tv Campaign 2018 Alaska Governors Debate CSPAN October 27, 2018 12:55pm-1:53pm EDT
lives , $2 trillion, and i write in my i don't think this judgment will change, that it was one of the biggest strategic blunders in american history. sunday night, at 8:00 eastern -- 6:00 eastern on c-span's q&a. bill walker suspended his campaign for reelection days before this debate, throwing his support behind democratic candidate and former u.s. senator mark begich. his republican challenger, mark dunlevy. >> alaska public media and channel two news present debate for the state -- the gubernatorial candidates. , lauren your moderators compton and mike ross. evening, and thank you
for joining us for debate for the state. we are coming to you live from alaska public media. i'm lori townsend. >> and i mike ross. we will post a series of questions to the two candidates for governor. they will cover the big issues facing our state of alaska election. >> other reporters are also. . we will also feature video questions from the communities in the area as well. >> ali answers will be timed. the candidates will also be given an opportunity to ask questions of each other. they will each start with a one ing statement. point determined by a loss. mr. begich, you go first. i thank you for giving a platform to ask press ideas and how we move alaska forward. the environment today is toxic and negative, and i know we can do better than that. i have been campaigning around the state, traveling and
listening to alaskans, and they know we can do better. but they are worried. they worry the state they love is slipping away. we have many challenges. solveg together, we can these challenges, reduce crime, and make it safer for communities all across the state. working together, we can make sure that our education is better than it is today. working together, we can protect the pfd and make sure we have strong fiscal policy for years to calm. be tough decisions have to made. to ensure that we are planning for the future -- not just tomorrow, but 30 years out and for generations to come. i look forward to tonight to having a great discussion about the differences we have. you, mr. begich. mr. dunlevy, your one minute opening statement? thank you. it is a pleasure to be here. but my name is mike dunlevy and i'm running for governor. you have a question -- who will take alaska and where will that
person take alaska? will the pfd be fully funded? -- incident rules being dead last in the country, can we move up in the wrecks of education? we can put our resources to work to produce jobs, revenue, and wealth for alaskans. these are the choices you will be looking out in the next several days before the election. i hope to be your governor. i want to work hard to win your trust. trust has been an issue in this campaign. for the past several years, we have had to look at what politicians say as opposed to what they do. my name is mike dunlevy, i'm running for governor, and i hope for your support. >> the first question tonight is about transparency in government. last year, byron a lot resigned after making what was described as inappropriate comments. whenhe took off in its -- he took office, bill walker pledged transparency, but has refused to disclose specifics of what was said or the
circumstances of the incident. since the conduct of a statewide elected official was involved, does the public have the right to know what was said by mr. milaut? >if you had been in bill walke's choose last week, what would you have done? official, we are held to higher scrutiny. there are questions as to what occurred. there are statements made and folks are not talking about what happened to protect the victim. i understand that and i hope the victim is getting protection and the help that they need. but this does not help with trust in our government. it does not help with transparency. so hopefully, in this short period of time, we will know exactly what happened. again, i do believe we need to protect the individual, the victim, but alaskans should have an idea as to what occurred. you had a lieutenant governor that resigned and another governor that step to sign -- that step decide in the race. -- stepped aside in the race. >> more disclosure, more
transparency is important in these the jewish and, especially when you are dealing with a public official. talking about the issue of transparency is a great question, because i hear all the time about how the government does not disclose enough issues. in all the times i have served in office, i make sure we put everything on the table. when people i hear all the time how government doesn't disclose enough issues, put enough there.tion out you know, all the times i've served in office i make sure, for example, we put everything table. when people called and asked a question, we didn't hide information. we put it out there. more trusto create for our people in this state, you know. they have a distrust of the legislative process, what's on, a lot of deals are being made behind closed doors. they want to see more of that in them.of they want to make sure they have a voice and a part of the process so transparency in a spectrum, we need to put more of it in our government. said during tonight's
debate we will have occasional questions from alaskans around the state. dan.s >> future governors, we want to know what you're going to do permanent fund. >> we've got a few specifics. this year's permanent fund at $1,600 byset the legislature. theakers used proceeds from permanent fund to help balance the state budget. under the previous calculation method. pfd this year would have been close to $3,000 per alaskan. this?do you stand on how should we set the amount of pfd? >> first of all, it's important. the action that the legislature took over the last three years an impact on working families disproportionately to the budget. it was an unfair way to deal with it. right now, the corpus of the about $65 billion. the earnings reserve has about it right now, which the legislature can access
