Archipelago Project back before Assembly

    Juneau, Alaska (KINY) - Topping Monday night's Assembly agenda are ordinances related to the Archipelago Project that calls for construction of the downtown staging area and deck over project to support activities generated by cruise ship passengers.

    Action on the ordinances was delayed earlier this month in part because of the use of marine passenger fees to fund a portion of the $23 Million price tag for the project.

    One authorizes the manager to execute a purchase and sale agreement with Archipelago Properties for the purchase of lots in the area.  Another appropriates $11 Million to help fund construction.  Also up for action is approval of a bid award to fund the procurement of materials for the project.

    The Assembly asked Manager Rorie Watt to oversee the contract talks with the property owner.  He'll brief the Assembly tonight, according to Mayor Beth Weldon who was a guest on Action Line Friday.

    An ordinance to fund the final design, permitting, bidding, and construction of a fish cleaning station at Amalga Harbor is up for a public hearing and action.  The project is funded with a $230,000 grant from the Alaska Department of Fish and Game.  

    The mayor said there's concern about congestion there as boats are delayed from docking because of fish cleaning activity.  So Fish and Game wants the city to extend the dock to including additional fish cleaning stations to ease the congestion, according to the mayor.

    The Assembly's Public Works and Facilities Committee took up the ordinance at its meeting January 14 and recommended to the full body to postpone consideration to allow for additional public comment.  As a result, Manager Rorie Watt is recommending  the Assembly take public  testimony tonight and then refer the ordinance back to the committee to allow staff more time to facilitate the public process.

    Another measure up for a hearing and action  makes changes to the code governing the  Aquatics Board.  Among other things it permanently removes sunset provisions and  increases  the board's membership from 7 to 9.

    There's an ordinance up for action that  appropriates up to $30,000 for the Cold Weather Emergency Shelter in the former State Public Safety Building on Whittier Street.  That amount is more than last year's amount of $16,425 but still $6,000 short of what's needed.  The mayor said the Housing Office will be looking at how to address the shortfall.

    The grant comes from the Alaska Mental Health Trust Authority.

    The body will also be asked to approve a funding measure that will allow Capital Transit to replace a 35 foot diesel powered bus with an electric bus.

    The grant of over $407,000 from the federal government is conveyed to the local government via the Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities.    The grant requires a local match of just over $72,000.  That amount will be combined with $397,337 that remains from a previous grant.  That grant required a local match of $99,335.  So the mayor said  there's over $976,000 to fund the new bus.

    The mayor said a grant for a second electric bus has been delayed due to the long federal government shutdown

    Another funding measure appropriates an Alaska Mental Health Trust Authority grant of nearly $53,000 to partially fund the Housing and Homelessness Services Coordinator position.

    An ordinance appropriating up to $200,000 for a new visitor information kiosk.  The Assembly will be asked to approve a bid award to Island Contractors, Incorporated, for construction of the kiosk at nearly $164,000.

    The Assembly meeting is scheduled to convene at 7 p.m. in Assembly Chambers at City Hall.


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