Attorney General of Alaska

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The Attorney General is the principal executive officer of the Department of Law, and is appointed by the governor of Alaska. He or she "serves as the legal advisor for the governor and other state officers, prosecutes all violations of state criminal law, and enforces the consumer protection and unfair trade practices laws."[1]

Current officeholder

The current and 22nd attorney general of Alaska is John J. Burns, appointed by Governor Sean Parnell on November 30, 2010.[2] Before his appointment, Burns was a partner in the law firm Borgeson & Burns in Fairbanks, AL. As the Alaska attorney general serves at the pleasure of the governor, he is not required to be reappointed.

Authority

The attorney general's authority is based in statute, not the state's constitution, which specifies that the attorney general is the "principal executive officer of the Department of Law.[3]

Alaska Statutes, Title 44, Chapter 23, Section 10

The principal executive officer of the Department of Law is the attorney general.

Qualifications

Like all principal executive officers in the Alaska government, the attorney general must "furnish corporate surety bonds in the instance and amount required by law," the cost of which is paid by the state. Otherwise, there are no special qualifications for the office of attorney general.[4]

Appointment

The attorney general, like all Alaska executive department heads, is appointed by the governor and subject to confirmation by a majority of the members of the legislature.[5]

Term limits

There are no term limits for the office of attorney general, who serves at the pleasure of the governor.

Vacancies

Alaska law does not prescribe any particular procedure for dealing with vacancies. It is the governor's responsibility to appoint a new attorney general, subject to approval from the legislature.

Duties

The attorney general oversees the Alaska Department of Law, prosecutes violations of state criminal law, issues legal advice to state officers and agencies and enforces other Alaska statutes. The office's duties are outlined in Alaska statute. They include:[6]

  • Defending the constitution of Alaska and of the United States.
  • Taking action to ensure collection of revenue
  • "[Representing] the state in all civil actions in which it is a party"
  • "[Prosecuting] all cases involving violation of state law"
  • Issuing advisory legal opinion to state officials or legislators
  • "[Drafting] legal instruments for the state"
  • Reporting to the legislature regarding the work of his office and necessary changes to existing law
  • Publishing a pamphlet on landlord and tenant rights.
  • Participating in the Regulatory Commission of Alaska as needed

Contact information

Alaska Department of Law
Post Office Box 110300
Juneau, AK 99811-0300

Phone: 907-465-2133
Fax: 907-465-2075
E-mail: attorney.general@alaska.gov

See also

External links

Alaska Attorney General website

References