Alaska Congressman Don Young announced his official list of Alaskan students nominated for appointment to a United States Service Academy for the class of 2022.
“I’m always proud of the young students who are interested in serving our country,” said Congressman Young. “This year, I’m delighted to nominate an exceptional group of Alaskans to our nation’s service academies. These nominees reflect the values of our state and are a strong example of what the next generation can achieve. I wish them all the best in the academy appointment process and I look forward to seeing 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 academies in the coming months.
A list of Congressman Don Young’s 49 nominees and their hometowns are below:
U.S. Military Academy – West Point, New York:
Nathan B. Alfano, Anchorage
Michael Y. Altenburg, JBER
Kirsten Alvarado, Anchorage
Garrett O. Anderson, Palmer
Kenneth D. Campbell-Parson, Ft. Wainwright
Hanna M. Fitzgerald, Eagle River
Caleb J. Hopkins, Palmer
David J. Hwang, Ft. Wainwright
Nolan P. Johnson, Eagle River
Michael A. Lucero, Fairbanks
Kyle L. McKamey, Eielson AFB
Christopher D. Orta, Anchorage
Cody S. Quelland, Soldotna
Holden S. Quinn, Palmer
Emily G. Rivera, Kodiak
Jacob C. Schlenker, North Pole
Garrett E. Smoot, Eagle River
Calvin E. Strong, Kenai
Shafer S. Suzuki, Juneau
Rebecca M. Syrup, Anchorage
U.S. Air Force Academy – Colorado Springs, Colorado:
Mallori T. Allen, Wasilla
Grant A. Barkhurst, Elmendorf AFB
Mikaela C. Becker, JBER
Isaac E. Bennett, Eagle River
Trevor G. Houghton, Anchorage
Carter M. Kreischer, Kodiak
Madison L. Maroney, Anchorage
Wade Quigley, Girdwood
Cameron R. Shideler,
Matthew C. Simmons, Anchorage
U.S. Naval Academy, Annapolis, Maryland:
Hunter P. Bleakney, Palmer
Tamara B. Brabson, Eagle River
Daniel L. Clum Jr., Wasilla
Kyle P. Collins, Anchorage
Gavin K. Kim, JBER
Kade J. Leonard, Eielson AFB
Mikaela A. Maroney, Anchorage
Nolan C. Meyer, Ketchikan
Joseph R. Ryan, Wasilla
Vince R. Tenebro, Ketchikan
U.S. Merchant Marine Academy – Kings Point, New York:
Philip M. Andress, Anchorage
Alex B. Binder, Anchorage
Ryan B. Chastain, Palmer
Quentin H. Cox, Valdez
Kenneth C. Donnolly, JBER
Oriana A. Faruqi, Anchorage
Anders B. Marius, Sitka
Sean K. O’Meara, Juneau
Colton W. Ramsey, Fairbanks### Read More
Today, Alaska Congressman Don Young voted in support of the two-year, bipartisan budget agreement and issued the following statement:
“After weeks of negotiations, Congress has passed a budget agreement that meets many of the needs of the country and it is particularly good news for Alaskans. This bill secures funding for our military to ensure that they have the necessary resources to continue keeping our country safe and carrying out their missions. I worked closely with Members of the House Leadership, my colleagues on the Appropriations Committee and Senators Murkowski and Sullivan to ensure that funds for military construction projects were included so that the Eielson Air Force Base could stay on schedule to prepare for the beddown of the F-35A Joint Strike Fighters. Due to the short construction season, this was an incredibly time sensitive priority and will ensure our nation’s full operational capability in the Pacific.
This bipartisan agreement also makes significant investments that will improve the quality of care our veterans receive, address our crumbling infrastructure, provide 2 years of funding for community health centers – which are crucial to Alaskans – as well as combat opioid abuse and drug addiction. There is an additional 4-year extension for the Children’s Health Care Program (CHIP), Denali KidCare as we know it in Alaska, which gives the program 10 years of certainty and is the longest authorization in its history. These are major victories for both our state and the country.
While there is still work to do, I believe that the legislation Congress passed today will deliver relief to local communities and make sure that our military can effectively rebuild and address the security of our nation. We will continue to work on developing more long-term funding solutions.”
