The Anchorage Assembly heard emotional public testimony at their regular meeting Tuesday evening. Representatives of the Anchorage chapters of the NAACP and the ACLU, as well as 17 voters called on the body to appoint an independent investigator to look into possible voter disenfranchisement during the April 3 Municipal Election. Instead, the Assembly went about business as usual. With a shadow still hanging over the Municipal Election, the Anchorage Assembly decided to stick to their agenda, appointing a new chair and vice chair. The body voted Ernie Hall in as chair, replacing Debbie Ossiander, and Jennifer Johnston replaced Hall as Vice Chair. Chair Hall said the Assembly’s hands are tied because they’re waiting on a report from the Election Commission. “We would have loved to have had that report tonight, but we think it is much more important that we give them the time to do their job right,” Hall said.
Voters are still waiting to find out why there was a shortage of ballots during the April 3rd Anchorage Municipal Election. The Assembly has refused an outside investigator and is set to take up the matter as soon as the Clerk’s office and the Election Commission finish their reports. Anchorage Assembly Chair, Debbie Ossiander says it’s too early to appoint an outside investigator to look into the Anchorage ballot debacle. The ACLU of Alaska made the request for an outside investigator Thursday, after widespread ballot shortages and reports that voters were turned away at the polls during Tuesday’s Municipal Election.