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Note: The Consolidation Petition is presented below in its entirety, as a public service by ITA. You need to know what some people have in mind for you, before you can fight it. ITA has voted to oppose this effort, for the sake of taxpayers of the Fairbanks North Star Borough and the City of Fairbanks, Alaska.line4.gif (2501 bytes)

PETITION FOR CONSOLIDATION OF
THE CITY OF FAIRBANKS AND
THE FAIRBANKS NORTH STAR BOROUGH

OCTOBER, 1998

INDEX

Section Title

  • Consolidation Proposal
  • Population
  • Reasons for Consolidation
  • Legal Description & Map of Boundaries of Proposed Borough
  • Legal Description & Map of City of Fairbanks & FNSB
  • Composition and Apportionment of Assembly
  • Area wide and Non-areawide Powers and Services
  • Areawide and Non-areawide Taxes
  • Service Areas and Service Area Taxes
  • Taxable Value of Real and Personal Property
  • Three Year Operating Budget
  • Voting Rights Information
  • Brief on Satisfaction of Standards
  • Transition Plan
  • Information Relating to Public Notice
  • Petitioners Representative
  • Affidavit of Petitioner's Representative
      1.  

    EXHIBITS

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    PETITION FOR CONSOLIDATION OF THE CITY OF FAIRBANKS AND FAIRBANKS NORTH STAR BOROUGH

    To: The State Of Alaska, Local Boundary Commission:

    The petitioners hereby request that the Local Boundary Commission grant this petition for consolidation resulting in the dissolution of the home rule city and second class borough described herein and their incorporation as a second class borough under the provisions of Article X, Sections 1, 3 and 5 of Alaska's constitution; AS 29.06.090 - AS 29.06.170; 19 AAC 10.240 - 19 AAC 10.250; 19 AAC 10.400- I9AAC 10.660; and I9AAC 10.900- I9AAC 10.990.

    1. CONSOLIDATION PROPOSAL: The petitioners hereby petition to dissolve the municipalities named below and to incorporate through consolidation, the second class borough retaining the name Fairbanks North Star Borough. The new municipality may use the name Municipality of Fairbanks hereinafter called Municipality and described in this petition:

    Municipalities to be Dissolved by Consolidation:

    The City of Fairbanks

    The Fairbanks North Star Borough

    Second Class Borough to be Incorporated by consolidation

    The Municipality of Fairbanks

    2. POPULATION. The population of the municipalities proposed for consolidation are estimated to be as follows:

    • The Fairbanks North Star Borough...........82,278
      The City of Fairbanks...................................31,850

    • 3. REASONS FOR CONSOLIDATION. A summary of the principal reasons for the consolidation proposal is provided as Exhibit A.

      4. LEGAL DESCRIPTION AND MAP OF BOUNDARIES OF PROPOSED MUNICIPALITY TO BE INCORPORATED THROUGH CONSOLIDATION: A written metes and bounds legal description of the boundaries of the municipality proposed to be incorporated by consolidation is presented as Exhibit B-i. A map showing the boundaries of the municipality proposed to be incorporated by consolidation is presented as Exhibit B-2. The boundaries described and shown on the map are identical to the existing boundaries of the Fairbanks North Star Borough.

      5. LEGAL DESCRIPTION AND MAP OF BOUNDARIES OF EXISTING MUNICIPALITIES PROPOSED TO BE DISSOLVED THROUGH CONSOLIDATION: Exhibit C-1 provides a written metes and bounds legal description of the boundaries of the City of Fairbanks which would be dissolved through consolidation. Exhibit C-2 provides a map showing the boundaries of the City of Fairbanks. A written metes and bounds description and map of the boundaries of the Fairbanks North Star Borough, which would also be dissolved through consolidation is provided as Exhibits B-1 and B-2.

      6. COMPOSITION AND APPORTIONMENT OF THE ASSEMBLY. Exhibit D presents the proposed apportionment and composition of the Assembly for the proposed municipality to be incorporated through consolidation. The proposed apportionment and composition is consistent with the equal representation standards of the Constitution of the United States and complies with AS 29.20.060. Unless modified by the Local Boundary Commission on a reasonable basis following hearings on the consolidation proposal, the Assembly will be comprised of the number of members and apportioned as set out in Exhibit D until the composition or apportionment of the Assembly is lawfully changed.

      7. AREAWIDE AND NON-AREAWIDE POWERS AND SERVICES. Listed below are the services proposed to be provided and the powers proposed to be exercised by the municipality on an areawide and non-areawide basis. To the extent that voter approval is required to grant the powers and authority for areawide or non-areawide services listed in this petition, as may be amended on a reasonable basis by the Local Boundary Commission following a public hearing on this petition, voter approval will be deemed to have been granted upon voter approval of the consolidation.

    • Areawide powers and services:

      1. Property assessment and tax collection

      2. Air pollution control

      3. Public Schools

      4. Disaster and civil defense

      5. Planning, zoning and platting

      6. Solid waste disposal

      7. Solid waste collection

      8. Animal control

      9. Parks and recreation

      10. Flood control

      11. Transportation system

      12. Child care assistance

      13. Library

      14. Limited health and social service powers

      15. Enhanced 911 system

      Non-areawide powers and services:

      1. Fireworks control

      2. Emergency medical services

      3. Economic development

      Service area powers and services:

      Service area powers are exercised in specific areas upon petition and adoption by vote of the residents of that area. These powers vary from area to area and may include:

      1. Road construction and maintenance

      2. Fire protection

      3. Streetlights

      4. Water and sewer

      Proposed Urban Service Area:

      1. Fire protection

      2. Law enforcement

      3. Environmental services

      4. Building department

      5. Engineering department

      6. Public works department

      8. AREAWIDE AND NON-AREAWIDE TAXES. The type and rate of each areawide and non-areawide tax proposed to be initially levied by the municipality is listed below. To the extent that voter approval is required to grant authority to levy proposed areawide taxes listed in this petition, as may be amended on a reasonable basis by the Local Boundary Commission following a public hearing on this petition, it will be deemed to have been granted upon voter approval of the consolidation.

