Anchorage's deep state: New equity officer can't be let go without OK from Assembly - Must Read Alaska
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Wednesday, October 20, 2021
HomePoliticsAnchorage’s deep state: New equity officer can’t be let go without OK from Assembly

Anchorage’s deep state: New equity officer can’t be let go without OK from Assembly

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CRITICAL RACE THEORY AT CITY HALL

The new Anchorage chief equity officer, who makes $115,000 per year, was hired in the final days of Acting Mayor Austin Quinn-Davidson’s 8-month duration at the helm of Anchorage City Hall.

This is one of the positions that could be trimmed by the new Mayor Dave Bronson, conservatives say.

After all, it’s Critical Race Theory in practice, something that conservatives find reprehensible.

Some who voted for Bronson have expected that the position had already been eliminated, since there’s already an equal opportunity officer at the city.

Clifford Armstrong, the director of equity and justice, cannot be fired or laid off, no matter how egregious his actions may be, without the express consent of the Assembly. The position cannot be left vacant, now that it has been filled.

Read: Equity officer hired out of Tacoma to run new office for mayor

That clause is written right into the ordinance. The mayor doesn’t get to decide if he is doing his job, which according to the ordinance, is to improve the lives and livelihoods of people with certain skin color, disability, and LGTBQIA+ status. 

Enabling legislation job description is downloadable here:

The “equity” term refers to “equal outcome,” as opposed to equal opportunity, which is why people who believe in hard work and merit-based rewards object to the new fad that has come from the Critical Race Theory concept.

Armstrong runs the Anchorage Office of Equity and Justice, which has been structured in the same way as the Office of Internal Audit. The auditor also can’t be fired without the approval of the Assembly.

“After the initial appointment effective immediately, the term of office for the chief equity officer shall be four years, ending on December 31, effective with appointment to the term beginning January 1, 2021,” the ordinance read. It went into effect before former Mayor Ethan Berkowitz left office after a major scandal involving a local news reporter.

“The chief equity officer may be dismissed by the mayor only for cause shown, and only with the concurrence of a majority of the assembly,” the law reads. According to the ordinance, “The office of equity and justice shall have such assistants and employees as are necessary to perform all required duties.”

There are no clear deliverables for the job, so firing the equity officer “for cause shown” is clearly an impossible task, unless the majority of the Assembly is flipped to conservative, which is unlikely in Anchorage. The next election is in April.

According to the ordinance, Clifford’s contract will remain for four years, beyond the next mayoral election. He will get to cruise for four years, collaborating with radicals who control the Assembly and passing information to the Alaska Democratic Party. All on the taxpayers’ dime.

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Suzanne Downing had careers in business and journalism before serving as the Director of Faith and Community-based Initiatives for Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and returning to Alaska to serve as speechwriter for Gov. Sean Parnell. Born on the Oregon coast, she moved to Alaska in 1969.

Latest comments

  • The neutering of Bronson begins

    • Yes, but Bronson doesn’t have to be a Dunleavy, he can bite back, and must! He can put this “equity officer” in some back room, deny funding, and let Clifford die on the vine. If Bronson doesn’t “stand tall” for Anchorage, then Anchorage- and by extension the rest of Alaska- is screwed.
      I’m not an Anchorage-ite (thank God), but were I one, I would be supporting Bronson and encouraging him to stay conservative every day.

      • I bailed on Anchorage years ago. Never looked back.

        Saying he’s no Dunleavy is setting the bar damn low. Almost on the floor. I’ve seen stoned street people in Juneau put up more of a fight than Dunleavy.

  • Nicely done! Perhaps Anchorage residents should become informed to vote the self serving reprobates out of office. Or are there too many already on the take?

  • Elections have consequences, people need to pay attention to what’s going on. If as conservatives we don’t get involved, it’s our own fault that we get stuck with this type of situation.

  • Well, what the frick does the new Mayor get to do?!! It seems like the communist assembly has way too much power! Think like a cheating leftist and find the loopholes.

  • I still find it incomprehensible, loathsome and difficult to believe that a majority of Anchorage residents actually support these Marxist sociopaths and their totalitarian agenda. How can it be possible?

    • They (we) don’t. The problem is that the majority of Anchorage residents are too lazy or complacent to do anything about it.

  • Mail in voting ensures the Marxists stay in power.
    .
    My question is, since the 14th Amendment guarantees equal protection, how can this this “equity” officer help only minorities?

  • The powers of this position should be examined. While it may not be possible to discharge him, it may be relatively easy to ignore him. Any muni executive that cooperates with him should be terminated. Typical Leftist nonsense.

  • Bullsh*t. The mayor can hire and fire anyone he wants to.

