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  • The Advocacy Agenda describes our intended areas of focus over the coming year and may be revised or added to as issues emerge. It does not represent all issues pertinent to the Fairbanks business community.




    Lower energy costs have a direct impact on cost of living and operating expenses. Energy plays a crucial role in attracting and retaining businesses, creating a favorable environment for economic growth and development.


    • Support efficient, affordable, and reliable power and heat production for Interior Alaska.


    • Cheap energy helps Alaskans meet federally imposed PM2.5 air quality regulations.


    • Enhanced security and reduce cost for energy along Alaska’s Railbelt grid.


    Alaska is expected to add 5,400 jobs in 2024. There are two job openings for every unemployed individual. Additionally, Alaska’s working-age population decreased by 30,000 between 2013 and 2022.


    • Streamline licensing process for Alaska Division of Corporations, Business, and Professional Licensing.


    • Promote workforce training options such as certificates, endorsements, apprenticeships, pipelines, and professional development.


    • Promote workforce development and partnership opportunities through career and technical education.


    • Promote an educated workforce through post-secondary education, including credential training in high-demand sectors.


  • Economic & Community Development Economic & Community Development

    Fiscal Plans & Budgeting

    • Support responsible, comprehensive, long-term sustainable fiscal plans that fund essential programs and strategic investments that promote long-term economic growth and diversification while balancing revenue against expenses.
    • Oppose new industry-specific targeted taxes at the state and local level, including increases on existing targeted taxes, unless self-imposed by the industry.
    Initiative Process
    • Support reforms to the initiative process to produce better public policy in a comprehensive and balanced manner equally benefiting voters and the legislative process.
    Business and Community Development

    • Support and encourage policies and initiatives that address barriers and facilitate efforts to increase employment opportunities, retain and expand existing businesses, and incentivize entrepreneurs and new businesses to be successful.
    • Support reciprocity of professional licenses for incoming specialists who bring valuable skills to our local economy and address barriers to obtaining occupational licenses in identified areas of need. 
    • Support regulatory updates and licensing improvements to reduce barriers while prioritizing public and worker safety.
    • Support a resilient supply chain, including producing the raw materials and energy necessary to ensure adequate transportation and timely delivery of consumer goods to sustain and grow a healthy economy.
    • Support efforts to stimulate development and re-development opportunities that will foster growth and revitalization throughout the greater Fairbanks area.
    • Support efforts to improve small business’s access to capital.
    • Support efforts to improve availability and access to affordable and cost-effective energy-efficient housing opportunities that meet Alaska’s unique housing needs for military service member families and FNSB residents and the demolition of aged housing stock.
    Arctic Opportunities
    • Support and promote existing and emerging economic opportunities to ensure the Interior is the gateway and forward base of operations for commercial and tourism development in the Arctic while meeting the needs of national and homeland defense.
    Quality of Life
    • Promote the greater Fairbanks area as an attractive place to live, work, and visit.
    • Support community planning efforts to meet the need for public safety and security, quality education, first-rate medical care, transportation, adequate and affordable housing, economic opportunities, diverse leisure, cultural art activities, and meeting spaces.

    Health Care
    • Support efforts to reduce the overall cost of health care that increases access while maintaining strong and vibrant healthcare systems and providers to meet the needs of employees and consumers.
    • Support preventative measures to reduce future threats to public health through a partnership between public and private entities.
    • Improve the balance in workers’ compensation insurance, providing quick, efficient, fair, and predictable delivery of benefits to injured workers at a reasonable cost to employers

    Workforce Development & Education Workforce Development & Education

    Support the University of Alaska

    • Ensure that the University of Alaska Fairbanks (UAF) remains the flagship of the University of Alaska (UA) higher education system and that the Interior remains the home to UA’s system-wide leadership. A vibrant university is vital for the education of our citizenry, the development of a well-trained workforce, and the research necessary to address the state’s critical challenges.
    • Support research, education, engineering, business, and management, including public-private partnerships and intellectual property development, to help grow and diversify the Interior economy
    Workforce Development & Retention
    • Promote workforce training options such as certificates, endorsement, apprenticeships, pipelines, and professional development in all workforce sectors through UAF, UAF Community & Technical College, the Fairbanks North Star Borough School District, and industry partners.
    • Promote workforce development and partnership opportunities through career and technical education at all grade levels and concurrent (dual) enrollment in high school and post-secondary programs. 
    • Promote an educated workforce through post-secondary education, including credential training in high-demand sectors to support recruitment, advancement, and retention.
    Underlying Systemic Needs
    • Support efforts to develop, attract and retain future employees to meet the economic and social needs of Interior Alaska through quality learning opportunities from preschool through post-high school.
    • Support expanding essential modern resources such as internet connectivity, effective reading programs, and higher education funding that supports a return on investment to businesses and the community.
    • Support timely budget approval at all levels of government to provide education funding that promotes consistency of personnel, supports continuity of programs, and acknowledges the high fixed costs of delivering education in Alaska.
    • Support other solutions that provide accessible and affordable childcare options in the Interior
    Business Partnerships
    • Connect, recognize, and support businesses that provide work-based opportunities, training, and feedback mechanisms to fill unique niches and meet the evolving needs of the future.
    • Support and encourage efforts to enhance financial literacy in the Interior.
    • Support family-friendly workplaces, including providing childcare options.
    • Celebrate, promote, and expand research collaboration with Interior businesses that support economic development, resiliency, and quality of life in Alaska communities and retain UA graduates
    K-12 Education
    • Support efforts that promote an affordable, modern, high-quality education that establishes career paths that lead to jobs and contribute to changing workforce skillset demands to meet the needs of local businesses and industries.

