One of the two buildings used to teach elementary school children in Kachemak Selo sits on the outer edge of the village Thursday, Aug. 30, 2018 in the village at the head of Kachemack Bay. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News)

One of the two buildings used to teach elementary school children in Kachemak Selo sits on the outer edge of the village Thursday, Aug. 30, 2018 in the village at the head of Kachemack Bay. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News)

Borough, school district seeks to extend state infrastructure grant

The biggest project would be the construction of a new school in Kachemak Selo.

  • Thursday, July 23, 2020 11:48pm
  • News

The Kenai Peninsula Borough and Borough School District still have their eyes on a new school in Kachemak-Selo, and a request to extend a state grant to help fund much of the school’s construction is being reviewed by the Department of Education and Early Development.

District Superintendent John O’Brien said at the July 13 district board of education meeting that the state’s education department is reviewing the borough’s request.

O’Brien said Mayor Charlie Pierce requested an extension on the grant when the district and borough decided to push back a $30 million school construction bond to next year’s election cycle. At the July 13 meeting, O’Brien said it is the borough and district’s intent to go to voters with a bond package in the fall of 2021.

The $29,940,000 bond proposal tackles 19 school projects considered a “priority and critical to maintaining key infrastructure for both community and educational needs,” a Feb. 4 school board resolution said.

The biggest project in the proposed bond package would be the construction of a new school in Kachemak Selo, which could take advantage of more than $10 million in state funds, if the state will grant a deadline extension. Currently, the grant has a deadline of June 2021.

K-Selo has been in need of a new school for nearly 10 years. In 2011, the village petitioned the school board for a new facility. In 2016, the state appropriated $10,010,000 for construction of the school, but in order to proceed the borough needed to provide a match.

The state’s grant has already been extended once. In the October 2018 election, peninsula voters denied to fund the $5.5 million to build a new school in Kachemak-Selo. In early 2019, the borough asked the department for a seven-year extension on the grant, but only received two additional years to use the $10 million in matching funds.

The current school in Kachemak-Selo is made up of three borough-leased buildings and serves about 46 students. The borough and district have said the current school has deteriorated to the point that it is no longer viable as an educational facility.

More in News

EPA logo
Alaska Native group to receive EPA funds for clean water projects

The agency is handing out $4.3 million to participating tribal organizations nationwide.

COVID-19. (Image courtesy CDC)
State reports 6 new COVID deaths

The deaths, which included a Kenai woman in her 40s, pushed the total to 840 since the pandemic began.

Ryanna Thurman (right) speaks to a library employee at the Soldotna Public Library on Thursday, March 25 in Soldotna, Alaska. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Soldotna library seeks OK for grant fund purchases

The funds are made available under the federal American Rescue Plan Act

Alaska State Troopers logo.
Kenai man killed in vehicle rollover

The man was travelling northbound on the Sterling Highway on Tuesday.

Cheryl Morse and Tom Kleeman prepare Thanksgiving lunch at the Kenai Peninsula Food Bank on Wednesday, Nov. 24, 2021. (Camille Botello/Peninsula Clarion)
Food bank opens doors for Thanksgiving lunch

“We don’t know what to expect, so we’re trying to still be cautious on our limited seating.”

Carter Kyle (left), Lincoln Kyle (center) and Brandon Kyle (right) hand off Thanksgiving meals at a drive through event hosted by the Salvation Army on Thursday, Nov. 25, 2021 in Kenai, Alaska. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Thanksgiving on the go

Salvation Army hands out meals in drive-thru event

Bench creator, Brad Hughes, pours the molding material over the clay while Rob Wiard and Matt brush the liquid rubber over each character on the bench to ensure it is covered evenly. (Photo by Sarah Knapp/Homer News)
Molds for the Loved Lost Bench are underway

Construction for the memorial bench continues as the rubber molds to shape the concrete are made.

Alaska Rep. David Eastman sits at his desk on the Alaska House floor in Juneau, Alaska, on March 5, 2020. Dozens of West Point graduates have demanded state Rep. Eastman resign from office over his ties to a right wing extremist group, saying his affiliation has betrayed the values of the U.S. Military Academy he attended. (AP Photo/Becky Bohrer, File)
70 West Point grads call on Alaska lawmaker to resign

Fellow West Point graduates called on Eastman to resign after his membership in the Oath Keepers became public.

Most Read