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Governor Parnell Proposes Fiscal Year 2011 Budgets; Prioritizes Education, Public Safety, Transportation, Resource Development

December 14, 2009, Anchorage, Alaska - Governor Sean Parnell said today that his budget proposal for Fiscal Year 2011 promotes economic growth and opportunities for families. In the operating and capital budgets released today, the governor focused on the constitutional mandates for spending - on education, public safety, transportation and resource development.

The spending plan for FY2011 maintains budget discipline and limits growth of state agency operating budgets to just over 2 percent. The operating and capital budgets total $4.7 billion in state general funds. The operating budget fully funds K-12 education and increases law enforcement throughout the state.

Meanwhile, Governor Parnell proposes to spend less than the amount of revenue projected for the next fiscal year. For FY2011, the fall revenue forecast estimates a price of $76.35 per barrel of oil, with production at 623,000 barrels per day, yielding total unrestricted revenue of $5.24 billion. Based on the forecast, the governor's proposed spending level in FY2011 will result in a surplus of $500 million.

This overall general fund budget exceeds last year's because of formula-driven programs and other non-discretionary obligations, including  statutory increases in K-12 school funding, Medicaid formula increases, retirement system unfunded liability increases, debt service costs, employee contracts and increasing fuel prices. When federal funds, permanent fund dividends and other non-general funds are added, the budget proposal totals $10.5 billion.

The FY2011 capital budget focuses on resource development, infrastructure and investment, totaling $1.5 billion, including $309.6 million in state general funds.

"These capital dollars will fuel Alaska's economy and put Alaskans to work," Governor Parnell said. "We've included $85.4 million in the capital budget to leverage over $700 million in federal and other funds. This means improvements in transportation - highways, both land and marine, and aviation - as well as water and sewer projects and other vital infrastructure upgrades. We are also going to fix what we've got by including $100 million for the first year of a five-year deferred maintenance plan.

"This budget also recognizes that responsible resource development built Alaska and remains the foundation for our future prosperity. We must leverage our funds to fight for safe, sound development, and to promote private-sector investment and job creation."

The governor also proposes to forward fund K-12 education through a deposit of $1.1 billion in the Public Education Fund.

Other highlights of Governor Parnell's budget priorities:

School Major Maintenance - eight projects - $24.8 million
Domestic Violence & Sexual Assault Prevention - $7 million
Retirement system unfunded liability - $357.6 million
Oil and gas exploration tax credits - $180 million
Community Revenue Sharing - $60 million
Gas line projects - $177 million - including:
  • $150 million for the AGIA reimbursement fund; and
  • $6.5 million for in-state gas development
$85.4 million general fund match to leverage $718 million in federal and other funds including:

  • DOT&PF highway & aviation - $708 million
  • DEC Village Safe Water - $38 million
  • DEC municipal water/sewer - $23.2 million

Deferred maintenance - $100 million
Renewable Energy Grant fund - $25 million
State crime lab - $75 million
University of Alaska Life Sciences Building - $108.6 million

"I have been meeting with many legislators, community leaders and citizens over the past few months, and they all brought worthy projects and programs to the table," Governor Parnell said. "This budget I presented today is a starting point for public input. I look forward to working with fellow Alaskans and our Legislature throughout the legislative session."

Draft budget bills and more detailed information on the budget are available on the Office of Management & Budget Web site at http://omb.alaska.gov/

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