I work in construction management in Alaska (18 years) and found the claims of $27 million of earmarks from Mayor Palin of Wasilla, AK, highly questionable. Research proves that the numbers reputed by the left wing media is a smear attack against Governor Sarah Palin.
Because the earmarks included “Wasilla” in the description, each is attributed (falsely) to the City Mayor. Many are the Alaska Railroad, AK Dept of Transportation, and Borough (AK version of county) and others. The number also includes fiscal year 2003. From the data available below, less than $6 M can be inferred as requested by the City. My figures are directly from “Taxpayers For Common Sense”.
$27,250,000 attributed to Wasilla area during 1996-2002 including AKRR, DOT, Borough, City, etc. on the data sheet$5,750,000 might be assigned to the City of Wasilla requests$21,500,000 others in the Wasilla, AK area
Posted Earmark Totals Specifics:
[Not City Earmarks]$1,000,000 Transportation FY2000 Wasilla intermodal facility$15,000,000 Transportation FY2001 Girdwood to Wasilla, Alaska, commuter rail project$500,000 Transportation FY2002 Federal lands: Mat-Su Borough/Wasilla, Alaska$2,500,000 Transportation FY2002 New starts: Wasilla, Alaska, alternative route project$900,000 Omnibus FY2003 Wasilla Intermodal Facility$800,000 Omnibus FY2003 Wasilla Airport, AK$800,000 Omnibus FY2003 Mananuska-Susitna Borough for an agricultural processing facility in Wasilla, Alaska
[Possible City Earmarks but not confirmed]$500,000 VA-HUD FY2001 Kids are People, Inc. for a transitional living program for homeless youth and an emergency shelter in Wasilla, Alaska$500,000 Omnibus FY2001 Life Quest Community Mental Health Center in Wasilla, Alaska$1,000,000 CJS FY2002 Wasilla Regional Dispatch Center in Alaska for technology and communications upgrades$600,000 Transportation FY2002 Bus and bus facilities: City of Wasilla bus facility$1,500,000 VA-HUD FY2002 Wasilla, Alaska water and sewer improvements$750,000 Omnibus FY2003 City of Wasilla, Alaska for a regional dispatch center$900,000 Omnibus FY2003 Wasilla, Alaska for water and sewer improvements
The earmarks appear similar to infrastructure and capital service projects typically requested by small communities across the nation.
In addition, people comment on a $20 Million debt for the City of Wasilla. My research has shown the majority of debt is legitimate State of Alaska loans for the above projects and similar.
Based on my research (a concept foreign to the Obama campaign and the media journalist) Mayor Palin acted in a fiscally responsible manner promoting the growth and infrastructure of her rapidly growing community.