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This Sunday: Stand up for our Future!
Dear Friends and Neighbors,
It is very important to me that your voice is heard loud and clear in the critical budget discussions our state is having while Governor Dunleavy senselessly tries to tear down everything we have worked to build since statehood, while multinational corporations reap enormous profits from our state-owned oil, and while out-of-state workers benefit from our infrastructure without giving anything back in return.
When the oil companies pumped millions of dollars into advertisements to promote the oil tax giveaway, we were told that our problems would be solved: the pipeline would be full, the state treasury would be solvent, and there would be high paying jobs for all Alaskans.
Years later, none of that has come to pass, and now Governor Dunleavy wants to sell off our infrastructure and our heritage at fire sale prices. He wants to gut our public schools and put thousands of teachers out of work—increasing class sizes to up to 55 students per classroom. He has proposed private out-of-state prisons to take our correctional jobs and separate families with impossible distances while profiting from crime and mental illness. He wants to sell the historic Sheldon Jackson Museum in Sitka and its irreplaceable collection to the highest bidder.
Governor Dunleavy has proposed taking healthcare from tens of thousands of Alaskans, even though it is mostly paid for with our federal tax dollars. He thinks it is a good idea to mothball the state ferries and leave remote communities stranded. He shows no compassion for poverty stricken seniors who receive the pittance that is the senior assistance program, and he is seeking to defund the Pioneer Homes and more than double the rates on hundreds of residents in the final years of their lives.
As unbelievable as this all sounds, this is just the tip of the iceberg of the proposed harm under his leadership.
This unconscionable plan is being put forward under the pretense of higher dividend checks, but what is really happening is that Alaskans are getting cheated out of our constitutional right to benefit fully from the public resource.
It comes as no surprise then that the Governor is now using his office as a mouthpiece for the conservative group “Americans for Prosperity,” putting his name to a series of events they are hosting to promote his reckless and thoughtless budget agenda.
Alaskan citizens will be expected provide identification if they want to attend these “public events,” and they will be prohibited from expressing their views through such means as placards and t-shirts. Further, they will be restricted from using recording devices of any kind.
The Alaska Legislature is responding with a series of genuinely public meetings of its own. Alaskans will not need identification to access the public places where these meetings are being held. The public’s right to free speech will not be suppressed, and people will be allowed to wear whatever clothes and broadcast whatever messages they see fit.
Further, anyone who wants to can record our meetings--just as nearly every legislative meeting is broadcast for the public to see and recorded for posterity.
This Sunday, March 24 from 2-5 pm at the Anchorage Legislative Information Office members of the House Finance Committee will take public testimony on Alaska’s future budget.
Below you will find a link to information about further meetings in Juneau, Ketchikan, the Mat-Su, Bethel, Kenai, Anchorage, Sitka, and Fairbanks that you may wish to share with friends around the state:
Thank you for your time and attention to this pressing matter. As always, please call or email with any thoughts, ideas, or concerns.