There aren’t any Kodiak Island Borough Assembly or Kodiak City Council meetings this week, but that doesn’t mean a week off for local government.
The city and borough clerks and members of both the elected bodies flew to Anchorage this week to attend the annual government conference of the Alaska Municipal League.
AML consists of municipal representatives from across the state and it gives members of local government in rural areas a chance to meet, confer, and plan. It’s no surprise that the budget will be the subject of many of the conversations.
Last week at the City Council regular meeting, City Mayor Pat Branson commented that AML is helpful in both keeping representatives on the same page and making progress on issues of concern to Alaskans.
“I think it’s most important especially now where we have a number of new legislators who don’t know about the ferry system or Kodiak, and hopefully we’ll be working on a fiscal plan and revenue sharing and all of the policies that are being set by AML that affects all the communities across the state.”
The city council and the borough assembly have both signed off on resolutions that will come before AML. One is a resolution asking the governor and legislature to limit cuts they make to fisheries, and to furthermore restore revenue they gather via taxes and fees. On the borough side, the assembly has already gone over a series of AML resolutions that require votes from government bodies across the state. One, which the assembly voted down, would have prevented derelict vessels through extra charges to the vessel owners.
Kodiak leaders will be in Anchorage for AML meetings all this week, and at different times. AML provides a conference for local mayors, training for new members of elected bodies, and a variety of other seminars. Councilmen John Whiddon and Rich Walker stepped up for the opportunity. From the borough side, Assemblymen Kyle Crow, Matt Van Daele, Scott Smiley, and Dave Townsend are all participating.
The AML conference continues until Friday.