CBJ Assembly meets tonight

Juneau, Alaska (KINY) The CBJ Assembly voted to spend up to $250,000 to fight litigation in court over marine passenger fees.

The CBJ voted unanimously to pay for legal fees and costs incurred in the battle with cruise lines who oppose the fees.

The Assembly approved a removal of prohibition over development near eagles nests in the borough in a 5-4 vote.   Assembly member Jesse Kiehl said it was a poor idea and the borough should not approve this just because it is difficult to enforce.  "We do have a healthy eagle population.  To disrupt their breeding grounds and expect no impacts, they use the same trees year after year after year, this will have an out sized impact.  This runs at odds with our brand and our tourism economy."

Kiehl pointed to the wildly popular videos of bald eagles filmed by Oprah Winfrey last summer that was viewed by over 800,000 people.  He said it would be better to allow variances to work because they do allow responsible development in town.

The assembly also approved the Lemon Creek Area plan.

Southeast Alaska Independent Living wants a lease for the ropes challenge course at the Eagle Valley Center.  The Assembly directed staff to negotiate an agreement.

The CBJ warming center has been open for 17 nights and 309 people have used the facility.  Glory Hole and Aware have provided staff to operate the shelter.   A homeless count will take place January 24.  There were 215 listed last year.  59 were considered un-sheltered.  CBJ Housing Coordinator Scott Ciambor said he expected improvement this year due to the increase in services provided by the CBJ including the Forget Me Not Manor.

The CBJ has 24 applicants for a homeless coordinator position.  They expect to select the new employee soon. 



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