The Wrangell Borough Assembly voted Wednesday to approve a capital budget request list for the upcoming fiscal year.
Fixing the swimming pool is the first priority. Wrangell plans to request $1.5 million of state or federal funding for the facility’s mechanical problems and roof issues that became urgent in September.
Borough Manager Jeff Jabusch said the price could change.
“This would still be the number one thing, but if we get an amount from the architect that’s doing this study, then we can plug something more exact in,” Jabusch said.
Wrangell is requesting $4 million for final boat yard improvements and $500,000 for a sewer pump replacement.
The borough will also try to secure about 5 percent of the funding needed to design and construct a new hospital.
Although a few races in Alaska were too close to call on election night, the pot initiative clearly passed statewide and in Wrangell.
Resident Steven Cole told the assembly the regulated sale of marijuana could benefit Wrangell’s economy, as long as the borough does not implement additional roadblocks for people wanting to start a business.
“The City Council should not pass a resolution saying, ‘We’re against this, and we’re going to do all we can to make it unprofitable.’ If anything, take no action until you see what the state comes up with. But don’t come out of the gate being against it,” Cole said.
Mayor David Jack said he does not think the assembly will take action on the issue at all. But he said there could be tension as pot remains illegal under federal law, and the federal government provides the community with a lot of funding.
“Realistically, is the FBI going to come in and regulate people smoking pot on the street? I don’t think so. Is the city going to pass an ordinance that says you can’t do that? I don’t think so,” Jack said.
Meanwhile, the state is developing marijuana regulations.
Borough Manager Jabusch also noted the Cassiar Street paving project is complete.