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Monday, August 20, 2018
HomeTweets and CommentsGovernor’s chief of staff orders Senate to restore funding. ‘Now.’

Governor’s chief of staff orders Senate to restore funding. ‘Now.’

Borrowing a page from President Trump’s playbook, Gov. Bill Walker’s Chief of Staff Scott Kendall took to Twitter on Thursday to upbraid the Senate Majority.

Kendall ordered Sen. Majority Leader Peter Micciche to put $4.5 million back into the Department of Public Safety budget.

The governor in December had proposed a $34 million increase to public safety. The Senate, however, chose to trim that increase by 2.5 percent and instead spend more money on trooper salaries. That would mean the governor’s budget increase would come down to about $30 million more than FY18. But the money shows up elsewhere in the budget.

Hawkins

Still, Kendall ordered the Senate majority to “Grow up and put the funds back. Now.”

Kendall, an unelected functionary, might not have done his boss any favors in trying to start a Twitter war, an area of social media best left to experts, er, like the president.

And he might have wanted to hold his powder for a few more days; the Senate had just starting its work on the budget, having received it from the House only a day earlier.

“It appears he’s taken his legislative communication strategy straight from the White House,” one Juneau aide noted, but is doing so as an unelected functionary without the stature of the chief executive.

Sen. Peter Micciche said increases for public safety were rearranged as a result of a key trooper retention study completed in November that noted the difficulty the department is having keeping troopers. Keeping troopers saves money, because every new trooper hired costs the state administrative and training costs in excess of $80,000.

The senator said the first priority is to ensure that Alaska can compete for and retain the men and women in blue, so he added pay increases for them in the Dept. of Administration budget, and trimmed the governor’s proposal elsewhere.

Note to Micciche: Kendall is in full campaign mode again and no good deed will go unpunished by the Walker Administration which, judging by Kendall’s intemperate tweet, is itching for a fight with the appropriating body of the government.

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Suzanne Downing had careers in business and journalism before serving as the Director of Faith and Community-based Initiatives for Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and returning to Alaska to serve as speechwriter for Gov. Sean Parnell. Born on the Oregon coast, she moved to Alaska in 1969.

Latest comments

  • Let’s not forget that Walker was the one who cut all that he wants the Senate to re-instate in the DPS budget. Walker and his administration offer no solutions to the recruitment and retention problem plaguing the rank and file. He has failed the Troopers. Thank you Senator Micciche and the rest of finance for offering a meaningful solution to the recruitment and retention problem in the Troopers.

  • The bigger point is that President Trump is widely popular and so are his teeets among patriots. Gov. Walker is the least liked governor in the country and his anger and bombastic bully behavior clearly trickles from the top down.

    The same governor who wanted to pay teachers an incentive to do their job, stole half our PFDs to make up for the cuts that the Ds refused to make, let criminals out on the streets by refusing to veto SB91, drove the pipeline and the state into a ditch and cut Choose Respect, has the audacity to chastise the Senate for making cuts and accuse the Senate of not caring about our safety — while not waiting for the full story. The Senate did its homework and put the finds where they belong— in trooper retention, this saving is money and making us as safe as we can be with SB91 in place.

    By contrast, Gov. Walker, you cut Choose Respect. You refused to veto SB91 and by doing so, sent sex traffickers and other criminals loose. You put Alaskan women in fear for their safety and the safety of their kids. How much do you care about the safety of women and children in Alaska? The Senate gave more money to trooper salaries. What we really need is for you to keep the bad guys locked up so you’re not creating new monsters everyday.

    How about an apology to the Seante for accusing them while you have dirt on your hands? And to use your language: “Grow up and stop your temper trantrums and put our PFDs back. Now.”

    • Perhaps the Troopers would be better able to retain the good ones among them if a few of the useless ones among them were trimmed? Who wants to work in an organization where a few bad apples endanger the whole? I’m sure our village isn’t alone in being poorly represented by the Troopers…..not simply in being negligent in attendance, but also, at times, being overly zealous in trying to create something where nothing exists. (Arresting and transporting without legal grounds so that judges demand immediate release and paid return is hardly a good return for the budget dollars, not to mention highly inappropriate, even unethical.) Let them work with less until they better manage what they have.

  • Walker and his whole team need to be gone. They have done nothing but cry and moan about a Gas Pipeline that will never get built. It’s to expensive and no contracts. Keep saying no Senate. The only other thing he has done is grab our dividends.

  • WALKER is a thief and a big fat lair. Not to be trusted and needs to be voted out. As for that SB. 91. It should have been veto by Governor Walker, but he didn’t do that and now every good Alaskans fear because so much crime and criminal out on the street and not safe to leave your home anymore. As for that gas line that’s a big joke and will never be built as it cost to much. Walker can spend every Alaskans PFD on hiring a guy who gets more money then the President of the United States, plus he also gets bonus. No one should get a salary that big. The deal with China should never been as Alaskans our the losers as China gets a bigger percentage. PFD needs to be refunded to every Alaskan. Every thing Walker has done since he has been Governor makes me very angry and I can’t wait until Alaskans send him packing and the legislation that voted in his favor!!!

  • His Chief of Staff better be well advised not to float to much negativity or the Gas line money could dry up especially when they are spending money with no return on investment.

  • Mr. Kendall was probably just following orders. My personal experience suggests that it will not end well for him.

  • Kendall will leave in a few months not to worry he’s just a yes-man anyway!