Peninsula's coast could get high-tech focus

Borough's acceptance of grant is step for future erosion studies

Posted: Monday, November 18, 2002

Using high-tech imaging gear, the Kenai Peninsula Borough soon could make detailed topographic maps of the borough's eroding shoreline from Anchor Point to Kachemak Bay, a necessary step for future erosion studies.

An ordinance to be introduced at Tuesday's meeting of the borough assembly would accept an $80,000 grant from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

It will be used to determine bathymetric and shoreline change trends using digital elevation models, according to the borough.

The cutting-edge remote sensing technology promises to produce an accurate model and a method for predicting short- and long-term shoreline evolution in a region that has experienced significant erosion.

Most of the money will pay for Light Detection and Ranging, or LIDAR, imagery.

In principle, it acts like radar, bouncing light off the shoreline and reading the scattered return to analyze properties of the target.

When combined with the differential Global Positioning System, it will produce a high-resolution topo map of the area, Borough Planner Kevin Williamson said in a memo to the assembly.

A hearing on Ordinance 2002-19-24 is scheduled for Jan. 7.

The assembly also will introduce Ordinance 2002-19-25, accepting and appropriating $73,550 in state funds from the Alaska Department of Community and Economic Development for the Cook Inlet Salmon Branding Program.

The money will help offset appropriations from the borough to the program made earlier.

In other business, the assembly will hold a hearing on proposed revisions of the borough sales tax code.

Another hearing on the revisions is planned for Dec. 10.

It also will hold a hearing on the appropriation of $400,000 in hospital plant expansion and replacement funds to Central Peninsula General Hospital.

A resolution appointing members of the assembly to various nonborough committees and boards also will be addressed.

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