The Institute of Social & Economic Research

The Alaska Citizen's Guide to the Budget

Financial Assistance
provided by:

Fiscal Policy Council of Alaska

Budget Pies
Income and Expenses


1. Budget Pies

Slicing the Budget Pies

Each spring the legislature and the administration get together to pass a budget for the fiscal year that begins the following summer. Although they differ in some of the reporting details, and use some creative accounting to show the change in the size of the budget from year to year in the best light, the legislature and administration are basically using the same numbers. In this section we look at the budget that came out in the spring of 2001 for the fiscal year that just ended, using the numbers from the Legislature. This was the Fiscal Year 2002 budget which ran from July 1, 2001, through June 30, 2002.

The Legislature reported appropriating $5.407 billion for the year for the operations of state government and for capital construction. If we add the amount appropriated for the Permanent Fund dividend and Permanent Fund inflation proofing, the total rises to $7.205 billion. Finally, if we add in what are know as the "duplicated" appropriations, the grand total rises to $8.033 billion.

The grand total appropriation budget can be split into 4 approximately equal- sized pieces categorized by where the money came from and how it could be used.

General Fund—$2.404 billion. Spending on the basic government services comes out of this fund. The legislature has discretion in how this money is spent.

Federal Grants—$2.082 billion. Spending of money from the federal government. It comes with strings attached and is split between operating and capital spending.

The Permanent Fund—$1.799 billion. Spending for the dividend and inflation proofing out of the earnings of the Fund.

Special Funds—$1.748 billion. All spending not in the other three categories. This consists of $.828 billion of "duplicated" appropriations and $.920 billion of spending largely by self-supporting activities of government like the operations of the International Airports.

In this section, we answer 3 questions:

Here is some detail on the 2002 Legislative Finance numbers.

Do you want to go to the source? Legislative Finance produces a detailed summary of appropriations for each year. Legislative Finance Summary of Appropriations for 2001-2002

This section is based on the budget as it was passed prior to the fiscal year, known as the "Enacted" budget. During the fiscal year numerous changes occur to the budget and after the year comes to a close the "Actual" budget, or amount spent, will always be somewhat different. Why the budget is a moving target


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Page Updated April 16, 2003

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