Candidates for State Senate and House discuss travel industry

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FAIRBANKS, Alaska - Political discussions continued today with the Visitor Industry State House Forum sponsored by Explore Fairbanks at the Wedgewood Resort. Candidates for State Senate District A, Scott Kawasaki and Pete Kelly, were at the forum. They were joined by state house candidates from Districts 1, 2, 4, 5, and 6.

A panel made up of tourism representatives asked the candidates questions regarding how they would maintain a vigorous travel industry. The candidates then asked the industry panelists what improvements could be made to better increase local employment, and how the hotel bed tax could be improved as well.

Kathryn Dodge, running in District 1, did not attend due to a scheduling conflict, and Tammie Wilson and Click Bishop opted not to attend because they are running unopposed.

Tim Lamkin, non-partisan state house candidate for District 4, was not at the forum due to an oversight. He arrived at the event towards the end, and was given two minutes to share his thoughts and experience in the travel industry.

"Any of you here ever visit Eldorado Gold Mine or Gold Dredge 8? I'm with tunnel 10, the guy in the tunnel with the hard hat and head lamp on his head. Also at Gold Dredge 8, I spent as the lead narrator. I've seen thousands and thousands, tens of thousands, of visitors coming to this industry. Perhaps, I don't know for sure, but I'd like to venture and say that I probably have the most experience in the tourism industry, at least on this panel here. That's kind of it in a nut-shell. Sorry I've really been happy to participate more thoroughly."