Juneau Superior Court Judge Daniel Schally ruled that Gov. Mike Dunleavy, Education Commissioner Michael Johnson and Administration Commissioner Kelly Tshibaka “violated their duty to faithfully execute the law” by not executing the appropriation.
Schally issued an injunction, mandating that the governor and the commissioners disburse the funds.
Attorney General Kevin Clarkson said he’ll appeal the ruling.
In a statement, Clarkson said the decision “upends the appropriations process as we know it and could lead to one legislature and governor setting the budget five, six or more years in advance.”
Legislators have said that’s unlikely, since they could always change appropriations passed in a previous year. They chose not to do that this year.
Dunleavy originally proposed cutting school funding by nearly one-fourth before backing away from the cut. He’s scheduled to propose the next state budget by Dec. 15.
Alaska has a lot going on right now.
Never miss the important parts with insightful (and entertaining) news from The Signal, the best weekly Alaska news email.
- While this particular virus isn’t doing widespread damage, its emergence opens the door for other viruses to pop up between oceans.
- The Alaska Marine Highway System recently deployed the Tazlina to restore winter service to some Southeast communities. But the ferry can’t serve Angoon right now — its ramp is broken.
- The Juneau Police Department reports that two people have died in a single-car crash near Cohen Drive Thursday morning. Additionally, two people who were in the car were medevaced out of Juneau.
- With this project, Alaska transportation officials are relying more heavily on public dialogue from Juneau residents.