In a lightning-fast meeting Monday night, the Juneau City Assembly passed eight resolutions for capital improvements, wage increases for marine engineers, public safety employees and firefighters and amendments to existing ordinances.
Assembly members approved three separate resolutions providing previously negotiated wage increases to the Marine Engineers Beneficial Association, Public Safety Employees Association and the International Association of Firefighters and their unrepresented employees.
The Marine Engineers union covers maritime workers such as deck officers and engineers while the Public Safety union covers both municipal and airport police.
The Assembly also passed an ordinance allowing the Juneau Police Department to use grant funding for training. JPD was awarded $35,292 by the U.S. Department of Justice for various training opportunities. According to the Assembly Agenda for the Nov. 4 meeting, JPD leadership had identified the training opportunities in, “advanced crime prevention through environmental design, explosive ordnance device, Microsoft boot camp, national incident-based reporting, and report building.”
No local match was required to receive grant funds.
There was an appropriation of $1 million for capital improvement projects at the Juneau International Airport for terminal reconstruction and three taxiways. Taxiways are paths for connecting aircraft to runways or terminals. Funding for those projects was provided by Passenger Facility Charge, a fee that all airline travelers in the U.S. pay for airport maintenance.
Two housekeeping resolutions, one to clarify the city’s policy on the out-of-borough tax exemption and another on water utility customer class and rates, were passed as well.
Lastly, the Assembly voted to amend the payment terms for the city’s RecycleWorks program to reflect a downturn in the global recycling market. Additionally, the city has completed its own recycling facility at the landfill which will process the city’s recyclable materials.
The Assembly also passed a number of resolutions, (distinct from an ordinance in that resolutions do not pass any codified laws) the most significant of which authorized the city to join the Alaska Remote Seller Sales Tax Commission.
In 2018, the U.S. Supreme Court found that states could levy taxes on remote sales (i.e. internet sales such as Amazon) and the state has developed the Alaska Intergovernmental Remote Seller Sales Tax Agreement. That body is tasked with creating a unified program to assess remote taxes. The city of Juneau would still retain the ability to levy its own sales tax and by joining the Commission city staff can ensure they do so in compliance with state and federal law.
• Contact reporter Peter Segall at 523-2228 or firstname.lastname@example.org.