The local legislative delegation provided an update to a joint session of the Kenai and Soldotna chambers this week. Following the address, we asked Senator Cathy Giessel who represents the Northern Peninsula, Nikiski, Sterling, Seward, Hope and Girdwood about what issues need to be taken up when lawmakers return in to Juneau in January.
Sen. Giessel(R-S.Anchorage): “Well we passed that significant House Bill 4, which is the natural gas pipeline project that will continue to move forward in competition with the AGIA project, so that competition, that friction will be a good thing, and will move those things forward. But we need to look at what the tax structure will be on gas, we really haven’t refined that. So that will be one thing. We need to continue to look at the budget, operating budget continues to grow, because of all the formula programs. The health program, the State’s Health Department, that department is a $2 billion budget, we need to look at cutting those kind of things, and how do we make them more manageable.”