Kenai candidates discuss views: James Jenckes, Kenai City Council candidate

Posted: Tuesday, September 30, 2003

Hello, my name is James "Jim" Jenckes. I am running for the position of Kenai City Council. I thought I would tell you a little about myself and then give you my reasons for running for the city council.

I'm originally from Phoenix, Ariz. I first came to Alaska in August 1973 with the U.S. Air Force. I was stationed in Cold Bay until August 1974. While there I met and married Joanne Mac, who was born and raised in King Cove. I spent five more years in the U.S. Air Force, stationed near Spokane, Wash.

We then moved to Phoenix for a short time before returning to Alaska in the summer of 1980. I did some commercial salmon fishing that summer. We again returned to Phoenix for the winter, after which we again returned to Alaska in May 1981. After salmon fishing that summer we moved to Anchorage and then moved on down to Kenai in November 1981. Fortunately, I was able to obtain work at the Tesoro Refinery in the electrical-instrument department. I have worked there almost 22 years. Since we married, my wife and I have raised four children. My wife is now employed by the school district as a Title VII tutor at Kenai Central High School. For further information you may view my Web page at

As to why I am running for the position for Kenai City Council, I am interested in being part of the future development of the community in regard to the social, economic and quality of life issues. I am very much concerned about senior citizen issues. I believe we need more senior housing projects. Both assisted living and congregate types should be planned for and pursued.

Additionally, I am very concerned about the retail business situation here. We need some way to draw the consumer to our town. Presently, many folks, I believe, are traveling to Soldotna and beyond just to find everyday essentials. Kenai has a couple of fine grocery stores and soon there will be a great hardware store here.

But Kenai still won't have a store that will provide things like causal clothes, shoes and variety items at bargain prices. I think we need to get another Kmart-type store located in the city. I believe another big box retailer would be a huge drawing card for the rest of the peninsula. I believe it would keep more of our folks shopping here in Kenai and I bet we would get lots of folks coming here from Seward to Homer. This could give local businesses here an opportunity to serve these folks. Also, I would like to make sure the city maintains its present quality of essential services that makes Kenai such a great place to live. Quality services, such as police, fire, water and sewer can help induce businesses and families to our town.

You may e-mail me at with questions and concerns. Please remember to get out and vote on Oct. 7.

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