Alaska in Brief

Q&A with Alaska House District 2 candidate Kenny Skaflestad

By: - July 28, 2022 12:11 am
The House floor on April 22, 2022, in Juneau, Alaska. (Photo by Rashah McChesney)

The House floor on April 22, 2022, in Juneau, Alaska. (Photo by Rashah McChesney)

The Alaska Beacon asked Alaska’s legislative candidates to answer a 15-question survey about their positions on a variety of issues. Read all of their responses here. Answers have not been edited.

Kenny Skaflestad, Republican candidate from Hoonah

Yes/No questions

The Alaska Constitution allows legislators to call a constitutional convention at any time. Are you interested in calling a convention?


Would you be willing to join a coalition majority in which the opposite political party controls a majority of seats?


Should new public employees have access to a pension?


Should the state take over the federal permitting process that regulates construction in wetlands?


Should Juneteenth be a state holiday?


Open-ended questions

How should the state of Alaska set the amount of the Permanent Fund dividend each year?

Per statute, existing or renewed.

What’s the biggest need in your district, and how would you address it?

Economic diversity through resource availability and industrial innovation.

State government needs refreshed policy by which to encourage private innovation, big or small. Local planning efforts should be incentivised where devised frameworks for short and long term plans are provided. Local government then submits entries within the frameworks, which are then scored and rewarded per state policy. Relatively easy legislation which networks with federal and private funding systems.

What policies and laws should Alaska follow with regard to abortion?

1. No funding for elective abortions except for substantiated rape or developed risk of life
2. Heartbeat or other measurable human processes/functions to define autonomous life.

How should the state reduce the threat of gun violence and mass shootings?

1.Enhance public safety presence and training.
2.Aggressive prosecution of offenders.
3. Severe sentences for offenders.
4. Train and enhance robust personal carry populace.

How much should a legislator’s faith or religion determine state law and policy?

Only as much as one’s faith or religion provides guiding morals as depicted by the founding of our constitution.

What should the state do to improve retention of public employees, including teachers?

Create much higher standards as condition of employment. Eliminate perception of state employment as a civil “program”. Better refine goals and develop incentives/rewards for performance. Better define: “education” as policy.

What does an ideal state ferry system look like?

A) Intricate definition of “marine highway”. Incentive based scheduling based on local government sustainability plan. Teamwork more involving local governments and remote private sector.
B) Renewed fleet vessels built to most rugged use criteria. Disallow deferred maintenance as option towards vessels and facilities.
C) Meets new criteria for USDOT highway funding.
D) Remote locations rely on ground transportation by which to shorten distance between ports.

What, if any, changes does the state need to make to ensure voting is equitable and secure?

1. Ballot chain of custody system intact.
2. Hand-count only until population exceeds 3M.
3. Prohibit harvesting of ballots by political interests.
4. Absentee and Mail ballots per valid reason only.
5. Only ballots received by election day to be valid.
6. Ballot counts to proceed upon the close of election day and results announced per precinct upon unofficial completion.

What do you intend to do about the poor returns of salmon in the Yukon and Kuskokwim drainages, and what are the main causes of the problems?

1. Reduce correlative by-catch activity.
2. Pursue more robust biological determination for decline.
3. Pursue potentials for enhancement and added escapement population.

What constitutional amendments, if any, do you support?

1. Diversity for educational funding.
2. PFD formula with emergency options.
3. Federal holdings and jurisdiction reduced to national defense, international concerns or crucial fixtures only.

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James Brooks
James Brooks

James Brooks is a longtime Alaska reporter, having previously worked at the Anchorage Daily News, Juneau Empire, Kodiak Mirror and Fairbanks Daily News-Miner. A graduate of Virginia Tech, he is married to Caitlyn Ellis, owns a house in Juneau and has a small sled dog named Barley. He can be contacted at [email protected]