Austerman on Stimulus Dollars and Ross Vote


Jay Barrett/KMXT

House District 36 Representative Alan Austerman of Kodiak was on KMXT’s Talk of the Rock last week, and discussed the many issues that came out of this year’s legislative session.

Federal stimulus money eased the budgetary woes that come with lower crude oil prices, but Governor Sarah Palin’s rejection of 28-million dollars for energy assistance and weatherization, was a move Austerman didn’t agree with.

(Austerman 1 :42 "We think she should have … throughout the state.")

The legislature could call itself back into session to override Palin’s veto, but Austerman told KMXT’s Jay Barrett they could also wait until the next legislative session:

(Austerman 2 34 sec "We were told by the … other states that will use it.")

With Palin’s desire for a higher profile among Lower 48 conservatives, some have interpreted her veto of the stimulus funds as political posturing.

(Austerman 3 21 sec "There’s always that … addressed some of the issues.")

Austerman said he got some heat from conservatives in Kodiak for his vote against the confirmation of Wayne Anthony Ross as Palin’s attorney general – the first rejection of a cabinet member in Alaska history. Austerman reached his decision after Ross made the comment that the legislature should, quote, "not argue with legal or illegal," unquote, in the appointment of a senator for Juneau. It was a statement Ross later denied making.

(Austerman 4 24 sec "I asked him that question … he shouldn’t be lying.")

You can read more of Austerman’s positions on his blog, Alan Austerman dot com.

As for his summer plans, Austerman said he was going to visit some of the mainland communities in District 36, which stretches from the Katmai coast to Lake Iliamna.


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