Divided they stand - Must Read Alaska
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Sunday, October 20, 2019
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Divided they stand

As the legislators walked into the Wasilla Middle School gymnasium to take their seats on Friday morning, the audience stood and cheered. And cheered. And cheered.

To the 200 conservatives who had come to support the 18 lawmakers who stayed in Wasilla rather than flying to Juneau, these elected Alaskans were heroes, and they received the heroes’ welcome.

On Friday, unlike Wednesday, security was beefed up in the gymnasium, with Wasilla police at every door and legislative staffers standing on watch.

Wednesday’s spectacle of the takeover of the meeting by unruly radicals didn’t repeat — no protesters were present on Friday.

Instead, every seat was filled with a supporter of the legislators who stayed in Wasilla. It was standing room only. The area for the legislators was cordoned off, and signs warned that no firearms or backpacks would be allowed — this was a middle school, after all.

[Read: Raging protesters take over legislative meeting in Wasilla]

The prayer was not disrupted on Friday, as it had been on Wednesday. The Pledge of Allegiance preceded a vocal performance by Adele Morgan of the Alaska Flag Song, and everyone cheered before taking their seats to observe democracy in action.

Sen. Mia Costello stood at the podium and announced the obvious: There was no quorum, but she reiterated that those present believed that the Special Session was to take place in Wasilla, where the governor had called it, which is why they all had determined to follow the law.

She said that negotiations were continuing with the governor and the two thirds of the Legislature that has been meeting in Juneau.

Meanwhile, in Juneau, both the Senate and House held separate technical sessions, with nine House members present and four Senate members present.

Their efforts to override the governor’s vetoes had failed and most members had left Juneau for the weekend. The Senate and House are adjourned until Wednesday.

The Democrat-led Majority in the House and the Senate leadership issued a press release on Friday that listed fall-out expected from the vetoes. They predicted dire consequences, such as:

  • The University of Alaska will meet Monday to start down the path of declaring financial exigency, effectively a bankruptcy proceeding, which could lead to hundreds of job losses, campus closures, and rushed liquidation of assets. Exact steps to deal with the $135 million reduction need to be identified by July 30.
  • Scholarships were abruptly revoked from 12,000 of the most qualified students in the UA system, many of whom lack resources to attend college otherwise.
  • Alaska’s most financially vulnerable elders who rely on Senior Benefits Program payments are doing without food and medication: 1,742 people with $942 monthly income or less lost out on a $250 payment as a result of the vetoes.
  • The Brother Francis Shelter in Anchorage is ending its day service, which provides case management and a clothing room for homeless people.
  • Nonprofit grant recipients are starved of resources, leaving service providers facing dire choices. Hospice of Anchorage, for example, is unable to bathe and feed dying people.
  • In mid-August, DOT will be forced to stop work on some highway projects already in progress during summer construction season, including on the Sterling Highway.
  • Without a compromise, there will be no Power Cost Equalization benefits this winter, dramatically increasing energy prices on rural residents.

The $444 million cut represents a 12.5 percent cut to the budget presented by Gov. Bill Walker, which had grown larger than the spending plan of the previous year.

Gov. Dunleavy has said that budgets must come into alignment with available revenues, and that Alaskans should get the full Permanent Fund dividend they are promised under Alaska law.

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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

  • DUNLEAVY STRONG!!!

  • DUNLEAVY STRONG!!!

  • Lots more could be cut. Why is Alaska a mortgage company (AHFC), or an investment bank (AIDEA). These and other agencies should be shut down. Why are ALL state employee not seeing wages cut and their benefits trimmed? Why do unions still exist, we can’t afford them any more? Why does the state employ economists (that fudge reports and lie to us), when the private sector could offer these services? Lots more could and should be cut.

    Glad UA is being fiscally spanked. Such an expensive university system that is garbage education compared to other state universities.

    • That’s why we elected Governor Dunleavy. To do the job no one else wants to do. Bill Walker was a joke of a governor.

    • Amen. And the entities taking such ‘drastic’ measures Suzanne lists above soon to be still playing political games. The cuts to UA were 17% of their budget – how does that necessitate bankruptcy?

      • Oh dear cellphone thumbpecking and wrong glasses – ‘lusts’ should be ‘lists’ ?

        • The no guns allowed because it’s a middle school comment was kind of misguided considering they have gun shows in these schools.

      • I’d like to know the answer to that also. It was my understanding that UA has billions of $ in Land acquisitions. Bankrupcty ? give me a break . Again learn to live within your means.

