Information on Alaska Capital and Operating Budgets

Alaska’s Fiscal Year 2015 Budgets.

Funding for new fiscal year which begins July 1st.

Where Does Alaska’s Money Go?

The state’s Operating Budget controls the day-to-day expenses of running the state, including staff, office supplies and the telephone bill.

The Capital Budget determines what is spent on infrastructure and big ticket items like buildings and trucks. I tell people to think of the Capitol Building, where the legislature meets.

That Capitol Building is spelled with an “O” while the Capital Budget uses an “A”. If they do work on the building or decide to build a new one, the money for the Capitol Building would be in the Capital Budget.

A third budget that you hear mentioned is the Mental Health Trust Budget. State statute requires that mental health funding be presented in a separate appropriation bill, making it easier to track what funds the state invests in that area.

The Operating Budget is HB266.                 How much does Alaska have in Savings?

The Mental Health Budget is HB 267.

And the Capital Budget is SB 119.


Understanding Alaska’s Budget  –  A great source of simple-to-understand materials on the budget and how it works. Lots of colorful charts, pies and graphics.  Site was commissioned by the legislature to help Alaskans understand the budget.

Ballotpedia — Quick overview of budget with lots of links to sources.

Alaska’s Mental Health Trust Fund Budget — The lesser known “third” budget the Alaska Legislature approves.

Alaska Office of Management and Budget — Home Page, links to more on right and in header at top of page.

OMB Links for 2015 Operating, Capitol Budgets — With links to 20-million pages of information and backup data.

Glossary of Budget Terms — In case you get confused reading through those 20-million pages of information and backup data.

Our spending per person is higher than any other state. It is worth noting that states with smaller populations generally have high per capita spending.

Citizen’s Guide to Alaska Budget — (Opens in PDF format) One of those old goodies from the Legislature that explains how the process works.

Swiss Army Knife Guide to Alaska Budget Process –  (Opens in PDF format)

You have not lived until you’ve read through the Swiss Army Knife.  It was updated in 2012,  so it’s pretty snazzy compared to the old classic version. This a “Classic” for all the right reasons.

It’s what the Alaska Legislature uses to teach staff and new legislators about how the budget process works.

What is Happening in Juneau Today and Tomorrow

Keep Checking Back Here to see a Quick Summary of Bill Activity

Updated Several Times Per Day

Morning Minutes – Provided by the House Majority Republican Caucus

Shows listings of bills, where they are, what action was taken–both in committee and on House Floor, and what to expect the next day.


     Senate Night Notes – Provided by Senate Majority Republican Caucus

Daily summary of Senate Activities including committees, Floor session and what to expect the next

Alaska Senate Democrats News Room

The Senate Minority’s take on what’s happening in the Legislature and with different bills.


Alaska House Democrats Website

This takes you to home page of House Minority’s website, includes recent Press Releases and Commentary.


How to tell which bills have been passed by the Alaska Legislature

How to tell which bills have been passed by the Alaska Legislature

It’s easy to see which bills have been passed by the Alaska Legislature. It’s all in a listing on one of the search pages.

The only tricky part is knowing which session to look at. For this legislative session, choose the option for Second Session.

That is because there are two parts to each numbered legislature. We are in the second session of the 28th Alaska Legislature.

Here is the link to the table of Bills/Resolutions Passed, followed below by the way to get there if you don’t have a link.

This Table of Bills Passed shows bills passed by Both the House and the Senate. That means, that unless they are Vetoed by Governor Parnell, these bills will become law.

How to get to Bills Passed Listing if you don’t have the direct link:

Here is the link to the Home Page of the Legis Site — the Alaska Legislature’s official, non-partisan site. They call it the Legis Site because that’s how the URL starts:

Got to Legis Page, then to Searches, then Passed Legislation, Click the Dot for “Bills/Resolutions Passed Second Session.” Then Click “Display,” and the next page is a list of bills and resolutions passed as of the time you did the search.

If you prefer to see what JUST the House or JUST the Senate have passed, you can Click the appropriate Dot.

Here’s a tip for using the site when it gets really busy–like the last day of session and the day after session ends.

You will find that the Legis Site gets clogged up and hard to get onto.  I’ve found it’s easier sometimes to go in through what I call a back door. Here is how to do it:

Go to the site sometime BEFORE the final days. When you go to the site, bookmark all the pages you hit as you go in searching around.  Wander around a bit and bookmark pages as you go. That way, if you find you can’t get onto the site some other time you try, bypass the Home Page entirely by going to one of those bookmarked pages.

It may be my imagination, but at times it’s a lot easier to get onto an odd-ball page than it is to get onto the Home Page. Once you’re into the site, it’s easy enough to move around. It’s the getting into the Home Page that can be very difficult at times.  This has worked for me every time.

House approves measure to control drones

We’ll have more later, but for now here is link to Sponsor Statement for House Bill 255.
Sponsor Statement HB 255


Governor Parnell: State must pay down pension debt

Alaska State of the State Address 2014

Photo from Gavel Alaska’s video of Alaska 2014 State of the State Address.

The LegHead Report Radio Show for Thurs. Jan 23 State Pension Funding


Alaska’s financial situation is secure, but there is one huge debt looming over Alaskans that must be dealt with. That was a key statement from Alaska Governor Sean Parnell in his State of the State Address to a joint session of the Alaska Legislature.

The big debt is unfunded state pensions and if it is not tackled soon Alaskan will struggle to keep up with an ever-growing burden that sucks more and more available funds from other budget items.

Gov. Sean Parnell’s comments in State of State Address 2014 courtesy of Gavel Alaska.

Governor Sean Parnell speaking during Wednesday’s State of the State Address to the Alaska Legislature. Thanks to Gavel Alaska for today’s audio.


360 North / Gavel Alaska video of Alaska State of the State Address 2014



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