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Old 02-04-2016, 03:49 PM
 
Location: SE Alaska
2,055 posts, read 964,469 times
Reputation: 1714

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Quote:
Originally Posted by pittsflyer View Post
That's because the state refused to develop roads back in the hay day...
Roads to where? Ambler, for instance?

Locals fight 211-mile Alaska road as megaproject spending continues | Alaska Dispatch News
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Old 02-04-2016, 04:29 PM
 
5,762 posts, read 9,521,978 times
Reputation: 3767
You know, it's possible to run a government and government services in the north on a much leaner budget than what Alaska enjoys today - just look at the budgets for Russian regions like Chukotka or Sakha, or the municipal budget of Murmansk compared to Anchorage.

But there are certainly tradeoffs in terms of the variety of services available to average citizens...
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Old 02-04-2016, 04:43 PM
 
4,718 posts, read 8,232,767 times
Reputation: 2138
I realize this is controversial and not saying I would even support these being built at this point.

But one would think a road to Juneau and Nome by now would have been built for starters.

For safety reasons there was a town in SE that needed one bad, I want to say it was King Cove? and IIRC they had funding but couldn't get permission to build it from the Feds.

At this point the Knik Arm Bridge should die - but years ago that wouldn't have been a bad idea, especially because it gives you an alternate route in and out of Anchorage. So when the Glenn is shut the minions that go back and forth between Anchorage and the Valley have another way.

Not to mention that some of the highways are pretty bad in the state as well...

Now - TableMtn makes a good point too. IMHO, You get what you pay for. Cheaper options are available. And in fact, Alaska has a lot of areas wiht this option. There are no property taxes at all. They are also areas without services or services with long, long long response times. Like Fire, Rescue, and Police. No road maintenance either. I'm not saying we should be over paying for them or not tracking how taxes are being spent either.
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Old 02-04-2016, 05:31 PM
 
4,093 posts, read 1,545,805 times
Reputation: 2565
Outside of schools and medicade contractors have gotten fatter than hogs on davis bacon projects. Now if you even suggest they are over priced they get indignant and scoff back at you. It will take a lot pain for contractors to realize that the gravy train is over, not getting ready to be over soon or in a few years but the piper is here and if they keep insisting on 15k to dig a hole and fill it in with gravel you are going to go under.


I could hear the indignation in the contractors voice when he started talking about the Russians who were doing the same work for 1/4 of the price on all non govt work that did not require licencing and bonding. How dare he not get his fat pork wages


Now if someone was building a Conoco tower I would definitely look at the technicals a lot closer, but digging holes, gravel and basic concrete work is not rocket science.


So its just going to be a waiting game while the fat hogs lean out so that the rest of us peasents can actually participate in the economy as actual owner class.
The contractors are the ones that ran up costs on the bond projects which is the 3rd gorilla in the room that we cant get out of because the contractors already collected their inflated pay and it is now bank debt. The state should have been squeezing contractors a long time ago. If they get indignant then you cut projects until they get hungry.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dakster View Post
I realize this is controversial and not saying I would even support these being built at this point.

But one would think a road to Juneau and Nome by now would have been built for starters.

For safety reasons there was a town in SE that needed one bad, I want to say it was King Cove? and IIRC they had funding but couldn't get permission to build it from the Feds.

At this point the Knik Arm Bridge should die - but years ago that wouldn't have been a bad idea, especially because it gives you an alternate route in and out of Anchorage. So when the Glenn is shut the minions that go back and forth between Anchorage and the Valley have another way.

Not to mention that some of the highways are pretty bad in the state as well...

Now - TableMtn makes a good point too. IMHO, You get what you pay for. Cheaper options are available. And in fact, Alaska has a lot of areas wiht this option. There are no property taxes at all. They are also areas without services or services with long, long long response times. Like Fire, Rescue, and Police. No road maintenance either. I'm not saying we should be over paying for them or not tracking how taxes are being spent either.

Last edited by pittsflyer; 02-04-2016 at 05:40 PM..
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Old 02-04-2016, 08:28 PM
 
4,718 posts, read 8,232,767 times
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Good, Fast, and Cheap - pick any two - doesn't always apply to gov't contractors. And unfortunately, there is political pressure to get things done, which is why slow, expensive, and mediocre are sometimes the norm. This isn't an AK problem, it's a USA problem.

