Rep. Seaton’s End of Session Newsletter

Greetings from your District 31 Representative. It has been a long, tough legislative session. The House and Senate were able to come to a compromise on some items, but there are several key pieces which were not resolved. The decisions the state faces are difficult ones and will affect all Alaskans and our future.

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Rep. LeDoux’s July 21st Newsletter: End of cash credits & adjournment

Late Saturday night, the legislature found compromise and passed HB111, ending cash payments to oil companies. This effort will save the state $150-200 million annually for the next 10 years. These cash payments incentivized exploration and production efforts, but paying the companies cash just didn’t make sense as we try to balance the budget and fill this $2.5’ish billion deficit. Instead, the companies can now recover their costs once fields go into production.

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Note from Rep. Gara: Juneau Update: What I’m Fighting For

As one of 60 legislators, I think we could have finished our work within the 90-day limit. But like negotiating for a car, you can’t just make your offer. You have to get the car salesperson to make a reasonable offer back. That hasn’t happened. The offer so far from our Senate colleagues is:

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Rep. Seaton’s May 22nd Newsletter

Greetings from Juneau on this the 5th day of the first special session of the 30th legislature. There was discussion and some agreement with the Senate majority to extend the session the constitutionally allowed 10 days. The House Minority would not agree to contribute the five additional votes needed for the House to reach the necessary two thirds vote, so the House and Senate adjourned on Wednesday night, the 121st day of session.

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Rep. Wool’s Newsletter: Governor Calls Special Session May 18th

The extended legislative session is over and the House and Senate failed to agree on a fiscal plan. The Senate majority thinks the state should close most of the $2.5 billion deficit this year with a combination of spending cuts to education and using the Permanent Fund’s investment earnings. To close the remaining deficit of about $500 million, the Senate is putting faith in a “drain and pray” plan: drain state savings and pray for higher oil prices or a large production increase. I think this is a very dangerous and irresponsible bet to make.

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NEWS: Lawmakers Must Use the First Special Session to Focus on Alaska’s Fiscal Future

Juneau – The First Regular Session of the 30th Alaska State Legislature ended tonight with clear differences between the Alaska House Majority Coalition and the Alaska Senate Majority on the need for a comprehensive fiscal plan to address the ongoing recession and the $2.7 billion budget gap. Both majority organizations wanted the ten-day extension allowed for in the Alaska Constitution, but the House Republican Caucus refused to provide enough votes in favor. In response, Governor Bill Walker is calling the Alaska Legislature into a Special Session to start on Thursday. 

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