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Corruption Chronicles

Bridge to Nowhere Benefits Representative’s Son-in-Law

Anchorage Daily News reports that the infamous “Bridge to Nowhere” would benefit Representative Don Young’s son-in-law, Art Nelson, who is a partner in Point Bluff, LLC. Rep. Young is the politician who has been trying to build the bridge.

The “Bridge to Nowhere” was given its name by people appalled at the extravagant uselessness of the project. The bridge would connect the town of Ketchikan, Alaska (pop. 8,900) to the island of Gravina (pop. 50) at a cost of $320 million to taxpayers. The Heritage Foundation has described the project as “an embarrassment to the people of Alaska and the U.S. Congress.”

Many across the nation and in Alaska have questioned the benefits of such a project, except perhaps the Point Bluffs partnership:

If a road were built to the land today, it would require about a two-hour commute to downtown Anchorage. But a bridge would change everything. Don Young’s Way would mean a shorter drive to downtown than from the Anchorage Hillside — and make the land much more valuable.

The five-member Point Bluff partnership, of which Nelson has a 10 percent share, was created in December 2002. That was a year before the first, unsuccessful version of Young’s highway bill surfaced with money for the bridge.

If indeed there were any unethical dealings on the part of Don Young, he should be held accountable for them.


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