Michael Tavoliero: Now is the time for Eagle River to come out
By MICHAEL TAVOLIERO
There is a great story about a Christmas roast that I think of whenever I have a challenge with the status quo.
It goes like this: On Christmas morning, mom was making the Christmas roast. She cut off the end and put it in the roasting pan first. Her daughter seeing this immediately asked why she had done this. Mom thought for a moment and said that was how her mother had done it.
Puzzled, the girl asked why.
Mom replied, “Let’s call grandma and see.”
A call went to Grandma, and mom and daughter asked her why, indeed, she always cut the end of the Christmas roast.
Grandma replied, “I cut off the end to put it in the pan.”
What I mean is that we often accept the status quo, never asking why things are done the way they are until we are prompted to think about it.
It’s your boost, especially if you live in Anchorage.
The local government of Alaska is the same way. It’s the same roast with a sliced end to fit in the pan, but few of us really understand why.
Consider this: all local governments in Alaska have elected representatives; all local governments in Alaska have municipal employees; and most local governments in Alaska have a property tax base.
What if I told you that local government doesn’t need any of these?
At first glance, many of you would think of me as ridiculous, radical, or just rummy, but listen to me.
How does the current local government in Alaska’s largest population center, Anchorage, work for you?
How do your elected officials work?
How do your municipal employees work?
How do your property and other local taxes work?
My personal belief is that they are not.
A few months of turning 70, I see elected officials controlled by the Golden Rule. This is the rule that says whoever has the golden rules.
In Anchorage, many elected officials are not controlled by what you or I want, but by the collective hegemony of unions, the education industry, the health industry and the good industry. -to be. Why is it when we are the voters? Well, because municipal and school budgets are close to $ 1.5 billion and having control over elected officials provides a great opportunity for how that money is spent.
It’s a fact.
Municipal employment is controlled in such a way that the cost to the public never decreases and always increases. This became blindingly evident as we witnessed the biggest economic meltdown Alaska has ever seen, driven by Covid. Businesses have closed, people have been made redundant and unemployed, and some have gone bankrupt. I could be wrong, but no municipal employee has missed a paycheck.
It’s a fact.
Property taxes, as well as other forms of fees, costs and taxes, continue to rise, and there is little improvement in services and programs.
It’s a fact.
What if we could have a local government without elected representation, without municipal employees and without property taxes?
I know most of you would be happy at first, but a few seconds later your BS counter would line up with the BS total.
But take a minute. Listen to me.
How does the three legged stool from Anchorage local government, elected officials, municipal employment and property taxes work for you?
Over the past 2 years we have seen blatant demands on our personal rights only to be berated, humiliated and intimidated by our local government and its henchmen. We have seen 2 failed attempts to recall true Marxists. We have seen the election of a man just as mayor only to see a veto proof assembly neutralize his every attempt to improve the quality of life in Anchorage.
Some would say it is politics.
I think this is a trivial, superficial and superficial remark.
I believe Anchorage will never go back to its more conservative roots. As a result, if you haven’t noticed, there has been a population decline in Anchorage and a population increase in the valley. As our rate per mile increases, the value of our properties increases and new taxes come into play.
There is literally almost nothing left for the Conservatives to do except bend down.
I almost say.
There is Eaglexit.
Eaglexit is an educational program designed to provide civic information to residents of Assembly District 2, which includes Eagle River, Chugiak, and the surrounding neighborhoods south of Tikhatnu and north of Eklutna. With this information, it is hoped that the community will be engaged and ready to discuss the issue of detachment from the Municipality of Anchorage and the issue of incorporation of local government.
Many assumed it was a political campaign. It’s not.
This is an educational discussion about the benefits of decentralizing large municipal enclaves.
It is designed to discuss the issue of forming local government, the foundation of freedom in local government, and the expectation of the results that residents want to see in their new local government.
The purpose behind Eaglexit is to actively engage the residents of Assembly District 2 on options for establishing local government to find out if the residents of Assembly District 2 can develop a better system for their local government than the current model of the Municipality of Anchorage.
My personal observation is that over the past decades the current local government in Anchorage has lost its ties to its communities. The Municipality of Anchorage has since established a hegemony of power and control through the unions, the health care industry, the education industry and the welfare industry of the Anchorage local government.
It is a gentle tyranny based on a system of collective local government.
In the early 1830s, Alexis De Tocqueville described “soft tyranny” in “Democracy in America”,
“It covers the surface of society with a web of complicated, meticulous and uniform little rules, through which the most original minds and the most energetic characters cannot penetrate, rise above the crowd. The will of man is not broken, but softened, bent and guided; men are seldom forced by it to act, but they are constantly held back from acting. Such a power does not destroy, but it prevents existence: it does not tyrannize, but it compresses, annoys, extinguishes and amazes a people, until each nation is nothing better than a herd of animals. timid and industrious, whose government is the shepherd.
What is the civic discussion of Eglexit?
First, it asks whether a smaller local government can be more economically efficient and effective than the current model of the Municipality of Anchorage?
The two impartial analyzes carried out by one of Alaska’s leading economic consulting firms, Northern Economics, demonstrate that communities in Assembly District 2 have the economic basis of solvent local government. The question of whether this will increase costs for members of his community? Our answer is no, it will not, and it will improve community participation and municipal service outcomes.
To those of you who think the costs are going to rise: The Municipality of Anchorage has increased the costs of Assembly District 2 every year since we started the Eaglexit discussion.
Our communities include Eklutna, Thunderbird Falls, Peters Creek, Chugiak, Birchwood, Powder Ridge, Downtown Eagle River, Eagle River Valley, Hiland Road, former Fort Richardson and Elmendorf Air Force Base, now JBER, Centennial Park, Muldoon and Tikahtnu.
Our 2010 census population shows a population of 51,281 with 54% of households with children under the age of 18. Chugiak-Eagle River is 45% veterans according to the 2019 US community survey compared to 30% for Muni from Anchorage.
Assembly District 2 comprises a total of 1,050 square miles, bounded by Knik Arm to the west and Mat-Su Borough to the north.
Assembly District 2 is the only rail and road transportation corridor between Mat-Su and the rest of the state and Anchorage and the Kenai Peninsula.
In our discussion of civic education, we explore a variety of types of local government. These fall into two types of representative local authorities: one which uses elected representation and the other which uses direct representation.
We are also exploring the question of how municipal programs, such as education, police, fire, streets and highways, parks and recreation will be funded and managed.
I know that many of you have witnessed with great disappointment and supported at great expense attempts at change for the good of Anchorage local government, but which have repeatedly failed. The Anchorage Assembly District 2 Detachment may be the last chance for meaningful change.
Eaglexit has a plan, and it continues to grow. Don’t you want to join us and make it happen?
Michael Tavoliero is a real estate agent in Eagle River, is active in the Alaska Republican Party and is President of Eaglexit.