Donald Young

Donald Young


Congressman Young Shares Message with Alaskans Prior to President’s Visit


Dear Friends,

In less than a week, President Obama and a massive team of White House officials will touch down at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson (JBER) for their first official visit to Alaska and the U.S. Arctic. With the rumor mill still churning, the only official word so far are stops in Anchorage, Seward, Dillingham and Kotzebue to discuss what the President has described as the greatest threat to national security – climate change. Some have called the visit historic – a moment to be celebrated and embraced – I, however, am far less optimistic, especially given the President’s recent track record in Alaska.

Air Force One and President Obama making a brief refueling stop at Elmendorf Air Force Base in 2009.

Over the past six-and-a-half-years, President Obama and his Administration have aggressively pushed to make good on a 2008 campaign promise to “fundamentally change the United States of America.” Sadly, that attitude and mission has made a complete mockery out of the principals of federalism and the 10th Amendment. Their efforts continue to ignore states like Alaska that rely on our lands, waters and abundant natural resources to provide for our communities and local economies.

This Administration’s aggressive top-down agenda has and continues to restrict economic growth and damage the ability for our people to provide for themselves. Their onslaught of federal rules and regulations – never passed by Congress or subject to legitimate public input by local communities – have managed to lock away millions of acres of public lands, halt responsible resource development and production on land and offshore, and taken Alaskan and American jobs off the table at a time when we need them most. There’s no question, the long term impacts of these decisions will have a devastating effect on our state. So, to say I’m skeptical of the President’s intentions is an understatement.

President Obama detailing his visit to Alaska to discuss the issues of climate change.

Since the President announced his travels to Alaska last month, my message has been clear:  this visit must not be used as a platform to pander to the nation’s most extreme interests groups, but as an opportunity to see the many challenges and hurdles Alaskans face each and every day. With more than 80% of our communities off the road system, we face some of the most basic and fundamental obstacles: high energy and food costs, extreme poverty, drug and alcohol abuse, limited access to basic goods and services like medical care, internet, and even running water. At a time when much of the nation has the luxury to sit back and discuss our problems, many Alaskans are living them. By using our state as a poster child for a reckless environmental agenda, the President fails to recognize the harsh realities facing numerous Alaskans.

Congressman Young and the House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Energy & Mineral Resources recently held a hearing to discuss the future of Arctic offshore energy development and recent regulatory decisions by the Obama Administration to that would significantly harm development in the region.

As the only member of Congress from above the Arctic Circle, I have consistently fought for the real world needs of Alaska and the Arctic. With the help of the Congressional delegation, I have worked for new infrastructure and development projects in the region, including responsible resource extraction, deep water ports, navigational aids, and mapping of the sea floor. Through the creation of the Congressional Arctic Working Group and the Senate Arctic Caucus, we have made serious efforts to bring attention to the political realities of the region, particularly important as Russia expands its military footprint by reopening Soviet-era military bases and positioning four new combat brigades above the Arctic Circle. Even with the cynicism I share towards the President’s travel, I recently wrote the White House to encourage vocal support for a broad range of options to fund, develop and construct new icebreaker vessels – something we desperately need.

With the U.S. Icebreaker fleet dwindling (2 active vessels), Russia has amassed a fleet of more than two dozen.

 With the eyes of world upon us as the United States begins its two-year chairmanship of the Arctic Council, we must continue to push this Administration to lead on a wide range of Arctic issues and not simply the issues of climate change. Ultimately, this conversation must recognize the needs of people and include efforts to responsibly manage and develop our God given resources. Alaskans deserve an all of the above approach that supports traditional and alternative energy sources, not a systematic veto on specific industries and economic opportunity.

As Alaskans prepare for the President’s visit, we must do our best to remind him that we seek policies that empower our people and state, not the federal government. We are not just a fancy photo on a postcard or a green screen backdrop for the anti-resource development agenda; we are a unique and diverse people that rely upon our lands and our resources to survive. If this visit is simply a platform for the “we know best” environmental agenda, I suggest the President save the manpower, taxpayer resources, and countless gallons of jet fuel, and give that stump speech from somewhere else.