with a simple vote and majority vote. big i would do is put a chunk of that into the corpus, keep it away from these politicians. do is thehing i would percent of market value, making sure we have a formula. right into the permanent fund dividend and constitutionally protect it. race thatne in this has talked about constitutionally protecting it. keeping it in your hands. the value of that would be around $2,100 this year. if you leave it where it is today, it will be in the hands and they'llns debate this issue off-and-on and your dividend over time will disappear. >> thank you. i fought hard to protect the pfd. the pfd has been an institution in alaska for almost 40 years. the permanent fund was late '70sd in the by the people of alaska to save wealth from that period of time generations and the pfd program came in shortly thereafter. it's worked beautifully. problem.as never the the problem has been overspending by state government over the years. a full pfd under
my administration. i fought hard, i voted against 128 which was the first attempt to change the pfd. i voted against sb 26 which was to change thet pfd. i submitted bills, sb 1, to return the full pfd. the current calculation that's on the books, that's been on the books for years is the calculation that i will use. alaskans thatre one of the first actions i will take is going to be to return full pfd to the people of alaska. >> gentlemen we touched on this, but we do want to reiterate hear this from our viewers a lot. do you support the concept of a constitution? the how would would you structure the permanent fund dividend to legislaturee doesn't raid the money to support government spending in when we have low oil prices and what should the split going to the state government and the people of alaska? >> i think it should be a 50/50 approach. alaska never complained about the size of the
pfd when it was subject to the calculation that's been on the forever. it was $700 a year, people didn't complain. if it was $900 a year, people complain. people started to get agitated when the governor vetoed the portion of the pfd. the reason they did that was because they felt that government was sticking their hands in a system that actually worked well. going forward, we may need to have discussions as to what this itgoing to look like, but must involve the people of alaska. we want to take a look at thiser this thing in fact, pfd and the permanent fund needs to have -- we have to have a discussion with the people of alaska and certainly, they need to be involved in any changes to the pfd program or the permanent fund. >> you've already told us this evening you support a constitutional mandate. how do you keep the legislature the proceeds from the permanent fund? >> your question is a great because what has happened, first the constitutional budget reserve, which had 14, $16 million. 80% of it is now gone because legislators took that money. you solve this problem i believe, you've got to
put the pfd into the constitution. reserve, which is a critical part of this, again the legislators have access to this. you've got to take that off the table. put it into the corpus. if you put it into the corphouse it.ticians cannot touch the other idea you've got to make sure it's sustainable. laid out ist i've 50% going to the permanent fund dividend, constitutionally -- that they'll do the right thing over the long term. we need to protect this. suggested tof i've go into education funding and thetitutionally protect education funding over the long haul. >> do you have a rebuttal? >> i do. a vote goingavor to the people either an advisory vote and/or a constitutional amendment. in state affairs in which i was the chair, i moved two bills out of state affairs that would have constitutionalized the permanent
fund. i think it does need to be protected. my point in what i was was itcing earlier worked well for years until government put its fingers in it, but i think it's time we on what thission fund and what the pfd is going to look like going forward, and i think the people need to be involved. have annk we intervection from our panelist. >> follow-up. is for both of you. dividend putting the into the constitution, i think you mentioned the constitutional budget reserve. that's in the constitution, too, and yet you say the legislature raided it. dividend? protect the >> i'm sorry -- >> yes,. >> okay. he's looking at me so i wanted answer it, but first, i want to say one thing about mike's plan. a $1.6 billion hole in the budget, you cannot he's suggesting in the long term. people will lose their dividend in the long term.
hoyou make sure the wording is protecting the dividend for the residents of this state. percent ofhrough the market value. it's a formula that you put into the constitution. the constitution budget reserve formula.create a it's just a fund that they put money into. >> we'll have to leave it there. rebuttal, if you have one sir. >> we need to engage the people of alaska. the ones that actually created this fund back in the late '70s and they need to be of what this looks like. again, the pfd although it was approved by the legislature, an institution for the state of alaska for alaskans in so we need to engage them both i think an advisory vote and a constitutional amendment to make sure that that fund stays intact for future generations. >> all right, gentlemen, thank you. and one more question from from alaskan public media. >> question for both of you. mr. begich, your plan would just $340 million more for the pfd to state government
services this year. plan wouldy, your cost more to pay for the pfd. how would each of you make up cost?at >> well, i think the whole plan, the fiscal plan is what you have to look at. as i suggested you've got to get the permanent fund dividend resolved. also, i would suggest putting 50% in the constitution protecting education, making the that comes out of general fund. the next thing you need to do is make sure government runs as possible.y as there's huge opportunities and third at the end of the day no matter what fiscal plan you have, you're going to have to have a revenue source that solves this problem long term alaska. >> all right, and mr. dunleavy one more response. >> we need to manage our government better. the paper on aup daily basis without seeing api.hing happening with we have medicaid overspending. we have a whole host of issues interms of management issues our government. i believe that if we manage our better, we can save millions of dollars.
