FAIRBANKS, Alaska (KTVF) Two candidates are running for Fairbanks City Council Seat C this year, incumbent Valerie Therrien and challenger Charles Foster III. The candidates describe themselves as ‘very different’. Therrien says she wants to continue the work she has been doing in the community for years now, while Foster says it is his dissatisfaction with government that inspired him.
Two candidates are running for Fairbanks City Council Seat C this year, incumbent Valerie Therrien (left) and challenger Charles Foster III (right). The candidates describe themselves as ‘very different’. (Andrew Hawkins/KTVF)
"To see our current leaders, especially at the federal level, make allegations, has deeply upset me," began Foster. "People are making very uninformed answers and decisions based off emotion rather than logic. It has prompted me, a rather introverted person that would rather be spending the evening playing World of Warcraft or some other video game on the Nintendo Switch, or something like that, to the point where you have to do something. This is why I'm here, because people who aren't exactly proficient in speaking or out in the light really need to step it up and participate in government and make it the government you want it to be."
Therrien says her time on the council as well as her time serving on the Borough Assembly, is a key reason citizens should reelect her.
"It's important to that has a lot of experience, especially in these times were going to have problems with our budget," said Therrien. "It's going to be difficult at the city with the cuts that the governor has made to ensure that we provide all the services that we can to our community."
Foster says one of his major concerns is resident income, especially towards blue-collar workers like himself.
"I am very unhappy with the state of wages, generally speaking, for everybody," started Foster. "Considering 65% of the city's budget expenses is towards labor, we have a shortage in basically overall emergency personnel, due to the fact, just like what I'm experiencing, wages."
One topic both candidates expressed similar views on is the budget. They both expressed it as the first item to address for this coming year. They also said the marijuana industry has helped the city greatly as it struggles in finding new revenue sources.
Therrien went on to speak about other goals she has for the council.
"We need to provide a plan for the city," began Therrien. "We haven't had an opportunity to sit down together as a council and see where were going in the future. We're always reacting to what's going on."
She also says snow removal is something that the city needs to address this winter.
"We hopefully won't have a massive snow fall like we had last year," said Therrien. "We've had a lot of complaints of citizens not being able to walk on sidewalks and I think it's one of the areas that I'm going to look at in the future to make sure we clean to sidewalks, especially downtown, because it's really a hazard for people."
Despite their different backgrounds, both candidates believe the city needs to move forward.
Copyright 2019 KTVF. All rights reserved.