Former Kenai Peninsula Borough Chief of Staff, John Quick, has been issued a fine from the Alaska Public Offices Commission.
Quick was a candidate for borough assembly last fall, running to represent Nikiski. He and several other candidates were supported by a political action group called AlaskaYes, founded by prominent Peninsula Republicans, including former assembly member Blaine Gilman and also Quick himself.
Quick’s then-campaign manager was in contact with AlaskaYes about the content of some social media and other advertisements. Todd Smith of Kenai filed the complaint in September after seeing the ads show up in his social media feeds.
“(I) Just saw a lot of really negative ads and starting looking into this AlaskaYes. Of course, they’re a C-4 (non-profit) so you can’t really see where they’re getting their money, but you can see their articles of incorporation and their filing with APOC. At that time, their APOC filing listed Mr. Quick as a director and their articles of incorporation are signed by Mr. Quick and the incumbent for the seat he’s running for, Wayne Ogle.”
Quick would resign from the group, but only after the complaint had been filed with the state. Smith said it wasn’t an easy choice to get involved.
“(It) turns out there’s a lot of people in the community who don’t think it’s right. I’ve had a lot of support and a lot of calls from people that I know that aren’t that involved that said ‘thank you, I saw those ads too and it’s just not right," Smith says.
The ads targeted just a few candidates for borough assembly seats, none of whom wound up winning. Quick came in third in his three person race.
The APOC investigation found other issues with the group’s financial disclosures, stemming from a Republican party gathering last August. Quick did not contest the Commission’s findings, and has been ordered to pay a fine of $300 for violating state statute by not returning the value of prohibited in-kind donations from AlaskaYes.
The Commission also looked into whether Quick violated state law by failing to report those contributions, however, he was exempt from such filings. This wraps up a tough 13 or so months for Quick who, after leaving the borough to take a position in Governor Mike Dunleavy’s administration, was forced to resign after his education and business credentials were called into question.