Rep. Seaton’s May 23rd Newsletter

Rep. Paul Seaton

Greetings from Homer at the end of the second regular session of the 29th legislature. The governor has called us back into special session in Juneau, beginning Monday. I have provided a wrap up of the session, notable legislation, and the budgets below. In Monday’s newsletter I will provide a summary of the bills the Governor has included in the special session agenda: Operating and Capital budgets, Alaska Permanent Fund bill, Oil/Gas Tax Credits, a tax bill to include an income tax, motor fuels, alcohol, fishery and tobacco; adoption of child in state custody, foster care, health insurance, and medical insurance for survivors of peace officers and firefighters. Click here for Governor’s Proclamation and list of bills.

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Rep. Seaton’s May 16th Newsletter

Rep. Paul Seaton

Greetings from Juneau on this 119th legislative day. It’s back to rain again after a sunny weekend. This Wednesday is the last day of the constitutionally allowed 121 day session. A single 10-day extension is possible but I don’t know if there is the support needed for the two thirds vote required to extend the session another 10 days. Whether or not that vote occurs will depend on what happens in the next few days. Of course if we do not vote to extend, the governor or the legislature can always call a special session. However, the subjects would be set and would be introduced as new bills and the process would need to restart. The Governor has strongly expressed that he thinks Alaska needs a sustainable plan for dealing with the huge deficit and projected deficits at expected oil prices and is likely to call us back immediately if he feels we have not addressed enough of the big revenue items.

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Rep. Seaton’s May 9th Newsletter

Rep. Paul Seaton

Greetings from Juneau this 112th day of the second session of the 29th legislature. We are still working in the 120 day session allowed by the constitution and I hope we will not get to a vote to enable the one 10-day extension also allowed by the constitution. My staff Jenny Martin is now back in the Homer office if anyone is looking to connect with us in person.

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Rep. Seaton’s May 2nd Newsletter

Rep. Paul Seaton

Greetings from Juneau on this 105th day of the second legislative session. We are still in negotiations on oil taxes (HB 247). Discussion is happening in small and big groups. There have been no official committee meetings because we are still working on the elements of a bill that can get 21 votes to pass. These credits remain a core issue. It will be tough to get enough votes on revenue proposals or the budget without a compromise on oil taxes first, then getting the necessary ¾ vote will be even harder.

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Rep. Seaton’s April 25th Newsletter

Rep. Paul Seaton

Greetings from Juneau on this 98th day of the second legislative session. Though we attempted to get all the work done in 90 days, with some very contentious issues still on the table we are trying to finish within an extended session timeframe. The voter initiative for a 90 day session limit was passed in 2007, but the constitution allows a session length up to 120 days. A special session is a 30-day call, made by either the governor or the legislature, to deal with designated items, so this is not yet a true special session. Almost all the items now under consideration revolve around money and how to pay for services as the drop in oil price has left us with a $4.1 billion deficit for our $5.5 billion state funded budget!

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