Anchorage voters may be polled on subsistence

Posted: Thursday, January 17, 2002

ANCHORAGE -- The subsistence issue may wind up on the ballot in April -- but only in Anchorage.

Assembly chairman Dick Traini on Tuesday proposed a measure that would put a subsistence question on the April municipal ballot. Voters would be asked: Should the Legislature put a subsistence constitutional amendment before voters in November and let Alaska voters decide the issue?

The vote would largely gauge public opinion and would not be binding on the Legislature, but a citywide vote would add to the debate and give Anchorage a unique voice on the matter, Traini said. "All we're talking about quite frankly is a public opinion poll that costs the city nothing to do," he said.

Traini said he doesn't have an opinion about subsistence yet, but the issue is "tearing the state apart."

The ordinance has six Assembly co-sponsors; it is scheduled for a public hearing and a possible vote Jan. 29.

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