SitNews - Stories in the News - Ketchikan, Alaska


Tribal Council Vacant Seat
By David Jensen


January 13, 2007
Saturday PM

On September 14th, at a special Tribal Council meeting, I was appointed to the KIC Tribal Council to fill a vacant seat. KIC had advertised and the ad said that the appointment would be for the remainder of the term which would expire in January 2008.

On January 11, 2007, the Tribal Council met in an emergency special meeting to consider questions in a letter from a tribal member. The question was directed towards the council's interpretation of Article 3 of the KIC Constitution which applies to filling vacancies on the council. After extensive debate with the aid of the tribe's attorney, the council realized that the appointed member should have filed a petition and had his name put on the ballot. The nomination period closed at noon on December 18th of 2006, so that was no longer an option. This issue had been the subject of debate in previous meetings, but the former position prevailed. I did not participate in the debate nor did I vote on the matter.

If the election had proceeded and I remained on the council, any candidate would have had the right to contest the election. If the council had allowed the election to proceed and then decided to give my seat to the next highest vote getter, I would have had the right to contest the election because I would have been denied my right to participate. I have assured the council that I will not contest the elections on those grounds. Other scenarios would be to postpone the election or hold a special election. Postponement would waste time and a special election would cost too much.

The solution I offered to the council was for me to run a write-in campaign in the remaining four days before the election. I would appreciate your vote.


David Jensen, KIC Tribal Member
Ketchikan, AK

Received January 12, 2007 - Published January 13, 2007

About: "David Jensen, a lifelong resident of Ketchikan with 5 children, 8 grandchildren has served several terms as KIC Tribal Council Member and one term as President as well as other volunteer boards in the community. David is a Tlingit Chief of the Raven Dog-Salmon Clan of the Dog-Salmon House."




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