Stevens: Budget, education among top legislative goals

Commentary By Sen. Gary Stevens, R-Kodiak

For The Cordova Times

I am running for re-election to the Alaska Senate. It has been an honor and a pleasure to serve in the Alaska legislature for the past 16 years, including representing Cordova, Prince William Sound and Yakutat for the last six years.

During my time in office, I have been Senate President, Chairman of Legislative Council, Education, and Rules as well as Majority Leader.  I recently served as National Chairman of the Council of State Governments.

Over the years, I have served on numerous legislative committees and budget subcommittees covering many years. I have learned enormous lessons about how best to assist the communities I represent through the legislative process and interaction with my constituents.  I look forward to meeting, listening to and learning from every community in our district throughout the coming years.

Looking ahead, my priorities include finding workable solutions to resolve Alaska’s budget deficit, excellence in education, finding answers to the high dropout rate in our schools and low graduation rate in higher education, improving civic engagement, maintaining a healthy economy and well-paying jobs, moving ahead on oil and gas development, maintaining a viable marine highway system, protecting our fishing and tourism industries and support for our veterans and seniors.


I have served as an elected public official for over 27 years, as Borough Mayor, City Mayor, School Board President, as well as a state legislator.  That experience has given me a solid understanding of the needs of all levels of government in our district.

My wife, Rita, and I have been married for over 40 years and have three grown children; Anna, Matthew, Natalie and two sons-in-law, Colby and Will.   We are the proud grandparents of three-year-old Isadora.

I promise to continue providing this district with the best possible representation I can in the Alaska Senate and I look forward to working for and with you to achieve that goal.