By JOHN QUICK
Sen. Jesse Kiehl complimented Gov. Mike Dunleavy on his teachers’ bonus bill and thinks it is doable, if Dunleavy was open to a couple of tweaks.
The bill, a pilot program that would pay teachers bonuses of up to $15,000 a year, is something Dunleavy sees as an investment in the classrooms across Alaska. Some education leaders say they would rather have a per-student investment in the form of “base student allocation” money.
Kiehl says he understands the conservatives’ perspective as it relates to more money for districts, without accompanying accountability. As an example, someone in the Juneau schools misappropriated money (and was fired subsequently).
This new episode of the Must Read Alaska Show with host John Quick features an in-depth conversation with Sen. Kiehl, shedding light on the distinctive role and experiences of representing Alaska’s capital city, Senate Seat Q, which also covers the northern half of Southeast Alaska, including communities of Haines, Gustavus, Klukwan, and Skagway.
Kiehl discusses the unique challenges and advantages of serving in a location only accessible by air and sea, emphasizing the importance of the Alaska Marine Highway for connectivity.
Sen. Kiehl outlines his key objectives for the legislative session, and elaborates on the urgency of enhancing Alaska’s energy infrastructure. The conversation also covers Juneau’s path to tourism resurgence post-pandemic, particularly the impact of the absence and return of cruise ships on the local economy.
This dialogue offers a look into Sen. Kiehl’s legislative priorities, the intricacies of governing Alaska’s capital, and the broader implications for the state’s future.