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

Seward led meeting to its conclusion


January 12, 2017

I have the audio of the borough manager’s evaluation on a thumb

drive. You can call to borrow it. I’ve listened three times, a really tough

meeting for everyone. I have to agree with another’s characterization

that life rings were thrown, not axes. You can hear and feel people’s

pain. You can feel the life rings in the questions asked; surely executive

session offered a life ring or two also. Bill Seward never grabbed one

wholeheartedly. His responses weren’t solid enough to assure the

assembly that he got their critiques, that he had a good sense of what he

would do differently. Had he answered otherwise, I’m sure the motion to

give him more time would have succeeded. Maybe he was too stunned.

I had high hopes. At his first assembly meeting, I asked him to bridge

the factions. No bridge. He sided with power players; maybe he had no

choice about that. Being fired brings up vulnerabilities. He wants to

blame the borough. Maybe he’s looking inside himself now. He could

be saying, “Thanks very much for bringing us back to Alaska,” or

could be saying, “Let’s see what else we have to offer Haines.” Though

certainly not consciously, I feel Bill led this meeting to its conclusion:

a combination of uninspiring responses with a medium performance

rating. Will he behave responsibly about the whole of all of that? Will

he find advantages and disadvantages in these events? Things will

settle. The Sewards will find their niche in Haines.

Evelyna Vignola


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