District 26 
February 20, 2017

We have been in session just over 30 days since our January 17th swearing in ceremony. I have appreciated the many visitors from the District and around Alaska, as well as the opportunity to build a better future for our state.  

My Focus This Session

I share your interest in a sustainable and balanced state budget. Reducing the budget and supporting spending limits are among my top priorities. Structural reforms to the state's budgeting process and government's most costly programs are needed if the legislature is going to successfully address the state's fiscal situation.

In my view, we need to first evaluate the extent to which spending reductions, and earnings from the permanent fund, can be used to balance the state budget before we look to implementing broad-based taxes. I will take a thoughtful and balanced approach, weigh all options and assess their effects.

There are no easy answers, but many difficult decisions. I have been working diligently with my colleagues to address Alaska's deficit, unparalleled in state history, and advance policy and legislation that focus on putting more oil in the pipeline, reducing spending and improving Alaska's investment climate.

The Budget Gap
Alaska is in its fifth consecutive year operating under a significant budget deficit. As illustrated in the graph below, our current deficit spending matches surplus spending of the past:

Source: Legislative Fiscal Analyst's Overview of the Governor's FY2018 Request

A few of the budget related proposals before the legislature include the following:
With revenue covering under 30 percent of annual expenditures and the state facing a $3 billion fiscal gap, we are going to have to change the way we do business and I look forward to working toward a solution.

You're Invited! 
Anchorage Caucus Meeting

This is your opportunity to let me know what's on your mind and provide input on issues 
important to you! 

Saturday, February 25, 2017

10:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m. 

Anchorage Legislative Information Office
1500 West Benson Boulevard

See What's Happening in the Capitol  

Get involved! All committee meetings are noticed online at Here you can view meeting agendas, search bills, and see if a meeting is open for public comment. You will also find all pertinent meeting documents and an up-to-date schedule of events. I serve on the House Resources, Labor & Commerce, and State Affairs Standing Committees and Finance Subcommittees

Delighted to Have Constituents 
Stop by my Office this Session:  

Alaska Close Up student Ava Martin and
chaperon Annie Dougherty visiting me in 
the Capitol to discuss her proposal to 
address the issue of homelessness in Anchorage.
    Met with Jeannine Jabaay. Jabaay is 
    the  president of Treeline Construction 
    and  serves as a public member on the     
    Board  of Barbers and Hairdressers. 

Representative Chris Birch | Alaska State Capitol Rm. 112  Juneau, AK 99801
Phone: 907-465-4931|