A former youth detention facility has been renovated and is nearly ready to open its doors as a shelter for survivors of domestic abuse and sexual assault. Ketchikan’s City Council is scheduled Thursday to finalize the transfer of the facility to Women in Safe Homes, or WISH.
If the City Council gives final approval to the transfer Thursday, WISH says it plans to hold an open house Saturday. The new shelter for survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence would open in late November.
Rep. Dan Ortiz is scheduled to present a citation from the Alaska Legislature on Thursday to honor WISH. The legislative honor calls out executive director Agnes Moran’s efforts to secure a $700,000 grant that funded renovations to the former Ketchikan Regional Youth Facility, which closed in 2016.
Ortiz is also scheduled to present legislative citations honoring two former senior city officials: former Finance Director Bob Newell and former Ports and Harbors Director Steve Corporon. Both retired last year after lengthy careers in public service.
In other business, the Ketchikan City Council will consider canceling a state loan from the Department of Environmental Conservation to help finance a new sewer main on Schoenbar Road. The move comes after the City Council voted unanimously to spend $7 million to replace a raw water transmission line in that area earlier this month. That left too little money to replace the water and sewer lines together, and the public works director says in a memo that it doesn’t make financial sense to replace the sewer main without also replacing the water main.
Finally, the City Council is set to discuss how the city can help get the word out about resources available to help combat addiction. Advocates say more than a dozen people have died of drug overdoses this year in Ketchikan.
Thursday’s Ketchikan City Council meeting gets going at 7 p.m. The full agenda is available online, and the meeting is broadcast on local cable channels and livestreamed at the city’s website. Members of the public have a chance to weigh in at the beginning of the meeting.