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Assembly candidate Q&A: Is the city economically healthy?

Anchorage residents will vote on candidates for six open seats on the 11-member Anchorage Assembly at the municipal election on April 1. To give readers a better sense of who they'd be voting for, the Daily News asked each of the 13 hopefuls a series of questions on their backgrounds and on key issues facing the city. In the days leading up to the campaign, we're printing answers to selected questions in the newspaper, while full responses are posted at adn.com/assemblysurvey.

QUESTION: IS THE CITY ECONOMICALLY HEALTHY?

East Anchorage

• Adam Trombley: Yes. Anchorage was recently upgraded to AAA by Standard and Poor's. This was accomplished through a reduction in bonded indebtedness, an increased in reserves and the suppression of tax growth.

• Mao Tosi: Yes, we have more businesses moving to Anchorage every year, which is creating more job opportunities.

• Pete Petersen: Our economy is doing better than many places in the Lower 48, but more work needs to be done to ensure opportunities remain for future generations.

South Anchorage

• Pete Nolan: AAA bond rating.

• Bill Evans: It is currently healthy. Reducing bonded indebtedness would help. We should be cognizant of future economic repercussions stemming from state and federal government spending.

• Bruce Dougherty: Anchorage is doing well, but that doesn't mean we can get complacent. We need to be investing more in our schools and public safety workers to ensure Anchorage continues to prosper. We can't have economic vitality if our streets aren't safe and we don't have a steady flow of competent youth ready to enter the workforce.

West Anchorage

• Phil Isley: No, I do not believe it is on strong fiscal ground because it is too dependent on the state and federal governments. Too much of our economy is government driven. I think Federal, State, and local government spending accounts for around half of our economy.

• Tim Steele: Yes. Good credit rating. Good policies of paying off bonded debit. Good reserves.

Eagle River-Chugiak

• Bill Starr: At the moment, yes. We have good fiscal oversite and appropriate savings levels. But debt burdens are increasing.

• Sharon GIBBONS: Economic growth in Anchorage is steady but that doesn't mean the residents that live east of Anchorage's economic hub are experiencing the same growth.

Midtown

• Elvi Gray-Jackson: In 2013, Anchorage experienced job growth with 1,000 jobs and an unemployment rate of 4.9%. Industries will continue to grow and the immediate future looks strong.

Downtown- Mountain View

• Patrick Flynn: No, we continually go through the 'boom and bust cycle' because we don't do anything to stabilize prices and taxes. We should plan for the good times during the bad times, and plan for the bad times during the good times. We can't keep skimming money off of the middle class, because there aren't many middle-class people left.

• Mark Martinson: Yes, though housing is a challenge.Assembly candidates on the issues

 



Anchorage