Congressman for All Alaska Read More

Congressman Young, Senior House Leaders Encourage Presidential Support for Icebreaker Leasing


Anchorage, AKAlaska Congressman Don Young is spearheading efforts to raise much needed attention and awareness to the nation’s dwindling icebreaker fleet in preparation to President Barack Obama’s visit to Alaska and the U.S. Arctic.

In a letter sent this week to President Obama, Congressman Young and other senior members of the House Transportation and Infrastructure (T&I) Committee – Chairman Bill Shuster (R-PA) and Coast Guard Subcommittee Chairman Duncan Hunter (R-CA) – encouraged support for a broad range of options to fund, develop and construct new icebreaker vessels, including  a “bold and desperately needed initiative” to use multi-agency programs to fund the leasing of privately-constructed and privately-owned icebreakers.

“Mr. President, for more than a decade, those who have operational interests in the Arctic have discussed the need for an aggressive program for icebreaker construction,” the letter says. “Yet those discussions have evolved little and yielded nothing. It is time to change our collective thinking. We urge you to look at the broadest range of options for the design and implementation of a multi-agency program for acquiring the federal icebreaking services needed to carry out federal safety, security, and environmental stewardship missions in the Arctic– including the chartering of a fleet of privately-constructed, privately-operated icebreakers that can be paid for by several pertinent agencies. Your upcoming trip to the Arctic offers the opportunity to announce just this sort of bold and desperately needed initiative.”

As a senior member of the House T&I Committee and Co-Chair of the Congressional Arctic Working Group, Congressman Young has long worked to expand the conversation of Arctic infrastructure and development. The joint letter to President Obama sends an important message that as a nation we must step away from the singular mindset that the federal government must solely own, build and operate its icebreaker fleet.

“The use of non-exclusively federal options may soften the impact on the federal budget, improve the long-term impact on the taxpayer, allow for quicker availability of modern assets to carry out the growing federal presence in the Arctic,” the lawmakers write. “It would be a mistake to ignore the considerable contributions that can be made by the private section, if it makes economic and operational sense to do so…. It is important to examine whether the use of the private sector to construct comparable vessels, or to provide services in others ways, may lead to significant savings in time and costs.”

The letter builds upon legislation recently sponsored in the House by Congressman Young, H.R. 3214, the National Icebreaker Fund Act of 2015, to provide an alternative multi-agency, multi-branch funding process for building or leasing new icebreakers to support shipping, resource development, and scientific research in the Arctic.

 Click here for the full letter to President Obama.


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Congressman Young Shares Thoughts on President’s Video Highlighting Alaska Visit


Anchorage, AKAlaska Congressman Don Young today shared the following statement in response to President Obama’s video highlighting his upcoming trip to Alaska:

“Many Alaskans have expressed anxiety and worry about further land use designations or ocean preserves that would permanently lock away resources critical to our state and local economies, including fish, oil and gas, minerals, and timber. The resources within Alaska can be and should be managed and developed responsibly. It is my hope that the President will use his visit as an opportunity to learn about the many challenges we face and not as a platform to pander to extreme interest groups using Alaska as a poster child for their reckless agenda.”



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Alaska Delegation Seeks Answers on Reductions in U.S. Army Alaska Force Structure


WASHINGTON, D.C. – In a letter to Secretary of the Army John McHugh, Senators Lisa Murkowski and Dan Sullivan, and Congressman Don Young this week requested additional information and documentation relating to the Army’s recent decision to reduce Alaska force structure by 2,600 troops.

“In accordance with our Congressional responsibility to provide oversight, we request the documentation used by senior U.S. Army leadership to make this strategically short-sighted decision,” the delegation wrote. “In our view, the current threat environment and the location of those threats does not align with the U.S. Army’s decision to remove forces from Alaska.”

