Against Rodney Dial
By Ghert Abbott
September 28, 2019
One of the duties of the Borough Mayor is to publically represent the interests and needs of Ketchikan to the state government. Currently, it is in the interests of Ketchikan to publically fight all further cuts to essential state services, among them the AMHS, the Pioneer Homes, the University of Alaska Southeast, and the state’s Medicaid system. Based on Rodney Dial’s prior actions and statements, I do not believe he would oppose the Dunleavy administration’s harmful austerity agenda.
Rodney Dial has publically supported Governor Mike Dunleavy’s vetoes. On June 29th he posted a letter to Sitnews calling the vetoes “necessary” for our state. This was done about a month before the Governor was forced into partial retreat due to legislative resistance and popular backlash, so Mr. Dial was expressing support for the vetoes at their most extreme, uncaring and destructive.
Furthermore, during his time on the Borough Assembly, Rodney Dial has demonstrated a willingness to misuse his position in order to score ideological points. When he disagreed with some of the Daily News’s coverage and editorials, he sent a letter threatening retaliation through the cutting off of Borough advertising. Any attempted intimidation of the press is inappropriate behavior for an elected office, regardless of their office. (See: Borough briefed on Gravina Access project: Assembly Member Rodney Dial's letter to the editor becomes topic of discussion at meeting" by Zachary Halaschak. Also Rodney Dial's letter to the editor of the Ketchikan Daily News, printed on October 13, 2017.)
Later, when the petition to recall School Board President Trevor Shaw for violation of the School Board’s bylaws was submitted for formal certification to the Borough Assembly, Rodney Dial voted to refuse certification. As the recall was valid and had collected the necessary signatures, the Borough was legally required to place it on the ballot for determination by the voters. So in voting against certification and against placing it on the ballot, Rodney Dial was voting to place the Borough in violation of state law. He did this for no other reason than his personal political belief that Mr. Shaw should not be recalled. (See: Article in the Ketchiakn Daily News, "Assembly puts recall on ballot: Voters to decide recall of School Board President Shaw on Oct. 2" by Scott Bowlen.)
For the above reasons, I will not be voting for Mr. Dial on October 1st.
Received September 26, 2019 - Published September 29, 2019
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