shrink the size of government, costs down, and then when we get to the point where governmentaged the well, the people of alaska see that we're managing the government well then we can have a discussion as to what revenue sources we need to look for, but point, i think the people of alaska are ready to look at a tax. >> and that's talk about the budget. it's been a major source of debate the past few years since oil prices dropped. are up, but we know they could go down again. what would you do to stabilize budget situation, new revenues like an income tax or a state sales tax? new cuts to go with state services? and please be specific in your answers. i'll start with you. >> well, i think there's a couple of things you can do. i've talked about how you can do reforms on medicaid, $800 million piece of the puzzle. medicaid, i think it's important for our working families, but i do believe through some innovative the cost of30% of medicaid is paperwork, moving
paper back and forth. i think there's significant opportunity there, but at the end of the day, you know, i know my opponent talks about trust. you have to be honest with the people. a're going to have broad-based some sort of revenue stream to ensure that we have longevity. cannot just bank on the high price of oil. you cannot hope today it's $78 up.bounce that's why we're in this problem. we need to have a balanced approach. barreloday it's a $63 a for our budget maybe put it at that youver goes above put aside back into the constitutional budget reserve to ittect for down side or put into one time expenditures, but if you plan for the high price of oil we will be in this the next generations will pay the price and that is not acceptable to me. the questiongich, was income tax, sales tax? >> i think there's a variety of sources, income tax, sales tax. we have to figure out how to get 21 house members, 11 senators to it. for i'm open to those options, but i will say this. over $2 billion from outside workers that come up to our
don't use our services, pay anything. but we pay the bill for them. we need to have a revenue stream thosensures we capture folks so they pay for some of the services. >> thank you, mr. begich. response?vy your >> when folks talk about taxes, they don't go into details. what kind of taxes? what percentage? who gets exempted? really collect and what are the behaviors that a tax will do? we don't have those discussions. if it'sabout a tax as some type of magical instrument that if you just put a tax on the books everything will be fine. have to manage the government better. in the '80s the people of the constitution an appropriation limit to try to ramp down and confine the legislature's ability to spend a growing operating budget. thated to revisit amendment. we need to ramp that amendment down, similar to $4 billion and at 2% a year.grow once you do that, you have to manage your program better. you even talk about taking the pfd or tax you need
to put those instruments in because if you don't, your government will continue to grow out of control and will be going to the people of alaska year for more taxes o. >> in terms of specific? study to anchorage, i would eliminate that. i would look at eliminating climatologists. over 2,000 funded, but unfilled positions. i would look at those positions positions and what funding we can move to other parts of government to reduce the government. >> all right, now we're going to be giving the candidates a to ask their opponent a question. the format will be 30-second question, a one-minute swar and a 30-second rebuttal. question for your mr. begich, please. >> mark you keep criticizing my approach to managing government youyou have made it clear support new taxes on alaskans but have offered absolutely no specifics. alaskans deserve to know how
much can the average family taxes on pay in new t. you aimn, what will for, who's exempt? please give alaskans some on your tax plan. >> mr. begich. >> first off, i don't have a specific tax plan. have said over and over again, that we have to solve term.roblem for the long we have issues that have been debated for years about a fiscal plan. 80% of thehe point, savings of the constitution budget reserve is gone. we know we have to deal with the fund dividend. we know we have to deal with more efficiency in government, but at the end of the day no it mike,at you put on you're going to have to deal with some revenue streams to solve this problem. and i will be very frank with you. i have managed an operation of 3,000 employees. the city of anchorage we grew balanced budget, made sure we had the public safety that was needed, make sure we the city, 40% of our new revenues came from development because we invested. you manage a large
operation, utilizing those experiences in the state will be toincredible opportunity give a new renaissance for our state instead of where it is now, high unemployment, high crime, not great education in the sense of where we are compared to other states. >> you have 30 seconds for a rebuttal. >> at the forum we had yesterday, you had yes to the tax so thend income question is what percentage, how large of a tax, who would be exempt? >> do i get to respond? >> go ahead. they asked the concepts, i've told you 100 times or less than that because up at all theowed debates, i will tell you that is a conversation of what revenue streams we'll have. mix?it be a will it not be a mix? we have to figure this out long term. it's the same question i would you over and over again. you mentioned three or four things, but your proposal, you the said would have to cut state budget $600 million based on today's budget. about three or $4 million worth of cuts. where are you going to solve that problem? itall right, let's leave there and mr. begich now, you
may ask a question of mr. dunleavy, you have 30 seconds. mr. dunleavy, you will have one minute to answer, and then you'll have the 30-second it.ttal if you would like >> mike, alaskans are struggling with rising crime rates, some of the highest in the country, as i number one. you've been campaigning over and over again telling alaskans you safe,o make sure we're but when asked specifically recently, what are your details of your crime plan, you said it, i'm too busy campaigning. don't you think alaskans deserve to know more details? you regret that statement that you made about maybe after the election you'll have give the details on a crime plan? >> i've been specific in all of forums.tes, all of our when i'm campaigning on the radio. we have to get the right in place.f troopers in we have to get the right number of prosecuting attorneys to move our cases through. up the courtsn friday afternoon instead of closing it friday afternoon. and we have to look at sure we haveo make the right number of folks there because there will be a bit of toincrease in folks going prison. again, the question is going to
