By a two-to-one margin, Kenai resident Gary Knopp defeated former Alaska House of Representatives member Kelly Wolf for the District 1 seat on the Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly in Tuesday’s municipal election.
Knopp outpolled Wolf by a margin of 64 to 35 percent, Knopp receiving 630 votes to Wolf’s 344. The race for the seat being was vacated by assembly member Dan Chay, of Kenai, who opted not to seek re-election.
The race for the District 1 (Kalifornsky) seat was the only real contest. Two other incumbents ran unopposed.
Assembly President Ron Long, of Seward, was re-elected to Assembly Seat 6, (East Peninsula), garnering better than 98 percent of the vote, 743 votes.
Meanwhile, assembly member Milli Martin, of Diamond Ridge, was re-elected to Assembly Seat 9, the South Peninsula district. She captured 98 percent of the vote with 682 voters.
“Obviously I’m extremely happy,” Knopp said Tuesday night. “There are so many people to thank, starting with my wife (Helen), who did the majority of the work and put up with me for the last month. I want to thank everyone who turned out to vote.”
Knopp said he was ready to begin and “get on the downhill side of the learning curve.”
Martin said she is looking forward to tackling some important issues, including provisions for governing steep slope development, an important issue in the Homer area. She also said she is “really heartened” by the defeat of Proposition 2.
“As we go into the budget cycle, we will see what the Legislature will do, but we have the tools to help ourselves,” she said.
Finally, Martin said her goal is to “get some control” over property taxes. She said property owners were “caught in a vice” between rising property values and the borough’s need for revenue to pay for increasingly expensive services.
Long, who is in California, could not be reached for comment.
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