Anchorage, AK (STL.News) Alaska Governor Mike Dunleavy applauded the Alaska State Legislature’s Comprehensive Fiscal Policy Working Group for holding its first meeting and taking seriously the need to resolve the political issue that has become the use of the Permanent Fund’s earnings. The Governor further commended members of the Working Group, appointed by the Senate President and the Speaker of the House, for recognizing that a solution requires involvement from the Alaskan public through a Constitutional Amendment, and protecting the PFD from annual political fights and bargains.
“From the remarks given by Senators and Representatives across the political spectrum, it is clear there is a strong desire to end the uncertainty which Permanent Fund deliberations place on Alaskans,” said Governor Dunleavy. “This issue must be solved, it must be solved in a way that puts the issue to bed, it must be solved in a way that involves the people, and, most importantly, the legislative portion of the solution must be solved this year.”
On May 13th, Governor Dunleavy issued two proclamations calling the Legislature into special session: one began on May 20th to complete the budget process and take up constitutional changes to the Permanent Fund’s earnings; the other on August 2nd to address the other challenges facing Alaska’s finances. A revised proclamation will be necessary to renumber the August special session due to the urgency of an additional, unplanned special session, which began on June 23rd, and resulted in narrowly avoiding a government shutdown. Governor Dunleavy will ensure a Permanent Fund Dividend for the fall of 2021 is a priority in the upcoming special session.