Everything on Tuesday’s ballot for Mat-Su voters

Election results will be certified at a special assembly meeting on Nov. 22
Two assembly and five school board seats are up for grabs in the Matanuska-Susitna Borough on the Nov. 8 ballot.
Published: Nov. 7, 2022 at 5:58 PM AKST
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PALMER, Alaska (KTUU) - In the Matanuska-Susitna Borough, two assembly seats and five Mat-Su Borough School District School Board seats are up for grabs on the Nov. 8 ballot.

Assembly District 1

Current assembly member Tim Hale is seeking another term representing District 1. The lifelong Alaskan has served on the assembly for the last three years, and has worked to reduce the mill rate, funded the future of the Joneseville Shooting Range, and protected the Second Amendment.

Brian Endle is running against Hale, who said he believes in less government, lower taxes, election integrity, and replacing voting machines.

Assembly District 2

Incumbent Stephanie Nowers is also trying to keep her seat in District 2. Nowers is a fiscal conservative who has worked to lower property tax rates, believes in valley growth, and is a business owner.

Dana Raffaniello believes less government is best but acknowledges the need to provide roads, schools, community safety, and protecting Constitutional rights.

Meghan Trupp is a lifelong Alaskan who graduated from Colony High School. She believes the support of small and local businesses is critical to the success of the borough.

School Board District 2

Kendal Kruse is running for the school board seat left open by current member Jim Hart. Kruse believes excellence in education requires focusing on core subject knowledge by removing certain content. She aims to restore trust between parents and the school district through transparency and fiscal responsibility.

Candidate Ray Michaelson is running on the platform that valley students deserve safe learning environments and highly qualified teachers. Michaelson has previously served on the school board where he worked on policy review as well as the promotion of extra-curricular activities and academic standards.

School Board District 3

Kathryn McCollum is the sole candidate for school board District 3. The retired Mat-Su teacher believes in using taxpayer dollars towards education, supporting quality teachers, and building policies that best serve families.

School Board District 5

With current school board president Ryan Ponder’s term coming to an end, three candidates have put their names in the hat to fill the seat of District 5.

Shirley Akelkok is a lifelong Alaskan who started her career in teaching after graduating from the University of Alaska Fairbanks. Akelkok’s candidacy comes with experience serving on MSBSD’s Indian Education Committee and Equity Task Force.

Jacob Butcher brings to the table his belief in enhanced school safety, raising educational standards, fiscal responsibility, as well as transparency. Butcher has over 20 years of experience working in public safety.

Also running for Distirct 5 is Kimmie Elrod. Elrod is a nine-year resident of Alaska who believes in providing safe environments for children that are free of political agendas. She has three children and has experience advocating for families within the military and outside communities.

School Board District 6

Ole Larson is the sole candidate for District 6 and currently serving as a member of District 3. Larson believes in including parents or guardians in the decision-making process of education, safe schools, and building maintenance. Larson has 47 years of Alaska residency.

School Board District 7

Seeking to fill the seat left open by current member Jeff Taylor, Christiana Sitbon is running for District 7. Sitbon aims to address staffing shortages and bussing challenges through change, calling it a pivotal time for Mat-Su Borough schools.

Running against Sitbon is Theodore “Ted” Swanson. The 25-year Alaskan resident attended schools in both Wasilla and Palmer and wants to work alongside other board members to prepare students for success.

Proposition No. 1

A proposition will also be set before valley voters on Tuesday. If adopted, MSB 01.10.300 would require any future ordinance regulating the discharge of firearms outside city limits must be ratified by voters before it could take effect.