        • And why does the UA need such land? Turn it into a revenue stream for sustaining their program needs. As a publicly owned university, the public should demand these acquisitions liquidated for UA system sustainment.

        • UA owns residential properties that people turned over upon death. Start selling off those properties.

        • Here is their current land offering http://www.ualand.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=LandSales.Home they own a lot more, but they only want to sell a couple pieces at over market value.

    • All of this could have been avoided if the legislature, instead of bickering over who was in charge, would have presented a timely and fiscally responsible budget to the Governor. If there is any blame to assign, it is to the legislature for not being fiscally responsible in the first place.

  • So, these dire consequences are predicted, but are not yet in progress? The way the points are written is a little confusing. Are hospice clients already being starved and without bathing as they die? Are seniors already doing without food and medicine? Is the University of Alaska bankrupt? (If so, why? Could it have anything at all to do with exorbitant salaries of admins?) Really, is DOT going to leave construction projects half-way done, just abandon them? Twelve thousand scholarships already revoked? That’s not what I heard elsewhere.

    Anyway, if these are things predicted, the “fallout” of the cuts, how is it most are written as if they have already happened? Please clarify.

    By-the-way, as a low-income senior with little hope of financial increase in the future, I still support the cuts. We all have to live within our means, PFD, or no PFD.

    • I am with you!! I agree on every point and I despise the scare tactics that are being used to make those who believe everything these folks say. There are ways, going forward to mitigate some of the concerns. I, too, am a senior who, at 75 years old, find myself with a retirement that is inadequate but is adequate enough to keep me from qualifying for any public funding. I wouldn’t apply anyway. I do work a part time job to supplement my income and allow me a reasonably comfortable life. I support all the cuts and I know that only a certain faction of the people would consider some of the options listed. If the Legislators leave the PFD alone and pay us the amount that should be paid out, this year that would be the equivalent of $250 per month and will continue to go up as long as the stock market and the economy continues to go up. I agree with you, however, we all have to live within our means, PFD or no PFD and we will.

    • The budget was supposed to begin July 1, that means that for 10 day or so nonprofits like Hospice have been spending money they don’t have. Shutting down had to happen. The same is true of the elderly. In addition it will be close to September 1 before even limited State money gets distributed because of the late final allegation.

  • Now They are proposing at 1,600.00 PFD and attachment to the ERA for future use! How can this be okay? Are they all coming together in Anchorage as one group, including the Legislators that have been meeting in Wasilla?

    • Yes, all coming together in Anchorage to take testimony yet again about the PFD, but the ones in Juneau have called for the “big guns” Unions, UAA, native corporations, Beltrain’s “croonies” to show up

  • DUNLEAVY STRONG!!!

  • But, as Bert Stedman says “We gotta make payroll”.

  • If/When the Legislative Outlaws in Juneau get off their high horses and show up for work where they have been summoned to, then much of these consequences will be rendered false claims. They are quickly remedied with attention to their job: authorization of the reverse sweep; passing item specific funding for the critical needs of vetoed programs; UA leadership can get busy leading; And the House should consider a vote of no confidence in their failing Speaker.

  • Of course all of the cuts are being made where they will do the most public damage. A UAA Administrator’s salary couldn’t be reduced by 5 or 10% as mine was in the public sector during an economic downturn.

    • You’ve got your talking point turned around. The department’s work for the Governor. The only place that not the case is over at the UA. Most of the public damage is due to the vetoes and sweeps. All Governor Dunleavy.

      • The vetoes will help the private sector as they reduce the size and scope of government. The sweep, and in particular the lack of a reverse sweep this year, has nothing to do with this or any Alaska Governor. Personally I would not mind seeing a phase-out of PCE, and many other programs that were not swept are gamed by Alaskans so the lack of a reverse sweep is not all bad. But it’s inaccurate to blame the Governor.

        • Hey derpity, what precisely is Government doing in Alaska to keep the private sector down?

          .

          Sweeping the Power Cost Equalization is going to hurt hundreds of the Mom and Pops.

          .

          The 80’s of Tip O’Neal called. They want their stale and moot talking point back.

