Borough Mayor Dave Carey said this week that come January he would name members to an informal group to work on water issues.
It would be the first of what may be several Mayor's Ad-Hoc Groups, or MAGs, meant to increase public involvement in borough deliberations on various issues.
"I've been involved with governments for quite a while," he said in an interview Tuesday. "Sometimes after you pass something, the public is rarely involved in measuring the effectiveness of programs -- to compare whether implementation actually does what the intent was."
The borough, he said, deals with numerous water quality and water-centered environmental matters, and the new MAG-W panel would be engaged in those issues.
"The citizens that volunteer to serve on the MAG-W will work on different subcommittees dealing with KRSMA legislation regarding the Kenai River, the Fish Habitat Partnership plan, the listing of the Cook Inlet Beluga Whale as an endangered species, and the borough's Kenai River 50-foot overlay district," he said Tuesday.
Mayor Carey is president of the KRSMA advisory board, and said recently he would remain so until January unless replaced by an appointee of the Mayor of Soldotna. Carey's seat is the Soldotna seat on the board.
"During my time on KRSMA, the largest complaint was that he borough does not enforce the 50-foot overlay," he said, referring to regulations designed to protect the river shoreline and prevent destruction of riparian zones.
The search is on, he said, for people who might be interested in participating on the new MAG-W panel. Carey envisions the panel answering directly to him and delivering a report on various water matters at the end of each quarter.
"I don't perceive a budget" for the new panel, he said, adding that any expenses would likely come out of the mayor's budget.
Hal Spence can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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