Rep. Claman’s Newsletter: House Focuses on Budget

Claman's Alaska Matters

The House voted this week to suspend non-budget related committee hearings. This move allows us to focus on budget topics. Budget subcommittee meetings have been extended and the House Finance Committee is meeting daily. Yesterday, the Finance Committee hosted a “Budget 101,” which is a helpful resource to understanding budget documents. I will keep you as informed as possible as we go through the next few weeks on opportunities for public testimony and other community events.

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NEWS: Reps. Gruenberg and Claman Praise Today’s Bold and Inspirational State of the Judiciary Address

Rep. Matt Claman

Juneau – Today, Alaska Supreme Court Chief Justice Craig Stowers gave the annual State of the Judiciary Address to the members of the Alaska House and Senate. In his speech, Chief Justice Stowers outlined, in great detail, how the Alaska Court system is working to streamline services and save money as Alaska is facing huge fiscal challenges. He also called on the members of the House and Senate to work together and make the hard decisions that are needed to allow Alaska to weather the current fiscal storm. Representative Max Gruenberg (D-Anchorage), a member of the House Finance Committee’s Courts Budget Subcommittee, praised Justice Stowers’ speech as an example for lawmakers to emulate as they consider how to address the nearly $4 billion budget deficit.

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NEWS: House and Senate Minorities Propose Creating a Caucus of the Whole in the Alaska Legislature

Juneau – Last Friday was the 60th anniversary of the signing of the Alaska Constitution.  The convention in Fairbanks featured 55 Alaskans, elected from all regions and walks of life.  These far-thinking delegates came together as one and crafted a document that has guided not only the state government, but also Alaska’s institutions and people.  The constitutional example is being followed today by the Alaska Senate Democrats and the Alaska Independent Democratic Coalition as they propose a new structure for the 29th Alaska Legislature.

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Rep. Claman’s Newsletter: National Guard and Smart Justice Reform

The conversation around the budget continues to be the most important issue facing the Legislature. Look for constituent surveys in your mailbox in the next week: I appreciate your feedback, especially when dealing with such a critical issue. Meanwhile, the Judiciary Committee has been working hard on critical reform legislation dealing with the Alaska National Guard and criminal justice and corrections. I hope everyone in South Central went unharmed by the recent earthquake, and that you can join me this Saturday at Tastee Freez (4pm to 5pm) to chat and get updates about the legislative session or other issues in our community.

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Rep. Claman’s Newsletter: Session begins!

Claman's Alaska Matters

Today was the first day of the second regular legislative session. Over the next 90 days, the Legislature will make decisions that will have an impact on Alaskans and Alaska for many years. I am committed to a responsible fiscal plan for Alaska and believe we can no longer live off of the volatility of the oil market. We face great fiscal challenges and need a responsible action plan for Alaska.

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