Jenkins: Whistling our way past budget graveyard will not work

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For years, too many Alaskans have whistled their way past Alaska’s fiscal graveyard, scurrying along, averting their eyes when deficit ghosts drenched in red ink reared their heads.

Those days are gone.

Alaskans are getting the idea: We have too much government and not enough dough; and we cannot spend what we do not have. Underscoring that, state Office of Management and Budget Director Donna Arduin says since fiscal 2013, state spending has outpaced revenues by $16 billion, and lawmakers have drained state savings accounts to close those gaps.

Gov. Mike Dunleavy’s heart-stopping budget proposal that rips the Band-Aid off Alaska’s current $1.6 billion budget shortfall aims to stop the bleeding. It is the first shot in what likely will be a long, raucous budget fight. The budget gores everybody’s ox and grinds herds of sacred cows to hamburger.

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