Thane Election Center proposal to be taken up Monday

    Photo Courtesy of CBJ.

    Juneau, Alaska (KINY) - The Juneau Assembly will be presented at it's regular assembly meeting on Monday an appropriation ordinance for housing an elections center in a portion of the CBJ owned Thane warehouse.

    The assembly committee of the whole earlier in the month passed a motion to have staff draft such an ordinance for purchasing the equipment needed for the facility, as well as the remodeling, for $700,000 in total.

    City Engineering & Public Works Director, Katie Koester, spoke on the proposal.

    "The proposal is really to establish an elections center, so a location here in Juneau where ballots can be processed, regardless of the type of election it is, it would be a center that is highly secure open to the public, that has the equipment necessary to securely and safely count ballots."

    Koester said the facility needs to be very secure, a big enough space for operations, and accessible to the public so people can view ballot counting.

    She said though that another requirement was the voting machines need to be kept in place.

    "Because they're quite complicated to calibrate correctly, and so that limited a lot of the spaces we looked at. The libraries, we looked at multiple different CBJ facilities, and needing it to be in a place where the equipment couldn't be moved, kind of every time there was an election is what landed on the Thane warehouse being the preferred alternative, a big open base that can house this equipment."

    Other locations included the former police substation office at city hall; the meeting rooms at the Douglas and Valley Libraries; Mt. Jumbo Gym; and the second-floor conference room at city hall.

    If passed at the August 23rd regular meeting, the city's proposal outlines that the facility would be ready in time for the October 2022 election

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