Big Lake, Alaska and The Susitna Valley News, Weather, Events, And More

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Monday, February 19 2018 @ 12:56 AM AKST


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New "Farm to Restaurant" publication available to assist Alaska farmers

Alaska Business(Palmer, AK) – The Division of Agriculture, in collaboration with the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation, has developed a new publication to assist Alaska farmers seeking to sell their products to restaurants.

The free, online Farm to Restaurant Fact Sheet is organized by product and explains the necessary steps that must be taken before products can be sold to restaurants. The fact sheet includes web links to regulatory requirements as well as contact information for relevant agencies and USDA-approved slaughter and pasteurization facilities located in Alaska.
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Bill Sets Standards for Massage Therapists

Alaska BusinessAugust 11, 2014, Anchorage, Alaska – Governor Sean Parnell today signed legislation establishing a board and licensing requirements for massage therapists. Alaska joins 45 other states in setting standards for the massage therapy profession. House Bill 328 is sponsored by Representative Ben Nageak.

Governor Parnell also signed several resolutions.
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Growth in Alaska licensure indicates strong business climate

Alaska BusinessThe number of business licenses in Alaska has increased for the fifth consecutive year, up 15 percent since 2009, according to director Sara Chambers of the Division of Corporations, Business and Professional Licensing. 68,503 businesses were registered in the state in fiscal year 2014, which ended June 30.

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Governor Parnell Protects Alaskan Jobs

Alaska BusinessAugust 4, 2014, Anchorage, Alaska – Governor Sean Parnell today signed legislation to better protect working Alaskans and help Alaska businesses grow.

House Bill 47 protects working Alaskans and Alaska’s businesses from frivolous lawsuits by requiring security to be posted if a restraining order, preliminary injunction, or order staying the operator of a permit is sought against an industrial operation. Supported by the Resource Development Council and the Alaska Chamber of Commerce, the legislation better balances the legal playing field without infringing on any party’s right to bring a legitimate issue to court.

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Governor Signs Bill Helping Alaska Businesses

Alaska BusinessJuly 31, 2014, Anchorage, Alaska – Governor Sean Parnell simplified Alaska business license applications by signing House Bill 32 (HB 32).

HB 32, sponsored by Rep. Mia Costello, allows multiple kinds of businesses to be conducted under one business license. This will streamline the application process for business licensing, making it more efficient and cost-effective for Alaskans.
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Alaska Visitors Reach an All - Time High

Alaska BusinessVisitors to Alaska reached an all-time high of 1,966,700 visitors between May 1, 2013 and April 30, 2014, according to a report recently released by the Alaska Division of Economic Development. The Interim Visitor Volume Report 2013-14 shows that visitation exceeded the previous peak of 1,961,500 visitors, set during 2007-08, by more than 5,000 visitors.

“Alaska’s tourism industry enjoyed a robust 2013,” said Susan Bell, Department of Commerce, Community, and Economic Development (DCCED) Commissioner. “Increased cruise ship calls and new air service, including domestic and international routes, are driving the growth.”

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Port MacKenzie Proves itself by taking on Sixteen Miles of Cement Pipe

Alaska BusinessMat-Su—For five days, starting on July 2, sixteen miles of cement coated pipe were successfully off-loaded from a Panamanian Vessel at Port MacKenzie. After five days of work, the pipe now rests on the recently expanded Port MacKenzie barge dock awaiting transfer to a working barge sixteen miles northwest of Nikiski. From there it will be welded together and run underwater from a new natural gas oil platform to Nikiski. The pipe originated in South Korea before making its way to Mexico for the cement coating. The warm temperatures there were needed to properly cure the cement which took three months.

King Hufford III of West Pac Logistics was contracted to bring the vessel in, discharge the pipe then ground it on the barge dock. He says Port MacKenzie was the optimal choice for its large lay-down space. There were eight acres available for this project which provided ample space to maneuver the equipment around the rows of pipe.

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Small Businesses to Benefit from Tourism Bill

Alaska BusinessAnchorage, Alaska – Continuing his commitment to grow Alaska’s tourism economy and create more opportunities for Alaskans and Alaska businesses, Governor Sean Parnell today signed several bills into law, including Senate Bill 194, legislation establishing the Alaska Tourism Marketing Board within the Department of Commerce, Community, and Economic Development. Among other things, the board will be charged with encouraging the expansion and growth of Alaska’s visitor industry and maximizing the number of Alaskans employed in tourism. Senator Lesil McGuire sponsored the legislation.

