February 7, 2018
I am sending this email quickly before I go back to the House Floor where HB 287 is being debated. I am so excited to cosponsor this bill with several of my colleagues. This is a very important education bill that will allow early funding for education. That means we will be able to fund schools separately from the operating budget, which really helps our students.

The bill will fund schools at the same level the Governor recommended in his FY 2019 budget. Getting that money to schools early in the session will allow school districts to build their budgets early in the year, rather than having to wait until the entire operating budget is finished. This means we won't be ending the school year by handing out pink slips to teachers.
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The money will need to come from somewhere, and next year's projections predict another huge fiscal gap. We are very fortunate to have some savings accounts we can draw from as we continue to work on the fiscal plan. We can pull from the Constitutional Budget Reserve, which is earning just under 2% interest, or we can pull from the Permanent Fund Earnings Reserve account, which earned almost 13% interest last year. I want to keep our money working for us, and pulling from the CBR is the best way to do that and fund our schools.
I just want to remind you that tomorrow is the Anchorage Transportation Fair. It's a great event to stop by if you have any questions about getting around Anchorage.

When:             Thursday, Feb. 8, 2018, 3 to 7 p.m.
Where:           Alaska Airlines Center Auxiliary, 3550 Providence Drive
Via Bus:         Routes 10, 20, or 55
Web:                http://anchoragetranspofair.blogspot.com/

They will have booths staffed with experts on the bus systems, car seat safety technicians on hand, and information about transportation upgrades for everyone, whether you walk, bike, take the bus, or drive.
Nominations are Open!

Each year Alaska's First Lady recognizes people who have shown a strong commitment to volunteerism in our state. First Lady Donna Walker invites Alaskans to recognize their fellow citizens who have performed extraordinary volunteer service by nominating them for the First Lady’s Volunteer of the Year Awards.

The awards recognize volunteers who engage in unpaid charitable activities, demonstrate personal commitment to long-term volunteer services, and make a significant impact for Alaskans.
An executive committee, comprised of Alaskan community members, will select award recipients to be recognized for their outstanding volunteer contributions.
Upcoming Community Councils
University Area Community Council (UACC)

UACC meets TONIGHT at 7pm at 4313 Wright Street.

Visit the UACC Website for more information.
Russian Jack Community Council (RJCC)
RJCC meets at 6:30pm on the 3rd Wednesday of each month. The meeting is held at Wonder Park Elementary located at 5101 E 4th Ave.

The next RJCC meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, February 14th, 2018.

More information can be found at the RJCC website .
Northeast Community Council (NECC)

NECC meets at 7 p.m. on the 3rd Thursday of each month at the Muldoon Community Assembly Youth Facility at 1005 North Ermine Street. 

The next NECC meeting is scheduled for this Thursday, February 15 at 7 p.m.

You can always find the agenda for the meetings at the NECC website.
To learn about other upcoming events and meetings, follow me on Facebook and Twitter . You can also check my website for past newsletters and updates on legislation.

Keep in touch!