High Court agrees: Ben Stevens couldn't break nonexistent law

April 18, 2009 

The Alaska Supreme Court has affirmed a lower court's ruling that handed former state Sen. Ben Stevens a victory in a dispute with the state's legislative watchdog.

Superior Court Judge Mark Rindner ruled last year that the Alaska Public Offices Commission erred when it fined Stevens $630 for failing to disclose more than $70,000 in deferred compensation he received as a director of Semco Energy, parent company of Anchorage natural gas utility Enstar.

Rindner wrote that the laws that would have compelled Stevens to report the income were not in place at the time.

The state appealed Rindner's decision to the Alaska Supreme Court.

But in a ruling Friday, the high court agreed that APOC may not impose a civil penalty against Stevens.

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