  • The vetoes have absolutely no bearing on DOT projects. Just saying…

  • I relocated w/my family to Alaska on May 11, 1995, having left the state of California before it fell into a complete takeover of the Democrat liberals and the insanity that has now devoured the SOC. The current political meltdown in California is a glimpse of what America will become (and worse) if the “Radical Liberal Psychopaths” like Nancy Pelosi, Maxine Waters, Diane Feinstein, and their Governor Gavin Newsom, along with all those, who like rabid dogs follow after that agenda are ever handed over control of Washington, you could then say “The End Begins”! Tax and Spend, Tax and Spend, that’s essentially what liberals do…w/no end insight, this is what/who the liberals in the Alaska legislature are, accompanied by some wayward AND deceived republicans!

    The unrelenting gridlock in politics, and attack on conservatives, and ANY President OR Governor who installs, or attempts to install badly needed conservative changes to bring about a robust economy (and much more) for ALL Americans to enjoy is just the “beginning of woe’s” that Americans w/strong family/christian, conservative, and patriotic values are subjected to, and America as a whole will suffer the ravages of such a demise!

    The current gridlock in Alaska, manufactured mostly by career Alaskan democrats AND some republicans in the House AND Senate, while throwing all the freshman House and Senate representatives “under the bus” looks a lot like how ALL the congressional democrats, and some congressional republicans do as well…doing business as usual!

    The Alaska representatives who “green-lighted” the SOA government to “Grow beyond it’s income threshhold” WITH the blessing of Former Gov. Bill Walker are responsible for misleading AND deceiving all the entities who have been “Reaping the Benefits” of this OVER-SPENDING.

    Our Gov, Mike Dunleavy, now has the job of attempting to CLEAN-UP the financial disaster perpetrated on ALL Alakans, AND the SOA as a whole from the “Gross Irresponsible Spending” for years by those in the State legislature, and now they have become “Lawless” by thumbing their collective noses at the Gov. after having “Lawfully” called for the previous “special session” to be held in Wasilla…and they call themselves responsible? What an embarrassment “those so called” leaders have become, collectively they are attempting to drag Alaska into “financial ruin”, and NOW w/their backs against-the-wall they want to “Make a Deal” w/the Gov. or “Plea Bargain” as CRIMINALS do to avoid a more dire sentence…how appropriate is that!!

    Question is this: what can the Gov. do to alleviate the cuts that can’t be over-ridden by what’s left of those who have been responsible for, and are now attempting to continue the fiscal irresponsibility? There is STILL a $600 MILLION DEFICIT after the Governor’s “line item veto’s”! The House and Senate Rat’s are scurrying just like the congressional Rat’s do in order to find something they can pony-up to “Make-a-Deal”. The PFD can’t be a bargaining chip because the Alaska statutes concerning existing LAW have been railroaded by many of those who now represent the opposition in the legislature, ultimately stealing what was due all Alaskans, an unlawful act by those who “lawfully” represent all Alaskans! There are some expenditures of the budget that should be restored w/additional cuts in-order to restore those needs.

    Alaska’s financial gridlock can all be attributed to the Alaska House/Senate Democrats, and Democrat Gov.’s, along w/moderate Republicans who are easily coaxed into following the crooks and deceivers down the path where we are now. Just like Democrat congressional representatives, they must “misrepresent the truth w/lies” to deceive the multitude that will believe what they are “told to believe”. The Democrat Party IS THE PARTY of LIES, and DECEPTION, continually deceiving while being deceived! Thank God for men like Gov. Mike Dunleavy, AND all the representatives who followed the LAW and convened the LAWFUL special session in Wasilla, who HAVE THE BACK BONE to represent what is TRUE and HONEST and stand-up against all those who consider themselves “legislative leaders”, WHO have themselves broken the law repeatedly…they have ALL lost their collective CREDIBILITY, and deserve to be removed by vote, or recall!! What a shame that we are forced to tolerate such LAWLESSNESS and DECEPTION from Alaska legislators!!

    • If you ever paid a tax to the State of Alaska your rant might have a point.

      .

      More Alaskans = nothing but more expenditures no matter how you slice it.

      .

      All boats rise on the tide. But Alaskans are anchored to the bottom.

      • Cutting the PFD amounts to a tax on all Alaskans! My rant as you call it is just the facts surrounding all the Irresponsible spending coming out of the legislature w/the previous administration. Liberals LIKE YOU have no answers for anything, you are the problem w/lots of useless rhetoric you blow out, you refuse to acknowledge where the problems started and then find fault w/conservatives who attempt to correct the problems. Sucks to be you cause in the end-run liberals ALWAYS loose because your not principled, liars, and deceivers of the multitudes, and if you didn’t have a “double standard” you wouldn’t have any standards at all! Since you don’t have any REAL honest, and truthful solutions then you should just shut the hell up!!

