Image courtesy of Tom Arthur/Wikimedia Commons.

Alaskan voters have approved a new measure that will automatically register voters when they apply to receive their yearly oil fund payments.

According to KTUU, Alaskan voters approved a ballot measure that will allow residents to register to vote when they apply for their annual oil fund payments.

Under the measure, residents will be able to opt out of registering to vote.

The measure is expected to cost just over $940,000, according to KTUU.

Alaskans are set to receive just over $1,000 each from the state’s Permanent Fund this year, down from a historical average of $1,140 per resident.

A budget deficit prompted Alaska governor Bill Walker to cut the state’s 2016 payments down from an initial amount of $2,100 per resident.

Last year, residents received a record-high payment of $2,072 payment, up from just over $1,800 the previous year.

In a message posted to social media, Walker said cutting the payments was a “tough decision.”

“We lost 80 percent of our income over the last two years that resulted in a $4 billion deficit. We asked the legislature for help to pass some legislation to balance the budget to get us out of the deficit and unfortunately that didn’t happen,” Walker said.

The yearly payment amounts are calculated using a formula that averages the fund’s earnings over a five-year period.


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