Our Iñupiat ancestors survived over thousands of years as a hunter/gather society because of their ability to quickly adapt to the ever changing environment. Much like our ancestors, our home rule Borough is adapting to daily changes while providing basic services to our residents through three main departments; Planning, Public Services and Economic Development. Additionally, the Borough supports the Sulanich Art Gallery, which promotes traditional Native arts and crafts by both passing on our traditional art skills and by providing a reliable source of income for our residents. Specialized support services are offered through the Office of the Mayor, the Clerk’s department and the accounting department. Our departments are here to serve our residents’ needs as best we can, so please come by and visit your Borough at work.
Our annual budget is finite, and we cannot deliver all of the products and services we would like to; however, we are uniquely positioned to greatly expand our role in the state’s economy. With declining oil revenue, Alaska needs an economic bridge until new technology and exploration can begin expanding production. The state also needs to find ways to permanently diversify its economy. The undeveloped mineral resources of the Northwest Arctic region offer a major opportunity to expand economic diversity for our region and the state, and to provide plenty of high-paying jobs in the very near future. The Borough will be an active participant with our development partners as they explore and develop our mineral resources. We will use the qualities passed down by our ancestors of courage, confidence, humility, respect, integrity and sharing as we forge ahead to strengthen existing partnerships and establishing new partnerships. Our Borough will respect our past while planning for our future, being ever mindful that as Inupiaq people, our way of life is preserved particularly the importance of subsistence and using a balanced approach to resource development.
I look forward to working with the communities and our residents over the next three years.