21 questions for Anchorage Assembly candidates

The Anchorage Daily News asked candidates for Anchorage Assembly in the 2019 election to answer a series of issue questions. Many of the questions were suggestions from readers, including those on Nextdoor. Here are their responses, in some cases edited for length and clarify. We did the same thing with candidates for Anchorage School Board.

THE CANDIDATES (Individual candidate answers to all the questions)

District 2 - Seat A - Eagle River/Chugiak:

Crystal Kennedy

Oliver Schiess

District 4-Seat F - Midtown Anchorage:

Ron Alleva

Christine Hill


Meg Zaletel

District 3-Seat D - West Anchorage:

Liz Vazquez

Kameron Perez-Verdia

Dustin Darden

District 5-Seat H - East Anchorage:

Forrest Dunbar

District 6- Seat J- South Anchorage:

John Weddleton

THE QUESTIONS (All candidates’ answers together)

There could be tough budget times ahead with state cutbacks. What can the city do to make up for those cuts?

The cost estimate for modernizing the Port of Alaska recently doubled. What do you think the city should do?

Do you support the alcohol tax proposed by the administration of Mayor Ethan Berkowitz? Why or why not?

What did you think about Alaska’s efforts at criminal justice reform, which began in 2016 with Senate Bill 91?

What steps have you taken to prepare for this job? What strengths do you bring to office, and what in your life demonstrates those strengths?

How do you feel Anchorage performed in the recent 7.0 earthquake? What can the city government do, or what would you do on the Assembly, to improve seismic safety or emergency preparedness?

What is the largest budget you’ve managed? State the amount, length of time and your level of responsibility.

What should the city do to alleviate the issue of illegal camps in green spaces in Anchorage?


Do you support the Berkowitz administration’s efforts to create a climate change action plan?

What do you think of the job Ethan Berkowitz has been doing as mayor?

Describe your position on crime in Anchorage.

Overall taxation in Anchorage is....too low? Too high? Just right? Explain. If taxes are too high, what would you cut? If taxes are too low, what would you raise?

Describe your position on policies that affect the way Anchorage grows in the coming years.

Describe an ordinance or legislative issue you plan to bring forward as an Assemblymember, and any funding it might require.

Tell us your ideas about transit and infrastructure in Anchorage.

What is the most pressing problem facing your district?


Would you support a law allowing on-site consumption of marijuana?

Would you take steps toward reversing Anchorage’s plastic bag ban?

If you were asked to cut the city budget by 10 percent in the coming fiscal year, in which three areas would you recommend cuts?

What three places would you pick when highlighting Anchorage to tourists?

What other important issue would you like to discuss here?