Budget Battle Brews

     As chair of the University, Court System, and Department of Law budget subcommittees, I convened hearings to consider—and possibly reshape—Governor Dunleavy’s drastic budget proposals. 


     His Law and Courts budgets are basically sound, but the governor’s plan to slash 41% of the University’s undesignated general fund is a non-starter.


     President Jim Johnsen explained to my sub-committee that U of A has already sustained $195 million in cumulative cuts over the last 5 years, and Governor Dunleavy’s $134 million single-year reduction would cripple the University’s ability to fulfill its teaching, research and public service missions.


     I’m not going to let that happen. The legislature now has the opportunity—and the responsibility—to ensure that our strong higher education system has adequate financial resources to serve the many thousands of Alaskans who reap many benefits from it. 


     Since the Governor rolled out his budget last month, scores of Alaskans have urged the Legislature to maintain University funding and preserve programs such as WWAMI, which ensures that 20 Alaskans annually are admitted to the highly-competitive University of Washington Medical School.


     Even if the Legislature stymies Governor Dunleavy’s proposed draconian cut, it’s already damaged students’, faculty’s and research funders’ confidence in our University’s future: They’re already “voting with their feet.”


     As a former UAA student and faculty member with UAA, which lies in the heart of my district, I know just how much our community benefits from a vibrant higher education system.


     A strong University is essential for a strong economic future in any state, so I will be working diligently to maintain our University’s budget, and I hope you keep vigorously voicing your support for our U.


Rep. Josephson Chairing the University of Alaska Budget Subcommittee


HB 81 and Alaska Youth for Environmental Action


I was very excited to meet with leaders from Alaska Youth for Environmental Actions (AYEA) last week and hear about the future they envision for our state. These young people are articulate, passionate and dedicated to Alaska.


They were eager to discuss and express support for HB 81, my proposed ban on some plastic bags. AYEA members were present to watch this legislation be introduced on the House floor.


Single use plastics’ impact on our environment—especially our oceans—is a timely topic being addressed around the world. HB 81 is a way for our state to acknowledge this global issue and represents a small but significant step Alaska can take toward a more environmentally- sustainable future.

Rep. Josephson with AYEA youth leaders


I’m Working Hard for You

You can contact me by phone at 465-4939 or 1-800-465-4939. I am also available by email at rep.andy.josephson@akleg.gov. I look forward to hearing from you!



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Juneau, AK 99801

(907) 465--4939

(800) 465-4939

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