Latest plan: Anchorage Assembly wants to put homeless back in Sullivan Arena in addition to Golden Lion Hotel

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The Anchorage Assembly majority has a plan: Reclaim the Sullivan Arena for housing the homeless and put homeless in the Golden Lion Hotel near the preschool run by the Lubavitch Jewish Center of Alaska, which has objected to the plan of putting homeless people near children.

The Assembly backroom deals to create a large and spread-out homeless industrial complex is evident in its latest proposal:

  • Increase of capacity at Brother Francis Shelter of 20 individuals 
  • Increase of capacity at Covenant House of 25 individuals 
  • Semi-congregate sheltering at Bean’s Café of 40 individuals 
  • Non-congregate use of the former Golden Lion as housing of 120 individuals 
  • Congregate sheltering at the Sullivan Arena of 150 individuals 

This Assembly leftist majority will have the plans available for the public by Friday, and has scheduled a special meeting for Monday from 6-8 pm in the Assembly Chambers, when the majority has pre-arranged to have the votes to pass the plan. Go to www.muni.org/Assembly for the agenda and meeting information.

“I look forward to the Assembly approving this plan on Monday. After that, it will be up to the Mayor to officially sign off on and quickly implement the plan. I was glad to see representation from the Administration at today’s meeting. They said loud and clear that they want to hear from the public before making final decisions, so I encourage people to review our plan and give your feedback to the Mayor before next Monday’s meeting,” said Assemblyman Felix Rivera in a letter.

Mayor Dave Bronson said he awaits to hear from the public about the plan the Assembly has devised.

But Reclaim Midtown, a group of neighbors in Anchorage, says the Assembly promised in 2020 that the Golden Lion would never be used as a homeless shelter. Reclaim Midtown produced a letter from Assemblywoman Meg Zaletel, who wrote that the hotel, purchased by Mayor Ethan Berkowitz, was only for drug rehabilitation and that information being spread that said otherwise was inaccurate:

In 2020, Zaletel also wrote, “Felix and I have an amendment that would prevent this facility from ever being used as a homeless shelter while owned by the municipality.”

41 COMMENTS

  1. You didn’t think the Politburo was ever really gonna let go of it, did you?

    The history of left wing fascism is simple. They get voted in, then rig the voting process. They seize everything of merit in sight. They don’t stop until forcibly removed

  2. Substance misuse?? No Meg, call it what it is, substance ABUSE! How do you misuse Heroin, opioids, fentanyl, and the myriad of other deadly drugs circulating through our communities (most brought through the southern border). Drugs are the root cause of our crimes and homelessness. Maybe big pharma could help out with the costs.

  3. Great! We get to pay for repairs twice on the Sullivan after the homeless folk trash it, again. Won’t there be some closed up schools that will be available after this round of budget cuts by the School District & Superintendent in-training?

  4. they had a lot of time to put this together so their (assembly) ineptness reeks of subterfuge at this point. The sully is a piss poor choice as far as locations go but at this point their delay tactics leave them little choice, the Mayors plan for the one-stop center was fantastic and was very unfortunate the assembly let their childish attitudes rule the situation much to the detriment of the homeless. My message to the assembly: Please, step aside and let the Mayor do his job, this is for the city of Anchorage not you, ok?

    • Unfortunately that’s Anchorage. We are the Blue city.
      I don’t see these libs being voted out anytime soon. Too much welfare collectors & gov workers here.

  5. In 2021 dollars the cost to build, and then refurbish, the Sullivan Arena is about $80 million dollars. Using this facility to house a small population of drug using bums is vastly disproportionate to its intended purpose. Say 140 bums are housed there- that is a facility cost of roughly $571,000.000 per person.

    One could give each bum a home worth $250,000.00 and it would be cheaper.

    Anchorage taxpayers should never stand for this. And we should not be placing mentally ill/criminals in close proximity to children.

    Do Democrats ALWAYS have to try and destroy the quality of life in every city they gain control of?

    Madness.

  6. It should be abundantly clear by now that the muni can save money simply renting long term motel and hotel rooms for these people instead of housing them in sports arenas……..IF the hotel owners will put up with the criminal activity of these patrons. If not, why not just jail them and get it over with? Are sports arenas cheaper housing units than jail cells, even considering the added benefit of the criminals not using illegal drugs and committing other crimes because of the strict supervision of a jail cell?

