By BECKY BOHRER Associated Press
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A disaster declaration intended to aid Alaska’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic is set to expire this weekend unless action is taken to extend it. Health and emergency officials warn a failure to extend it could restrict the state’s ability to distribute vaccines and set back progress in combating the illness. Three weeks into the legislative session, the politically divided House has yet to organize. Members of the Republican-led Senate have chafed at Gov. Mike Dunleavy’s proposal for an extension through September. They say they are looking at whether they can provide the tools Dunleavy needs to respond separate from a declared disaster.