        • Lionel, the taking of PFDs is clearly regressive (since it takes from the poor more relative to their incomes) but is not a tax as determined by our Supreme Court. You don’t like it but that doesn’t change things as they stand.
          Maybe you’ll want to get behind a progressive income tax that takes more from the rich (and something from nonresidents). Heheh!

          • The PFD has nothing to do with a persons income, to link the two in anyway is asinine.

          • Steve-O, I wouldn’t expect you to know a single thing about whether something is regressive, or not. The taking of those PFDs are regressive because each individual gives up the same amount regardless of their status or income. Similarly a flat tax is considered regressive.

          • Bill,

            When you take equally from all that is called equality. When you give equally to all that is called equality. Don’t take my word for it, review the history of the PFD and the Supreme Court if you disagree. The PFD is not contingent upon income, to link the two is asinine.

          • Except nobody is linking the two Four-flusher.

          • Bill,

            Do you ever read what you write? You linked the two right up there^

            Here is what you wrote “the taking of PFDs is clearly regressive (since it takes from the poor more relative to their incomes)”

            Linking incomes and the PFD is asinine.

          • Steve-O (er Four-flusher) it must be an issue to be both ignorant and a four-flusher. Whether you like it or not, the federal taxes on PFDs are not equal-they are based on the individual’s marginal rate.
            This is known as a progressive income tax rate schedule where the larger incomes pay at an increased rate. Thus, equal payments (like PFDs) are not treated equally and your thinking that is asinine is your problem. Tough noogies.

          • Now you’re talking about federal taxes? The PFD is not paid out based upon federal taxes Bill. You’re really stretching there.

          • Yessir Four-flusher, I’m talking about Federal Taxes and even though the PFD payments are equal the taxes on them are not equal.
            No stretching at all and no linking either.
            Like I said, it must be tough to be both ignorant and a four-flusher but you go ahead and struggle on. Heheh!

        • I’m not a liberal in the least pumpkin. I’m also not a delusional libertarian who thinks that living in Alaska means the government owes me free services and money.

  • the democrat majority will always whine that the sky is falling. if they were truly leaders they would get to work eliminating the fluff and keeping the essential services. the university should have been working since Johnson became the president on being more efficient but they have not, instead they lost accreditation for education program at UAA. no one should go outside – the sky is falling (not)

  • Liberals always say it’s the end of the world if they don’t get their way. Whether it’s Trump’s election, Scott Walker’s reforms in Wisconsin, Brexit, tax cuts, Kavanaugh. What they are freaking out and being hysterical about is their political defeat. The actual consequences to ordinary people who aren’t on the gravy train cultivated by the Democratic Party? Things get better on the whole for them.

    • Remember when Obama was elected and then the following 8 years when the “conservatives” lost their minds? The Presidential tan suit scandal shook the country to its core.

  • I wonder if the Dunleavy strong bots realize that the PFD has not been approved and that his he to get it though a legislature that he has angered and alienated at time his poll numbers are in the trash?

    • Can anyone say “Capital Budget”. The derp is strong in the recently arrived PFD carpetbaggers.

    • I reckon that we “Dunleavy strong bots”, whatever the hell that means, are much more aware of any and all ramifications than all you know nothing doom sayers crying the blues over budget cuts. Logic vs emotion, facts vs rhetoric…when the chips are down I’ll take fiscal sanity over screaming hordes of takers and users any day. Go Dunleavy, see you all in Wasilla.

      • Glad to see you value logic over emotion and facts over rhetoric. Perhaps we can engage in a fact based conversation?
        ***
        I believe that education pays for itself and it benefits the state more than it costs. There is a reason why places like Boston and Austin have so many start ups cities in Mississippi don’t. Here is my evidence — care to refute it? https://www.nber.org/papers/w22501
        ***
        Medicaid expansion all but pays for itself. Here is my evidence from the noted left wing blog Forbes:
        ***
        https://www.forbes.com/sites/brucejapsen/2018/03/18/how-medicaid-expansion-pays-for-itself/#7ed78a1f5fdd

        • Explain then the need for 17 campuses, the outlandish per student outlay, and the trove of overpaid administrators in relation to the loss of accreditation and a laughable graduation rate of 8%. Another perfect example of bloat and entrenched waste that won’t even be missed a year from now. Yes, logic over emotion.

          • So you didn’t read my sources then? You’d prefer that we return to your talking points?

          • I see. So for your side they are sources, but for my side they are just talking points.
            What page is that on in “Rules For Radicals”?

