Washington, DC –The bipartisan Congressional Cannabis Caucus – co-chaired by Reps. Don Young (AK-At Large), Earl Blumenauer (OR-03), Dana Rohrabacher (CA-48), Jared Polis (CO-02) – today released the following statement in response to White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer’s suggestion that the Trump administration will step up enforcement of federal laws against recreational marijuana:
“Today’s statement by White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer regarding marijuana policy reaffirms the need for the Congressional Cannabis Caucus,” Cannabis Caucus Co-Chairs stated. “Last November, eight more states passed measures to increase access to state-legal cannabis, and today more than 300 million Americans live in states with access to adult-use marijuana or some form medical cannabis. Among them are four additional states that have fully legalized the adult-use of marijuana. We hope today’s comments do not reflect the views of the President and his administration. As co-chairs of the Congressional Cannabis Caucus, we stand ready to educate this administration on the need for more sensible marijuana policies and share the many experiences states have had with the legalization of cannabis. Together, we will continue to work in a bipartisan manner to reform our failed marijuana policies and provide a voice for Americans who have overwhelmingly voted for a more sensible drug policy.”
Co-Chairs Launch Cannabis Caucus, Discuss Future of Marijuana Policy in the United States (Click here to watch).
Last week, Reps. Don Young (AK-At Large), Earl Blumenauer (OR-03), Dana Rohrabacher (CA-48), Jared Polis (CO-02) announced the formation of the bipartisan Congressional Cannabis Caucus. The Caucus will provide a forum for members of the U.S. House of Representatives to discuss, learn, and work together to establish a better and more rational approach to federal cannabis policy. Click here for more information.
Washington, DC – Representatives Don Young (AK-At Large), Earl Blumenauer (OR-03), Dana Rohrabacher (CA-48), and Jared Polis (CO-02) today at the U.S. Capitol launched the Congressional Cannabis Caucus – the first of its kind.
The bipartisan Caucus will provide a forum for members of the U.S. House of Representatives to discuss, learn, and work together to establish a better and more rational approach to federal cannabis policy. Co-Chairs Young, Blumenauer, Rohrabacher, and Polis today sent a letter inviting all members of the U.S. House to join the Caucus.
Co-Chairs Launch Cannabis Caucus, Discuss Future of Marijuana Policy in the United States (Click here to watch).
“In 2014, the people of Alaska voted to legalize marijuana. While I do not personally advocate for the use of marijuana, I strongly believe in this issue as a matter of states' rights. It is my responsibility to represent the people of Alaska’s views in Congress, to speak on their behalf, and try to solve the problems they are facing,” said Rep. Don Young. “Because of the conflicts between Federal and State law, marijuana-related issues are no longer theoretical—they are real, and they are affecting real people in Alaska and across the country. The issues I am most focused on are banking, the intersection of legal marijuana and our second amendment rights, and the effect on tribal issues. Alaskan businesses, like those in Washington, in Colorado, and elsewhere, are operating dangerously because they are not allowed to access banks for their revenue. We need to address this. I look forward to working with the Congressional Cannabis Caucus to educate my colleagues in the House on the issues we are facing in Alaska, and hopefully to also develop solutions to these problems.”
“The prohibition of cannabis has been a failure, and Americans across our nation are demanding a more sensible approach,” said Rep. Earl Blumenauer. “Following the November election, federal laws are now out of step with 44 states. The time is now to come together and bring the federal government in line with the will of the American people.”
“The federal government’s decades-long approach to marijuana is a colossal, cruel joke, and most Americans know it. Not only have incalculable amounts of taxpayers’ dollars been wasted, but countless lives have been unnecessarily disrupted and even ruined by misguided law enforcement. With big-government mobilizations now widely discredited, it is time to return to the basic principles of federalism, in which the national government allows the states to determine, with their voters’ guidance, the right course to pursue. The states need friends in Congress, and the Cannabis Caucus is here to help,” said Rep. Dana Rohrabacher.
“The results are in. A majority of Americans live in a state that has some form of legal access to cannabis, and the federal prohibition of marijuana has been a complete and utter failure,” said Rep. Jared Polis. “At a time when partisanship is at an all-time high, I’m glad that both Democrats and Republicans can come together and work to reform marijuana laws to align with the voice of the American people. I look forward to getting to work with this Caucus, and to regulate marijuana more like alcohol.”
