Legislature(2015 - 2016)

2015-05-19 House Journal

Full Journal pdf

2015-05-19                     House Journal                      Page 1197
HB 72                                                                                                                         
The following letter was dated and received May 18, 2015, at                                                                    
4:53 p.m.:                                                                                                                      
"Dear Speaker Chenault:                                                                                                         
On this date, I have signed the following bill passed by the First                                                              
Regular Session of the Twenty-Ninth Alaska State Legislature, with                                                              
line item vetoes, and am transmitting the engrossed and enrolled                                                                
copies to the Lieutenant Governor's office for permanent filing:                                                                
     CONFERENCE CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 72(brf sup maj                                                                            
     fld H)                                                                                                                     
     "An Act making appropriations for the operating and loan                                                                   
     program expenses of state government and for certain programs                                                              
     and capitalizing funds; amending appropriations; and providing                                                             
     for an effective date."                                                                                                    

2015-05-19                     House Journal                      Page 1198
     Chapter No. 23, SLA 2015                                                                                                   
     [Effective Date:  See Chapter]                                                                                             
My line item vetoes are extraordinary in light of the fact that the                                                             
Legislature transmitted a budget in CCS HB 72(brf sup maj fld H)                                                                
(HB 72) for fiscal year 2016 that was underfunded by nearly                                                                     
$3,000,000,000. I called a special session on April 27, 2015, asking                                                            
the Legislature to address the unfunded portion of HB 72. As of today,                                                          
the Legislature has not resolved the funding shortfall.                                                                         
In the event legislative action is not forthcoming, the line item vetoes                                                        
ensure continued operation of critical State functions, including                                                               
prisons, detention centers, and work by State Troopers. The version of                                                          
HB 72 I have transmitted also will keep open facilities, including the                                                          
Alaska Psychiatric Institute and the Alaska Pioneers' Homes and                                                                 
ensure distribution of health care payments for several months. This                                                            
version of HB 72 ensures full debt service payments to mitigate the                                                             
negative impact a significantly underfunded budget may have on the                                                              
State's credit rating. In addition, it also allows every agency to allocate                                                     
funds for heat, lights, and emergency maintenance and services for                                                              
maintaining critical operations such as network communications and                                                              
payroll. Finally, this option provides the ability to maintain programs                                                         
that operate fully on earned receipts, designated funds, and federal                                                            
Absent legislative action to address the shortfall, most other                                                                  
government functions will likely have to stop shortly after July 1. If                                                          
the Legislature does not take action before June 1, 2015, layoff notices                                                        
for personnel not directly responsible for health, life, and safety                                                             
functions will be sent to affected employees.                                                                                   
Respecting the separate branches of government, both the Legislature                                                            
and Judiciary budgets remain as presented in CCS HB 72(brf sup maj                                                              
fld H).                                                                                                                         
Bill Walker