New mayor ready to roll

Posted: Tuesday, November 01, 2005

A transition team made up of officials from across the borough has been formed to ensure the approach of newly elected Kenai Peninsula Borough Mayor John Williams is broad-based and practical.

Former Soldotna mayor and state legislator Ken Lancaster will head the team.

"We have a great cross section of people," he said, adding he also hopes for grass-roots support from around the borough.

Other team members include Richard Brown, Charlie Weimer, Tom Irwin and Mari-Kae Huckabay, all of Soldotna; Kenai residents Larry Porter, Scott Walden, Jim Butler and Bernice Caler; Doug Blossom of Ninilchik; Wayne Wong of Kasilof; Diana Zirul of Salamatof; James Mellott of Nikiski; Hugh Chumley of Sterling; Jim Carter of Kalifornsky Beach; Ron Drathman and Jack Cushing of Homer; and Jerry Dixon of Seward.

Former borough assembly member Tim Navarre will be the chief of staff and Mike Huckabay will assist the team as the information technology specialist.

The team will spend this week interviewing borough government departments and providing a synopsis to the mayor.

The team later will break into smaller work groups to review the budget and finances of the borough, emergency management, Central Emergency Services and sections of the school district.

It is anticipated that other experienced officials from those areas will be added to help expedite the review.

Some changes and possible consolidations are expected to occur over time after Williams takes office.

The team's job is to make recommendations concerning the changes.

"The mayor will make the decisions," Lancaster said.

The transition team will help Williams hit the ground running when he takes office Monday.

"We look forward to working as a team," Lancaster said.

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