    AREAWIDE TAX TYPE TAX RATE
    Property tax 13.775 mills
    Solid waste collection 1.166 mills
    Bed tax 8%
    NON-AREAWIDE TAX TYPE TAX RATE
    Property tax 511 mills
    PROPOSED URBAN SERVICE AREA TAX TYPE TAX RATE
    Property tax 5.99 mills
    Liquor tax 5%
    Tobacco tax 8%

    9. SERVICE AREAS AND SERVICE AREA TAXES. Service areas may be established to exercise powers and provide services that will not be exercised or provided on an areawide or non-areawide basis or those that will be provided or exercised on a higher, lower or otherwise different level than on an areawide or non-areawide basis.

    A written metes and bounds legal description of the boundaries of each proposed initial service area of the municipality is presented as Exhibit E-1. A map showing the boundaries of each proposed initial service area is presented as Exhibit E-2. A statement of the proposed powers to be exercised, services to be provided and taxes to be levied within each of the proposed service areas is presented as Exhibit E-3. To the extent that voter approval is required to establish service areas listed in Exhibit E-1, to authorize the exercise of service area powers listed in Exhibit E-3 and to authorize the levy of service area taxes listed in Exhibit E-3, as may be amended on a reasonable basis by the Local Boundary Commission following a public hearing on this petition, voter approval will be deemed to have been granted upon voter approval of the consolidation.

    10. TAXABLE VALUE OF REAL PROPERTY. The following is the assessed or estimated value of taxable property in the territory proposed for consolidation:

    Areawide:
    real property: $3,268,821,543
    state oil & gas 300,004,500
    Non-areawide:
    real property: $2,110,234,285
    state oil & gas 300,004,500
    City of Fairbanks:
    real property $1,084,370,672
    City of North Pole:
    Note: The City of North Pole is not included in the Consolidation Petition and the following assessments are for reference only.
    real property $ 171,347,896
    Service Areas: Solid Waste collection District (less the City of Fairbanks only):

    real property

    2,277,832,033

    state oil & gas

    300,004,500

    Chena Goldstream Fire:

    real property 197,718,957

    Ester Volunteer Fire:

    real property 48,933,370
    state oil & gas 384,350

    North Star Volunteer Fire:

    real property 429,325,417
    state oil & gas 27,613,740

    Steese Volunteer Fire:

    real property 254,440,796
    state oil & gas 8,253,110

    University Fire:

    real property 420,526,022

    Ballerina Sewer & Water:

    real property 1,435,588

    University West Street Lights:

    Real property 64,714,461

    All other Service Areas:

    Real property 840,139,567
    state oil & Gas 21,275,050
    The following three pages list the 1996 property taxes & 1997 total taxable value, less exemptions on the Fairbanks North Star Borough service areas. [NOTE: WE HAVE NOT POSTED THESE PAGES DUE TO THEIR COMPLEXITY. The heading reads "1996 Property Taxes & 1997 Total Taxable Value 1999 SRS & 1999 SC Application Road Service Areas. The chart has four columns, "Service Area", "Taxable Value", "Pipeline Value", "1997 Net Total Taxable Value." Service areas total was 818,863,617 taxable value, 21,275,950 pipeline value, and 840,139,567 net total taxable value.]

     11. THREE YEAR OPERATING BUDGET. Exhibit F presents a proposed operating budget for the municipality projecting sources of incomes and items of expenditure through the first three full fiscal years of operation.

    12. VOTING RIGHTS INFORMATION. Information relevant to consideration of the petition in terms of the federal Voting Rights Act is provided in Exhibit G. This information includes the following:

    (A) The extent to which the territory proposed for consolidation excludes minorities while it includes non-minorities.
    (B) Whether the electoral system of the proposed municipality fairly reflects minority voting strength.
    (C) The extent to which minorities participated in the development of the consolidation proposal.
    (D) Statement concerning the extent to which English in written and spoken forms is not understood by minorities at least 18 years of age who reside in the territory proposed for consolidation.

    13. BRIEF. Exhibit H presents a statement fully explaining how the proposed consolidation satisfies the standards set out in Article X, 1, 3 and 5 of Alaska's constitution; AS 29.06.130; AS 29.05.031; 19 AA10.240 - 19 AA10.250; 19 AA10.045 - 19 AA10.060; and 19 AA10.910. The brief references each of these standards and explains why the proposed consolidation is good public policy. The brief demonstrates that:

    1) The proposed consolidation promotes maximum local self-qovernment with a minimum of local government units in accordance with Article X, 1 of the Constitution of the State of Alaska.

    2) The boundaries of the proposed municipality embrace an area and population with common interests to the maximum degree possible in accordance with Article X, 3 of the Constitution of the State of Alaska.

    3) The population of the proposed municipality is interrelated and integrated as to its social, cultural, and economic activities, and is large and stable enough to support a municipality in accordance with AS29.05.031(1), I9AAC 10.045 and I9AAC 10.050.

    4) The boundaries of the proposed municipality conform generally to natural geography and include all areas necessary for full development of municipal services in accordance with AS 29.05.031(2) and 19 AAC 10.060.

    5) The economy of the area within the proposed municipality includes the human and financial resources capable of providing municipal services in accordance with AS 29.05.031(3) and 19 AAC 10.055. Elements of the economy specifically addressed include: land use, property values, total economic base, total personal income, resource and commercial development, anticipated functions, anticipated expenses and anticipated income of the proposed municipality.

    6) Land, water, and air transportation facilities allow the communication and exchange necessary for the development of integrated government in accordance with AS 29.05.031(4) and 19 AAC 10.045(b).

    7) Incorporation of the proposed municipality through consolidation will not deny any person the enjoyment of any civil or political right because of race, color, creed, sex or national origin in accordance with I9AAC 10.910.

