MRAK Almanac: Rallies for PFD, others for state spending


The MRAK Almanac is your place for political, cultural, and civic events, where you’ll meet political leaders or, if you are interested in getting to know your state, these are great places to meet conservative- and moderate-leaning Alaskans.

Denali Climbing Report—the final issue:

As of last Friday, there were 122 climbers still on Denali. A total of 1,107 climbs have been completed this season with 697 hardy mountaineers reaching the summit of North America’s highest peak. That makes for a summit percentage of 63 percent, which considering all that can go wrong at 20,000 feet, is not too bad. The 2019 climbing season is now complete.

From the National Park Service: “All basecamp managers are DONE and out for the season!”

7/8: Regular meeting of the Fairbanks City Council at 6:30 pm. The agenda is set to include public comment on marijuana cultivator Goodsinse’s application for renewal, as well as proposed ordinance 6109 which removes the city tax cap. Agenda here.

7/8: An evening lecture with brothers Terrence and Dermot Cole at the UAF Davis Concert Hall—7 pm. Come if you agree with them, and also if you don’t. Should be an interesting time. Facebook link here.

7/8: Full PFD rally at Newcomb Park in Wasilla, starting at 11 am. Free hot dogs and beverages for those who bring a sign in support of a statutory PFD. Further info here.

7/8: Regular meeting of the Seward City Council, starting at 7 pm. Read the agenda here.

7/8: The Wasilla City Council will gavel in for a regular meeting at 6 pm. On tap for tonight is discussion of a new domestic animal ordinance and the acceptance of new funds from the Mat-Su Borough. Find the agenda here.

7/8: Override the Vetoes Rally at the Fairbanks Legislative Information Office. Organized by the UAF student government, and will run all day beginning at 9 am.

7/8: Regular meeting of the Ketchikan City Council at 7 pm. Read the agenda here.

7/8: Veto override rally at Lake Wasilla, beginning at 6:30 pm. Further details here.

7/8: The Alaska Interior Marksmanship Committee is sponsoring a Bring Whatcha Got Pistol Shoot at the ADF&G shooting range in Fairbanks. Fee to participate is $15, and the event begins at 7 pm. Facebook link here.

7/8: Veto override rally outside the Capitol Building in Juneau. Starts at noon. Read more here.

7/8: Demonstrate your support for Governor Mike Dunleavy by showing up at Wasilla Middle School at 1 pm. The Mat-Su Republican Women’s Club will be offering free refreshments outside. Facebook link here.

7/9: Regular meeting of the Anchorage Assembly at 5 pm. The agenda is packed, but highlights include a proposed resolution in opposition to Governor Dunleavy’s vetoes for the FY2020 state budget and a proposed ordinance increasing the age for tobacco purchases to 21. Read the full agenda here.

7/9: Regular meeting of the Sitka Assembly, gaveling in at 6 pm. Find the agenda at this link.

7/9: Interested in working for the 2020 U.S. Census? There will be an informational presentation at the Mat-Su Job Center at 11 am.

7/9: The Palmer City Council will hold a regular meeting at 7 pm. The council is set to hold another public hearing on the proposal to enact term limits for the city mayor and council members, which may appear as a non-binding advisory question on the October 1 ballot. Full agenda here.

7/9: The State of Alaska Alcoholic Beverage Control Board will meet in Fairbanks at 9am in the FNSB assembly chambers. Read the agenda here.

7/9: Want to (safely) stare at the sun? There will be a specialized solar telescope at the Soldotna Public Library from 2:30-3:30 pm for the public to enjoy, with expert Andy Veh present to explain how it works. Read more here.

7/9: Monthly meeting of the Alaska Sports Car Club in Anchorage at 7 pm. Further details here.

7/9: Regular meeting of the Kodiak Island Borough Assembly at 6:30 pm. The assembly will be hearing a report on their 2019 state audit, as well as holding a period of public comment. Find the agenda here.

7/9: 27th annual Alaska Flag Day celebration in Anchorage, hosted by AK Child & Family. There will be food, games, and fun for the whole family starting at 5:30 pm. Further details here.

