The labor ordinance that was passed on March 26 was flawed in its design. I voted against it for a few different reasons. One is that it is a charter change without voter approval. It takes power from one branch of the government, the Legislative (the Assembly), and gives it to another branch of the government, the Executive (the Mayor).
Our municipal government needs to have openness and transparency when it comes to every issue. However, this was not done in A.O. 2013-037. The Administration started rewriting the labor law in July of 2012 without any notice to, or input from, the Assembly. Neither the public nor the Assembly was given enough time to adequately determine its value and effect.
Furthermore, the public testimony on this issue was shut off. No matter which side of this issue a person stood on, that person still should have been able to testify in front of the Assembly and have his/her voice heard. The ordinance was rushed and simply needed more time and more thought before it was voted on.
Title 21 and land use rules
We passed Title 21 recently after much debate and many public hearings. The Title 21 that was adopted by the Assembly is not perfect. It will undergo a lot of revisions as we try to make it a better land use document. One item I want to look at more in depth is mother-in-law apartments as it applies to single family lots over 10,000 square feet. Not enough public hearings were conducted in this area. I want to look at what we can do to fix this and also make the process more expeditious in the future.
Agree and Disagree with mayor
The mayor and I agreed that the auto emissions programs needed to be repealed. This program was unnecessary and only resulted in costing money for our citizens. I fought this issue for a long time. We got rid of it and it was nice to have a mayor that agreed with me.
The mayor and I do not agree on the kind of relationship the Assembly should have with the Administration. I believe that the Assembly should be a separate, but equal, body. We should be able to work together with the administration; however, ultimately, the Assembly should be responsible to the voters, not to the mayor.
Why voters should choose me
The voters should choose me over my opponent because of one simple issue: experience. I have served on the Assembly for fourteen years and have never slowed down since I was elected. My neighbors need someone who understands the issues and how they affect the average taxpayer.
I raised eight children in Anchorage and I have never forgotten how each piece of legislation has long lasting effects on your children and mine.
Dick Traini is a candidate for Assembly Seat 4-F, representing Midtown.
By DICK TRAINI