Jul 13 2009
Assembly Considers Non-Profit Funding Requests
Monday, 13 July 2009

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            At its work session Thursday, the Kodiak Island Borough Assembly took up the issue of non-profit funding for fiscal year 2010. The assembly made adjustments to its funding list to bring it under budget, and raised questions about requests from two groups. KMXT's Erik Wander has more.



            The borough received a total of 271-thousand, 626 dollars in non-profit funding requests from health and human services organizations, and 82-thousand dollars from education, culture and recreation groups. Both amounts slightly exceeded the figures the borough had budgeted. Assembly members managed to bring the total amount of funding under budget by approving less funding than requested for three organizations requesting significantly more funding than they received last year. The assembly reduced Kodiak Island Health Care Foundation's requested 30-thousand dollars to 25-thousand, and Kodiak Humane Society's five-thousand dollar request to four-thousand. It also reduced the seven-thousand, five-hundred dollars Kodiak Little League had requested to five-thousand. Questions were also raised about Kodiak Rodeo and State Fair's status as a non-profit organization, and Threshold Services' request for just over 10-thousand dollars in non-profit funding when it is also expected to receive a contract estimated to be worth approximately 280-thousand dollars to provide recycling services. Assemblywoman Chris Lynch, who is also Threshold's board president, explained the difference between the contract and being funded as a non-profit.

--         (Lynch 1                      36 sec.             "We bid on the contract ... could have submitted one.")

            Threshold board member Ellen Simeonoff explained how the organization's business plan ties in with its mission of providing employment for disabled people.

--         (Simeonoff 1               19 sec.             "The purpose of this business ...  particular type of funding.")

            Maggie Rocheleau (Rosh-low), who is also a Threshold board member, further clarified that the non-profit funding does not represent a subsidy from the borough. She also emphasized the core mission of the business.

--         (Rocheleau 1              20 sec.             "As our mission ...  so that we are competitive.")

            Assemblywoman Pat Branson said that when the assembly went through its budget, three important education, culture and recreation groups were removed from the non-profit detail. She clarified why.

--         (Branson 1                  29 sec.             "The Maritime Museum ... we need to make that clear.")

            Branson pointed out that several non-profits failed to take advantage of the opportunity to raise money for their organizations through the borough's crossing guard program.

--         (Branson 2                  34 sec.             "There are 15 non-profits ...  many of them are not.")

            Assembly members agreed to meet with representatives from Kodiak Rodeo and State Fair regarding their request for 10-thousnd dollars in funding if they are able to produce documentation of non-profit status. In addition to Lynch being board president of Threshold, Branson is executive director of Senior Citizens of Kodiak, which will receive 35-thousand dollars if the non-profit funding list is approved. In the interest of full disclosure, Kodiak Public Broadcasting will receive funding from the borough as a non-profit organization in the amount of seven-thousand, five-hundred dollars if approved. The assembly will vote on the non-profit funding list at its regular meeting this Thursday.

            I'm Erik Wander.