Increasingly, federal cannabis laws are out of touch with American voters. Ninety-five percent of Americans now live in states or territories that permit, to varying degrees, legal access to medical marijuana and/or cannabis derivatives, with even more states considering expanded access this year. Additionally, a fifth of all Americans now live in a state with legal access to the adult use of marijuana. It's time for Congress to catch up and begin conducting meaningful discussions on the future of marijuana policy in the United States. The Congressional Cannabis Caucus is a step in the right direction.
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WASHINGTON, D.C. –Today, the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.J. Res. 69, a joint resolution of disapproval under the Congressional Review Act sponsored by Alaska Congressman Don Young, to overturn a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) rule on “Non-Subsistence Take of Wildlife, and Public Participation and Closure Procedures, on National Wildlife Refuges in Alaska.” The resolution of disapproval passed 225 to 193.
Congressman Young defending House passage of H.J. Res. 69 on the House floor (click here to watch)
“From the beginning, I said I would do everything in my power to overturn this illegal jurisdictional power grab by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Today, we’re one step closer to delivering on that commitment and eliminating a wrongful seizure of Alaska’s fish and wildlife management authority,” House Natural Resources Chairman Emeritus Don Young said after House passage of H.J. Res. 69. “I’m thankful to all those that played a role in moving this important resolution of disapproval, including the countless state and local stakeholders that worked with me to fight a very serious and alarming overreach by the previous administration. I look forward to working with Senators Sullivan and Murkowski to ensure H.J. Res. 69 receives swift consideration in the Senate.”
House Natural Resources Chairman Rob Bishop speaking in favor of H.J. Res. 69 on the House floor (click here to watch).
“This rule violates three Congressionally passed statutes that have precedence on this particular issue. Here’s the bottom line: Alaska Department of Fish and Wildlife know exactly what they are doing. They know the area. They know the animals. This rule only stops the fish and wildlife system of Alaska from simply doing their job as they know how to do it,” House Natural Resources Chairman Rob Bishop (R-UT) said during floor debate. “There are some people who might think this only deals with Alaska. Technically it does, but the problem is if this happens to Alaska this could also happen in any one of the lower 48 states. We’re simply one lawsuit away.”
“The Federal Lands subcommittee will spend this Congress working on legislation to restore our public lands from the policy of benign neglect that has plagued our public lands to the point that we are losing our forests in the west and that has strained the relationships between our communities and our federal agencies. The resolution sponsored by Congressman Young is an excellent start,” House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Federal Lands Chairman Tom McClintock (R-CA) said.
On August, 5, 2016, FWS issued its final rule, which seizes authority away from the State of Alaska to manage fish and wildlife for both recreational and subsistence uses on federal lands in Alaska.
Congressman Young has work tirelessly in the U.S. House of Representatives to overturn the FWS a rule, efforts he’s called “an important step to enforcing the law and restoring Alaska’s federally protected ability to manage fish and game.”
The Congressional Review Act is a powerful tool being deployed by Congress to overturn politically motivated rules finalized in the waning days and months of the Obama administration. With the passage H.J. Res 69 in the House and Senate and the signature of the president, Young’s resolution would ensure that the final FWS rule would have no force or effect, and that no substantially similar rule can be issued in the future without a subsequent authorization from Congress.
Washington, D.C. – Alaska Congressman Don Young is working double-time this week to overturn a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) final rule that would seize authority away from the State of Alaska to manage fish and wildlife on federal wildlife refuges in Alaska – a clear violation of federal law.
Young’s resolution of disapproval, H.J. Res. 69 – under consideration in the U.S. House Representatives this week – would nullify an August 5, 2016 FWS rule (81 Fed. Reg 52247) through the use of the Congressional Review Act, a powerful tool being deployed by Congress to overturn politically motivated rules finalized in the waning days and months of the Obama administration.
Alaska Congressman Don Young testified yesterday before the House Rules Committee on behalf of H.J. Res. 69, calling it an important step to enforcing the law and restoring Alaska’s federally protected ability to manage fish and game.
Congressman Young testifying on behalf of H.J. Res. 69 during House Rules Committee hearing ( click here to watch).
“We have to recognize this is not about the little polar bears, the little grizzly bears or wolves on television, this is about the state's right to manage – not allowing the federal government to do so. I urge you to think about this…,” said Congressman Don Young. “We want to be able to take and manage our fish and game for the sustainable yield – so that our fish and game will be there forever… What they’re proposing, with their actions to take away our control, would preclude us from maintaining the species that are necessary in the State of Alaska – for the State. I urge you to [move this legislation forward], review this program, bring it to a vote, and get the federal government off states’ backs. The states have a right, under the law, especially the state of Alaska, to manage. To have an agency come in and say, ‘no you don’t,’ is just dead wrong.”
