East End Road Neighbors Seek Natural Gas Extension
A property owner who lives outside the boundaries of the Homer and Kachemak City Special Assessment Districts wants natural gas at his house. Pete Roberts is leading the charge to create a Utility Special Assessment District, or USAD, with his neighbors out East End Road. The property owners would create that district through the Kenai Peninsula Borough.
Roberts wants to save money on energy.
“Anchor Point people were paying $400 to $600 a month a year ago during the cold part of the year for their heat. Now they’re paying under $100,” he said.
Unfortunately, the natural gas pipeline that’s currently being installed down Baycrest Hill will not make it out to his property. He held a meeting April 24 to gauge interest among his neighbors. About 20 people came out and many were responsive to the idea.
“So what we want to do is get the most number per square mile of area covered. And as the facilitator… I’m the key guy that’s doing this, I get to pick where the boundary lines go. And I will do that relative to people who step forward,” he said.
Once Roberts has an idea of who is interested and draws the boundary lines, the Kenai Peninsula Borough requires a super majority plus one in order to pass the USAD. Homer was able to create its own rules. The code requires only a majority to create a special assessment district.
Roberts said Borough Assembly members Mako Haggerty and Bill Smith attended the meeting. He plans to speak with them about possibly changing the USAD rules.
“It needs to go down to no higher than 60 percent yes vote and I would like to see the Borough float the loan for the line extension from the street to the house. It would be roughly $1,200 to $1,800 for most people and have that amortized over 10 years the way the assessment is,” he said.
For now, Roberts said he will move forward and work under the current super majority requirements. He said he expects the assessment to total about $3,500 to $4,000 per lot. Homer’s district assessed payments at a little more than $3,200 per lot.
Roberts will continue looking for interested property owners like those who live further toward Fritz Creek. He said anyone who wants more information can contact him directly. Roberts plans to hold another informational meeting in May.