To the editor: Fairbanks needs a new mayor. Thankfully, the perfect person just stepped up to fill that position. I’m excited and heartened that Kathryn Dodge is running for mayor in October.
Fairbanks needs a new mayor. A mayor who puts its constituents first yet also realizes that Fairbanks really is the Golden Heart (and hub) of the Interior. Fairbanks serves (and affects) everyone in the Interior, particularly borough residents. We spend money, work, go to school, play sports and get medical attention in Fairbanks. We depend on Fairbanks, and Fairbanks depends on us. Mayor Jim Matherly doesn’t get it.
In a News-Miner article (March 1) concerning his veto of Ordinance 6093, which would have extended anti-discrimination protections to our Fairbanks LGBTQ neighbors, Matherly stated, “While I value the opinion of our neighbors in the surrounding communities and visitors from farther out, I want the citizens of Fairbanks to chart their own course and decide how we move forward as a city.” Dodge, on the other hand, realizes that we are all in this together and it takes all of us to make Fairbanks a better and safer place. We rise or fall together. She gets it.
Fairbanks needs a new mayor. A mayor that does not, after long and often hurtful debate, override the wishes of constituents, business leaders, the Diversity Council and the City Council to veto an ordinance. What lone decisions will he make next? City Council members are voted into office by you to collectively govern. Fairbanks needs a mayor who respects that. Dodge said that she “would have let the council decision stand.” She gets it.
Over the past two years, I have gotten to know the current mayor. If I had a vote this October, it would be for Kathryn Dodge. If you want a mayor with good policies, good priorities and good principles, vote Dodge. If you want a committed public servant instead of a career politician (Gov. Matherly anyone?), vote Dodge. If you want a leader who is more interested in fixing potholes than pandering to potential donor groups, vote Dodge.