The Kodiak Borough Assembly passed its strategic plan at its regular meeting Thursday while its economic development partnership with the Kodiak Chamber of Commerce formally ended earlier in the day.
The assembly voted 5-0 to pass its 2014-18 strategic development plan, laying out the assembly’s vision in terms of restructuring the budgeting process, islandwide transportation, a military facility zone and economic development cooperation with the city of Kodiak.
“We put a lot of work into the strategic plan, and as new things come onto line there is still a little bit of tweaking to be done to it,” borough Mayor Jerrol Friend said.
Earlier the chamber’s board submitted a letter before the assembly meeting giving notice it would discontinue economic development work for the borough in April.
One overarching question about future economic development for the borough now looms: Could the borough, as in years past, provide an in-house economic development office? Assembly member Tuck Bonney said this option could prove to be cost-prohibitive.
“The cost would be over $100,000 and if you’re going to get somebody good (to do the economic development), it’s going to cost you more than that,” he said. “It’s just a lot of money. Do we want to add another $100,000 to the payroll? I have no strong feelings for or against it. I’m going to wait to see what the assembly has to say about it.”
Assembly members agreed some help could be provided on the economic development front with cooperation between the borough and the city.
The assembly also approved restructuring Women’s Bay boundaries to promote land sales this spring and a $10,000 funding proposal for the Hospice of Kodiak. The body proclaimed March 2014 as Women’s History Month and added Kodiak’s voice to the Choose Respect national anti-violence against women program.
The next assembly work session is March 27, while the regular meeting will be held April 3.