Health Care Funding
Today, the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 219, the Swan Lake Hydroelectric Project Boundary Correction Act. Alaska Congressman Don Young introduced this legislation to update a boundary line for the Project in Southeast Alaska.
“The Swan Lake Hydroelectric Project is a remote facility in Southeast Alaska that provides electric power to nearly 20,000 of my constituents in the cities of Petersburg, Wrangell and Ketchikan and the surrounding areas,” said Congressman Young. “In 1994, the land was surveyed by the federal government and transferred to the State of Alaska in 1997. In 2012, the project operator discovered an error in the federal government’s survey and determined an additional 25.8 acres of federal land would be covered with water if the dam level were raised as planned.
“There is no disagreement among the federal and state agencies concerned that an error occurred. H.R. 219 would fix the error by requiring the Secretary of the Interior to correct the survey and transfer the remaining acreage to the State of Alaska. This is a common-sense bill that promotes green energy development at zero cost to the federal government.”
“The [Swan Lake] Project was authorized by FERC and operation began in 1984,” said Hawaii Congresswoman Colleen Hanabusa. “It is currently operated by a not-for-profit Alaskan joint action agency called the Southeast Alaska Power Agency. These utilities provide an estimated 62% of the power consumed by the communities they serve. The survey that was used to convey land for the expansion project contained a mistake and omitted the Lost Creek section and other additional areas.”
H.R. 219 would correct the error by requiring the Secretary of the Interior, after consultation with the Secretary of Agriculture, to survey the exterior boundaries of the tract of federal land within the Swan Lake Hydroelectric Project boundary and transfer the surveyed federal land within the project to the State of Alaska. There is agreement among the federal and State agencies that this error was the reason 25.8 acres of Forest Service lands within the Project boundary were not transferred back in 1997.
The passage of H.R. 219 marks the fifth bill Congressman Young has passed out of the House in the 115th Congress.### Read More
Tonight, President Trump presented his State of the Union address to both chambers of Congress. Alaska Congressman Don Young issued the following statement in response:
“I think it was a great speech,” said Congressman Young. “Now, it’s up to Congress to act on many of the issues the President discussed tonight. Infrastructure, for example, is going to be a big project for us. I believe this was good news for Alaskan and we have many positive projects to look forward to.”
Click here to watch Congressman Young’s reaction to the State of the Union address.### Read More
Washington, D.C. – U.S. Sens. Lisa Murkowski, Dan Sullivan, and Rep. Don Young, all R-Alaska, today sent a letter to Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke to provide comment on the Alaska-specific offshore areas in the Draft Proposed Program (DPP) for Outer Continental Shelf oil and gas leasing for 2019-2024 that should be included in its Final Proposed Program.
“We commend you for taking an inclusive approach that allows for meaningful public input as you determine where responsible development should occur on our nation’s Outer Continental Shelf,” the delegation wrote. “For far too long, arbitrary and unilateral executive actions have undermined the open process that Congress established through the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act. This has harmed states like Alaska, where tens of millions of acres of waters were previously closed without public input, consultation, or support.
“We strongly support the inclusion of the Chukchi and Beaufort planning areas in the Draft Proposed Program (DPP) and encourage you to maintain three lease sales in each area over the 2019-2024 period. At the same time, given the diversity of stakeholders in this region, we urge you to commit your Department to meaningful consultation with local communities.
“We ask that you maintain the two lease sales the DPP envisions in the Cook Inlet planning area. While a mature basin, this area continues to provide an important supply of affordable energy for communities throughout southcentral Alaska.
“We believe the strongest near-term offshore program in Alaska is one that focuses on the Chukchi, Beaufort, and Cook Inlet. Such a program will maximize agency resources and reflect the areas with the broadest support for development among Alaskans. Accordingly, we ask that you remove potential sales in the Hope Basin, Norton Basin, St. Matthew-Hall, Navarin Basin, Aleutian Basin, Bowers Basin, Aleutian Arc, St. George Basin, Shumagin, Kodiak, and Gulf of Alaska from the DPP.”
A copy of the letter can be found here.
