Anchorage Assembly certifies municipal election

an election official stands at a distance to a few people who are voting. other election officials and computers in the foreground
Election official Erik Hill (left) aids voters through the voting process on April 5, 2021, as voting comes to a close for the day at the Loussac Library voting center. (Jeff Chen/Alaska Public Media)

The Anchorage Assembly voted unanimously to certify the results of the April municipal election Tuesday. This means results are now official, though they may still be subject to a recount, if candidates are within half a percentage point of each other.

Results may also be contested on legal grounds if there’s proof of fraud, corrupt election practices, or a candidate does not meet qualifications for office.

The certified results show former Air Force and commercial pilot Dave Bronson and East Anchorage Assembly member Forrest Dunbar advancing to the mayoral runoff next month, with Bronson securing 33% of the vote and Dunbar with 31%.

Kelly Lessens, Pat Higgins, Dora Wilson and Carl Jacobs, all Democrat-endorsed candidates, came out on top in the school board races, unseating two incumbents. Lessens may face a recount as she is just 0.35% ahead of her opponent Judy Eledge. 

Recounts must be filed within seven days of Tuesday’s certification. Election contests must be filed within nine days.

This year, the clerk reported more than 800 “challenged” ballots — ballots initially rejected because they lacked a valid signature.

Voters with this issue had the opportunity to “cure” their ballots by verifying their signatures. Municipal clerk Barbara Jones said she does not expect the election report to change, but any ballot concerns or discrepancies can be reported to the clerk’s office by phone or email.

More than 75,000 people voted in this election, about 32% of eligible Anchorage voters. The mayoral runoff election is on May 11.

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Kavitha George is the host of Alaska Morning News at Alaska Public Media. She also reports on business, labor and the economy. Reach her at