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CITY COUNCIL

Métoule via Flickr Creative Common

Over the next four years, Unalaskans will see their monthly utility bills grow by $18.86 on average. For island businesses, it’ll be an $837.52 jump.

The City Council unanimously approved the rate hikes at a lightning-fast meeting Tuesday night.

The cost of wastewater utilities will increase by 15 percent over four years, while the cost of solid waste grows by 13.5 percent over three years.

Métoule via Flickr Creative Common

Lately, the Unalaska City Council has slogged through a series of marathon meetings, filled with tough financial decisions, tie-breaker votes, and passionate public testimony.

Councilors finally broke through at a meeting Tuesday night.

They unanimously passed budget priorities for the next fiscal year and narrowed in on a new policy to soften the blow of upcoming rate hikes.

Annie Ropeik

After nearly 10 years, Unalaska has taken one of the final steps in making the Unalaska Marine Center a reality -- finding financing for the $44 million dock renovation.

Mayor Frank Kelty pushed the project forward at Tuesday's City Council meeting, after councilors split over whether to partner with the Alaska Bond Bank Authority.

Kelty broke the tie and voted to authorize the sale of city bonds worth $35 million, which will be shopped to investors for startup cash.

Sammy Hancock via Flickr Creative Commons

Unalaskans could soon pay double the sales tax when buying alcohol and tobacco -- if voters approve the hike at the next municipal election.

The City Council added the measure to the October ballot at a meeting Tuesday night, when councilors unanimously agreed to send the issue before voters.

Laura Kraegel/KUCB

City officials are ready to draft Unalaska’s budget for fiscal year 2018. But after a veto by Mayor Frank Kelty at Tuesday's City Council meeting, they’re going to have to wait.

Kelty hit pause on budget planning when he struck down a resolution that prioritized adding staff at the Department of Public Safety over hiring a full-time building inspector.

The dispute comes down limited funds. The city has proposed adding three positions at Public Safety, but officials have also called for an inspector and a grant writer. Unalaska can’t afford it all.

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