Prayer ordinance submitted to Ketchikan Assembly

Two Ketchikan Gateway Borough Assembly members have introduced an ordinance that would add a prayer to every regular Borough Assembly meeting.

Glen Thompson and Agnes Moran submitted identical agenda statements requesting the ordinance. They cite a 2014 U.S. Supreme Court decision upholding the practice of prayer before a public meeting.

They also note that the Alaska State Legislature begins its work days with invocations, as do other Alaska municipal bodies. Moran and Thompson write that the Ketchikan Ministerial Association is in favor of the proposed ordinance, and its members could provide prayers for Assembly meetings on a rotating basis.

Ordinances must be approved in two readings. Monday’s would be the first. If approved for introduction, the Assembly would schedule a public hearing on the issue for its next regular meeting.

Also on Monday, the Assembly will consider a resolution accepting about $500,000 from the State of Alaska to help offset operating and maintenance costs at Ketchikan International Airport.

In his report to the Assembly, Borough Manager Dan Bockhorst asked for direction regarding a request for borough support of a Saxman project. Saxman officials want the state to reconsider leasing part of the Saxman Seaport for a ferry terminal that would serve the day ferry to Metlakatla.

Monday’s Assembly meeting starts at 5:30 p.m. in Assembly chambers at the White Cliff building. Public comment will be heard at the start of the meeting.

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