|An update from Legislative Finance|
December 14, 2020
LFD December NewsletterThe Governor's FY22 budget was released on Friday, December 11. The Legislative Finance Division will analyze the budget and release the Legislative Fiscal Analyst's Overview of the Governor's Budget on the first day of the legislative session, January 19. In addition, we will publish Subcommittee Books detailing the Governor's budget for State agencies.
Website RedesignWe redesigned our website, http://www.legfin.akleg.gov, to improve navigation and readability. The same information is present as before, but we hope the new design will make it easier for new legislators and staff to find everything.
Updated Budget History Graphs and DataOver the past few years, LFD worked to verify and update our budget history data, which involved going line-by-line through every budget since statehood to ensure that we count items consistently. The result is our updated Budget History Graphs and the associated data file. This data set now stretches back to statehood and allows us to see spending of all fund sources rather than just general funds. The new graphs offer a comprehensive look at Alaska's historical spending and revenue and how that compares to today.
These new graphs were aided by the Department of Revenue's historical revenue project that was published in the Fall 2018 Revenue Sources Book. We also owe a special thanks to longtime LFD analyst Amanda Ryder for doing the heavy lifting on this project.
New Informational Papers with Legislative Research DivisionThe Legislative Finance Division teamed up with Legislative Research to publish several new informational papers to help legislators, staff, and the public better understand Alaska's budget and State government. They have been fantastic partners and we hope to continue this collaboration over time to build up a library of readable, up-to-date explanatory information.
We published an updated Citizen's Guide to K-12 Funding, which provides a readable and informative walkthrough of Alaska's school funding formulas. This document may help demystify a formula that is often our largest budget item.
We also published an updated Medicaid Frequently Asked Questions page, which provides data and resources to understand the program. Legislative Research published a paper on their website titled Medicaid in Alaska - a Primer, which was a joint effort between our two divisions. This provides more general information to help explain how the program operates.
Another collaborative effort is Local Government in Alaska, which provides information about the organization and structure of local government in Alaska. It touches on local government revenue sources and explains how services are provided at the State and local level in Alaska.
We have two different papers to explain the Community Assistance Program: an in-depth paper that includes historical information and a full explanation of the program's mechanics, and a summary version that contains primarily budget information.
Finally, stay tuned for a few more papers that are currently in the final stages of review. To get a notification as soon as these are published, make sure to subscribe to our email notifications.
Legislative Fiscal Analyst
430 Main Street
Juneau, Alaska 99801