Alaska

State Whistleblower Score

Score: 51/100 points

Rank: 38/51 states

Alaska has a relatively weak whistleblower law with moderately broad coverage (19 out of 33 possible points), limited usability (17 out of 33) and weak remedies (14 out of 33).

Read the full assessment here»

 

State Public Records Law

Alaska Statutes

Alaska Statutes § 40. 25.100 – Public Records Disclosures
Alaska Statutes § 40. 21 – Management and Preservation of Public Records

Read the full text

Exemptions to Disclosure

§ 40. 25.120 exempts:

  • Records compiled for law enforcement purposes, to the extent could interfere with law enforcement proceedings
  • Records that are proprietary, privileged or trade secrets
  • Records subject to deliberative process privilege not automatically exempt, but defeat Public Records Act’s usual presumption of disclosure (burden shifts to requestor of the records) [Fuller v. City of Homer, 75 P.3d 1059 (2003), 113 P.3d 659 on subsequent appeal]
  • Terms of confidential agreements w/ the natural gas industry [2014 Alaska Laws Ch. 14 (S.B. 138)]
  • Information that is subject to a confidentiality agreement
  • Exceptions to the disclosure requirements of this section are construed narrowly in furtherance of the legislature’s expressed bias in favor of broad public access. Municipality of Anchorage v. Anchorage Daily News, 794 P.2d 584 (Alaska 1990).
  • Government bears the burden of justifying the denial of access. Id.
  • A government agency is not entitled to delay access. Id

Access Rights

  • Every person
  • Time sheets are not exempt [Alaska Wildlife Alliance v. Rue, 948 P.2d 976 (1997)]
  • Inspection during regular office hours·“Reasonable fees” for copies – can be increased as needed to cover expenses
  • Any electronic info in printed form must come with an explanation of any codes/symbols
  • Apply to records maintained by municipalities
  • If court finds record to be subject to deliberative process privilege, burden shifts to requestor to show public’s interest in disclosure outweighs government’s interest in confidentiality. [Fuller v. City of Homer, 75 P.3d 1059 (2003), 113 P.3d 659 on subsequent appeal]

Destruction of Public Records

  • § 40.21.080 – Records to be disposed must be routine with no legal, historical, or administrative value. Prior to disposal, must obtain approval of governing body of political subdivision, and file list of all records disposed of.

Alaska News

Alaska Misuses Federal Wildlife Aid on Killing Predators

Penalize Alaska for Diverting Conservation Dollars to Intensive Management

NOAA Passes the Buck on Alaska Crab Fishery Collapses

Denies Blame for Wildly Inflated Population Estimates Causing Overfishing

Foreign Research Vessels Free to Wreak Eco-Havoc

No Notice, Permits, or Monitoring; Mass Beaching of Rare Whales Probed

End Federal Subsidies for States’ War on Wolves  

Move to Disqualify States from Federal Aid for Excessive Predator Removal   

Alaska Red King Crab Dethroned by Scientific Fraud

For 40 Years NOAA Inflated Population and Masked Disastrous Overfishing

Letter to NOAA Section 515 Officer – Bristol Bay Red King Crabs – 04-26-2021 (PDF) 

DESCRIPTION: Letter to NOAA Section 515 Officer regarding the complaint about information quality on Bristol Bay ...

