Grant funds heading for borough

Posted: Tuesday, November 15, 2005

A lean agenda should make Tuesday’s meeting of the Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly a relatively short affair, though some important measures, including an ordinance accepting $460,000 in state schools grants, are expected to see action.

Ordinance 2005-19-31 authorizes Mayor John Williams to accept two grants totaling $460,00 from the Alaska Department of Community and Economic Development. The measure appropriates that money into two accounts — some $290,000 will cover machinery and equipment, while the remaining $170,000 will fund operating supplies.

In a memo to the assembly, borough Grants Manager Bonnie Golden said the funding would be limited to continuing existing programs and buying equipment to meet health and safety needs. The money will not be counted as part of the local funding effort for schools, an amount that is restricted by state and federal law.

“Because this is a state grant specifically designated in the bill authorizing the purchase of equipment, it will not be considered in the school district (funding) cap formula,” Golden said.

Tuesday’s agenda includes three resolutions that are expected to pass.

Resolution 2005-097 supports the borough Planning Department’s effort to obtain grant funding with which to improve Jacobs Ladder Drive, a platted borough right of way about 4.5 miles north of Captain Cook State Recreational Area, that the borough sees and an alternative access route to some 363 parcels of land in the Moose Point and Gray Cliffs subdivisions, as well as to 8,000 acres of public land in the Point Possession area.

The 4.5 miles of unconstructed North Kenai Road extension between the recreational area and Jacobs Ladder Drive, which has provided access to the area primarily by all-terrain vehicles and snowmachines, often is boggy and difficult to traverse.

The Borough Road Service Area provided for the clearing and improvement of sections of Jacobs Ladder Drive in 1997. However, currently conditions along the drive make it nearly unusable, leaving no public access from the beach to the North Road Extension, pipeline corridor, utility corridor or subdivisions in the area.

The borough is seeking $30,000 from the state to widen and improve approximately 1,200 feet of the trail. The resolution urges the Trails and Recreational Access of Alaska (TRAAK) Board and the Alaska Department of Natural Resources’ Division of Parks and Outdoor Recreation to fund the grant request.

Resolution 2005-098 would authorize the borough to accept seven late-filed senior citizen and disabled veteran exemption applications.

Resolution 2005-099 would confirm appointments of Grace Merkes of Sterling as sitting member and Margaret Gilman of Kenai as alternate on the Arctic Winter Games Host Society board.

In other business, the assembly is expected to approve the appointment of mayoral assistant Tim Navarre as administrative officer and General Services Director Richard Campbell as alternate administrative officer, authorizing them to act as mayor should Williams be absent or disabled.

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