Last week, the first special legislative session called by Governor Dunleavy ended without a decision on the size of this year’s Permanent Fund Dividend (PFD). The governor called a second special session with the PFD as the only agenda item.Read more
It’s an honor to continue serving you as your Representative in the Alaska Legislature.
My priorities are your priorities. That’s why I have been in Juneau since January working to improve public safety, protect the Permanent Fund Dividend (PFD), and pass a prudent and sustainable budget.
Summer is underway in Fairbanks, with many bright and sunny days ahead of us! Meanwhile, the Governor’s Special Session has concluded, and Legislators have headed home from Juneau. I am looking forward to being home more often during this beautiful time of year, but there is unfinished business that the Legislature is working on. Right now, I am serving on a working group made up of four House and four Senate members to explore the history of the Permanent Fund and ask critical questions. We have had only a few meetings so far, but I am optimistic that the conversations will contribute to better decision making for the future of the PFD.Read more
The legislature adjourned, ending this year’s first special session. With funding for the capital budget and the amount of the Permanent Fund Dividend unresolved, the House Majority will continue working and remains committed to finding solutions to address Alaska’s immediate and long-term financial challenges.Read more
Adjusted for inflation and population, the budget is the lowest it has been in 15 years, since 2005. It is a reduction of $190 million from last year. The budget is $4.3 billion in Unrestricted General Funds (UGF) for agency and statewide operations. We did not dip into savings; in fact, we have an approximately $600 million surplus. However, as discussed below, it does not include the dividend. It is now headed to the Governor’s desk. The Capital Budget is still being discussed.Read more
It has been a busy week in Anchorage and in Juneau. Here’s an update on the budget, Permanent Fund, and efforts to clean up our parks and keep Anchorage safe:Read more
We’ve reached the 20th day of the First Special Session and I want to provide an update on where the Legislature stands.Read more
Half of this 30-day special session is over.The big sticking point is the amount and how to pay for this and future Permanent Fund dividends (PFD). Thanks to those who responded to our last newsletter with their thoughts on the dividend. I believe in a “forever dividend.” That means growing our Permanent Fund savings while using some as originally intended: to support public services as oil dollars decline and some for the dividend. Finding that balance is the challenge.Read more