Continuing his commitment to rein in state spending and keep Alaska's fiscal future strong, Governor Sean Parnell today signed House Bill 385, his legislation to address Alaska's biggest budget cost driver, its unfunded pension liability. Specifically, the governor's plan provides a $3 billion deposit into Alaska's retirement trust funds, allowing the state to make lower annual payments to the pension plans and better control spending in the future. HB 385 passed the Legislature unanimously.
"Today we are better securing Alaska's fiscal future by paying down our debt," Governor Parnell said. "Not only are we strengthening Alaska's already stellar fiscal position, but we are ensuring future generations of Alaskans are not saddled with this debt. I thank legislators for their support and for working with my administration, but I want to especially thank Representative Cathy Munoz for spearheading HB 385 this past session."
HB 385 reduces the state's annual payments to the pension plans and implements a strategy to address the unfunded liability in a timely manner. The legislation works in conjunction with the authorized FY 2015 budget to transfer $1 billion into the Public Employees' Retirement System and $2 billion into the Teachers' Retirement System from the Constitutional Budget Reserve Fund. Governor Parnell was joined by members of his cabinet, Mayor Sanford, members of the Juneau legislative delegation, and Kathy Wasserman with the Alaska Municipal League.