The Anchorage Assembly will hold a special meeting on Monday to continue hearing the public’s opinion of its plan to house homeless at the Sullivan Arena and the Golden Lion Hotel, which will concentrate the homeless problem of Anchorage into a midtown area near Rogers Park, College Village, and Geneva Woods. The meeting will be from 6-8 pm at the Assembly Chambers in the Loussac Library, and the Assembly is expected to vote on the plan that appears to have been developed behind the scenes by the Assembly’s leftist majority in violation of the Alaska Open Meetings Act.
The Assembly majority conducted a special meeting on Sunday to hear from those who are not able to attend the Monday meeting due to the start of Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year that started Sunday evening.
Components of the Assembly’s plan include:
- 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
In recent days, documents have come to light that show Assemblywoman Meg Zaletel, who runs the Anchorage Coalition to End Homelessness, promising the public that the Golden Lion would never be used as a homeless shelter.
The Assembly majority delayed the building of the navigation center, which was the agreed-upon path forward by the Assembly and by Mayor Dave Bronson after a year of negotiations, and which was supposed to be ready for this winter. Instead, the Assembly majority double-crossed the mayor earlier this month, and now wants to put homeless people next to a neighborhood full of children, and a block away from a preschool.
The mayor would have to approve the plan, however, and the navigation center is already under construction.