The Alaska congressional delegation reiterated its firm belief that a reduction in Alaska’s Army presence “would be a strategic blunder,” inconsistent with the diverse and complex national security threats in the Asia Pacific identified by senior defense officials.

“As a delegation, we share the concerns expressed by Generals Joe Dunford, Paul Selva, Mark Milley, and Robert Neller about Russia’s threat to U.S. national security,” the letter stated. “Unfortunately, we believe the U.S. Army failed to fully consider the importance of Alaska’s Army forces in countering Russian emergence as a leading threat, a fact stated by numerous senior Department of Defense leaders.”

Citing serious discrepancies in the methodology and modeling used in the U.S. Army’s Military Value Analysis (MVA) and the long-term strategic impacts of the decision, the Alaska delegation formally requested “all of the U.S. Army’s decision documents on these force structure decisions, including the entire MVA and the Total Army Analysis (TAA).”

“As you are aware, the 4-25 Airborne Bridge Combat Team (ABCT) can respond to most crisis areas in the Northern Hemisphere faster than anywhere else in the continental U.S.,” the letter says. “Additionally, we believe that Alaska is home to some of the world’s greatest, most abundant, topographically-challenging, and climate-diverse joint training areas.  However, it has come to our attention that Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson (JBER) scored in the bottom third of the U.S. Army’s Military Value Analysis (MVA).  Needless to say, this modeling perplexes us.”

In addition to requesting decision documents, the letter requests answers to an extensive list of questions to clarify the Army’s decision-making process and open the dialogue with senior Army officials on Alaska troops reductions.

Click here to view the letter. 


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Young Proposes More Equitable Solution for Wetlands Mitigation


Washington, D.C. – In an effort to create a more equitable and commonsense wetlands mitigation process, Alaska Congressman Don Young recently introduced legislation to expand compensatory mitigation options as they pertain to Clean Water Act (CWA) section 404 permitting on State, Indian, and Alaska Native owned wetlands.

“Locking away lands into perpetuity does not match up with the impacts of these projects. Ultimately, mitigation must better reflect the life of a project,” said Congressman Don Young. “I’ve heard from businesses, land owners, and countless other Alaskans that the current process – in a state with more wetlands than any other – has created major barriers for investment and development. These requirements are often perceived as nothing short of government extortion, all for trying to exercise our right to use our lands and resources. We drastically need additional oversight on this matter and new tools that create a more equitable and fair system.”

H.R. 3271, the Preservation Leasing of State or Indian Lands Act, creates a more balanced approach to land use restrictions and long term land management. Congressman Young’s legislation would establish “Preservation Leasing” as a mechanism available for fulfilling compensatory mitigation in accordance with the CWA 404 permit process.

In Alaska and across the country, many projects subject to 404 permits have a lifespan. At the end of the project lifespan, these permits require full rehabilitation and reclamation of these lands.  However, current regulations offer mitigation options that are neither equitable nor reflect the temporary use of these lands.

Currently, three mechanisms are available for completing compensatory mitigation, all of which lock away lands into perpetuity and often place undue burdens on permittees:

  • Mitigation Banks: Requires a permittee to pay an assessed value to a third party mitigation bank responsible for permanently preserving purchased wetlands.
  • In-lieu Fee Mitigation: Requires a permittee to pay an assessed value to a third party in-lieu free program responsible for finding wetlands to permanently preserve in the future.
  • Permittee-Responsible Mitigation: Requires a permittee to restore, mitigate, or permanently preserve existing wetlands located at or adjacent to the proposed project site.  Permittee-responsible mitigation can include placing private and public lands into a preservation easement, forever restricting unencumbered use.

H.R. 3271 would create a fourth option for compensatory mitigation that allows states, tribes, and Alaskan Natives to place selected portions of their land into a “preservation lease” status to mitigate permittee activities on or near their lands. The permittee would pay the landholder for the impact and holding of their lands throughout the term of the lease.  These lands would remain undisturbed and would be reserved for mitigation of the specific project. 

