Statewide Alaska Hire Preference Eliminations Effective August 16
Administration eliminates 90% in-state hire requirement for many communities, trades
ANCHORAGE: Today the Parnell/Treadwell Administration ended statewide Alaska Hire requirements for public works contracts. Until today, the state sought to hire Alaskans for at least 90% of state jobs across Alaska.
“By ending statewide Alaska Hire requirements, the Parnell/Treadwell Administration is handing over Alaskans’ jobs to Outsiders,” said Mike Wenstrup, Chair of the Alaska Democratic Party.
The Parnell/Treadwell Administration eliminated statewide Alaska hire preferences through a Department of Labor and Workforce Development (DOLWD) memorandum which is effective today. The memo eliminates Alaska Hire preferences for all crafts and trades in communities including Anchorage, Fairbanks, Juneau, and other communities. In addition, the memo eliminates Alaska Hire preferences for some crafts and trades in numerous communities throughout the state.
Until today, DOLWD had statewide Alaska Hire preferences for boilermakers, bricklayers, carpenters, cement masons, culinary workers, electricians, engineers and architects, equipment operators, foremen and supervisors, insulation workers, ironworkers, laborers, mechanics, millwrights, painters, pile drivers, plumbers & pipefitters, roofers, sheet metal workers, surveyors, truck drivers, tug boat operators, and welders. As of today, none of these trades have Alaska Hire preferences in Anchorage, Fairbanks, Juneau, and some other smaller communities. Many rural communities have much more limited Alaska Hire preferences; for example, only painters still have an Alaska Hire preference in the Aleutians West Borough, while all other trade jobs may be taken by Outsiders.
Alaska Hire preferences are governed by AS 36.10.150, which establishes criteria under which the state may establish a “zone of underemployment” and promote Alaska Hire. Those criteria include Outside residents taking jobs that could be performed by Alaskans. In the past, DOLWD has treated the entire state as a “zone of underemployment” and maintained Alaska Hire provisions for the aforementioned crafts and trades. Today’s determination is a departure from the past practice of promoting Alaska Hire statewide for the range of crafts and trades. Due to today’s memo, Alaskans will no longer be at the front of the line to apply for public works jobs.