Candidate for District 1 Assembly
Six years on Juneau Assembly, State of Alaska Marijuana Control Board, retired State of Alaska
Do you support additional city funding for a new building to house the Juneau Arts and Culture Center?
This is my last term. I have been on the Assembly for six years, and I felt that there were many issues that are still unresolved; there are many issues that are ongoing, they’ll always be there; and that my contribution in the last six years I think has been of value to the community and I would like to continue for my last three.
Normally, communities in Alaska don’t get involved as much. We do through zoning, conditional use permitting, where we allow day care. The Best Starts initiative that was proposed would expand our role way beyond what we have done before, but I think in an appropriate way. We have to, in times of decreasing day care for families, and we want families to be part of our economy, we want them to live in Juneau, we’ve got to provide them an ability that their kids are well taken care of while they’re working, that their kids are getting quality pre-education, that they’re safe. And the community, just — I think it’s time for the community to step up. Otherwise, we have thousands of kids that are in care (that) might not be the best for them and I think we need to step up.
For Juneau we can talk a lot about safety, we can talk about our personal responsibilities, the responsibilities of businesses. But once it comes down to a crime being committed, our local police department does their job, and then it’s out of the city’s hands. So I think the city has to continue with the police department, they have to support them in every possible way we can. We need to educate the public on what they can do for their own personal safety, personal belongings, their homes. But then we need to advocate with the state – for appropriate sentencing, for appropriate amount of prosecutors and judges. People that then can take the results of our police department’s activities and take those next steps in the criminal justice process.
You can’t build a home in this town and sell it for much less than $200,000-250,000. So if the city could, through incentives with taxes (possibly — that’s a harder one to do since that’s controlled by the state); making land available that takes away some of that cost where the developer doesn’t need to pay for the land and then charge you as part of buying the house for that land. But we have a person within the city, Scott Ciambor, that’s supposedly working on that. I don’t always agree with what he brings back, but I think better minds have to work that out. But right now I don’t have any quick policy initiative that I think would solve the problem.