The DPP is the initial step in the decision making process and the first opportunity for public comment on the draft program. Areas that are included in the draft program may be included in the final, but areas that are excluded from the DPP, like the North Aleutian Basin, are excluded from further consideration in this five year program.
The DPP was published in the Federal Register earlier this month, and the deadline for public comments is March 9, 2018. The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) is conducting public meetings with local stakeholders across the country, including one in Anchorage, Alaska on February 21.
The DPP proposes 19 lease sales in Alaska’s OCS, including three sales in the Chukchi Sea, three sales in the Beaufort Sea, two sales in Cook Inlet, and one sale each in 11 other program areas. BOEM recently increased its estimate for the Beaufort Sea by 700 million barrels to a total of 8.9 billion barrels, while the Chukchi Sea is estimated to contain 15.4 billion barrels. The Cook Inlet is a mature basin but remains a critical source of natural gas for Southcentral Alaska.
U.S. Sens. Lisa Murkowski, Dan Sullivan, and Rep. Don Young, all R-Alaska, today released the following statements after the Department of the Interior and the King Cove Corp. signed an agreement authorizing a small land exchange needed to construct a short, gravel, life-saving road that will connect King Cove, Alaska to the all-weather airport in nearby Cold Bay.
“I have been working with the residents of King Cove for over 30 years to help them get a life-saving road to the community of Cold Bay. This is a great day not only for King Cove, but for all of Alaska,” Young said. “In 2013, Sally Jewell decided that birds were more important than people, and today we finally have a Secretary who takes the life and death of Alaska Natives seriously. I want to thank Secretary Zinke on behalf of all Alaskans for his work in getting the King Cove road approved. I look forward to working with him on other issues for our great state.”
“Common sense and compassion have finally prevailed,” Murkowski said. “For decades, the people of King Cove have asked for what virtually every other American already takes for granted—a reliable way to protect their health and safety and improve their quality of life. Previous administrations have focused on just about everything except the most obvious solution, which has always been a short, gravel connector road. I am so pleased for King Cove and deeply grateful to Secretary Zinke and President Trump for taking this critical step.”
“For years, our federal government has been telling the people of King Cove that protecting birds is more important than their health and safety,” Sullivan said. “This ends today. I thank Congressman Young and Senator Murkowski for all their hard work over the years to right this wrong. I thank the Trump administration for its support, and I particularly thank Secretary Zinke for listening to the people of King Cove, whose voices have been ignored all of these many years. This is a good day for Alaska and a good day for America.”
The King Cove Corp. is comprised of Alaska Natives from two Aleut tribes who have lived in the region for millennia. A lifelong resident, member of the local Agdaagux tribe, and community spokesperson, Della Trumble, signed the agreement on behalf of King Cove today with Secretary Zinke.
“The land exchange agreement with the Interior Department represents a major milestone in our decades-long fight to protect our families and secure our access to safe, reliable transportation options in an emergency. This is truly a matter of life and death to us and we are extremely grateful to Sen. Murkowski and the entire delegation for standing with us for all these years,” said Trumble.
“Above all, the federal government's job is to keep our people safe and respect our treaty commitments with Native Americans and Alaska Natives, today I am proudly fulfilling both of those missions,” Secretary Zinke said. “Previous administrations prioritized birds over human lives, and that's just wrong. The people of King Cove have been stewarding the land and wildlife for thousands of years and I am confident that working together we will be able to continue responsible stewardship while also saving precious lives.”
Roads already exist in several parts of the Izembek refuge, and have had no negative effect on local bird or wildlife populations.
King Cove is located between two volcanic mountains near the end of the Alaska Peninsula, about 625 miles southwest of Anchorage. The small gravel airstrip in King Cove is typically closed more than 100 days each year by strong winds, turbulence, fog, rain, and other severe weather. Even flights that are not canceled are routinely delayed by dangerous conditions. By comparison, the all-weather airport in Cold Bay, which is less than 30 miles away from King Cove, is home to one of the longest runways in the state and closed an average of just 10 days per year.
A total of 18 people have died in plane crashes or waiting to be medevaced from King Cove since the creation of the Izembek refuge in 1980.
