• Forecast
  • News Tip
  • Categories
Temperature Precipitation
Estimated read time
2m 28s

Senators unveil $1.9 billion capital budget proposal

By Rhonda McBride 10:15 AM April 7, 2014
JUNEAU –

The Senate Finance Committee rolled out a  $1.9 billion capital budget on Monday morning; a decrease of about $2.2 million from last year.

Overall, the budget focuses on deferred maintenance and completion of existing projects. Throughout the session, lawmakers have expressed reluctance to spend money on new projects.

But the budget did include $10 million for the Susitna-Watana hydro project. Gov. Sean Parnell had asked for $42.7 million, but said the balance was contingent on a land access deal between the Alaska Energy Authority and the CIRI Alaska Native corporation. An agreement has been reached, but focus on a liquefied natural gas project may push the dam to the back burner.

Another big-ticket item not included yet in the budget, but likely to be added later, is a new power plant for the University of Alaska Fairbanks. The cost for this project is estimated at $245 million. It’s not clear how much of this the university will receive.

Once the Senate approves the capital budget, the House will take a crack at it and will likely add some items into it. Then the two bodies will meet to merge their spending plans.

In a breakdown by districts, the capital budget spends about $212 million in Anchorage, $146 million for the Mat-Su, $85 million for Juneau and $32 million for Fairbanks.

Some of the big ticket items for Anchorage and Mat-Su area:

  • $45.6 million, UAA Engineering Building
  • $12 million, UAA campus deferred maintenance
  • $11 million, Matanuska-Susitna Borough, rail extension to Port MacKenzie
  • $8 million, Loussac Library
  • $7 million, Blood Bank of Alaska, facilities and services expansion
  • $5 million, Matanuksa-Susitna Borough, Bogard Road extension
  • $5 million, Akeela Development Corporation, public inebriate anti-recidivism treatment program
  • $5 million, Anchorage Museum at Rasmuson Center, Alaska Gallery redesign and rennovation
  • $4.2 million, UAA deferred maintenance
  • $4.1 million, Anchorage Water and Wastewater Utility
  • $2 million, Houston Fire Station and equipment
  • $2 million, Fairbanks Northstar Borough, heating device air quality mitigation
  • $1 million, Abused Women’s Aid in Crisis, expansion

A sampling of capital project spending elsewhere around Alaska:

  • $51.5 million, Village Safe Water
  • $37.5 million, State Library and Museum Project
  • $31.5 million, Kwethluk K-12 replacement school
  • $18 million, Kwigillingok Airport
  • $17 million, Seward Airport
  • $11.6 million, St. Mary’s School District, Andreafski High School gym construction
  • $11.9 million, U.S. Army Guard, deferred maintenance
  • $10 million, U.S. Army Guard Construction, contingency
  • $5.5 million, Northwest Arctic Borough, high school residential program and Northwest Magnet School
  • $5 million, Alaska Digital Teaching Initiative, three-year demonstration project
  • $5 million, Department of Corrections, deferred maintenance and repairs
  • $3.3 million, Southeast Alaska Power Agency, Swan Lake Hydroelectric Project Reservoir
  • $3 million, Nome, port improvements
  • $1.7 million, Mt. Edgecumbe High School, deferred maintenance
  • $1.3 million, Kodiak Regional Aquaculture Association, Pillar Creek Hatchery upgrades
  • $1 million, Ted Stevens Foundation, preservation of historic materials

Latest Stories

  • Make the Alaska Aces part of your team

    by Dave Leval on Dec 02, 21:01

    Here’s your chance to make Stephen Perfetto part of your team. The Alaska Aces center is one of three from the team on the ballot for the annual Meigray- ECHL Fantasy Team. Left-wingers Garet Hunt and Tim Wallace are also on the ballot. You can only vote once during the period that ends Monday, Dec. […]

  • News

    Bean’s Cafe opens overnight shelter, operated by its own staff

    by Eric Ruble on Dec 02, 20:52

    About 50 people were expected to spend Friday night inside Bean’s Cafe. Executive director Lisa Sauder said the decision was made less than one week ago, after the municipality asked for help in accommodating people who were turned away from places like Brother Francis Shelter due to high demand. “The need is great. The temperatures […]

  • Lawmakers, school board consider alternative approach to classroom discipline

    by Liz Raines on Dec 02, 20:35

    School suspensions may become a thing of the past. Lawmakers and school board members are looking at a different approach to student discipline statewide. National studies have found that, for many incarcerated adults, their pathway to jail started with frequent suspensions in school. The trend is now known as the School-to-Prison Pipeline. Educators statewide are trying […]

  • News

    Economist: Alaska is in a recession

    by Associated Press on Dec 02, 19:26

    JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) – A state labor department economist says Alaska is in a recession, facing job losses across most sectors of the economy amid chronically low oil prices. Caroline Schultz says the recession likely began at the end of 2015. Job numbers released by the department Friday show average monthly employment in the first […]

  • Guns and marijuana: Murkowski says feds are going too far

    by Shannon Ballard on Dec 02, 19:21

    Alaskans using marijuana may be forfeiting their right to bear arms. According to federal law, marijuana users can’t legally buy guns in the United States. At Granny’s Guns and Loan in Midtown, owner Barry Barr knows his firearms and the rules required to sell them. Each buyer must fill out federal Form 4473. “They have to […]

  • News

    APD asks community where officers should spend their time

    by Lauren Maxwell on Dec 02, 19:02

    Anchorage will soon have new police officers on the streets and for some people, they couldn’t come soon enough. Back-to-back academies, including a graduation on Thursday, are pushing the numbers up. APD spokeswoman Jennifer Castro said there are 40 more officers on the street then there were in January of 2015. She said by next […]

  • Lifestyle

    Avalanche experts: Check your safety gear before venturing into the backcountry

    by Heather Hintze on Dec 02, 18:40

    When it comes to being in the backcountry safety is a top priority. “I’d say, if I showed up and missed a piece of safety gear, it didn’t make it in the car I probably wouldn’t go,” skier Tad Denning said. “It’s hard to enjoy yourself up there when you know you’re not prepared.” Denning […]

  • Politics

    Trump speaks with Taiwan’s president, risking China tensions

    by Associated Press on Dec 02, 16:45

    NEW YORK (AP) – Donald Trump has spoken with the president of Taiwan, a self-governing island the U.S. broke diplomatic ties with in 1979. It is highly unusual, perhaps unprecedented, for a U.S. president or president-elect to speak directly with a Taiwanese leader. The U.S. cut formal diplomatic ties with Taiwan when it shifted diplomatic […]