Homer Alaska - Elections

Story last updated at 5:50 PM on Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Fred Sturman

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


Fred Sturman

As candidate for Borough Mayor, I have been sticking to the issues. On my website, www.VoteFred.us, you can find a comprehensive discussion of many important issues.

I strongly support VOTE NO on both Propositions 1 and 2. These measures would unnecessarily increase the cost of living on the Peninsula. The Borough does not need the money, the citizens do. My philosophy is to give the taxpayers a break.

The most important issue on the Borough is our tax burden. I will introduce and strongly support a revenue cap similar to that of Fairbanks, Anchorage and the Mat-Su. Property tax rates are down but the assessments have gone up substantially. There is a real disconnect between appraised values and sales prices of property. I will work hard to bring this disparity into line.

Over the years I have worked on several initiatives which have been successful at the ballot box. These initiatives were about saving taxpayers' money and exercising your rights. I will continue to support these issues as long as the public considers them important.

Jobs, jobs jobs! This is what we need. To get more jobs, we must have a stable business environment. We must offer those things business needs to succeed: a stable tax structure, low public debt, sustainable government and an educated work force. As we work to promote these attributes, new business will locate here. I will do everything possible to support our local businesses and to attract new business.

We have substantial savings accounts. We must protect local taxpayers by keeping our Borough budget within the limits of Borough income. It makes no sense to increase spending and then tap into the savings account to pay the bills. We can and we must do better with the money we are spending.

School budgets and performance are on everyone's mind. The student population is decreasing while the budget has increased substantially. Something has to give. I will institute a "Caring for Kids" program to help the public be more active in communicating their needs to the school district.

Roads are very important. The Borough is responsible for 600 miles of roads. How to maintain and snow plow, on a budget of one mill is a challenge. We can and we must do better with the money we are already spending on roads.

Borough debt is a new problem. We had about $16 million in bonded debt. Now we owe about $88 million. I believe we need to pay down this debt as soon as possible. No one ever went bankrupt who did not have debt. This fact works for government, as well as for individuals.

Finally, I will work hard to do the people's business in a frugal manner. I need your support and attendance at Borough Assembly meetings. This will be important after the election to help promote change.

I will do my best to promote efficient government. I need your support and am asking for you to Vote Fred on Tuesday, Oct. 4th.