Close Out Budget Deliberations
Education, Children, Roads, and VPSOs Protected in FY 01
Juneau -- The Senate Finance Budget Subcommittees completed their work on the Fiscal Year 2001 budget almost a month ahead of last year's schedule, delivering recommendations calling for the full committee to:
"The Legislature is on track to complete the Republican Majority's five-year fiscal plan to reduce state spending by $250 million," said Senator Sean Parnell (R-Anchorage), Co-Chair of the Senate Finance Committee. "This has only been possible because we have held true to our commitment to spend less, in face of the governor's proposals to spend more."
"We take very seriously our responsibility to provide support for essential state services," said Senator John Torgerson (R-Kasilof), Co-Chair of the Senate Finance Committee. "These subcommittee recommendations point us toward a budget that meets our obligations to keep our children and their families safe, and to maintain the transportation infrastructure we need to keep Alaska's economy moving."
"The heavy lifting involved in writing the state budget is done by subcommittees, and this year the subcommittees and chairs have done an outstanding job of finding ways to meet Alaskans' important needs while achieving necessary reductions," Senator Parnell said.
The co-chairs said an important factor in the rapid work on the department budgets was the Legislature's decision to start from the common ground reached when the Legislature passed and the governor signed last fiscal year's operating budget.
The Senate Finance subcommittees' recommendations call for the state to spend a total of $2.109 billion from the General Fund in FY01 for state operations. This proposal is approximately $97 million less than what the governor had originally proposed.
The full Senate Finance Committee will hear public testimony on the subcommittee recommendations on Thursday, March 23, starting at 6 p.m. As in past years, the full committee will take testimony from Alaskans across the state via the state teleconferencing service, as well as in person at the Capitol in Juneau.
Budget Overview Highlights
= John Torgerson, 80 K = Sean Parnell, 15 K