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Alaska News

No DMVs, business licenses, museums or routine road maintenance if Alaska’s government shuts down July 1

Julia Cox places her Permanent Fund Dividend application in a secure drop box inside the Anchorage PFD office on Tuesday, March 30, 2021. PFD offices would be closed during a government shutdown, the state said late Wednesday. (Bill Roth / ADN)

Alaskans won’t be able to get a student loan, business license, driver’s license or visit a public shooting range or museum if the state’s government shuts down July 1.

Late Wednesday, the state of Alaska published a list showing what services will partially or wholly stop during a government shutdown.

According to the list, ferries will continue to run, Medicaid will still pay for health care, and both prisons and Pioneer Homes will stay open.

The new list isn’t completely clear: It says sport and commercial fisheries will be open only to the extent necessary “to maintain constitutional duties.” It doesn’t explain beyond that. The list also doesn’t mention what happens to the state court system or the University of Alaska.

Alaska legislators began a special session of the Alaska Legislature on Wednesday in an attempt to avert a shutdown caused by the failure to finalize a budget for the coming fiscal year. A shutdown remains possible.

The list runs for 10 pages. Here are the highlights:

What’s open

Ferries

Airports

• Prisons

• Medicaid payments

• The Alaska Psychiatric Institute

• Pioneer Homes

• Unemployment Insurance

• Emergency management and the Alaska Volcano Observatory

• State troopers and criminal prosecutors

• Alaska Permanent Fund Corp. investment staff

What’s closed

• Routine road maintenance

• The Permanent Fund Dividend Division

• DMV branches and vital statistics offices (birth, death and marriage certificates)

• State museums and archives

• Public shooting ranges

• Teacher certification

• Prison chaplain programs

• Tourism and seafood marketing

• Business licenses, alcohol licenses, and marijuana licenses (except for enforcement, suspension and revocation)

• The Alaska Public Offices Commission, which regulates political campaigns

• Air and water quality permits

• The senior benefits program

• Veterans’ services

What’s uncertain or partially closed

• Commercial and sport fisheries

• Utility regulation and the regulation of oil and gas drilling

• K-12 student lunch programs

• Drinking water monitoring and air quality advisories

• The Alaska Division of Elections

• The governor’s office and lieutenant governor’s office

• Public health laboratories

• Child care benefits and the Women, Infants, and Children program

• Occupational safety and health inspections

• State parks management

• Dam safety inspections

• The state crime lab

• The state tax division

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