    14. TRANSITION PLAN. Exhibit I presents a practical plan demonstrating the intent and capability of the proposed municipality to begin providing essential services [as defined by 19 AAC I 0.990(a)(7)] to the territory proposed for consolidation within the shortest practicable time after consolidation. It also provides a practical plan for the assumption of all-relevant and appropriate powers, rights, and functions presently exercised by the City of Fairbanks and the Fairbanks North Star Borough and other relevant entities within the territory proposed for consolidation. Further, it provides a practical plan for the transfer and integration of all relevant and appropriate assets and liabilities of existing municipal governments and other relevant entities within the territory proposed for consolidation. The plan was developed in consultation with officials of municipal governments and other relevant entities within the territory proposed for incorporation through consolidation. The plan complies with the provisions of AS 29.06.150 and AS 29.06.160.

    15. INFORMATION RELATING TO PUBLIC NOTICE. Exhibit J offers information relevant to the provision of public notice of the consolidation proceedings. Included are details about local media, municipal governments within and adjacent to the territory proposed for consolidation, places for posting public notices relating to the proposed consolidation, the location where the petition may be reviewed by the public, and parties that may warrant individual notice of the consolidation proceedings.

    16. PETITIONER'S REPRESENTATIVE. The petitioners designate the following individual to act as its primary representative on all matters regarding the proposed consolidation:

    Don Lowell
    P.O. Box 71114
    Fairbanks, AK 99707
    Phone: 907 488 2879
    Fax: 907488 2545

    17. PETITION INFORMATION & ACCURACY. An affidavit of the petitioner's representative affirming that the information in this petition is true and accurate is provided in Exhibit K.  

    DATED this _______ day of___________________ ,199__ 
    By:_____________________________________________
    Petitioners' Representative

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    EXHIBIT A

    Statement of Principal Reasons for the Proposal to Consolidate the City of Fairbanks and the Fairbanks North Star Borough

    1. Consolidation will promote maximum local self-government with a minimum of local governmental units. Article X, Section 1 of the Alaska Constitution states that the purpose of the Local Government Article of the constitution is to "provide a maximum of local self- government with a minimum of local governmental units. The proposed consolidation will dissolve the Home Rule City of Fairbanks and the Second Class Fairbanks North Star Borough to form one consolidated local government. The proposed second class status of the consolidated municipality wilt meet the constitutional intent by maintaining local self-government while reducing the number of local government units.

    2. Consolidation will encourage more efficient and effective local government. There is an inherent inefficiency in operating two local governments in an area with a population under 83,000 people. Consolidation will reduce the number of mayors, law department, finance, clerk, personnel and purchasing offices from two to one. A 1993 study of consolidating the City and Borough of Ketchikan, a community one fifth the size of Fairbanks, estimated there would be a reduction of eight elected officials and 6.5 staff members for a savings of $626,000. In Fairbanks, it is estimated consolidation of the two governments would save over two million dollars annually through reduction of elected, executive and other duplicative positions. These savings can be directly translated to improved public safety for all borough residents and visitors through safer streets, walks and neighborhoods. Additionally, consolidation offers efficiencies in data processing and in maintenance of buildings, grounds, vehicles & equipment. Consolidation will also promote a more effective local government by eliminating the confusion that exists with separate city and borough governments in intergovernmental affairs, as in cases involving interaction with state and federal agencies. Consolidation will allow the local government to speak with one voice regarding local, regional and state issues such as transportation, economic development, capital projects, and planning. Communities that have unified have stated that while there were some savings in administration and legislative costs, the real benefit was in increased capacity of the municipality to respond to the wishes of the people and to deal with outside forces.      

    3. Consolidation is a better long term solution to local government issues. .1/2b~ Since the Fairbanks North Star Borough was formed in 1964, there have been several w ~ attempts to resolve what many perceived as local government problems. These proposals were in the form of two petitions regarding unification of the cities of Fairbanks and North Pole with the Fairbanks North Star Borough. An attempt was also 441i~#;i made to detach a portion of the Fairbanks North Star Borough and form a second ~ borough with expanded boundaries. The latest proposal to consolidate the City of Fairbanks and the Fairbanks North Star Borough was made in 1993. With the sale of the water, sewer, power and telephone Systems by the City Fairbanks in 1997, the stable & respected Borough administration and assembly can manage the few remaining city services more efficiently, effectively and economically.

    4. Consolidation would boost the economic climate of the area. Business firms conducting feasibility studies on locating to a community, review population totals and the number of governmental agencies they must deal with. A single municipality with a large population is more attractive to a firm planning expansion than two local governments. Currently Fairbanks is looked at as a small city, when compared to Anchorage, a unified municipality. When consolidated, a community gives a more accurate reflection of actual size and population, and comparisons are more favorable. The large population of a consolidated community is an advantage in dealing with governmental or private agencies for grants such as the Department of Community and Regional Affairs and dealing with other entrepreneurs considering entrance into Fairbanks and Interior markets.

    5. Consolidation would equalize areawide costs in maintaining solid waste collection. ~ Currently non-areawide and City of North Pole taxpayers are paying the total cost of # maintaining borough solid waste collection sites. City of Fairbanks residents and small businesses frequently deposit solid waste in the dumpsters without charge. This ~ consolidation proposal would change the non-areawide and City of North Pole solid waste collection district to an areawide service. The new Fairbanks Service Area would still retain the higher level of door to door refuse pickup.

    6. Consolidation would equalize non-areawide costs in economic development. Presently both the City and the Borough non-areawide areas budget for economic development with little coordination of effort or goals. Under consolidation, economic development will be a non-areawide coordinated function encompassing the entire municipality except the City of North Pole.

