JUNEAU - Gov. Sean Parnell's pick for the lieutenant governor successor has cleared his first hurdle toward confirmation.
Both the state House and Senate must confirm Larry Hartig. The House State Affairs Committee on Monday waived him through to the full House.
Hartig currently serves as Alaska's commissioner of environmental conservation, and would be second in line to the governor's office, behind Lt. Gov. Craig Campbell.
Parnell nominated Hartig as the fallback lieutenant governor last summer, shortly after he inherited the governor's job from Sarah Palin. Palin caused a stir when she named Campbell as lieutenant governor upon her resignation, even though lawmakers had earlier approved Corrections Commissioner Joe Schmidt as the designee. Campbell later won their approval.