Assemblywoman Grace Merkes, of Sterling, was unanimously elected president of the Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly on Tuesday, as the body selected new officers to serve for the next year.
"I've never been the president," Merkes joked. "I guess I had to before I'm off."
Merkes' current term will be up next year and she will be ineligible to run again for three years under new term limit provisions approved by voters Oct. 2.
Merkes was first elected to the assembly in 1991, and subsequently re-elected in 1992, 1993, 1996, 1999, 2002, and 2005.
Pete Sprague, a past-president of the assembly, was named vice president. He was elected in 1998, 2001, 2002, 2004 and 2007.
They replace Assemblyman Ron Long, of Seward, as president, and Assemblywoman Margaret Gilman, as vice president.
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