Monday, March 31, 2014

#AKoil We had a debate ...

 As I had noted on these pages before, Professor Willie Hensley asked UAA Professor Emeritus Dr. Stephen Haycox and me to join his graduate level seminar on Alaska Policy Frontiers this Saturday to debate the repeal of SB 21, the oil tax reform bill enacted last session.

Dr. Haycox supports the repeal effort, which will appear on the ballot this coming August.  I oppose repeal and believe SB 21 should be retained.  Steve Johnson, the Director of UAA's highly acclaimed Seawolf Debate Team joined also to moderate.

The debate was covered by Jill Burke of the Alaska Dispatch ("Experts debate Alaska's oil tax tug-o-war").  Jill's accurately summarized the discussion as follows:

Where Haycox came armed with a general sense that SB 21 had been rushed, industry-led and industry-supported, and that the combination made for a bad origin, Keithley came armed with statistics and charts, data designed to highlight the impending “financial abyss” Alaska will soon face if replacement revenue for dollars lost to declining oil production aren't swiftly located.

The debate was taped and will be made available to the public in the relatively near future. I will post a link on these pages when its available so that readers can make up their own minds about the discussion.

In the meantime, I have posted above a couple of the "statistics and charts" I used during the discussion (they also are available here). Regular readers of these pages will recognize most and understand the points they make.  Pending the video, new readers may get some sense of the points I use them to make by reading a couple of my past pieces:  Alaska Oil Policy|  Missing the Point (Alaska Business Monthly, July 2013) and Rep. Gara's myopic view (Juneau Empire, July 7, 2013).