Arctic Refuge Becoming Oil & Gas White Elephant 

Desperate Last-Minute Government Maneuvers Denote Industry Disinterest 

Forest Service Tongass Timber Audit Remains Hidden

Lawsuit Seeks Overdue Audit as Forest Service Preps Big Timber Expansion 

Don’t Disney-fy Denali

Big Recreational Development for Wonder Lake Would Pave Paradise

Chances of Seeing Denali Wolves in the Wild Now Remote

1% Viewing Success Record Low After State Eliminated No-Hunt Buffers

Wheels Coming Off Trump Arctic Refuge Drive

Haste to Roll Out Leasing Approvals Proves to be Their Undoing

Alaska Governor Makes Baseless Allegations

False Accusations Imperil Work of FWS Employees

Arctic Refuge Drilling Scientific Concerns Suppressed

Memos Outlining Major Environmental and Public Health Information Gaps Buried

BLM Cuts Engineering Oversight of Aging Trans-Alaska Pipeline

BLM Alaska Downsizing Reduces Both Staff and Oil Company Reimbursements

Oil Tax for Federal Spill Fund Lapsed with New Year

Oil and Oil Sands Pay No Federal Taxes Despite Potentially Huge Cleanup Costs

Alaska Demands Feds Cede All Wildlife Management

Wish List to Axe Conservation, Wilderness, and Endangered Species Protections

Alaska Permanent Fund Weans off Fossil Fuel Companies

Both Portfolio Percentage and Return-on-Investment in Oil & Gas Down Sharply

Lawsuit to Penetrate Alaska Petroleum Controversy

Premature Disclosure of New NPRA Estimates Led to Resignation in Ethics Protest

Assault Rifle Slaughter of Wolves Outside Denali

Alaska Belatedly Imposes No-Hunt Buffer to Avert Wolf Population Implosion

Rick Steiner: Protecting Alaska’s Bounty

As a faculty member of the University of Alaska during the Bush Administration, Rick spoke out about the ...

Alaska Pares Its Predator Control Program

State Agrees to National Academy Review of Scientific Merits as Opposition Mounts

Forest Service Wants to Pay More in Money-Losing Timber Sale

Alaska Region Urges Off-the-Books Cash to Logger to Sweeten Tongass Contract

Forest Service Scalped on Tongass Timber Sales

Bad Sales Cost Taxpayers & Alaska Schools Big Money and Hurt the Forest

Far More Hunting Inside Denali Than on Its Boundary

Impact of Larger Toll on Sustainable Park Wildlife Populations Poorly Understood

Alaska Game Agents Decimate National Park Wolf Packs

Air-Hunts and “Judas Wolf” Tactics Wipe out Natural Sustainable Wolf Populations

Alaskan Refuge Moose Hunting Cabin Draws Scrutiny

Phony Claim of Scientific Research Masks Violations to Benefit Manager’s Cronies

Alaska Seabird Reintroduction Boondoggle

Eider Project to Cost Nearly a Million per Breeding Hen with Uncertain Prospects

Shell Arctic Offshore Safety Data Still Under Wraps

Specifics Bolstering President’s Assurance Cannot Be Produced Until After Drilling

Call for Obama to Declare First Alaskan Marine Monuments

100,000 Sign Petition Seeking Permanent Protections for At-Risk Alaskan Waters

War Games Open Fire in Gulf of Alaska

Eco-Effects of Sonar Arrays and Gunnery Unclear Even in Scaled Back Exercises

Hunting Compounds Record Low Denali Wolf Survival

110,000+ Sign Petition as NPS Backtracks on Factors behind Ultra-Low Wolf Density

NOAA Shies Away From Aleutians Marine Sanctuary

National Monument Designation May be Only Route for Protecting Alaskan Waters

Aleutians Should Be Alaska’s First National Marine Sanctuary

Nomination Calls for First Permanent Federal Eco-Protections in Alaska Waters

Exxon Valdez Damages Suit Drags Into 2015 and Perhaps Beyond

Judge Frustrated That Long Overdue Restoration Plan Still Not Near Completion

Move to End Federal Funding of Alaska Predator Control

State Should Repay Noncompliant Grants and Be Barred from Future Grants

On Exxon Valdez 25th Anniversary Much Remains Unresolved

Alaska Legislature Takes Up Measure Urging Action on Long-Stalled Damages Claim

Tsunami Warning Reliability at Risk in Stealth Reorganization

Downgrade of Pacific Center Bypasses Experts and Endangers Those It Protects

Vindicated Arctic Scientist Retires With Cash Settlement

$100,000 Payment and Belated Secretary’s Award Resolves Whistleblower Complaint

Denali Wolf Population Cratering Without State Buffer

Plummeting Sighting of Wolves Threatens Big Cash Tourist Draw for Alaska

Old Dead Fish Spark Spat Between Government and Oil Giant

Pacific Herring Tissue Samples from 2005 Figure in Ongoing Exxon Valdez Litigation

Exxon Valdez Recovery Remains Stuck in Limbo

Federal Judge “Dismayed” over Slow Pace of Promised Preliminary Work

State of Alaska Wastes Millions in Frivolous Eco-Suits

Failed Politicized Anti-Federal Challenges Argue for Independent Attorney General

