- Associated Press - Thursday, January 19, 2017

JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) - Minority House Republicans have laid out their priorities for this session, which include further budget cuts, a spending limit and defending state oil tax policies.

House Minority Leader Charisse Millett credits existing tax and tax credit policies with increased oil production and spurring exploratory work that led to recent North Slope finds.

Rep. Dan Saddler says it would send a bad message to the investment community if lawmakers wanted to reconfigure the tax structure again.

The Legislature last year made oil and gas tax credit changes that didn’t go far enough for minority Senate Democrats and House majority members, who want to revisit the issue. The House majority is largely comprised of Democrats.

In reviewing oil tax or credits, Republican Senate President Pete Kelly says the goal should be production.

Millett says other House minority goals include protecting the yearly check Alaskans receive from the state’s oil-wealth fund and making changes to a sweeping criminal justice bill passed last year.

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