JUNEAU -- House Speaker Mike Chenault says he's personally torn on the issue of energy relief, as proposed in a recent Senate bill.
The measure would provide every adult recipient of an Alaska Permanent Fund dividend this fall with a voucher for 250 gallons of heating oil, an equivalent amount of natural gas or 1,500 kilowatt-hours of electricity. Sen. Joe Thomas of Fairbanks is the prime sponsor.
Chenault says he's not sure how much the proposal would cost. He says he realizes Alaskans pay high energy costs but says he wonders if the money that would go toward immediate relief might be better spent on utility interties or otherwise bringing longer-term energy to communities.
The bill seeks a longer-term solution and calls on the governor to evaluate other alternatives to provide energy assistance.