Rep. Kawasaki’s Juneau Note: 27th Legislature Special Session

Lawmakers are in day 22 of the special session and I will remain here in Juneau as a stalemate continues between the Legislature and the Governor. The problem in Juneau continues to be the threat of the Governor’s vetoes in retaliation for the Senate not passing a bill aimed at tax breaks for big oil producers. Though things are moving slowly, negotiations between leadership and the Governor continue and there has been movement.

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House Democrats Propose Common-Sense Solution to Budget Impasse

All parties should stand down and work together in good faith

JUNEAU – Today, Alaska House Democrats announced a simple, common-sense solution to the budget stand-off that has the Legislature locked into a special session.

“We have a way out of this mess. It isn’t all that complicated,” said Representative Beth Kerttula, House Minority Leader. “We say this without blame and in the spirit of being helpful.”

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Democrats to U.S. Attorney General: Investigate Alaska Gas Prices

JUNEAU – Today, Alaska Representatives Pete Petersen and Chris Tuck (both D-Anchorage), and Representative Scott Kawasaki (D-Fairbanks) sent a letter to U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder asking that he investigate Alaskan fuel prices as part of his investigation of nationwide gasoline prices.

“Alaska produces more oil than most countries, but Alaskans still pay more at the pump than anyone else in the U.S. Something’s not right,” said Rep. Petersen. “Any investigation into high fuel prices should certainly include a hard look at the situation in Alaska.”

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Rep. Kawasaki’s Juneau Note: EOS? Maybe not so… Why Does it Take So Long? Permanent Fund Tops $40-Billion!

As you may have already heard, the end of session is scheduled for Sunday at midnight. Right now, at 8pm, it looks very unlikely that the Legislature will finish the work that we need to do to adjourn. The budget, Susitna Dam energy issues, college scholarships and coastal environmental policy remain in play tonight. With so much work left to be done, it wouldn’t be right to adjourn without finishing our work.

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Rep. Kawasaki’s Juneau Note: Capital Budget Update; Time is Counting Down;

The Capital Budget is one of the last items to pass at the end of session. The budget contains all of the funds for construction of roads and buildings and special appropriations for one-time items requested by communities. This year, I focused on projects to improve the quality of life, improve energy availability and major state responsibilities including education and state infrastructure. The budget contains some of these important projects for the Fairbanks. The state received thousands of requests that total several billion dollars to 432 communities. Though they are all important to the someone, the Senate had to do a good job of cutting out all but the essential priorities.

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