Governor Parnell also signed other legislation, including:

Senate Bill 106, sponsored by Senator Kevin Meyer, allows individuals who hold a state lease to purchase the land before the state conveys the land to a municipality.

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Mat - Su Health Services Recognized for Workplace Safety

Alaska BusinessJUNEAU, Alaska—Labor and Workforce Development Commissioner Dianne Blumer approved Mat-Su Health Services, Inc. for the Alaska Occupational Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program as a result of outstanding employee safety and health programs.

“Mat-Su Health is gratified to be recognized for our long-standing commitment toward creating and maintaining a safe environment for our staff,” Chief Executive Officer Kevin Munson said.
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Attorney General Welcomes Supreme Court Ruling Against EPA

Alaska BusinessRuling prevents EPA from adding small businesses into greenhouse gas agenda

(Anchorage, Alaska) Attorney General Michael Geraghty applauded the U.S. Supreme Court’s reversal of the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) attempt to overstep its statutory authority in regulating greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. In a sharply worded opinion, the Court ruled that the EPA cannot circumvent the legislative process by unilaterally extending its authority without any congressional action.

“How we as a nation deal with the global threat posed by GHG is a matter for our elected representatives,” Attorney General Geraghty said. “This case reaffirms the important principle that regulatory agencies like the EPA are not authorized to rewrite laws like the Clean Air Act to suit their purposes.”
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Gov. Signs Workers’ Compensation Legislation

Alaska BusinessJune 23, 2014, Juneau, Alaska – In an effort to relieve some of the burden on small employers, Governor Sean Parnell today signed House Bill 141, dealing with workers’ compensation.

By defining the rates for out-of-state services, HB 141 eliminates the potential for workers’ compensation claims provided in another state to be billed at Alaska’s higher rates for the same service. Alaska has some of the highest premiums in the nation. The bill helps small employers by creating more stability and predictability when dealing with workers’ compensation claims. HB 141 was sponsored by the House Labor and Commerce Committee, chaired by Representative Kurt Olson. Senator John Coghill sponsored companion legislation in the Senate.
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"New Family Business!" Big Lake Boat Rental.

Alaska BusinessSubmitted by Kim-Patrick Dooley: "New Family Business!
Big Lake Boat Rental. (907) 947-9601.
Enjoy Big Lake, Ak on a Pontoon Party Boat!"
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Alaska to Launch Business Retention and Expansion Program

Alaska BusinessIn September, Government leaders and economic development practitioners will have a new tool to monitor business health and economic activity in their communities. The Department of Commerce, Community, and Economic Development (DCCED) announced its plan to launch a statewide business retention and expansion (BRE) program, according to Joe Jacobson, Director of the Division of Economic Development.

BRE programs are a key resource and have an essential role in the overall economic development strategy and planning process by assisting communities better understand local economies. This process allows communities to analyze key factors in their local economy and develop strategies to encourage growth and expansion of local business and industry.

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Maritime Workforce Plan Identifies 23 Priority Occupations

Alaska BusinessJUNEAU, Alaska—A recent study found that Alaska ranks third in the nation in per capita maritime jobs. Representing 70,000 jobs in Alaska, the maritime industry includes seafood harvesters, processors, marine occupations, support jobs and research, enhancement and management.

Maritime industry groups, along with five state agencies – Labor and Workforce Development, Fish and Game, Transportation and Public Facilities, Education and Early Development, and Commerce, Community and Economic Development – and the University of Alaska, worked together for two years to develop a strategic plan to support this critical workforce.

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Thanks Gov Parnell For Investment in Rail

Alaska BusinessMAT-SU—With the news today of Alaska Governor Sean Parnell’s final state budget, the Matanuska-Susitna Borough thanks Gov. Parnell for continuing to invest in our state’s transportation infrastructure. He chose to direct $30 million in state appropriations to the Port MacKenzie Rail Extension, along with appropriations for other worthy Borough projects.

This rail link will shorten the distance for bulk resources from the Interior to tidewater, making development feasible. Port Mac Rail will bring tremendous economic benefit to Alaska through economic diversification and state revenues. The value of mineral production is projected to be nearly $1 billion a year over the next 100 years.
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