Candidate for the Ketchikan
Gateway Borough Assembly - Three Year Term
September 27, 2005
Elected to the Assembly in
1995 & 2002. Served 2 years as Vice Mayor & 4 years
as Chair of Board of Equalization.
Member Operating Engineers Local 302 since 1973. I will
retire from the Union on January 1, 2006.
In business and management for 25 years. Former Terminal
& Barge Manager for White Pass Alaska, & Fixed Base Ops
Manager for Taquan Air. Current operating Owner of Ketchikan
51 Years old - grew up in Juneau - lived in Fairbanks for 15
years and have resided in Ketchikan since January 1989.
Started Ketchikan Softball Association 16 years ago and have
been its leader since then.
Ketchikan Softball District Commissioner since 1991 and State
President for 8 years.
Alaska CHARR Board - 4 years including one year as President
& 2 years as Chairman of the Board
17 year member of Elks Lodge #1429 including 3 years as a trustee
Facilities Committee leader for many years
Numerous other committees
I sat on the Parks & Rec Board for many years and helped
plan the creation of many of the opportunities that we are now
afforded. These include the Rec Center, the Pool remodel
& addition, upgrades & additions to existing
parks, trails, facilities & additional ballfields.
The Softball organization that I have headed added many further
improvements to the Weiss ballfields when it partnered with the
Borough with Money & Labor for construction of dugouts, a
bathroom/storage/concession facility, installation of lights
and grass and new bathrooms and concessions at Dudley fields.
I also helped put together the plan for a new elementary school
and remodels to Valley Park, Houghtaling & Schoenbar.
While the timeline as initially looked at went by the wayside
many years ago, the goal remained and we are now almost completed
with all of those projects. This has created first class
educational facilities for our community, which is an important
asset when people are considering relocating to the community.
I have been a long time supporter of the Shipyard that began
before I was ever elected to office when then Mayor Alaire Stanton
appointed me to sit on the Shipyard Advisory Committee.
This has culminated in a lot of hard work by a lot of people
with over $50M in the current Transportation bill to go towards
final completion of the yard.
I helped secure Federal dollars for the community for the following
projects each of the last 3 years: the Airport, water
& sewer improvements in the South Tongass area and a new
sewage ttreatment facility at Ward Cove.
I believe I have the proven
experience and leadership and it is reflected in my decision
making on behalf of all of the citizens. In 1992, 3 years
before I was elected the to the Assembly the 1st time, I began
attending the meetings. I attended over 85% of them during
the next 3 years prior to running for office. I believe
this reflects my dedication & committment to the task you
are electing me to handle on your behalf.
I have always been open and accessible to all citizens and many
will tell you I have always returned their calls and/or e-mails to
discuss the issue on their mind. ( This even included Don Huddle
over the years).
I will support the communities wishes on Consolidation but I
like it chances much better because it was brought forward by
the citizens and the board was elected by the community.
I believe there can be more efficiencies, less confusion among
the little person or the un-informed, we can speak as one unified
voice from the community and everyone will then have a say in
City matters such as docks, KPU, etc.
I have always supported economic development. My track
record has reflected this. This particular segment can
be for resource based industry, tourism, small businesses standing
alone or supporting a larger endeavor. It is the combination
of many factors including the support of government through proper
infrastructure or just staying out of the way, to help these
new endeavors survive. We will have additional dollars
in our coffers once all the money is received from the various
sales of Ward Cove properties. I remember the Blue Ribbon
committee and the KEDA board and these type of endeavors
should handle the investment dollars to keep it out of the political
circle. There are many proven examples across the country
of how to leverage this money into 10 or 20 fold or even
more. We have been given a 2nd chance and we should have
that on top of additional development in Ward Cove.
I am usually asked the question if I support full funding for
education. I have voted to fund to the cap as well as a
vote to so call "underfund". I believe this issue
must be looked at with each budget as presented and it must stand
on its merits. Education is the Biggest and Number One
function of the Borough government and cannot be taken lightly.
This last year we funded $350,000 outside the cap and according
to some "short-funded" the District by the same amount.
In reality they were given a dollar amount that equals
funding to the cap. With the possibility that their student
count numbers have increased considerably, we will probably be
well short of the potential maiximum contribution. This
does not mean that the community cannot tell us part way throught
he year to help them out with more money. Perhaps it would
be earmarked to cover the increased cost of the fuel oil.
As an Assembly member we have a responsibility to all of the
citizens and we must balance the educational needs with other
needs & desires that the community wishes. I proposed
the 1/2% sales tax increase to help fund the current bond indebtedness
for Schools and additional debt service that we were going
to take on. I also asked that this money be allowed to
help cover the cost of insurance as an in-kind service for the
District, since that cost was rising each year. You, the
voters, overwhelmingly agreed and this gave the community an
additional source of revenue to help with general fund monies
that are used to pay for Education and General government.
Without it, we would have been forced to make many more tough
It has been my privilege to have sat on the Assembly from 1995-98
and again from 2002-05 as well as serving in many varying capacities
to help better the Ketchikan area. Thank you for this and
I hope that you support me with your trust and your Vote for
proven Leadership & Experience for another 3 year term.
Please vote on October 4th
or cast your ballot absentee at the Clerk's office prior to then.
George H. Tipton
h (907) 225-6392
w (907) 225-9011
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