Senior housing, on-site marijuana to highlight Assembly agenda

    Juneau, Alaska (KINY) - A tax abatement to spur construction of senior housing, on-site consumption of marijuana and employee contract agreements highlight the Assembly's regular meeting agenda Monday evening.

    City Manager Rorie Watt talked about those matters on Action Line.  He said the local government has been working on the issue for a while, but no one's come forward to develop the project.  Watt said the threshold for such a project includes 15 or more units.  The proposal calls for exempting the mill rate above 2 point 65, about eight mills or 75 to  80 percent of the property tax, for 12 years.    "It kind of mirrors what Anchorage did and we're hoping that a little sweetener on the property tax will help nudge development of some facilities for our seniors."

    Watt called the ordinance addressing the on-site consumption of marijuana "a little tricky."   "In some sense, we're pioneering some new ground," he said.  "Not that many places, I'm not sure if any, are allowing on-site in the country.  This would allow on-site consumption outside."  Outside is stipulated since the city and borough has an indoor clean air ordinance on the books aimed at protecting people from the effects of second-hand smoke.

    Watt explained that a vendor would still have to adhere to state licensing requirements.

    The contract agreements up for ratification are with the Marine Engineers Beneficial Association which represents the general government unit and members of the police department represented by the Public Safety Employees Association. Both are three-year contracts.

    The MEBA pack calls for a two percent pay hike in the first year and one percent in years two and three.  The PSEA contract provides for additional funding with an aim at impacting new officers.

    Another resolution addresses non-represented employees which treat them like MEBA members.  "We have similar people doing similar work and it's hard not to do that," Watt said.  

    An appropriation ordinance up for action addresses local match funding for airport terminal construction which addresses the renovation of the north terminal.  

    The Assembly will be updated on its annexation filing with the State's Local Boundary Commission.   Watt said the commission has provided comments to their draft petition.  The next step is to submit a petition for formal review.

    Ordinances up for introduction deal with how to pay for renovation work at Centennial Hall, CBJ financial participation in a new arts and culture center and future water and sewer rate increases.

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

    The Human Resources Committee meets at 6 p.m.  It will listen to the annual report from the Juneau Commission on Sustainability and the reappointment of three incumbents.


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