Deadline for applications for Kerttula’s seat

House Speaker Mike Chenault & House Minority Leader Beth Kerttula held a joint news conference last week, after Kerttula announced she was leaving the legislature. Photo by Skip Gray/Gavel Alaska

House Speaker Mike Chenault & House Minority Leader Beth Kerttula held a joint news conference last week, after Kerttula announced she was leaving the legislature. Photo by Skip Gray/Gavel Alaska

Today is the deadline to become a candidate to represent Juneau’s House District 32 in the Alaska Legislature.

Tongass Democrats opened the application period on Wednesday for registered House District 32 Democrats who want to replace Rep. Beth Kerttula.

After 15 years in the seat, Kerttula resigned last week to take a fellowship at Stanford University’s Center for Ocean Solutions.

Tongass Democrats’ chair, Nancy Courtney, says letters of intent and resumes should be emailed to tongassdemocrats@gmail.com.

She says a committee has been organized to go through the resumes and pare down the list. Those making it to the first round will be asked to respond to a questionnaire, and some will be selected for personal interviews.  Courtney says a list of three nominees will be sent to Gov. Sean Parnell by February 4th.

The governor then has 30 days to appoint someone from the list. That person must be confirmed by House Democrats.

When Kerttula was first elected to office in 1998, she represented House District 4, which was primarily downtown Juneau, Douglas, and out to the airport.  After the 2010 census, the district was expanded to include Petersburg, Tenakee Springs, Skagway and Gustavus.

The district will change again for the next election, with downtown Juneau, Douglas, Haines and Skagway together in House District 33.  Juneau’s Mendenhall Valley, Auke Bay and beyond will be House District 34. Petersburg will be paired with Sitka in House District 35.