Legislature(2005 - 2006)

2005-07-01 Senate Journal

Full Journal pdf

2005-07-01                     Senate Journal                      Page 1766
SB 46                                                                                             
Message dated June 28 and received June 29, stating:                                                
Dear President Stevens:                                                                             
On this date I signed with line item vetoes the following bill passed by                            
the first special session of the Twenty-Fourth Alaska State Legislature                             
and am transmitting the engrossed and enrolled copies to the                                        
Lieutenant Governor's Office for permanent filing:                                                  
         HOUSE CS FOR 2d CS FOR SENATE BILL NO.                                                     
         46(FIN) am H(brf sup maj pfld H) "An Act making                                            
         and amending appropriations, including capital                                             
         appropriations, supplemental appropriations,                                               
         reappropriations, and appropriations to capitalize                                         
         funds; making appropriations under art. IX, sec.                                           
         17(c), Constitution of the State of Alaska, from the                                       
         constitutional budget reserve fund; and providing for                                      
         an effective date."                                                                        

2005-07-01                     Senate Journal                      Page 1767
                           Chapter 3, FSSLA 2005                                                   
                        Effective Date: See Chapter                                                
Alaska's future awaits great opportunities.  The challenge of                                       
leadership is to make decisions today that will realize those                                       
opportunities tomorrow.  The capital budget is the state's investment                               
tool by which it can ensure Alaskans have the quality of life they                                  
treasure and our children have good paying, challenging careers at                                  
Overall the Fiscal Year 2006 capital budget totals nearly $1.7 billion,                             
which is $264 million less than the prior fiscal year primarily due to a                            
decrease in Federal funding.  Of note, however, is the increased level                              
of state general funds in the capital budget.  The use of state funds is                            
important because Alaska can fund state priorities instead of having                                
the Federal government set our priorities because of heavy reliance on                              
Federal dollars for capital improvements.                                                           
This year's level of state investment is something Alaska has not been                              
able to afford for many years.  It has enabled the state to meet many of                            
its basic responsibilities-from catching up on the care of our schools,                             
to needed transportation improvements, to getting Alaska's                                          
infrastructure ready for the state's economic future, especially the                                
The capital budget also includes $32 million for our Roads to                                       
Resources program.  Alaska's wealth is in its natural resources but                                 
there are challenges in gaining access in order to develop.  This                                   
initiative will advance oil and gas development on the North Slope and                              
the Alaska Peninsula as well as advance mining opportunities across                                 
the state.  For example, only yesterday a major new entrant to Alaska's                             
oil and gas industry told me of the importance of the proposed Bullen                               
Point Road to oil and gas development on the North Slope.                                           
I am most proud of the commitment made this session to meet the                                     
maintenance needs of schools throughout Alaska.  Since creation of                                  
the Department of Education and Early Development's Major                                           
Maintenance priority list in 1994, this is the first time that the entire                           
backlog of projects has been addressed.  The capital budget                                         
appropriates $74 million in Fiscal Years 2006 and 2007 for school                                   

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maintenance.  In other legislation, the school debt reimbursement                                   
program was continued so that larger school districts would be able to                              
address maintenance and school construction needs.  In combination,                                 
more than $286 million will be invested to ensure Alaska's schools are                              
safer and growing communities have the classrooms they need.                                        
This capital project funding is in addition to the increased commitment                             
to K-12 education funding in the operating budget.  Fiscal Year 2006                                
funding will increase $70 million, bringing the increase in education                               
funding to 23% during the first three years of this Administration.                                 
Moreover, the Legislature advance funded K-12 by tapping $400                                       
million of the windfall the state received in Fiscal Year 2005.                                     
In anticipation of gasline development we must get the state's                                      
infrastructure ready so it can transport the construction materials                                 
needed to build the gasline.  The capital budget includes several                                   
projects that will get a start on these roads and bridges.                                          
But it is not just transportation of construction materials for which we                            
must prepare; it's also the movement of people.  While Alaska's                                     
population has seen stable growth in recent years, we still have                                    
congested roadways in our major population centers, such as                                         
Anchorage, Kenai, and the Matanuska-Susitna Borough.  The capital                                   
budget includes $94 million to improve movement of local traffic so                                 
Alaskans will have more time with their families and spend less time                                
waiting at crowded intersections.  These improvements also will allow                               
commerce to move more efficiently, thereby helping businesses                                       
transact more quickly with their customers.                                                         
For the first time in a number of years, the Legislature appropriated                               
"discretionary" funds to local governments and non-profit                                           
organizations for a wide variety of purposes.  I have vetoed several of                             
these for reasons that follow:                                                                      
  Reason for veto:  Inadequate documentation submitted to confirm                                 
  that expenditure of funds would result in a public purpose or that the                            
  project would be completed:                                                                       
· Council of Athabaskan Tribal Governments - Solar Electrical                                       
     System for Yukon Flats Health Center - $70,000 (amount funded                                  
     is one-fifth project's cost)                                                                   

