Nikiski voters shoot down law enforcement service area

Nikiski area residents shot down a law enforcement service area in Tuesday’s municipal election.

Barring any changes after absentee ballots are counted, Proposition 2 failed with 541 votes cast against it and 399 votes in favor of it.

The measure asked Nikiski voters to approve the creation of a Nikiski Law Enforcement Service Area along with a five-member board to tackle the issue of crime in the area. The board would have taken office immediately following the election.

Prospective service area board member Ben Carpenter said that although the issue of crime is not going away, the point was always to inform the public about the problem.

“Ann (Dooley-Krogseng) and I talked about this early on, and we always felt that it was what needed to happen … to present this to the public and see what they had to say,” Carpenter said.

The measure also sought voter approval for a 1.5 mill rate levy increase, or an extra $150 per $100,000 of assessed property value for each taxpayer in the service area boundaries, which would have mirrored the Nikiski Fire Service Area’s boundaries.

Despite the outcome, Carpenter said the Nikiski community has pulled together throughout the process of learning about the proposed service area.

“We’re better off now,” he said.

Voting in the Nikiski precinct was slow to start Tuesday morning but began to pick up around 1 p.m. at the North Peninsula Recreation Center. Election Board Chairman Betty Idleman said Nikiski usually sees about half of its registered voters show up at the polls.

At the Salamatof poll location, there was a steady stream of voters for at least the first half of the day, said Election Board member Marian Nickelson. Turnout really depends on what’s on the ballot from year to year, she said.

Some Nikiski voters said they shot down the proposed service area because they felt it needed to be further defined and organized.

“I just think that there needs to be more thought into it instead of raising property taxes,” said Nikiski resident LeAnn McGahan. “I don’t want us to have to pay for it out of our pockets with the property taxes. I want to look into it a little further.”

Reach Megan Pacer at megan.pacer@peninsulaclarion.com.

More in News

Daily school district COVID-19 risk levels: Sept. 28

Risk levels are based on COVID cases reported in a community and determine how schools will operate.

Giessmann, Buckelew win Kenai River Marathon

Parks, Wilson take half marathon

Daily school district COVID-19 risk levels: Sept. 26

Risk levels are based on COVID cases reported in a community and determine how schools will operate.

Census deadline extended to Oct. 31

Alaskans will have until Oct. 31 to complete the census.

Photo by Brian Mazurek/Peninsula Clarion 
                                Linda Farnsworth Hutchings, left, and Kenai Peninsula Borough Mayor Charlie Pierce, right, participate in a mayoral candidate forum hosted by the Kenai Chamber of Commerce at the Kenai Visitor and Cultural Center on Sept. 9
Farnsworth-Hutchings emphasizes team work

The race for Kenai Peninsula Borough Mayor

COVID-19. (Image via CDC)
DHSS: 116 new cases

DHSS announced that 116 people tested positive for COVID-19 on Friday.

Borough Mayor Charlie Pierce is photographed at the Kenai Peninsula Clarion office in Kenai, Alaska, on Sept. 25, 2020. (Photo by Brian Mazurek/Peninsula Clarion)
Pierce highlights fiscal restraint, experience

The race for Kenai Peninsula Borough mayor

Most Read