School districts and communities across the state have been looking forward to using the stimulus money for programs and projects they need but haven't been able to afford.
But under Palin's plan the $93 million targeted for education would be used to supplant the state's spending in that area.
"Education would still get those funds, they just wouldn't get them in an additional payment," Rehfeld said.
Bottom line: Schools would not get the extra money they were counting on.
Another $20 million in community revenue sharing would also be re-directed to school maintenance projects.
Senate leaders don't like this idea because only a few school districts would benefit and not the entire state.
"It takes the balance we've been creating and spent a lot of time on and kind of turns it topsy-turvy," Sen. Bert Stedman, co-chair of the Finance Committee said.
Under the current plan, communities can use the money as they see fit. Anchorage, for example, would receive about $8 million extra in community revenue sharing.
For communities nervous about losing this money, relax.
"To go from a stimulating philosophy to a supplanting philosophy is probably something that's not going to happen," Stedman said.
"Supplanting is not a good idea," Senate President Gary Stevens said. "We have an opportunity to really do some good things for our districts. I think we should take advantage of it."
There's also the question of whether it's legal for the state to use stimulus funds to supplant general fund spending.
"My analysis has shown the state probably is legally justified in doing that under the letter of the law, but the question is does it meet the intent of the stimulus act," said Larry Persily, House finance aid. "Is it good policy?"
A policy question that may be too hard to answer with just a few days left in the session -- Senate leaders say the plan should have be in the hopper about a month and a half ago to be incorporated in the budget.
For the most part lawmakers are moving quickly on the budget. A Senate and House conference committee approved the operating budget Tuesday morning, so it goes back to both chambers for a final vote.
There have been rumors circulating halls that we might see an early adjournment. Senate leaders confirmed that this was being discussed and noted that if they adjourn on Friday the governor might still be on her way back from her trip to Indiana.
Contact Rhonda McBride at email@example.com