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Sat Jul 1, 2017, 09:47 AM

Alaska Gov. Walker signs budget, leaves dividends at amount set by lawmakers

Alaska Gov. Bill Walker signed Alaska's annual operating budget into law Friday without line item vetoes a sharp contrast from last year, when he used the veto to slash more than $1 billion for Permanent Fund dividends and other programs.

The new budget spends $3.73 billion in unrestricted general funds on state agencies about 3 percent less than the $3.86 billion in last year's budget. It also allots an estimated $1,100 for each Alaskan's Permanent Fund dividend.

Lawmakers reduced the dividend amount by roughly half from what it would have been under the historical formula used to calculate dividends.

The leftover money was initially expected to go toward fixing the state's $2.5 billion deficit, but the Legislature failed to agree on a plan to fill the gap with investment earnings from the $60 billion Permanent Fund which will remain unspent in the fund's earnings reserve account.

Read more: https://www.adn.com/politics/2017/06/30/alaska-gov-walker-signs-budget-leaves-permanent-fund-dividends-intact/

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