Monthly Archives: December 2013

The Monthly Lead: Retaining SB 21 is the right decision, if …

Through last month, I wrote a monthly op-ed column on oil, gas and fiscal policy issues for the Alaska Business Monthly.  I have suspended that column while some talk about me running for Governor (ABM’s policy understandably is to discontinue any “writings” by formally announced, or potential candidates).   In the meantime I am continuing to write a lead monthly article for the blog, called “The Monthly Lead.”  This is the first such piece.

Parnell SB 21

With certification this fall by the Division of Elections, the question of whether to repeal Senate Bill (SB) 21 – the oil tax reform enacted and signed by the Governor earlier this year – will be put to a statewide vote next August.  The issue on the ballot will be “Should this law [SB 21] be rejected?”  A “yes” vote will be to repeal SB 21; a “no” vote will be to retain it.

If SB 21 is rejected, Alaska’s oil tax approach will revert to ACES (Alaska’s Clear and Equitable Share), the state tax policy enacted in 2007, which virtually all legislators last session agreed was in need of reform, although many argued for different approaches.

Retaining SB 21 is the right decision if the Governor and legislature enact needed budget reforms this coming legislative session.  This piece explains why. Continue reading

UAA Athletics remain badly broken, and why addressing it is important …

Fiscal CliffLast year (2012), on the afternoon of July 27, I had a meeting at my request with UAA Chancellor Tom Case, primarily to discuss the recent hiring of then-UAA Women’s Basketball Coach Nate Altenhofen.

The University had announced the hiring of Altenhofen in late May, as the successor to highly successful Coach Tim Moser.

During the intervening two months I had come to develop deep concerns about Altenhofen based on his prior record and discussions with others Outside involved in women’s basketball.  As politely stated as I can, Altenhofen had developed a reputation of becoming involved with his players and staff in inappropriate ways, not something you want especially in a women’s basketball coach.  He had left his prior position as an assistant at Indiana University amidst rumors after only a year there, and had been out of college basketball entirely (i.e., no one would take a chance on him) in the year preceding his hiring by UAA. Continue reading