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Three candidates vie for two Kenai council seats

Posted: September 24, 2012 - 10:03pm  |  Updated: September 27, 2012 - 11:35am

Challenger James Rowell and incumbents Ryan Marquis and Bob Molloy are competing for two Kenai City council seats up for grabs in the Oct. 2 municipal election.

The seats are for a three-year term.

Rowell said he is running because it is “practically a moral obligation.” If he wants to see a change in the city, he said, then he should try to bring it about, himself.

“If you think you can make a difference, if you think you can help,” the 46-year-old resident said, “you need to throw your hat in the ring and see what can come of it yourself.”

He said any event that gathers the community and generates year-round revenue for the city would be an improvement, though he is already impressed with the number of community events the city hosts.

“Like the Saturday market that they do over in front of the visitor center,” he said. “That’s a terrific idea. I love that thing.”

He also wants to see more support for the city’s debt reduction.

He has always looked for ways to improve certain topics, he said; now he wants the chance.

“I like the political process and, with the way things are going with the country today, your best chance of getting something done that’s actually going to affect people’s lives is local politics.”

Marquis, 30, has already served one term on council. He has also served a year as vice mayor.

Marquis said he will work to improve the city government’s relationship with its community members.

“I want more people to feel like the city is going to respect their needs,” he said, “that we’ll look into it and give it a serious review.”

Residents should not be surprised when the city listens to them, he said, referring to recent renovations to Beaver Creek Park.

“That was a pleasant surprise, but I don’t want that to be a surprise,” he said.

 He represents an important dimographic, he said. He is one of two members who has children passing through the Kenai schools.

“I think it’s important that when we have a diverse council that we have, we make sure we have people that are representing all the demographics that our city covers,” he said.

He also wants to make the government more accessible to the community. He said council has covered complicated issues and often he sees the public leaving confused.

“One of my goals over the next three years is to do some code clean up,” he said. “Clarify some things, take the ambiguity out of it so people know what to expect when their dealing with the city.”

Molloy, 59, has served seven years on council and he owns his own law practice.

In the past, Molloy was involved with an import and export business and a salmon sausage manufacturing business. He said his time owning his attorney business and working for private businesses has given him valuable experience for council.

“Certainly the attorney work helps to some extent, but I’ve also been running it as a business so I have handled issues with employ hiring and firing, how to make resources, pay the bills,” he said. “I deal with government regulation. Payroll tax is a big issue for us the past year.”

Molloy said the dipnet fishery’s waste management system needs to be resolved, but doing so will require city money.

The city is also involved in building two assisted living projects and a health and wellness center, he said, and those projects will also drain the city’s coffers.

“We have to figure out how to meet those additional needs,” he said, “but we have to do so with the resources that we have or are expecting to have and maintain our stability with our sales tax rate and our low property tax rate.”


Dan Schwartz can be reached at

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JamesRowell 09/25/12 - 08:55 am
A moment of your time........

I just wanted to take a minute to say "Thank You" to the Clarion for allowing me and my esteemed opponents the opportunity to speak and to let the people of Kenai know our thoughts on how we would like to contribute to the city. I have enjoyed this process and I hope I can have your support on election day. Again, thank you!

rainbowbrite 09/25/12 - 12:07 pm
"Marquis has represented a

"Marquis has represented a unique demographic on the council, he said. He is the only member who has children passing through the Kenai schools.

“I think it’s important that when we have a diverse council that we have, we make sure we have people that are representing all the demographics that our city covers,” he said."

-huh? Did he conveniently forget that his own brother in law in the same city council also has kids who go to the same school as his?

Not that it really matters that much but why this inaccuracy?

RyanMarquis 09/25/12 - 01:20 pm
My nephews...

Of course I didn't forget my nephews! Apparently there was a miscommunication between myself and the reporter (the statement about being the only member with young children wasn't a quote). I did state that I believed it was important to have members on the Council who are raising children in the City. But to be clear, Councilmember Bookey has young children as well.

Allen 09/28/12 - 06:04 pm
Other People On The Council Have Children

I'm pretty sure that every current Kenai City Council member except Tim Navarre has had children "passing through Kenai schools." Anyway, what difference does that make? The City doesn't have anything to do with Kenai schools, they are run by the Borough School District. And I'm pretty sure that even people whose children are grown up know something about raising children or what parents of school-age children might want to see a city provide for children or parents. No need to be divisive.

Watchman on the Wall
Watchman on the Wall 09/27/12 - 08:13 pm
It's a Religious & Moral thing i think

When i see the people running for the school board and review their Liberal Morals and religious beliefs i wonder.
I wonder if their desire to be on the school board is not for a further removal of OUR Morals and freedoms Under God.
I wonder if more restrictions against the truth of Americas History by brainwashing of our young kids into secularism and humanism or their end game?
But then i see the very same control freaks wanting to be on the Hospital board as well and also wonder why the massive push to control people at every turn by these Liberals whose only hope is in them selves and will step on your head to make a deal for self advancement and political advancements.

Please forgive me if i have hit a sore spot by pegging you Liberals correctly with your desire to control at every turn in our state and cities and much money is to be made from suckered citizens on the peninsula and state levels, then man oh man if you can make it to the show and support Obama, WOW.
Of course i'm not talking to those that are morally sound and truly desire to help others in our fight against secularism and humanisms hopeless spread and desire to control others with their hopeless fundamental changes and beliefs in man all by political & religious means. You are the ones i'll be voting for.

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