West Anchorage residents will vote in a special election in early August to replace Assemblyman Tim Steele, who recently resigned over health issues.
In the meantime, an interim replacement will be appointed to fill the seat, Assembly members decided Tuesday night. Applications will be available starting Thursday through the city clerk's office, said city clerk Barbara Jones. The applications will be accepted until 5 p.m. on June 25.
The city will also have to advertise for the temporary job, at a cost of about $10,000, according to the clerk's office. But Assembly members said Tuesday it's important for West Anchorage to have full representation. The other West Anchorage Assemblyman, Eric Croft said, said community councils in the district had asked for the seat to be filled before the special election.
The special election is set for Aug. 7. The unusual summer timing will accompany a sprint-paced campaign in the coming weeks.
On Tuesday, a second candidate stepped up to announce a bid to replace Steele. Sam Moore, the president of the North Star Community Council, said Tuesday he hopes to be elected as Steele's replacement.
Austin Quinn-Davidson, the legal affairs director of the public lands nonprofit Great Land Trust, has also announced plans to run.
The West Anchorage district stretches from the area around Kincaid Park and West Dimond Boulevard up north to Turnagain.
Moore, a 33-year-old accountant who is active in local politics, said he plans to focus on affordable housing and crime. This is Moore's first run for political office, though Moore said he considered running for Steele's seat in the last election cycle.
Moore, who is legally blind, called his run "historic" in a statement to news media. He is a member of the city's public transit advisory board.
Quinn-Davidson, 38, said in a recent interview she's concerned about crime and wants West Anchorage residents to feel comfortable on the city's trail system. She said she also wants to support economic innovation in Anchorage if elected to the Assembly. It's also her first run for political office.
The candidates have a little more than a month to make their pitches to West Anchorage voters. Ballot packages will be mailed July 17, according to a calendar created by the clerk's office.