by Rep. Zach Fansler
January 19, 2018: Happy New Year and welcome to the start of the 2018 regular legislative session! It has been a great honor to serve my first full year as the State House Representative for District 38 and I look forward to continuing in 2018. I had the opportunity to visit numerous villages in our district and meet with many constituents this year to hear their concerns. My office is already busy putting together a schedule for 2018 so I can visit more villages, have more teleconferences, and continue to keep in touch with tribal and traditional councils, cities, schools, and other interested groups during the 2018 legislative session.
I recognize how difficult it is for our constituents to make it to Juneau during the legislative session so my staff and I want to do everything we can to ensure your voices are heard and you have ways to stay informed as we conduct our work in Juneau. I’m pleased to announce that I will have a staff member located in Bethel during session in 2018, Ben Anderson-Agimuk, to help facilitate communication between our work in Juneau and constituents in District 38. Check out these other ways for you to stay informed throughout the upcoming session:
E-newsletters (email [email protected] to subscribe)
Facebook, Twitter, or my website.
Call or email my office to schedule a phone call update for your group or organization
Listen to KYUK for periodic legislative updates
I would also like to introduce our newest office team member for the 2018 regular session, Ravynn Aklasiaq Nothstine, a First Alaskans Institute policy fellow.
Ravynn is Iñupiaq/Yup’ik born and raised in Anchorage, and her parents are Greg Nothstine and Gloria O’Neill. Her father’s family is from the Native Village of Wales and her mother’s family is from the Native Village of Levelock. Ravynn’s father instilled a fervent sense of culture and Inupiaq identity throughout her life. She was raised Iñupiaq dancing with the Kingikmiut Dancers and Singers of Anchorage. Ravynn’s mother was adamant about education and provided the necessary structure for her success in academics. After graduating from West High School, she attended Dartmouth College in New Hampshire where she spent a majority of her time deeply embedded within the Native community and cultivated her home away from home. She was involved in the Native Americans at Dartmouth, an organization where she served on the executive board during her senior year. Ravynn graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Earth Sciences. Her degree provided a solid foundation for her goal of becoming versed in environmental law and policy.
I’ve already started meeting with people visiting Juneau about legislative business. Mayor Joe Fitka and David Fitka visited our office and Juneau for the first time for the City of Marshall. We discussed many community concerns and already met with the Department of Transportation on a number of items. I look forward to working with them throughout the second session!
The fire that demolished a home in Nunapitchuk a few weeks ago is a wake-up call for us to consider fire safety and recovery plans. If your village is a member of the AVCP Housing Authority, they do hold fire prevention orientation classes and assist with move-ins from disaster. They can be reached at 907.543.3121, and you can go to this site for an emergency voucher assistance program or give them a call for a copy to be mailed to you: http://www.avcphousing.org/pdf/eva_application.pdf
I have also been in touch with the Red Cross of Alaska, and Celia Jackson, a senior disaster services coordinator also informs me that they will take your calls at 907.646.5400.
Stay safe, enjoy the K300 and may all mushers have a safe and great run! Have a good one.
Zach Fansler, Alaska State Representative
District 38 – Bethel