A Significant Difference

Once the lands impacted by the project have been rehabilitated in accordance with the plan in the 404 permit, and hydrological functions and fish and wildlife habitat have been restored, “preservation lease” lands would revert back to the landowner without restriction.

  • The permanency requirement that is in regulations for an easement would not apply.
  • There would be a term for a preservation lease.
  • Preservation leasing would add to the existing tools available for mitigation impacts to wetlands.



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21 Reasons the Iran Deal is a Bad Deal


The more we find out about the Iran nuclear deal, the worse it looks. Each new day Congress reviews this deal, we discover more information and more reasons why this deal is simply unacceptable:

1.      Though the deal was originally being negotiated to keep Iran from getting a nuclear weapon, in its final form the agreement would allow just that when it sunsets in 10-15 years.

2.      This deal will accelerate regional nuclear proliferation. Saudi leaders for instance have said that this deal is worse than the nuclear pact former President Bill Clinton made with North Korea.

3.      Israeli Prime Minster Benjamin Netanyahu said this deal will give Iran “hundreds of billions of dollars to fuel their terror and military regime.”

4.      Sanctions relief isn’t tied to Iran complying with the deal, meaning Iran getsmassive amounts of relief before they’ve demonstrated strict adherence.

5.      And the money can’t be taken back once Iran gets it.

6.      That relief can be used to expand Iran’s malign and destabilizing influence in the region that has exacerbated sectarian conflict.

7.      The money can also be used to further fund Iran’s terrorist proxies like Hamas, Hezbollah, Assad, and Houthis in Yemen.

8.      In fact, Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, said that Iran will not change its anti-American policy.

9.      To enforce the deal, world powers must first know if Iran violated the deal but that is an unclear process that can be delayed for weeks while Iran would be able to hide and obfuscate banned activities.

10.  Iran doesn’t have to come clean on its past nuclear activity, leaving world powers little ability to verify future illegal advances.

11.  Iran’s foreign minister interprets the deal very differently than the Obama Administration does.

12.  For example, he believes that the scale of foreign investments would effectively prevent the world from re-imposing sanctions on Iran, making the “snapback” provision of the deal effectively meaningless.

13.  He also said that Iran could deny inspectors access to nuclear and military sites under the deal.

14.  He also said that Iran would not be violating the deal if it broke the UN resolution prohibiting the purchase of conventional arms and missiles because the arms embargo is implicitly out of the scope of the nuclear agreement.

15.  Even if Iran adheres to the arms embargo, the embargo is lifted in 5 years, giving Iran access not only to conventional arms to further fuel terrorism and their drive for regional dominancy.

16.  In 8 years, the missile ban will be removed, allowing Iran to acquire missiles that could carry nuclear payloads.

17.  The Obama Administration pushed for the UN to vote on the deal in an attempt to jam Americans and their elected representatives before they’ve even had a chance to review the deal.

18.  Iran will be allowed to conduct advanced research and development that will pave the way for centrifuges that are modern and efficient. They will be able to enrich huge amounts of Uranium that will shorten their breakout time for a bomb.

19.  The deal also provides sanctions relief to Iranian military leader Qasem Soleimani, leader of the elite Quds force of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard, who is a designated terrorist who is responsible for the deaths of at least 500 U.S. troops in Iraq and Afghanistan.

20.  On top of that, the deal lifts sanctions on two Iranian atomic scientists who worked on Iran’s illegal nuclear program and a nuclear proliferator who has previously helped smuggle nuclear components.

21.  The murderous Syrian President Bashar al-Assad called this deal a “great victory” and congratulated Iran on their achievement.

Congress will continue its work reviewing this deal over the coming months. The people have a right to know exactly what the Obama Administration negotiated, and Congress won’t accept a deal that isn’t in our national security interest.


