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Alaska’s new governor to be sworn in in Kotzebue

JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) – The Latest on (all times local):

10:10 a.m.

A spokeswoman for Alaska Gov.-elect Mike Dunleavy says he’ll be sworn in in the western Alaska city of Kotzebue.

Dunleavy had planned to take the oath of office Monday in the tiny village of Noorvik, where his wife is from.

But spokeswoman Sarah Erkmann Ward says some flights headed to Noorvik were canceled Monday morning because of visibility. Dunleavy was flying on a private charter from Anchorage Monday.

Ward says Dunleavy will be diverted to Kotzebue. She says Lt. Gov.-elect Kevin Meyer is there. She says officials are determining where the swearing in will occur.

9:20 a.m.

Alaska Gov.-elect Mike Dunleavy has a backup plan should his flight to the tiny village of Noorvik not be able to land for his swearing-in ceremony.

Transition spokeswoman Sarah Erkmann Ward says some flights headed to Noorvik from the western Alaska city of Kotzebue were canceled Monday morning because of visibility.

She says others are awaiting word on their flights.

Dunleavy was scheduled to fly from Anchorage to Noorvik Monday on a private charter. Ward says the judge scheduled to swear Dunleavy in is on the flight with him, along with his swearing-in paperwork.

She says the hope is that Dunleavy can land in Noorvik or, as a fall back, in Kotzebue, where some supporters are waiting for flights.

12 a.m.

Alaska Gov.-elect Mike Dunleavy takes office Monday, days after a magnitude 7.0 earthquake rocked heavily-populated south-central Alaska.

Dunleavy initially planned to make a 65-mile (105-kilometer) trek by snowmobile from the western Alaska hub city of Kotzebue to Noorvik for the swearing in. Noorvik is a tiny Inupiat Eskimo village above the Arctic Circle that is his wife’s hometown.

But transition spokeswoman Sarah Erkmann Ward says that would have required an overnight stay in Kotzebue. She says given the earthquake response, Dunleavy decided to abbreviate his trip.

He plans to fly to Noorvik from Anchorage Monday.

It is unusual, but not unprecedented, for an Alaska governor to be sworn in outside the capital city of Juneau.

Dunleavy says he’s been in close contact with Gov. Bill Walker about the emergency response.

AP-WF-12-03-18 1912GMT


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