    • The previous non-elected Mayor did not hold a special election as dictated by the Muni charter. Everything she did past the date of the never held special election should be tossed out in court.

      • Bingo!

      • How far do we think that will go? Sounds reasonable so not much chance…

    • I agree.
      The Equity Officer would likely sue, but I’m sure the MOA would win in the end, since Muni Code and the State Constitution trump whatever wrangling our pantsless former mayor cooked up with his liberal Assembly cabal.

    • That’s a good point. The interim Mayor’s legitimacy was questionable. There should have been a special election. I would be happy if the person was fired. He’d have to file a suit against the Muni to regain his ill-gotten position. Defending that would be Muni money well spent.

  • Amazing, isn’t it? I liked Fairbanks in the 60s. These assembly members and their bureaucratic cohorts wouldn’t have made it there for 24 hours. Back when real life prevailed over the life you wish to have. The concept of living in concert with people that didn’t cowtow to their self imposed inadequacies never enters the mind of this oligarchy, only putting forth a narrative to consume time to extend their ability to suck up public funds.

  • Anchorage voters should start an initiative to negate that ordinance. I believe we have the power as voters to do that.

  • Give him an office in the basement and then cut the power.

    • And no computer access. No cell phone.

    • That is exactly what should be done, Anchorage voters are long overdue for corrective action against the communist assembly that is currently in place.

    • But he can keep his red stapler.

  • When seats on the Assembly do open up, hopefully we can do whatever we can to prevent having the race flooded with conservatives, which almost guarantees splitting the vote -we just did that this spring with the school board elections, and ended up with all (but one, maybe?) Communists on the school board again.

  • Write and file written protests for each Constitutional infraction and usurpation legislatively which is our court of record and justice. You know when they’ being secret like – that is YOUR process due for each of these infractions. The tear down of the web page, the excessive fine against an actual elected Mayor. The super secret stuff their doing in Juneau is your process. Why aren’t WE using it as described by Mason’s manual. Waltzing on the side of a road is placarding not speaking. A written complaint is an actual protest. You say just like in journalism who, what, where and why. AND you ask for an immediate inquiry and remedy. You can ask for it to be super secret but why. The secrecy can be a ploy and usurpation too. Turn the lights on. Transparency is a worthy goal of governance and service.

  • Just as President Obama said Change begins with the people, Change doesn’t begin with the Leaders (although it should! If the leader is following behind Christ) The people hold the power who determines which persons are lifted up and elected.

    Conservative-minded Christian community organizers have to leave their comfy homes and close out their social media tools (cause social media is a real handicap limiting your reach and how effective you can be influencing your neighbors!) and go walk the streets, go walk the scary neighborhoods, and develop relationships with your neighbors that gets them onto city councils, boards and commissions, and elected seats. Everyone knows someone near them they know who needs to hear the Gospel from them or what is happening in one another’s town, and they might be the one you need to encourage, teach, and lift them up.

    Bronson and his Administration will do their part just as Dunleavy and his Administration have been doing their part being the Emergency brake pulled up while the corruption can’t drive as fast as if the brake was put down. The Anchorage people have to do their part. You need to take responsibility for your choices and reactions. Anchorage needs to learn to own their life without being monitored by a bunch of government babysitters like an equity babysitter.

  • Give it a paper-clip counting gig in the basement, a computer that works most of the time… and nothing else.
    .
    Might be time for a challenge in court: does the Assembly have the legal right unilaterally, without voter consent, to void the separation of powers doctrine by hiring and firing executive-branch employees?
    .
    It’s bad enough that the Assembly Clerk counts the votes for Assemby members, her employers, running for Mayor….
    .
    now it looks like the Assembly wants to run the Mayor’s office too.
    .
    Mayor Bronson’s team has their work cut out for them.

    • Time for a legal challenge. How does the assembly arrogate themselves power at the expense of the Mayor’s office? Does the Anchorage Code of Ordinances allow them to do this? Swampier…

  • Winter is coming and, everyone succumbs to the slippery ice. Some survive, some do not!

  • How convenient. 4 years @ a job with no deliverables and you can’t be fired by the mayor without the concurrence of the “Assembly”. Reboot the Assemby in April 2022.

    • The fundamental nature of your observation, made with no excess baggage, is commendable.

  • I agree Jen. Others have mentioned it. Apathy is killing Anchorage.

  • If we want change we have to cut the head off the snake – ban the use of Dominion voting machines in Alaska and sharply curtail mail in voting & ballot harvesting.

  • Equity is 99.44% effort..

