Ketchikan’s City Council will meet 7 p.m. Thursday in the Ted Ferry Civic Center. (KRBD file photo)


Ketchikan’s City Council is set to approve on Thursday a new lease with the nonprofit that’s operated city-owned PeaceHealth Hospital for decades. The agreement got its first reading last month

The lease would begin October 1 of this year and last at least 20 years. It replaces an original agreement inked in 1981 and later extended — and this new one is an upgrade, Council Member Dave Kiffer said last meeting.  

“We had 70 years of a lease that really had no teeth in it,” he said. “And now finally, after some pretty significant work…we have a lease that actually says something and does something.”

The city council is also set to vote on the establishment of a Ketchikan Healthcare Advisory Committee, which will provide oversight of the lease agreement and take public input. 

Also at this Thursday’s meeting, the council will consider the transfer of $55,000 to the Ketchikan Police Department. That would pay for specialized and required training, as well as operating supplies, according to the memorandum. The money would come out of the U.S. Marshals property seizure fund. 

With the turnover of tenured and trained officers, multiple trainers need to be certified as soon as possible, Acting Deputy Chief Andrew Berntson tells the city council in a memo. He prepared a list of what training and equipment the funds would be used for — that includes two Taser instructors, two field training officers, vehicle radars and tactical entry equipment.

In other news, Fire Chief Abner Hoage has indicated he plans to retire after he sells his house in Ketchikan. There’s no set date on that, he told the City manager’s office in his notification, but he expects to provide 30-60 day’s notice. 

“I have been with the City of Ketchikan for almost seven years and have genuinely enjoyed my time serving as Fire Chief and Emergency Manager,” he wrote in the notification. “…My decision to retire is based solely on personal reasons.”

There’s also some new appointments to be considered on the Library Advisory Board and Port and Harbors Advisory Board. 

Ketchikan’s City Council meets at 7 p.m. Thursday in the Ted Ferry Civic Center. Members of the public can offer comments at the beginning of the meeting. The city live-streams the proceedings on local cable channels, social media and the city’s website.