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    EXHIBIT H

    BRIEF Brief in support of the petition to consolidate the home rule City of Fairbanks and the second class Fairbanks North Star Borough

    BACKGROUND

    The constitutional convention delegates who designed Alaska's system of local government considered a borough government without cities to be the optimum form of local government. To that end, following legislative mandated boroughs in 1963) the Cities and Boroughs of Sitka, Juneau and Anchorage all unified to one local government by 1975. Attempts to unify the Cities of North Pole and Fairbanks with the Fairbanks North Star Borough were made in 1973 and 1987. In 1973 a Unification Charter Commission was elected but the Charter was voted down. In 1987 a Unification Charter Commission was voted down. A move to consolidate the City of Fairbanks and the Fairbanks North Star Borough failed to get on the ballot in 1993. That year, the Local Boundary Commission rejected a petition to form a new borough from a portion of the existing Fairbanks North Star Borough that would have boundaries extended to the Canadian border. With the sale of the City of Fairbanks' telephone, power, sewer and water systems in 19971 numerous news articles, letters to the editor, editorials, radio talk show callers and civic groups reiterated the need to take a new look at consolidation of the city with the borough. New city budget and management problems following the sale added to the public's request to consider consolidation or merger of local government. In April 1998, a group of 19 city and borough citizens met to map out a plan to combine the City of Fairbanks and the Fairbanks North Star Borough through dissolution, merger or consolidation. After meeting with State officials, reviewing other petitions, regulations and law, a decision was made to petition the Local Boundary Commission to hold an election to consolidate the two governments. The recommended petition would retain the second class structure of the Borough with the city becoming a service area of the new municipality.

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    Consolidation Advantages to City residents:

    Consolidation of the City and Borough will reduce the number of local governments and bureaucracy by 50% and provide some cost savings. Consolidation will provide a more effe6tive, responsive and efficient local government and a new, more powerful voice to the legislature. The assets of the Permanent Fund will transfer to a trust reserved for the benefit and use of the new Urban Service Area. New businesses, looking to expand, will view favorably the new Municipality's total population. Consolidation advantages to Borough residents outside Cities:

    Petition for Incorporation of a Second Class borough Through Consolidation 10/23198

    I Consolidation of the City and Borough will provide a new, more powerful voice to the legislature. New businesses looking to expand will look more favorable on dealing with one local government with a larger reported market. Consolidation will provide some overall cost savings including solid waste collection and economic development, but the main advantage is a more responsive, effective and efficient one-stop local government

    Introduction: The proposal to consolidate the home rule City of Fairbanks and the Fairbanks North Star Borough meets the standards for municipal incorporation outlined in AS 29.06.130 and 19 AAC 10.240. Principles that are fundamental to the proposed consolidation of the City of Fairbanks and the Fairbanks North Star Borough are set out in Article X of Alaska's Constitution. This brief addresses the constitutional, statutory, and regulatory provisions to demonstrate that the proposed consolidation of the two existing local governments in Fairbanks warrants approval by the Local Boundary Commission. The petitioners stress that the Fairbanks North Star Borough has been in existence for thirty4our years. Since this consolidation proposal seeks to incorporate a second class borough with corporate boundaries identical to those of the existing second class Fairbanks North Star Borough, the petitioners strongly believe that presumption is warranted that this consolidation proposal satisfies all of the standards for borough incorporation. Consolidation will promote maximum local self-government with a minimum of local governmental units Article X, Section 1 of Alaska's Constitution states that the purpose of the Local Government Article of the constitution is to provide for maximum local self- government with a minimum of local government units". Consolidation of the home rule City of Fairbanks and the second class Fairbanks North Star Borough will accomplish that purpose by joining two existing local governments into a single new government thereby promoting a minimum of local government units. Consolidation would reduce by 50% the number of municipal corporations serving Fairbanks. The boundaries of the proposed municipality embrace an area and population with common interests to the maximum degree possible in accordance with Article X 3 of the Constitution of the State of Alaska The 1963 legislature mandated the creation of Boroughs in 1964. The current boundaries of the Fairbanks North Star Borough encompass far less territory than that originally mandated by the legislature. The Local Boundary Commission and the 1964 legislature approved the detachment of 11,054 square miles originally included within the Borough. At the same time 1,333 square       2 miles not originally included1 were annexed to the Borough. Fort Wainwright was annexed to the Borough in 1973 and Eielson Air Force Base was annexed in 1983. The Borough represents social, political and economic diversity within those boundaries. The Borough contains the commercial, transportation and government centers where local and outlying community residents shop for goods and services. Local residents commute to their places of employment, educate their children, attend cultural and social events, and participate in other political, governmental and economic activities. With few exceptions, almost the entire population of the Fairbanks North Star Borough resides on the road system within the Tanana Valley. The Borough is served daily by several major airlines and rural communities are served through a hub from the Fairbanks International Airport. Rail and bus routes as well as a major highway network connect the Borough. Utility firms provide electric, water, sewer, telephone, cellular and pager services to all City residents. Residents outside cities have all the above services with the exception of community sewer and water and they rely on wells and septic systems. A few service areas have community water and sewer. A major daily newspaper and several AM, FM and TV stations serves the Borough and outlying communities. The Fairbanks North Star Borough has produced a "Comprehensive Plan" for land use including goals, policies, objectives and maps. The "Comprehensive Plan" is the framework for citizens and officials to make decisions related to the use of land and as a guide for land development, preservation and use. The Fairbanks North Star Borough's Community Planning Department publishes a "Community Research Quarterly", a review of socio-economic trends. The "Summer 1998 Quarterly", attached to the back of this petition, lists the areas economic indicators, employment, housing, cost of living, population and social conditions. Four pages from the "Summer 1997', edition concerning assessed value of property and census tracts are attached to this exhibit. Consolidation will not deny any person the enjoyment of any civil or political right because of race, color, creed, sex or national origin. There is no evidence to suggest that consolidation of the two local governments in Fairbanks will result in any violation of the federal Voting Rights Act. Consolidation will not alter the boundaries of the Fairbanks North Star Borough. Further, the consolidation has been proposed to serve legitimate needs and to accomplish legitimate public policy objectives.  

