The Ketchikan City Council will consider a resolution Thursday that would allow the city manager to work with Southeast Alaska Power Agency officials on documents allowing SEAPA to sell bonds for the Swan Lake hydroelectric dam expansion project.
The approximately $11.4 million in bonds also would pay off higher-interest bonds that the power agency currently holds. The move must be approved by the elected officials of SEAPA’s three member communities: Ketchikan, Petersburg and Wrangell.
Raising Swan Lake dam would increase the storage capacity at the lake, which would allow that lake to provide more electricity. Swan Lake is the primary power source for Ketchikan, and is connected by an intertie to SEAPA’s other hydroelectric facility at Tyee Lake. Tyee provides power to Wrangell and Petersburg.
Also Thursday, the Council will consider a motion to split the duties of the current Public Works Director/Engineering Manager position into two jobs. The two new jobs would be City Engineer and Public Works Director.
According to a memo from City Manager Karl Amylon, the new staffing would cost the city up to $350,000 the first year. Amylon notes in the memo that while splitting the positions would be beneficial, it would cost the city too much. He recommends maintaining the current position.
The city has had trouble filling that position, and Amylon also recommends that the city hire a recruitment firm to find a suitable candidate.
Thursday’s meeting starts at 7 p.m. in City Council chambers. Public comment will be heard at the start of the meeting.