Alaska Gov. Mike Dunleavy speaks at a news conference in Juneau, Alaska, Wednesday, Jan. 16, 2019. (AP Photo/Becky Bohrer)

Alaska Gov. Mike Dunleavy speaks at a news conference in Juneau, Alaska, Wednesday, Jan. 16, 2019. (AP Photo/Becky Bohrer)

Borough to lose $1.4 million under proposed Dunleavy education cuts

School district says it can’t afford cut to education

Gov. Mike Dunleavy introduced legislation that would repeal a 2018-2019 appropriation of $20 million to K-12 public education in Alaska. In a letter to peninsula Sens. Gary Stevens and Peter Micciche, Kenai Peninsula Borough School District Assistant Superintendent Dave Jones asked for support in opposing the repeal of the one-time funding.

Of the $20 million, $1.4 million was appropriated and allocated to the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District, according to documents from the state Department of Education and Early Development.

The school district budgeted the $1.4 million into their General Fund Revenue, which was used to reinstate 11.5 teaching positions.

“We have been employing and paying those folks since the start of the school year in August,” the letter reads.

In his letter, Jones said the district cannot afford to be forced to spend an addition $1.4 million in fund balance.

Last year, the Legislature passed a $20 million appropriation to be distributed among Alaska’s school districts during the current fiscal year. Dunleavy’s proposal essentially nixes the $20 million appropriation approved by legislators when the budget passed.

The $20 million was the first budget increase in years. It was divided among Alaska’s 53 school districts and Mt. Edgecumbe school in Sitka.

According to a document from the Office of Budget and Management, the proposed education cut is intended to provide money to underfunded programs at other agencies.

“The additional funding created a situation in which education was funded beyond the statutorily required amount while other programs were underfunded. This reduction is required to meet other obligations of the state,” the document states.

On Monday, the governor proposed two supplemental budget bills. Senate Bill 39, the bill that includes a $20 million cut to education, would provide an increase in funds to the Department of Corrections, the Alaska State Troopers and the Office of Information Technology.

Both supplemental budget bills are in the Senate Finance Committee.

The AP contributed to this report.

More in News

A member of the Gannet Glacier Type 2 Initial Attack Crew uses a drip torch during a burnout operation at the Swan Lake Fire on June 18, 2019. (Photo courtesy Alaska Division of Forestry)
Burn ban lifted — except on the Kenai

Ban will stay in effect on the peninsula due to recreational traffic associated with fishing season.

The Alaska Grown logo.
Homer Farmers Market: Market opens — with changes

The first Homer Farmers Market is coming up this weekend. This is… Continue reading

Two new COVID-19 cases for Kenai Peninsula

The Kenai Peninsula Borough has two new positive cases of COVID-19, according… Continue reading

Registered Nurse Cathy Davis (left) and Chief Nursing Officer Dawn Johnson (right) work at a table to get COVID-19 tests ready for the public Friday, May 29, 2020 at the Boat House Pavilion on the Homer Spit in Homer, Alaska. South Peninsula Hospital is now offering free COVID-19 testing for asymptomatic people with no appointments necessary at the Boat House Pavilion through June 6. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News)
1 new COVID-19 case in Homer as hospital offers free testing on the Spit

Additional COVID-19 cases announced in Soldotna and in a nonresident visitor to the peninsula

COVID-19. (Image courtesy the CDC)
7 new cases of COVID-19 on Kenai Peninsula

5 of the new cases are on the southern peninsula, and Nikiski has its first case

COVID-19. (Image courtesy the CDC)
1 new COVID-19 case announced in Bethel area

One new case of COVID-19 was announced Wednesday, bringing the state’s total… Continue reading

COVID-19 impacting local fitness centers

In the small town of Homer, Alaska residents are finding ways to… Continue reading

Graduate Virginia Orth walks back to her car with her parents, April and David Orth, after receiving her diploma during the Connections Homeschool Class of 2020 graduation at Soldotna Elementary School in Soldotna, Alaska on May 21, 2020. (Photo by Brian Mazurek/Peninsula Clarion)
Making one last connection

Connections home-school students celebrate graduation together, at a distance

Kelly Cooper kicks off campaign in “Rally on the Bay”

Correction: This story has been corrected to note that Rep. Sarah Vance,… Continue reading

Most Read