Under federal law, I must certify that every stimulus dollar will create new jobs and stimulate the economy. I take that charge seriously. Accordingly, I’ve requested $514.4 million for capital projects that legitimately create new private sector jobs. Shovel-ready projects are certifiable because they put people to work and grow Alaska’s private-sector economy.
Unfortunately, a disproportionate percentage of the federal package available to Alaska would increase government operations. It’s a stretch to certify that more spending on more bureaucracy actually grows an economy.
When stimulus money runs out in two years, who will pay for the expanded government programs, when Alaska currently has a budget shortfall of over a billion dollars? My administration will not willingly and knowingly dig a hole for Alaskans to fill under this enormous, debt-ridden, Washington spending plan. That’s why public discussion on budget increases must happen through open, transparent legislative hearings so everyone is aware of the cost.
Some, enticed with as much Washington money as possible, assume this is free money. It is not. America is $11 trillion in debt. They also may fail to consider the level of federal intrusion. For example, Alaska’s communities would have to adopt building energy codes that compliment the most recent International Codes. These standards should be locally determined, not federally mandated. And, if we take additional unemployment compensation funds, Alaska would have to extend eligibility guidelines. This federal involvement locks us into government dependency for longer periods. Alaskans must read the fine print on these federal mandates, because certain allocations also require state-matching funds.
When Alaska was granted statehood, it was with the expectation that our independent, innovative spirit and rich resources would largely sustain us, rather than depending on federal government. Read More…
This is one governor that has a head on her shoulder. She is not falling for Obama’s hopes to get States so they have to depend on Washington and therefore be ruled by Obama!