I, Mike Dunleavy, Governor of the State of Alaska, under the authority of Article III, Sections 1 and 24 of the Constitution of the State of Alaska, and in accordance with AS 44.19.145(c), issue Administrative Order 324 to establish the Governor’s Advisory Council on Opioid Remediation.
The opioid epidemic has affected countless lives in Alaska and around the country. The impact of the epidemic compelled many states and United States territories to sue several distributors and manufacturers of prescription opioids. As settlements are reached and lawsuits conclude, the State of Alaska anticipates receiving multi-year payments from several manufacturers and distributors. These payments may start as soon as 2022 and are likely to continue over the next two decades. The establishment of the Governor’s Advisory Council on Opioid Remediation will provide an efficient and transparent way to engage Alaskans statewide regarding the management and allocation of opioid abatement funds.
COMPOSITION AND OFFICERS OF THE COUNCIL
The Governor’s Advisory Council on Opioid Remediation consists of 13 members. Nine voting members are appointed by the Governor, five who are representative of local governments. These members serve at the pleasure of the Governor. Two non-voting, ex-officio members are appointed by the Speaker of the House and two non-voting, ex-officio members are appointed by the Senate President. The appointments must represent at least one member from the majority caucus and one member from the minority caucus in each house.
The five local government members shall serve staggered three-year terms, provided the initial terms are consistent with AS 39.05.055(3). No local government member may serve more than two consecutive terms, though a local government member may serve more than two terms if they have not served on the Council for the preceding three years. Ex-officio members shall serve two-year terms, unless otherwise provided by the Speaker of the House or the President of the Senate respectively.
The Advisory Council may annually select a vice-chair from among the voting members of the Advisory Council.
Aside from the ex-officio legislative members, the Governor’s Advisory Council on Opioid Remediation shall consist of the following:
- One member who is the Director of Public Health or the director’s designee, who will serve as the Chair of the Advisory Council.
- One member who is the Commissioner of the Department of Revenue or the commissioner’s designee.
- One member who is the Chair of the Mental Health Trust Authority or the chair’s designee.
- One member who is representative of the leadership of an organization that monitors health policy issues at the federal and state levels that affect Alaska Native people or their designee.
- Five members who are local government officials that collectively represent Alaska’s geographically, economically, and demographically diverse municipalities.
DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES
By December 1 of each calendar year, the Advisory Council shall deliver a report to the Commissioner of the Department of Health and Social Services, including
- Input and recommendations regarding how to manage and allocate opioid remediation funds.
- Recommendations for a process, or improvements to the process, for receiving input from communities regarding remediation strategies and responses to their specific opioid remediation needs.
- Recommendations to implement efficient, evidence-based approaches to opioid remediation statewide.
Within three months after receiving the Advisory Council’s annual report, the Commissioner shall deliver a report to the Advisory Council on the status of the recommendations set forth in the report. The Commissioner shall notify the Office of the Governor and the Advisory Council in writing if the Department disagrees with an Advisory Council recommendation. The Commissioner may extend the time allowed to respond based upon administrative necessity by providing written notice to the Advisory Council.
The Governor’s Advisory Council on Opioid Remediation is assigned to the Department of Health and Social Services for administrative support.
Consistent with law and available appropriations, the Department of Health and Social Services shall provide administrative support for the Advisory Council using existing personnel and monetary resources. The Advisory Council shall coordinate with the Department for the use of personnel and consultants with respect to advisory matters to be considered and to accomplish the purposes of this order. Consistent with available staff and other priorities, the Department shall work to timely submit data and information requested by the Advisory Council. If the Department disagrees with an Advisory Council request for assistance, the Commissioner shall timely notify the Advisory Council in writing the reasons why the resources, or requested data or information, were not provided.
Advisory Council members receive no compensation or other remuneration from the State as members of the Advisory Council. Members of the Advisory Council who are not state or federal employees are entitled to per diem and travel expenses in the same manner permitted for members of state boards and commissions. Per diem and travel expenses for members of the Advisory Council who are representatives of a state or federal agency are the responsibility of that agency.
The Advisory Council may create advisory-only subcommittees.
The Advisory Council shall meet quarterly at a time and place determined by the Chair and at other times as the Chair considers necessary. The Advisory Council and its subcommittees may use teleconferencing and other electronic means, to the extent practicable, in order to gain maximum public participation at minimum cost.
A majority of the Advisory Council’s voting members constitutes a quorum for conducting business. The Council shall establish procedures for voting and meetings of the Council. Proxy voting is not permitted. Meetings of the Advisory Council, or any subcommittees thereof, shall be conducted, and notice of meetings provided, in accordance with AS 44.62.310 – 44.62.319 (Open Meetings Act).
Records of the Advisory Council and all subcommittees are subject to inspection, copying, and distribution as public records under AS 40.25.110 – 40.25.220.
This Order takes effect immediately.
Dated this 1st day of October, 2021.