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Anchorage Assembly votes to change municipal election date

By Dave Detling 11:29 PM February 25, 2014

Municipal elections will move from April to November starting in 2017

ANCHORAGE – In a 6-4 vote Anchorage Assembly members voted Tuesday night to move municipal elections from April to November, starting in 2017.

Assemblyman Chris Birch originally introduced the ordinance last fall. He said he felt moving the municipality’s elections would increase voter turnout.

Assembly members Tim Steele, Elvi Gray-Jackson, Paul Honeman and Dick Traini opposed the change, saying more voter input was needed. Patrick Flynn was absent from the vote.

Mayor Dan Sullivan told KTVA he favored the date change.

During Tuesday’s public hearing, Assembly members offered alternatives to improving voter turnout without having to adopt a change of date. There was talk of mail-in votes as well as syncing voting to residents’ Permanent Fund Dividends. None were adopted.

Those opposed to the ordinance say they are concerned about future election implications.

Those in favor of the ordinance say they’re confident election implementation will be hammered out accordingly over the next few years.

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