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ACEC Alaska


Bill Tracking for Alaska Legislation

ACEC Alaska Bill Tracking Spreadsheet - May 8, 2024


Links Related to the Built Environment

Link to April 11 Senate Transportation Committee hearing relating to DOT STIP hearing:


Link to April 11 Senate Transportation Committee hearing relating to DOT STIP update PowerPoint: 


Link to DOT STIP website:


Link to Senate Capital Budget website:


April 16, 2024 - Alaska Legislative Update

May 15 is the last day for the 2nd Session of the 33rd Legislature, unless they vote to extend, meaning we are in the final 30-day stretch. Last week was eventful in that the Senate exchanged the proposed capital budget to the House and the House exchanged the proposed operating budget to the Senate.  This exchange represents a considerable improvement over the last session and provides a measure of assurance that both sides are proceeding in a more harmonious manner, suggesting an improved outlook for final adjournment.  Once the Senate reports out the operating budget, a conference committee will be formed to reconcile differences between the two versions.  Once this process is complete, an adjournment will follow. 

The capital budget generally does not require reconciliation as the Senate version provides an allocation for House members to identify district priorities above and beyond the projects currently listed in the bill.  The Senate has identified approximately $550 million in general fund spending for capital budgeting, an increase over the governor's original proposal.  Combining House and Senate spending proposals (operating and capital) would result in a deficit of approximately $275 million given the House recommends a + $2,200 dividend.  I would expect that the conference committee will reduce that dividend recommendation such that the final budget proposal would be balanced and not require savings withdrawal.  


ACEC National 


ACEC R&D Amortization Update - March 15, 2024

by: Katharine Mottley, Vice President of Tax and Workforce Policy

American Council of Engineering Companies


I want to provide an update on discussions in the Senate on the House tax bill (H.R. 7024), and where it all fits into the upcoming calendar. The Senate is in session this week and next, and then Congress will be on recess from March 25 through April 5. They return to D.C. the week of April 8.

At this point there seem to be two paths forward:

On a recent coalition call, it was also pointed out that starting the process of moving a bill through regular order in the Senate can be what gets Senators to negotiate in earnest.

Our ask remains the same: continue to use our action alert to reach out to Senators and ask them to support H.R. 7024 and its fix for R&D amortization. If any of your members has the opportunity to see their Senators over the Easter recess, please let me and Steve Hall know and we can work with them on messaging.

We know this has been a long process and I want to thank you for your continued engagement –




Tax Package Passes House with R&D Fix  - February 19, 2024

On January 31, 2024, the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 7024, the Tax Relief for American Families and Workers Act of 2024, legislation that will provide engineering companies with relief from crippling tax increases and restore incentives to promote cutting-edge R&D.


Why it matters: The R&D amortization issue has been a priority for ACEC's advocacy efforts due to its significant negative impact on America's engineering industry.

The bottom line: The House voted overwhelmingly to pass H.R. 7024 by a vote of 357 to 70. This sends a strong signal to the Senate to follow the House and approve its version of the bill.


To gain a better understanding, we recommend watching these brief video clips from ACEC National.

 America's Engineers Call on Congress to Fix the R&D Tax

The Real Effects of R&D Amortization 



Background of the R&D Bill

Since 1954, Section 174 of the federal tax code allowed businesses to deduct qualified research expenses in the year those costs were incurred. Congress created the related R&D tax credit in 1981. 

These long-standing rules provided for a current tax benefit that matched up with current expenditures.  This structure helped existing and startup businesses see immediate tax benefits for funds spent on innovation.


As part of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, Congress changed how taxpayers write off R&D expenses. Starting on January 1, 2022, firms could no longer write off R&D expenses in the year they were incurred and now must amortize those expenses over five years in most cases.

Key Points:




ALASKA December 2023 Update

Article IX, Section 12 of the Alaska Constitution and AS37.07.020 direct the governor to prepare and release a proposed operating, capital, and mental health budget by December 15. Additionally, the statute requires the release of any proposed tax or revenue-raising measures, if any, along with a six-year capital spending plan and a 10-year estimated sources and uses revenue/spending plan. 

Also, on or before December 15, the Alaska Department of Revenue will issue its Fall Revenue Forecast. Given that Alaska's revenue stream is largely based upon North Slope oil production, the department's forecast represents a baseline for the legislature when reviewing the budget. The 2023 Spring revenue forecast estimated oil prices to average $73/barrel and production to average 485,000 barrels/day through the fiscal year. Since July 1, oil prices have averaged between $84-$85, with production perhaps slightly lower than projected. 

