Story last updated at 12/10/2008 - 11:29 am
Anchorage - Reacting to the steadily dropping price of oil, which closed Dec. 4 at $39.17 per barrel, Governor Sarah Palin said her upcoming budget proposal for Fiscal Year 2010 will stress fiscal conservatism.
"For the first time in many years, the state is presenting a general fund budget that spends less than the current one, especially when adjusted for inflation," Palin said. "At the same time, by saving $5 billion in the last legislative session, we will be able to continue essential services without any imminent threat to government services should the price fall even further."
Palin noted that the progressive oil tax rate included in Alaska's Clear and Equitable Share (ACES) legislation last year generated surplus revenue because of high oil prices this summer.
"Because of the wise choices we've made up to this point, there is no need for panic," the governor said. "The exploration investment tax credits included in ACES mean that there's continuing incentive to develop our oil resource and keep revenue flowing to the state treasury over the long term.
"A few short years ago, $40 per barrel oil prices would have been great news for the state of Alaska. We need to keep this in perspective."
Governor Palin will release her proposed FY 2010 budget on Dec. 15 in Juneau. Revenue Commissioner Pat Galvin will release the fall revenue forecast next Tuesday, also in Juneau.