It is in the best interests of the people of Alaska that government promote equity to whatever extent possible and that government identify and eradicate discriminatory laws and policies wherever they exist. The Alaska Women’s Commission and its predecessor the Alaska Commission on the Status of Women created by the legislature in 1978 and governed by statutes now codified as AS 44.19.165 – 180, has been actively involved in conducting professional research and in identifying problems and solutions to many family and equity-based problems. A majority of the legislature expressed its support for the continuation of the Alaska Women’s Commission and its work. Nonetheless, under AS 44.66.010(a)(12) and (b) the Alaska Women’s Commission will cease existence after June 30, 1988.
Therefore, I, Steve Cowper, Governor of the State of Alaska, under the authority of Article III of the Alaska State Constitution and of AS 44.19.028 order the following:
Section 1. Creation
There is established in the Office of the Governor the Interim Women’s Commission (“the commission”).
Section 2. Composition
The commission consists of nine members and an ex officio member representing the office of the attorney general who all serve at the pleasure of the governor.
Section 3. Appointment
The current members of the Alaska Women’s Commission created by AS 44.19.165 are hereby appointed as the members of the Interim Women’s Commission created by this order. The commission shall elect one of its members as chairperson and may select other commission officers as it considers necessary.
Section 4. Meetings
A majority of the members constitutes a quorum for conducting business and exercising the powers of the commission. The commission shall meet at the call of the chairperson, at the request of a majority of the members, or at a regularly scheduled time as determined by a majority of the members.
Section 5. Terms of Office
The term of office of each member ends on the date of adjournment of the next regular session of the legislature. A vacancy shall be filled for the balance of the unexpired term in the same manner as original appointments to the Alaska Women’s Commission under AS 44.19.167.
Section 6. Compensation
Members of the commission receive no compensation for their services but are entitled to per diem and travel allowances authorized by law for other boards and commissions.
Section 7. Purpose
The purpose of the commission is to improve the status of women in Alaska by conducting research and by making and implementing recommendations on the opportunities, needs, problems, and contributions of women in Alaska including, but not limited to,
(3) civil and legal rights,
(4) labor and employment.
Section 8. Powers and Duties
To accomplish its purpose, the commission may
(1) hire an executive director and additional administrative staff as may be necessary to the commission’s function;
(2) act as a clearinghouse and coordinating body for governmental and nongovernmental information relating to the status of women;
(3) cooperate with public and private agencies in joint efforts to study and resolve problems relating to the status of women in Alaska;
(4) accumulate and compile information concerning discrimination against women;
(5) disseminate the results of research and compilation of data acquired under (4) of this section by publication and other methods such as public hearings, conferences, and seminars;
(6) study and analyze all facts relating to Alaska laws, regulations and guidelines with respect to equal protection for women under the state constitution;
(7) recommend legislative and administrative action on equal treatment and opportunities for women;
(8) select and retain the services of consultants whose advice is considered necessary to assist the commission in obtaining information;
(9) encourage women to utilize their capabilities and to assume leadership roles;
(10) establish standing committees among the members to investigate and make recommendations on various areas of concern;
(11) create task forces composed of commission members and other experts as needed;
(12) accept monetary gifts or grants from the federal government or an agency of it, from any charitable foundation or professional association or from any other reputable sources for implementation of any program necessary or desirable for carrying out the general purposes of the commission;
(13) encourage the development of regional and municipal women’s councils or commissions.
Section 9. Report
The commission shall file a report with the governor and the legislature of its proceedings for the previous calendar year and shall submit recommendations for legislative and administrative action. Reports and recommendations required under this section shall be prepared no later than the convening of the legislature.
Section 10. Duration
The Interim Women’s Commission established by this order remains in existence until the adjournment of the next regular session of the legislature, unless it is extended by legislation.
This order takes effect July 1, 1988, so that there will be no gap between the existing Alaska Women’s Commission created by AS 44.19.165 and the Interim Women’s Commission established by this order.
DATED at Anchorage, Alaska June 23, 1988
By: S/S Steve Cowper
Governor of the State of Alaska