Dunbar, Rivera should get their own hotel to run - Must Read Alaska
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Friday, May 14, 2021
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Dunbar, Rivera should get their own hotel to run

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After getting an earful from hotel industry workers, the Anchorage Assembly postponed consideration of a measure offered earlier by Chairman Felix Rivera and member Forrest Dunbar to mandate “large” hotels must offer to rehire workers laid off because of COVID-19 or retain them after changes in ownership.

The workers made it clear they thought the ordinance was unnecessary. The vote was 9-2 to indefinitely table the likely unconstitutional proposal, with Rivera and Dunbar the only two hoping against hope to move it forward.

Their proposed ordinance, AO 2020-84(S), would have provided “protection for hotel workers’ employment by amending Anchorage Municipal Code with a new chapter requiring large hotel employers to offer rehire to employees laid off in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic, and to retain eligible workers for a period of time after a change in ownership or control, and thereafter consider offering them continued employment….”

We are unsure why the ordinance, an intrusive solution to a nonexistent problem, was offered to begin with, and we are not alone. Assemblyman John Weddleton, after listening to hotel workers disparage the ordinance, wondered aloud: “Why are we doing this?”

Our question remains: Where is it written that government gets to tell employers large or small what they will and will not do when it comes to employment? Happily, nine Assembly members got it right and kept the city out of the hotel business – at least for now.

As we suggested earlier, if Rivera and Dunbar want to stick their noses into the whozits, whatzits and howzits of hotel hiring and firing they should buy their own hotel and have a field day.

But leave the city out of it.

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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 real story is why has the Anchorage Daily News has been silent about this subject? There are so many facets about proposed AO 2020-84(S) that are intrusive and illegal yet the ADN is silent. Is the ADN that beholding to labor unions and liberal politics?

  • But they are buying a hotel…. with the same cares act funds that were intended to help struggling businesses like hotels retain staff through the pandemic ?‍♀️

    So much irony it should be an Alanis Morissette song.

  • Very often, liberals must first create a problem before they can “fix” it.

  • Was that photo taken during a “Gay Pride” rally?

    • Maybe Dunbar and Riviera should just get a room.

      • That would be cruel and unusual punishment for the hotel staff….

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