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House Works to Protect America’s Veterans


Washington, D.C. – In a combined effort to ensure the nation’s more than 21 million veterans receive the quality care they deserve, today the House passed two important pieces of legislation aimed at improving the Department responsible for their care. With the support of Alaska Congressman Don Young, the House today sent H.R. 1994, the VA Accountability Act of 2015, and H.R. 3236, the Surface Transportation and Veterans Health Care Choice Improvement Act, to the Senate for consideration.

“The respect and admiration this nation shares for our military is unquestionable, but we must maintain this support long after these men and women return home and take off the uniform,” said Congressman Don Young.  “We have a sacred commitment to our nation’s veterans and I will continue fighting to make sure our government upholds its end of the deal. By eliminating the VA’s own bureaucratic vulnerabilities, by fixing a major hole in the VA’s budget, by exempting our veterans from the President’s healthcare law, this Congress has made it clear that we will not stop until every veteran out there is treated with the respect and dignity they deserve.”

H.R. 3236, the Surface Transportation and Veterans Health Care Choice Improvement Act, is a two part bill that addresses a combined effort in the House to extend negotiations on a long term highway transportation bill, and further improve services and care for our nation’s veterans.

A major provision within H.R. 3236 would fill a budgetary gap in the VA that would have forced the shutdown of veteran healthcare services across the nation and compounded the shortfalls already facing Alaska veterans. H.R. 3236 would authorize the transfer of $3.4 billion from the Veterans Choice Program to be used for the VA care in the community programs, often used by rural Alaska veterans, and other hospital related services and care.

Additionally, H.R. 3236 incorporates the Hire More Heroes Act, commonsense, bipartisan legislation that would allow employers to exclude employees already receiving healthcare coverage under TRICARE or the VA from counting against the employer mandate.

H.R. 1994, widely supported by veterans' organizations across the nation, works to address the systemic failures at the Department of Veteran Affairs (VA) by ensuring all employees are held accountable for their actions. Since the wait-time manipulation scandal in Phoenix came to light, Congress has passed legislation to provide the authority to fire or demote Senior Executive employees. H.R. 1994 would expand that authority to include all VA employees.

The bill contains several provisions, including:

  • Whistleblower protections;
  • A cap on total bonuses to VA employees at $360 million each year through 2024;
  • Reduced retirement annuities for VA Senior Executive employees convicted of a felony;
  • A provision limiting the VA from placing employees under investigation for misconduct on administrative (paid) leave for more than 14 days in a year.


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House Coast Guard Subcommittee Addresses Foreign Oil Spills and Ice Breakers


Washington, D.C. – Two bills cosponsored by Alaska Congressman Don Young were considered in the House Transportation and Infrastructure Coast Guard Subcommittee today – one to update the Oil Pollution Act (OPA) of 1990 as it relates to foreign spills, another to establish a funding process for the alteration, renovation, lease or charter of a U.S. built icebreaker.

Foreign Spill Protection Act of 2015:

H.R. 1684, the Foreign Spill Protection Act of 2015, would ensure that the responsible party, regardless of origin, pays for ALL American cleanup costs associated with an oil spill.  Under current law, spills occurring in U.S. waters must be paid for in full by the responsible party. However, foreign oil spills reaching U.S. waters are paid for through the Oil Liability Trust Fund, which covers $150 million for clean up and up to $850 million for claims.

“Following the Exxon Valdez oil spill, which revealed the lack of federal funding available at the time to respond to oil spills, Congress passed the Oil Protection Act to develop the laws currently governing damage payments, oil spill prevention and response,” said Congressman Don Young. “I was proud to serve a key role in advancing that legislation and stand ready to push commonsense reforms to hold foreign entities accountable for their actions in our waters. This legislation is increasingly important as maritime activity near Alaska increases. For example, if a vessel transporting oil in Russian waters suffers a spill, ocean currents may very well bring that oil into Alaska’s waters and shores. H.R. 1684 would force the responsible party to pay for the costs associated with clean up.”