be how do you pay for this? we have 2,000 positions that not filled. but we have efficiencies that we all our variousmake in programs. we'll shift some of that money into public safety. theic safety will be one of first -- it will be the first budget item that i fund as beernor because it needs to priority number one. >> mike your record is a different ballgame. the senate,e in multiple times you cut the prosecutors, you cut the attorney's office the court system, the troopers, the treatment programs. things you just talked about that you want to put back in, you cut them all and you wonder why we're number one in crime? so you don't get it both ways. you've got to be for it or it've got to be against right now you're running for office and you have a whole new plan that's made up on the cuts made in your term in the senate. >> quick rebuttal. >> yes. >> so the troopers, the public safety employees association endorsed me two weeks ago because they believe that my plan is going to make alaska
safer. when i was in the senate, i forth a $50 million amendment that would move money into public safety. it was approved by all of the individuals in the senate, it died over inte, the house. i do have a plan and i am going my numberblic safety 1 priority as governor. >> thank you gentlemen. another major topic tonight, education and we're going to -- last april, alaska's fourth and students again scored below national averages on reading and math in the national assessment of progress.l now, alaska fourth graders last year scored the lowest in the entire country. this a sign that we're failing our children and we need to spen more on education, or is it a sign that alaska taxpayers are not getting what money's worth for they've already paid for public education in alaska? >> i've been an educator my career. spent 19 years in rural alaska. alaska's always been concerned meaning the, government. how much money do we get to put
into something? we've failed across the board on demanding outcomes. when i'm governor i'll make sure all fourth graders, all fourth graders can read by the they leave third grade. they're going to be able to read at grade level. is a gate keeper school for any other course they're going to pursue. i would make sure that by eighth grade, all of our kids are proficient in algebra. that, too, is a gate keeper would make sure that our career education, iseer tech in high school also one of quality that is outcomes, but each of these approaches have to demand the outcomes. we have to have reading specialists that are trained up. we have to make sure that from down, we expect that these outcomes in reading, areiciency and algebra there. how do we do that? reallocateave to resources to make sure we're focused on those three core areas. you're going to see our scores go up and you're
going to see kids have more of an opportunity. >> mr. begich your response? >> as i said, earlier about the permanent fend dividend, 50% of funding source that we would put, we would make sure the education is fully funded in the constitution. been the problem. the legislature every single year puts it on the chopping block, at the end of the year, aren't sure if they're going to get a pink slip or not, parents aren't sure if their is going to ber back because of budget cuts. the idea here is to make sure protected,tutionally but also adding in pre-k. the best investment we can make is for pre-k. the brain development occurs for kids between 0 and 5. this is a investment we cannot forget about and i want to make sure that's funded. we need to grow our own. 20 some percent of our educators are from alaska. our university system has started a program, we want to expand that to make sure we are educating our putting into place people from alaska to work in our education system. is we need to make sure it expanded and make sure we have opportunities for young people, not only to go on to two and year colleges, but
vocational ed, internship programs, all the types of things that we need in this economy more than ever. >> do you support using public dollars to provide school choice vouchers for private schools? mr. begich. >> no, i do not. i think the public education important part. my parents were teachers. my sisters were teachers. my sister in laws were teachers and it's the best investment you can make because at the end of the day it gives everybody no are, where you are, what your income is, an opportunity to have a free advance your life in any way you see fit. it's an important investment. differ with my opponent on this. this is public money for public to maken, but we need sure, as i said, before to make sure it's high quality, make sure our kids have the best opportunities. we need to make sure our higher education is reengineered or how it can match our economy today. making sure if you want to be a
nurse today you're not waiting into a programt because every person that comes out of that gets a job, one of the fastest-growing industries healthcare. so i don't support a voucher. i think it's the wrong thing to and can you imagine rural alaska if that's all you had was one school? doesn't make sense, it's wrong. >> i'm not going to take a shot mark. but my family, my entire family history is nothing, but public education. of our kidssent any to private education. mark has and i don't blame him because as a parent you want to have the best possible education for your child. so what i want for all alaskan is the best possible thattion and i believe school choice first is important, meaning we have a situation in alaska right now have public moneys going to private education as part of the vendor process for public schools. we have private individuals that get paid through the allotment process to help educate kids in schools.c we already have this process going on.
what started this conversation ran al years ago is i bill called sjr9 which would it legitimate to do that in the face of the sheldon jackson in 1976. we're a little bit out of whack with the constitution, but my goal is to make sure we have the public educational program for all kids but make sure we have private public partnerships so that we can make this the public education system. >> all right, thank you. list ofre is on the questions alaskans wanted to ask about. >> my name is barbara. i'm wondering whether you be considering cutting the anding for medicare medicaid if you were elected governor. you. i'll paraphrase for i'm sorry that you could not hear that question. her question was whether you be considering cutting the funding for medicare and
medicaid if you were elected and, of course, governors cannot affect the cost can affect, but you medicaid. would you repeal the medicaid if so, how would the 44,000 people who have received coverage under it access healthcare? mr. dunleavy your answer. >> my first order of business the status ofsess our medicaid program. in other words, the management issues again. reports that we've overpaid providers anywhere from to $168 million that we're going to have to claw back or receive penalties from the so the firstnment thing i would want to do is make beinghose programs are run well. i have no intention of kicking people off of healthcare. alaskans should have access to good-quality healthcare, but once again we need to manage these programs well. we need to take a look at how these programs are being implemented. you read the paper, you see news clippings, news articles of fraud in alaska.