The hearing was not without some much expected fanfare, which included vocal opposition by those characterizing H.J. Res. 69 as “the Puppy Killing Act.” Working to combat an extreme and false narrative, Young made his case very clear – a position of states’ rights clearly protected in both the Alaska Statehood Act and the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act (ANILCA), and enforcing the laws enacted by Congress.
Congressman Young responding to vocal opposition to H.J. Res. 69 (click here to watch).
“With the propaganda that you’re rehearsing here – putting forth to this Committee – is full, full, full bull poop…,” said Congressman Young. “This has been an overreach and the beginning of overreach on all federal lands. Under the Statehood Act, we have the authority by law, under ANILCA. We have the authority by law that the State is to manage. What this last administration did, they broke the law. We will win this in court if we have to – we’re sure of that, but I don’t want to do that. I want to make sure the Congress overturns an illegal Act by an administration. And that’s what they did. If you believe in the law, you’ll support me. If you don’t believe in the law, you won’t support me.”
Responding to questions regarding the intent and integrity of ANILCA, a law that clearly protects and affirms Alaska’s management authority of fish and wildlife ((P. L. 96 – 487, §1314), Young again reiterated his belief that this is a matter of properly enforcing the law.
Young defending ANILCA and Alaska’s authority to manage fish and wildlife upon federal lands (click here to watch).
“We’ve made it perfectly clear under that Act that the State has the right to manage fish and wildlife on federal lands – under our Statehood Act also. I want to keep stressing that,” said Congressman Young. “I’m a little bit concerned. I know what kind of T.V. has come out. I know what’s been said. It’s really a flat falsehood. To have people attack the State of Alaska after the Congress passed the Statehood Act – something we agreed to. That’s what people don’t understand. To have an administration go beyond that, and in fact impugn the law written by Congress, that’s wrong. Whether you agree with the animal part of it or not, that doesn’t really concern me. It is the breaking of the rules – set by Congress – by an administration. I’d be saying the same thing, I don’t care who it was. It’s wrong.”
For detailed information on H.J. Res. 69 and Young’s efforts to overturn the August 5, 2016 FWS rule, click here.
For complete coverage of the House Rules Committee hearing, click here.
Note to media – Upcoming Legislative Action
Moments ago, the House approved a rule to consider H.J. Res. 69 on the House floor tomorrow.
The House will take up H.J. Res. 69 for full consideration on Thursday, February 16, 2016 between 12:15pm – 1:15pm (EST). Congressman Young will speak again in favor on his resolution of disapproval.
Click here for a live stream of the House floor.
Washington, D.C. – Alaska Congressman Don Young is moving forward with an effort to overturn two Obama-era rules impacting the management of fish and game upon Alaska refuge lands and future development and exploration in the Arctic Outer Continental Shelf.
The actions represent a collective effort in Congress to overturn costly and often politically charged rules – issued in the final months of the Obama Administration – through the use of the Congressional Review Act (CRA). The Act is a powerful Congressional tool to disapprove of new federal regulations through an expedited legislative process, requiring a simple majority in both Chambers and the signature of the President.
Congressman Young introduced the following resolutions of disapproval:
H.J. Res 70, a joint resolution of disapproval under the CRA, would overturn a Department of Interior (DOI) final rule governing oil and gas exploration in the Arctic OCS, which would add upwards of $2 billion in additional regulatory costs on industry.
“For years, the Obama Administration tried to convince the American people that it supported an “all-of-the-above” energy policy. Yet, at every turn they proposed crippling new rules and regulations that locked away our nation’s vital resources,” Congressman Young said of his Arctic resolution of disapproval. “This rule, combined with unilateral actions to permanently withdraw the Arctic OCS for exploration, represents a significant blow to Alaska’s already sensitive economy, future development in the region and the security of the Trans-Alaska Pipeline. Not only does this rule lock in the status-quo for exploration, it eliminates the opportunity to carefully and methodically introduce new technologies. Bottom line, I am fighting to overturn a number of the shortsighted actions taken by the Obama administration, including this costly, overly prescriptive new rule – which could add upwards of $2 billion in development costs – and make it nearly impossible for exploration to move forward in the future.”
