The stage is set for the Anchorage Assembly to make a push on masking, which sets the stage for a major showdown with hands-off Mayor Dave Bronson, which all has some other interesting twists.
“We’re on top of this. We’ve always been on top of this,” said Gov. Mike Dunleavy as he downplayed the severity of the pandemic, noting that more people have died from other non-covid causes.
The same turn also happened in the Senate where a slate of amendments aimed at poking holes in vaccine requirements initially sunk the bill before it was revived with the hope that the House could salvage it. It turns out those hopes were misplaced.
And he’s also blaming the hospitals for being overworked.
In his veto, the governor’s administration claimed that the gap could be made up with federal funds and then in an editorial later claimed that no public health nurses would be laid off due to the vetoes. What he didn’t mention was agency has extreme staffing problems with as much as a 30% vacancy rate when the pandemic started, according to the budget documents.
We were always going to need to find the line of acceptable covid-19 cases and deaths, and it seems like that line is being drawn right around “There’s a widely available vaccine that will keep you out of the hospital.”
Under the change, the $75-per-dependant aid, which was approved by the Legislature last year, would drop to $24 on Sept. 6 at the same time the federal increase expires.
The state needs some form of the legislation in place before the end of the month or else it will lose out on roughly $8 million in boosted federal support for the state’s food stamp program.
The $250 fine is the penalty prescribed for the first offense of not wearing a mask in the capitol building and is, to the best of our knowledge, the first time that such a fine has been levied in the building despite Reinbold’s repeated refusal to follow the masking rules.
The long-awaited rollout of the Senate Finance Committee’s version of legislation extending the state’s covid-19 disaster declaration didn’t feature any talk about case rates, hospital…