Drowned Polar Bear Paper Vindicated – Again

Interior Rejects IG Call for Further Scientific Reviews yet Case Remains Open

No Climate Change Worries in Alaska

Governor’s Climate Sub-Cabinet Stopped Meeting Years Ago

IG Repeatedly Tried to Criminally Prosecute Arctic Scientist

After Charges Discredited, Drowned Polar Bear Case Reopened Without Explanation

Call to Open up Emergency Shell Arctic Review

Federal Agencies Need to Consult Outside Experts and Residents Not Just Industry

Alaska Dropped Ball on Runaway Shell Vessel

State Focused on Capacity of Towing Vessel to be Towed, Not on Its Ability to Tow

Arctic Offshore Drilling Safety Assurances Sought

Lawsuit to Force Release of Key Spill Prevention and Response Documents

Kafkaesque IG Polar Bear Report at Odds With Facts

Probe Commissioned to Plug Leaks and Root out Dissent on Arctic Offshore Drilling

Drowned Polar Bear Probe Closes With a Whimper

Unrelated Disclosures from 2007 and 2008 Dredged Up in Questionable Reprimand

Brits Decry Reckless Rush to Drill in Arctic Waters

House of Commons Calls for Moratorium Until Stronger Safeguards Are in Place

Interior Ignored Invasive Introduction Into Arctic Waters

Exotic Organisms on Oil Drilling Equipment Excluded from Environmental Reviews

Scant Testing for Arctic Blowout Capping System

Safety Agency Can Produce Only One Page of Notes to Demonstrate Cap Reliability

LAWSUIT FOR RELEASE OF KEY ARCTIC OFFSHORE SAFETY DATA

Testing Results for New Blowout Capping System Sought

DROWNED POLAR BEAR REPORT COMPLETED BUT UNRELEASED

Interior Inspector General Declares Itself Exempt from Scientific Integrity Policies

Polar Bear Probe Lumbers Into Its Third Year

New IG Interviews This Week as Arctic Research Flounders in Uncertainty

NOAA Cuts Tsunami and Seismic Safety Funding

Sudden Shift Rips Tsunami Warning Buoys and Alaska Emergency Preparedness

Polar Bear Probe Careens in New Directions

Inspector General Claims Even More Drowned Bears Seen Than Previously Reported

Exxon Valdez Oil Lingering in Environment, Feds Say

ExxonMobil Seeks to Block Collection of $100 Million Restoration Fund

Polar Bear Study Probe Falls Flat

Inspector General Concerns on Joint U.S.-Canadian Study Prove Groundless

Suspension of Arctic Scientist Suddenly Lifted

Agency Reversal Comes as It Falls Under Investigation for Scientific Misconduct

Polar Bear Paper Remains Focus of IG Probe of Arctic Scientist

IG Refuses to Identify Criminal Charge Rejected by Justice Department

Interior Polar Bear Flap Takes Ominous New Turn

Joint Study with Canadian Researchers Halted in Inspector General Probe

Arctic Scientist Protests Witch Hunt on Polar Bear Paper

Key Studies Disrupted as Supervising Federal Scientist Suspended from Duties

NOAA Keeps Gag Rule on University Marine Scientists

Rejects Petition to Lift Ban against “Advocacy” by Sea Grant Recipients

Chemical Caused Nerve Damage to Military Base Workers

Alaska Health Report Cannot ID Agent, Urges Permanent Paving for Base Site

Exxon Valdez Damages Remain Unsettled After 21 Years

Inability to Document Natural Resource Damages May Bedevil BP Spill Payments

Interior Cooking Books on Alaska Offshore Eco-Analyses

Interior Had Critical GAO Report Weeks before Unveiling Offshore Drilling Plans

International Scientists Condemn Purge of Professor

Scientific Commission Decries Oil Industry Influence at University of Alaska

NOAA Petitioned to Remove Gag on Sea Grant Researchers

University of Alaska Scientist Stripped of Grant for Speaking About Pro-Oil Bias

Professor Stripped of NOAA Funding for Advocacy

University of Alaska President Upholds Grant Removal and Office Eviction

NOAA Raises Red Flags on Aggressive Offshore Drilling Plan

Exclusion Zones, Buffers and Oil Spill Protections Would Scale Back Lease Schedule