H.J. Res 69, a joint resolution of disapproval under the CRA, would overturn an August 5, 2016 final rule by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service that significantly restricts hunting and wildlife management practices upon federal lands in Alaska, in violation of the Alaska Statehood Compact and Alaska National Interest Land Conservation Act (ANILCA).
“There’s no question, the Fish and Wildlife Service rule – which lays claim to more than 20 percent of our state – violates ANILCA and the Alaska Statehood Compact,” said Congressman Don Young. “Not only does this action undermine Alaska’s ability to manage fish and wildlife upon refuge lands, it fundamentally destroys a cooperative relationship between Alaska and the federal government. I continue to fight to protect Alaska’s sovereignty and management authority and will use every tool at my discretion to strike this rule.”
If passed, Young’s joint resolutions of disapproval would ensure that the final rules issues by the Department of Interior and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service would have no force or effect, and that no substantially similar rule can be issued in the future without a subsequent authorization from Congress.
In addition, Congressman Young has cosponsored four additional resolutions of disapproval:
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Washington, D.C. – Alaska Congressman Don Young today announced his Committee assignments for the 115th Congress, which once again include senior positions on the House Natural Resources Committee and House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee.
House Natural Resources Committee – Chairman Emeritus
After fulfilling a successful 6-year term as Chairman of the Indian, Insular and Alaska Native Affairs Subcommittee, Congressman Young was named Chairman Emeritus of the full House Committee on Natural Resources. This new role, as the Committee’s second most senior member, allows Young to bring his years of experience and knowledge to all five of the panel’s Subcommittees:
The appointment furthers Young’s ability to take lead on a number of vital Natural Resources related priorities, including the reauthorization of national fisheries legislation – the Magnuson-Stevens Act – and efforts to develop our nation’s many natural resources, particularly in the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska and the Arctic.
“As we move forward with an aggressive agenda to unleash our nation’s energy potential and begin streamlining a growing patchwork of federal policies, I look forward to my new role as Chairman Emeritus of the House Natural Resources Committee,” said Congressman Don Young. “Although I’ve reached my 6-year term limit as Chairman of the IIANA Subcommittee, I am confident this new role will give Alaskans an even stronger voice in Congress by allowing me a to shape policy on all five of our subcommittees. With willing partners in the White House and a unified Congress, I’m extremely optimistic about the progress we’ll make during the 115th Congress.”
Chairman of the House Natural Resources Committee Rob Bishop (R-UT) offered the following statement:
“Congressman Young’s expertise will be absolutely critical in advancing Committee’s agenda in this new environment, and this new assignment will allow us to use his deep institutional knowledge in all subcommittees.”
House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee
Congressman Young was once again selected to serve upon the House’s largest Congressional panel, the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee. As a former Chairman and the Committee’s most senior member, Young has consistently worked to provide Alaskans with robust investments to develop critical infrastructure and transportation systems. Young was named the following three subcommittees:
“As we continue to fight for greater investments in the Arctic and throughout Alaska, I look forward to once again serving on these three subcommittees,” said Congressman Young. “Each subcommittee is critically important to Alaska, particularly as we move forward with efforts to rebuild our nation’s ice breaking fleet, update our nation’s aviation systems, and begin working on a robust infrastructure package. As a mariner, and a passionate advocate for the Arctic and infrastructure development, I look forward playing a powerful role in crafting new legislation to bring our nation’s roads, rails, bridges and maritime infrastructure into the 21st century.”
House Republican Policy Committee
In addition, Congressman Young was appointed by House Leadership to serve upon the Republican Policy Committee as the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee designee. This longstanding Committee serves as an advisory council to the House Republican Conference and serves as a forum to discuss important policy initiatives before the House. The RPC meets on a bi-weekly basis when the House is in session and on an ad-hoc basis, as appropriate, to discuss legislation before the House.
Congressman Young served as the Chairman of the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee from January 2001 – January 2007; as the Chairman of the Natural Resources Committee from January 1995 – January 2001, and Ranking Member from 2007-2008. Young served as the Chairman of the Indian, Insular and Alaska Native Affairs Committee from January 2011 – January 2017.
* In 1994, Republicans in the House and Senate self-imposed 6-year term limits for House Committee Chairs and leadership positions.