For more information about the land exchange, please visit the Department of the Interior’s website.
Today, Alaska Congressman Don Young supported a Continuing Resolution (CR) to reopen the federal government.
“Today, Congress fulfilled its duty to resume funding the federal government,” said Congressman Young. “Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer played politics with responsible governing by leading the charge to shut down the government. This was an avoidable crisis he championed and downright irresponsible. While shutting down the government was absolutely unnecessary in order to continue the ongoing immigration reform discussions or determine a long-term spending fix, as the Democrats insisted, I am glad to see a compromise was reached. This CR will extend funding for the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) for the next 6 years and ensure that our service members are properly paid – this is crucial for Alaskans and the country.”
Alaska Congressman Don Young released the following statement after Senate Democrats voted to shut down the federal government:
“I am disappointed to see that Senate Democrats are playing politics with funding the federal government. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer is putting his political party above what’s best for our country. That is neither the way to govern nor the job he was elected to do. By trying to tack on an immigration reform measure to this Continuing Resolution (CR), he is abandoning the legislative process which Congress has a responsibility to defend. This is an ineffective approach to solving the bigger issue of immigration reform and puts millions of lives at risk to make a shameful political ploy.
"As Dean of the House, I have experienced more than a dozen shutdowns and quite frankly, they aren’t the answer. Shutting down the government is incredibly irresponsible and a misguided strategy. In the House, we passed a CR that will keep the government open through next month which would allow us to finalize a long-term solution. By voting against this bill, Senate Democrats deliberately chose to deny funding to the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), our military, and the thousands of Americans that rely on the federal government functioning properly. We all recognize the CR is a temporary solution but one of the main responsibilities of Congress is to fund the government. Our constituents sent us to Washington to keep our government running, and I believe we must fulfill that duty.”
Alaska Congressman Don Young released the following statement after reading the classified memo prepared by the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence.
“As Dean of the House, I’ve served in this body for 45 years with 9 different Presidents and after reading the memo – I’m extremely concerned," said Congressman Young. "The findings in this memo are deeply troubling and I’m requesting a vote to release this information to the American public. I believe this information must be made public for the good of the nation. It is imperative that they know the truth and the sooner this is released, the better.”
On Thursday, January 18, 2018 the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence voted to release the classified memo to Members of Congress. No vote has been scheduled to make the information from the memo available to the public.
Today, the House Rules Committee held a hearing to discuss Article 1 of the Constitution regarding effective oversight and the power of the purse of Congress. The Committee welcomed House Members to discuss congressionally directed spending, also known as earmarks. Alaska Congressman Don Young testified before the Committee to offer his support:
“As Dean of the House, I’ve watched this process be successful in the House,” said Congressman Young. “My district is a little different from other districts because it’s made up of many, many small communities. Under the current system, we appropriate money to the agencies which in turn goes to our states and in doing so, our rural communities are often forgotten. This is a crucial issue to this Congress…until this is solved, we are no longer the Congress of the People, we are just people. We have the responsibility to respond to our constituent’s needs – that’s our job as Congressmen.”
Watch Congressman Young’s opening statement.
Dozens of House Members testified before the Committee to offer their statements and answer questions from the Committee.
Watch Congressman Young respond to questions from the Committee.
“I call these Projects of Constituents Interests not earmarks because these projects come from our people,” said Congressman Young. “As long as Congress stays within the parameters of the budget, this doesn’t add to the deficit. We direct the spending instead of the bureaucracy.”
Article I of the Constitution guarantees that Congress has the authority to direct federal spending. In 2011, a ban was placed on using earmarks, which has led to a heightened partisan gridlock in Washington, D.C. With this ban, Congress has abdicated its responsibility to oversee how taxpayer dollars are being spent and instead has relied on federal agencies, where unelected bureaucrats distribute funding with less transparency and accountability.
Watch the full hearing here.Read More
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 had the best lunch today in Fairbanks with Lee Babcock at the Cookie Jar. What a true Alaskan! https://t.co/5psqWWIltL
As a former Mayor, I know the challenges our local communities face and it requires dedicated leaders to work toget… https://t.co/0f3QzS7mUW
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