This profile is part of KTOO’s ongoing coverage of the 2013 municipal election. See all of the election coverage here.
Bill Peters has spent much of the last two decades serving on non-profit, community, and municipal boards. Now he’s hoping to add CBJ assembly to that list.
Peters was 27 when he joined the board of Big Brothers Big Sisters in Anchorage. He stuck with it when he moved to Juneau 16 years ago, and was the first board chair when the state’s three regional Big Brothers Big Sisters merged into one in 2007.
Peters served one term on the Juneau school district board of education.
He also pushed a ballot initiative for a second high school. Peters holds firm to his belief that two high schools in Juneau are better than one.
“I get it. I understand. There are a lot of people in the community that would still advocate that one high school can serve the need and they would probably argue with declining populations. But I would like to think, from a positive perspective, we need to build our economy, we need to bring people to our community, jobs are very important, we need to provide a good education for those people coming, and I think in the long term, we’re going to see that growth,” Peters says.
He says now is the right time to join the assembly.
“Running for assembly has always been on my radar. It’s an open seat, so it’s a good opportunity for me to run. I’m passionate about service in the community, but most importantly, we’ve got some important issues right now that we need to work on,” he says.
For Peters, those issues are affordable housing, jobs in Juneau, education, and access to a clean water supply.
“Last Chance Basin has been deemed that it’s not sufficient. I know the city is doing some work and I’d like to ensure that that work continues to identify a supplemental water supply – that would be Salmon Creek – and then also look to rehabilitate the wells that are at Last Chance Basin,” Peters says.
Peters thinks water could be an issue if AJ Mine is developed, but says the assembly has a responsibility to consider any proposal that comes forward.
“I’m a proponent of economic growth and this could be an opportunity that could have a positive benefit to our community. As an assembly member, I would do what is needed to take a look at that, certainly understanding that any viable option would need to meet state, federal, and city regulations,” he says.
On the issue of solid waste,
“One of the things that I would like to work on is considering whether or not we can bring back the incinerator and whether that could address both solid waste and the sludge. If there was the incinerator option that would work to take care of both those needs.”
Peters is Vice President of Corporate Development at True North Federal Credit Union. If he gets voted in, Peters says he’ll bring a financial background to the assembly, which he thinks will be useful for finding an appropriate balance between revenues and expenditures.