The Senate chambers are seen at the Alaska State Capitol on Friday, May 13, 2022, in Juneau, Alaska. (Photo by James Brooks/Alaska Beacon)
The Alaska Beacon asked Alaska’s legislative candidates to answer a 15-question survey about their positions on a variety of issues. Read all of their responses here. Answers have not been edited.
Arthur Serkov, Alaskan Independence Party candidate from Fairbanks
The Alaska Constitution allows legislators to call a constitutional convention at any time. Are you interested in calling a convention?
Would you be willing to join a coalition majority in which the opposite political party controls a majority of seats?
Should new public employees have access to a pension?
Should the state take over the federal permitting process that regulates construction in wetlands?
Should Juneteenth be a state holiday?
How should the state of Alaska set the amount of the Permanent Fund dividend each year?
A set percentage, defined by the constitution itself, and stop bringing it up into each legislative session. AK congress should have no say in this, that money is the peoples. Perhaps if we can return sub-surface mineral rights to Alaskan citizens like our party tries to, we can simply distribute the entire fund to all citizens in 1 lump sum and be done with it.
What’s the biggest need in your district, and how would you address it?
Property taxes are way too high compared to the services that are provided to the people. So either streamline the borough/state work process (unlikely due to the beurocracy of those who are on the taxpayers teet), OR do my best to simply lower taxes to a bare minimum.
What policies and laws should Alaska follow with regard to abortion?
Alaska should view abortion as murder unless there is a direct medical threat to the mothers life.
How should the state reduce the threat of gun violence and mass shootings?
Facilitate cheaper guns and promote everyone to carry.
How much should a legislator’s faith or religion determine state law and policy?
However much they’d like it to determine their actions. They should be upfront about it with their constituents before being elected though.
What should the state do to improve retention of public employees, including teachers?
Fire everyone that’s above the level of the principals in school, the school psychiatrist, etc. Remove all standardized testing and “no child left behind policies” that criple the teachers ability to teach how they would like to. Then double teachers pays, and completely remove the benefits package which is most of the states education budget. This creates way less oversight burden (and therefore less useless mouths to feed by the taxpayers) and helps teachers make enough of a wage that they can comfortably invest their own money and prosper without all of the “benefits” that they’re offered, whch really only drain our resources. Also this makes teachers lives easier because they can just deal with the parents directly and have basic creative freedom on how to approach teaching students.
What does an ideal state ferry system look like?
It doesnt exist, the state is there to protect the rights of the citizens and to enact justice for them as well as provide basic utilities. If the state ferry system does not facilitate commerce, it shouldnt be paid for by the state, again, not to simply give the state more money, but to facilitate the people of alaska having to pay less taxes.
What, if any, changes does the state need to make to ensure voting is equitable and secure?
Hand counts only.
What do you intend to do about the poor returns of salmon in the Yukon and Kuskokwim drainages, and what are the main causes of the problems?
For this particular question I would consult local universty professors and researchers, as I am not an expert in this field, i would rely on their opinion and do my best to make it a reality.
What constitutional amendments, if any, do you support?
Much like the state of Alaska has chosen to disregard the federal laws on marijuana, I would like the state to disregard the jurisdiction of the Department of Education, the FDA, and a few other departments which have no place messing in our business. It should be up to the people of Alaska how they want their children raised, and it should be up to the people of Alaska to investigate what is and isn’t beneficial to our markets in terms of medicine and food. The FDA’s decisions since COVID times have shown that the Federal government simply has too much power to determine what a state can and cannot do, and my main goal will be to facilitate our state to take as much control from the federal government as possible.
I would of course never touch the IRS’s jurisdiction, since that’s sacrasanct, and the Federal government needs as much aid from the citizens of Alaska as possible.
It’s not that i’m against the Federal government, I am however what it has turned into, vastly overstepping what the US constitution has allowed it to do, and as a state it is our duty to fight for the rights of our citizens, as opposed to simply doing our best to keep the Federal government happy.
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