Mayor’s plan: 42 days locked down unless conditions met

In 2016, Mayor Ethan Berkowitz rallied for Union Boss Vince Beltrami as he mounted an unsuccessful attempt to win a seat in the Alaska Senate.

Mayor Ethan Berkowitz of Anchorage has a plan: Anchorage will stay hunkered down until his conditions are met:

Before anything more can open up in the commercial world, there would need to be 14 days of a decline in the coronavirus case count in Anchorage. Berkowitz’ plan demands that “widespread” testing is available in Anchorage, although he is not specific about what the criteria is for “widespread.” He says the hospitals must have enough intensive care unit beds to meet the capacity if there’s a surge in cases of COVID-19.

Further, Berkowitz will keep the city locked down until he is sure that positive COVID-19 cases are identified and all of those person’s contacts are being monitored. Anyone with symptoms would need to be tested within 24 hours.

If those conditions cannot be met, Anchorage citizens will remain ordered to stay their homes, as they currently are, and only to leave for occasions such as fresh-air walks and groceries. Only “essential workers” should be out and about in town. The current status of Anchorage is laid out in the mayor’s chart:

To get to the first phase of reopening Anchorage, Phase One, things have to be clearly on the mend. If so, in 14 days Berkowitz would allow “low-risk” businesses, with strict physical distancing regulations in place, to open. A few restaurants may open if the staff wears masks and cleans well. Some personal service care would start up again, and some “non-public-facing” businesses could open, with the requirement that all employees wear face coverings and limit the size of gatherings.

Also, in this phase, some non-emergency or non-urgent medical procedures could proceed in Anchorage, although the governor has already released that health mandate and the mayor’s mandate is in conflict with the governor on this topic.

Also, in Phase One, low-risk outdoor recreation activities are allowed. Golf, perhaps, but not basketball. People might be able to play tennis, but not rugby.

Limited travel would be allowed, but no gatherings of more than 20 people, and Anchorage would not be able to move out of Phase One lockdown for nearly another month. Cases would have to be trending downward for a full 28 days. Here’s what Berkowitz envisions for Phase One:

With the first 14 days and the next 28 days, Anchorage will remain in a partial paralysis for 42 days under the Berkowitz Plan.

If everyone behaves, the city can graduate to Phase Two. This is when sports and recreation can be allowed if physical distancing is followed. Health services would resume normal operations, although once again, the governor has already allowed doctors to see patients, and it’s doubtful Berkowitz can interfere with the medical community.

At some point, Berkowitz would allow the city to move into Phase Three and Phase Four, some semblance of normalcy, when schools may reopen and there is no restriction on domestic travel. Phase Three is when widespread community transmission is no longer present in Anchorage:

Between Sunday and Monday there was one case of coronavirus in Anchorage, and the Berkowitz lockdown appears to remain in place. Economists predict that 75 percent of family-owned businesses will not reopen their doors at the end of the pandemic lockdown, and that bankruptcies will spike.


  1. When the Governor’s and Mayor’s rules are so different whose do we follow? Do we have live in the Matsu to be able to get back to living again?

    • A version of this question was asked of the a Governor yesterday. He artfully avoided answering it directly by saying that he had been talking to the Mayor and MOA and things were working well. It is probably the case, however, that the MOA has largely been PREEMPTED by the State. The MOA will have to show that there are unique facts and circumstances that exist in Anchorage which require different rules. Such a showing will be difficult.

    • Seeing as how the state supersede municipal law, Berkowitz had better concede to the state. Unless he wants legal challenges (don’t see why)

  2. “We shall squeeze you empty, and then we shall fill you with ourselves.”
    George Orwell, 1984

    • Who would have known his words would have been SO prophetic of the last 20 years? Amazing. Great comment/quote.

      • I hope Attorney General Barr is closely monitoring Berkowitz’s dictatorship as it is infringing on the Constitution and our rights as Free People.

  3. Is Berkowitz under the direction of Schumer now? Doing all he can to extend the lock-down in the hopes that voting will only be by mail-in ballot? Does he realize he is financially bankrupting the city and destroying many small businesses. Berkowitz is not working for the betterment of the people, he’s playing politics..

