Native Leadership calls on Alaska Legislators to pass a solution to the fiscal crisis this session


CONTACT: Jeff Silverman
(907) 263-1304

(Anchorage, Alaska) – The Alaska Federation of Natives (AFN), Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (ANCSA) Regional Association, and Alaska Native Village Corporation Association (ANVCA) are collectively urging Alaska’s legislators to enact a solution addressing the state’s fiscal crisis before the 30th Legislative Session adjourns.

“We recognize the difficulty and complexity of the situation, but this is the time, this is the session, for the legislature to make bold decisions to secure a hopeful future for all Alaskans through a fair and comprehensive solution,” said Julie Kitka, AFN President.

A number of solutions have been proposed. Each one affects Alaska’s economy and community members differently, and all have merits that can help resolve the enormous budget deficit. Today, we ask our state legislature to take swift and decisive action in order to restore stability for all Alaskans.

“We are encouraged to see plan elements on the table that can help address the current deficit,” said ANCSA Regional Association Executive Director Kim Reitmeier. “Fiscal uncertainty impacts every business sector across the state. Now is the time for our legislative body to work together to propose a solution and forge a path forward for all Alaskans. The hard work of rebuilding our state’s economy is just beginning.”

“Alaska has been dependent on oil revenues for far too long, a comprehensive solution is needed if our economy is ever to become sustainable without it.” Says Hallie Bissett, Executive Director of ANVCA. “A dividend only solution hurts residents and businesses in rural Alaska disproportionately. Those of us who live and work here and plan to stay are willing to be a part of the solution, the time to act is in 2017.”

About AFN:

The Alaska Federation of Natives (AFN) was formed in October 1966, when more than 400 Alaska Natives representing 17 Native organizations gathered for a three-day conference to address Alaska Native aboriginal land rights. It is now the largest statewide Native organization in Alaska. Its membership includes 152 federally recognized tribes, 152 village corporations, 12 regional corporations and 12 regional non-profit and tribal consortiums that contract and compact to run federal and state programs. AFN is governed by a 38-member Board, which is elected by its membership at the annual convention held each October. The mission of AFN is to enhance and promote the cultural, economic and political voice of the entire Alaska Native community.

About the ANCSA Regional Association:

The ANCSA Regional Association represents the Chief Executive Officers of the twelve land-based regional Alaska Native Corporations (ANCs). Our corporations are owned by over 121,000 Alaska Native people and were formed under the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act of 1971, 43 U.S.C. § 1601, et. seq. (ANCSA). Our mission is to promote and foster the continued growth and economic strength of the Alaska Native Regional Corporations on behalf of our shareholders. When measured against the top 49 Alaska-owned companies, ANCs account for 75 percent of revenue earned, 69 percent of Alaskan jobs and 86 percent of the global employment. Making up 20 of the top 49 Alaska-owned companies, ANCs have become an economic engine for Alaska.

About the ANVCA:

The Alaska Native Village Corporation Association (ANVCA) was formed in 2008 when the Village Corporation leadership recognized a need for a unified voice and believed that Village Corporations would benefit from sharing best practices. Its membership includes 176 ANCSA Village Corporations formed under ANCSA that are still currently operating in the State of Alaska. Its board is made up of nine members whose membership is limited to acting CEO, COO, or Chairman of a Village Corporation. ANVCA is the only organization dedicated to furthering the collective interests of Alaska Native Village Corporations through sharing best practices, advocating for their political interests, and providing opportunities to connect with other Village Corporations and community business partners. Our members reverse the traditional economic model in Alaska by investing both in-State and outside of Alaska in a truly global business model. These revenues and profits are then redistributed to Alaskans by way of dividends and scholarships for our shareholders and their families.