• Forecast
  • News Tip
  • Categories
Temperature Precipitation
Estimated read time
1m 46s

Alaska delegates back bipartisan budget bill

By KTVA CBS 11 News 12:05 PM December 13, 2013

Both Sens. Begich and Murkowski spoke positively about the bill, and said while it’s not perfect, it’s better than nothing.

ANCHORAGE – Members of Congress passed a bipartisan budget deal for the first time in four years this week.

Alaska’s lawmakers were on board. Both Sens. Begich and Murkowski spoke positively about the bill, and said while it’s not perfect, it’s better than nothing.

It could be backlash from October’s government shutdown that sparked a spirit of compromise in lawmakers. Murkowski spoke about the bill Wednesday, and called the October impasse “inexcusable.”

“We clearly must avoid another government shutdown,” she said.

The budget is expected to land on the Senate floor as early as next week. After the bill passed the House, Begich said he appreciated the fact the bill would reduce the national deficit.

“It’s doing strategic cuts, it’s a balanced approach and ensures that we are eliminating programs that are just not necessary or are no longer needed in the federal government,” he said.

Murkowski said she also plans to support the budget bill.

“It continues us on the path of decreased spending which is good,” she said. “It helps avoid some of those very deep cuts to the defense budget which is an imperative.”

The bill decreases the deficit by $23 billion, and eases the deep cuts known as sequestration.

But it doesn’t extend unemployment benefits for more than a million out-of-work Americans, nor does it address what Murkowski calls the real cost-driver: mandatory spending. Congress also needs to address tax reform, Begich said, but the bill is a step in the right direction.

“It’s not a perfect bill, but let’s move something forward,” he said. “We now — for the first time in four years — have a strongly bipartisan piece of legislation.”

The bill is expected to pass the Democrat-controlled Senate with the support of both parties, and President Obama is expected to approve the budget, too. Begich cited recent Senate rule changes as one of the reasons for the break in Congressional gridlock. Filibusters can now be shut down by a simple majority vote, which Democrats already have.

Republicans objected to the rule change, and said it trampled on the rights of the minority party.

Latest Stories

  • News

    Diversity a theme at Walker transition conference in Anchorage

    by Shannon Ballard on Nov 22, 18:42

    It would be easy to have a closed-door discussion about the critical issues that face Alaska, but Gov.-elect Bill Walker says the conversation should belong to all Alaskans. “We get the best input the more people we have involved in the process,” said Walker. There is some risk associated with doing that. The bigger risk […]

  • Weather

    Evening News weather, Nov. 22

    by KTVA Weather on Nov 22, 18:20

    Clouds have invaded our space for the weekend with little moisture here in the Anchorage area. Daytime highs remain in the mid 30s with light winds as we head into Saturday night. Sunday brings more of the same conditions with increasing clouds across the Bowl. We’ll remain under this dry spell going into Thanksgiving. Sunshine […]

  • Sports

    UAA volleyball signs 2 Dimond players

    by KTVA Sports on Nov 22, 18:02

    A pair of Dimond Lynx are heading to the level of volleyball, but the trip is a short one.

  • News

    Government Hill gives back, continues holiday tradition for one resident

    by KTVA CBS 11 News on Nov 22, 17:02

      Putting up Christmas lights and decorations is a holiday tradition for Government Hill resident Jeff Fowler. “It started when we lived on the south end of town,” said Fowler. “One at a time, started buying them and when we moved here, new and more stuff just started showing up.“ Over the years, the grand […]

  • News

    Obama highlights Sitka School District’s efforts in technology

    by KTVA CBS 11 News on Nov 22, 13:00

    This week, the Sitka School District got a shout-out from President Barack Obama. Superintendent of Sitka Schools Mary Wegner was in Washington, D.C. on Wednesday, joining more than 100 superintendents from across the country gathered together at the White House for the ConnectED to the Future conference. The day-long event recognized some of the nation’s […]

  • News

    Fairbanks prisoner accused of soliciting murder

    by Associated Press on Nov 22, 12:01

    An imprisoned former chiropractor and gun dealer from Fairbanks has been accused of attempting to solicit the murder of federal officers while behind bars. The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner (http://goo.gl/VVMn92 ) reports Guy Christopher Mannino, 56, has been in prison since Oct. 2013 awaiting sentencing for federal weapons charges. The office of the U.S. Attorney says […]

  • News

    Alaska Gov.-elect Walker names full transition team

    by KTVA CBS 11 News on Nov 22, 11:47

    Gov.-elect Bill Walker has taken his first big step towards taking over the helm of outgoing Gov. Sean Parnell. Walker kicked off his transition conference Friday night at the Alaska Airlines Center. There, about 300 people showed up to hear the incoming administration’s overview of Alaska’s current financial situation. Walker was blunt in his address, saying […]

  • News

    5,000 toys to be delivered to tots around Alaska

    by KTVA CBS 11 News on Nov 22, 11:06

    Alaska Airlines and the U.S. Marines are getting into the holiday spirit and children around Alaska are reaping the benefits. Friday, Marines delivered nearly 5,000 toys to the airline’s cargo hanger to be shipped out to children across the state. As part of their annual Toys for Tots program, all of the gifts were donated […]