The Alaska Department of Revenue issued the following statement in response to the revision of the State’s outlook from “stable” to “negative” by Moody’s Investors Service:
“The Alaska Department of Revenue was informed earlier today that Moody’s Investors Services has revised its outlook for the State of Alaska from stable to negative because of what it describes as “political paralysis,” a term used to explain the current gridlock in the Alaska Legislature.
“The rating service cited an extended regular session, two special sessions, significant uncertainty on the capital budget and the amount of this year’s Permanent Fund Dividend. While the operating budget was already finalized, the Legislature continues to consider approving additional appropriations.
“Rating agencies are generally agnostic to the levers that are pulled by states as long as they result in a fiscal course that leads to a balanced budget.
“The State of Alaska remains a highly rated entity at AA from both Fitch ratings and Standard and Poor’s and an Aa3 from Moody’s Investors Services. The Dunleavy Administration will make every effort to achieve a balanced budget and maintain these strong ratings.
“Moody’s negative outlook can be revised if the Legislature provides a balanced budget and ends this ‘political paralysis.’ ”