our behavioral health approach falling apart because of mismanagement in alaska. we need to manage these programs better, but i don't have any kicking people off our healthcare programs. mr. begich., >> i just heard mike your response. you didn't support governor on and put he put it 44,000 people onto medicaid. he had to do it by executive order because members like you and others in the legislature wouldn't support it. so and i know on this debate views ond different this but no, i think medicaid is an important part of making sure is available for alaskans. there's a lot of working families that depend on that to the sure they have healthcare they need, to ensure that they can go to work or go to school or whatever they're their life more productive and the medicaid program has been very improveul, but we can it. for example, there's not a good preventive healthcare within the system. if you could save 5% just on better preventive healthcare you'll save almost $40 million on the program. anotherhink there's
way. another way. streamlining that paperwork. 30% of the costs, $240 million is in paperwork alone. i think there's ways to save that. of making sure we have better dollars being spent and ensuring we have quality care. it's provided an incredible amount of jobs and $1 billion of federal dollars into our state opportunities for healthcare. >> one of the topics, the topic of climate change. researchers have said that the twice is warming at least as fast as other places in the world. as a state whose economy is reliant on fossil fuels, how do you balance that with the need carbon emissions and let's go to mr. begich first. >> i think it is balanced. open upted helping arctic for oil and gas drilling, npra. at the same time, for example, when i was mayor, we got very aggressive. largest light conversion project in the nation, converting our street efficient lights, saving $400,000 a year.
outoject now that we have at the landfill. it used to be we would burn off the methane gas. sold tos recaptured, the military cheaper than they can buy natural gas. i think alaska has some opportunities when you look around between wind and tidal and geothermal. all the opportunities to lower our emissions in our state. we have a goal by 2025 to be 50% renewable energy. i believe we can get there. i was just in kodiak, an amazing sources are energy renewable energy, not putting emissions into the air. do it.how we have to do our part, but at the same time, recognize who we are as a state. your. dunleavy what's response? >> so we are a resource state and i do support our oil, gas coal industries. it brings jobs, it brings wealth to alaska.gs revenue you know, we have to make sure a balance as was said. we can't throw people out of work by shutting down some of these industries. really a not smokestack state. our contribution to climate
minimal. probably so i think what we need to really focus on is making sure that we have alaskans going to work. we make sure that we use technology when we can to reduce emissions, but in the long haul, alaska's contribution to climate minimal.ce again is >> rich has a follow-up. >> i would like to ask both of you again, both candidates, you've both said fossil've got to develop fuel resources. mr. dunleavy, you say that we can't afford to be the leader. we're negligible, but so is brazil and so are other countries and still we're asking inm to join -- to join taking steps to abate climate change. could alaska not, with its false fuel development, how this we not participate in
as well? >> i beg to differ. brazil has millions and millions millions of people and they do have many, many factories air.ing emissions into the alaska has 730,000 people. our industries are resourcebased, extraction. we extract oil. we extract coal. we extract gas. that's what we do in alaska. that's where we get most of our revenue, that's where we create most ofory wealth so i disagree we are not like brazil. we're not like china. we're not like other states in the lower 48. our contribution is negligible. >> well, we all have to do our part, and i think we can have a balance as i laid out. for example, when you think of the impacts, we're ground zero change.comes to climate when you see acidification of the waters and warming the waters that impact our fisheries, when you look at the spruce beetle, and the impacts of our forestry. we can do our part. if we can meet our goal of 50% by 2025, the contribution to this broader spectrum, plus,
business. people are now building solar opportunities, building wind is a greathere opportunity to take advantage of this and be a much more efficient state. there.l have to leave it let's move on to other voter choices, along with deciding of you will be the next governor. alaskans will also be voting on issue, ballot measure 1. protectrs say it would vital habitat. opponents argue it would bring development and construction projects to a halt. how are you going to vote on ballot measure 1 and if elected would you balance protecting alaskan salmon resources with industry and development? mr. begich. >> well, i'm voting yes on 1, that 40,000 people that decided to put it on the ballot, i believe in public comment and opportunity for people to have an opportunity to tell the public and tell in our case the government what they think is wrong when there's a permit being issued.
one of the few that doesn't on.w public comment but put that aside, your question on the larger thing, how do you balance these things? what i've done all my life, an example i gave earlier about the arctic drilling and working on npra to make sure it's open and available which is putting oil in our pipeline. you have to balance it carefully. with all sides, bringing all stakeholders together. this is an important part of the today.s of it's so toxic as i mentioned in my opening. we have to bring it back, bring ifple together, i don't care they're democrats, republicans, outpendents figure this together. if we don't do this right at the end of the day it will harm us economically long-term. didn't support out in bristol bay when they wanted to do drilling out there and pebble mine, but i support other mines. it's a balanced approach based on the conditions around them and bringing stakeholders together. >> all right, mr. dunleavy. >> thank you. i'm a no. i'm a no on 1. it's overkill. i believe it will shut down a lot of projects in the state of alaska and i'm not just talking about oil or gas or coil, but
sewerpal water and projects, potential road projects and the problem with this is it's going to constrain our ability to develop our state which translates into less jobs, sociallks on some of our service programs. it will be -- it will be problematic for alaska going forward. it will cause investors to shy away from alaska. i think it's overkill. it's too broad. i think we could deal with some of these issues if we need to, bad for alaska. >> thank you. andrew has a question. >> mr. both candidates. beyond ballot measure 1, salmon runs have been declining in some parts of the state. there are different interests, commercial, sport, subsistence. what would you prioritize in managing alaska's fisheries? >> mr. begich. all are i think you part of the process. in the senate we dealt with all those, in terms of sports fishermen.