  • Look at the price of lumber alone, look at all the madness. Our mayor needs support he has a mess to clean up the democrats have caused it all. Oust them all Alaskans will be sold out no more. The democrats all must go Lisa must go. All the madness is from the democrats we have had enough and we all must start a new oust all the corrupt clowns immediately Alaska

  • 6 figures to collaborate with the assembly, for four years. Let that marinate in your mind for a minute.

  • I would like to read the job description for this position. Is that available?

      • Thank you!

      • That’s BS we the people demand this to be done…fire this person now!!!! Screw what the assembly wants, it utterly ridiculous we pay for this nonsense

  • I do not consent to this job description. It is not a consented authorization of delegation. It confers new powers to individuals interested in the community who do not reside here but in california. This is inappropriate. We the people of Anchorage are leading and consenting to government of us, for us, and by us. We in Anchorage had NOTHING to do with planting this bush. Remove it from the municipal organization chart immediately please.

  • You start using the ‘C’ word: Communists. Redistribution of wealth? Equal outcomes? Racial justice? Abolishment of private property rights? Health mandates that destroy businesses? What else is it if not Communism / Marxism / Socialism? This is an all-out ideological battle for the soul of this town, state and country. You do not ‘work’ with Communists or find common ground with them. You ALERT THE PEOPLE TO THE TRUE DANGER THEY ARE IN BY SPEAKING THE TRUTH IN PUBLIC LOUDLY AND BOLDLY IF YOU ARE EN ELECTED OFFICIAL. And let the chips fall where they may. If the people still don’t care then that is truly their fault. Then move onto to safe refuge from these people. It is time for wartime conservatives in politics. It is time to fight fire while is still time to do so.

  • Critical Race Theory. Race Theory. Social Justice.
    .
    Can anyone clearly explain the difference between these terms in ten words or less?

  • Wow, and I thought my hometown Juneau was a tyrannical communist cesspool. It appears we barely stand in the shadow of Anchorage regarding that status.

    • Wayne Douglas Coogan, my thoughts exactly, especially in regards to moving the Capital. If the good people of Alaska ever decide to take away the disease that is Government from Juneau, I hope it will be far far away from the rat infested politics found in Anchorage.

    • Juneau is a company town, and the company is government. Consequently, Juneau’s citizenry is much more aware of government structures and processes than the Anchorage citizenry. While Downtown Juneau and Douglas are essentially foreign countries, I always feared somebody stopping me and demanding papers whenever I went to Douglass, the actual government of Juneau is a lot more methodical and restrained than the Anchorage government. Whenever the Left has a majority of the Anchorage government, there isn’t really much organized opposition to their carrying out any flight of fancy they might have.

      • Art, to your point, many state capitals are “company towns” inasmuch as state government becomes an overbearing presence therein. Conversely, other areas do not suffer the same level of overbearance from their local governments, Interestingly, most state capitals are not significant socio-economic hubs within their given states. Consider Olympia, Salem, Albany, Cheyenne, etc. The main reason for this would be the average state has more going on than its own government to preoccupy its citizens. Alaska, on the other hand, is so government-centric that everyone fixates upon every action or inaction of our state government. Its rather pathetic really.

  • No deliverables and $115K/year – That is a job worthy of “Seinfeld” character George Costanza. He’s the guy that always pretended to work but never really did.

    After Mr. Armstrong’s four-year contact expires, I might apply for the position. I will even do it for less money, and certainly without the inherent racism that the position proscribes because I believe in equal opportunity and equal protection under the law.

  • I wonder how many older Alaskan Native women were turned down for even an interview. What an opportunity was not ever available at all from inception to all the Anchorage minority applicants. I’m just sizzling over this. Call the EEO office in Seattle. The perps of this blatant hiring racism are the assembly members!

  • Who’s OK do we need to let go members of the Assembly? 😉 Recent misguide court ruling seems to make recalling the Assembly easy as pie Sign me up Scotty!

  • I believe the main interest is assets. The three letter agencies “have it all.” If the Anchorage Assembly is a captured operation, face it. We are evidently in some kind of foreign agenda. Probably between those who believe the republic is still standing and those who are in favor of oligarch rule, Alaska has purposefully been weakened. Others in the lower 48 have alluded to it with a gasp but they won’t be straightforward about it. Someone wants the resources I guess. Sad.

  • We don’t need Equity! Equality is the basis of the USA Constitution.
    Equity is a Marxist term that means everyone is the same. We are not. We are a Country of Individuals!
    We plan to fight for our Freedoms. The Assembly needs to be reassembled. Vote!

  • I object to this public service to democrat assembly members. They do not need help. They are the help. If they do not wish to help they should really consider living without the generous stipend and quit with honor.

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