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Congressman Don Young Speaks at the AFN Convention

Don Young

The most senior member of Alaska’s congressional delegation addressed the delegates to the Alaska Federation of Natives convention in Fairbanks on Friday. Congressman Don Young’s speech was short and prerecorded. Young stressed the importance of increasing the numbers of game species like moose and caribou in Alaska.

“We have to increase the numbers. I’ve been trying to convince people within the state to look at producing more animals because as the population increases there is a need to have more animals available if we are to use them as a food substitution.”

Young called on the Alaska Native Corporations to begin to manage their lands to increase game numbers and he noted that he’s working on legislation to set up a pilot program in Alaska. During Friday’s prerecorded speech Young noted that he could not travel to Alaska because of pending debates in Congress including funding for the SNAP Program, which is better known by its old name… Food Stamps.

“I voted to fund the snap program. I fought for it on the floor of the House and voted against the Republican leadership.”

The SNAP program is facing some cuts. The plan being debated in the House calls for a $4-billion dollars cut while the plan supported by the leadership in the Senate is only calling for a cut of $400-million. If Congress does not act the program will fact a $5-billion dollars cut based on an across the board 15-percent cut. That across the board cut is scheduled to go into effect in November.