State of the State: Now is the Time for Alaska to Control its Own Destiny
Highlights leadership of Walker-Mallott Administration; optimistic about Alaska’s future
Alaska Governor Bill Walker makes his State of the State Address.
Image courtesy of the Office of the Governor
Governor Bill Walker, this evening in his fourth State of the State Address, called on lawmakers to enable Alaska to control its own destiny by resolving our fiscal challenges during the legislative session that is now under way.
“Even with the challenges ahead, I remain the eternal optimist, and there is good reason for optimism,” Governor Walker said. “We have all the tools to control our own destiny and build a safer, smarter, stronger Alaska.”
Governor Walker also outlined some of his Administration’s accomplishments over the past few years, including:
- Alaska LNG Project – The State leads the project for the first time, and the Joint Development Agreement – signed with the presidents of the U.S. and China at the table – puts the project the closest to reality it’s ever been.
- Tribal Child Welfare Compacting – The administration has taken the historic step of returning child welfare services for Alaska Native children to their tribes and communities.
- Addressing the Fiscal Crisis – The Governor has proposed an array of solutions to achieve a balanced budget. The House has also passed a comprehensive fiscal plan. Both chambers have approved a measure to sustainably spend Permanent Fund earnings to help pay for government while also protecting the future of the dividend program.
- Medicaid Expansion – Because of the Governor’s leadership, nearly 40,000 Alaskans gained access to healthcare.
- Climate Action Leadership Team – With the effects of climate change visible across our state, the Governor has developed a lasting climate policy that will guide the state into a new era.
- Public Safety Action Plan – The Administration has developed a 68-point plan to address the uptick in crime we see in many communities across our state.
One of the Governor’s key priorities this year is to permanently change the way work is done in the Capitol by enacting his proposed budgetary reforms and transparency measures – including his legislation that would enact pay freezes if they ever push the state to the brink of a government shutdown again.
“We can work together, we must, and we will,” Governor Walker said.