Torgerson takes his hat out of the ring for State Senate race

Posted: Tuesday, March 05, 2002

Sen. John Torgerson, R-Kasilof, told the Soldotna Chamber of Commerce last week that he will not be seeking re-election to the state senate seat that he has held for eight years.

"Basically, eight years is long enough. It took some discussion with my family and wife, but we decided that it was best not to seek re-election," said Torgerson. He will continue to serve his district until the end of his term in January of next year. Torgerson's short-term plans are to help get Frank Murkowski elected governor and Gail Phillips Lt. Governor in November, "Other than that all options are open as far as my career is concerned," added Torgerson.

With so much of the legislature having to stand for re-election due to re-apportionment, Torgerson doesn't expect any major changes to come out of the current session. He hopes that the legislature will at least inflation proof education funding which would mean about a three- percent increase in state funding. Regarding the progress of major projects like a Trans-Alaska Gasline, Torgerson who chairs the Joint Committee on Oil & Gas said, "We're waiting for markets to come back together. Clearly, I've put together one of the best pipeline teams ever assembled, with economists, in-state experts, as well as experts coming out of Washington D.C. and it all comes down to when the market is right. When the market gets right the pieces will start fitting together, but it's not quite there yet."

During his two terms, Torgerson authored 21 pieces of legislation that became law, including one that came as a result of K-Beach elementary school students to name the moose the official Alaska State Mammal.

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