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    EXHIBIT I

    TRANSITION PLAN

    This transition plan demonstrates the intent and capability to implement orderly, efficient and economical consolidation within the shortest practical time, not to exceed two years, following consolidation of the City of Fairbanks and the Fairbanks North Star Borough. The plan also provides details concerning the manner in which the new municipality will assume all relevant and appropriate powers1 duties, rights, and functions presently exercised by the municipalities to be dissolved through consolidation. Additionally, it provides details concerning the manner in which the new municipality will assume and integrate all relevant and appropriate assets and liabilities of the City of Fairbanks. In accordance with AS 29.06.150 the proposed municipality will succeed to all powers, duties, rights, assets and liabilities of the municipalities to be dissolved by consolidation. Additionally, in accordance with AS 29.06.160 ,the ordinances, resolutions, regulations, procedures and orders of the municipalities dissolved through consolidation remain in force in their respective territories until superseded by the action of the new municipality

    A. CONSULTATION WITH OFFICIALS: 19 AAC 10.900(b) requires that this transition plan be prepared in consultation with the officials of each existing borough and city proposed for consolidation. The following is a summary of the manner in which this requirement was satisfied. Officials of the City of Fairbanks and the Fairbanks North Star Borough were consulted during the development of this transition plan and the petition. Meetings, requests for information, interviews and phone conversations were made with both Mayors) Council members, Presiding Officer and Assembly persons, Clerks1 Engineering, Fire, Police, Finance, Legal, Community Research, Planning, Public Works, Assessing, Service Area staff, former elected officials and others.

    B. EFFECTIVE DATE. AS 29.06.140 provides that, following voter approval of consolidation, the director of elections sets a date for election of officials of the new municipality. The election date, which shall be not less than 60 or more than 90 days after the election order, is the effective date for the consolidation.

    C. POWERS AND DUTIES OF EXISTING CITY PROPOSED TO BE CONSOLIDATED. The following is a list of the current powers and duties of the City of Fairbanks.

      • Fire protection
      • 2. Law enforcement
      • 3. Environmental services
      • 4. Building Department
      • 5. Engineering Department
      • 6. Public Works Department

    E. CHANGE IN POWERS AND DUTIES: The following is an explanation of how consolidation would affect the delivery of the current services listed in paragraphs C and D of this transition plan. The most significant change will occur in four areas:

    1. A new mayor, assembly and school board will be elected.

    2. The executive and administrative departments of the city and borough will be merged.

    3. Solid waste collection will become an areawide service.

    4. The Municipality will establish an Urban Service Area to provide, on a service area and non-areawide basis1 all urban services, now supplied by the city.

    Local government powers:

    Consolidation would change the City of Fairbanks from a home rule city to a service area of the Municipality of Fairbanks. The home rule designation held by the City of Fairbanks allowed the city to exercise all legislative powers not prohibited by law or charter. A home rule municipality may extend a power allowed by law or charter without a vote of the residents.

    The Municipality of Fairbanks would remain a second class borough. A second class borough acquires additional areawide power by transfer of the power by a city (such as parks and recreation) or by holding an areawide election on the question. New or additional powers for non-areawide or service areas also require the approval by a majority of the voters residing in the concerned area. The powers granted to a second class borough by state statutes are similar to home rule powers in many respects; AS 29.35.210; AS 29.35.250; AS29.35.490.

    Areawide Powers

    Areawide powers are those services, which will be provided throughout the municipality. No existing borough areawide powers will be eliminated by the consolidation and no new powers or services will be added with the exception that solid waste collection will become an areawide power instead of non-areawide and City of North Pole.

    Non-areawide Powers

    Non-areawide Powers are those services which will be provided in the municipality outside the City of North Pole and include Fireworks Control, Economic Development and Emergency Medical Service.

    Service Areas

    The existing 116 Borough Service Areas will not be affected by consolidation. The services provided, the service boundaries, the method of funding and the level of service will not be changed.

    School District

    The educational system in the municipality will not be affected by consolidation. Education is currently provided by the Fairbanks North Star Borough School District through an elected petition for Incorporation of a Second Class Borough Through Consolidation I 0123196

    Borough school board that administers the school system

    Consolidation requires the election of a new school board. The school board and municipal Assembly will establish the total amount of local funding, as is the current practice. Local, State and Federal funding or the amount of local contribution will not be affected by the consolidation. The consolidation will not alter school district staffing requirements and will not change collective bargaining agreements or retirement plans. (See Exhibit D, No. E.)

    City of North Pole

    The city of North Pole will not be affected by consolidation. The city's relationship with the new Municipality of Fairbanks will be the same as with the present Fairbanks North Star Borough. The municipality will establish a new Urban Service Area to provide existing city services on a service area and non-areawide basis as follows:

    Law enforcement

    Law enforcement for the City of Fairbanks will become a service of the new Urban Service Area. City Police Department employees will become municipal employees who provide a service, law enforcement, only within the service area. The Alaska State Troopers will remain the primary law enforcement agency outside this service area and the City of North Pole. Any mutual aid agreements will not be affected and remain in force. Law enforcement will be paid from tax revenues generated from within the service area and with grants from other sources.

    Fire protection

    Fire protection for the City of Fairbanks will become a service of the new Urban Service Area. City Fire Department employees will become municipal employees who will provide a service only to the Urban Service Area. Mutual aid agreements will not be affected and will remain in force. Fire protection will be paid from tax revenues generated from within the service area and with grants from other sources.

    Emergency Medical Service

    Emergency Medical Service provided by the City Fire Department will continue to be provided by the fire department within the service area on a contract basis with the municipality. City Emergency Medical Service employees will become municipal employees who will provide a service only to the Urban Service Area. Existing mutual aid agreements will not be affected and remain in place. Emergency Medical Service will be paid for by non- areawide taxes and grants from other sources.

    Public Works

    The operations of the Fairbanks Public Works Department including; road construction, maintenance and operation including sidewalks, storm drainage, culverts, street lighting and solid waste collection will be transferred to the new Urban Service Area. The employees of the Public Works Department will be become municipal employees. Public Works operations will be paid for from tax revenues raised within the service area from grants and reimbursable services agreements.  