  4. At this pace, Anchorage will be shutting their doors for good on many businesses. I wonder how Gov Dunleavy feels about that approach from this Mayor.

  5. Anchorage, WTH have you done to yourself? You used to be “the last frontier”! Why did you elect this nincompoop to be your mayor? I lived there for over 20 years, a piece of my heart will always be in Alaska, but you have turned on yourself, now it seems that Anchorage is “worse” than Seattle, Portland and San Francisco in your crazy-politics-liberalism. Where have all the clear-thinking conservatives gone?

    • Linda Mae, it’s called mail-in voting.
      The mail-in vote process redefines “easily, readily corruptible”.
      Benefit of the mail-in vote process is the virtual assurance that no bond, tax, or incumbent politician gets left behind.
      Productive Anchorage residents did -not- do it to themselves.
      The People’s Assembly did it to them.

    • Most of us clear-thinking conservatives got smart and moved outside of the Anchorage city limits. We couldn’t take any more of the crazy liberalism that seems to be rampant in Anchorage government these days.

  6. Unrealistic many of the Businesses that are currently shut down will not reopen and those who are still under the shutdown order should refuse to pay the Tax’s until they are allowed to open. Any of those Businesses that are threatened by the Mayor the citizens should step in and knock this Mayor down he is acting like a Dictator.

  7. All according to plan… a virus that is minimally risky to the overwhelming majority of the population will continue to wipe out the community, regardless of mounting evidence this virus is no more of a threat than any other flu we have had. It’s funny, I haven’t heard whether these tests prove current infection or indicate prior infection or both… because if it’s both, widespread testing would certainly prove what everyone already knows: this virus has been around for six months or more, a majority of us have had it this winter, and we just destroyed the economy because this year, the same thing happened as last year, and the year before that, and the year before that. A virus went around in normal viral disease season that was pretty ugly, but it picked off the same people it picks off every single year. To wit: the elderly, the fragile, and a few seemingly healthy ones for good measure. This is ridiculous, and if people in outlying communities don’t see the implications of Anchorage losing up to 75% of their small businesses, wait until it hits where you live. Alaska is a rampant consumerist state that lives hard and plays hard and demands a whole lot of stuff, but it produces little to nothing of the vast amount of goods people buy. That includes food. Clothing. Building materials. A scant few people live subsistence lifestyles here, and the rest live out of the grocery store, just like the rest of Americans. Wait until we have no jobs, no way to pull resources here, and our homes drop in value by 60% because no one has the money to live here and our housing market becomes flooded with foreclosures. In 50 days, most states who continue this lockdown will be dead zones.

    • Deanna,
      Couldn’t have said it better. When the ‘hard times’ really hit (they haven’t yet), especially, your opinions will lend credence to reality. So many Alaskans/Americans are distracted by the Wuhan v “crisis”, the blame game, the “price of oil”, free money, giving tacit approval to someone else to make all the critical decisions “on our behalf” by voting for them, that reality and common sense often escape. When the vote equals ‘leftist’ authority, we’re all in a bind (except ‘public’ employees). The only real solution currently available is to vote these “anti-Americanism” politicians out of authority. Coming soon to a polling booth near you.

    • Interesting points, what makes a dead zone, what’s the problem with dead zone?
      No right or wrong answer, just asking…

  8. Mussolini doesn’t like to give up power. Protests should be held on Wildwood Lane. As far as small businesses go, this is what is called a “Bust Out”; at the end of this there will be no small businesses and home foreclosures will skyrocket. But Mussolini of the North will still want your property taxes. Mussolini’s “Homeless” will be housed in foreclosed homes, apartment bldgs. and hotels rent free. Welcome to Mussolini’s Fascist Utopia of Anchorage.

  9. Screw you Ethan. Interesting how the liberals always want the world to be “fair” and “equitable” only when it fits their agenda. When he applies social distancing and mask requirements to everyone, maybe it will be easier to stomach his ridiculous pressers. Meanwhile, while he threatens us law abiding citizens who don’t comply with his directives, … down on the corner his mask-less subjects are passing around the jug, crapping and whizzing in the streets, trespassing on other peoples property, and ‘public facing’ each other in large groups.

