Please join me and Rep. Bart Lebon this Sunday at the Fairbanks LIO.
Dear Friends, Neighbors, and Fellow Fairbanksans,
This weekend, the House Finance Committee will be visiting communities around the state to give constituents the opportunity to watch a short presentation on Alaska’s fiscal situation and to share their thoughts on the budget. Although I am not on the finance committee, I will be in attendance to hear from everyone in attendance, and I’d love to hear from you.
If you can, please come see us at the Fairbanks LIO from 2-5 pm this Sunday, March 24th. The LIO is located at 1292 Sadler Way, Suite 308. If you've never been, it's located on the third floor of the bank building near Home Depot.
This week, the House wrapped up the budget subcommittee process. Each subcommittee is tasked with a different department’s budget; the governor’s proposed changes (mostly cuts) are considered one by one, with amendments considered afterwards. As a member of four committees, I was assigned to seven different subcommittees. These 7 subcommittees have largely rejected the controversial, draconian cuts proposed by the Dunleavy administration while allowing reasonable cuts to move forward.
Contrary to the Governor’s proposal, my subcommittees chose to maintain funding for the University, public broadcasting, and the ferry system. I successfully added $10M to the University budget through an amendment, bringing the University budget to $337M. This is $145M more than the governor had proposed.
The House Finance committee will now consider the budget in totality, with opportunities for additional amendments before it reaches the house floor. Although many steps remain before final passage, I’m optimistic that the final budget will maintain many of the services that so many Alaskans rely upon every day.