Cordova Council discusses local election, south harbor project

Volunteer Abby Bourgeois displays an “I voted” sticker. (March 1, 2022) Photo by Zachary Snowdon Smith/for The Cordova Times

Cordova City Council convened March 2 to discuss myriad of topics, including the south harbor rebuild. The city is intent on keeping the project rolling and is on a quest for more funding. An overwhelming majority of Cordovans voted yes on Proposition 1, which allows the city to take a $2 million dollar Department of Environmental Conservation loan.

Public Works Director Samantha Greenwood discussed a contract that is being negotiated with R&M Consulting, an engineering firm who specializes in cold region design work. The consulting group would assist with various needs including proposals and grant administration. There are multiple steps needed to be taken to get into grant agreements, Greenwood said, before the funds are released. The firm will also help to assure procurement rules are followed, such as buying American steel.

Cordova Harbor. (Dec. 1, 2021) Photo by Zachary Snowdon Smith/The Cordova Times

City Manager Helen Howarth said the fund sources have caveats to them before they can be released, including geotechnical studies. For now, the city is also using the harbor reserve account for the south harbor project.

“We have $32 million already committed to this project … the team is working really hard,” Howarth said.

Rehabilitation services have expanded at Cordova Community Medical Center and an open house is scheduled for the end of March, said Dr. Hannah Sanders during the CCMC authority board report.

The City of Cordova Volunteer Fire Department is putting into place a “safe buildings program,” which will offer home safety checks to make sure the space is secure for first responders during an emergency. Mailers will be going out to residents about the program.

The city of Cordova will welcome some new faces to the elected officials’ roster this month after a “fantastic election turnout,” Mayor Clay Koplin said.

According to the city clerk report, over 800 votes were counted thus far in the election, with 18 absentee ballots and 5 question ballots still waiting to be counted. The election will be certified at the March 16 meeting after the remaining votes have been counted. If at least 10 of the still outstanding ballots are counted, it will be considered the biggest general election in the City of Cordova in over a decade.

Further discussion items included upgrading the community water supply. Getting clean drinking water to the 6-Mile area was proposed by councilmember Tom Bailer to add to the projects list. The motion was seconded to amend the project list.