Associated Press

FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — An online fundraising effort that took in $6,110 to pay medical expenses of a Fairbanks girl was taken down after the website creator said she learned the girl was not sick.

Alaska State Troopers are investigating the fundraising, which saw 80 people donate to a cancer recovery fund on a GoFundMe page, the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reported (


JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — With just days left in the legislative session, the state House is set to consider a bill that would make sweeping changes to Alaska’s criminal justice system.

The state Senate on Saturday approved a measure that moves away from tough-on-crime programs that have been a staple of Alaska’s criminal sentencing structure since it gained statehood.

HELENA, Mont. (AP) — Move over, Judge Judy Alaska’s mama grizzly is getting a gavel.

A production company spokesman says former Gov. Sarah Palin has signed a deal to make a pilot for a reality courtroom TV show.

Warm Springs Productions spokesman Howard Bragman said Tuesday that the company will use the pilot to try to find a buyer to air the show five days a week starting in fall 2017.

Bragman says Palin is a natural for the role because she’s telegenic and not afraid to give her opinion. She has no legal training.

NOME, Alaska (AP) — Dallas Seavey did more with less this year at the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race.

He set a record pace early Tuesday morning when he won his third straight Iditarod and fourth race in the last five years. And he did it with just six dogs, after starting the race nearly 1,000 miles across Alaska with 16.

No other musher this year has fewer dogs.

And the record Seavey beat? It was the one he set in 2014, when he brought only seven dogs into Nome.

WILLOW (AP) — Eighty-five mushers set off Sunday to conquer the toughest terrain this nation has to offer, vying to become the first to reach Alaska’s western coast with their dog teams.

Scott Janssen, an undertaker from Anchorage who is known as the Mushing Mortician, was the first to leave across Willow Lake in the staggered started.

Dallas Seavey was only wearing a long-sleeved shirt as he packed his sled under blue skies and warm temperatures. He said it felt just like another day for him and his dogs, doing their thing.

JUNEAU (AP) — Gov. Bill Walker on Tuesday appointed Ivy Spohnholz to fill the state House seat vacated when Anchorage Democratic Rep. Max Gruenberg died last month, saying Spohnholz will be a “worthy successor.”

Spohnholz was one of three finalists for the job whose names were sent to Walker for consideration by Anchorage Democrats. The other two were Taylor Brelsford and Kendra Kloster.

By law, the appointee must be a member of the same political party as the predecessor, and in this case, would be subject to confirmation by House Democrats.

JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz won the Republican presidential preference poll in Alaska late Tuesday, edging national GOP front-runner Donald Trump.

Trump had come into the contest with the endorsement of former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin. U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio finished third in Alaska.

JUNEAU (AP) — A regulatory board in Alaska on Feb. 24 began accepting applications for marijuana business licenses — the next step in setting up the state’s legal pot industry.

Leif Abel has the date marked on his calendar. He and his partners have been building a facility on the Kenai Peninsula for their company, Greatland Ganja. To apply for a license, prospective business operators need to have secured a site.

That has proven to be a challenge in some parts of the state due to location and zoning restrictions, local community bans or wary property owners.

JUNEAU, Alaska — The Senate Judiciary Committee examined legislation on Monday aimed at boosting enforcement of Alaska’s ban on texting while driving.

It would reduce the penalty for driving while texting without causing an injury from a misdemeanor to a violation, making it possible for officers to issue citations to distracted drivers. Stiffer penalties would remain in cases involving injury or death.

Grocery stores in Alaska are running low on some foods after a cargo ship was delayed by a mechanical issue.

Tote Maritime Alaska’s North Star, which regularly ships groceries and other goods between Tacoma and Anchorage, was supposed to leave Jan. 14 and arrive on Jan. 17. A problem was discovered shortly before its departure.

Tote Maritime Vice President Grace Greene couldn’t say specifically what the mechanical issue was, but said the North Star is expected to be fixed by early next week.