House and Senate adjourn; Governor calls special session

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ANCHORAGE (KTUU) - Governor Bill Walker signed a proclamation calling state lawmakers back for a 30-day special legislative session after the House and Senate adjourned Wednesday evening without deciding on a state operating budget.

[REALTIME: The Cost of Overtime Lawmaking in Alaska Clock (2017)]

The proclamation comes at the end of the constitutionally allowed 121-day lawmaking session in Juneau. Lawmakers have until June 1 to pass a state spending plan before state workers will receive layoff notices. If a budget is not passed by July 1, the government will shut down.

Also on the Governor’s list for the special session are a number of proposals aimed at reducing the state budget deficit, including a new broad-based tax, changes to the state’s oil and gas tax credit system, a motor fuel tax and transportation maintenance fund, and a plan to use the Permanent Fund’s earnings reserve account.

“I thank members of the House and Senate for taking positive steps toward solving Alaska’s fiscal challenges,” Gov. Walker wrote in a press release. “However, the work is not done. Our state cannot afford to continue drawing down savings to pay for schools, roads, and public safety. Alaskans deserve a complete fiscal plan that puts an end to the economic uncertainty we have been facing.”

The special session is scheduled to begin 11 a.m. Thursday.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates and be sure to tune into the Channel 2 News Late Edition for the latest details.

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