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Tue Jun 30, 2020, 08:02 AM

Dunleavy administration issues illegal permit for American flag on Flattop Mountain in closed door

Dunleavy administration issues illegal permit for American flag on Flattop Mountain in closed door meeting to Republican State Legislator


As scores of Alaskans prepare to climb Alaska’s most climbed peak this Saturday June 20 to celebrate the summer solstice — Flattop Mountain in Chugach State Park east of Anchorage — they will come face-to-face with yet another abuse of power and public process by the Dunleavy administration — an illegally permitted American flag on the summit.

It was just disclosed that the Dunleavy administration’s Department of Natural Resources (DNR), in a closed, non-noticed meeting between DNR senior officials and a Republican State legislator, issued the legislator a permit, in violation of state policy, to place a permanent American flag on the summit of Flattop in the state park. Rep. Laddie Shaw (R, Anchorage) requested the permit to place the permanent flag atop Flattop, which the Park Superintendent had (correctly) previously denied.

The closed meeting (almost certainly a violation of the state’s Open Meetings Act) was held in 2019 between three state officials — DNR Deputy Commissioner Brent Goodrum, CSP Superintendent Kurt Hensel, and Rep. Shaw — at which the Deputy Commissioner overruled the Superintendent Hensel’s previous denial of the permit, and ordered the Flattop flag permit application be approved, without public notice or process. The superintendent had previously (correctly) denied the permit, as permanent flags are not permissible in state parks under long-standing state policy.

But instead of abiding state policy and public process, the Dunleavy administration directed (bullied) the park superintendent to issue the permit, and the flag has been there, illegally, ever since. This shady backroom deal is just one more example of good-old-boy politics at their worst.

Read more: https://www.anchoragepress.com/columnists/dunleavy-administration-issues-illegal-permit-for-american-flag-on-flattop-mountain-in-closed-door-meeting/article_813133b2-b17e-11ea-aab5-b31b3e489139.html

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