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Letter to the Editor

Vetoes will damage Alaska

To the editor: It is essential for our Legislature to override all of governor Dunleavy’s vetoes.

The vetoes would cause major and long-lasting damage to the state of Alaska.

Government has an essential role in our lives at all levels. Our present governor does not understand that.

As a state we need to examine all sources of actual income as well as potential sources of income. We also need to examine expenditures, especially the tax breaks and credits to the oil industry (because they are the biggest) and the PFD (because it is an unknown and possibly the biggest expense).

The original way of calculating the PFD is incompatible with present-day reality. Giving everyone who spends a year in Alaska an unsustainable amount of money as a PFD, of which they send 20% to IRS, has to be carefully reconsidered. Rep. Adam Wool presented a good argument for a revised formula for calculating the dividend.

The governor is putting top priority on giving away money — this year $1.2 billion to Big Oil and a proposed $2.2 billion in an unsustainable PFD, for a total of $3.4 billion — rather than paying for basic state needs. This is not acceptable.

As one example, Alaska’s crime and domestic abuse is so out of control that the U.S. attorney general, after a visit to Alaska, awarded more than $10 million in federal funds to assist with Alaska’s “law enforcement emergency” (Daily News-Miner, June 29). This unprecedented federal action is being met with Dunleavy’s severe cuts to the state agencies that work on the problems involved. That should embarrass even Dunleavy.

“Standing tall and thinking small” does not work for Alaska.

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