CBJ looks for a new lobbyist

The city and borough of Juneau is in the market for a new legislative lobbyist.

Long-time lobbyist Clark Gruening retired at the end of July after more than 25 years with the CBJ.

Mayor Merrill Sanford says Gruening helped Juneau on many important projects. “He was integral working on those different ways of combating the capital move issue, and that was three or four times, so those were all big, big important things for the city and borough of Juneau.”

The CBJ assembly Monday night was given a list of nine potential candidates. The “shortlist” was selected from a 61-page 2013 Lobbyist Directory put out by the Alaska Public Offices Commission.

The top four candidates are Linda Anderson from Fairbanks, Wendy Chamberlain from Juneau, Mark Hickey from Juneau, and Douglas resident Raymond Matiashowski.

City manager Kim Kiefer says the candidates have multiple municipal clients. “In discussion with the mayor, we thought they have experience already working with municipal clients, and so we looked at those that had more than one municipal client, and that’s how we came up with those four. And I have asked them if they’re interested and all four of them are interested.”

A subcommittee of assembly members Jesse Kiehl, Carlton Smith, and Randy Wanamaker will meet Friday morning and work with city manager Kiefer to decide how to move forward. For a professional service contract, the city will issue a request for proposals.

Sanford says the hope is to get a new CBJ legislative lobbyist on board within the next two months.

In his most recent contract with the city, lobbyist Clark Gruening was making $60,000 annually.