      • Well Kerry, your “see you all in Wasilla” is nothing but a joke now since Dunleavey has caved and called for the session to convene in Juneau.
        Now finally we are seeing some fiscal sanity. Heheh!

  • The loss of day services at the St Francis Shelter is due to the end of a current grant (expiration), not the cuts. I’m sorry I don’t have the source for that info.

    • Partly true Cheryl but as you can see in this article, they will lose about $350k from budget cuts.
      https://www.adn.com/alaska-news/anchorage/2019/07/12/anchorages-biggest-homeless-shelter-closes-during-the-day-braces-for-drastic-budget-cuts/

      • That ADN story stated that the grant money dried up two years ago but they kept the service going anyway. CSS is nowhere near as dependent on state money as other organizations (for example, Rural CAP). Even so, they couldn’t sustain the level of service, or at the very least sustain their existing budgets, without state support. Regardless, if you really need clothing, you’re better off getting it from the Rescue Mission (Monday and Friday afternoon). Trust me on that. Jubilee over on Karluk Street also has a clothing closet which is a better bet than what BFS offered.

        • What was your point, Sean??
          Here’s another article that might help you out: /www.ktoo.org/2019/07/11/who-are-the-100-if-budget-vetoes-stand-anchorage-shelter-says-it-must-choose-who-stays-and-who-leaves/

          • You appear stuck on this week’s headlines. CSS’s plan was known over three months ago (see http://mustreadalaska.com/catholic-social-services-opposes-dunleavy-budget posted here on March 22). The exception was ending day services, announced on the afternoon of the 5th as taking effect on the 9th. What I referred to when talking about clothing was the press release quoted in this story, which stated in part “provides case management and a clothing room”. Other services were perhaps more vital. For example, you’ll see many homeless toting around backpacks or suitcases, so they can maintain some sort of wardrobe and appear presentable in public. If they can’t access laundry or showers, there’s hardly any point in carrying around those clothes.

          • Like I mentioned earlier Sean, what was your point?

    • It’s interesting that people who are usually so concerned with separation of church and state are using CATHOLIC Social Services as a sword to fall upon when it comes to STATE spending. Maybe the City of Anchorage should do more with all the money they have sitting around to support their homeless problem.

  • One feature we see in governments dominated by multinational oil companies?

    .

    Dictatorships.

    .

    Like clockwork.

    • I recently watched a documentary series on Amazon Prime called “Ice Race” and what struck me the most was how similar rural Alaska is to rural Russia…of course over there they have “Oligarchs” but they operate in the same was as our “Senators”…supported by lobbyists for big oil and not interested in the indigenous voices who oppose their “modus operandi” of development.
      Sadly, many landscapes once considered scared by indigenous people of eastern Russia are now grossly contaminated due to oil and pipeline spills with NO regulations to halt this paradigm.
      Hopefully Alaskans can find a platform to help us maintain clean water and air as this state cuts more and more regulatory policies to provide “enticing” conditions for global energy conglomerates to operate.

    • Good thing we have a government structure that doesn’t allow for dictatorships. Even if some misguided and ill-informed people would compare our governor to Adolf Hitler.

      • Yeah, that von Imhoff is a real Trotskyist ain’t she?

        • Von Imhoff is a stooge playing the part. She complains about a failing democracy all while in complete defiance of how our democracy actually works. She should have reported to the legal location of the special session if she wanted her crocodile tears to have any impact. Hopefully you can see the idiocy in that.

          I was also referring to how our friend Steve here likened the governor to “the Fuhrer” on another article.

          • Four-flusher, your premise that Juneau was illegal is just your opinion, nothing else.

          • The Chiwaaaawaaaa taps again……..

  • About time someone stood strong to this madness

  • Do Alaskan care about Alaskans anymore? Most jobs in Alaska are humanitarian. I would rather pay taxes and give my dividend than see thousands of Alaskans lose their jobs. Taking away higher education, not caring about the poor, taking away scholarship funds?? Not investing in roads?? Is Alaska such a greedy place to not give to the poor and take away money from those who were pioneer’s? Take away money from those who gave them a foundation to stand on? How cold hearted can alaska get?

    • What a crock of drivel!

    • Pick. Click. Give

    • Greed like a religion. Gordon Gecko meets ‘MURICA!

