The two legislators in charge of crafting the Alaska’s capital budget say with oil prices low and the state facing at least a $3.5 billion deficit there should be no “discretionary spending” this year.
On Saturday Senate Finance Committee Co-Chair Senator Anna MacKinnon and House Fiance Committee Co-Chair Representative Steve Thompson shared their thoughts on the situation in a memo distributed to all state legislators.
In the memo the two say:
“As the Co-chairs of the Capital Budget in our respective bodies, we are recommending the legislature forgo discretionary spending for the FY2017 Capital Budget. With your support, we will manage expectations of our communities.”
According to MacKinnon’s office a similar memo was issued last year. They also said the memo means they are recommending no individual district requests are likely to make into the capital budget this year. That doesn’t mean there will be no capital budget at all, however, as the memo also make clear the Co-Chairs intend to continue consider funding projects that leverage federal money into the state or those that are deemed major health, life, and safety needs.
Here is the memo: