Re-elect Mayor Dial
By Riley Gass
September 30, 2022
I considered writing a letter in of support of Mayor Rodney Dial's re-election effort in the upcoming election, but after some thought decided it would be best not to weigh in due to my sitting on the Ketchikan City Council. However, after seeing multiple other elected officials submit their opinions on various candidates and issues on the ballot, including a fellow City Councilman writing a letter directly smearing and making personal attacks on Mayor Dial, I changed my mind.
About six years ago I began paying close attention to and having a strong interest in our local politics. I was born and raised in Ketchikan, love it here, donâ€™t ever plan on leaving, and plan to raise a family here. I realized the importance of getting involved with things that matter and having a clear understanding of the issues our communitty faces. This is about the time Rodney Dial was elected to the Borough Assembly, after retiring from a career of service to our communitty and state as an Alaska State Trooper.
I believe the role of government at any level should be very simple and limited. To provide essential services to the citizens such as safety (law enforcement, fire, EMS), education, roads, and utility service. Perhaps most importantly it is the job of the government to not infringe on our God given rights, outlined in the United States Constitution, to not tax the citizens without proper representation, and to ensure equal opportunity for all. In Ketchikan we have a strong government presence with Federal government (Coast Guard, Federal law Enforcement officers ect.) State government, the Borough, the City of Ketchikan, the City of Saxman, and Ketchikan Indian Communitty to name some. All of these agencies have important jobs to do and have the goal of making our communitty safer and all around better, but that sure is a lot of government, and a lot of taxes. While I have noticed many times people in elected office tend to get carried away with their ideas of what government should be doing (usually more government with more taxes, fees, regulations, ect.) I have admired watching Rodney take a different approach. From my observations, Rodney has done a fantastic job of limiting government over reach in our communitty, while going the extra mile to successfully fight off federal over reach on issues like the regulations that were supposed to go into effect forcing many Ketchikan home owners to buy additional flood insurance that would have cost our citizens millions. After multiple trips to Washington DC and Juneau, and countless hours of reaching out to the Feds, Rodney got this pushed back. He has also been instrumental in securing high paying jobs and infrastructure such as the new NOAA facility, the addition of the new Coast Guard Vessel being stationed in Ketchikan, and keeping state jobs here that were set to be transferred to Anchorage. He has been able to accomplish these things working far beyond the required ceremonial role of Mayor and, as he says, treating it as a full time job, networking with the State and Feds on the Boroughs behalf.
Rodney has lead a life of service over self, from serving in the military to defend our Nation, serving in the Alaska State Troopers to protect our State, and most recently serving as Borough Assemblyman and Mayor, serving our Borough. I appreciate that he stands strong for what he believes is right, especially when it comes to spending tax payer dollars, but he does not attack people personally who he disagrees with. He works off of the facts and common sense and does not engage in smearing. Recently some have accused him of this for pointing out what seems to be a clear conflict of interest with his opponents job and the duties that are required of the mayor once elected, over seeing meetings that involve school district budgets and funding. However, if you read his statements and listen to his commentary, there is no smearing, personal attacks, or slandering, instead he respectfully points out his concerns as well as an opinion from a private law firm. I appreciate the hard work Mayor Dial has done for Ketchikan and fully support hiring him for three more years.
Riley Gass, proud life long resident of Ketchikan
Received September 29, 2022 - Published September 30, 2022
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