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The Bridge
by Archie Inoncillo


June 30, 2004

You know, I don't know if I really would care for a bridge to the other islands. I thought it would be a good idea at first but then thought of how much work would be put into that. The key word for me was-- Work. I realize this bridge plan, if in effect, will take several years, possibly a decade. With the rate that our middle school is being remodeled, I'd say a nice decade. Like I said before, Work on one project at a time. What we need to care for most is the youth of this city.

I understand the bridge would create jobs, open a world of economy on the other side. But I don't want to have to pay for it in my lifetime when I probably won't be able to enjoy it, and I know I probably won't because I might as well be elsewhere. Instead of having to pay for a bridge I might never be able to drive on in my young life, I could be down south living it up driving on the highways that are already there.

Ketchikan was not built for bridging that gap between islands. I know they have that bridge between Juneau and Douglas and between Edgecumbe and Sitka, but we're talking about a significant distance between our islands down here. Also yes, the young adults who are still in the process of growing up will have to be paying for this bridge in taxes and all that. Personally, I'd spend that tax money on better roads on the island, the schools, and yes safer buildings, including our pool. and maybe changing the roofing on Kayhi (Ketchikan High School). That roof wasn't meant for Alaska either. Flat roofs in a rainy and snowy area of the world = Leaks.

That bridge, though seeming like a really good idea, turns out to not be too much of one. It does create jobs for people who have none or are looking for one in that sort of construction field. It already would be costing us millions of dollars which could be going for more beneficial use.

What about after the bridge is done? The cost of maintenance is surely going to be great. Keeping it weather-proof and all. And where are we getting the money for that maintenance? Higher taxes or just pay a regular toll for driving on the bridge? What about those who would choose to walk across the bridge. Will we have to pay to walk across?

I think the people who support the bridge are thinking "it will be good for the future of this town and its economy". Well, let me ask this. What about the future of the town and economy right now? What about us? What have you done for us lately? I know that sounds like a very whiney and selfish little bit, but what is it the city has done for the people who will be running this city in a matter of decades or so?

I'm very grateful for Ketchikan, but sometimes we aren't benefiting the right people. Anyway that's what I feel about that one so far. If anyone can sway my opinion in any way please do so. I am kind of iffy on this whole bridge thing because right now I'm worrying about how I'm going to pay for school.

Anyway, thanks for your time.

Archie Inoncillo
Ketchikan, AK - USA


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