Ketchikan OKs funds for new marine highway headquarters

Posted: Tuesday, March 16, 2004

KETCHIKAN - The Ketchikan Gateway Borough Assembly voted unanimously Monday night to approve a $500,000 supplemental appropriation to renovate the Ketchikan Pulp Co. administration building at Ward Cove.

The building will serve as the new headquarters for the Alaska Marine Highway System administration offices, currently in Juneau.

Borough Manager Roy Eckert said the 44 jobs moving to Ketchikan would stimulate the economy and boost sales and property taxes in the borough.

Assembly members did not discuss the details of how the appropriation would be spent. But the lease proposal sent to the state in early March calls for repairs to the roof, surveys of lighting structures for toxic PCBs, resolving outstanding fire code requirements and complying with requirements under the Americans with Disabilities Act.

The building has been largely abandoned since the pulp mill closed in 1997.

The building's occupancy is 328, leaving room for 284 more employees once the ferry workers move. Ketchikan's lease offers the state the option of moving other state jobs.

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