Attorney General official opinion: Legislature must fund education

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Education funding is heating up at the Alaska Capitol.

Alaska’s Attorney General Kevin Clarkson drafted an official opinion that says although the Legislature may have thought it “forward funded” education last year, they had no money in hand to appropriate.

The opinion, which absent a court challenge that overturns it, becomes law of the land. The constitutional problems with the forward funding method used by the Legislature include this conundrum: If allowed to forward appropriate, there’s no stopping the Legislature from forward funding the entire State budget for one, two, three, or more years. It can simply bypass the veto power of the Executive Branch for a governor’s entire term in office.

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