Interim chief of staff tapped: Bannock to serve as borough mayor's aide

Posted: Sunday, February 14, 2010

Duane Bannock, the manager of the borough's Spruce Bark Beetle Mitigation Program, will assume the duties as the mayor's acting chief of staff.

"I'm honored to have this opportunity and support the administration," Bannock said.

Kenai Peninsula Borough Mayor Dave Carey said he is happy to welcome Bannock aboard.

"I'm very comfortable working with him, and he's very knowledgeable of things that are going on," Carey said.

Bannock will serve as Carey's chief of staff temporarily. Carey said the Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly could choose to eliminate the chief of staff position entirely, and Carey does not want to offer the job to anyone unless he's positive there is a job to offer.

Bannock said he does not plan to step into the role full-time, even if the assembly approves the chief of staff position in the mayor's FY2011 budget.

"My goal over the next few months is to eliminate one major position in the mayor's office," Bannock said. "Thus, I would consider it a failure if the mayor wants me to be there in four months."

Bannock said he takes government from the bottom up approach, and he said eliminating a top position in the administration falls in line with that philosophy.

While serving as the acting chief of staff, Bannock said he plans to focus on implementing an energy efficiency policy in the borough and to examine the structure of the borough's operations.

The mayor's Chief of Staff Hugh Chumley submitted his resignation Jan. 22 and will officially leave the post on Friday.

Michael Fastabend will assume Spruce Bark Beetle leadership duties when Bannock moves into his new, temporary role.

Andrew Waite can be reached at

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