    • Jail cells is ultimately the solution. If the muni would just build them and not call them “jail cells” the problem would start decreasing immediately.
      – Call it a homeless shelter.
      – Don’t allow drugs or alcohol
      – Require showers and clean clothes before entrance
      – Build it like a jail with small units that are durable and can be hosed out easily
      – Don’t allow more than a small amount of people per “unit”, even if people are visiting each others’ units
      – Have strong security and the facility should be built to allow enforcement of isolated lockdowns if fighting gets to be a real problem
      – Inspect each unit at random times for weapons that are not allowed.
      – Limited storage lockers for possessions
      – Have oversight

      You get the idea, but people are free to leave if they haven’t committed any crimes. But make camping in the city illegal again. And public intoxication is already illegal, just need to enforce the existing laws. Same with pooping. So if drunk and passed out, you get thrown into the drunk tank that is a jail or taken home and given a citation. If caught doing it again and the citation hasn’t been paid, the drunk tank isn’t optional.

      The non-profits can come in and coddle people if they choose. Or they can come in and offer free rehab or jobs or skills training or a better place to stay or whatever.

      • “…….people are free to leave if they haven’t committed any crimes………”
        Your idea will only work only if illegal camping and trespassing laws are enforced.

    • This is way cheaper then jail. Prisons have an army of well paid, trained, unionized ‘public servants’ & bureaucrats.
      The Sullivan has security guards & social workers that show up occasionally.
      Although I agree, we should start incarcerating some of these bums , for our good & theirs.
      The mentally ill often can not handle freedom.

      • “…….This is way cheaper then jail………”
        No way. The Sullivan Arena is a huge facility to only sleep a couple hundred people in cots. And a jail provides the access security these people really need, but which they, the Assembly, and the deniers refuse to accept. This entire issue centers on giving these people the freedom that they can’t manage for themselves, whether it’s because of mental illness or substance abuse.
        Again, this isn’t our first rodeo with this silliness. If Beans Cafe and the Brother Francis Shelter was the answer 30 years ago, they simply need expansion. If it isn’t the answer, a valid explanation (including the cost alternatives) needs to be provided.

  7. “……..Increase of capacity at Brother Francis Shelter of 20 individuals
    Increase of capacity at Covenant House of 25 individuals
    Semi-congregate sheltering at Bean’s Café of 40 individuals
    Non-congregate use of the former Golden Lion as housing of 120 individuals
    Congregate sheltering at the Sullivan Arena of 150 individuals……..”
    All of this angst over 355 individuals? All the millions upon millions of dollars? The loss of use of the city’s sports arena for multiple years? All the back and forth over such few people?
    For the Love of Christ, the Goose Bay Correctional Facility can house over 1000 inmates, and even at the exceptional cost of building a prison, this state can build three such facilities with just one year’s PFD payout.
    I well remember when this homeless insanity ended (temporarily) with the muni providing the Brother Francis Shelter facility, but strictly balked at operating it, so the Archdiocese of Anchorage operated it as a non-profit. No teachers union to fight. Government/Church cooperation, sorta’ like the human smuggling operation going on so successfully at our southern border right now.
    So why can’t the muni provide another warehouse and let the Church wash the vomit from their mattresses and feed them PB&J sandwiches like before?

    • Because liberals want to do away with Christianity, at all costs.
      Christianity does not condone the gay lifestyle lived by some members of our assembly.
      It is distasteful to them …. they prefer Pride month.

  8. The humane purpose of sheltering indigent people has been corrupted by the Left. If there is no price to pay for abusing yourself with drugs and alcohol or by suffering untreated mental conditions that you are in danger of injury or death, you should be placed in custody for a minimum of 3 days for evaluation and treatment – basically you are locked up for a short period to see if you can be helped.
    Alternatively, you can/must agree to show proof of entering a voluntary treatment/assistance program within the first 3 days of utilizing the public shelter. If you don’t – you are not permitted to stay longer and are back on the street and in danger of injury or death (See rule no.1)

  9. Well, I’d rather them trash the Sully again then put it back in Dempsey because Dempsey is actually being used and it is right next to the West High. Even proposing Dempsey makes me question any of the work this task force has been doing.

    But why isn’t the Sully being used already? Has the damage been that bad and repairs have been taking place ever since? If so, so we are going to waste all of that time and money and put them back in? And how many people sell out the Sully? Over 6,000 and we can’t put more than even 200 people in there? Have they never heard of bunk beds? What a flippin waste and it’s all because the assembly has been quibbling with the mayor and making sure he can’t do anything.

