Alaska has a great opportunity with U.S. Interior Secretary Deb Haaland visiting this month.
Haaland is expected to be here the week of April 17. Her visit will include Anchorage, Fairbanks and King Cove, the latter because the village is seeking an 11-mile road extension through the Izembek National Wildlife Refuge.
The Biden administration supports the extension, and this visit will give Haaland a look at that area in addition to introducing her to Alaskans concerned with issues of import that the Department of Interior oversees.
Haaland will be meeting leaders at all government levels, as well as stakeholders and Interior employees. More than 2,500 Alaskans are employed by the department.
She says that she will be highlighting "the millions of dollars available in federal investments for the state," as a result of the $1.2 trillion Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and the $2.5 trillion Omnibus Appropriations package.
She adds that she will be speaking about how dollars from these two pieces of legislation can assist Alaska and its communities in rebuilding their economies.
Whenever cabinet level executives in the federal government come to Alaska to see the state and meet with Alaskans, it increases the likelihood of better relations. The feds begin to develop experience with Alaska, and not only through talks with elected officials visiting Washington, D.C. Such visits are helpful, but not equally effective.
Haaland isn't scheduled to stop in this region of the state on her visit. But, perhaps, once she begins to know Alaska, she will be so inclined.
She certainly is welcome.