Under this bill, operators responsible for a spill reaching U.S. waters would pay for all costs associated with cleanup. Those refusing, or denying guilt, would face significant civil penalties imposed by the U.S. Attorney General in the appropriate district court.

National Icebreaker Fund Act of 2015:

The National Icebreaker Fund Act of 2015 would establish an alternative funding process for building a new icebreaker, renovating an existing icebreaker, or leasing private icebreakers.  The National Icebreaker Fund would be eligible for funds from a variety of sources, including Congressional appropriations, receipts from selling an ice breaker, fund transfers from other agencies, and non-federal contributions.

“During my time in Congress and on the House Transportation of Infrastructure Committee, I have seen firsthand the hurdles we face in trying to expand our icebreaker fleet,” said Congressman Don Young. “Every year, our ice breaking needs grow, as does the cost to build a new icebreaker or renovate an existing one. Under this proposal, the National Icebreaker Fund would allow the Coast Guard to use funds to renovate its existing polar icebreakers, acquire a new one, or lease such a vessel from a private owner. The benefits of this approach would be that Congress could build the Fund up over years rather than trying to appropriate the significant overall costs of a new icebreaker in a single year.” 

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Bill to Rein in Excessive Government Regulation Passes House


Washington, D.C. – In a continued effort to hold the Executive Branch accountable and provide relief for the American people, today the House passed H.R. 427, the Regulations from the Executive In Needs of Scrutiny (REINS) Act, to require congressional approval of all major rules resulting in an annual effect on the economy of $100 million or more, a major increase in costs of prices, or significant adverse effects on competition and employment.

“Our current system allows unelected bureaucrats to pass wide sweeping regulatory law that has never been voted on in Congress,” said Congressman Don Young, an original cosponsor of the legislation. “Presidential appointees and Administration officials, as we have seen through the explosion of federal agency regulations, are not accountable to the American people. They do whatever the President tells them to do, often resulting in needless roadblocks and red tape for American families and small businesses.  This system only serves the few at the expense of the taxpayer. These burdens are stifling growth and burying America’s opportunities to create jobs.”

The REINS Act would require that Congress pass a joint resolution of approval for any major rule before such rule can take effect. This resolution must be passed within 70 days legislative days of a major rule being proposed or it will not go into effect. However, the REINS Act does allow for certain common sense exceptions.

  • A major rule could go into effect for 90 days, without such approval, if the President determines such rule is necessary because of imminent threat to health or public safety.
  • Other common sense exceptions include major rules involving the enforcement of criminal laws or the implementation of trade agreements.

Federal regulations are too often ill-considered, needlessly costly, or simply unnecessary, and regulators fail to analyze both the costs and benefits of most new major rules. 

In 2014, federal regulations imposed an estimated $1.88 trillion burden, equaling 11.5% of Gross Domestic Product or roughly $14,976 per U.S. household. During the first six years of the Obama Administration, federal regulators added an average of 81 new major regulations per year – nearly 500 in total. At least 184 of these rules contained new federal prescriptions, with an annual cost of nearly $80 billion.



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House Passes Fisheries Legislation Aimed at Defeating and Deterring Pirate Fishing


Washington, D.C. – The House today passed bipartisan legislation aimed at deterring and eliminating Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated (IUU) fishing, also known as “pirate” fishing, a longstanding issue widely identified as a leading threat to sustainable fisheries worldwide.

Congressman Young on the passage of H.R. 774, the Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated (IUU) Fishing Enforcement Act of 2015 (click here to watch).

Alaska Congressman Don Young, an original cosponsor of the bill and longtime advocate for ocean conservation efforts, today offered the following statement upon passage of H.R. 774, the Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated (IUU) Fishing Enforcement Act of 2015:

“I think everyone can agree that pirate fishing should not and cannot be tolerated,” said Congressman Don Young. “These significant efforts will help defeat the growing number of criminals stealing our resources and harming our local economies. As a staunch support of our oceans and U.S. fishing industry, I’ve proudly worked to give our authorities the tools they need to fight back and eliminate these illegal vessels, in addition to ensuring the millions of pounds of illegally caught seafood and fish never reach the global markets.”

