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Viewpoints: Letters / Opinions

Open Letter: Public funds for Governor's ball

By A. M. Johnson


January 26, 2015
Monday PM

Following is the content of a personal email to Ketchikan Assembly persons requesting that public funding not be utilized in the cost of the upcoming governor's ball in Ketchikan. The intent is not to be taken as a slap at the governor or the tradition. It is the objection of using this symbol of celebration with public funding in trying times the current and years out reflect.

Assembly persons:

Gentlemen: Yours are the only email address of assembly members I have on record.

As we have interaction with the folks it is common for each of us to form opinions of each other and others on issues that affect us. Having stated that, an opinion that I formed on Assemblyman Harrington comes from a rather long association in elected office. The opinion is: Mr. Harrington likes to consider himself as a Conservative in fiscal matters ; Unfortunately the conservative nature relates to how he spends his personal nickel. When it comes to spending mine or yours, there is no limit.

The suggestion that he is currently running up the flag pole regarding use of public funds to fund the Governors ball is a prime example. First under the scenario being sold by the Governor and is in fact not in dispute, that the status of funding the State government is going to be quite painful. Why then, unless all the governor balls are funded by volunteer donations, should public funds from any source from any governmental bodies be allocated to a expense such as these balls in times of fiscal strife? I know, other communities funding has been used as a reason however it is symbolic and a really feel good thing to do with a new governor. It is the usual practice to impress the new governor with hopes that future funding will hinge on how much the community coughs up. Now the case of the budget being what is being projected, not only for this year but years out more impressive would be the governor recognizing the strife that is about to be rendered by NOT having ANY ball taking the appearance of rolling up sleeves and going to work on the issue, not dancing about celebrating with the IN FOLKS .

Trust me, I would feel the same were it Parnell had won, or Mallott given the opportunity.

The purpose of the post is to ask that you consider not funding with taxpayers funds or any tom foolery of extracting from some obnoxious interpretation of robbing an existing fund, such as cruise ship or land trust, or what ever funds one might justify tapping. Just a simple NO. We are facing hard times. You fund this event in any amount and the School district, who apparently to this date, have not recognized that they are subject to less funding could will use this governor s ball funding as an example of waste there but not giving them funding desires.

The Arts, the social groups, the women in Safe Homes? They all may use any funding to the Governors ball to make their case of money available.

If the community is going to be asked to share in the pain of the State budget woes, then what better place to lay down a marker. It would be my take the Governor would be impressed.

As to the funding. it should be up to those who are the supporters of the Governor. As sitting will be limited at the event and initial event entry fee amounts are banterd about is is apparent that the Select Few will be in attendance. All well and good and more power to them.

Not the common folk of the borough paying the tab please.

Ketchikan, Alaska

About: "A common copper penny taxpayer. I'm retire and living off of my savings. Not sure what I'll do that second week."

Received January 21, 2015 - Published January 26, 2015


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