Mahan Doesn’t Want to Carry Dad’s Political Baggage

During the interview, Monty Mahan, who on Tuesday formalized is candidacy for South Kitsap Commissioner, joked that the “Kitsap Sun must have a spell-checker that says, ‘Monty-Mahan-son-of-former-South-Kitsap-Commissioner-Bill-Mahan.'”

At 50, he said, one would think he could step out from under his father’s shadow.

There’s no doubt growing up in a politically active family had an influence on Mahan, who has been considering a run for commissioner for, oh, about 20 years. It’s always been a bit of an assumption in his family and elsewhere that Mahan would follow in his father’s footsteps. Now, he said, the time feels right.

But speaking of timing, South Kitsap citizens are still smarting from the Port of Bremerton’s 150 percent tax hike to pay for the Bremerton Marina. The increase, which added 45 cents of tax per $1,000 in assessed value on properties within the port district, caught people within the district (many of whom live in SK) by surprise. Port Commissioner Bill Mahan is on the board that authorized the tax in 2006. His fellow commissioner Mary Ann Huntington was voted out of office in 2007 and replaced by Larry Stokes, who ran on an anti-tax platform.

Mahan the younger has heard plenty about it and expects more as the campaign continues. In fact the first two comments on the story up on the Web site now are between Mahan and a reader on this very topic.

During our interview, Mahan said he wants to politically distance himself from his dad. He called back to clarify that statement, saying, “I’m not ashamed of him. He’s Dad. I’m proud of him. … But at 50, I’m kind of thinking, I’m just ‘Monty.'”

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