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City of Seward,Alaska City Council Minutes <br /> January 22, 2018 Volume 39, Page 345 <br /> Andy Mezirow said he was a local resident and business owner, and served as a voting <br /> member on the North Pacific Fishery Management Council; he understood that being on a council <br /> sometimes required making difficult and controversial decisions.Tonight he wanted to speak about <br /> the city manager;he wondered if it was possible to address performance concerns through the annual <br /> review process. If there were deficiencies with how department heads were managed, perhaps <br /> council should direct the city manager to provide strong and clear direction.Mezirow wondered what <br /> kind of new city manager council would expect to find in today's market.He was also concerned that <br /> the city would experience a break in continuity with current projects.Mezirow's experience with the <br /> City Manager Hunt and Assistant City Manager Long had been one of the most pro-business,pro- <br /> Seward, and pro-fishing administrations he had ever worked with. <br /> Kim Kowalski-Rogers usually watched council meetings from home,but wanted to come <br /> tonight. She had started to wonder what the citizens of Seward were actually thinking; there have <br /> been complaints about specific departments,name calling,accusations that the city manager was a <br /> bully, misspelled words, and concerns about posted rules. She wondered why some of these <br /> complaints were being raised at council meetings instead of being taken care of at the department or <br /> administrative level.Kowalski-Rogers had worked her entire career with the city in many capacities, <br /> and she emphatically said the city manager was not a bully. She had never witnessed,nor been the <br /> recipient, of any bullying from the city's current administration. The real bullies were the citizens <br /> who came to council with these minor complaints. <br /> Paul Rupple said three years ago in January 2015, the city manager had his contract <br /> extended and received a raise from the city council;now he wondered what had changed in the last <br /> three years. What he saw were newly paved roads, continued development at the Seward Marine <br /> Industrial Center(SMIC),and record-setting tourism numbers.Rupple said there were many people <br /> who were very optimistic about the future of Seward,and part of that was due to the city manager. <br /> Rupple felt Hunt was an advocate for the city, and in all his interactions with him,Hunt had been <br /> honest with him,and he always received a quick response.He was concerned that the city manager <br /> and his family were being treated poorly; he urged the council to be more respectful and more <br /> thoughtful. Rupple appreciated the tough job of being on council, and thanked council for their <br /> service. <br /> Cliff Krug said last Saturday was the first"Seward Second Saturday"and there had been 26 <br /> businesses which participated;most had reported improved business activity.Those businesses that <br /> tracked their promotions through social media reported a 25-44%activity increase.The next Second <br /> Saturday would be February 10, 2018; home businesses and summer seasonal businesses were <br /> welcome to take part. The idea for Seward Second Saturday had sprung from the Seward Business <br /> Network which met on the first and third Thursday mornings at 8:00 a.m. at the Breeze Inn. The <br /> Seward Chamber of Commerce and the Historic Preservation Commission would be working <br /> together on improved signage to promote and facilitate tourism. <br /> Josie McClain said she was a supervisor at the TYC. As a supervisor, she tried to produce <br /> the best programs possible for the families of Seward;judging from the comments she received from <br /> students and their parents,the TYC was doing a pretty good job. She encouraged her staff to share <br /> their thoughts about how to improve the program; she wanted to afford her staff the same kind of <br /> support that she felt through her years of experience with the city. In each of the various positions <br /> she had held at the city,her supervisors had helped her learn and grow. <br />