Because the Assembly formally meets about once every other two weeks (plus work sessions and committee meetings) some might wonder how we spend our time outside of those gatherings. Here’s a sampler drawn from portions of my calendar:
More on the DID:
Those of you who read my post, “Downtown dust-up,” likely saw the comment from Frank M, who was concerned about his condo being within the proposed new boundaries of the Downtown Improvement District. I responded to Frank via e-mail and learned that he spends more than half the year Outside and therefore does not qualify for the “owner occupancy” exemption for property taxes (both the $20k deduction in value and the waiver of DID assessment).
Subsequent to that exchange I met with a gentleman who informed me he owns two units in the same building, is a partial-owner of two other units in the same building and rents yet another. Because none of those units are owner-occupied none will qualify for the assessment waiver and he is concerned. In a somewhat ironic twist, this gentleman works for a building owner who also has a property in the expanded DID and supports the expansion.
The return of the Mountain View library:
It’s been about 20 years since the Mountain View library closed but, thanks to incredible efforts by the private and public sectors, a new branch recently opened. A ribbon-cutting ceremony is slated for this Saturday, September 25, at 10:30 am and I’m looking forward to the festivities!
Late (or early morning) dining:
Another neighborhood issue revolves around the Kodiak Bar & Grill (formerly the Kodiak Kafe), which stays open until about five each morning. Alcohol service ends, as proscribed by local law, at 2:30 am on weeknights and 3 am on weekends, but food service and entertainment continue thereafter. Because this is the only location in the downtown area with such service it often attracts a crowd, and not necessarily a crowd of which your mother would approve. Unsurprisingly, the situation has come to the attention of our local constabulary and they’ve provided the Kodiak’s owners with some suggestions to improve public safety. Some of the exchanges between the police, patrons, and Kodiak owners & staff haven’t gone as smoothly as possible so I’ve met with various parties to offer a little perspective.
I recently attended a meeting that included a wide-ranging discussion with representatives of Catholic Social Services, which operates the Brother Francis Shelter. The collection of social services in the surrounding area, including the Anchorage Jail and sleep-off center, are a matter of neighborhood concern. Parts of the discussion revolved around how BFS could work to mitigate neighborhood impacts, and we also discussed how policies of the Department of Corrections might be altered to further address neighborhood issues.
I have had or will soon have meetings regarding our local tourism marketing budget, transportation planning, our local United Way and a series of work sessions on topics from wind power to departmental reorganization. All in all, a series of interesting subjects to address!
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