H.R. 774 significantly strengthens existing enforcement measures by increasing U.S. capacity for inspection, identification, and monitoring of illegal foreign vessels. The legislation would amend several international agreements to incorporate civil and criminal penalties against IUU violators, and broaden data sharing authority with foreign governments in order to identify and penalize nations not in compliance with fisheries management regulations.

H.R. 774 would also implement the Port States Measures Agreement, a provision which further works to prevent and deter IUU fishing by placing additional controls on foreign vessels seeking entry into U.S. ports, ultimately restricting their access to U.S. markets.

Passed today by voice vote, the legislation has garnered support from a broad coalition of stakeholders in the fishing and conservation community. H.R. 774 is the product of extensive negotiations between Republicans and Democrats in the House during the 113th and 114th Congress.


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Meeting with Sebastian Donoso, Special Advisor on Indigenous Affairs within the Government of Chile Read More


Meeting with Benjamin Tucker of the Yakima Nation Read More


Meeting with 33 Close-Up students from Chugiak High School, East High School, Stellar High School, South Anchorage High School and Yukon Koyukuk Scools Read More


Meeting with Jackie Johnson, Executive Director of the National Congress of American Indians Read More


Meeting with John Katz of the Alaska Governor's Office Read More


House Committee on Energy and Commerce hearing on "American Energy Initiative" with both Senators testifying Read More


Meeting with Haines Borough Mayor Jan Hill Read More


Meeting with Dalton Riser, Student Wasilla Read More


Meeting with Mallory Givens, UAA Student Read More


Meeting with Sheri Buretta, Ed Herndon and Trudi Komakhuk Read More

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House Coast Guard Subcommittee Addresses Foreign Oil Spills and Ice Breakers

2015-07-28 21:05:32

Rep. Young on Passage of Fisheries Legislation Aimed at Defeating and Deterring Pirate Fishing

2015-07-27 22:57:11

Congressman Young Shares Message in Celebration of Ted Stevens Day

2015-07-24 18:12:39

Young: "Remember, there are people who live in the Arctic Circle"

2015-07-16 00:22:38

Rep. Young Shares Statement in Response to Army Reductions at Fort Richardson and Wainwright

2015-07-08 23:10:11

Congressman Young: Administration ANWR Plan is a "Betrayal to the Alaskan People"

2015-07-07 22:05:19

Congressman Young on Interior Appropriations Amendment: "We Should Follow the Law"

2015-07-07 21:55:34

Rep. Young Amendment Restricts Funding for Implementing Administration’s ANWR Designation

2015-07-07 21:13:49

Congressman Young Shares a Father's Day Message with Alaskans on Summer Solstice

2015-06-21 15:21:00

Congressman Don Young Speaking in Favor of H.R. 1335, Bill to Reauthorize Magnuson-Stevens Act

2015-06-01 23:50:33

Rep. Young Sharing His Thoughts Following the Passage of H.R. 336, the Anchorage Land Transfer Act

2015-06-01 23:27:23

Congressman Young Speaking in Support of H.R. 336, the Anchorage Land Transfer Act

2015-06-01 23:25:04

Congressman Young Shares Memorial Day Message with Alaskans

2015-05-22 21:07:49

Congressman Young Shares Thoughts on MSA Reauthorization Prior to Committee Markup

2015-04-30 17:14:38

Congressman Young Shares Thoughts on U.S. Chairmanship of Arctic Council

2015-04-24 21:54:44

Congressman Young and the Last Frontier Honor Flight at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier

2015-04-24 19:48:42

Congressman Young Highlighting the Work of the 114th Congress on Its 100th Day

2015-04-16 22:07:58

Congressman Young Testifying Before the House Armed Services Committee on Priorities Within NDAA

