Archive for the ‘Issues’ Category

Budget Monkey Business in Alaska

There are some strange happenings going on in Juneau usually but this one takes the cake.  Governor Walker introduced a personal income tax bill, HB250, at the beginning of the 2016 session to help fill the huge budget hole which our government has dug for itself (and us).  When fully implemented in...
June 2nd, 2016 | Fiscal Policy, Recent News | Read More

Alaska Spends More on K12 and Gets Less Return on Investment

By now, we have all heard the outcries from the K12 public education establishment, including district superintendents, the teachers unions, and the fundraising arm of the NEA, Great Alaska Schools.  Rather than pay attention to emotional  screaming by wealthy people with bullhorns, let’s take...
May 20th, 2016 | Recent News | Read More

What Should School Boards Focus on?

The immediate reaction to the question regarding what should school boards focus on is probably students and their achievement.  But how much time do Alaska school boards spend on assessing and improving student achievement?  If one reviews the agenda of the Anchorage School Board, one will note that...
May 5th, 2016 | Recent News | Read More

Legislators: Here are Some Places to Reduce the State’s Budget

Time is getting short in Juneau and surely tempers are getting just as short as the legislative session winds down (or up).  We thought we would provide some food for thought (suggestions) to our legislators on where they could save the State some money and save us from taxes and PFD cuts. Here is...
April 19th, 2016 | Recent News | Read More

Public Monies Fund These Private Educational Institutions

Here is a listing of those “educational” institutions that high school graduates attend using their Alaska Performance Scholarship funds.  Now these educational/training organizations may be providing some great instruction to post-high school students.  But these are state funds and are...
April 14th, 2016 | Recent News | Read More

Let’s Use Your PFD to Fund Alaska Students’ College Education

There is a bill in the legislature, SB208, that would discontinue the Alaska Performance Scholarship program effective as of next year’s high school graduating class.  The program would still be available for those already benefiting from the program and this year’s high school graduates. ...
April 12th, 2016 | Recent News | Read More

What will the US Dept of Education do with Alaska’s AMP Test Failure?

Here is a post from Politico which may shed some light on Alaska’s quandary on its troubled Alaska Measurement of Progress (AMP) test: “IS ALASKA MAKING ‘EVERY EFFORT’ TO ADMINISTER TESTS? After major technical glitches [], resulted in Alaska canceling...
April 12th, 2016 | Recent News | Read More

Anchorage School District Fails to Educate Mentally Challenged Students

There was a very interesting debate on SB103, “Residential Psychiatric Education Funding”,  which provides for the funding of mentally challenged children in residential treatment facilities.  It seems as if in the past that the Anchorage School District has not provided adequate educational...
April 8th, 2016 | Recent News | Read More

Nonprofit releases report on city employee salaries, KTUU

You decide. Publishing of Muni of Anchorage payroll, is it inflammatory or informational? Watch this KTUU-TV interview and let us know what you think.               ( KTUU – TV ) Copy and past this in your web browser:
April 7th, 2016 | Recent News | Read More

Just Released-Fairbanks North Star Borough Payroll

We have just received a copy of the Fairbanks North Star Borough payroll for 2015.  As you can see, there are no employee names which is unfortunate and the listing is by position description. Of special interest are the column headings “Health” and “PERS”.  The health column...
April 5th, 2016 | Recent News | Read More

Proposition 8 Puts Ceiling on Property Taxes

We have all heard about the Proposition 8, Repair the Tax Cap, on the Anchorage Municipal ballot on April 5th.  Where is the truth in this rather confusing debate? Will taxes go up, down or even sideways? Well, we are here to show what would have happened if the newest Assembly version of the Tax Cap...
April 4th, 2016 | Recent News | Read More

Anchorage Payroll Just Released; 453 Employees Cost More than the Mayor

One of our guiding principles at the Alaska Policy Forum is that government should be limited and as transparent as possible.  Over the past 4 years we have provided as much information that we could obtain from local/state governments and school districts.  We believe it is important for taxpayers...
March 31st, 2016 | Accountability, Fiscal Policy, Recent News | Read More

Detroit Public School Principals Get Recognition (fm FBI) on Fiscal Policy

HERE IS THE LATEST NEWS FROM THE US ATTORNEY GENERAL’S OFFICE IN DETROIT FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Tuesday, March 29, 2016 Twelve Detroit Public Schools Principals, Assistant Superintendent and Vendor Charged with Bribery Criminal charges were filed today against 12 current or former Detroit Public...
March 30th, 2016 | Recent News | Read More

Alaska Funds PERS Retirement for Alaska Municipal League Employees

This is a reprint of an article which we posted on May 17, 2010.  Today, it is even more relevant because the CEO of the Alaska Municipal League, Kathy Wasserman, is arguing against recently filed legislation shifting more of the PERS costs to local governments. These are the same government interests...
March 29th, 2016 | Accountability | Read More

Alaska Pork Book Exposes Crony Capitalism & Waste

We have just compiled the first ever Alaska Pork Book which documents the frivolous State of Alaska spending on “capital projects” from 2005-15.  It seems as if the State has been spending its winnings from the “oil lottery” on wasteful, unnecessary projects.  Unfortunately,...
March 24th, 2016 | Recent News | Read More

Governor Walker’s DHSS Budget Saves Only $1 Million, not $47 Million as Stated

Although there appear to be many savings in the FY17 budget, much of these savings are through shifting the payment for Medicaid services from the state government to the federal government. These transfers are implemented through “Medicaid reform” initiatives, such as 100% federal payment for travel...
March 4th, 2016 | Fiscal Policy, Recent News | Read More