Alaska's Revenue Department projects the state will collect $1.2 billion more in unrestricted revenue this year and next than it projected last fall, thanks to high oil prices. The department projects the state will collect $9.9 billion in unrestricted revenue this fiscal year and $8.4 billion next. That compares to the earlier forecast of $8.9 billion this year and $8.2 billion next.
Commissioner Bryan Butcher says higher-than-expected oil prices have given the state a strong revenue outlook but he says the long-term health of the state's economy and finances depends on stemming the decline of North Slope oil production.
The department is forecasting oil prices of about $114 a barrel this year and about $110 a barrel next year. In the fall, it projected prices for both years around $109.