Caleb Berry is a senator for USUAA.
Citizens of the Municipality of Anchorage must once again decide which outstanding individual deserves the honor of serving as their mayor. There are many issues that voters must take into consideration. I believe Rebecca Logan is the superior candidate and is thus most worthy of this office, due to her position on law enforcement and fiscal matters.
In 2017, Anchorage officials reported an unfortunate total of 36 homicide victims dispersed among 32 incidents within the municipality compared a total of 34 victims in 2016. If elected mayor, Rebecca Logan stated her commitment in a press release to working alongside policymakers in Juneau to combat these sad statistics. Logan said that she believes that some stipulations under Senate Bill 91 hinder Anchorage public safety and the ability of the municipality government to deter criminal actions. Mayor Ethan Berkowitz has also expressed distaste for SB 91, but has not moved to amend it. Perhaps a new administration can better negotiate with Juneau bureaucrats to secure greater local rights for the population. Logan said she wishes to see the law changed for the better.
Logan said she specifically has deep concerns with Section 113 of SB 91, which states that a municipality “may not impose a greater punishment than that imposed for a violation of the state law. This subsection applies to home rule and general law municipalities.”
SB 91 has been in effect for two years and the result has been an increased rate of homicide and an increase in the municipality crime rate. Logan says does not want the law repealed, but simply amended to allow for Anchorage to be able to decide what an appropriate penalty for a crime should be. She said she understands that a mayor’s top priority must be to protect the people, and is committed to working alongside other stakeholders in the state to ensure that Anchorage’s criminal justice system is both fair and functional.
Logan has received the endorsement of the Alaska Republican Party in her efforts to become our next mayor. This is especially spectacular as municipal elections are nonpartisan. Logan does not officially represent the Alaska Republican Party, but they have chosen to put their faith in her anyways. They made an investment in her, much like Logan has invested in this municipality.
Logan has owned three restaurants in this city and each was very successful and sold for a profit. Logan claims that she employed more than 300 people during her tenure as a small business owner. She is a fiscal conservative and her experience as a business owner within the municipality has shaped her philosophy concerning the role of government in fostering economic well-being. When I asked Logan about the role of the municipal government in creating economic wealth, she said that only the private sector could achieve that noble goal.
“It is government’s job to provide a stable business climate that the private sector wants to participate in,” Logan said.
I believe that, regardless of your views, the honesty and transparency displayed by Logan is worthy of your respect. In politics, it has become the custom to tell people what they want to hear. It would be easy to tell people that under her administration she would bring wealth and growth and increase their paychecks, but that is not what she does. Logan said she commits to simply doing what she can to create a good city for both big Fortune 500 companies and the little guy.
It is the personal conviction of myself, and millions of other proud Republicans and conservatives, that only the private sector can generate economic growth and that government interference in the natural order of the market stunts the natural developments of ideas and enterprise. Many of us also believe that responsible civil servants understand this basic economic principle and work to make their community the easiest and best place to start and maintain a business.
On April 3, we will elect a mayor. I advise each person to vote according to their conscience; however, I sincerely hope your conscience can be persuaded in favor of Rebecca Logan. Ethan Berkowitz is a good guy, but under his administration, things have not gotten better. Crime has not decreased, the cost of living has not increased, wages, for the most part, have not increased and, to be honest, despite adding about 100 police officers to the city, we are not any safer than we were before Berkowitz took office. It is time for a change.
Opinions expressed in The Northern Light do not necessarily reflect that of the newspaper, its staff or faculty adviser(s).