Legislature(2021 - 2022)

2021-02-18 House Journal

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2021-02-18                     House Journal                      Page 0105
HJR 6                                                                                                                         
HOUSE JOINT RESOLUTION NO. 6 by the House Rules Committee                                                                       
by request of the Governor:                                                                                                     
     Proposing amendments to the Constitution of the State of Alaska                                                            
     relating to an appropriation limit; and relating to the budget                                                             
     reserve fund.                                                                                                              
was read the first time and referred to the State Affairs, Judiciary, and                                                       
Finance Committees.                                                                                                             
The following fiscal note(s) apply:                                                                                             
1.  Zero, Office of the Governor                                                                                                
The Governor's transmittal letter dated January 19 follows:                                                                     
"Dear Chief Clerk:                                                                                                              
Under the authority of Article III, Section 18, of the Alaska                                                                   
Constitution, I am transmitting a bill proposing a resolution to amend                                                          
the Constitution of the State of Alaska, Article IX, Sections 16 and 17.                                                        

2021-02-18                     House Journal                      Page 0106
The proposed amendment would change the baseline for the                                                                        
constitutional appropriation limit so that appropriations for a fiscal                                                          
year would not exceed the average of the appropriations for the                                                                 
previous three years plus the cumulative percent change in inflation or                                                         
population, whichever is greater, over the previous three year period.                                                          
The amendment would exempt from the spending limit appropriations                                                               
to state savings accounts, the permanent fund and for permanent fund                                                            
dividend payments, appropriations of bond proceeds and the principal                                                            
and interest on those bonds, and appropriations of money from a non-                                                            
state source.                                                                                                                   
Additionally, the proposed amendment would change the budget                                                                    
reserve fund established in Article IX, Section 17 so that it can only be                                                       
used as a funding source, if the amount in the general fund for a given                                                         
year, is less than the appropriation limit. The budget reserve would be                                                         
available for no other purpose.                                                                                                 
We must develop a stable and sustainable budget in order to assure                                                              
economic growth in our State. This amendment provides an important                                                              
tool for curbing unsustainable growth in government spending by                                                                 
indexing future appropriations to those made in prior fiscal years while                                                        
ensuring the State has a reserve balance to stabilize revenues during                                                           
years of unexpected decline.                                                                                                    
This resolution is a simple but powerful way to structurally cap                                                                
government growth. I urge your prompt and favorable action on this                                                              
Mike Dunleavy