Chilkat Valley News - Serving Haines and Klukwan, Alaska since 1966


Election lineup finalized; Smith and Hess vie for seat, again


August 4, 2011

The filing period for the Haines Borough’s October municipal election closed Friday, with contested races for Mayor and the Haines Borough Assembly, but a shortage of school board candidates.

The race for assembly seat "E" is a rematch of sorts, pitting Karen Hess against Norm Smith.

Greg Goodman replaced Smith on the assembly last October, after defeating write-in candidate Hess. Goodman vacated the seat in May following a Juneau Superior Court ruling that he did not meet borough residency requirements.

Hess and Smith both applied for an interim appointment, and the assembly’s attempts to reach the required four votes to fill the vacant seat until October resulted in gridlock and the decision to set a special election, instead.

Assemblymen Jerry Lapp and Scott Rossman backed Hess, while Daymond Hoffman, Steve Vick and Joanne Waterman preferred Smith.

Also set for the ballot in October, Stephanie Scott and incumbent Mayor Jan Hill are in a race that previously included John Brower. The filing period opened July 11.

"(Brower) officially withdrew from the Mayor race, but then circulated new paperwork to file for an assembly seat," said borough clerk Julie Cozzi.

Brower will challenge Lapp for seat "F."

The other assembly incumbent, Rossman, did not file for re-election to seat "C." Jerry Erny and Debra Schnabel will vie for the seat.

Two school board incumbents, Brian Clay and Anne Marie Palmieri, will run unopposed on the ballot, for seats "C" and "G," respectively. No candidates filed for seat "F," currently filled by Stacie Turner.

The municipal election is Tuesday, Oct. 4. Terms will run through October 2014, except for the two-year stint in assembly seat "E," to complete Goodman’s term.