The Soldotna City Council skated through its monthly meeting Wednesday, passing several unanimous resolutions designed to improve the city's quality of life while keeping property taxes the same as last year.
The council acted on a previous motion to set the mill rate at 1.65 mills, the equivalent of $165 in yearly property taxes on a property valued at $100,000. The rate is the same as in previous years, but the council waited until Wednesday in order to give the public ample opportunity to comment on the tax. The resolution passed without discussion or objection.
Next on the council's agenda was approval of a resolution to add a landscaping beautification action plan to the city's Comprehensive Plan. The plan includes several goals for the city to strive for in order to achieve a more visually attractive city, including renovating existing storefronts, working with the state to create more attractive roadside landscapes and promoting new businesses.
City Manager Tom Boedeker said the plan came about through exhaustive work on the part of city officials and area business owners.
"We've come a long way in working with businesses on this," Boedeker said.
The council also approved a plan to begin work on a new skateboard park. Boedeker told the council that it was finally time to begin work on the long-anticipated project.
"If we're going to do this, we might as well get it done," was Boedeker's message to the council.
The council agreed, passing unanimously a plan to begin construction at Karen Street Park this summer.
The plan calls on the city to possibly provide between $28,000 and $35,000 for construction of the park, unless more private donors can be found.
The Soldotna Elks Club has already committed $60,000 to purchase equipment for the park.
Parks and Recreation Director Andrew Carmichael said city crews will begin slab dirt work and site preparation for the park soon.
"Hopefully Monday or Tuesday we'll start on the dirt work," he said.
Carmichael said Foster Construction has agreed to donate 625 cubic yards of fill material for the project.
In other business Wednesday, the council:
n Renewed its banking agreement with First National Bank of Alaska. Boedeker called the resolution a "housekeeping measure."
n Set public hearings for two city ordinances to be held June 26. The first, Ordinance 761, would amend the city's zoning code to establish general standards and number of units for townhouse development in a multifamily district. The second, Ordinance 762, would make supplemental adjustments and revise the 2002 budget.
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