Two seats on the Homer City Council are up for election in the October 1, 2019 municipal election. The seats are currently held by Shelly Erickson and Tom Stroozas, who were elected in 2016. Both Erickson and Stroozas have filed for the upcoming election along with two new candidates for Homer City Council, Joey Evensen and Storm Hansen.
KBBI’s Kathleen Gustafson has this profile of Councilmember Tom Stroozas.
Potential candidates for Homer City Council can take a number of routes to prepare to serve. Tom Stroozas may have taken them all.
“I've served a number of years on the board of directors of the Homer Chamber of Commerce. I'm very active in our local Homer Elks Lodge. I served two years as president there. I'm currently a five-year trustee at that level," said Stroozas.
Stroozas also publishes America's Cuisine, a dining guide for tourists that is in hotels all over the state. He says he prepared for the demands of the Homer City Council before he was elected, through his four years on the Homer Planning and Zoning Commission. When surveying the council’s accomplishments over his time as a council member, Stroozas says their biggest accomplishment is obvious.
“It's our new police station that's currently under construction. And the site for that police station was just a perfect place for it to be it was land that the city owned that was off the tax rolls. It's got access on three sides. It's just it was just one of those no-brainers.”
He also cites the Greatland extension between Pioneer Avenue and the bypass and, he says, the HERC building is an ongoing issue he would like to help resolve.
“We hashed this over again in a work session and we are going to ultimately demo (demolish) that building and now we're going to talk about what are we going to put there for the community. Are we going to put a community rec center there? Are we going to host conventions and large format meetings and things like that?"
When I ask if he thinks that will require a bond to accomplish, Stroozas says no.
“We want to do it without a bond issue. Well can't tell you yet because we're in the early stages of discussion, but we wanted the public to know that we were not going to supplant their recreational needs by taking that facility away. It'll be an inconvenience for a year or two but it’s a four and a half acre parcel right at the gateway to town and we’re going to make it a showcase.”
If reelected, Stroozas says that one of his priorities is to address the issue of beach and bluff erosion. Using the example of beach erosion at campsites on the spit. The city replenished the sand at the campground, which had almost completely washed away.
“We've replenished it to a certain point now and we're continuing to move forward in that effort utilizing a resource that we would normally have to truck away which are dredging from the harbor and we just put them on the other side and fill it up," Stroozas said.
He admits that is not a solution to the problem, just a quick fix and says that the city is continuing to work with the Corps of Engineers.
Stroozas says he considers his election three years ago to be a vote of confidence from the community.
“I think I've developed a very positive track record for this community and I would encourage you to get out and vote for the candidate of your choice on October 1.”
Tom Stroozas, candidate for reelection to Homer City Council.
You can hear profiles of all the candidates by going to kbbi.org
and you can see the candidates statements on the City of Homer website.