Home Politics Community Politics Alaska Supreme Court: Labor Law Referendum is a Go.

Alaska Supreme Court: Labor Law Referendum is a Go.


labor law referendum is a go - cover

The Alaska Supreme Court decided in favor of Andy Holleman and Jason Alward, two sponsors of the voter referendum seeking to repeal a controversial labor law passed by the Anchorage Assembly last year. While a full opinion will follow, the Court needed only three sentences to grant the sponsors’ motion for summary judgment, paving the way for the referendum to be voted on in April.

The court order was necessitated by an attempt by the Sullivan administration to veto the inclusion of the labor law referendum on the municipal ballot, sparking a disagreement between the city’s attorney, Dennis Wheeler, and the Assembly’s attorney, Julia Tucker.

Provided there are no more shenanigans, this should be the last step in the sordid journey the repeal effort has endured in the months since the law’s passage in March.

However, this is only the first of two decisions needed to end up with the referendum on the April ballot. This first decision clears the hurdle of whether or not AO37 can be voted on by the public. The mayor, and attorney Wheeler, contended that the law was not subject to referendum, as it was an administrative, not legislative, change.

The Court, today, disagreed.

Whether or not the mayor has the power to veto when an item goes before the public for a vote is still looming. That decision is expected any day now.

Much more to come as details emerge.


  1. Unfortunately, I have my doubts that the saga of AO37 will not continue. As always, someone will find a way to mess it up and cause the saga to continue.