Anchorage Assembly leaders Chair Suzanne LaFrance and Vice Chair Christopher Constant issued a statement regarding the letter the Anchorage Assembly received from the legal representatives of former Municipal Manager Amy Demboski, who has made a wrongful termination allegation against Mayor Dave Bronson. It’s unclear why Demboski’s attorney, Scott Kendall, sent the grievance letter against the mayor to the entire Assembly, but it appears he intends to inflict maximum damage on the Republican mayor of Anchorage.
Last year, the Assembly leaders did get involved and ended up in court with the mayor when the mayor fired the former mayor’s chief equity officer — a move they said was illegal. But this year, they indicate they may have limited abilities, although they apparently plan to get involved in some way in further controlling the executive branch. The letter reads:
“Yesterday afternoon, we received a letter from Cashion Gilmore & Lindemuth, the attorneys representing former Municipal Manager Amy Demboski in her wrongful termination claim against Mayor Bronson.
“The allegations in the letter are extremely shocking and outline a level of mismanagement of municipal resources that we have not seen in our tenure on the Assembly. Because the allegations are so extreme, we are still processing all that we have read and determining what action the Assembly can take to safeguard the municipality’s employees, finances and reputation.
“While many of the allegations fall outside of the Assembly’s jurisdiction, we do have the power and responsibility to steward municipal finances. As a result of the allegations that surfaced on this issue last month, the Assembly has added new controls on our process for approving the administration’s contracts and we are also reviewing additional measures to strengthen and expand the municipal audit process. We will do everything that is within the Assembly’s powers to safeguard the municipality’s finances and protect the interests of residents.
“However, the Assembly can only do so much regarding matters of workplace violations and executive misconduct, and so we hope that the proper employment and financial regulatory agencies conduct their own thorough investigations so that the people of Anchorage are able to understand what is happening within the leadership of their city.
“The people of Anchorage have a right to know if their city is being run legally and responsibly. Therefore, we call on Mayor Bronson to respond to these allegations right away.
“Additionally, while personnel matters are outside of the Assembly’s jurisdiction, we want to remind all Municipal employees of the resources that are in place if any municipal employee is aware of further improprieties that warrant investigation. Employees can reach out to the Municipal Ombudsman’s Office (907-343-4461 or [email protected]) to learn about their options, including filing with the Municipality of Anchorage Labor Relations, the Municipality of Anchorage Office of Equal Opportunity, the Anchorage Equal Rights Commission, the Alaska State Commission for Human Rights, and the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.”