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Alaska Congressman Don Young today applauded the Senate passage of H.J. Res. 38, a joint resolution of disapproval under the Congressional Review Act, which would overturn the Department of Interior’s Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement’s final rule known as the “Stream Buffer Rule.” H.J. Res. 38 passed the U.S. House of Representatives yesterday by a vote of 228 to 194 and now moves to the President’s desk for signature.
“This rule was a thinly veiled attempt to destroy the coal mining industry and regulate hardworking Americans right out of their livelihoods,” said Congressman Young. “Sadly, the Obama administration’s war on coal manifested into some of the worst rule making I’ve seen in years – debilitating new regulations focused on eliminating one of our nation’s most reliable domestic energy sources. By failing to cooperate with existing stakeholders and states, ignoring numerous advancements made in technology, and not fully analyzing the Alaskan impact, it’s clear to me that the previous administration sought a predetermined outcome – based entirely on politics and with little regard for the working men and women of the United States.”
The "Stream Buffer Rule", finalized on December 20, 2016, rewrites over 450 existing regulations, adds a patchwork of duplicative and conflicting regulatory requirements without discernible environmental benefit, ignores regulatory successes at the federal and state level, and jeopardizes one-third of the nation’s coal mining workforce. Further, in the Office of Surface Mining’s (OSM) rulemaking process, the agency ignored Alaska’s long term potential of coal development and failed to fully take into consideration Alaska’s abundant coal deposits.
Today’s action represents a collective effort in Congress to overturn costly and often politically charged rules – issued in the final months of the Obama Administration – through the use of the Congressional Review Act (CRA). The Act is a powerful Congressional tool to disapprove of new federal regulations through an expedited legislative process, requiring a simple majority in both Chambers and the signature of the President.
By Emily Yehle, E&E News reporter
Alaska Republican Rep. Don Young wants lawmakers to use the Congressional Review Act to strike down recent regulations on drilling and hunting in his state.
Young introduced two joint resolutions on Friday. H.J. Res. 34 would undo final operating standards for exploratory drilling in the Arctic, while H.J. Res. 35 would reverse hunting limitations in Alaska's national wildlife refuges.
The CRA gives Congress the power to undo regulations enacted within the last 60 legislative days. That means rules released on or after June 13 are fair game, according to the Congressional Research Service.
The Interior Department released the exploratory drilling rule in July. It requires companies to follow numerous safety requirements when drilling in the Arctic, including maintaining a backup rig and having immediate access to blowout prevention equipment (E&E News PM, July 7, 2016).
The Obama administration later withdrew most Arctic waters from oil and gas leasing — a move that Young's legislation would not address.
Interior's Fish and Wildlife Service finalized the wildlife refuge rule in August. It largely prohibits state-sanctioned hunting techniques on FWS land, such as using spotlights to shoot black bears while they hibernate.
FWS officials have said the methods reduce the number of predators to boost populations of caribou, moose and other prey.
Alaska filed a lawsuit earlier this month challenging the rule, saying that it impairs the state's ability to manage its wildlife resources (Greenwire, Jan. 16).
Young's resolutions are among many Republicans have introduced to roll back Obama-era rules. Lawmakers need only a simple majority to pass the measures, but the process can be time-consuming; each resolution is entitled to 10 hours of debate in the Senate.Read More
Washington, D.C. – Alaska Congressman Don Young today shared the following statement on President Trump’s most recent actions on immigration:
“Over the past three days, I have closely reviewed the President’s actions on immigration – a 90 day pause on travel from seven, heightened-threat nations identified by our intelligence community, Congress and the Obama administration – a temporary halt to refugee resettlement in the United States for 120 days, and an indefinite halt to Syrian refugee resettlement.
“As many will agree, I believe the roll-out of this order was flawed. It left those tasked with implementing this policy with inadequate information and little direction, and resulted in what many believe to be the wrongful detention of certain lawful residents of the United States. The White House and the Department of Homeland Security are working to clarify this language, including a clear exception for green card holders, to ensure its implementation is consistent with its intent.
“This administration has made it very clear – throughout the election cycle and since entering office – they are focused on protecting the American people from foreign and emerging threats. Ultimately, I support the goals of increased security, additional screening and added layers of safety. I believe we must do everything in our power to ensure our immigration system is complete, thorough and capable of examining threats – particularly from some of the most dangerous regions of the globe. This temporary pause allows our nation to review its vetting process and begin addressing some of the many national security holes identified by those in our intelligence and counter-terrorism community.”
