Alaska Chamber Issues Statement on Governor's 2015 Proposed Budget
Official Statement from Rachael Petro, Alaska Chamber President and CEO
“Governor Parnell’s proposed 2015 budget is encouraging and represents a good first step in the right direction. With state spending doubling over the past decade, the Alaska Chamber believes that state spending levels are unsustainably high and damaging to future Alaskans.
We support a state budget with total General Fund spending of $5.5 billion or less, which is higher than years prior to Fiscal Year 2012, but significantly below spending levels approved for Fiscal Years 2012, 2013 and 2014.
The Governor’s budget proposes $1.3 billion less in General Fund spending and approaches what we think is sustainable. The proposed $3 billion payment from the Statutory Budget Reserve toward unfunded pension liabilities results in no General Fund expense in FY 2015 and lower fixed annual payments in the future. In today’s fiscal terms, however, this means that a baseline budget for next year (FY 2016) including the new lower fixed payment for the unfunded liability would be $6.3 billion.
To be successful, to grow the economy and support a strong future for Alaskans, business must live within our means. It is heartening to see the Governor use this principle to guide development of the state’s budget. We are committed to working with the Governor and members of the Alaska Legislature in support of a strong fiscal future for Alaska.”
About the Alaska Chamber
The Alaska Chamber, a private, non-profit corporation, operating since 1952, works to promote a positive business environment in Alaska. The Alaska Chamber is the voice of small and large business across the state with a Board of Directors comprised of 80 members representing all regions of the state. For more information, go to www.alaskachamber.com.