The Seward Phoenix Log - News of the Eastern Kenai Peninsula since 1966

Mayoral Candidate Questionnaire - Jean Bardarson


Wolfgang Kurtz | The Seward Phoenix LOG

City of Seward Mayoral candidate Jean Bardarson.

Jean Bardarson

Seward has miles and miles of water, sewer, roads and electrical infrastructure, much of which needs repair or replacement. How would you rank the need for attention in those areas and, if elected, what would you propose to address any or all of these issues?

The City must focus on maintaining the public infrastructure for our citizens and our businesses. As mayor, I would review the assessments that have already been completed by the various departments through the public process. Those assessments show which capital projects are critical risk, high risk and moderate risk based on the remaining life expectancy of the City’s infrastructure. Within those categories, new facts may change the ranking of projects. For example, the Lowell Point Wastewater Lagoon needs to be given a higher ranking on the list due to the problems that arose over the summer. In addition to using the existing rankings to identify critical needs, I would also give high priority to those projects which have already received funding commitments so that we can spend that money before a funding source reclaims it. Funding for these needs will come from a variety of sources. The City will access third party funding sources first, which includes state and federal funds as well as grant sources. For those projects that have not yet received third party funding, I would ask the departments to forward fund a portion of the improvements and our maintenance needs. This will allow us to meet any matching fund requirements imposed by funding sources. This is how we funded a portion of the harbor improvements, and it worked well. To the extent third party funding is not sufficient, we will need to consider all other sources such as bonding, assessment districts, or other methods that require the public to pay for capital needs of the City.

What should the city do to meet the needs of the citizens?

We need to gather information from a broad spectrum of our residents on what they perceive to be the needs of the community. Every council member and many City employees would be asked to help gather this information. Residents would also be encouraged to submit information through the City’s website, by mail, email or telephone. We also need to ask them to rank and prioritize those needs. Once we have that information, we can move forward with scoping each project, identifying funding sources, identifying the labor, equipment and materials needed as well as their sources, putting the project out for bid in compliance with our City ordinances, and then completing the project. Once a project is moving forward, we can begin this process for the next item on this list of citizen identified needs. The list would remain fluid so that new needs identified by our citizens could be added at any time.

Opposing candidate Tim McDonald's Questionnaire answers

Mayoral race story



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