The Fairbanks Borough Assembly, at its December 14 meeting, will be voting on a resolution that includes a long list of projects to the Capital Improvement Program list. Many of those projects are trail related.
If you support one or more of the trail-related projects or the entire resolution (Resolution No. 2023 – 44), please let the Assembly know. This resolution can always be amended, with projects being removed. See the list of trail-related projects at the bottom of this post.
HOW TO ADVOCATE
- ATTEND the meeting (virtually or in-person). A public hearing for the resolution will start at or after 7 p.m. See an agenda for the meeting HERE.
- Testify or contact Assembly members via email and/or phone before the meeting. Find contact information HERE.
IMPORTANCE OF THE CIP LIST
A project being included on the CIP list means that borough employees can spend time on the project, including to find grant funding for it. If a project is not on the CIP list, it’s still possible that it would be undertaken, but the chances are much slimmer.
The projects on this resolution (listed below) have gone through a lengthy public process. Jumping the line is highly frowned upon. A project would have to be advocated by private citizens and would require a lot of lobbying to get it be considered outside the normal channels. And doing so may annoy or anger supporters of projects that went through the process.
PRICE OF A PROJECT
The price tag of the project does NOT mean the entire funding will come from borough coffers. What typically happens is that borough employees find federal, state, and/or private grants for the projects. Those grants usually have a funding match requirement that varies depending on the grant program. Matches can range from 5-10% up to 50%.
In any case, the Assembly has the final authority to approve funding for a project. If grant funding is found for a project, then the Assembly can say yes or no to approving the match funding. If the borough administration recommends that funding unrelated to a grant be spent on a project, the Assembly has approval authority over that.
A project being included on the CIP list does not guarantee when planned work – including finding outside funding – will start on the project. That is determined by the mayor and administration depending on several factors, including available funding, importance of the project to the community, and how much public support has been shown for a project. That is a big reason public testimony is so important.
Trail advocates know how important trails are to the community, but trails can have a tough time competing against projects like libraries, animal shelters, or schools. Those are all important, of course, but we must also tend to trails, which do so many things for us including:
- Help people get outside to exercise for their mental and physical health.
- Contribute to our local economy.
- Diversify our visitor industry.
- Attract workers and residents.
LIST OF TRAIL-RELATED PROJECTS
Below is a list of trail-related projects on the resolution and their price tags. The resolution has a description of each project. You can see the resolution HERE.
You can see a fuller description of each project by looking at its nomination form on this PAGE.
- Alaska Long Trail Design & Establishment $3,350,000
- Birch Hill Recreation Area Underground Power $3,000,000
- CLRA- Trail System Improvements and Upgrades $1,800,000
- Connect Skarland to Dog Mushers Trails $20,000
- Equinox Marathon Trail Extension & Completion $2,886,840
- Isberg Recreation Area Master Plan Implementation $3,769,902
- Peede Open Space Trail System Development $3,088,044
- Skyline Ridge Park Trail System Development $1,238,522
- South Davis Park-Master Plan Implementation $4,000,752
- Tanana Lakes Master Plan Implementation: Parking & Trails $3,200,000