The 27th Alaska State Legislature, 2011 - 2012||
Press Release: House Majority Press
Day 19 Special Session Status Update
Posted: May 6, 2011
Contact: Will Vandergriff, 465-5284, House Majority Press Secretary
(Juneau) - With the first special session this year more than half over and no compromise on the capital budget, the House Majority will issue daily status reports from Juneau.
On Day 19 of the special session (Friday, May 6,) the House stood ready to accept legislation from the Senate, but none was forthcoming.
The day's business included:
- The House voted to accept a conference committee report on the state's operating budget, passing the $9 billion plan to fund government for the next year. The House had previously approved the budget March 10. Differences between the House version and the Senate's generated the conference committee. The Senate also checked off on the operating budget today. The bill now goes to the governor.
- The Senate Finance Committee hearing on "bills previously heard" - including the three outstanding items on the governor's special session call - was scheduled for 9:00 a.m. but never convened. Although the committee holds the bills still in play, it has met only three times during the 19 days of the special session. The committee has scheduled 9:00 a.m. hearings, and then waited until late in the day to cancel without hearing bills, 14 times during the special session.
- The House Special Committee on Energy and the Resources Committee held a 14-member joint hearing Friday on many of the capital budget energy projects boxed up in the Senate Finance Committee's contingency language. That language attempts to 'veto-proof' the projects as a single package, and has been the primary sticking point in negotiations with the Senate throughout the special session.
Gov. Parnell called the Legislature into a 30-day special session on April 18, the day after lawmakers adjourned the 90-day regular session without passing operating and capital budgets, among other time-sensitive items.
Included in the special session call were 10 bills, all of which were in the Senate's possession at the close of the regular session. Within days, the House and Senate approved five of those measures. Three of the five outstanding bills - the capital budget, the Alaska Performance Scholarship bill, and renewal of the Alaska Coastal Management Program - have not left the Senate Finance Committee. The operating and mental health trust budgets moved from a joint conference committee on May 4 and were passed by both houses today.
Per legislative process, the House is waiting to take action on the outstanding items once the Senate moves the bills out of the Finance committee, through a floor vote, and over to the House.
The House passed every measure on the Governor's special session proclamation during the regular session, except for the capital budget, which traditionally is first approved by the Senate.