  10. Why is it that 5 minutes ago I felt like doing the polite thing with an eye toward responsible behavior that might benefit that old fat guy w/ the smoker’s hack and now after reading (part of) the shrimp’s mandates I feel the opposite?

    F that clown.

  11. There is no way we can afford to stick to this plan the mayor has come up with. People won’t be in a panic still in a week much less a few months. There is no way this plan is followed.

    I plan to support any business I see open and violating these illegal orders. I moved away from the Lower 48 to not suffer stupid rules, come on Alaska we need to oust this mayor before we lose our small businesses!

  12. If the mayor is going to act like a dictator, he should dress like one. Might I suggest the same tailor as Kim Un Jung.

    • Actually, given Kim’s current health challenges, there may be an opening for his job real soon. We should encourage Ethan to apply for the opening so that we would be rid of him. Cheers –

  13. Suzanne,

    This might sound radical, but is there any movement to help local businesses accept forward payments for services (at a discount or not)?

    A single website for the state, searchable by location-service would really be helpful.

    Or simply a state funded campaign, Preserve Alaska’s Economic Future, Forward Pay

  14. No way can this edict be enforced. Currently there’s only 8 people hospitalized with Covid in Anchorage, and there’s 1200 available beds and the cases are falling each passing day. The economy needs to re-open with social distancing before there’s a total collapse locally. Notice the people that are making these decisions continued to be paid while the rest of us try to feed our families and survive only to sink deeper into despair. This decision should not be allowed to be made by one person, elected or not.

  15. “If a law is unjust, a man is not only right to disobey it, he is obligated to do so.” ~ Thomas Jefferson

    Ethan Berkowitz is not a King and I will not comply! We will not be complicit in the decimation of 75% of small business, just so he can show Dunleavy that Berkowitz is the Supreme Leader of Anchorage. Evil exists because good people do nothing.

  16. I don’t think many of these little tin pot dictators realize that we are approaching a point where responsible citizens are going to ignore them and do what is necessary to get on with our lives. Ruining our economy, shredding our Constitution, encouraging neighbors to snitch on each other will have real consequences that will cost lives and livelihoods and further reduce faith in our government.

    • The first step would be making a point in a way that can’t be ignored. Some sort of banner or sign on local business’ front doors that confirmed a solidarity in viewpoint and a disagreement w/ the straw boss.

      The second step would be taking action.

    • How about “All Business are Essential” and then all businesses open up together on Friday morning? We could do that.

  17. The Mayor is playing us for a fool as he knows that there currently is no 100% reliable test for Covid19. The testing has & is being plagued by up to 80% false positives. He knows that statistically speaking hundreds of new cases will be popping up as Alaska ramps up testing. How many of those cases are real will take weeks, months or maybe years to determine.

  18. Just counted the days ….this seems to put it very close to June 5th when he may lose his “Emergency Powers” but I’m sure that’s just a coincidence.

  19. I will NEVER play Mayor Berkowitz’s stupid games, I WILL go outside without a mask, I will stand closer than 6 feet to others. So he gives me a fine and locks me up so be it! If Alaska has zero new COVID-19 cases, he will never let go of his new found power. Mayor Berkowitz reminds me of Hitler!!!
    Has anyone thought about what Berkowitz and Dunleavy are doing with those COVID-19 test samples? They keep saying they need to test everyone….to collect our DNA is what they are doing. Alaskans are Naïve if they don’t think this is happening. Do put anything past these radicalized politicians.

  20. The “rules” are subjective, not objective. The number of positives can be manipulated by increased testing.
    The mayor isn’t stupid. He got himself elected didn’t he? He sounds to be rather “Machiavellian” to me.
    Follow the money: There’s the usual hoard of vultures (how many are the mayor’s buddies?) with money waiting to snatch up properties at fire sale prices.
    Perhaps this year I can get a nice home with my VA loan guarantee. Maybe even on the hillside?

  21. Self identify as a special type of homeless. One with the oddity of enjoying the freedom of working and boldly openly defecate on dictates of your dictator. Remember self identifying trumps logic and is a protective group.

    Demand the rights and freedoms equal to the homesless by granted by the mayor.

  22. When did Alaska law die and allow the Lord High Mayor of Anchorage to become high sovereign, chief judge and executioner of citizen’s? When did said citizens surrender their rights to the Lord High Mayor?

