Sen. Bill Wielechowski, D-Anchorage, speaks to his amendment to the state’s operating budget to inflation proof the Alaska Permanent Fund in the Senate at the Capitol on Thursday, April 12, 2018. The amendment was voted down 11-9. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire)

Sen. Bill Wielechowski, D-Anchorage, speaks to his amendment to the state’s operating budget to inflation proof the Alaska Permanent Fund in the Senate at the Capitol on Thursday, April 12, 2018. The amendment was voted down 11-9. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire)

Alaska Senate approves $1,600 PFD

The Alaska Senate has voted to keep this year’s Permanent Fund Dividend at $1,600.

With a pair of votes Thursday afternoon, senators rejected proposals from Sen. Shelley Hughes, R-Wasilla and Sen. Bill Wielechowski, D-Anchorage, to boost the amount of the annual investment payout for every eligible Alaskan.

Senators were still debating the state operating budget by the end of the business day Thursday.

The $1,600 figure for the Permanent Fund Dividend was set by the budget proposed by the House of Representatives and upheld by the Senate Finance Committee earlier this month. The amount is a cut of $1,100 from the traditional formula used by the state with few exceptions since 1982. It’s also more than the $1,250 proposed by the House Finance Committee.

For the rest of this story, visit the Juneau Empire.

Senate President Pete Kelly, R-Fairbanks, listens to amendments to the state’s operating budget in the Senate chambers at the Capitol on Thursday, April 12, 2018. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire)

Senate President Pete Kelly, R-Fairbanks, listens to amendments to the state’s operating budget in the Senate chambers at the Capitol on Thursday, April 12, 2018. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire)

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