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Viewpoints: Letters / Opinions

Treadwell for Governor

By John E. Nelson


August 03, 2018
Friday PM

I am writing in support of Republican Mead Treadwell for Governor. As a former ferry system engineer, and Port Engineer for the Alaska Marine Highway System, one compelling reason I have for supporting Mead Treadwell is his steadfast conviction to ensure that the state has a ferry system that works. Support industries like the shipyard and vendors who assist in the maintenance and repair of the vessels are to be encouraged for their value added role both in Ketchikan and for the rest of the state. The ferry system as a whole operates for the benefit of all Alaskans, and fulfills a vital role as one of many important modes of transportation connecting southeastern and southcentral communities. This commitment is secured under a Treadwell Administration.

During the winter of 2016-17 the State operating budget was debated, Treadwell’s opponent Mike Dunleavy had a key role. He ultimately opted to stifle the budgetary process from occurring even after many cuts to schools, healthcare, and state university system had been made. He proudly boasts this as a selling point for his campaign. This unfortunate situation set in motion a chain reaction of several conflating problems. 

First, Alaska received one of two financial downgrades by Moody’s and one by Fitch in the immediate aftermath. These ratings become critical when the state has to borrow money for various capital improvement projects all throughout the state. Next was Mike’s unceremonious expulsion from his positions of influence in the State Senate, which shortly thereafter became the real cause of quitting his post as a State Senator altogether. However, these unforced errors became far worse due to his lack of prudence in this budgetary matter. The state government endured a shutdown due in large measure from his political grandstanding prior to announcing his run for Governor early this year. This set the stage for the Walker PFD takeaway, and Dunleavy’s lead up role can not be ignored. 

Among many other damaging positions that Dunleavy took, he has suggested that he wants much deeper cuts to all state departments with the lone exception of the Department of Natural Resources. This will effect southeastern Alaskans, and almost assuredly reduce ferry system operations beyond what Walker did, and other associated industries with have downstream impacts. He also stated publicly his support for moving the state capital to the Anchorage area.

Mike Dunleavy as a state senator proposed a statewide 12.5% commercial fisheries tax. At present he has a mega donor, Bob Penney, who is best known for proposing two ballot measures that went to the Alaska Supreme Court that sought to shut down all commercial fishing in the Cook Inlet. Penney’s proposal also had implications for the Kodiak fishery as well. He has subsequently gone on to suggest suing in Federal Court under the Endangered Species Act to get these bans in place, which enriches his own self-serving sport fishing business on the Kenai Peninsula. The problem here is that if Dunleavy gets the Republican nomination, this policy in the Cook Inlet is almost certain to get implemented. By doing so, it will set the precedent of commercial fisheries elsewhere like Southeast to also be threatened with closure based upon its own regional issues.

It is time to elect a true conservative Republican Governor who is not beholden to special interest causes. Treadwell is committed to encouraging new value added businesses in the state. As a businessman of 40 years he has all the tools necessary to expand these commercial opportunities and commitments all across the state. 

Treadwell supports maintaining a balance between sports fishing and commercial fishing. For those who vote Republican I’d recommend him, and give him my endorsement. Please vote for Mead Treadwell for Alaska’s Governor.

John E. Nelson
Anchorage, Alaska



Editor's Note:

The text of this letter was NOT edited by the SitNews Editor.


Received August 01, 2018 - Published August 03, 2018

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