Legislature(2019 - 2020)

2019-07-08 House Journal

Full Journal pdf

2019-07-08                     House Journal                      Page 1210
HB 39                                                                                                                         
The following letter dated June 28 was received at 10:56 a.m.:                                                                  
"Dear Speaker Edgmon:                                                                                                           
On this date, I have signed, with line-item vetoes, the following bill                                                          
passed during the First Special Session of the Thirty-First Alaska State                                                        
Legislature and am transmitting the engrossed and enrolled copies to                                                            
the Lieutenant Governor's Office for permanent filing:                                                                          

2019-07-08                     House Journal                      Page 1211
     CONFERENCE CS FOR SS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 39                                                                                 
     "An Act making appropriations for the operating and loan                                                                   
     program expenses of state government and for certain programs;                                                             
     capitalizing funds; amending appropriations; making                                                                        
     supplemental appropriations and reappropriations; and providing                                                            
     for an effective date."                                                                                                    
     Chapter No.1, FSSLA 2019                                                                                                   
     [Effective Date:  See Chapter]                                                                                             
For the past several years, the State of Alaska has attempted to operate                                                        
business as usual under a radically changing revenue picture. Based on                                                          
Alaska's fiscal reality, fundamental changes to our budgetary process                                                           
have to be implemented in order to align state expenditures and state                                                           
revenues. That is what this budget does.                                                                                        
With the state of Alaska now pointed in the right direction, this budget                                                        
moves us halfway toward a balanced budget. With an overall                                                                      
reduction of $678.8 million this year, next year we can close the state's                                                       
remaining deficit of $730 million. This two-year process will put                                                               
Alaska in a position of balancing the budget without new taxes or a                                                             
reduction of the traditional Permanent Fund Dividend.                                                                           
The budget goals and priorities for my administration have been very                                                            
clear from the beginning: maintain and protect our reserves,                                                                    
expenditures cannot exceed existing revenues, the budget is built on                                                            
core functions, and no additional taxes on Alaskans. In short, the                                                              
budget must be sustainable, predictable, and affordable. The operating                                                          
budget I transmitted on February 13, 2019 for legislative consideration                                                         
was designed to meet those goals. I appreciate the work and careful                                                             
deliberation that went into the final passage of HB 39.                                                                         
The attached reports summarize the line-item vetoes. In total, 182                                                              
items have been vetoed from the operating and mental health budgets                                                             
totaling $361.1 million in unrestricted general funds (UGF), $17.7                                                              
million in designated general funds (DGF), $12.4 million in other                                                               
funds, and $22.5 million in Federal funds. With these vetoes, the                                                               
FY2020 operating budget, including mental health appropriations                                                                 
made in HB 40, is $4,045.2 UGF, $855.2 DGF, $700.4 other funds,                                                                 
and $2,698.2 Federal funds. Included in the items vetoed in this bill                                                           

2019-07-08                     House Journal                      Page 1212
are the appropriations for FY2021 K-12 Foundation and Pupil                                                                     
Transportation funding. Per guidance from the Attorney General                                                                  
appropriations of future general fund revenues are not valid. These                                                             
items have been vetoed to prevent an unconstitutional dedication of                                                             
Based on the five principles outlined at the time of my initial budget                                                          
proposal, and a sincere effort to end the cycle of unsustainable deficit                                                        
spending, my administration worked to make a number of difficult, but                                                           
necessary decisions, including a veto of the unconstitutional                                                                   
dedication of funds for FY2021 education spending. This budget was                                                              
thoroughly evaluated, and my policies were applied consistently                                                                 
across the board. No one region, community, or legislative district was                                                         
singled out or held to any other threshold. It is critical that we get our                                                      
fiscal house in order and provide a secure and stable future for                                                                
This budget focuses on the state's basic responsibilities while                                                                 
understanding our fiscal constraints. This is one step in the right                                                             
direction – setting Alaska on the path to fiscal certainty while                                                                
acknowledging additional actions, over multiple years, are needed.                                                              
With this act, we have eliminated nearly 50 percent of the state's                                                              
deficit; more work will be needed in the months ahead and during the                                                            
next legislative session.                                                                                                       
I am committed to working with the legislature to address our state's                                                           
spending, to eliminate our deficit over time, and to move Alaska                                                                
Michael J. Dunleavy