    If we are going to go through all of this trouble to guarantee housing, we better make it completely illegal to campout again. But I have a feeling this assembly will make sure to not guarantee enough housing. Austin Quinn-Davidson has a blackbelt in ACLU interference after all.

  10. Filter out “shelters” and “rehab”, an intriguing possibility emerges:
    .
    The Assembly backroom deals intend to create a large, spread-out homeless industrial complex
    .
    —with large, spread-out, street addresses– where bums, alive and dead, conscious or otherwise, can be: registered to vote, helped to vote, helped with mailing their mail-in ballots.
    .
    No? Who’s gonna check?
    .
    This virtually assures Anchorage’s already easily corruptible municipal election system can be manipulated to produce, by a credible margin, whatever results Assembly officials wish.
    .
    Call it extra election insurance. Remember, the Municipal Clerk, an Assembly employee, counts the votes, which means the Clerk’ll probably be counting a bunch of brand new, properly filled out bum ballots, just enough wouldn’t you know, to sway an election into whatever results Assembly officials wish.
    .
    With the election system more or less permanently FUBAR’d, Assembly officials can finally address important things like a big ole sales tax, a school tax, ending term-limits… for starters.
    .
    Can’t happen here? What stops it from happening here?

  11. My main question and ONE THAT MUST BE SOLVED before the Golden Lion becomes a treatment center..is: WHO is going to responsible for paying for the damages to any of the children raped or any other damages across the street at the Jewish School, when the “patients” escape from the guards. We already know, that before school starts, the people have to search over the school’s property for needles and such paraphernalia before the children arrive. One more item: What’s the purpose of putting $$$$ into the treatment center building only (even temporarily) if the State wants to eventually take it for Imminent Domain for the “36th Avenue Improvements..

    • After reading an ADN article: I stand to be corrected.. ONLY IF the Golden Lion is used for housing AND NOT for shelter, with THE stipulation NO ALCOHOL ALLOWED on premises, would pass my judgement. Being used like the downtown newly bought/renovated Guesthouse hotel “Being set up as for “housing project offers a chance for dozens of single adults who are “workforce ready,” or already working while homeless.” This is would be preferred over a treatment center.

  12. This is the making of a movie. A huge piece of real estate filled with undesirables where drug dealers make the rules and the taxpayer supports to prevent turning them loose into their neighborhoods. Of course it will have to expand to accommodate the ever growing population. Kind of like a lawless territory within the city. What many countries call the slums. It really doesn’t take much imagination for those who have traveled abroad beyond the garden spots of the world. We have all the makings in place, and the only thing standing in the way is a few assembly members and a mayor, but the works are in to get rid of them. Glad to not live in Anchorage, and I avoid it whenever possible. Soon, what is left of the remaining businesses will retreat to the valley and if they could just move the airport Anchorage will become just one big slum. Coming soon, to a theater near you.

  13. Anchorage needs to re-imagine the entire area with a new sports complex that has a 3,500 attendance ice sheet for college and minor league hockey and two 1,000 seat ice sheets for recreational all in one building set in the current parking lot. Build much better, bigger and more locker/shower rooms. Tear down the Sully after use as a homeless sheletr and Boeke when the new ice is finished. The Old Sully and Boeke area used for parking and Seward Highway Expansion. Build a new Mulchay by C Street and a new Park with Parking lot in between. Leverage Rasmussen Money with Federal Grants. Get to it Mayor and Assembly and start working together!

    • The idiots on the assembly just GAVE Rasmuson Foundation $12 million! This town is going into the crapper because people don’t want to fix anything, just build new, less efficient facilities.

    • “Anchorage needs to re-imagine……..”
      Insanity. Anchorage is already imagining way too much and accomplishing way too little. Build a new sports arena, and the imaginers will simply turn it into a new drunk tank. The issue isn’t that we need a new sports arena; we need a bigger drunk tank that keeps the drunks inside.

  14. NORTHWAY MALL. Loads of potential. Moreover, it is vacant. Ready to use.
    Not strictly in a residential neighborhood. The hockey communities and Sullivan center can rest assured. The large residential area on top of major highways will not be disturbed.
    Wonderful parking available. On a busline with space for layover and transport to existing “social and health” facilities.
    Plenty of room for other social service offices. Great place for a “library”, aka “gathering place” in addition.
    As the assembly, has abridged existing laws, taking this property by imminent domain is a piece of cake.
    Think NORTHWAY MALL.

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