  23. Until I read this article I was thinking that we were much better off to Michigan. There they taped off sections of the stores that you can’t even go into to buy seeds to start your garden or paint to paint your bedroom because those are nonessential. Now I think we are still better off than Michigan but I have a feeling it’s all the demon crap governors who are out to destroy the world along with Pelosi. I’m an independent I don’t support either political party but I’ll go with the governor now at least he’s doing his part to open the state, whereas berkie seems to be suppressing us further. I do not want to see numbers rise and his plan makes sense if we were like NYC, but opening up some will allow us to see if what we have done has helped protect our state and our town. I think he needs to let the experts decide.

    • Every Alaskan should be thankful that Begich didn’t win in 2018. Otherwise, we’d be subjected to the same tyranny that exists in Michigan, New Jersey and other places where Democrats have gone full Napoleon. Berky can try this crap in Anchorage, put people will be rebelling a lot more than in other places.

  24. Lock down the nursing homes, protect and isolate the vulnerable, Protect the Elders. Open all businesses. Make the necessary cuts to government to match the revenue we take in.
    Stop his madness.

  25. Everyone send an e-mail or contact Attorney General Barr. Our rights are being violated and Mr Barr needs to rein in this little dictator. Contact info

    Had enough of this scam. Yes there is a virus but not a pandemic. Check the true facts. Just another way to try to destroy Trump

  26. When did he become a doctor? The numbers do not justify his demands. I also read in ADN, that he didn’t want to open things up until the vaccines are available. I bet he knows Bill Gates. My body, my choice. We need to day h-ll no!

  27. When will the open Ancorage protests begin? This petty tyrant is ruining the lives of Alaskans for no legitimate reason.

  28. Tony, As a Nail Salon owner, I assure you that we have strict protocol for keeping our clients and out technicians safe. My Wife has 10 years experience and over 250 hours of health and safety training. We use an autoclave to disinfect our metal tools, brand new files and buffers on each and every client. We work buy appointment only, sanitizing thoroughly between clients. We also wear gloves and masks during the entire service. In reopening, our clients will also wear masks and the first thing that they will do upon arrival at the Salon is wash their hands with soap and water. Most of our clients are in fact elderly and they cannot care for their own feet because of various health conditions like, arthritis low flexibility. We like ALL businesses are essential, essential for putting food on the table, a roof over out heads, clothes on our children, gas in our cars and even to pay our taxes. Is it your opinion that we should remain closed and bankrupt?

  29. And he wanted complete control until November????? Yikes. Maybe the assembly should pull back that control from him to May 1st!

  30. You should do an article on Mayor Berkowitz presiding over the greatest economic disaster in Anchorage history in the state least affected by COVID-19.

  31. Rip the band aid off!
    At this point we now know that everything that we were told concerning how dangerous this virus is wrong. We were told that (with social distancing) 2.2 million Americans would die. This is why we needed to destroy our economy. That number has now been lowered to 60K-80K or in the same neighborhood as Seasonal flu. We were told after the Seattle death that we needed to shut everything down and submit to self-incarceration in our homes. We now know that the first deaths occurred much earlier than that and indicate that the virus was spreading as early as November. If we look at the new data coming out concerning population with antibodies we have to ask where Alaska falls into that mix. The studies are showing from 6% (Florida) to 55% (LA) higher infection rate than previously thought. Alaska had the same huge spike in Influenza Like Illness that California had in late December and early January. New York and Florida did not so one could extrapolate that Alaska would track more like California.
    We need antibody testing. It has to be easy to get which is not how the State health officials laid it out. How hard would it be for an Alaskan resident to go to their MyAlaska portal (they can do it for the PFD so why not? Click on a button “Test for Antibodies” and get a form that they can take to any testing facility to be tested. That form can have any type of tracking number that the State decides. To get the best results it has to be quick and easy and if the results in Alaska track anywhere near the areas that have already started to release results it begs the question: “Why are we doing what we are doing”?
    There is no question concerning 80% of the US deaths were elderly or had other health issues. They are the at risk people and they need to take precautionary steps. I honestly believe that that day that the man died in Seattle he was not the only death. We had logic and common sense die that day as well.

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