Don’t Expect New Marine Sanctuaries Under Obama

NOAA Chief Says No Plans to Even Begin Considering New Ocean Reserves

$100 Million Still Owed From Exxon Valdez Oil Spill

U.S. and Alaska Fail to Collect $92 Million Damage Claim Filed Back in 2006

NOAA Sea Grant Seeks to Defund Scientist for Advocacy

Protest on Oil Industry Bias in Sea Grant Seen to “Cause Problems Nationally”

Probe Demanded Into Shutdown of BP Alaska Oil Spill Case

Senior EPA Agent Charges Criminal Investigation Truncated and Fines Slashed

Army Knew Alaska Base Family Housing Site Was Toxic

Audit Found Civil and Criminal Liability at Taku Gardens But No Action Taken

Army’s $100 Million Housing From Hell: Alaska’s Taku Gardens

Responsibility Evaded for Uninhabitable Base Family Housing Atop Weapons Dump

Shell’s Revolving Door Swings U.S. Arctic Drilling Program

Oil Company Grabs Top Agency Managers to Push What They Used to Regulate

U.S. Trusting Oil Companies to Safeguard Arctic Wildlife

Industry Permit Plans Not Subjected to Required Peer-Review or Monitoring

U.S. OFFSHORE LEASING PREMISED ON FUTURE OF CHEAP OIL

Planning Assumes $30 a Barrel Oil to Minimize Potential Environmental Impacts

OIL DEAL FOR ALASKA WILDLIFE REFUGE ON FAST TRACK

Yukon Flats Land Exchange Tied to Oil Development but No Time for Appraisals

Bowhead Whale Imperiled by Arctic Drilling Plans

Scientific Warnings on Oil Spills and Seismic Noise Disregarded to Speed Lease Sales

ARCTIC OCEAN OIL REVIEWS SOFT-PEDALED EXXON VALDEZ

Oil Spill Dangers to Wildlife Minimized to Keep Lease Sales on Schedule

LEAKED E-MAILS MAY SINK ARCTIC OFFSHORE LEASE SALES

Officials Scramble to Suppress Scientific Dissent over Bush Arctic Oil Initiative

INVASIVE SPECIES THREAT FROM ARCTIC OFFSHORE DRILLING IGNORED

Interior Purged Scientific Concerns about Introduction of Exotics in Arctic Waters

INTERIOR STIFLES POLAR BEAR PROTECTIONS FROM ARCTIC DRILLING

Listing Delay Blocks Safeguards Urged by Scientists Contrary to Agency Testimony

INTERIOR WITHHOLDING KEY DOCUMENTS ON ARCTIC DRILLING

Shell Plans for LNG and Tanker Traffic in Chukchi Sea Barred from Lease Review

NEW PARK SERVICE POLICY PROMOTES ALASKA INHOLDINGS

Interim Guidance Abandons Acquisition as Tool to Protect Wilderness and Wildlife

ALASKA: THE LAST FRONTIER IS LAST WASTE DUMP

State Pocked by Thousands of Hazardous Waste Sites with Little Monitoring

EPA RELAXES AIR POLLUTION RULES FOR NORTH SLOPE OIL OPERATIONS

Leavitt Asked to Intervene on BP Permit

ALASKA AIR PROGRAM FLUNKS FEDERAL TESTS

EPA Grants Up for Renewal

EPA RIPS BP PERMIT

Feds Echo Concerns of Censored ADEC Employee

ADEC EMPLOYEE DISCIPLINED FOR PROTESTING BP PERMIT

Air Pollution Violations on North Slope Suppressed

NORTH SLOPE REGULATOR RESIGNS

OIL COMPANIES FORCED TRANSFER, SEEKING LENIENT TREATMENT

INDUSTRY RUNS ENVIRONMENTAL AGENCY, EMPLOYEES SAY

Employee Survey Gives Alaska DEC Poor Marks

INTERIOR SECRETARY BLASTED FOR MISLEADING CONGRESS

Groups call for Senate Investigations

SECRETARY NORTON FALSIFIED ARCTIC REFUGE DATA

Misled Congress on Environmental Effects of ANWR Drilling
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