Ahtna, Inc. has voted unanimously to endorse Bill Walker (I) for Governor, Mark Begich (D) for U.S. Senate, and Don Young (R) for U.S. House of Representatives. The corporation released the following statement:
“Ahtna, Inc. supports candidates that support our vision, which includes protecting our customary and traditional hunting and fishing practices,” said Ahtna Board Chairman Nick Jackson. “As mandated under the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act, we have a responsibility to our shareholders to provide for their socio and economic wellbeing, and that means doing the best we can to create economic & energy development that benefits them. We want development, jobs, and to lower the cost of energy in our region. Our shareholders are moving to places like Anchorage because they can’t afford the high cost of energy. You simply can’t have economic development without affordable energy. We need leadership in office that understands these points and are willing work with us to provide solutions for those we serve.”
Jackson also added, “This has nothing to do with party affiliation. This is about supporting candidates who support our values and priorities.”
Board endorsements were made based on where candidates stand on Ahtna’s priorities – such as subsistence, tribal wildlife co-management, energy and economic development. The corporation also endorses Alaska House of Representatives Candidates Wilson Justin (D) and Jim Colver (R).