State Public Safety Commissioner Amada Price resigned Friday at the request of Gov. Mike Duneavy. The governor’s office did not state a reason for the change but Price said the governor was unhappy with her demotion of Doug Massie, who heads the Alaska Wildlife Troopers, a part of the State Trooper organization under Price.
Massie had worked in the wildlife troopers unit before Dunleavy promoted him to head the group. Price demoted Massie for administrative reasons, she told the Anchorge Daily News.
The governor was also unhappy with a plan by Price to consolidate 911 call centers for trooper dispatches. A new call center would be built in Palmer to replace centers now in Wasilla, Kenai and Ketchikan.
It’s not unusual for governors to do cabinet-level shakeups mid-way in their terms particularly when it is connected with policy differences or disagreements on personnel matters, as this was.
Dunleavy’s cabinet has been stable in his first two years except for the resignations of Attorney General Kevin Clarkson over a sexual harassment issue that was followed by a resignation of Clarkson’s proposed replacement, state attorney Ed Sniffen, over an inappropriate relationship several years ago.
There have been shakeups in the governor’s office, however. After a turbulent first year for the governor Tuckerman Babcock, Dunleavy’s first Chief of Staff, was replaced by Ben Stevens. Donna Arduin, Duneavy’s first budget director, was replaced by Neil Steininger.