    Solid waste collection

    The new municipality will adjust solid waste collection taxes, from non-areawide and City of North Pole, to areawide. The Urban Service Area will continue to provide a higher level of refuse collection through door to door pickup service.

    Environmental Services

    The Environmental Services functions provided by the City of Fairbanks will be transferred to the new Urban Service Area. Environmental Services, known as the City Sanitarians Office, enforces State of Alaska and city environmental sanitation regulations. Environmental Services employees will become municipal employees. Funding for Environmental Services is paid by the State of Alaska and the service area provides office space and vehicles.

    Building Department

    The Building Department provides review of building plans, issues building permits for electrical, mechanical and plumbing1 conducts building inspections to assure the facilities meet city and state building codes and issues certificates of occupancy. The Building Department employees will become municipal employees who will provide a service only within the Urban Service Area. Tax revenues raised within the service area will fund these operations.

    Engineering Department

     The Engineering Department provides engineering services for maintaining the City's infrastructure and plans, designs and administers new public construction projects. The Department provides assistance to the Public Works Department including right-of-way, design and environmental hazardous materials services. The operations of the Engineering Division will be transferred to the new Urban Service Area. Engineering department employees will become municipal employees. These operations will be paid for from reimbursable service agreements and from tax revenues raised within the service area.

    IF. SCHEDULE FOR INTEGRATION OF ASSETS, POWERS AND DUTIES: The following is the planned schedule for the integration of powers and duties of the predecessor municipalities.

    Municipal ordinances

    The City of Fairbanks and the Fairbanks North Star Borough each have municipal laws or codes, which govern the activities of the two separate governments. All ordinances, resolutions1 regulations, orders and rules in effect in the former governments will continue in full force and effect until superseded by the new municipality. There are several areas of duplication or overlap that will need to be eliminated immediately, including the rules of the governing body, the personnel ordinances, and ordinances relating to purchasing, finance and elections. The Mayor, in consultation with the Law Department, will review both municipal codes and designate which code or interpretation applies. The designation is effective immediately and will be communicated to the assembly. The designation is approved unless the assembly, within 21 days, adopts a contrary interpretation by resolution.  

    The new municipal assembly may adopt a new ordinance to address specific needs or conflicts.

    Existing Assets, Obligations and Contracts

    All rights, titles, actions, suits1 franchises1 contracts1 assets and liabilities and all civil, criminal or administrative proceedings will continue unaffected by the consolidation. The new consolidated government will be the legal successor to the city and borough governments for these purposes. The new municipality will honor existing contracts and other obligations, including evergreen clauses', until their term expires or is modified by the assembly. The assets of the city, except the permanent fund1 shall transfer to the consolidated municipality. The assets of the permanent fund shall transfer to a trust for the benefit of and use by the Urban Service Area. The trust shall be established by the assembly in a manner consistent with current provisions governing the state permanent fund.

    Existing Service Areas

    Prior to consolidation there were 116 service areas that provided a variety of local government services. There will be no interruption of services in existing service areas due to consolidation. All of these preexisting service areas will remain in effect and operation after consolidation. No boundary change or change to the powers or duties of these preexisting service areas will occur as a result of the consolidation. The composition of the service area boards will not be affected by the consolidation. The existing board members will continue to serve through their terms under preexisting borough law.

    New Urban Service Area

    The municipality will establish the Urban Service Area to provide those services formerly ~ provided by the City of Fairbanks The new municipality through service area and non- areawide powers will provide existing services. The new assembly for the consolidated municipality may provide for an appointed or elected board to supervise the furnishing of special services in this service area.

    Employees

    The approval of the consolidation petition by the voters creates the new consolidated municipality. The election of the assembly and mayor will constitute the new municipal government. Employees of the former city and borough governments become employees of the new Municipality of Fairbanks. ~ consolidation. The city and borough have a few overlapping or duplicate services and positions. Most all the duplication occurs at the upper administrative level of government. Any employees whose positions are eliminated by the plan of organization will be eligible for reassignment to available positions for which they are qualified. Pension plans, retirement plans and other benefits for current employees under collective bargaining agreements, personnel rules, or other legal or contractual provisions, in effect on the date of ratification of the consolidation will not be changed nor diminished. The new Municipality will inherit the existing union contracts and shall continue to be governed under the Public Employees Relations Act, AS 23.40. Unionized employees in the city and borough are represented by different collective bargaining organizations. The re-negotiation of new   6 union contracts or employee votes to change representation is not necessary for consolidation.

    Elected Officials

    Following voter approval of consolidation, the Division of Elections sets a date for ejection of a new mayor and assembly and a new school board to replace the former Fairbanks North Star Borough and City of Fairbanks elected officials. Seven elected positions are eliminated, those of the city mayor and city council.

    Executive Organization

    The greatest amount of duplication in full time positions between the two former governments will be in the executive level of government administration. Duplicated positions in the former city and borough governments will be integrated. The following executive offices are duplicated and will be combined by the consolidation. Borough Clerk and City Clerk

    Borough Attorney and City Attorney

    Borough Chief Financial Officer and City Finance Officer

    Borough Personnel Officer and City Personnel Officer

    Borough Purchasing Officer and City Purchasing Officer

    The Borough Clerk and supporting staff serve under the appointing authority of the Assembly. For the purpose of the election of the first assembly and mayor, the Borough Clerk shall act ex officio as Municipal Clerk and the election ordinances of the Fairbanks North Star Borough shall apply.

    The Borough Attorney is appointed by the mayor and confirmed by the assembly. To assure a smooth transition, the Borough Attorney shall act ex officio as Municipal Attorney.

