Conservatives defeated in Mat-Su Assembly race - Must Read Alaska
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Saturday, December 7, 2019
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Conservatives defeated in Mat-Su Assembly race

SCHOOL BOARD, HOWEVER, MOVES RIGHT

Conservatives for Mat-Su Borough Assembly were bested by heavy union spending and Democrat Party organization during the Nov. 5 election.

With all absentee and questioned ballots counted, union-backed Tim Hale and environmentalist-consultant Stephanie Nowers took seats on the Assembly.

Of the 47,323 voters in the Mat-Su, just 6,219 voted. The election drew a 10.31 percent turnout.

Hale outspent his opponent Brian Endle 2-to-1, and his big dollars came from myriad labor unions, including the state’s biggest public employee union. Two spoilers in the race took over 150 votes from the two leaders, and even though Endle had an endorsement from the governor, he came up short.

Tim Hale, elected to the Mat-Su Borough Assembly for three years.

District 1 Assembly member Jim Sykes is term-limited and had threw his support to Hale, who will represent widespread communities that are some of the most conservative in Alaska:

  • Butte
  • Lazy Mountain
  • South Knik River
  • Farm Loop
  • South Fishhook
  • Soapstone
  • Buffalo Mine
  • Sutton
  • Chickaloon
  • Glacier View
  • Lake Louise
  • Eastern Denali Highway

District 2’s winner Stephanie Nower will represent the City of Palmer and the greater Palmer area south of the Palmer-Wasilla Highway to Hyer Road. Nowers is a sustainable energy consultant who is the former MatSu Borough editor for the Anchorage Daily News.

Stephanie Nowers, elected to the Mat-Su Borough Assembly for three years.

But it wasn’t all bad news for conservatives. They gained members on the Mat-Su Borough School Board with new members Jim Hart and Ryan Ponder. Jeff Taylor was unopposed and retained his seat.

Jim Hart, elected to Mat-Su Borough School Board for three years.
Ryan Ponder, elected to Mat-Su School Board for three years.
Jeff Taylor, incumbent on Mat-Su School Board, ran unopposed.

The Mat-Su Borough Assembly was set to meet tonight, but the election itself will not be certified until next week.

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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.

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