Peltola picks up House Natural Resources Committee assignment

Mary Peltola, U.S. Captiol, U.S. House, representative-elect

Alaska’s U.S. Rep. Mary Peltola was assigned to the House Natural Resources Committee on Tuesday.

Peltola’s predecessor, Republican Rep. Don Young, once chaired the committee and was assigned to Natural Resources when he died in March.

The House Committee on Natural Resources is an official congressional cohort that advances legislation and oversees issues across a wide range of policy areas, including public lands, conservation and Native affairs. The committee’s jurisdiction also includes fisheries, a key policy interest of Peltola’s. Peltola is awaiting her subcommittee assignments.

Peltola requested a seat on the Natural Resources Committee and said in a statement that the committee “is where much of the legislation that is most important to Alaskans is advanced.”

[Mary Peltola sworn in as Alaska’s sole member of the U.S. House]

[Photos: Ceremony and celebration as Mary Peltola becomes Alaska’s U.S. House member]

A Democrat, Peltola became the first Alaska Native member of Congress after she was sworn in Tuesday. To reach the House, she defeated former Gov. Sarah Palin and businessman Nick Begich III in an August special election to replace Young. She faces a rematch in November against Palin and Begich in her bid to hold on to Alaska’s lone seat in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Before representing Alaska in the U.S. House, Peltola spent a decade serving in the state House representing the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta until 2009. Peltola then worked as director of the Kuskokwim River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission.

Peltola is scheduled to spend nine more days in Congress while the House is in session before the November general election. A Natural Resources Committee meeting is scheduled for Thursday.

Riley Rogerson

Riley Rogerson is a reporter for the Anchorage Daily News based in Washington, D.C., and is a fellow with Report for America. Contact her at rrogerson@adn.com.