we brought those other two sports and subsistence into the process. but i think it's a balanced approach. important to our economy in different ways, but subsistence is very important to rural alaska because without their ability to catch their fish, they cannot feed their family and that's an important priority for me. >> mr. dunleavy. >> thank you, feeding one's the most important use of our fish and game. forconstitution calls us managing abundance and maximum use for our citizens. with that said we have to bring users together to make sure that we come up with an approach that's going to grow so we can have consistent robust runs of salmon throughout the state. withng together subsistence users, exports fishermen, commercial fishermen, lay out a plan to get us there, but certainly in times of shortage, putting food the plate is number 1. >> all right, thank you, gentlemen. you've both touched on this topic earlier. we're talking about crime. it has alaskans very worried. the increase in crime across the
state beyond calling for more troopers and other officers, what would you specifically do governor to rein in crime related to drugs and addiction? start with mr. dunleavy. >> i would increase the penalties on those that are dealing drugs in the state of alaska. harsh withpretty those individuals if they're going to deal death to our citizens. the opiate crisis is out of control. i would work with the federal government, interdiction. we have the coastline that's bigger than the rest of the lower 48 put together. i would work with the federal government on potentially prosecuting some of these individuals because they have stiffer penalties at this point. enforcement side, we need to get tougher on these folks that are dealing death. we also need to make sure that do have programs that help folks get off of this addiction off it truly want to get and we have to make sure those programs are research based and actually work, but they would be least two approaches that i would use to deal with the opiate issue. drugs andelated to addiction? >> you bet.
it's a -- it's definitely a major problem. it's the number one issue i hear throughout alaska traveling and what alaskans care about. a couple of things you can do. inad to deal with this anchorage, you have to still fill the trooper positions butt you can go a couple of steps further. for example, like i did. i hired two prosecutors to work directly in the federal prosecution office with the u.s. attorney's office. why? because when you deal with drug process,hrough that they get 10 years mandatory, shipped out of state with no probation. you can work with the postal system to make sure we bring in troopers with drug sniffing dogs, enormous amount of drugs can move through our postal system. resources sove the we will add our resources to make sure you can move 30, 40% less drugs through the system if the right kind of enforcement. we also have to deal with addiction issues. in correctionss need the treatment necessary, those that want to have it. wellness courts are another investment. i've seen the turn-around, 90% of the people who go through
reoffend.ourts do not it's the right kind of investment to have a long-term impact. follow-up.as a >> medicaid funds a lot of behavioral health and addiction an optionalt's service. will you commit to maintaining this service? for both of you? >> mr. begich. >> yes, but i would do a couple more quick things. are let out of prison and let's say you're dealing with in drug treatment program prison, the drug that you're utilizing uses about 28 days, but you've got to get on medicaid, 30 days later. both of these programs are run by the state. aftern't want that person 28 days to come off a high. i've seen it and if they get out of there high they're going to in on the street. we need to make sure their treatments continue, medicaid is part of that equation so i would sure they are taken care of on medicaid. >> we'll have to leave it there. mr. dunleavy. think the question, please repeat it? >> medicaid funds behavioral health treatment including addiction treatment. it's an optional service. would you commit to maintaining
service? >> we would continue to take a look at that program to make sure it's being implemented and help theorrectly to individuals that are utilizing that program. so once again, i have no ofention at this time eliminating any of these better., managing them >> all right, thank you, gentlemen and we do want to ask on the crime topic, do you repeal it completely, do you fix it? mr. dunleavy? >> i would repeal it. the fixes have already aen moved into sb 54, subsequent bill to 91, but i would repeal it because the people of alaska have lost trust bill.s and i believe that we can do better. i believe that we can fill in the holes that are in 91. and again, restore that trust with the people of alaska. >> mr. begich. >> it's amazing on this issue of who passed it, mr. dunleavy was for it and now, he's against it. the issuebut here's with 91. you do have to clear the deck.
it's a bigger issue than just that. as i mentioned earlier you've got to put more public safety on the street, deal with corrections and give them the need.ces they you have to make sure reentry programs are funded appropriately to make sure when people come out of prison that they have the opportunity to move in the right track. invest, as ito said, earlier in the right court system. our court system today, 67% of through theoing system reoffend. through the wellness programs and the wellness court, 90% do reoffend. it's putting an investment in the right place. that's what we need to be doing our corrections issues. >> all right, thank you, mr. begich. it's time now we're going to take a pause. asking the questions. we're going to let the candidates ask questions of each other and i believe mr. begich in this round. >> 30 seconds. >> i want to go back to an issue about in earlier regards to education and i had asked a question about do you support vouchers or not. explanation, mike, but the question is religious schools and other types of that, not home schools, religious schools, are
voucher program as you presented a bill on this, are you for that? >> let me clarify. a bill on aented voucher program. it was a constitutional amendment to allow public moneys private education, but there was no bill. this would have clarified what do as mentioned earlier because of the sheldon jackson case, but am i open to individuals? for am i open to school choice for families so they can have the best outcomes possible? yes, i am. >> this is a clear difference and mike.self as i said, earlier public education is a foundation of a statecommunity, a great in the sense of growing our economy and making sure every child no matter who they are has opportunity. when you think of rural alaska where they have just one school, for example, and you hand them a voucher, where are they going to go? there's no sense out there. public education is the best investment we can make. i'm supportive of public education, i want to put the constitution to make sure it's protected so ewe so it in the future.
