UPDATE: Assembly approves bonds for school repairs, Sand Lake drainage

Published: Jan. 29, 2019 at 4:28 PM AKST
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Update: Tuesday 10:30 p.m.

The Anchorage Assembly voted unanimously Tuesday evening to include the community of Sand Lake's request to add neighborhoods with historically poor drainage areas to the 2019 Anchorage Roads and Drainage Service Areas Bond. The Sand Lake Community Council asked that funding to fix their poor drainage areas be added to the April ballots, after a number of residential homes suffered major damage from the earthquake. But the Municipality of Anchorage says the earthquake only exacerbated an existing problem, and was not solely responsible for the damage.

Municipal Manager Bill Falsey said the Municipality hired a geotechnical engineer to survey the soil beneath the damaged homes. "I have to tell you that we received a draft of the report from our geotechnical engineer, who's primary conclusion was as follows: We believe the primary cause of seismically induced settlement in the area is likely the presence of poor quality and low density fill materials under the building foundation."

Update: Tuesday, 7:40 p.m.

The Anchorage Assembly voted unanimously Tuesday evening to approve a $4 million bond extension for capital improvements to Anchorage School District schools. The bond total is now $59,113,000. ASD officials asked for the additional bond proposal to be added to the April ballot to pay for school repairs after the November 30th earthquake.

After the vote, Anchorage School Board president Starr Marsett said "I want to express my appreciation to the Assembly for their continued support of ASD in voting unanimously for the bond, including the additional $4-million for our hardest-hit schools in Eagle River and Chugiak by the earthquake on November 30th."

Original Story

Tuesday is a big night at the Anchorage Assembly Chambers, as the Assembly finalizes the ballots proposals for the April election.

Several bonds designed to cover repairs from earthquake damage will hit the Assembly floor.

So, if you have an opinion on the $4 million extension of General Obligation Bonds to pay costs of improvements for the Anchorage School District; or on

-- tonight’s the night for public testimony at the Assembly Chambers.

“This is the last chance. We don’t have a meeting notice for tomorrow,” Assemblyman Christopher Constant said. “And you have to have the items concluded from our efforts by January. So yes, this is it, and if you have an interest in what’s on the bond or what shouldn’t be on the bond, you should come testify tonight.”

A big question tagged to these bonds is what happens once they’re spent, and whether the state receives funding from Gov. Dunleavy’s request for Presidential Major Disaster Assistance?

“What I’ve been told is that the bond funds will be paid back early if the feds come back with money,” Constant said. “But it’s a really smart and due diligence policy for us to make sure we’re taking care of ourselves. So the time is now.”

Tonight's Assembly meeting begins at 6 p.m. in the Assembly Chambers at the Anchorage Loussac Library.

We will update this story with information from the Assembly Meeting.