State speeds up Crystal Lake reconstruction process
The Crystal Lake Hatchery reconstruction project has one less hurdle to jump through after Kim Rice, Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities deputy commissioner, delegated authority to the Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADFG) in order to expedite project completion.
“(DOT&PF) generally oversees state facility projects such as the Crystal Lake Hatchery,” Rice wrote in a letter to Petersburg Mayor Mark Jensen. “However, because DOT&PF is aware of the critical nature of this facility to the community of Petersburg, my staff has issued a Delegation of Authority and a Waiver for Alternative Procurement…”
Southern Southeast Regional Aquaculture Association (SSRAA) operates and maintains the hatchery and ADFG owns the facility. The two agencies requested the one-time delegation of authority in order to speed up the process and minimize the risk of losing a one-year production cycle.
The hatchery’s incubation facility burned down last March. Around 200,000 coho bound for Blind Slough were lost along with more than 500,000 king eggs that would have been released in Neets Bay and Anita Bay.
To make up for the loss, some coho that were scheduled for release this year won’t be let go until 2015.
Petersburg Borough Assembly member Cindi Lagoudakis read Rice’s letter during last Monday’s assembly meeting and said it was good news for Petersburg.
“It should expedite the building of that facility, and we’re hoping it will also reduce the costs,” Lagoudakis said.
The rebuilding is projected to cost between $3.5 and $4.5