Copies of the U.S. Constitution as well as “I voted” stickers are available to voters during the Municipal Election at AEL&P on Tuesday, Oct. 2, 2018. Lt. Gov. Kevin Meyer announced the state’s August 2020 primary would be conducted in the traditional manner and pointed to the state’s already available alternative voting options in response to COVID-19 health concerns. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire File)

Copies of the U.S. Constitution as well as “I voted” stickers are available to voters during the Municipal Election at AEL&P on Tuesday, Oct. 2, 2018. Lt. Gov. Kevin Meyer announced the state’s August 2020 primary would be conducted in the traditional manner and pointed to the state’s already available alternative voting options in response to COVID-19 health concerns. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire File)

New candidates, new charter? This year’s municipal election begins to take shape

The chance to renew the town charter is on this year’s ballot.

Candidate filing began Friday for Juneau’s municipal election in October, and it will end at 4:30 p.m Monday, July 27, according to the City and Borough of Juneau.

October’s election will cover Assembly and Juneau School District Board of Education seats and any propositions that may be before the voters. Three Assembly members have terms ending this year, as do two school board members.

The only proposition currently before the voters is the decennial vote on the establishment of a town charter, according to City Clerk Beth McEwen.

According to the city’s charter: “Every 10 years subsequent to 1970 the clerk shall place on the ballot for the next regular election the question: ‘Shall there be a Charter Commission to review or amend the Charter?’”

If voters approve a commission, the charter says “nine qualified voters” will serve as the commission, to be chosen at the next regular or special election. Amendments must be passed by a majority of voters.

McEwen noted however the Assembly will discuss a proposed bond package worth $15 million for infrastructure projects at a special meeting Monday night. Any bond proposals would have to be passed by a vote of the people, McEwen said.

[City proposes $15 million bond package to stimulate economy]

Deputy Mayor Maria Gladziszewski and Assembly members Alicia Hughes-Skandijs and Rob Edwardson all have terms ending this year. Edwardson told the Empire Friday he wasn’t running for re-election, leaving his District 2 seat, covering the Mendenhall Valley, up for grabs.

By Friday afternoon according to the city’s website listing certified candidates, Gladziszewski had filed for re-election in her Areawide seat and Kenny Soloman Gross had filed for the District 1 seat covering downtown and Douglas, currently occupied by Hughes-Skandijs. Gross’s family owns the Gross Alaska Theater in downtown Juneau.

School Board President Brian Holst also filed Friday but Jeff Short, chair of the board’s policy committee hadn’t yet.

Because of concerns about congregate gatherings during the coronavirus pandemic, the Assembly voted in May to hold the Oct 6. election by mail.

Filings must be made in person, McEwen said, and certain documents must be notarized. Staff at Juneau City Hall are able to provide notary services at no cost, McEwen said. Required documents can be found at the city’s website.

• Contact reporter Peter Segall at psegall@juneauempire.com. Follow him on Twitter at @SegallJnoEmpire.

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