Spending and crime discussed by house republicans

    Juneau, Alaska (KINY) The house minority had choice words for a lack of action against crime in this years legislature.

    They also complained about too much government spending.

    Rep. Lora Reinbold said there still is a recession and this budget doesn't  help matters, "I hope the Senate can make some meaningful cuts and reduce the massive footprint of big government in Alaska.  Its a big, big, big budget."

    Rep. Mark Neuman voted against the budget.  He said there is no identification of funds to pay for it yet, "It is not funded.  The questions I have is the $700 million left out of the income reserve, it could mean an income tax there thinking about, it was interesting."

    Rep. Reinbold said they must focus on crime and a repeal of senate bill 91, "I really hope Rep. Matt Claman gets on the ball and help us get some judiciary hearings to address the rampant crime out there."

    Reinbold said she supports a full repeal of Senate bill 91.  She said her ideas won't get heard in the judicial committee.

    Rep. Colleen Sullivan-Leonard said she supported a full PFD this year, "I do continue to support that.  That is in statute.  We are supposed to process that through a formula.  We need to follow statute on that."

    Sullivan-Leonard also urged Alaskans to listen to the debate over oil taxes that is brewing in the legislature.

    The Senate Finance Committee agreed to include a $1,600 PFD in their budget proposal being reviewed by the finance committee.

    Rep. Neuman said the state government is not taking advantage of federal dollars available to help the economy, "People continue to die on our streets because of politics.  I'm tired of it.  We could have billions of dollars going into our economy from the federal government.  We are not using all the tools in our tool box."

    Neuman said he supports construction of the Juneau Access Road.  He said he had a conversation with a former Department of Transportation Commissioner and learned there is federal dollars waiting to be spent,  "We could have $750 million with a road in southeast.  The federal plan would spend more money in Alaska.  We could have over $600 million for the road.  It would save the state over $20 million in ferry service costs."

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