SitNews - Stories in the News - Ketchikan, Alaska


Library Location: Ballot initiative
By Chris J. Herby


June 04, 2010

Editor SitNews

It seems that here in Ketchikan there always needs to be a divisive issue to keep everyone from getting bored. This year's issue appears to be the location of the proposed new library.

I personally don't really care where it goes as long as we get it and get the matching state funds so we don't have to foot the entire bill. I am becoming worried that the pending ballot initiative may delay the project to the point that we lose the State matching funds.

I was very surprised to see some of the names of people involved in pushing this ballot initiative. I was even more surprised to see one of our council members involved in it. We elect council members for the purpose of making decisions and I believe we need to live with their decisions whether we like them or not. They will never be able to make a decision that everyone agrees with, especially a decision on a location of a new public facility.

In recent times the council has made other decisions as to locations of public facilities that I certainly didn't agree with. The location of the Berth IV cruise ship dock was one example. Many people disagreed with the chosen location but it moved forward and was constructed.

More recently, the council chose a location for the new fire station that is in a very crowded tourist area and has very deep fill which will limit the life of the structure. I feel it was a very poor decision but yet there has not been a ballot initiative pushed.

I think it is wrong to try to overturn a decision once the elected council has made it. If you don't agree with their decisions, the right process is to vote them out of office at the next election. I think the group pushing for this ballot initiative means well but are making a big mistake that may cost our community many millions of dollars in state matching funds.

This initiative should be dropped and we should get behind this library project and move it forward.


Chris J. Herby
Ketchikan, AK


Received June 01, 2010 - Published June 04, 2010


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