Petersburg’s lobbyist in Juneau is looking forward to the new legislative session, which starts Tuesday. The Petersburg City Council first hired Ray Matiashowski in 2007. Since then, the community has received millions of dollars in legislative appropriations to complete local projects, including the fire hall, the library, and the North Harbor.

Southeast will have less representation this year. Redistricting meant the loss of a senator and a house member. The two Senators that remain, Juneau Democrat Dennis Egan and Sitka Republican Bert Stedman, have joined the new republican-led majority. However, they no longer have seats on the powerful Finance Committee. The two had been members of a bi-partisan coalition of ten democrats and six republicans last session. This session, the majority includes 13 republicans and two democrats.

On Friday, Matt Lichtenstein asked Matiashowski what effect the shift in legislative leadership could mean for Southeast. Along with Petersburg, Ray Matiashowski also lobbies for the City and Borough of Ketchikan and the Southeast Alaska Power Agency as well as a few corporate clients.

Alaska’s new legislature convenes Tuesday.

Ray Matiashowski