 2018.
Dunleavy emphasized the importance of defending the state’s role over lands and waters in his State of the State Address this year to Alaskans, and wrote President Biden a formal letter in March, expressing the State of Alaska’s intent to manage the more than 800,000 miles of navigable rivers and 30 million acres of navigable lakes that is within the state’s authority, which was affirmed in the 2019 Supreme Court decision Sturgeon v Frost.
On Wednesday, Governor Dunleavy announced the State of Alaska is suing the U.S. Department of Interior for its unilateral extension of land restrictions to 28 million acres of federal land within the state.
“I look forward to supporting Governor Dunleavy in Alaska’s defense against an encroaching and overreaching federal government, and further assisting as he ensures the Last Frontier has a robust future for generations to come,” Huber said.
Huber has three decades’ worth of experience in public policy with a focus on state and federal issues. He served as chief of staff to a number Alaska State Senate leaders, and as an advisor to leaders in the Alaska Legislature on land, fish, and wildlife issues.
The Alaska Legislature in its operating budget agreed with Dunleavy’s proposal to allocate $4 million for the Statehood Defense Initiative, which would involve the Departments of Natural Resources, Law, and Fish & Game among others.