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· Anchorage - Chester Creek Sports Complex Skate Park -                                             
     $100,000 ($2 million requested)                                                                
· Anchorage - Bancroft Subdivision Sound Barrier Fence - $40,000                                    
     (design money only; no indication how construction will be                                     
· Port Lions - Solid Waste Disposal Site Upgrade - $5,000                                           
     (community requested $350,000)                                                                 
· Lake and Peninsula Borough - Kokhank/Purchase Fire Truck -                                        
     $5,000 (community requested $150,000)                                                          
· Old Harbor - Boat Harbor Expansion - $10,000 (community                                           
     requested $4.3 million)                                                                        
· Iliamna - Barge Ramp Facilities and Docks - $10,000 (community                                    
     requested $1.5 million)                                                                        
· Pedro Bay Landfill Road Completion - $10,000 (community                                           
     requested $150,000)                                                                            
· Igiugig Seaplane Base Development - $10,000 (community                                            
     requested $75,000 to design; no indication how construction                                    
     would be financed)                                                                             
· Anchorage - Mountain Park/Robin Hill LRSA, Engineering and                                        
     Construction for Drainage and Surface Improvements - $150,000                                  
        (back-up documentation indicates for engineering work only)                                
   Reason for veto:  Utility related costs should be paid by ratepayers.                         
· Homer Electric Association - Right of Way Clearing - $250,000                                     
· Matanuska-Susitna Borough - Talkeetna Water and Sewer Plan -                                      
  Reason for veto:  Membership organization/not a state                                           
· Fairbanks Motorcycle Racing Lions Club - Safety Fencing and                                       
     Enclosure Construction - $20,000                                                               
· Northwest Archers Association - Kincaid Park Archery Range                                        
     Equipment - $10,000                                                                            
I have also vetoed Section 19(a) - Re-appropriation of Federal                                      
Unrestricted Receipts Balances to the Alaska Debt Retirement Fund -                                 
indeterminate amount.  There are several appropriations of federal                                  

2005-07-01                     Senate Journal                      Page 1770
unrestricted receipts that are not fully expended or encumbered.  This                              
veto will prevent the unintended consequence of re-appropriating                                    
those balances to the debt retirement fund.                                                         
There are, however, a number of other grants on which conditions will                               
be placed before they are disbursed.  As appropriate, these conditions                              
will include a requirement that communities resolve outstanding                                     
financial liabilities to the state or Federal government; have Workers'                             
Compensation insurance in place; and assumption of responsibility for                               
the operations and maintenance of improvements as required under the                                
statute that governs grants to municipalities (AS 37.05.315(c)).                                    
Grants that are approved but will be conditioned upon resolution of                                 
financial liabilities include:                                                                      
· Hydaburg - School Van - $30,000                                                                   
· Marshall - Community Center Renovation - $40,000                                                  
· Akhiok - Bulk Fuel Purchase (re-appropriation)                                                    
· Saint George - Harbor Planning/Engineering - $150,000                                             
· Tununak - Community Facilities and Equipment (re-                                                 
· Alakanuk - City Facilities Repair, Maintenance - $25,000                                          
· Emmonak - Heavy Equipment, Purchase, Repair - $250,000                                            
Grants that are approved but conditioned on Workers' Compensation                                   
insurance being in place include:                                                                   
· Angoon - Fire Truck - $30,000                                                                     
· Angoon - Snow Removal Equipment - $50,000                                                         
· Angoon - Community Hall Renovation - $100,000                                                     
· Angoon - Search and Rescue Vessel Purchase - $57,000                                              
Grants that are approved but conditions will be negotiated regarding                                
local government assumption of ownership and/or maintenance and                                     
operations pursuant to AS 37.05.315(c) (Grants to Municipalities)                                   
· Wasilla - Wasilla to Big Lake Trail - $2 million                                                  
· Anchorage - Glenn Highway Hightower Lighting/Veteran's                                            
     Parkway Interchange to South Birchwood Loop Road - $2.7                                        

2005-07-01                     Senate Journal                      Page 1771
· Anchorage - Veteran's Memorial Highway - Eagle River High                                         
     School Traffic Control Turn Lanes - $650,000                                                   
· Anchorage - Yosemite Drive Road and Drainage Improvements at                                      
     Eagle Rim - $500,000                                                                           
· Anchorage - Muldoon Road Lighting Project - $100,000                                              
· Anchorage - Muldoon, Tudor Road Sound Barrier Fence -                                             
· Anchorage - Strawberry Road/Jewel Lake Road Intersection                                          
     Improvements - $1.3 million                                                                    
· Anchorage - Raspberry Road Extension - Minnesota to Rovenna                                       
     - $1.3 million                                                                                 
· Anchorage - 88 Avenue Upgrade - $250,000                                                          
· Anchorage - Abbott Road Guard Rail Construction - $75,000                                         
· Matanuska-Susitna Borough - Chip Seal Test Project on Crystal                                     
     Lake Road in Willow - $85,000                                                                  
· Soldotna - Kobuk/Sterling Highway Lights - $200,000                                               
· Kodiak - Otmeloi Way Rehabilitation - $3.3 million                                                
· Bethel - Emergency Dock Repairs - $771,189                                                        
· Kenai - North Spur Highway Extension - $5 million                                                 
Several grants to local governments are for operating costs.  While I                               
have approved the funding this time, it will be important that the                                  
communities find other funding going forward in order to meet these                                 
local priorities on a longer-term basis.                                                            
I have also asked the Department of Commerce, Community and                                         
Economic Development to work with the U.S. Department of Energy                                     
to determine the feasibility of the work associated with a mini-nuclear                             
power plant funded in a $500,000 grant to the City of Galena.                                       
I am also concerned that a number of grants partially fund projects.                                
High oil prices and the subsequent windfall provided an opportunity                                 
this session for a state grant, but that does not mean there will be                                
similar funding in the future.  As a result, it is important for these                              
communities and organizations to develop a solid finance plan for                                   
each project that does not solely rely on legislative discretionary                                 
funding in the future.                                                                              

2005-07-01                     Senate Journal                      Page 1772
Sincerely yours,                                                                                    
Frank H. Murkowski