4-15-2014 Borough Assembly Report
By Sue McClure
This was our annual meeting in Seward, which was a nice treat for me and seemed to be enjoyable for the rest of the assembly and other borough folks who came over. Our meeting lasted about 1½ hours, which was time enough for them all to drive back home afterwards.
At our regular meeting, there were no presentations, and only a few public comments, mostly from Seward Bear Creek Flood Service Area Board members. In his report, both during committee meetings and at the regular meeting, Mayor Navarre stated that the budget will be presented at our May 6 meeting, and that he is anticipating a $400,000 surplus this year. He is participating in the Medicaid advisory group with the State, is monitoring the capital budget and may return to Juneau in that regard, discussed the LNG mayor’s group which is concerned with the impact on municipal taxes of an LNG pipeline project, commented that Conoco Philips is reopening their Nikiski plant, and that talks are moving forward on the North Road extension.
We had only two ordinances up for public hearing, with no public comments on either at the meeting. Ordinance 2013-19-33 redirected previously appropriated funds for South Peninsula Hospital from HVAC to oxygen generators, and was approved by unanimous consent. The other, Ordinance 2014-11, Smith Substitute, was amended and discussed, postponement voted down by a 5-4 vote, and then ultimately defeated by a 5-4 vote. This would have raised assembly members’ compensation from $400 to $560 per month, effective in October 2016. Then Assembly member Johnson moved for reconsideration. So at the next meeting, we will vote on whether or not to reconsider it, but without additional public hearing.
We also approved several resolutions on the consent agenda, and moved one ordinance for public hearing on 5-6. This would accept and appropriate $32,701.84 from the State to purchase mobile radios for Bear Creek Fire and extrication equipment for the Anchor Point Fire Service Area.
We also amended the 2014 meeting schedule to add one meeting, July 22, and delete one, August 19. The latter is the state primary election date.
At our next meeting, May 6, we have four other ordinances up for public hearing. Ordinance 2013-19-34 would appropriate $1.37 million from school revenue capital project funds for safety and security improvements for schools. Ordinance 2014-13 would amend code to provide that we may waive deadlines for senior or disabled veteran property tax exemption applications by resolution rather than by ordinance.
As always, I may be reached at 224-6784 or email@example.com. The borough’s website is www.borough.kenai.ak.us, and the Seward Annex office and the Flood Board office, both in the Sea View Plaza, are great sources of information.