I am having a difficult time deciding who to vote for among the candidates for mayor. These are some of the things they should be concerned about.
Out of the three largest cities in Alaska, why is Juneau by far the most expensive to live in? Could it be that a road to the Lower 48 makes a difference in freight charges?
For the past five years, Juneau’s population and school enrollment figures have been on the decline. Could it be that $12-15 an hour seasonal jobs are starting to catch up to Juneau? If a family can no longer make a living here, they must leave.
If one drives from Juneau to the Mendenhall Valley, you pass a very large building standing vacant. It was left behind by a rental business that could no longer make it here. If you continue to the shopping malls in the Valley, you will find them half-vacant also. Could it be there is less money being spent, but the cost of running a business here in Juneau has risen?
The Juneau economy should be at the top of the mayor’s list, not building more things we must then pay to operate. A young family with children cannot move here or remain here without a good-paying job. The sooner they figure this out, the better off we will be.
Having a mayor and Assembly that are drunk on 5 percent sales tax money generated by tourists and then spending the money on things that are not needed, such as bronze whales, swimming holes, libraries, skating rinks and soon a new Juneau Arts and Culture Center, if they get their way. None of these things are on the tax roles, and all take tax dollars to operate.
I hope that the people of Juneau wake up to the fact that a good-paying job will attract and retain people here, not nice things to have.