Walker would take Alaska back to failure

When Peninsula residents go to the polls Nov. 4, they have a clear choice. Continue along a path to prosperity — or return to the failed policies of the past.

Your vote can keep Alaska’s oil tax working for the good of us all — and advance a gas pipeline project that could actually be built. A pipeline that ends right here on the Peninsula.

Last August, our part of Alaska voted overwhelmingly for hope and a bright future by voting to let oil tax reform work. One glance out the window explains why 70 percent of Peninsula voters said no to Ballot Measure 1.

Tax reform is producing huge results in an area many once wrote off as too old to resuscitate. It’s brought new players, new exploration wells, new jack-up rigs, 3-D seismic over large chunks of the basin — and the first new production platform since the mid 1980s.

Tax reform has led to a doubling of oil production in four years and enough natural gas to spur talks of reopening the mothballed Agrium plant.

Statewide, tax reform is now producing more revenue for the state than ACES would, more jobs, more business for Alaska companies and an LNG project that’s closer to reality than it’s ever been.

Despite the reality of tax reform, the Walker/Mallott team wants to return to a tax policy that saw Alaska lose 200,000 barrels of oil/day at a time when production increased in every other oil-producing state. They want to go back to ACES and watch the pipeline shrivel up. It was under ACES that Alaska fell from being the number-two producer state to number four — behind California.

The Alaska business community held its breath — and suspended new investment decisions — as it awaited the outcome of the August vote. Wells Fargo’s Alaska Regional Business Banking Manager Darren Franz recently told a business publication that he talked to six customers two weeks before the vote. The six had $40 million in projects they would do if oil tax reform was retained. Another $60 million project would have been canceled if the vote had not gone well, he said.

Up on the North Slope, companies have pledged $10 billion in a new capital infusion over the next few years. That equates to tens of thousands of barrels of new production — and renewed life for the pipeline.

Walker makes no secret of his antagonism towards the companies that made the $50 billion investment to make the North Slope such a good deal for Alaskans. That investment means we don’t have to pay a state income or sales taxes. Instead, we get paid for merely living in the state. Walker has a long history of suing the producers — and losing — but going on to sue some more. Currently he’s suing over Point Thomson, a $4 billion investment that’s key to a gas pipeline.

One of Walker’s pet peeves is the Alaska LNG Project, which is headed to Nikiski and not Walker’s hometown of Valdez. Even though this project has gone further than any other gas pipeline endeavor, Walker favors his own project, which has gone nowhere for decades because it has no gas, no market, no investors — and relies on the state to assume most, if not all, of the cost and the risk.

There is a clear choice for the Peninsula this November. I’m voting to keep the oil boom going and the Alaska LNG Project on track. I’m voting for Parnell/Sullivan, a team that actually delivers results