Legislature(2015 - 2016)

2016-01-19 Senate Journal

Full Journal pdf

2016-01-19                     Senate Journal                      Page 1605
SB 138                                                                                                                        
SENATE BILL NO. 138 BY THE SENATE RULES COMMITTEE                                                                               
BY REQUEST OF THE GOVERNOR, entitled:                                                                                           
             "An Act making appropriations, including                                                                           
             capital appropriations, reappropriations, and                                                                      
             other appropriations; making appropriations to                                                                     
             capitalize funds; and providing for an effective                                                                   
was read the first time and referred to the Finance Committee.                                                                  
Governor's transmittal letter dated January 15:                                                                                 
Dear President Meyer:                                                                                                           
Under the authority of Article III, Section 18 of the Alaska                                                                    
Constitution, I am transmitting a bill relating to the State's capital                                                          
budget for Fiscal Year 2017 (FY 2017).                                                                                          
The proposed capital budget totals $1.3 billion, of which $957 million                                                          
is federal funds, $195 million is unrestricted general funds, and $111                                                          
million is other funds. The budget provides minimum capital funding                                                             

2016-01-19                     Senate Journal                      Page 1606
for housing programs, limited energy and school maintenance and                                                                 
construction projects, and matching funds for transportation, water,                                                            
and sewer.                                                                                                                      
The largest component of the capital budget is the State's                                                                      
transportation program, totaling $68.9 million in State funds and $860                                                          
million in matching federal funds. The second largest is minimum                                                                
maintenance projects to address the life, health, and safety needs of                                                           
State agencies and school districts, and the required maintenance for                                                           
annual certification for the Alaska Marine Highway System vessels.                                                              
Three priority school construction projects are included: the highest                                                           
priority school (Kachemak Selo), remaining funding required for the                                                             
Kivalina school, and a school kitchen facility for the Bethel school                                                            
damaged in a recent fire. The capital budget also proposes $5 million                                                           
for criminal justice reform initiatives, which will strengthen public                                                           
safety protections and reduce corrections spending, and $1 million for                                                          
the Bethel Scout Battalion, which will provide support to local                                                                 
communities facing natural and manmade disasters.                                                                               
My Administration looks forward to working with the Legislature to                                                              
finalize a capital budget at a sustainable level and is interested in                                                           
collectively looking at a disciplined approach to using General                                                                 
Obligation Bonds for existing capital requirements.                                                                             
I urge your prompt and favorable action on this measure.                                                                        
Bill Walker