Dept. of Law Squashes ACLU’s SB 54 Allegations
Speaker continues to hold floor sessions for no reasonMonday, November 20, 2017, Eagle River, Alaska –Representative Lora Reinbold (R- Eagle River) is pleased to hear the state clearing up allegations raised about a portion of Senate Bill 54, a bill which increases penalties for law breakers at a time when Alaska needs it most. The Department of Law has stated that the arguments raised against SB 54, have already been defeated through past litigation, therefore the state would prevail if any unnecessary, frivolous constitutional challenges are forthcoming.
For more than a week the American Civil Liberties Union of Alaska have been stirring up talk that a single amendment, put forward by Rep. Reinbold to increase penalties for Class C Felons (like those who steal vehicles, a firearm or sexually assault a minor to the third degree), should prevent SB 54 from becoming law. Sadly, Speaker of the House Bryce Edgmon released a statement echoing the ACLU.
“It’s clear now what is standing between SB 54 becoming law is the ACLU and the Speaker of the House, not my amendment,” said Rep. Reinbold. “SB 54 needs to be signed without delay for it gives important tools back to prosecutors and law enforcement to hold criminals more accountable.”
Since the Senate adopted the House version of SB 54, the Speaker has dug in his heels against progression of the bill by holding unofficial House Floor sessions with the fantasy that work would resume on the bill. His actions were supposedly tied to this idea that SB 54 was flawed but with these recent comments from the Department of Law, it’s clear there is no reason for him to have drug on this special session. The bill needs to be transmitted to the Governor immediately.
“I’m glad the Governor has communicated his intention to sign SB 54 into law. SB 54 makes some needed changes to SB 91 but the work needs to continue next session to strengthen Alaska’s criminal code. There should be no hold up with the Governor signing SB 54,” said Rep. Reinbold.
For more information contact Rep. Reinbold staff Carol Sampson at Carol.Sampson@akleg.gov or Press Secretary Mallory Walser at Mallory.Walser@akleg.gov