Alexandra Gutierrez, APRN - Juneau
agutierrez (at) alaskapublic (dot) org | 907.209.1799 | About Alexandra
Eight days after the statutory deadline, the Alaska State Legislature has adjourned. But as soon as the gavel dropped, Gov. Bill Walker issued a proclamation calling them into a special session.
Lawmakers may gavel out this evening after a week long stalemate on the budget.
After a week of lots of gridlock and little accomplished, the Alaska State Legislature lurched into some fits of action on the budget this weekend.
A three-quarter vote is needed to access the state’s rainy day fund, and the House’s Democratic minority has made their support conditional on a few priorities, like increased education funding and Medicaid expansion. The Republican majorities in the House and Senate are now considering ways to avoid that vote.
The 4142-page file was sent to news organizations at 3p.m. on Friday afternoon. Alaska Public Media and the Alaska Dispatch News requested the materials nearly a year ago, during the Parnell administration, but were denied access until a superior court judge ruled for their release in October.
Gov. Bill Walker is calling on lawmakers to do work on bills for as long as it continues to be in extended session.
Outside of a 20-minute Senate floor session, the only scheduled activity that took place on Tuesday was a Senate Finance committee press conference.
It is Day 92 of the legislative session, and lawmakers still have not reached a compromise on the state’s budget. APRN’s Alexandra Gutierrez joins us from a very quiet Capitol.
After a day of stalled and canceled meetings, the Alaska Legislature made small advances on a capital budget.
The hold up is a vote to draw from the constitutional budget reserve to fill a multi-billion-dollar deficit. Without support from the Democratic minority, the Legislature is short at least three votes to tap the rainy day fund.
Most of the high-level appointments made it through with unanimous support. But Attorney General Craig Richards saw significant — though not fatal — pushback from the Legislature.
The Alaska State Legislature is scheduled to gavel out on Sunday, before the stroke of midnight. But many of the issues lawmakers have delved into – the budget, Medicaid, marijuana – are still unsettled. APRN’s Alexandra Gutierrez joins us to talk about what the end game for the legislative session looks like.
With the president of the Alaska Federation of Natives by his side, Walker announced at a press conference that the state would make it easier for Alaska Native children to remain with extended family or with tribal members in adoption cases.
With the legislature scheduled to gavel out by midnight on Sunday, Governor Bill Walker has seen very few pieces of legislation make it to his desk. APRN’s Alexandra Gutierrez sat down with Walker yesterday afternoon to get his take on how the session is progressing. Walker said he thinks it’s still possible for lawmakers to get their work done on time.
The executive proclamation comes days after legislative leadership cancelled their confirmation session — and days after the governor sent a six-page letter reiterating that he would veto a contentious gasline bill and urging lawmakers not to override him.
The Alaska House has narrowly passed a bill that would claw back raises for many state workers.
A bill that applies a uniform code of military justice to the Alaska National Guard will not pass the Legislature this year.
In a 13-to-1 vote, the Legislative Council has decided to punt on the question of what to do with the Anchorage legislative information office.
With Alaska facing a multi-billion-dollar revenue shortfall, lawmakers are reexamining certain subsidies to see if they should remain on the books. The film tax credit program, which was vulnerable even in times of plenty, has gotten special attention.
As the Legislature enters its final days, the budget is the main concern. Alaska faces a multi-billion-dollar revenue shortfall, and even expenditures that have been considered sacrosanct are now seeing reductions. The cuts to education are among the most controversial. APRN’s Alexandra Gutierrez joins us to discuss them.