Governor's Refusal to Listen to Fish and Game Experts is Mind-Boggling

Letters to the Editor
Anchorage Daily News / Scott Grundy, Fairbanks / February 15, 2003


What has happened to the leadership style of surrounding oneself with professional staff, providing them the tools to do their job and then getting out of their way? It appears our governor trusts no one (not even newly appointed commissioners), is listening to only what he wishes to hear, and is a micro-manager. The job is much too large for this approach.

The governor says he plans to move the highly efficient permitting staff of the Alaska Department of Fish and Game to the bureaucracy of the Alaska Department of Natural Resources. This is being done under the guise of permitting efficiency. Five former Fish and Game commissioners have advised the governor to avoid such a hasty major change. Why would a new governor not listen to such extensive past experience? Wouldn't it be far more prudent for the governor to appoint a new Fish and Game commissioner of his liking who could address the governor's concerns rather than, or prior to, making an extreme change to the administrative process that could prove to be highly detrimental to our commercial fishing and other industries?

Most Alaskans want development to occur in a conscientious fashion. To achieve such development and other long-standing public benefits, we need a wise leader who must first listen to the public, and his professional staff.

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