Stories are posted on the APRN news page. You can subscribe to APRN’s newsfeeds via email, podcast and RSS. Follow us on Facebook at alaskapublic.org and on Twitter @aprnListen nowSpicer says feds likely to boost enforcement of anti-marijuana lawsLiz Ruskin, Alaska Public Media – Washington D.C.White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer said today he expects the Department of Justice will step up enforcement of federal marijuana laws. No details yet on how this will affect states that have set up recreational marijuana industries.Alaska sees positive federal signals on individual insurance marketAndrew Kitchenman, KTOO – JuneauThe Walker administration is asking the federal government to take on much of the cost of supporting the individual insurance market. And early interest in the program from the Trump administration is raising its hopes.House Science to EPA: drop Pebble Mine vetoDave Bendinger, KDLG – DillinghamIn a letter Wednesday to new EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt, the chairman of the House Science Committee asked that the agency rescind its 2014 veto of the Pebble Mine. EPA proposed the preemptive Clean Water Act restrictions based on findings from its Bristol Bay Watershed Assessment, and did so with the support of many area tribes, fishermen, and environmental groups.Walker wants Trump on-board the gaslineRashah McChesney, Alaska’s Energy Desk – JuneauThroughout his presidential campaign, Donald Trump pledged to increase the nation’s infrastructure spending. After Trump was elected, Alaska Gov. Bill Walker, sent the new president an infrastructure wishlist from the state. At the top of that list is the state-led $45 billion gasline project.Against the odds, proving solar can power AlaskaRachel Waldholz, Alaska’s Energy Desk – AnchorageAlaska’s solar industry lags behind other states. But with prices dropping dramatically around the world, more entrepreneurs are seeing an opportunity.Alaska Aces hockey team to fold after this seasonJosh Edge, Alaska Public Media – AnchorageThe state’s only professional sports franchise, the Alaska Aces, will fold after this season. The decision was announced Thursday (Feb. 23).New Iditarod two-way communication rules for safety, not advantageZachariah Hughes, Alaska Public Media – AnchorageDuring last year’s Iditarod, an intoxicated snowmachiner struck Jeff King and Aliy Zirkle’s teams on a section of the trail heading into Nulato. And the implications of that event are shaping aspects of this year’s Iditarod.
Preferred Hotels & Resorts has launched a mobile app and member rate program as major enhancements to its points-based hotel rewards program, iPrefer. In celebration of iPrefer and the pursuit of independent travel, Preferred Hotels & Resorts gifted 25,000 bonus points to iPrefer members who made a booking within the app by April 21, 2017.“The new mobile app and member rate program are designed to better connect today’s travellers with the unique appeal of the independent hotel experience through a seamless loyalty program that delivers exclusive, on-the-go access to an attractive rate, points and valuable on-property perks. These enhancements are a testament to our continuous commitment to making iPrefer the most compelling loyalty program for independent-minded travellers,” said, Casey Ueberroth, Chief Marketing Officer, Preferred Hotels & Resorts.“The noteworthy benefits of the iPrefer mobile app and member rate program shall strengthen the rising popularity of the iPrefer program in India, as well as encourage discerning luxury travellers to conveniently book their holidays directly through iPrefer channels for access to competitive rates and valuable benefits upon every stay,” remarked Saurabh Rai, Executive Vice President, Preferred Hotels & Resorts.The app that was built in collaboration with American Express; members can search and book stays at more than 600 iPrefer participating hotels worldwide, access exclusive offers such as member rates and the iPrefer Last-Minute Escapes, update their profiles, view past/upcoming stay history and related points earnings, and immediately access and redeem Reward Certificates.iPrefer members using the app will also receive push notifications regarding special offers, and American Express cardholders will have the ability to enjoy an expedited process through American Express Checkout. In the coming weeks, Preferred Hotels & Resorts will introduce enhanced features for the app such as a concierge chat service that allows guests to communicate directly with the hotel.iPrefer app is available for iOS and Android devices in the Apple App Store and Google Play.