Story last updated at 4:30 p.m. Thursday, June 20, 2002

Navarre running for borough mayor
Morris News Service-Alaska
Citing what he called a lack of leadership in the borough's top elected office, Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly member Tim Navarre of Kenai has launched a campaign to unseat borough Mayor Dale Bagley in the October election.

"I don't believe the current administration is leading by leadership," Navarre said in an interview. "You have to have someone in that position that understands the issues and the people for you to be able to govern and lead."

Navarre said he believes the nine years he has spent on the Assembly, the last two as its president, have prepared him for the mayor's office, an office previously held by his father, George Navarre, in the late 1960s and early 1970s and his brother, Mike Navarre, in the late 1990s.

"The people in the borough know who I am," he said. "I'm going to take the next three months of the campaign to get out and communicate with as many of them as possible to see what their dreams and ideas are for the Peninsula in the future."

Mayor Bagley said he's had his differences with Navarre and is ready for a campaign. The last two mayoral elections have drawn five candidates, and this one may be no different, though only he and Navarre have announced.

"It is always a hotly contested race," he said. "He's welcome to give it a go." One of the first moves Navarre said he'd make if elected would be to start work on a new comprehensive plan for the borough. The Assembly gave the mayor the authority to begin that project a year ago, he said.

"The mayor has done nothing," Navarre said. "To me, it's a great opportunity to engage the people of the borough and ask them what they want the future of the borough to look like and where to go. We gave (Bagley) ample funds and opportunity, and he has taken it nowhere at this point."

Bagley said the administration is working on a request for proposals and will be seeking bids from contractors to develop the comp plan. He said the effort had been delayed over differences with the assembly about how it should be done.