Tag Archives: jay sweeney

Citizens’ Task Force searches for answers, consensus

The expanded Sitka Public Library will open on February 1. Critics of government spending continue to point to major capital projects such as the library and the Performing Arts Center as being beyond Sitka's means to maintain. (KCAW photo/Bill Foster)Sitka is looking to its residents for answers about how to best raise revenues and decrease spending. With their first report duein 3 weeks, the Citizens’ Task Force has some way to go before reaching consensus.

Citizens’ Task Force balances revenues, spending, growth

Citizens' Task Force chair Rob Allen, and Sitka chief administrative officer Jay Sweeney, outline the role of the CTF, and put the group's challenges into context. They describe Sitka as one of the most comprehensively-governed communities in Alaska. Downloadable audio.

Without new transformer, massive blackout on horizon

IMG_5074Deferred maintenance, particularly at the Marine Street Substation, has prompted the department the city to fast track a solution. Electric Department Director Bryan Bertacchi has a plan, but it will take the money and the political will of the Assembly to pull it off.

Reduced summer ferry schedule concerns Assembly

Screen Shot 2015-10-15 at 9.08.37 PMBeyond wrapping up the municipal election, the Assembly’s meeting on Tuesday (10-13-15) night was light on local business. There was however, plenty to discuss about the state - from reduced ferry service to funding prospects.

Sitka’s disaster response bills approach half-million mark

Sitka has spent almost a half-million dollars since August on emergency cleanup, and is counting on having most of that reimbursed by the state.

Sitka assembly says no to non-profit sales taxes

A proposal to tax some fundraising activities of Sitka’s non-profits was voted down by the assembly Tuesday night (8-11-15). But the city will be looking for ways to shore up compliance for non-profits who should be paying taxes -- but don’t.

Sitka Budget: City says utility rates must rise

This chart compares current monthly utility costs with two proposals before the Sitka Assembly. Option 1 reflects Ordinance 15-23, which would raise electric rates for an average Sitka household by about 6% this year. Option 2 reflects Ordinance 15-17, which would raise electric rates by about 23%. Both options include a 10% increase in water rates, a 4.9% increase in wastewater rates, and a 13% increase in solid waste rates. (Rachel Waldholz/KCAW)It's not just electric rates - Sitka is also proposing increases in water, sewer and garbage rates. KCAW's Rachel Waldholz is tracking the city budget. She sat down with News Director Robert Woolsey to break down the numbers.

Despite voting down rate hike, Assembly says rates will rise

Workers pouring cement at the Blue Lake dam in June, 2014 (KCAW photo/Rachel Waldholz)The Sitka Assembly voted down a proposed electric rate increase at its meeting Tuesday night. But that doesn’t mean rates aren’t going up. The real question isn’t whether rates will rise, but by how much. And city staff have found some creative ways to soften the impact.

Sitka School District lays out potential cuts

Superintendent Mary Wegner (far right) lays out proposals for cutting the Sitka School District budget. The district faces a shorfall of up to $2.7-million. (Rachel Waldholz/KCAW) The Sitka School District is facing a shortfall of up to $2.7-million for the upcoming school year. Superintendent Mary Wegner laid out a range of options, from ending the community schools program to laying off as many as nine teachers.

Activities at risk as Sitka’s school budget hits deficit ‘wall’?

Sitka High freshman David Wilcox blazes across the finish line Saturday morning (9-28-13). Faced with its largest projected budget deficit in recent memory, the Sitka School Board may consider dramatic cuts to sports and activities programs in 2016. (KCAW photo/Robert Woolsey)The Sitka School Board -- as usual -- is entering its annual budget cycle facing a significant deficit. But unlike past years, there’s no silver bullet from either the state or federal governments that’s likely to save the day.