    Executive Plan

    Not later than thirty days after the new assembly and mayor are ejected, the mayor will submit to the assembly a detailed plan or organization of the executive branch. The plan will combine the overlapping services of the former separate borough and city administrations. The proposed plan will become law 20 days after submitted unless sooner adopted with or without amendment or rejected by the assembly. If the proposed plan is rejected, the mayor shall submit an alternate plan to the assembly within 15 days of the rejection. If, within 20 days of submission of the alternate plan, no plan of organization has been adopted by the assembly, the alternate proposal submitted by the mayor becomes law. All preexisting executive departments will remain in existence, except for the city mayor's office, until the mayor's executive plan takes effect.

    Other Elections

    No former government shall hold an election after voters approve consolidation of the City of Fairbanks and the Fairbanks North Star Borough. Any election concerning bond propositions   7 set for such a date is postponed until the new assembly sets a new date for the bond proposition

    Budget Transition

    The City of Fairbanks and the Fairbanks North Star Borough operate on different fiscal years. The City fiscal year begins on January 1 and ends December 3. The Borough fiscal year coincides with the State fiscal year from July 1 to June 30. In order to consolidate the financial operations of the two governments the two differing fiscal years will need to be brought into synchronization. The new consolidated municipality will inherit the budgets of the former governments (the City of Fairbanks and the Fairbanks North Star Borough budgets). The new municipality will operate on these combined budgets until the new assembly passes its first budget. The first budget of the new municipality may be for longer or shorter than a twelve-month period in order to bring the consolidated budgets into conformance with the July to end of June fiscal year.

    The Mayor in consultation with the Chief Finance Officer will, prior to the expiration date of the annual budget of the former city or borough1 prepare a proposed budget that will bring the new municipality into a July 1 to June 30 fiscal year. The proposed budget will be submitted to the assembly for approval and meet the requirements of law.

    G. IDENTIFICATION OF CITY DEBT: Following the sale of the Municipal Utilities in 1997, the City of Fairbanks bonded indebtedness was transferred to the several buyers. The City of Fairbanks does not have any bonded or other long4erm indebtedness.

    H. IDENTIFICATION OF BOROUGH DEBT: The following page lists existing bond indebtedness for the Fairbanks North Star Borough. The School Facilities bonds are areawide. The Solid Waste Transfer Station bonds are non-areawide. Existing service areas do not have any bond indebtedness.    

    I. INTEGRATION OF CITY AND BOROUGH DEBT:

    The City of Fairbanks does not have any bonded or other long-term debt. Any future bonding by the new Fairbanks Service Area for improvements within that service area, will be paid through property taxes levied only on the property within the service area.

    J. INTEGRATION OF CITY ASSETS: In accordance with the schedule set forth in paragraph F. of this Transition Plan, all assets of the city to be consolidated will become assets of the municipality. However, those assets will be reserved for the benefit of and use by the service area created from the former city through consolidation. The city's permanent Fund will be established in a trust reserved for the benefit and use by the new Urban Service Area.

    K. EXISTING TAXES: The type and rate of each tax currently levied by the city and borough proposed to be consolidated is listed below.

    City taxes:

    TAX TYPE RATE
    Property Tax 5.99 Mils
    Liquor Tax 5%
    Tobacco Tax 8%

    Borough Taxes:

    TAX TYPE RATE
    Areawide Property 13.775 Mils
    Non-Areawide Property .511 Mils
    Areawide Bed Tax 8%
    Solid Waste Collection District 1.166 Mils

    (SERVICE AREA PROPERTY TAXES ARE LISTED IN EXHIBIT E-3)

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    EXHIBIT J

    INFORMATION RELATING TO PUBLIC NOTICE

    This exhibit offers information relevant to the provision of public notice of the consolidation proceedings. Included are details about local media, municipal governments within and adjacent to the territory proposed for consolidation, places for posting public notices relating to the proposed consolidation, the location where the petition may be reviewed by the public, and parties that may warrant individual notice of the consolidation proceedings.

    MEDIA

    Name of the newspaper(s) serving the territory proposed for consolidation and adjacent regions:

      • Fairbanks Daily News-Miner
        200 North Cushman
        Fairbanks, AK. 99701

    Name of the radio station(s) serving the territory proposed for consolidation and adjacent regions:

      • KAKQ-FM, 546 9th Ave., Fairbanks, AK. 99701
      • KCBF-AM & KXLR-FM, 3528 International St., Fairbanks, AK. 99701
      • KIAK-AM & FM, 546 9th Ave., Fairbanks, AK. 99701
      • KJNP-AM, P.O. Box 56359, North Pole, AK. 99705
      • KFAR-AM & KWLF-FM, 1060 Aspen St. Fairbanks, AK. 99701

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    PLACE WHERE THE PETITION AND RELATED MATERIALS ARE TO BE MADE AVAILABLE FOR PUBLIC REVIEW

    A full set of petition documents, including responsive briefs, reply briefs, and reports of the Department of Community and Regional Affairs will be made available for public review by the petitioners' representative at the central and convenient location listed below. The materials will be available from the first date of publication of notice of the filing of this petition through the last date available for reconsideration of the final decision under 19 AAC 10.580. The materials will be available for review during normal working hours. The petitioners' representative will accommodate requests for public review of the petition documents at reasonable times in the evening and on weekend days.

      • Noel Wien Public Library, 1215 Cowles St. Fairbanks1 AK 99701. Hours open to the public - Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday 10-9, Thursday & Friday 10-6 and Saturday 10-5.
      • City of Fairbanks City Clerk, 800 Cushman St. Fairbanks, AK. 99701. Hours open to the public -8 to 5.
      • Fairbanks North Star Borough Clerk, 809 Pioneer Rd. Fairbanks, AK. Hours open to the public -8 to 5.
      • City of North Pole City Clerk, 125 Snowman lane, North Pole, AK. 99705. Hours open to the public 8 to 5.

    PLACES SUGGESTED FOR POSTING OF NOTICES RELATING TO THIS PROPOSAL

    The following three or more public and prominent places within the territory proposed for consolidation are designated for posting of notices concerning this consolidation proposal.