In 2020, the governor proposed legislation to allow lotteries in Alaska and in 2023, legislation related to carbon capture sequestration, suggested the potential for significant new state revenues. The legislature did not act on the gaming legislation and passed one of the carbon capture bills, but expert testimony downplayed the likelihood of significant new revenues. The remaining carbon-related legislation is available for action beginning in January. For now, Alaska's revenues remain tied to oil production and the Permanent Fund.

The legislative approved FY2024 budget included a revenue surplus. Adding the governor's June veto reductions and higher oil prices, the state surplus will be significantly higher. The likelihood of a veto override is slim, given the high vote threshold (45/60). However, there are supplemental budget needs and considerable demand for additional education and capital funds, so expect a spirited budget process.

The Second Session begins January 16, and the 121st day is May 15.


ALASKA November 2023 Update

The 2nd Session of the 33rd Alaska State Legislature will convene on January 16, 2024. Unless extended, the Session will adjourn on or before May 15, 2024.

There were no state elections in 2023; however, due to the resignation of Representative Josiah Patkotak (House District 40), the governor will be making an appointment to fill that vacant seat. Former Representative Patkotak became Mayor of the North Slope Borough following the October municipal election.

Since the beginning of the fiscal year (July 1), oil prices have trended higher than the $73/barrel forecast, which, if higher prices hold, would result in a considerable revenue surplus. The Department of Revenue will release a Fall Revenue Forecast in mid-December. The governor will release his proposed FY2025 operating & capital budget on or before December 15.

An area of particular focus during the 2nd Session is the budget, including the increased challenge for the AK Permanent Fund to grow while distributing a 5% Percent of Market Value (POMV). State government operations rely heavily upon POMV distribution, as does the dividend. Given that 2024 is an election year, I expect adjournment to be intense, much like the end of the 1st Session earlier this year.

Closer to ACEC interests, I expect a concerted effort by the administration and legislative leadership to advance the matter of assuming state primacy on Section 404 permitting. Senate Joint Resolution 12 (SJR12) was introduced on May 12 and passed the Senate on May 15! The resolution seeks to secure federal funding for state costs in managing the permitting function and request the creation of a stand-alone EPA office for Alaska, separating it from the current Region X office. House Speaker Tilton assigned SJR12 to one committee of referral in the House. An early signal could come in the governor's proposed Department of Environmental Conservation budget.


ALASKA General 2023 Session Update



National wanted to report on a recent meeting we had with Mayor Landrieu's team at the White House, and specifically on some action items they've asked us to assist with. The focus of the meeting was the infrastructure roadshow, where we walked through a number of recent EEA award winning projects as options for roadshow events that showcase industry innovation in transportation, water, green buildings and other transformational projects. As we've discussed before, the roadshow has a number of key goals – showcasing how our industry delivers value in the built environment and inspiring future generations to pursue a career in engineering are among them -- but a key goal is showcase examples of successful projects as a way to lay the groundwork for the next big infrastructure program to replace IIJA. The White House team gets this and going forward will continue to work with us and our association partners to provide high level speakers in support of these events. 


During the meeting, the White House team also asked us for any intel on new project starts and groundbreaking events that might be good candidates for the President or others in the administration to attend. They're particularly interested in manufacturing facilities (that might be happening because of the CHIPs bill for example) or water projects (including western water and projects for the tribes), but they seemed very open to all options with respect to projects that are moving forward because of IIJA or other recently enacted initiatives. This leads us to action item #1 and where we need your help -- please alert us to any projects in your respective states that are moving ahead because of IIJA or other recently passed initiatives (such as the Inflation Reduction Act or the CHIPs Act), as we'll want to take advantage of the opportunity to showcase not only the impact of the project to the community but also the critical role our member firms play in making the project a success.


We also discussed workforce issues -- they're very much aware of ACEC's advocacy in support of more H-1B visas, but the White House team was particularly interested in learning more about how our firms are working with 2-year colleges to design curriculums that meet the needs of engineering firms looking to fill non-engineer positions, such as surveying, CAD operators, and other support positions. We have some examples of this already but could use your help in identifying additional examples in your states of how our industry is working with 2-year colleges and trade schools as part of the effort to solve the talent challenge – action item #2.


Action item #3 is Permitting Reform – while Congress and the Administration look at options for streamlining NEPA, the White House has asked us to identify the top 2-3 permitting challenges and reforms needed at the state level, examples of challenges and regulatory bottlenecks that are within the governor's purview to fix. Please let us know if you have specific examples that we can share with Mayor Landrieu's team.


Steve Hall

Senior Vice President for Advocacy



For more information on ACEC of Alaska, please contact us at, or mail at PO Box 240543, Anchorage, AK 99524

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