By Tommy Wells
Seward Phoenix LOG 

Pierce, Hutchins to face off in test run-off on Oct. 24


October 19, 2017 | View PDF

An often testy campaign between the two remaining candidates for the Kenai Peninsula Borough’s mayoral position will come to an end on Tuesday, October 24. Voters will head to the polls that day to participate in a run-off election to determine whether Charlie Pierce or Linda Farnsworth Hutchings will assume the duties of borough mayor.

Hutchings and Pierce were forced into a run-off on October 3 when neither managed to claim enough votes to win the mayoral seat outright. Under borough code, the winner has to receive at least 50 percent of the popular vote. In the October 3 voting, Pierce received 39 percent of the ballots cast, while Hutching garnered 31 percent. Former borough mayor Dale Bagley finished a distant third.

The race has been less than friendly between Pierce, a former executive with Enstar, and Hutchings. During a campaign stop in Seward in September, Hutchings chided Pierce on an incident involving a delayed sales tax payment. Earlier this week, an attorney representing Pierce served Hutchings with a cease and desist letter, asking that she and her representatives stop talking about claims of domestic violence or they could face legal proceedings. Hutchings denied spreading the information, saying it was being disseminated by people on social media sites.

The winner of the runoff will replace outgoing mayor Mike Navarre, who reached the two-term limit this fall. Navarre has been mayor since 2011 and previously served as mayor from 1996–1999.


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