And I as I found as I dealt with a lot of contracts for the government agency I worked for. If you award the contract to a company you wanted and another company you didn't want to hire, wanted it - they buy out the winner, sometimes as a hostile take over and then get the contract regardless. Which at times was to our dismay. Even if we put in a non-assign clause, it doesn't work when one company completely buys them out.

Construction is supposed to really slow down, so we will see if prices fall or not.

Oil has been whipsawing all over.... Fast moves up and down. I keep wondering which way it will "break out".
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Old 02-04-2016, 09:53 PM
 
Location: NP
573 posts, read 775,497 times
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Highway design and construction won't slow too much. Even though there won't be any new state money allocated to it, Alaska is still slated to receive over $500,000,000 each year from 2016 to 2020 from the recently enacted federal highways bill.
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Old 02-04-2016, 10:51 PM
 
Location: In my own world
878 posts, read 1,313,834 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dakster View Post
...

Oil has been whipsawing all over.... Fast moves up and down. I keep wondering which way it will "break out".
Computer algorithm wars between short sellers and those squeezing them. The latest moves up are because the trade became too crowded on the downside. Even that move up several months ago to the $50 range had nothing to do with fundamentals, but massive short squeezes.

I wouldn't hold out any hope for oil to "break out" to the upside. There is an absolutely staggering glut of crude on the market right now which can only be corrected by increased consumption or decreased production. Consumption is out of the question given the current global economic situation. That means production needs to slow. Good luck telling people to stop pumping and selling oil when their life depends upon it.
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Old 02-05-2016, 02:42 AM
 
1,532 posts, read 880,285 times
Reputation: 1124
Quote:
Originally Posted by 6.7traveler View Post
^Ok if kids are paying to participate I retract my statement and have no problem with that. It seems like the travel budget for sports would be quite high for more remote schools to travel places but I guess not.
I have no idea what my current district spends on travel but the whole team doesn't travel. Only a certain number of kids (less than 10). Often times flight costs are split between both schools. Girls will travel from village A to B and the B boys will travel on the back haul to village A.

In my precious district the operating sports budget for all sports (xc, volleyball, and bball) was $25k for this school year. 7 schools had to share that amount.

The school I was at last year was stuck with a $42k a year water bill. It increased $12k a year. One reason our jobs were cut. Increased operating costs.
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Old 02-05-2016, 11:03 AM
 
4,718 posts, read 8,232,767 times
Reputation: 2138
NomadicBear - Yes, I can see the "technicals" are taking oil on its ride and you can see some waves of profit taking... Even the last plunge was after a nice head and shoulders pattern hit. I have found that tracking oil fundamentals are tough to forecast what the true price of oil should be. One the reason if you are a US resident you are not supposed to be able to electronically trade oil as at one point they thought traders were artificially increased the cost, yet when that rule came out oil still continued its climb.

I don't think anyone is going to purposely slow down pumping even though they are talking about it (trying to manipulate the oil market). But of course something weird happen can and all bets are off...
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Old 02-05-2016, 09:56 PM
 
Location: interior Alaska
3,051 posts, read 2,372,730 times
Reputation: 7948
Quote:
Originally Posted by Haolejohn View Post
I have no idea what my current district spends on travel but the whole team doesn't travel. Only a certain number of kids (less than 10). Often times flight costs are split between both schools. Girls will travel from village A to B and the B boys will travel on the back haul to village A.

In my precious district the operating sports budget for all sports (xc, volleyball, and bball) was $25k for this school year. 7 schools had to share that amount.

The school I was at last year was stuck with a $42k a year water bill. It increased $12k a year. One reason our jobs were cut. Increased operating costs.
Yeah, it's similar here. IIRC schools are legally obligated to spend a large percentage (I want to say it's like 70%?) of the funds they get from the state directly on instruction. The remaining 30% has to cover things like utilities, support staff, etc... If I'm remember this correctly, this makes me think either the overall operating budgets of these districts spending millions on sports must be either astronomical in total, or they're getting a lot of their sports funding from non-state sources.
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