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Chickaloon Tribal Police Department Special Commissions

May 2, 2024 (Anchorage, AK) – Today Alaska Department of Public Safety Commissioner James Cockrell released the following statement regarding the issuance of State of Alaska Special Commissions to the Chickaloon Tribal Police Department.
“After receiving hundreds of comments from across the Matanuska Susitna Valley, I have decided to not move forward with issuing special commissions to the Chickaloon Tribal Police Department. My team and I received a significant amount of feedback from community members which demonstrated continued community consultation and relationship building is needed before special commissions can be considered. Without public trust, policing in any community would be nearly impossible. DPS will continue to work with tribes across the state to improve public safety outcomes for Alaska’s first people.” 
This decision does not impact any of the inherent criminal justice authority held by tribal governments or currently delegated to tribal governments by the federal government.
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Joint Traffic Safety Operation Nets Hundreds of Contacts with Alaska Drivers

April 26, 2024 (Anchorage, AK) – On April 20, 2024, the Alaska State Troopers, Alaska Wildlife Troopers, Anchorage Police Department, Wasilla Police Department, and Palmer Police Department conducted a six-hour high visibility traffic enforcement operation across southcentral Alaska focused on speeding on Alaska’s highways. During the special operation law enforcement conducted 405 traffic stops and contacted 526 drivers and passengers for speeding and other unsafe driving behavior. Officers also arrested three drivers for driving under the influence, issued 271 citations, and 171 warnings.
“Just because Spring has started to arrive across much of the state, does not mean that drivers can drive over the posted speed limit or in a manner that is unsafe for conditions,” said Colonel Maurice Hughes, Director of the Alaska State Troopers. “Your Alaska State Troopers will continue to work with our local law enforcement partners to ensure that Alaskans are driving safely and legally across the state. Far too many Alaskans die each year due to speeding, driving under the influence, or carelessness behind the wheel – and we will continue to enforce Alaska’s traffic laws to do our part to discourage this behavior.”
Each Spring as Alaska’s roads begin to dry out after Winter, many Alaskans begin driving faster than posted speed limits and in a manner that is unsafe for conditions at any time of year. In 2021 there were 12,330 speeding-related fatalities in the United States, an increase of 8% from the 11,428 fatalities in 2020. Speeding was a contributing factor for 29% of fatalities in motor vehicle collisions in the United States in 2021, the highest percentage since 2013.
This enforcement initiative was funded by a grant from the Alaska Highway Safety Office.

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2024 Studded Tire Removal Deadline Extended

April 15, 2024 (Anchorage, AK) – Today Alaska Department of Public Safety Commissioner James Cockrell issued an emergency order extending the statutory deadline to remove studded tires from vehicles operating on Alaska roadways for areas north of the 60° North Latitude line. Due to extended winter weather conditions across much of the southcentral and interior Alaska, the order was issued to ease the burden of Alaskans and ensure drivers can safely operate their vehicles during the extended winter season.
“Many parts of Alaska are experiencing prolonged winter weather after a near record setting snow season that has extended icy road conditions well into April,” said Commissioner Jim Cockrell. “This 15-day extension for the studded tire removal deadline will provide additional time to switch to regular tires without compromising safety.”
Alaskans living above the 60° North Latitude line, including all portions of the Sterling Highway, may use studded tires on Alaska roadways until May 15, 2024.
Latitude 60° crosses Alaska from east to west, just south of Prince William Sound, Seward, and Chefornak.
Alaskans living below the 60° North Latitude line, including Southeast, the Aleutian Chain, Southwest Alaska, and Kodiak, will use the deadline established in statute of April 15, 2024.
A copy of the emergency order can be found here.
Some municipalities or boroughs may have their own regulations surrounding studded tires in their jurisdiction.
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