7/9: The North Slope Borough, Alaska’s largest organized borough, will hold a regular assembly meeting at 1:30 pm. Agenda includes a monthly financial report, as well as public comment on several ordinance proposals. Find the draft packet here.

7/9: Override the Vetoes rally at the Alaska Airlines Center in Anchorage. Starts at 5:30 pm. Live music by Portugal. The Man (Lords of Portland). More info here.

7/9: Lunch on the Lawn at the Anchorage Library, starting at 11:30 am. There will be free live music and fun for the whole family. Food trucks will also be present with interesting local cuisine.

7/9: The Mat-Su Electric Association will hold an informational meeting on their current clearing and easement efforts underway in the Chugiak and Eagle River communities. Begins at 6 pm at Jitters in Eagle River, more information here.

7/9: Anchorage Young Professionals monthly networking meeting starting at 4 pm at the Anchorage Chamber of Commerce. Open to both members and non-members of the Anchorage Chamber. Read more here.

7/9: Regular meeting of the Bethel City Council at 6:30 pm. The council will consider changes to the Bethel alcoholic beverage code and hear an update on the search for a new city attorney. Find the agenda here.

Alaska History Archive:

July 8, 1898—121 years ago: Jefferson Randolph “Soapy” Smith, known to most Alaskans simply as Soapy Smith, died in Skagway at the age of 37—the result of a fatal gunshot wound to the chest. Smith was well known in the Old West as a gangster and trickster, and got his name from the famous “Prize Soap” racket in which he would wrap a bar of soap with a $100 bill, throw it in a bin with hundreds of normal soap bars, and charge onlookers to try and find the prize bar. After conning a Skagway miner out of a sack of gold and refusing to return it, he was shot in the chest by a local guard. To this day, you can visit Smith’s grave at the Skagway cemetery.  

July 8, 1923—96 years ago: President Warren G. Harding arrived in Alaska, making history by becoming the first president to visit the territory while in office. Dubbed the “Voyage of Understanding” by Harding’s administration, the trip included several stops in southeast Alaska and a rail trip from Seward to Fairbanks in order to see the new University of Alaska, then only six years old. During his visit, Harding also drove in the famous Golden Spike, signifying the end of construction for the Alaska Railroad.


  1. Yes, this conversation is both good and needed. Alaskans voted for Mike Dunleavy. Now Governor Dunleavy is doing exactly what he said he would do. Yet the House Speaker and the Senate President are doing all they can to defeat that, to prevent the voters having their way. This story probably ends with ballot measures that go far further than anything imagined today by the House Speaker and the Senate President. Alaska voters are fearful of stupid legislators; those who would have a state income tax concurrent with the PFD, paying state employees to pursue and rob everyone who works while paying other state employees to hand out checks to everyone regardless of effort or initiative. Alaska voters are tired of paying property taxes while entire regions of the state have no property tax, not only villages but Barrow and Kotzebue. Alaska voters are tired of paying $30,000 and more a year for health insurance, with a $10,000 deductible so it’s no insurance at all, while others have government paid health care and complain. The House Speaker and the Senate President want to make it more and more silly to work at all; that is the end result of their policies. The House Speaker warns us that if the vetoes stand we will see fundamental change; we voted for fundamental change of exactly the kind the House Speaker fears. We voted to take Alaska back from the interest groups. I applaud every Legislator meeting in Wasilla today – they are the real Alaskans, true to the brand. Remember, Bernie won the Democratic primary here but he fell far short of winning the general election; please tell that to the House Speaker and the Senate President as clearly they missed that. Thank you for allowing me to have a Monday morning rant.

    • Well said. They are so out of touch it is actually shocking. Ok, you should make copies of what you wrote and fax it to every law breaking elected official sitting in Juneau right now.

    • The House Speaker is a special interest, Left-wing Democrat. Period. Any Republican who joins his group in Juneau, and opposes the governor, is an abject fool…..and will be shown the door in 2020. Are you listening…..Tammy Wilson?

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