Dear Friends & Neighbors:
Today marks day 95 of session and we are getting closer to adjourning. The State Operating Budget Conference Committee started to meet this week. This is where the House and Senate negotiate the differences in our respective budgets. They have been meeting every day and will continue working until we have a fully funded budget that satisfies both bodies.
On Wednesday, the Legislature concurred on HB 287: APPROP: PUPIL TRANSPORTATION;EDUCATION. Hb 287 flat funds k-12 education at $1.32 billion until FY 20. This ensures school districts can plan ahead and no longer have to send out unnecessary pink slips to their teachers.
Today the House and Senate Officially concurred on HJR 21: FEDS RESPECT STATE MARIJUANA REGS. Below is the press release regarding HJR 21’s passage in the Senate:
HJR 21 has received unanimous support from both bodies. The resolution will now go to the Governor for his signature and then be transmitted to our congressional delegation.
HB 240: PHARMACY BENEFIT MANAGERS was also heard in the Senate Finance Committee today. I would like to thank the many Alaskans who called in to testify about the importance of local pharmacies and lowering pharmaceutical prices. This is an important bill that addresses Alaskans concerns, rising drug costs, and helping our local pharmacies. It was moved out of the committee and will now go to the Senate Floor for a vote.
As always, please feel free to contact my office if you have any questions and concerns. We hope to be home soon.
Proud to Serve District 4: Ester, Goldstream 1 & 2, Steese East/Gilmore, Steese West, and University Hills