Frontiers Preview: Former Senate President Clem Tillion ready to fight
When Clem Tillion was president of Alaska's state Legislature, he liked to say he was Gov. Jay Hammond’s “hammer.”
Together, they worked to pass the landmark legislation which created the Alaska Permanent Fund.
On this Sunday’s Frontiers, you can see how Tillion is back at it, ready to pound away at a problem lawmakers have yet to fix – how to pay for state government in an era of low oil prices.
Next year, the state will once again face a multi-billion dollar budget deficit. But this time, it won’t have enough savings to close the gap. One option is to spend earnings from the Permanent Fund – another, to re-impose a state income tax or raise other taxes. Business leaders warn new taxes would be disastrous for the state’s economy.
At the end of October, Gov. Bill Walker hopes to call a special session, the fourth one this year, to get lawmakers to avert the coming fiscal crisis.
If Tillion has his way, the Permanent Fund won’t be a part of the solution.
At 92, he still enjoys a good fight – and warns that a ballot measure to protect the fund could be up for a vote in November 2018.
Here’s a preview of this week’s Frontiers show, “Alaska Politics: Always a Wild Ride.” Frontiers airs on KTVA Channel 11 on Sunday, Sept. 10 at 4:30 and 10:30 p.m. You can also watch Frontiers on GCI Cable Channel 907 at 8:30 a.m. Sunday.