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Monday, May 18, 2009

May 18, 2009 Synopsis of Governor Palin's Latest Accomplishments

Following is synopsis of Governor Palin's accomplishments since April 30, 2009. Complete stories are at http://sarahs-accomplishments.blogspot.com.

Governor Palin on May 15, 2009 directed the state Department of Law to file "a supplemental brief with the United States Supreme Court supporting development of the Kensington Mine near Juneau." The mine employs over 400 people, half of whom are Alaskan Natives and earn over $80,000 per year.

Governor Palin signed legislation that will give struggling charter schools a one-year grace period to increase enrollments or integrate with other charter schools. She also signed legislation that authorizes Alaska "to enroll in the Interstate Compact on Educational Opportunity for Military Children."

The Governor defended Miss California Carrie Prejean's free speech rights in a statement released on the SarahPAC site.

Governor Palin addressed the Interstate Oil & Gas Compact Commission which she chaired at one time; and expressed encouragement about the US Department of the Interior's move on off-shore drilling.

Alaska state employees -- who ultimately report to Governor Palin -- were responsible for mediating a long-standing dispute between the Chugach Electric Association and ConocoPhillips. That dispute had been litigated all the way the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals -- the final court after that would have been the US Supreme Court.

Alaska Governor Sarah Palin will be honored at an Independent Group Home Living (IGHL), Inc. Gala at the Flowerfield in St. James, NY Sunday June, 7, 2009 from 5 PM till 9 PM. Tickets are $125 per person or $1250 for a table of 12. To reserve your space or to request more information about the gala, contact Frank Lombardi, Assistant to the CEO, 631-878-8900 ext. 102, or e-mail him at flombardi@ighl.org.

Governor Palin signed a book deal with Harper Collins and its subsidiary Zondervan to write an auto-biography, which is expected to go on sale in spring 2010.

Governor Palin won four victories regarding ethics complaints. One complaint pertained to an interview Governor Palin gave upon her return from the 2008 POTUS campaign, and the other pertained to when she stumped for Senator Saxby Chambliss. The complaints pertaining to her Indiana visit and SarahPAC, as well as an older complaint regarding spoken content on a ballot measure were both summarily dismissed.
The dismissals bring to 11 out of 14 the number of ethics complaints adjudicated in the Governor's favor and leave three still pending.

Governor Palin conducted site surveys/field visits in Alaska's interior which was subjected to ice jam flooding. She had declared a disaster in the affected region to mobilize funds and resources to get these communities back on their collective feet. The latest blog entry on the subject contains four photos of the Governor's visit to Ft. Yukon and Eagle.

Following enforcement of contracts with the state, ExxonMobil began drilling at Point Thomson -- the first well drilled there in 26 years, fulfilling a state goal to develop oil and gas resources there.

Governor Palin spoke out against the Obama administration's budget cuts to Alaska's missile defense system, a clean water program, and a program which helps the poor in distressed communities.

This item was not published in the mainstream media and was not a gubernatorial press release, but came from a supporter of the Governor's. Emma Macpherson, 15 of Evanston, IL, won an executive board seat on her student council using campaign methodologies similar to Governor Palin's and attributing her inspiration to the Governor.

Former US Attorney Wev Shea wrote a letter to the editor taking the position that the State of Alaska is responsible to defend Governor Palin against ethics complaints -- that she should be having to do this at her own expense.

Governor Palin made seven appointments/re-appointments to boards during the last week. She appointed 46 people to boards, councils, and commissions this year, excluding two judicial appointments and one state Senate appointment.

Governor Palin signed legislation granting birth certificates for stillborn babies.

While taking a trip to Haines and her childhood home of Skagway, Governor Palin signed legislation authorizing the state to fund retirement benefits for Alaska Territorial Guard veterans. The federal government ceased funding benefits on April 1, 2009. Just prior to the trip, Governor Palin was visited by a customized Hummer built as a "rolling war memorial" honoring fallen Marines.

Photos of Governor Palin on the Job for Military Families

GrizzlyBarb has some awesome photos of Governor Sarah Palin's visit to Aurora Elementary School as she signed a bill that helps the children of military personnel adjust to new schools when they have to move. Please visit the site to view them all. The photo above is from the governor's website.

Below is Governor Sarah Palin's press release on the signing of the legislation. Thanks, Governor Palin and the Alaska Legislature, for reaching out to help these kids.

May 15, 2009, Anchorage, Alaska - Governor Sarah Palin today signed two bills into law that will provide a grace period for charter schools experiencing decreased enrollment and authorize the state to enroll in the Interstate Compact on Educational Opportunity for Military Children.

“It is so important Alaska’s parents have opportunities to choose what's best for their children’s education,” Governor Palin said. “I appreciate the hard work of all the legislators who spearheaded these bills from introduction to final passage.”

Senate Bill 57, sponsored by Senator Joe Thomas, provides a one-year grace period for charter schools and alternative schools experiencing a decline in enrollment that would make them ineligible for “separate school” status. The legislation also lowers the separate-school threshold for alternative schools from 200 to 175.

Separate schools are funded at a higher level, over $500,000, to accommodate the additional expenses involved. A charter school that had enrollment drop below 150 students, or an alternative school with an enrollment decrease to below 175 students, would receive 95 percent of the funding formula provided to a separate school for one year. This would allow that school an opportunity to make arrangements to increase enrollment, integrate with another school or close.

Charter schools are public schools open to all children, free of charge. They must comply with state laws governing public schools, and they employ state-certified teachers. Charter schools are managed by a parent-elected board of directors that determines the school’s curriculum and teaching methods, within the guidelines of state statutes. Governor Palin signed SB 57 at Academy Charter School in Palmer.

House Bill 137, sponsored by Representative John Coghill, allows Alaska to join other states in an interstate compact intended to develop uniform rules that provide for the educational needs of military dependents. The compact eases enrollment, portability and acceptance of school transcripts and other education records, student class placement, and on-time graduation, and allows collaborative information-sharing among state educational systems. Governor Palin signed HB 137 at Aurora Elementary School on Elmendorf Air Force Base.