Funding of Tourism Manager tops Assembly agenda

    Juneau, Alaska (KINY) - The Juneau Assembly will be asked to approve a $150,000 appropriation to fund the position of Tourism Manager  as it establishes a centralized tourism management plan.

    The Mayor’s Visitor Industry Task Force recommended formation of the plan and the hiring of a manager to oversee it.

    Members will follow up on a recommendation from taken up by a special meeting of the Assembly last week that property taxpayers be allowed to pay the levy in two installments.

    Manager Rorie Watt writes in his report to the Assembly that a number of property owners are still recovering from the impacts of COVID-19 and could benefit from being able to pay in that fashion  In addition, he explained that the Board of Equalization has a significant number of commercial property appeals that may not be resolved before September 30 which is the current deadline for paying the full tax.

    The ordinance would require that 80% of property taxes and special assessment be paid by September 30 with the 20% balance due by December 31.

    Taxpayers who have automatic mortgage payments or prearranged ACH or automated clearing house direct debit can still pay the full tax amount by September 30.    

    There are several other ordinances up for public hearing and action.   One would remove the minimum lot depth requirement from the land code.  The manager explains that the requirement has created unnecessary prohibitions on properties, especially infill subdivisions that otherwise need a variance.  The minimum lot width and size requirements would continue to be in place for future subdivisions, according to the manager.

    Another ordinance would amend the land use code to extend the sunset dates for alternative development overlay districts.  The purpose of the district, according to Watt, is to provide adequate minimum standards and procedures for the construction of new residential buildings and the expansion, restoration , or repair of existing buildings.  Watt explains that the extension provides necessary time for the final review and adoption of new zoning for downtown neighborhoods.

    The meeting is scheduled to convene at 7 p,.m. Monday.

    The Human Resources Committee meets earlier beginning at 6 p.m.  to take up annual reports from Historic Resources Advisory Committee, the Juneau Commission on Sustainability, and the Youth Activities Board.

    The panel will  also take up appointments to two public seats to the Youth Activities Board .  An appointment to the Local Emergency Planning Committee is also on the agenda.

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