Two jump into city races as write-ins

Political newcomer challenges Juneau Assembly incumbent

Posted: Wednesday, September 06, 2000

Write-in candidate Maridon Boario has signed on to run against District 1 Juneau Assembly incumbent Ken Koelsch.

What prompted the 30-year-old to make the race an actual race was that people her age don't vote much, she said this morning. "If I can bring more voices into the race, then both Mr. Koelsch and I will benefit," she said.

Koelsch's previous opponent, Tim June, withdrew from the race last week after meeting with the incumbent.

Boario works summers with William Spear Design, a Juneau enameled-pin retailer and wholesaler. She is employed in the Capitol's documents office during the legislative session a position she described as "nonpartisan."

"We're at a really important time right now, with a lot of things dividing our community," she said. "I want to be part of the vision for Juneau to formulate a plan for the future."

Tourism planning that benefits local businesses, revitalizing the downtown core, and building strong neighborhood centers are her priorities, she said. And securing funding for education in particular for building the new high school "is going to have to be a city effort," she said.

Upcoming legislative elections could make for a better environment, and better chances, for funding Juneau education projects, she said.

With respect to the ballot's flightseeing noise initiative, Boario said she understood "the frustration that led to its being on the ballot, but polls seem to indicate it's not going to pass."

Boario said she will support the city's voluntary compliance program. The program is an annual negotiated agreement on operational guidelines that flightseeing operators reach with the city.

On the road/ferry proposal, Boario said she supported looking into fast ferries. "Our governor is against the road, and our neighbors are against the road," and it's time to develop ferries, she said.

A write-in candidate must be a registered voter and a city resident for at least a year immediately preceding an election, according to the city clerk's office. And the candidate running for either the District 1 or District 2 seat must live in that district.

As with other candidates, a write-in must also register with the Alaska Public Offices Commission or file for an exemption. Boario has filed for an exemption, which means she intends to spend less than $2,500 on her campaign.

For incumbent Koelsch a customs agent and retired high school teacher issues of primary importance in the campaign are the high school renovation and building a new high school, he said this morning. "Getting the new high school going is going to take a pretty vigorous lobbying effort (with state legislators) by the assembly."

Koelsch said he supported the ballot's 1 percent sales tax renewal, funding from which is slated for school maintenance.

Since he and others on the assembly are working on a tourism plan, Koesch said he will vote no on the flightseeing noise initiative.

The road out of Juneau will get his nod, he said of the road/ferry advisory vote on the ballot. "As I go door-to-door, I'm hearing a lot of young people don't have the financial means to get out of Juneau ferries and flying are expensive. This, too, will take some vigorous lobbying on the hill."

Koelsch said he would spend "as much as it takes for a good information campaign."

There are four hopefuls in the mayor's race former mayor Jamie Parsons, arts consultant and former legislator Sally Smith, photojournalist Mark Farmer, and marketing consultant Patty Zimmerman.

As of this morning, small businessman Dale Anderson is the only certified candidate for the District 2 seat being vacated by outgoing assembly member Dwight Perkins, a state Department of Labor official.

Real estate consultant PeggyAnn McConnochie is vying with conservationist Marc Wheeler for the areawide seat.

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