    • The supporters of the vetoes call themselves conservatives but they’re not — they’re classic authoritarians. Traditional values, worship of strength, contempt for the weak, tough mindedness, submissive obedience, reliance on stereotypes, scapegoating and a desire to destroy.
      ***
      https://medical-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/authoritarian+personality
      ****

      • Painting with a broad brush much? Less government=authoritarianism strange logic there but it also demonstrates the lengths so folks will go to. Keep it up the more you say the more you hurt your cause. I really enjoy the nonsense you big government folks spout when minor cuts to your lifeblood come about.

      • Lots of regulation on the oil fields. Unless you have worked up there you probably don’t know. Lots of misinformation about the oil fields and spills. 2 main spills I think about are Exxon Valdez and the man who shot the pipeline.

    • Yes, all coming together in Anchorage to take testimony yet again about the PFD, but the ones in Juneau have called for the “big guns” Unions, UAA, native corporations, Beltrain’s “croonies” to show up..

  • The leftist/dim profusion of accusations, refusal to see reality, thirst for more, misrepresenting facts, misleading citizens, attacking our Governor, etc., is disturbing, to say the least. These actions and deeds are not Alaskan. They are imported by the nationwide “movement” to undermine, overwhelm and destroy the American/Alaskan way of life. Prevarication (lying) is the rule of the day. Disrespect, insults, intimidation and outright civil disobedience go with the socialist mantra/dogma (as seen in Wasilla). Those 12,000 “scholarships” are a huge misnomer. Granted, a percentage of the “scholarships” are for outstanding achievement, academic excellence and ambition to make America and Alaska better. However, the large percentage are grants, made up of ‘public’ funds handed out by UA, specifically for obedient “students” to attend further leftist indoctrination at UA, not scholastic achievement. All the seniors are gonna die? The roads will fall apart? No ‘power cost equalization (subsidizing fuel costs for remote communities), that has been addressed by Governor Dunleavy? The starving won’t be fed? Come on. The truth shall prevail, when all is said and done. Stay informed and aware, Alaskans. Don’t be deceived by the “sky is falling”, misleading words of the left. Notice they (leftists) choose the worst possible scenario, not the truth, in every situation, to promote their agenda of panic, fear and spending Alaska into oblivion. The way of life in a socialist society. That society relies on fear, lies, intimidation, no private property or businesses, and complete reliance on the “state” for survival. Is that for Alaska? I don’t think so. Not for me, anyway.

    • DUNLEAVY STRONG!

    • 5hats funny I just heard Governor Dunleavy wax long about the wonderous benefits of the biggest of government boondoogles. A real fiscal conservative.

    • I kind of want to frame this one. Equally full of contradictions and confidence. So the “dims”, the people who refuse to see reality, the people who will not tell the truth are engaging in “Disrespect, insults . . ”
      ***
      Do you hear yourself? Do you imagine that ‘dims’ is an expression of respect?

      • clown,

        Respect where respect is due.

      • Clown……go call your mama….

  • No offense to the senior population in Alaska, but every time that I see a picture of “Conservatives” supporting the Governor it reminds me of an AARP meeting in western Florida.
    Where are the millennium and Gen X populations at?
    I understand that the Governor’s policies are most inline with the retired public employees, but let’s face it…there are 44 years between age 18 and 62….which leaves quite a few Alaskans separated in their opinions and beliefs…finding a way to unite the younger disenfranchised people will be tougher than maintaining a voting “base” as we move forward together.

    • Senior benefits at one time were called Longevity benefits to help those who PAID STATE INCOME TAXES and made our state as it is today. Benefits are from $175 to $250. Attorneys Zobels sued the state changing any program based on how long one lives in our state being unconstitutional. I was born in Fairbanks in 1946 twelve years before statehood. I’ve lived through many loser governors and this current governor is scary.

  • Interesting development with the courts refusing to expediate the case Vezey brought against our rogue legislators.

    I hear from a reliable source that the courts are going to reduce hours in order to make up the funds for their pay increase. The ridiculous part of this is that they are targeting those reductions on Wasilla and Palmer. The presiding judges are taking their budget veto out on the people.

    • Not a good idea to punish the courts when you may need them on your side to fight a lawless legislature

    • I’m not surprised. The Alaska court system is probably one of the most corrupt in the USA. Without going in to any depth, one only needs to look at the recent letter sent (and unsigned) by the AK Supreme court to the legislature asking them to override the governor’s veto of the court system’s cost of living increase.

  • As Suzanne previously pointed out, the AK Supreme Court wouldn’t be able to hear the case because the justices, all of them, have already made prejudicial statements on the issue to the press.

    • Your opinion only Marla and you know what is said about everyone having one!

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