    Energy, Natural Resources, & Environment Energy, Natural Resources, & Environment

    Responsible and Sustainable Resource Development
    • Support the responsible development and balanced management of Alaska’s natural resources, including minerals, wildlife, forestry, and agricultural products, while managing Alaska’s environment for future generations.
    • Support long-term and stable fiscal, regulatory, and tax policies that minimize cost-prohibitive investment in energy and natural resources.
    • Support state and federal regulations and effective permitting processes that promote timely and responsible exploration, development, infrastructure, research, and production.
    • Promote the Interior’s role in autonomous recycling efforts in Alaska.
    • Support the development of a North Slope natural gas project that will provide competitive gas for in-state consumption and exports to foreign markets.
    • Support legislation that maintains state sovereignty of mineral taxation and prohibits local authorities from instituting a dual tax.
    • Support efforts to explore and develop rare earth and critical minerals found in Alaska.
    • Support emerging technologies that can help facilitate Alaska’s resources’ development, inclusive of all industries.
    Affordable Energy
    • Support efforts to provide natural gas to Interior Alaska at the lowest cost possible as soon as possible.
    • Support efficient, affordable, and reliable power and heat production for Interior Alaska.
    • Promote home and business energy audits and weatherization programs.
    Food Security
    • Support efforts to increase food production and harvesting to achieve greater food security.
    • Support infrastructure that can help facilitate agricultural production and encourage in-state consumption of Alaska-sourced foods. 
    • Support the elimination of barriers for businesses in getting their Alaska-grown or Alaska-sourced products into the Alaska market.

    Military Affairs Military Affairs

    Military Development and Operations

    • Promote the importance of the Arctic to U.S. national and homeland security and the obvious strategic location for the expansion of Coast Guard, Navy, and Space Force missions in the Arctic. 
    • Support efforts to secure and expand military roles and missions on all Interior military installations, including Eielson Air Force Base, Clear Space Force Station, Fort Wainwright, Fort Greely, and the Joint Pacific Alaska Range Complex.
    • Support community-compatible land-use and air space proposals, the basing of additional assets in the Interior, maintenance upgrades and expansions of facilities, the Air National Guard aerial refueling tanker aircraft upgrade, and similar initiatives.
    • Promote military/community partnership programs with private businesses. 
    • Support the use of local contractors for federal military projects
    Service Members & Families
    • Support efforts that improve the quality of life for service members, families, and veterans in the Interior, acknowledge their specialized needs and facilitate community connections.
    • Assist veterans, retirees, transitioning service members, military spouses, National Guard members, and Reserve Component members in securing employment and education opportunities.
    • Support Interior National Guard and Reserve activities and efforts that honor our hometown heroes.
    • Urge local and state governments to swiftly implement practical solutions to the shortage of suitable housing for current and incoming service members by leveraging existing policies and programs while pushing for creative solutions to support current and future investors to support the buildup of Alaska military installations. 

    Transportation & Infrastructure Transportation & Infrastructure

    Transportation and Infrastructure Support

    • Support reliable revenue for Alaska’s motorized and non-motorized transportation systems by:

      • pursuing full access to federal match dollars for Alaska’s Department of Transportation and Public Facilities and timely funding of the state capital budget.

      • maintaining existing infrastructure and ensuring functionality in the face of deferred maintenance and impacts from climate change.

      • developing improvement projects and new infrastructure to enhance safety, access, mobility, maintenance capabilities, and economic benefits.

      • Securing viable, long-term solutions for the Federal Highway Trust Fund and the Federal Airport & Airway Trust Fund.

      • increasing the Alaska motor fuel tax to better support essential transportation systems throughout the state.

      • maintaining the current funding level for the Fairbanks Area Surface Transportation Planning (FAST Planning), despite establishing a third Metropolitan Planning Organization in the state.

      • creating a state-funded Alaska Transportation Infrastructure program.

    • Fund and manage DOT&PF’s maintenance & operations budget for more adequate service levels for motorized and non-motorized users, including safe, operational airports, maintenance of pathways leading to transit stops, roadway freight movement, and emergency response efficacy.

    • Support changes to DOT&PF’s recruitment and retention processes to ensure an adequate workforce to maintain Alaska’s transportation infrastructure on land, air, and water.

    • Support public and private efforts to expand broadband infrastructure to support business, government, and education.

    Transportation Hub

    • Enhance Fairbanks as the air, road, and rail transportation hub for Interior and Northern Alaska. 

    • Support responsible development of transportation resources such as airports, roads, parking, and public transit to improve access to economic points of interest.

    • Support the planning, design, improvement, development, and financing efforts for a modern, safe and reliable strategic Port system, including harbor and waterfront infrastructure in Alaska, and railway extension to Canada, as a means to support statewide prosperity, commerce, economic development, sustainability, resiliency and national defense missions in Alaska, the Arctic, and the Pacific Rim.

    Stakeholder, Community & Agency Engagement

    • Monitor state and federal budgeting to ensure infrastructure projects receive adequate consideration and are responsibly addressed.

    • Support timely Federal and State agency permitting reviews.

    • Encourage the active pursuit of efficiencies in developing, permitting, and delivering maintenance and capital programs.

    • Support a more robust public outreach effort for community involvement while developing the State Transportation Improvement Program and other transportation plans.

    • Enhance the functionality of Alaska’s transportation systems through interagency cooperation to improve winter access, sanitation, and roadside appeal in design, construction, and maintenance considerations on all numbered highways.

    • Support establishment, statute codification, and use of transportation and infrastructure Advisory Boards as a mechanism for dialogue with key stakeholders.