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This spate of legislation in the early 1900s was the beginning of statutory local self-government in Alaska.

Profits from the colony also declined during that period. By 1833, the Russian-American Company had five administrative units known as counters and two districts with a population of 627 Russians, 991 Creoles (or individuals of mixed Native-Russian blood), and 9,120 Natives. New Archangel (Sitka), Kodiak, Unalaska, and Atka in Alaska, and Ross in California, comprised the five counters. The two districts were the Northern, Page 6 including Stuart Island and the settlements on the adjacent mainland of Norton Sound in western Alaska, and Kurile, which was centered on Urup (Alexander) Island in the Kuriles.

Showing its extreme dependence on a single source of revenue, the state budget dramatically ballooned and shrank when oil prices rose and fell globally. A conflict over state spending levels and priorities led to the overthrow of the Democratic leadership in the state house by a coalition of Republicans and Democrats near the end of an especially rancorous legislative session. Following a state court decision that overturned the state's fishing and hunting regulations, which gave preference to rural subsistence users, the state Boards of Fisheries and Game opened subsistence fishing and hunting to all residents, urban and rural.

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