Resolving Juneau’s solid waste problems tops the list of the Assembly’s goals for the next year.
In a 3 and a half hour retreat Wednesday morning, the nine-member panel prioritized a list of 16 issues the city and borough should tackle.
Some, like housing, economic development, and parking, have been on previous Assembly’s lists.
Mayor Merrill Sanford says the key is moving them off the list and into reality.
“Maybe we can get caught up on a few here and get beyond and get into new goals, you know, starting next year. But this gives us a priority list to go by,” Sanford says.
During the meeting, Assembly member Randy Wanamaker reminded his colleagues that the fewer goals the better because so many are already on the list.
A number of the issues considered priorities are in progress, including measures for creating more housing in Juneau.
- Heli-skiing has long been a controversial topic in Haines. The interests of the industry often clash with people who live near heliports and don’t want the noise disturbing their peace and quiet. But there’s another group that’s impacted by helicopter noise: mountain goats.
- In the Northwest Arctic, caribou hunting has been contentious for years. Alaska’s largest herd continues to decline while tensions have emerged between rural subsistence users and outside hunters.
- From the Aleutian island of Akutan to the arctic village of Kiana, 13 communities have been crowned champions of a rural energy competition. The U.S. Department of Energy recently announced that it will help these communities cut their energy use by 15 percent by training local utility providers.
- It’s costing 14 percent more to take the ferry to and from the Lower 48. The higher fare is part of another round of tariff increases aimed at boosting income and equalizing rates across all routes.