Lawmakers look for ways to cut escalating prison costs

ANCHORAGE — Alaska lawmakers are looking for ways to cut prison costs.

They say lowering Alaska’s high rate of repeat offenders could be one way to cut prison costs. And, they say, it could mean a better life out of jail for those who likely would be headed back to prison.

The Anchorage Daily News reported Tuesday that House and Senate panels that oversee the state corrections budget hosted a daylong “Smart Justice Summit” in Anchorage on Monday. Lawmakers want to learn how other states are dealing with escalating prison costs and what might work in Alaska.

This year’s operating budget for the state Department of Corrections is more than $288 million, up more than $110 million from what was being spent 10 years ago.

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Mon, 02/27/2017 - 16:26

Alaska Senate leader: Passing a Permanent Fund bill critical

JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — The majority leader of the Alaska Senate says he will consider this session a success if lawmakers pass the state operating and infrastructure budgets and a bill that allows for structured draws from Alaska’s oil-wealth fund.

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Mon, 02/27/2017 - 10:06

Fairbanks man accused of setting occupied vehicle on fire

FAIRBANKS — Alaska State Troopers say they have arrested a Fairbanks man suspected of setting a vehicle on fire while people were inside the car.

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Mon, 02/27/2017 - 16:24

Two Alaska highways reopen after weekend snow closures

Two northern Alaska highways closed by heavy snowfall reopened Monday.

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Mon, 02/27/2017 - 10:02

Biologists begin moose count pilot study in Anchorage

ACNHORAGE — Alaska wildlife officials have begun a study to learn more about Anchorage’s urban moose population and the most efficient way to count the animals in the metropolitan area.

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