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Alaska Congressman Don Young today announced his official list of Alaskan students nominated for appointment to a United States Service Academy for the class of 2021.
“Each and every year I take great pride in nominating an exceptional group of Alaskan students to our nation’s service academies,” said Congressman Don Young. “These students represent some of the best and brightest our state has to offer – dedicated and committed to serving others, our many communities and a cause much greater than their own. I have no question these 47 talented students will proudly represent the state of Alaska and humbly serve as our nation’s next generation of leaders. I wish them all the best in the academy appointment process and look forward to their many successes.”
Earning a Service Academy nomination is a tremendous honor and accomplishment, but does not guarantee an academy appointment. Final nominations will be made by the respective service academy in the coming months.
In October 2016, Congressman Young hosted an “All Academies Night” in Fairbanks to give Alaskan students the opportunity to learn about attending one our nation’s military academies. For more information on the academy nomination process, please click here.
A list of Congressman Don Young’s nominees and their hometowns can be found below:
U.S. Military Academy – West Point, New York:
Savannah N. Bassett, Eagle River
Brandon M. Brooks, JBER
Madison A. Clark, Tok
Robert M. Kilbourn, Fairbanks
Madeline L. Larson, Wasilla
Elias Markose, JBER
Taylor B. Mulkins, Palmer
Holden S. Quinn, Palmer
Kevin M. Sargent, Anchorage
Brynn P. Sulte, Anchorage
U.S. Air Force Academy – Colorado Springs, Colorado:
Grant A. Barkhurst, JBER
Amelia S. Butler, Wasilla
Mary K. Crowley, Palmer
Nathan D. Guillermo, Eagle River
Robert W. Haan, Palmer
Ethan L. Isaacson, Anchorage
Reese K.T. Kodama, Anchorage
Brody C. Lambert, Eagle River
Kade J. Leonard, Eielson AFB
Andrew M. Luiken, Anchorage
Brady A. McGee, Eagle River
Raymond W. Metzger, Anchorage
Tanner M. Michie, Ft. Greely
Cole M. Mooty, Eagle River
Fintan T. Nakada, Anchorage
Nicolas J. Osborne, Eagle River
Cole R. Phelps, Anchorage
Cameron R. Shideler, Anchorage
Emi N. Siler, North Pole
Justus N. Tiffany, JBER
U.S. Naval Academy – Annapolis, Maryland:
Christopher M. Bailey, Anchorage
Thomas C. Chandler, Big Lake
Kyle P. Collins, Anchorage
Andrew T. Hampton, Anchorage
Walter S. Nagel, Palmer
Dawson L. Nash, Palmer
John W. Norton, Kodiak
Stephanie R. Oliva, JBER
Matthew N. Piscoya, Fairbanks
Charles J. Tung, Anchorage
U.S. Merchant Marine Academy – Kings Point, New York:
Michael K. Anderson, JBER
Bradley J. Grover, Wasilla
Tamryn G. Hodge, Bethel
Ryan H. Kavalok, Palmer
Jeffrey W. Lautrup, Palmer
Dillon T. Scarboro, North Pole
Gerik C. Sherrill, Ketchikan
Conner P. Verfaillie, Valdez
Delana M. Wesen, Anchorage
2314 Rayburn HOB
Washington, DC 20515
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.
I've long refrained from using term “Fake News”, but may reconsider after seeing dishonesty & deceit regarding HJ Res. 69. Check the facts!
Proud to have support of AK Senate in my effort to overturn egregious and unlawful seizure of AK’s wildlife managem… https://t.co/XOSP6SdBhE
While I don't advocate for marijuana use, I believe its a states' rights issue. Read about launch of Cannabis Caucu… https://t.co/NmN8sIefVj
I said I'd fight to overturn the U.S. FWS rule - a violation of fed law -- and now we're one step closer. https://t.co/nca8YCwh5J
As a co-chair of the Congressional Cannabis Caucus, my hope is to begin educating my colleagues and the administration on the many issues we
Thank you to the Alaska Baha’i community for inviting me to learn more about your faith and tour your local center in Anchorage. As your Congressman,
Thank you to the Alaska Air Carriers Association for inviting me to speak on the future of aviation in Alaska and the nation. As a tireless champion
Thank you to the Alaska State Senate for adopting a resolution in support of H.J. Res. 69, an effort I’m making in Congress to overturn an
Happy Presidents’ Day!