Ketchikan’s city council will hold its first in-person meeting since mid-March this Thursday. The meeting will be held in the Ted Ferry Civic Center to allow for social distancing to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
At its last meeting, the council deferred consideration of a request by American Cruise Line, Inc. to dock a small cruise ship in Ketchikan June 22 and 30, pending further discussion between Southeast port communities about protocols for small vessels to return amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Port and Harbors Director Steve Corporon wrote in a memo that no resolution was reached among other port communities, but many expressed reservations about resuming cruises. City Manager Karl Amylon recommends that the city continue to work with Southeast communities and the Alaska Municipal League to develop a mutually agreed upon set of protocols.
In other business, the council will consider a resolution accepting approximately $12.3 million in coronavirus relief funds from the state. The grant funds can be used to provide economic support to the community and reimburse the city for expenditures incurred due to the pandemic.
The council proposes declaring July 11 as a Sales Tax Holiday. Gov. Mike Dunleavy announced distribution of the 2020 Alaska Permanent Fund Dividend would begin July 1st and the City and Borough in the past have adopted a sales tax holiday around the time of PFD distribution. The city traditionally has adopted a sales tax holiday on dates declared by the Borough Assembly.
The assembly is slated to approve its sales tax holiday at its June 8th meeting.
The city council Thursday also is scheduled to meet in executive session to review proposals for redevelopment of the Port of Ketchikan. No additional information was provided.
The regular meeting of the Ketchikan City Council begins at 7 p.m. Thursday at the Ted Ferry Civic Center. Regularly scheduled council meetings will be held at that location until further notice. It will also be streamed at the city’s website and broadcast on local cable channels.