Alaska Legislature opens special session called by governor

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JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Alaska legislators have convened a special session called by Gov. Mike Dunleavy when they failed to complete their work by a constitutional deadline.

Lawmakers ended the regular session late Wednesday. Unresolved are state budgets, crime legislation and a decision on how to handle the dividend residents receive from Alaska’s oil-wealth fund.

House and Senate negotiators are scheduled to meet on the crime package Thursday. Disagreements over the dividend snarled resolution on a state operating budget.

Dunleavy’s office, in a release, indicated he expected lawmakers to consider a full dividend payout as part of their budget deliberations.

The special session agenda also includes a measure for school funding. Dunleavy raised constitutional questions about the appropriation lawmakers approved last year for the coming fiscal year. Legislative leaders have stood behind their actions.