End of Session Update

I know many of you have already read the headlines and have a sense of what took place over the past four months in our Capitol. Overall, I am satisfied with how things turned out, given the way the House organized and the deep divisions that were revealed during the session. The budget that passed was far better than I feared just a few days before the end, and we are well positioned to pass significant legislation in the second session of this Legislature in 2024.

Some highlights from the $6.4B budget:

  • A balanced budget with a small surplus passed after a one day Special Session
  • The State will NOT dip into our diminishing savings for the first time in a decade (The Constitutional Budget Reserve (CRB) currently has $2.4B)
  •  $174 million increase in education funding which is the largest increase in state history and represents the equivalent of an increase of $680 per student through the formula
  • $7.5 million was added to fund higher wages for childcare workers, with the goal of stabilizing and augmenting daycare availability across the state.
  • $5 million increase in Pre-K/Head Start funding
  • $7.5 million was added for increased reimbursement to home and community-based waiver services to keep elderly and Alaskans with special needs out of more costly institutions
  • $17.1 million in the Renewable Energy Fund
  • $1.5 million to continue building out the Alaska Long Trail
  • The PFD check this year will be a reasonable and responsible $1300, and if the price of oil increases, there may be an additional energy assistance check disbursed

Vote on the Operating Budget

I voted to concur with the Senate budget because, in balance, it was the responsible vote to put our state on a positive path forward. With 60 legislators from very different parts of Alaska, agreement takes a lot of effort. It was an honor to work with representatives who care deeply about our state’s future, even if we do not all pursue the same pathway to success.

The Work Ahead

While I am grateful for the investments in education, our state must do better. We need a steady stream of support, along with high expectations, to get Alaska producing the very best workforce our businesses depend on for success. And when we achieve that, our young Alaskans will proudly stay here to work and raise their families.

More in Pre-K: In order to build a culture of education, we must invest in our youngest children and their families to better support more readiness for K-12. Even with the new funding in Pre-K this year (including Headstart) our state still invests less than every other state per capita. And it shows. 81% of Alaskan kindergartners are 1 or 2 years behind when they start school. There are programs that have worked in other states that we can adopt, and with more political support we will get there!

Increase the BSA: Investing in our K-12 system must have the predictability of funding inside the BSA so that schools and school boards are able to attract and hire the very best. Only then, can we expect our graduates to have the job-readiness skills Alaska needs.

Restore University Investment: Our University system is still clawing back from years of severe cuts and is not only having trouble attracting and keeping students/faculty, I also learned of many deferred maintenance projects that must be taken care of in order to avoid very costly and dangerous problems.

A Sustainable Fiscal Plan: We can’t balance the budget through PFD cuts without causing significant pain and hardship for the most vulnerable Alaskans. Our savings are nearly depleted, and we don’t have the reserves in case of emergencies. We need new revenue measures, now. I am hopeful that new blood in the Legislature is ready to tackle this difficult issue and turn a corner so our economy can grow and Alaska can begin to prosper again.

New Energy in the Legislature: The good news is that there are lots of new legislators, many of whom were elected because they ran on the importance of a strong education system. These legislators are growing strong relationships across the aisle and learning the ropes. Already, we are seeing changes and I expect more on the horizon.

Upcoming Bills

SB88 – This bill will attract and keep more public employees, with new competitive options for benefits such as a retirement plan (primary sponsor Sen. Giessel)

SB52 – This bill will move additional education funding, with inflation proofing, into the Base Student Allocation (signaling a deeper commitment to long term consistent and predictable investments in K-12 education) (primary sponsor Sen. Tobin)

HB89 – Increasing support for childcare (primary sponsor Rep. Coulombe)

There are many other important bills working their way through committee related to these topics: creating a long-term fiscal plan for the state, public safety, campaign finance, campaign integrity, eliminating discrimination, incentivizing housing and improving blighted property, adding financial literacy in K-12 education, removing middle managers and lowering healthcare costs, mental healthcare in schools, and more!

Feel free to contact my office if you have any specific questions about bills you thought were in the hopper and are not listed below. Some bills will be held over until next January when the second session of the 33rd legislature reconvenes. 

This summer, my focus will be strengthening communications with constituents to ensure I bring your voice to the Capitol with new policies that make sense and are helpful to you. Have any ideas? If there is a problem that the Legislature can help to rectify, please write or call and schedule a meeting, or invite me to your informative event.

Staff (Courtney and Tasha) meetup at the state Art Bank with Jade. It was great fun seeing hundreds of Alaskan pieces and choosing a couple to display in our District 14 office.

Serving you,

Flag Day

The holiday commemorates the date in 1777 when the United States approved the design for its first national flag. June 14 is the day that we celebrate the adoption of the Stars and Stripes as the official flag of the United States. My office will be sharing Alaska flag pins at events and out of our office and I hope you will show your pride and wear one!

You are invited...Your voice matters

Marvelous Midtowners! Midweek, Mid-Day - Let’s Meet Up!

  • Want to know about bills in the hopper that may affect you? 
  • Have ideas of your own or a problem that could be solved with better policy or communication? 
  • Do you have a question about state services and need help navigating through the system? 

Let’s have some coffee/tea or maybe some lemonade and work together. If it is your lunch hour, feel free to bring your sack lunch, we will provide a refreshment.

When: Tuesday, June 6th at noon.

Where: Anchorage Legislative Information Office - 1500 W. Benson, Suite 325 (located on the corner of Benson and Minnesota). On the bus line and parking is free.

Please continue to reach out to my office any day. My staff and I are happy to answer questions, and assist in navigation of state services. My Anchorage office number is 907-269-0190.

Community Council Meetings

Meet neighbors and be a part of strengthening your local neighborhood!



Rogers Park


June 1

7 p.m.

Fire Station Four

June 7

7:00 - 8:30 p.m.

The Nave

June 12

6:00 - 8:00 p.m.

BP Energy Center

June 14

12:00 - 1:30 p.m.

3000 "C" Street Building Conference Room

Our Marvelous Midtown District

Let Us Hear From and Serve You

Representative Alyse Galvin

Anchorage LIO

1500 W Benson Blvd.

Room 325

Anchorage AK, 99503

Office: 907-269-0190


Senator Elvi Gray-Jackson

Anchorage LIO

1500 W Benson Blvd.

Room 328

Anchorage AK, 99503

Office: 907-269-0174



Mary Peltola

Anchorage Office:

121 W Fireweed Ln, Ste. 260

Anchorage, AK 99503


Phone: 907-921-6575



Lisa Murkowski

Fairbanks Office:

250 Cushman Ave, Suite 2D

Fairbanks, AK 99701


Phone: (907) 456-0233

Fax: (877) 857-0322



Dan Sullivan

Fairbanks Office:

101 12th Ave., Ste. 328

Fairbanks, AK 99701


Phone: (907) 456-0261

Fax: (907) 451-7290