rebuttal.ck sends hismr. begich child to a private school. i spent 19 years in rural alaska helping individuals' children in some of our smallest communities. committed to making sure that we have the best public education in this country. turn, dunleavy your what's your question for mr. begich? >> mark, governor walker dropped days oface after negotiations with you and your campaign. now, he's endorsed you as the best candidate to continue his legacy. and what policies are part of walker's legacy will you continue? it be record unemployment, high crime, a bloated budget or are all of the above? alaskarnor walker put first, i give him credit for that. he thought about the future as he heard his speech that gave. medicaid expansion, i'll continue it because i think it makes a difference for 44,000 alaskans. i'm going to continue the pipeline issue, it's on the
10-yard line of the opponent. we have an opportunity to push that over the line. make sure that we have jobs for the future and opportunities. that he's done with tribal communities all across the state has engaged tribal communities for the first time government, give them a voice that they did not have before. will i continue that? will. we need to a declared disaster when it comes to our opioid crisis as we have talked already about crime. you betcha i'll make sure. were in theu you legislature as unemployment went up up, when crime went up waft cuts -- because of the cuts you did, because you spent the time cutting those budgets and that's today.are where we are >> mr. dunleavy. >> crime did not go up because of the legislature. ofme went up because mismanagement over the past three to four years in the current administration. makingent is the key to sure that we have the focus, we're going to put the focus on number one.y as job not all budgetary items are equal. you cannot compare a fast rail study to having more troopers. under my administration and
me,n, the troopers endorsed under my administration, public safety will be job 1. the dubious has distinction of having the highest rates in the nation in assaults, domestic violence and suicide. why do you think alaska is these listse top of and as governor, what can you do about it? mr. dunleavy. of three a father daughters. i live in rural alaska. my wife is from alaska. take this issue very seriously. i think as a governor, once priority, make this a not just in statement, but all the way through your administration, you make sure have folks in place that are experts in this area, that we can develop the laws and approaches to make sure that all individuals, women and men, are and that we make sexual assault the number one issue. we'll make sure that our rape log, which we have a back of rape kits, for example, are processed quickly. we'll make sure that we have the requisite number of troopers all
alaska. state of making sure that we have the policing that we need and also sure that we have the prosecuting attorneys to prosecute these cases is making sure that sexual assault is eliminated in alaska.e of >> all right, thank you. mr. begich? >> i think there's several things you can do in regards to sexual assault, suicide and many issues you brought up. one piece of this puzzle is substance abuse and making sure can toverything we change that dialogue in regards to how we deal with people who issues.stance abuse but along with that i was just with a group of young people. bringsroup i've met with up the issue of suicide. one of the things that's no longer really available in our school system is making sure we have counselors, not academic counselors, but there to help people. also, i've seen young peer groups working together, helping their friends and others signs ofd if they see people that may be in that situation, what they can do to them. we're also seeing another increase of individuals, young
people, being shipped out of state because we don't have enough facilities here to take care of our youth when it comes issues,l health substance abuse and others. we need to put the investment in longmakes a difference term. these are some of the things that i would do. >> thank you gentlemen. let's talk about resource protecting the, environment. both of you have expressed support for drilling in anwar, there areople extremely concerned about the potential effect on caribou. would you address their concern and balance development with environmental protection, first.ich you're >> i would use the same effort i did when i was in the senate working on the issue of the arctic development. at that time, the obama administration did not support it. challenges lot of with people on the shores in the villages, but we engaged the captains, the individual leadership throughout the communities. you have to engage all the stakeholders at the same time. like we did on npra when we sat down with the villages also being impacted and we had a lot of issues with a very sensitive lake there and herd habitat.
balance, but you bring everyone to the table. this is the biggest thing that's amazing in politics today. always this side or that side instead of saying we're going to do this right for alaska. we're going to sit down together, we're going to figure out this problem because at the end of the day we're all here reason, because this great state we live in. it is sitting down with the theerent partners and stakeholders, trying to resolve the issues that are in front of us. i have done it, i've seen the outcome. >> mr. dunleavy? >> we have some of the most stringent regulations on the planet when it comes to developing our resources. we just continue to apply those regulations properly, we'll reduce the possibility of any type of oil spill or accident on slope. so looking at what we've done on the slope over the past 40 years, i think we have a pretty good track record, and i think we rely on those regulations. >> all right, thank you. turning to the long sought after gas line, are you more concerned risk the state will take on by taking the lead in building it?
