Gov. Walker May Intercede In Legislature To Stop Government Shutdown

Published: Jun. 2, 2017 at 9:04 PM AKDT
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Pointing out that the legislature is halfway through a 30 day special session, Governor Bill Walker said he called the legislature back to broker a compromise that fixes our fiscal crisis for good and closes this year's budget deficit.

Layoff notices went out to 19 thousand state employees yesterday; those would go into effect if a budget isn't in place by July 1st.

Walker said after meeting with leadership members from the House and Senate Majorities and Minorities, it's clear negotiations have reached a stalemate.

He said he and his team have started work on a compromise package from concepts currently on the table, and intend to present the compromise to all four caucuses next week.

As for the ongoing dialogue, it was tense in the state house today.

Rep. Dan Saddler (R) Eagle River, understands that a government shutdown will be a disaster for Alaska.

"We're here to do the people's business and the people's business is not being brought before us to do and that's very frustrating. It comes at a high cost to the public it comes at a high cost to the integrity and trust the people have in me and this body because we're waiting for the conference committee to do the budget so we don't have to stare over the abyss into the bleak darkness of a government shutdown."

Representative Les Gara (D) of Anchorage says education is more important than politics.

"I appreciate all of the accusatory press releases that have come from some of the folks that have just spoken but the real job is to put the state on a stable footing so children have a chance to succeed in school not just lose another 500 teachers and counselors which is in the budget that has been sent over to us by our colleagues in the senate."