The Alaska Permanent Fund board will meet next week for overviews of three pieces of legislation aimed at closing the state’s budget gap that would also affect how the fund’s earnings are spent.

Nathaniel Herz
Alaska House Republicans are proposing to shut down all of their legislative business that doesn’t address the state’s massive budget deficit, with one lawmaker saying the problem requires “laser focus.”Nathaniel Herz
The Democratic minorities in the Alaska House and Senate presented their Republican colleagues with a proposal Monday: Share some power with us, and we can fix the budget crisis together.Nathaniel Herz
Of 311 registered voters, 70 percent said they either strongly or mildly supported adding sexual orientation and gender identity to the list of protected classes for employment and housing in city law. Devin Kelly
A proposal from the landlords of the Legislature’s Anchorage office building says a purchase by the state could save millions of dollars, but a separate analysis by lawmakers’ nonpartisan support agency calls that “misleading."Nathaniel Herz
Gov. Walker’s proposal to change how the Permanent Fund dividend is paid as a way to help fix Alaska's massive budget deficit had few supporters Thursday when it faced public comment for the first time.Alex DeMarban
The Alaska Legislature cut its overall travel spending last year to $500,000 from $660,000 in 2014, while top officials in Gov. Bill Walker’s administration spent slightly more than their predecessors.Nathaniel Herz
A single Alaska state senator spent $39,900 on travel in 2015, including two trips overseas — a $7,000 increase from the previous year, even as the state faces an escalating budget crisis.Nathaniel Herz
Gov. Bill Walker announced Thursday that his education commissioner, Mike Hanley, would step down March 1, with Susan McCauley, the director of the education department’s largest division, taking over as interim commissioner.Nathaniel Herz
Gov. Bill Walker’s bill to reduce tax credits to the oil and gas industry, worth $500 million to the state primarily through reduced spending, underwent tough questioning during its first hearing in the House on Wednesday.Alex DeMarban