Homer Alaska - Elections

Story last updated at 5:49 PM on Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Mike Navarre

What do the candidates think?

The assignment: Candidates for Kenai Peninsula Borough Mayor and the District 8 seat for the Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly were invited to submit a 500-word guest column. Candidates were given free rein to write about what they thought was most important.

Candidate for Mayor of the Kenai Peninsula Borough


Mike Navarre

After careful consideration and with a lot of encouragement, I decided to run for Kenai Peninsula Borough Mayor.

I have the experience, energy and commitment to tackle the issues and challenges the Kenai Peninsula Borough will face over the next several years and will dedicate myself, as Mayor, to responsible management of our borough government.

I'll listen and work with Borough residents, the Assembly, local governments, service area boards and community groups to resolve issues and find solutions. And, I'll communicate with you, the public, about what your government is doing, why we're doing it and the cost.

I encourage you to examine my record as Mayor from 1996-99. Like then, I will build a strong team to help manage the Kenai Borough. My record reflects conservative and responsible budget management, strong administrative oversight, an open door policy and a good working relationship with the Borough Assembly.

The Kenai Peninsula is a great place to live, work and to raise our families; and, we are facing many issue and challenges. The issues and challenges we'll face include economic, education, public safety, solid waste management, improving roads, and multiple issues with our hospitals and health care.

Education is our most important responsibility. Providing a good education for our children equips them with the knowledge and skills needed to seize opportunities and achieve success throughout their lives. About 65 percent of the Borough's budget is spent on education.

Solid waste management affects all of our communities and is the second largest expenditure in the Borough budget. We have to work to find real solutions, including new technologies, to ensure that we meet our responsibilities efficiently and cost effectively.

Maintaining and improving our Borough owned roads are, and will remain, priorities. Roads are a critical part of our infrastructure and directly impact our residents.

Health care costs are constantly increasing and have many direct and indirect impacts to residents. The cost of health care has direct impacts to personal and family budgets. Indirect impacts include access to health care and the increasing expense in both public and private sector budgets, which can lead to a loss of jobs, an increase in taxes... or both.

Finally, I want to discuss money in politics and campaign contributions. While campaign contributions are an unfortunate component of political campaigns, they do not change me as a person or change the way I approach public policy issues or how I make decisions on those issues. In this campaign I have received numerous contributions from conservatives and liberals; from commercial fishermen and sports fishermen; from developers and environmentalists; from teachers and administrators; from conservative business people and union employees; and, most telling, from long-time political opponents as well as long-time political allies. I am grateful to those who have made contributions to my campaigns and greatly appreciate your confidence and support.

With your help and a responsible approach, together we'll keep the Kenai Peninsula great.

Thank you for reading this article. I would appreciate your vote on October 4th.