This year, more Alaskans than ever before weighed in on the state budget. I appreciate everyone who came out to provide feedback in person at the community meetings held by the House Finance Committee and those who called in to the full committee as they took public testimony here in Juneau. In an effort to pay $3,000 Permanent Fund Dividends, the Governor’s budget proposes taking hundreds of millions of shared taxes from local governments, while simultaneously slashing spending on Medicaid, Senior Benefits and services, K-12 education, University of Alaska, and the Marine Highway. Faced with drastic changes to basic infrastructure and services, Alaskans are making their voices heard. We will do our best to listen and produce a budget that keeps essential services intact.

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Edgmon E-News – March 2 2019

This week, a long-standing goal of mine was realized when we formed the House Special Committee on Tribal Affairs. This is the first time the Alaska Legislature has ever had a committee focused on tribal issues, and it could not come at a better time. As our state faces the most severe budget cuts any Governor has ever proposed, the opportunities for leveraging tribes’ unique government to government relationship with the US Federal Government offer exciting and potentially crucial means of meeting the health, safety, and education needs of rural Alaska communities.

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Rural legislators have a long history of working with members of both political parties in the interest of good governance. We are driven by a long-term commitment to the success and best interests of the state, not political ideology or national parties. I hope we can form a strong majority made up of members from all parties that represents the best interests of all Alaskans.

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