Candidate Profile: David Guttenberg runs for Borough Assembly Seat A

Published: Sep. 21, 2021 at 5:14 PM AKDT
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FAIRBANKS, Alaska (KTVF) - David Guttenberg is running for seat A on the Fairbanks North Star Borough Assembly.

He said he is running because he enjoys working on public policy and making a difference. “I think what I’ve illustrated my years in the legislature is a calm competence of getting things done and working with other people. I’ve worked with Republicans. I’ve worked with Independents. I’ve worked with the Democrats, getting things done and working together in a rational way. Politics is the art of compromise, people say. In the end you’ve got to deal with what you deal with, and get the best you can get out of it, and I think I’ve done that.”

During his time in the state legislature, Guttenberg worked on improving broadband access across the state. “The borough assembly, through the mayor’s actions, has some things on the table. There’s a lot of money coming in. There’s a lot of money that’s been spent on broadband for the private sector, and they’ve used it well for themselves but there hasn’t been enough of a public purpose part of it. When you’re taking tax money, there should be a really big public part of it that needs to be done, and people across the Interior and Fairbanks have not benefited the way the tax money has been spent. So I want to make sure that future expenditures on broadband go to the benefit of the people.”

He mentioned the difficulties brought upon by remote learning during the COVID-19 pandemic. “There’s really limited broadband access, and that should not be. It’s such an industry now where broadband’s delivered for television and internet, all entertainment and everything. It needs to be available at a level that it’s sustainable, that it’s affordable, reliable, and at speeds that function well.”

Guttenberg’s also worked on establishing a veterans’ cemetery near Ester. “You’re up on the hilltop and there’s a turnout, a bus turnout to look at the Alaska Range. You go a little bit past that and then there’s just this, it’s a gated road. It comes out above that another 100 feet higher, and that would be a phenomenal place for people to be buried here in the Interior.”

He added, “The money’s already there unless it’s been taken. The money’s already there. The project’s already there. We need to continue that. That is an important part of life in Fairbanks for veterans and their families.”

Guttenberg concluded by saying “I’ve always heard that politics at the borough assembly is pretty tough because you’re dealing with local stuff. You’re dealing with people. You’re not dealing with issues and legislation. You actually have people in front of you, whether it’s planning or zoning, or dog parks, or the budget, whatever it is, it’s very local. It’s hard for people to get to Juneau, but it’s not hard to get down to the borough building to testify on you issues, so it’s very local very personal.

Guttenberg is running against Kevin McKinley in the municipal elections on October 5th.

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