At the first hearing regarding Ballot Measure 2 last Monday in Soldotna, I got to hear first hand from those opposed to the Coastal Management Initiative.
They are corporate, organized and very well-funded. Their goal is to silence the voice of coastal residents, and their talking points are all over the place. You will hear that Ballot Measure 2 is “too vague,” “another layer of bureaucracy,” “too broad of scope,” and from the least informed, “a job killer.”
Fear is their message, and the goal is to silence those of us who live on the coast and insist on responsible development. But, hey, corporations are people, too.
I know it’s summer in Alaska and we all have way too much to do, but I am asking for a bit of your time this week. It has been a privilege to serve the District 35 Democrats for the last four years and now it is time for new leadership and energy to take charge of the new District 30 Democrats. Four officers will be stepping down.
The State of Alaska has created new House Districts and the new District 30 includes all communities from Homer to Kasilof, plus Seldovia, Halibut Cove and parts of Soldotna. New voter registration cards will be mailed out in July. On the horizon are the primary election on Aug. 28 and the general election on Nov. 6.
But, before that, Democrats in the district must nominate and elect new officers for District 30 Democrats for a two-year term to support local and national Democratic candidates. The current chair, vice-chair, secretary and both committee persons will not be running for their positions for various personal reasons, so it is time for new blood to step up to the plate and move the district forward. So, all Democrats, please consider nominating yourself or someone you know to any of these positions.
Go to www.district30democrats.org and follow the links to register for the event, submit a nomination, or organize a meeting in your community. While there, check the new district boundaries.
The District 30 Democrats Member meeting to elect the new officers will be 6 p.m., July 12 at the Kachemak Community Center, 59906 Bear Creek Drive, Kachemak City.
At this meeting, open to registered Democrats only, additional nominations will be accepted and elections will be held for all positions.
District 30 Democrats chair
I’m surprised that the Homer Police Department became involved with the attempted arrest of Larry Volz for allegedly operating an unlicensed radio station.
I’m pretty sure there is no Homer ordinance against such an activity, probably not even a state law. Why would the Homer Police do the bidding of the Federal Communications Commission? If the FCC wants Larry Volz, the FCC can come and arrest him. We all recall the last fiasco when our local police attempted to arrest someone wanted on federal charges. The resulting shootout at the Homer airport ended in one death, and significantly altered the life of a young boy. It could have been worse, had any of the many innocent bystanders been hit.
The Federal Marshall service paid $3.5 million for that action and the City of Homer may have to pay as well. You’d think our local police would learn to be leery of getting involved in enforcing federal laws, especially when no local laws have been violated.
I was also surprised to read that Mr. Volz “is described as a strict constitutionalist who may be affiliated with anti-government sentiments.” A good share of Alaskans are constitutionalists not thrilled with the government. Who described Mr. Volz that way? Is adherence to our constitution a crime? Is dissatisfaction with the government a crime? What about our free speech rights?
Recently, I asked Homer Police Chief Mark Robl if the federal government ties strings to federal grant money, thus influencing our local police department. Chief Robl denied this was the case. I ask again, why did the Homer Police get involved in this incident?
During the Memorial Day weekend the Homer Elks Lodge hosted three Wounded Warriors who are stationed with the Transitional Care Battalion at Fort Wainwright. Each of these troops has served in one or both of the Iraq and Afghanistan theaters and has suffered some type of combat injury.
The hosted troops were Sgt. George Hoover, SPC John Girouard and SPC Jose Lozoyahernandez.
While in Homer, these deserving troops were treated to a day of halibut fishing, took in some of the local sights and color and were guests of honor at our Elks Memorial Day community barbecue. The troops even assisted with the pig roasting ritual which they found to be a real treat.
This is the fifth group of Wounded Warriors that the Homer Elks Lodge has hosted over the past several years and it takes effort, coordination and support to make events like this happen for our deserving service members. Our thanks to each of the following individuals and businesses for their continued support of this program.
• Alaska State Elks Association Wounded Veteran’s Project provided funds for roundtrip air travel for the troops;
• ERA Aviation provided discounted airfare.
• Ocean Shores Motel, owned by member Mike Warburton, donated hotel rooms during their stay.
• Chuck Collins and the Irish Mist donated the halibut fishing trip.
And, of course, our thanks to our numerous Elk and Emblem members who made the warriors feel welcome, well-fed and attended to their every need while they were in our care. All reports indicate they all had a great time and were very hesitant to leave.
We fully intend to continue to sponsor additional groups throughout the year for outdoor activities. If you would like to be a part of our next Wounded Warrior event, or have an idea for an event or activity, please let me know. I can be contacted by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I would like to thank the American Red Cross for their monetary assistance while I was displaced from my home at the Landings Condos during the recent fire. I appreciate the direct help from Trisha Davis, who coordinated the assistance, and Beluga Lake Lodge for their wonderful place to stay.
I am grateful for the help of the Homer Volunteer Fire Department and Homer Police Department. I am lucky to have had little damage to my condominium, and much of that credit goes to both of these city entities. I know that I was one of the first to be rescued and I appreciate all their concern.
To my Pastor Gary Syth and the congregation at Faith Lutheran Church, I also wish to say thank you. To my friends Mary, Peggy and Jack, I received more emotional help from you than you can imagine. For the drinking water placed on my porch, thank you. And a special thanks for the coordination and information provided by Christy Mershon of the Condo Association on behalf of all the tenants.
This was a tragedy and I have come to appreciate the importance of having a safe home. My prayers are for the neighbors who are still struggling.
This is to send a big thank you to Homer Foundation, from the MAPP work group on addressing substance abuse and domestic violence. Through the Homer Foundation’s generosity in providing travel funds, we have been able to add an Alaska cultural component to an evidence-based “integrated assessment tool,” a strategy identified by our work group to address these priority issues identified in our 2009 health assessment.
With these funds, Homer Foundation created the opportunity for me to travel with Linda Chamberlain, director of the Alaska Family Violence Project and Bonnie Betley of Homer Public Health, to visit Port Graham, Nanwalek, Ninilchik and Nikolaevsk for interviewing residents to incorporate their input regarding word choices. The tool will foster improved interviewing skills and increased regional awareness of vital issues such as depression, domestic violence and substance abuse.
Thank you for supporting our local collaboration for improved cultural literacy and risk reduction in our communities.
Sharon Whytal, RN
MAPP of the Southern Kenai Peninsula
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