JUNEAU – On Wednesday, Senator Donny Olson (D-Golovin) sent a letter to Governor Dunleavy offering to pay for the space at Old St. Joe’s in Nome so the Governor could hold a public town hall without private special interest funding and restrictions on Alaskans who attend.
Following Sen. Olson’s lead, Senators Bill Wielechowski (D-Anchorage), Tom Begich (D-Anchorage), Elvi Gray-Jackson (D-Anchorage), Scott Kawasaki (D-Fairbanks), and Jesse Kiehl (D-Juneau) have also offered alternative locations for Governor Dunleavy to hold public town halls in their respective communities. This is an opportunity for Governor Dunleavy to cancel his private town halls, hear from the public without limitations, and restore trust that he is truly governing on behalf of Alaskans, not the special interests of Kansas billionaires.
“Governor Dunleavy’s budget impacts every single Alaskan in this state, and it is only appropriate to provide the public an open and transparent opportunity to voice their concerns directly to the Governor without fear of being thrown out,” said Sen. Wielechowski.
“Leadership means accountability. My constituents haven’t had a chance to talk face-to-face with Governor Dunleavy since he suggested sinking coastal Alaska’s highway, slashing schools, and cutting off seniors,” said Sen. Kiehl. “It’s time for the governor to show up and talk with Southeast Alaskans.”
“Last month I was back in Fairbanks and held a public town hall. I appreciated the stories from the community on how these devastating cuts to education, health care, the pioneer homes, and other vital state services will impact them,” said Sen. Kawasaki. “I encourage Governor Dunleavy to cancel and set aside the propaganda from Americans for Prosperity, come to Fairbanks and hold an open town hall for the public so he can hear those stories directly.”
“Last month, I received a letter from a constituent expressing fear his wife will get kicked out of the pioneer home because they cannot afford the outrageous rate hikes the Governor is proposing. She is over 80 years old and in the late stages of Alzheimer’s,” said Sen. Gray-Jackson. “These are the personal stories that Governor Dunleavy needs to hear directly and in public so he can understand the impacts of his budget cuts.”
The Alaska Senate Democrats offered the following prospective locations:
* Anchorage, AK – Tuesday, March 26, UAA Wendy Williamson Theatre
* Fairbanks, AK – Thursday, March 28, West Valley High School, Performing Arts Center
* Juneau, AK – Centennial Hall, Governor’s date of choice between April 1 through April 4.
Senate Democrats eagerly await Governor Dunleavy’s response.