Clough, Jebe, Liebelt & Mertz apply for vacant Assembly seat on deadline day

Five people have applied for the vacant District 1 Juneau Assembly seat. They are Albert Clough, Cheryl Jebe, Arnold Liebelt, Douglas Mertz and Barbara Sheinberg.

Clough was an assembly member from 1992 to 1995 and would like to serve again on a temporary basis.

“As a resident here for pushing 50 years, I think I’m fairly conversant with what’s going on around town and I think I can help keep the city moving along in the proper direction at the proper pace working with the team that’s down there and then come fall, go back to doing other things,” Clough said.

He retired last year as the Department of Transportation’s Southeast Regional Director. Clough served on the city’s Eaglecrest board, airport board and is chair of the Eaglecrest Foundation. He’s also a seasonal pilot for Wings Airways.

Jebe ran for mayor in 2012 against Merrill Sanford. She says she didn’t run in the last municipal election because she supported Greg Fisk.

“I’ve done budget surveys for the borough as a part of the League of Women Voters and I just feel that I want to step forward and serve in whatever capacity I can to help my community,” she said.

Jebe is retired. She worked 17 years with the state in different capacities, including as an associate attorney with the Division of Retirement and Benefits. Jebe also worked several years for the Alaska Public Employees Association. She’s previously served on the Docks and Harbors Board.

Liebelt sees the vacancy as an opportunity to get involved in city government. He says Juneau is facing pressing issues.

“The state fiscal challenges right now are definitely going to trickle down to communities and Juneau is going to be impacted by that as well. I want to make sure that we’re able to live within our means,” Liebelt said.

Liebelt worked for the state for 22 years, most recently as a policy analyst for the Governor’s Office of Management and Budget. He’s currently unemployed. Liebelt is on the city’s Douglas Advisory Board and has served as president of the Juneau-Douglas Ice Association.

Mertz says it’s time he put his experience with local government to good use. Mertz has been an attorney in Juneau since 1980.

“I’ve litigated and have dealt with legal issues for government and for private individuals and private businesses and in the course of that, I’ve come to know all the local issues pretty thoroughly so I can hit the ground running on service on the assembly,” Mertz said.

He worked for the state as an assistant attorney general for more than 15 years before starting Mertz Law in 1991. He says he’s semi-retired and can devote time to being on the assembly. Mertz is a former president of the Juneau World Affairs Council and of the Juneau Montessori Center board.

The assembly plans to interview the applicants Jan. 11 and make a final decision Jan. 12. The nominating period for the March 15 special election for mayor runs from Jan. 15 to Jan. 25.

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