Kenai will talk land use, projects

Land use; recruitment for boards, commissions and committees; and city projects are all on the table for Kenai city council’s Wednesday night meeting.

Kenai’s capital improvements list is up for approval at the meeting. The list, which was drafted in a work session in October, outlines the city’s priorities in state and federal funding for the next fiscal year. That year begins July 1, but the Legislature will begin discussing state funding in January.

Topping the list are continuing projects that take the first, second and fifth slots: paving and improvements to city streets, the next phase of upgrading the water transmission system, and the second phase of the Kenai Industrial Park.

Also included are funding to construct a new heavy machine shop — the third priority — and funding to install a turf football and soccer field at Kenai Central High School — the fourth item.

Rounding out the list are funding for fish cleaning stations and other capital improvements to support the personal use fishery, and wastewater treatment plant upgrades.

Also included on Wednesday’s agenda are two land-use related issues. A resolution up for a vote would allow the city manager to execute a lease with Buccaneer Alaska for airport land that is outside the airport reserve. According to supporting documents, Buccaneer would use that land for a facility needed to bring its gas to market. The company is already in the process of constructing a pipeline as part of that effort.

The other land-use issue is an ordinance that would rezone a parcel in the Central View Subdivision, near Bridge Access Road, from rural residential to heavy industrial. City Manager Rick Koch owns that parcel. The rezone ordinance was brought forward by the planning and zoning commission after he applied to that body for the rezone.

The council will also discuss an ordinance and a substitute version that outline a procedure for nominating citizens to serve on Kenai’s boards, commissions and committees. The original version, brought forward by councilmen Terry Bookey and Bob Molloy, deals specifically with the planning and zoning commission and creates an application period for each vacancy. The substitute, brought forward by Mayor Pat Porter, addresses that commission and all other advisory bodies.

The council will also be asked to approve ordinances that accept funding for a host of projects, including a Kenai Spur Highway pedestrian pathway and improvements at city hall, among others.

The council meets at 7 p.m. Wednesday at City Hall. Public testimony will be taken.

Molly Dischner can be reached at molly.dischner@peninsulaclarion.com.

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