Governor Dunleavy Releases 10-Year Budget Blueprint for Alaska
Plan builds the economy, promotes job growth, preserves PFD
March 21, 2019
“We can’t continue to spend more money than we have. My plan represents a vision of a smaller State government, with more money in the pockets of Alaskans while laying the foundation for new private sector investment and the new jobs that come with it,” said Governor Dunleavy. “While reductions in State services are understandably difficult choices to make. Alaska must implement a permanent fiscal plan to get the economy moving again.”
The ten-year plan also contains three alternative approaches to solving the State’s fiscal problem. The additional scenarios do not reduce the size of government. Instead, those alternatives make up the revenue shortfall over the next decade through PFD cuts, emptying reserve accounts, or imposing broad-based taxes that take billions of dollars from Alaskan families and the private sector economy.
“These alternatives clearly demonstrate there is no easy, simple solution to addressing the State’s budget deficit. Every option comes at a cost. I believe the plan my administration put forward is what the people voted for when they elected me,” Governor Dunleavy said.
Almost a week ago, Senate Democrats requested Governor Dunleavy to provide his fiscal plan immediately to the legislature and ensure it is available to the public through the Office of Management & Budget's website. Since that request, the budget is now available as of today.
Senate Democrats sent a letter to Governor Michael Dunleavy on March 14th (PDF) expressing concerns about what they called his ongoing violation of the Executive Budget Act. Alaska Statute 37.07.020(b) mandates the governor to submit "a fiscal plan with estimates of significant sources and uses of funds for the succeeding 10 fiscal years."
The governor's 10-year fiscal plan must identify sources and uses of state funds, must demonstrate a balanced budget while providing essential state services and protecting the economic stability of the state, must project fund balances into the future, and must appropriately explain assumptions to allow the legislature to rely on the plan in making budgetary decisions.
Since taking office on December 3, 2018, Governor Dunleavy was slow submitting his 10-year fiscal plan to the legislature. Governor Dunleavy provided his FY 2020 budget proposal to the legislature on February 13, 2019 and today provided his State of Alaska Fiscal Plan for FY20-FY29. The plan is based on projected revenues from the spring 2019 revenue forecast, the administration’s proposed balanced budget, and the enactment of the administration’s legislative package to create a permanent and sustainable fiscal plan.
Wielechowski said, "These statutory requirements establish important tools that the legislature and the public need to understand and evaluate Governor Dunleavy's objectives and vision for Alaska."
Begich said, "Governor Dunleavy has provided little, if any, real detail about the effects of his budget on Alaskans. The legislature must have transparency from his administration if we are to vet his proposals thoroughly and properly."
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Reporting & Editing by Mary Kauffman, SitNews
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