I was both surprised and disappointed to read the ADN editorial board’s opinion piece on “The common thread stalling progress on Alaska’s priorities” (Sept. 12). First, your authors distributed blame and called for compromise on the dividend and state budget, and bemoaned the lack of vaccinations with the COVID-19 surge — all arguments containing merit. Then you placed blame for the homelessness quagmire on the “Assembly that wasted 18 months avoiding the problem.” That was just plain wrong.
The Anchorage Assembly has worked incredibly hard over the past year and a half to come up with creative and thoughtful solutions for providing services to the homeless. In fact, the Assembly approved the purchase of two very satisfactory structures — both well located and needing minimal renovations. As soon as he was elected to office, Mayor Dave Bronson axed the one project and never pursued the other. This administration made no attempt to recognize the national research favoring smaller and centrally located centers — but instead pandered to the angry mob of wealthy Midtown neighborhood activists. His solution was to offer a pie-in-the-sky concept for a $20 million super-tent structure south of Tudor with no details and little planning. How does one achieve compromise when one side has rock-solid plans with real numbers and the other concocts a fantasy on the back of a napkin?
You owe an apology to those Assembly members who worked to come up with a real, long-term solution for helping our neighbors in need.
— John Levy
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