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Fri Dec 13, 2019, 06:12 AM

Despite Dunleavy plan, Alaska legislators are skeptical of big dividend

JUNEAU — On Wednesday, Gov. Mike Dunleavy unveiled a state budget proposal that avoids the big spending cuts he pushed for last year. While some lawmakers said they were pleasantly surprised by the governor’s new approach, they also said the Alaska Legislature is unlikely to approve the “full” Permanent Fund Dividend requested by the governor.

“Based on meetings that I have been to, I think that is going to be a heavy lift,” said Rep. Cathy Tilton, R-Wasilla and a supporter of the traditional dividend.

Between 1982 and 2016, the state relied on a formula to determine the amount of the Permanent Fund Dividend. That formula remains on the books, but lawmakers have declined to follow it in recent years, instead following an Alaska Supreme Court ruling that said the formula is not binding.

Dunleavy reiterated Wednesday that he believes the state should follow it until it is altered.

Rep. Chris Tuck, D-Anchorage, supports the traditional dividend but said he doesn’t even know whether the legislature will repeat the $1,600 dividend approved for 2019.

Read more: https://www.adn.com/politics/2019/12/12/despite-dunleavy-plan-alaska-legislators-say-big-dividend-is-unlikely/
(Anchorage Daily News)

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