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City Council Seat C: Tobin Sees a ‘Burst’ of Arctic Attention, Incumbent Pomeranz Focuses on Cost of Living

Nome City Council Seat C Incumbent Randy Pomeranz (left) and challenger Lew Tobin. Photos: Pomeranz, Matthew F. Smith, KNOM file; Tobin, provided by the candidate.

Nome’s Oct. 6 city election is just a week away, and beyond voting for mayor, school and utility boards, and a local representative on the NSEDC board, voters will also decide who will fill two seats on the city council for the next three years.

For Nome City Council Seat C, two candidates are vying for the three-year term: incumbent Randy Pomeranz and challenger Lew Tobin.

Tobin is a longtime Nome resident but first-time office seeker, and a member of Nome Rotary. He recently retired as Kawerak’s Vocational Training Specialist.

Tobin said the world is turning to the Arctic, and he wants to help shape the pivotal years to come.

“I think it’s going to be a struggle, and I want to be a part of helping build our awareness of the Arctic, what Nome has to offer, even the new museum and the tourists coming in,” he said. “Nome is about to experience quite a burst. The state … is in a big financial problem, and I’m not sure we’ll get much support from them. But everything else looks really positive, and I hope to make this as positive a thing as possible and to be able to work with the rest of the country and the rest of the city so that everybody benefits.”

Randy Pomeranz is the Seat C incumbent. He’s been on the city council for 15 years and is seeking his sixth term. Pomeranz said the past decade and a half has seen “community unity” manifested in the progress of the Richard Foster Building (the “new musuem” Tobin alluded to). He said he also wants to focus on Nome’s port, as well as the cost of living.

“Nome is right on the edge of possibly making some big steps forward with the deep draft port,’ Pomeranz said. “We don’t want to burden the taxpayers with another bill, so yeah, we are looking at other partnerships to get out costs down.”

Pomeranz said he wants to focus on Nome’s high living costs should he win another term. “Some of the other things we’d like to see are, keep our property taxes down for people in town, so people aren’t moving out, and trying to keep the town affordable to live in.”

Voters go to the polls in just one week. Local elections happen statewide on Tuesday, Oct. 6.