2015-04-14 21:43:02

Heather Schloeman, Boys & Girls Club Kenai Peninsula, Discussing the Summer Meals Act of 2015

2015-03-26 20:23:03

Congressman Young Discussing House Passage of FY16 Budget Resolution

2015-03-25 23:41:06

Contact Information

2314 Rayburn HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Phone 202-225-5765
Fax 202-225-0425

Congressman Don Young was re-elected to the 113th Congress in 2012 to serve his 21st term as Alaska’s only Representative to the United States House of Representatives. First sworn in as a freshman to the 93rd Congress after winning a special election on March 6, 1973, Congressman Young is today the 1st ranking Republican member and the the 4th ranking overall member of the House of Representatives.

Congressman Young served as Chairman of the House Resources Committee from 1995 to 2001 and then as the Chairman of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee from 2001-2007. In the 110th Congress, Representative Young returned to the helm of the Resources Committee to lead his fellow Republicans as the Ranking Member. In the 112th Congress, he was chosen to serve as the Chairman for the Subcommittee on Alaska Native and Indian Affairs.  Rep. Young currently serves as a senior Republican on the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee and House Natural Resources Committee.

Congressman Young calls Fort Yukon, Alaska home; a remote village of approximately 700 people located 7 miles above the Arctic Circle in Alaska’s central interior region. Born on June 9, 1933 in Meridian, California, he earned his associate degree at Yuba Junior College in 1952, and his bachelor’s degree in teaching at Chico State College in 1958. Between earning these degrees, he served in the US Army’s 41st Tank Battalion from 1955 to 1957.

When he first moved to Alaska, Congressman Young made a living in construction and tried his hand at commercial fishing, trapping, and in the search for gold. In Fort Yukon he taught in a 25-student, 5th grade elementary class in the Bureau of Indian Affairs school. Constructed of logs, the school had a wood stove that kept his Alaska Native students warm in the sub-freezing, arctic winter. With the annual spring break-up of the river ice, he captained his own tug and barge operation to deliver products and supplies to villages along the Yukon River. Even today, he remains the only licensed mariner in Congress.

It was in Fort Yukon that Rep. Young met and married a young bookkeeper named Lu. Lu was always at the Congressman’s side and supported him throughout his public service career. Lu and Don were married for 46 years, they were blessed with and raised two daughters, Joni and Dawn, and 14 grandchildren. Mrs. Young passed away on August 2, 2009.

Congressman Young first entered public service in 1964 when he was elected Mayor of Fort Yukon. Two years later, Alaskan voters elected him to the State Legislature in Juneau where he served in the State House from 1966 to 1970, and later in the State Senate from 1970 to 1973. Just hours after being sworn in to United States House of Representatives in 1973, he found himself leading the historic battle for approval of the Trans-Alaskan Pipeline. Often citing this as the single most important achievement in his career, Congressman Young stated, “Next to statehood itself, the most historical legislation passed that affected every Alaskan then, now, and in the future, was the passage of the pipeline legislation.”

That same year, his colleagues honored him as the “Freshman Congressman of the Year.” He went on to gain a key appointment on the then Merchant Marine and Fisheries Committee where he pushed through the 200-mile fishing limit critical to Alaska’s fishing industry. He fought against federal control of lands and resources to which Alaskans are rightfully entitled – a battle he continues today with the same vigor. In 1997, he passed by a 419-1 vote, the National Wildlife Improvement Act, which sets guidelines for the nation’s 500-plus wildlife refuges.

Congressman Young proudly serves as the “Congressman for All Alaska” and loves his role as the only Alaskan Representative in Congress. Renewed by the challenges and goals of the 111th Congress and his committee positions, Congressman Young will continue to champion legislation and funding for programs benefiting Alaska and the nation. His vision remains the same – to provide citizens with the opportunity for a better life not just for today, but also for tomorrow and the future.

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