I, Tony Knowles, Governor of the State of Alaska, make the following findings:
1. On December 20, 2001, fire destroyed the community center building in Sleetmute, Alaska. The building housed the community medical and dental clinics, the village public safety officer (VPSO) office and jail facilities, the washeteria, the Sleetmute Traditional Council office, and equipment for the Alaska Rural Communications Service television station. The village’s JD-966 wheeled loader, which was parked next to the community building, was heavily damaged and needs replacement.
2. The Department of Military and Veterans’ Affairs, Division of Emergency Services (DES), performed a threat assessment and resolution determination. This assessment found that replacement of the destroyed facilities and equipment is essential for public health and safety. The community medical and dental clinics are essential for public health, and the VPSO office and jail are necessary for public safety. The washeteria provides the only public washing and shower facility in a community where over 70 percent of the households lack both water and sewer service. The loader is the community’s sole piece of heavy equipment available for flood and wildfire control. The assessment found that if the community facilities are not reconstructed and the loader is not replaced, there will be a significant risk to public health and safety, and to public and private property.
3. In its assessment, DES estimated the cost of replacing the destroyed facilities and equipment at approximately $2.42 million. The assessment evaluated funding sources other than the disaster relief fund (AS 26.23.300) and located nondisaster relief fund funding for most of the recovery costs. The assessment found that there is an unmet need of approximately $150,000 (including project administrative fees) when all available funding sources outside the disaster relief fund are considered.
4. Based on information from the threat assessment and resolution determination by DES, I have determined that this incident poses an imminent and continuing threat of sufficient severity and magnitude to justify state action.
5. Under AS 26.23.020(h), I find it appropriate that money from the disaster relief fund be expended to respond to the effects of this incident by assisting in the replacement of the essential facilities and equipment.
Under the authority of art. III, sec. 1, of the Alaska Constitution and AS 26.23.020(h) and AS 26.23.300(b), I, Tony Knowles, Governor of the State of Alaska, hereby order that:
Consistent with AS 26.23.010 – AS 26.23.220 (Alaska Disaster Act) and AS 26.23.300(b), expenditures be made from the disaster relief fund to supplement funds from other available sources for the replacement of the community center, including the community medical and dental clinics, the VPSO office and jail facilities, and the washeteria and showers, and for an appropriate piece of heavy equipment to replace the loader. The amount of these expenditures is not to exceed $150,000, including project administrative fees.
This Order takes effect immediately.
Dated at Juneau, Alaska, this 24th day of May 2002.
By: S/S Tony Knowles