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Alaska State House Majority Organizes for 28th Legislature

Chenault returns as Speaker, leadership & committee chairs announced

Thursday, November 8, 2012, Girdwood, Alaska – The Alaska House Majority Caucus has organized for the 28th Alaska Legislature. Representative Mike Chenault, R-Nikiski, returns for a third term as House Speaker. Representative Lance Pruitt, R-Anchorage is the new Majority Leader, and Representative Craig Johnson, R-Anchorage, returns as Rules Chair. Representatives Bill Stoltze, R-Mat-Su/Chugiak, & Alan Austerman, R-Kodiak, are the co-chairs of the House Finance Committee.

“I am grateful for the opportunity to return as Speaker,” Chenault said. “The gavel comes with a tremendous amount of responsibility, and I am confident we will continue to respect and uphold the tradition and powers of the Speaker’s Office and Alaska State House.”

“We welcome five new members to caucus, and are eager to continue relationship building and educating each other prior to the start of session,” Pruitt said. “We will continue focusing on key issues – oil tax reform, affordable energy, quality education, public safety, and responsible investments – and are looking forward to working with the new Senate leadership and Governor to finally push Alaska forward.”

“I’m proud to be back as Rules Chair. It’s a very strong caucus and I’m ready to help get to work and move Alaska forward,” Johnson said.

“We came together rather well, and I am glad to come back for Southeast Alaska to be a part of the House leadership team,” Wilson said.

“This organization represents all regions of Alaska, in a bipartisan spirit, with a strong focus on resource development, relevant and accountable education, and a commitment to work for a stronger economy,” Stoltze said.

“I am very pleased that we’ve been able to form a strong bipartisan Majority that will serve the people of Alaska well,” Austerman said. “I am appreciative of the confidence the caucus has placed in me as co-chair for the operational budget of the State of Alaska. I’m looking forward to continuing the efforts of the past co-chairs in structuring a sustainable budget into the future.”

The Legislature convenes Jan. 15, 2013 in Juneau.

Finance Committee members are:

Rep. Stoltze & Rep. Austerman, Co-Chairs

Rep. Mark Neuman, R-Big Lake

Rep. Bryce Edgmon, D-Dillingham

Rep. Cathy Muñoz, R-Juneau

Rep. Tammie Wilson, R-North Pole

Rep. Mia Costello, R-Anchorage

Rep. Steve Thompson, R-Fairbanks

Committee Chairs

Judiciary – Rep. Wes Keller, R-Wasilla

Resources – Reps. Eric Feige, R-Chickaloon & Rep. Dan Saddler, R-JBER/Eagle River

State Affairs – Rep. Bob Lynn, R-Anchorage

Health & Social Services – Rep. Pete Higgins, R-Fairbanks

Labor & Commerce – Rep. Kurt Olson, R-Soldotna/Kenai

Transportation – Rep. Peggy Wilson, R-Wrangell

Education – Rep. Lynn Gattis, R-Wasilla

Community & Regional Affairs – Rep. Ben Nageak, D-Barrow & Rep. Gabrielle LeDoux, R-Anchorage

Special & Joint Committee Chairmanships

Economic Development, Trade & Tourism – Rep. Shelley Hughes, R-Palmer

Energy – Rep. Charisse Millett, R-Anchorage & Rep. Doug Isaacson, R-North Pole

Fisheries – Rep. Paul Seaton, R-Homer

Military & Veterans Affairs – Rep. Neal Foster, D-Nome & Rep. LeDoux

Legislative Council – Rep. Mike Hawker, R-Anchorage

Regulation Review – Rep. Lora Reinbold, R-Eagle River

Legislative Budget & Audit – Rep. Hawker, Vice-Chair

Joint Armed Services – Rep. Saddler, House Co-Chair

Select Committee on Legislative Ethics – Rep. Millett, House Chair

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