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Use PFD to help the struggle

Posted: Friday, April 25, 2008

The state of Alaska is in a unique position as never before seen in its history.

Because of high petroleum value, the state as a whole is gaining great wealth; yet the Alaska citizens are struggling to pay their petroleum bills.

The Alaska Constitution gives each citizen an equal individual interest in the state's wealth. This means that whether you are wealthy or poor, each individual owns an equal amount. The annual Alaska Permanent Fund dividend distribution fully meets the principle of equal division.

This past Legislature had a revenue surplus of $5 billion that was put into a savings account for unknown future use. Five billion dollars works out to $7,690 per citizen. During the same session, the Legislature appropriated $20 million for citizen petroleum cost relief. This works out to $31 per citizen - $7,690 per citizen put in a savings account, $31 per citizen to help pay for individual petroleum costs. No small difference.

With a special legislative session in the making, I encourage each legislative member to set aside political lines and to appropriate a significant amount of money to each citizen of Alaska.

I believe that the vast majority of Alaskans would support this legislation and would approve of using the Alaska Permanent Fund principal in the distribution of the money.

If you agree with me, please take a minute to tell your legislative representatives your feelings. If you, the silent majority, choose not to call, odds are nothing will change.

Call Juneau Democrats, Rep. Beth Kerttula at 465-4766, Sen. Kim Elton at 465-4947 or Rep. Andrea Doll at 465-3744.

Ron Pagenkopf

Juneau



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