Otmeloi

Otmeloi Way is seen in this April 2016 file photo. Drew Herman/Kodiak Daily Mirror

 The Kodiak Island Borough Assembly unanimously failed an ordinance to place the creation of a street lighting district for Otmeloi Way on the fall ballot.

Assembly members cited concerns over a lack of communication and clarity with residents.

Two residents of the area spoke at the Thursday night special meeting. One said he hadn’t seen design plans and the other said he had unanswered questions about future costs of running the lights.

The issue stems from a state proposal to improve the unpaved Otmeloi on the condition that the borough takes over the road. The borough does not have road powers, so taking on the responsibility falls to the service area. Service Area 1 already contains part of Otmeloi.

Assembly member Rebecca Skinner said she disagreed on the proposed area of the lighting district, which includes properties touching Otmeloi Way as well as those on Hilltop Drive, a few on Mallard Way, and one on Peninsula Road.

“I am going to vote against this because I don’t agree with the proposed area and the proposed lots as being responsible for the lighting, primarily because the road improvements and the lighting are being promoted as a safety issue particularly in regards to North Star and I don’t think that all of the kids from North Star live in (this area),” Skinner said.

Dan Rohrer said he was concerned there wasn’t enough detail in current plans, and he felt the number of streetlights in the plans was more than necessary.

Larry LeDoux reiterated earlier statements that safety of the street and students who use it to get to North Star Elementary School shouldn’t be placed entirely on the residents in the immediate area, because students from all over go to the school. Dennis Symmons agreed.

“I’m going to vote no because it’s not the right thing to do to ask these homeowners to pay to fix this school,” LeDoux said. “I don’t think they will anyway, because most people would see the unfairness of it.”

The ordinance had to be passed Thursday night to meet the deadline for the Oct. 4 election.

Contact staff reporter Julie Herrmann at editor@kodiakdailymirror.com.

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