Alaska faces shutdown threat amid budget, dividend dispute

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JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Alaska faces the prospect of a partial government shutdown next week amid an ongoing fight over how much to pay residents in the form of an annual dividend from the state’s oil-wealth fund. The long-simmering dividend debate has become more pointed as lawmakers have used the fund to help pay for government. Notices warning of potential layoffs went to state employees after lawmakers passed a spending package Gov. Mike Dunleavy called “defective.” He pointed, in particular, to the House’s failure of an effective date clause. Attorneys for the state and Legislature have offered differing views on what this means, and the attorney general has asked a judge to weigh in.

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