or are you more concerned about will never be developed at all, if the state doesn't take the lead? mr. dunleavy? >> this is a very good question. and so this question comes up in a lot of the forums and with folks across alaska. we don't have the access to the confidentiality agreements to really understand where this project is. we don't know how much the gas sold for at the wellhead by the producers, we're aresure what the contracts with the asian companies that are contemplating contracting with agdc. we don't know what the cost is between, in terms of the infrastructure itself. until we get in there and take a look at those confidentiality it's difficult to say if this is a project that will return a dollar to alaska a project that will be a boondoggle for alaska. it's crucial to get into those confidentiality agreements answeryou can really these question. >> mr. begich. pipeline, as ihe said, earlier, there is issues that we don't know about, but you've got to look at the project. walker has brought it this far. my belief is we need to continue
to push forward. manage it correctly. we need to make sure that we have the markets to ensure that sold, but not having all of those early dollars it's hard to figure out piece is, butcial i do believe that this is a project. it's been since i was born we've this project.bout we are on the 10-yard line of the opponent. let's push it over the goal line when we get over the goal line we'll know if it's fiscal responsible in the sense of what do with it, but it has a huge potential to create jobs for alaska one monetize our gas and make sure we have a project that can go forward. >> gentlemen, thank you. big picture question. alaska's number one problem during the next five to 10 years? tot as governor would you do address it? mr. begich. >> the first thing we have to do deal with the budget as we talked about, but the number one issue is crime. there's no question. my waytter of fact, on here i thought i was going to be late because i stopped a fight of 13th ande gamble because of an incident that happened there. it doesn't matter where you
live, who you are, you're by it.d we have to have a strong strategic plan. i've put it on my website, i told encourage people to go it. we've got to bring all the commissioners together that deal with health and human services, the law, public safety, corrections. put them together to figure out move forward. to we need to be tougher with our issues in regards to drug dealers out there as i mentioned today, but we have to recognize that this issue does not go away overnight. timeve to work double because i do not want to have people thinking about if they walk out of their home is their or in our case with our 16-year-old, what's he out in the streets and what's there?n out this is i think the number one issue. along with the budget you have to deal with, but long term this is hoy -- how you create a safer community. >> mr. dunleavy? >> it's absolutely public safety. that's the primary purpose of a any government to provide safety for its citizens. the last four years, we've all behaviors. i don't think there's any of us that has not been impacted by
crime, either directly or indirectly. i know, for example, we didn't know where the keys were to our years.r 13 we would go on vacations without locking the doors. car,ke the keys out of our we have an extra dog, we keep the lights on and when we come , it's changed our lives. we've got to get a handle on this. be job number 1 for the next governor. >> we have a couple of lightning and please keep your responses to 15 seconds or simple yes or no will do for these. do you support expanding vote by mail statewide like we do here in anchorage? mr. dunleavy first. >> not at this stage of the game. i want to take a look at it and make sure we wring out any of the -- any of the errors or possible mistakes that could be made in that process. >> mr. begich, vote by mail? >> absolutely. the impact here in anchorage, when the april vote occurred. 80,000 people turned out. number and most importantly, some of the most
neighborhoodsd voted more than ever before. this is the right way. make it easier, give people the by mail vote and vote works across this country in the states that are doing it. >> do you believe that voter problem that affects election outcomes? mr. begich? >> on vote by mail? >> just generally. >> you know, we've seen very little in our state. we've seen some recently that lookedely needs to be at, investigated but over our time at the state dealing with elections, very minimal at all so we have a great system and vote by mail has worked many places across the state. problem?fraud a >> my family got a ballot to vote in the anchorage elections. the systemugs in that need to be worked out. in terms of fraud, you have an issue here in one of the districts, house districts in anchorage that's being looked at. is there potential for fraud? of course, there is. much.tlemen thank you so we have come to near the end of our debate. it's time for closing statements. we're going to get one minute from each candidate.
first.leavy goes >> thank you and to the people of alaska, thanks for this opportunity tonight. a're getting ready for change. you're going to have a new governor come november 6th. i would like to be that governor. i want to make sure that when i am governor, that we look at the issues that we've talked about and not just talk about them, but make sure we put them into action. public safety has got to be job number one for the state of alaska for the next governor. we've got to make this the the country.in sexual assault, theft, opiates, we've heard the stories, we've read the stories. onve got to get a handle this situation. as governor i'll take care of that. we have to make sure we restore people of alaska in their government. returning the pfd to its former calculation, its full be one ofn will also the primary things i do as governor. we have to make sure that we have better educational outcomes for alaskans. you have a choice. future, put at the there somebody who's not a caner politician, and we move alaska forward together.
>> mr. dunleavy thank you. mr. begich your closing statement. >> thank you to all the folks viewing and listening to this debate tonight. hopefully, you'll see some differences between someone like myself, who's given very specific ideas on how we move forward. we have great challenges in education, public safety, making number're no longer the one when it comes to unemployment. providing opportunities for people. you know, i traveled, as i said, earlier around the state, listening and talking to people. i see the hopes and dreams of individuals, but they're wondering what's their future look like? they see the dream of alaska away, but i don't. i believe in what's possible. i can't believe it every single day. about what weking can do to make this state a better place and i know alaskans think the same thing as i talk them. they believe in what's possible. this election is about the future. it's about who will take us to the next 15, 20, 30 years and beyond for the next generation. i would love to be your governor. i look forward to you help and support. thank you very much. >> thank you gentlemen. evening'sudes this debate for the state for governor.
in.k you for tuning >> join us again tomorrow evening at 7:00 p.m. on channel 2 and alaska public media for between the u.s. house candidates don young and galvin. thanks so much for tuning in. have a good evening. ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ while ago as president trump was leaving for indianapolis, he spoke to joint base andrews about reports of a deadly shooting at a synagogue in pittsburgh. >> so we've been following very closely the events of squirrel