Save the PFD

The problem our Government in Alaska, with its Obama-era Leftovers still in power, is that they are down there in their own little world, with the Lobbyists and the ever present threat of being PUNISHED severely, and even CENSORED!

Reprimanded severely by the Party Bosses and the Governor himself. Governor Bill Walker sat in the balcony, taking note on who didn’t support his expensive Leftist spending policies. They have Fake News sources like the newspaper, ADN, Television news channels KTUU, KTVA, and even use Publicly-funded broadcasting like APRN and NPR as a Community Organizing tool to deceive the masses and promote their liberal agenda.

They will enact a smear campaign on anyone who opposes them, on air, like how they did to Rep. Eastman. They USE Minorities like Alaska Natives to make us feel like we are victims and they are our “Protector”. STEALING the people’s PFD monies while laughing all the way to the bank. They EXPECT us to believe them when they say they have a budget crisis (manufactured) and have to hurry up and spend our PFD monies, in order to SAVE IT FOR US! They must think we are really really stupid and gullible to believe that. www.Facebook.com/savethepfd

Herman W. Morgan
Aniak, AK

Social Security supports National Cancer Survivors Day

In 2017, more than a million people will be diagnosed with cancer around the world. This alarming statistic affects people and families everywhere. Chances are, you know someone who has been affected by this terrible disease.

On June 4, we observe National Cancer Survivors Day in the United States. In support of this day, Social Security encourages getting checkups to provide early detection, raise awareness through education, and recognize the survivors who have gone through this battle or are still living with the disease.

Social Security stands strong in our support of the fight against cancer. We offer services to patients dealing with this disease through our disability insurance program and our Compassionate Allowances program. Compassionate Allowances are cases with medical conditions so severe they obviously meet Social Security’s disability standards, allowing us to process the cases quickly with minimal medical information. Many cancers are part of our Compassionate Allowances list.

There’s no special application or form you need to submit for Compassionate Allowances. Simply apply for disability benefits online, in-person or over the phone. Once we identify you as having a Compassionate Allowances condition, we will expedite your disability application.

Social Security establishes Compassionate Allowances conditions using information received at public outreach hearings, from our employees, who review millions of disability cases each year, from medical and scientific experts, and from data based on our research. For more information about Compassionate Allowances, including the list of eligible conditions, visit www.socialsecurity.gov/compassionateallowances.

Social Security is with you throughout life’s journey, through good times and bad. If you think you qualify for disability benefits based on a Compassionate Allowances condition, please visit www.socialsecurity.gov to apply for benefits.

Robin Schmidt
Social Security Administration
Alaska Public Affairs Specialist

Stubbornness Risks Alaskans Livelihoods

The recent Legislative session, and the current “not so special” session has produced thoughtful debate highlighting the differences in philosophy held by legislators grappling to pass a budget during a historic downturn in oil prices.

The House Majority and Minority, and the Senate Majority have each produced distinct plans to decrease the budget deficit and provide essential state services. I am grateful for the work of my colleagues in the Legislature and while we don’t always agree, I want to believe each is committed to finding a responsible path forward that does not shut down state government and avoids putting an unjustifiable tax burden on Alaska’s hard working families.

But now the House and Senate must stop the staring contest. We are in an overtime Special Session, state government is facing a shutdown, and the economy is in recession bleeding thousands of jobs. The House and Senate conference committees have not convened to meet on the critical items of importance: the operating budget, restructuring the Permanent Fund, and oil and gas tax credits and cashable credits.

As a lifelong Alaskan, I cannot remember a single time the House and Senate have agreed on a budget without resolving differences in a Conference Committee. There are always differences on the size and scope of government, but no disagreements can be left unresolved for long. A budget must be passed.

I am grateful to the many Alaskans who have expressed thoughtful solutions to move through the present impasse. I absolutely do not support the government shutdown, and do believe there is room for compromise to avoid such an action. The House income tax proposal was a non-starter, unnecessary, and died in the Senate in early May. The Senate will need to lighten up on the cuts and restore some funding to education. A statewide sales tax should be considered, along with certain exemptions to protect seniors and retirees.

I am encouraging the House Democrat and Senate Republican leadership teams to look at areas where they do agree (reducing cashable oil tax credits, and restructuring our permanent fund) and to schedule conference committee meetings on these items to get to consensus as soon as possible.

Pink slips have now been delivered to many of our school teachers, resulting in the potential loss of valuable employees. We already know that teacher turnover costs the state more than $20 million a year in lost recruitment, training and productivity. And there are many more job classes about to get pink slips the first week of June, with layoffs effective July 1. This puts essential state services in jeopardy – state road and airport maintenance, public safety, public health, and child welfare to name a few. These services all require action on the budget, the Legislature’s main constitutional duty.

No revenue measure is so important that it is worth shutting down our future over. We have other options, so let’s get to work. I remain firmly opposed to allowing a government shutdown, and to wasting any more time or public money to resolve this budget impasse. If you agree, please let your legislator know.

Rep. Chuck Kopp
State House Representative for District 24
Anchorage, AK

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