      • The library and clerks offices listed above
      • State Office Building 675 7th Ave. Fairbanks, AK. 99701
      • State Court Building 604 Barnette St. Fairbanks, AK. 99701
      • Federal Court Building 101 12th Ave. Fairbanks, AK. 99701

    MUNICIPALITIES WITHIN THE PROPOSED BOROUGH

    The following is a list of cities and boroughs whose boundaries extend within 20 miles of the proposed boundaries of the territory petitioned for consolidation.

      • The Fairbanks North Star Borough
      • The City of Fairbanks
      • The City of North Pole

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    PARTIES THAT MAY HAVE A PARTICULAR INTEREST IN THIS CONSOLIDATION PROPOSAL.

    The following is a list of names and addresses of parties whose potential interest is the consolidation proceedings may warrant individual notice of the proceedings relating to this petition.

    • The City of Fairbanks, 800 Cushman Street, Fairbanks, AK 99701
    • The Fairbanks North Star Borough, 800 Pioneer Rod, Fairbanks, AK. 99701
    • The City of North Pole1 125 Snowman Lane, North Pole AK. 99705
    • Alaska Public Employees Association1 825 College Road, Fairbanks, AK. 99701
    • Education Support Staff Assn., 2116 Cushman Street, Fairbanks, AK. 99701
    • IBEW Local 1547, 60 HaIl Street, Fairbanks, AK. 99701
    • Laborers Union Local 942, 315 Barnette Street, Fairbanks, AK. 99701
    • NEA Alaska, 2118 Cushman Street, Fairbanks, AK. 99701
    • Operating Engineers, Local 302, 819 1~tAvenue1 Fairbanks, AK. 99701
    • Teamsters Union Local 959, 751 Old Richardson Highway, Fairbanks, AK. 99701
    • AK. Independent Carpenters Millwrights Local #1, Box 72790, Fbks., AK. 99707
    • International Fire Fighters Local 1324, P.O. Box 1739, Fairbanks, AK. 99707

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    EXHIBIT K

    AFFIDAVIT OF PETITIONERS' REPRESENTATIVE CONCERNING SOURCE & ACCURACY OF INFORMATION IN THE PETITION  STATE OF ALASKA SB.

    FOURTH JUDICIAL DISTRICT

    I, Don Lowell, representative of the petitioner for consolidation of the City of Fairbanks and the Fairbanks North Star Borough, swear or affirm the following:

    I. The information contained in the petition for consolidation is complete and accurate to the best of my knowledge

    2. The information listed below was provided by the sources listed:

    a) The Department of Labor estimated the population of the territory proposed for consolidation.

    b) Exhibit A, the statement of principal reasons for the consolidation proposal, was prepared by Don Lowell.

    c) Exhibit B-1,the written metes and bounds legal description of the boundaries of the municipality proposed to be incorporated through consolidation1 was prepared by the Department of Community and Regional Affairs.

    d) Exhibit B-2, the map showing the boundaries of the municipality proposed to be incorporated through consolidation, was prepared by the Fairbanks North Star Borough.

    e) Exhibit C-1 the written metes and bounds legal description of the boundaries of the City of Fairbanks1 was provided by the Department of Community and Regional Affairs.

    f) Exhibit C-2, the map showing the boundaries of the City of Fairbanks, was provided by the City of Fairbanks.

    g) Exhibit D1 the proposed composition and apportionment of the Assembly was prepared by Don Lowell from information provided by the Fairbanks North Star Borough.

    h) The list of proposed areawide and non-areawide powers and services was prepared by Don Lowell from information provided by the Fairbanks North Star Borough.

    i) The list of proposed areawide and non-areawide taxes was prepared by Don Lowell from information provided by the City of Fairbanks and the Fairbanks North Star Borough.

    j) Exhibit E-1 the written metes and bounds legal description of the boundaries of each proposed service area does not in exist according to the Fairbanks North Star Borough. (See letter attached to this Exhibit)

    k) Exhibit E-2, the map showing the boundaries of each proposed service area, was prepared by the Fairbanks North Star Borough. I) Exhibit E-3, the list of powers services and taxes for each proposed service area, was prepared by Don Lowell from information provided by the City of Fairbanks and the Fairbanks North Star Borough.

    m) The statement of the assessed or estimated value of taxable property in the territory proposed for consolidation was prepared by Don Lowell from information provided by the Fairbanks North Star Borough.

    n) Exhibit F, the proposed three year operating budget, was prepared by Juanitia Helms from information provided by the City of Fairbanks and the Fairbanks North Star Borough.

    o) Exhibit G, the voting rights information, was provided by Don Lowell from information provided by the Department of Community and Regional Affairs.

    p) Exhibit H, the brief, was prepared by Don Lowell.

    q) Exhibit I, the final transition plan, was prepared by Don Lowell following critique by the Fairbanks North Star Borough administration.

    r) Exhibit J, information relating to public notice was prepared by Don Lowell.

    s) Exhibit K the Affidavit of Petitioner's Representative concerning source and accuracy of information was prepared by Don Lowell  

    t) Exhibit L, the authorization of petition for consolidation of the City of Fairbanks and the Fairbanks North Star Borough with the signatures of at least the number of voters required by AS 29.06.100 will accompany this petition when filed with the Dept. of Community and Regional Affairs. The petitioners met with the Mayor of the City of Fairbanks, the Mayor of the Fairbanks North Star Borough and the Presiding Officer of the Assembly in early May, 1998 and received approval to consult with department heads in developing a consolidation petition. In the months following, city and borough personnel and the Department of Community and Regional Affairs provided essential information, valuable guidance and critique in the development of the consolidation petition.

    u) Members of the Consolidation Committee participated in the overall preparation of the petition to consolidate the City of Fairbanks and the Fairbanks North Star Borough.  

    Petitioners' Representative
    SUBSCRIBED AND SWORN TO before me on ____________________1998

    [notary seal] ________________________________________

    Notary Public in and for Alaska
    My Commission expires: ___________________

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