There has been some confusion about Ballot Proposition 2 and the reasons behind it. Prop 2 amends section 5-19 of the City’s Charter such that the City may conduct business with elected officials or the City Manager without competitive procurement so long as Council approves that business via ordinance and the City publicly discloses the terms of the transaction. This is an attempt to explain what, exactly, that means.
Cordova Municipal Code Chapter 5.12 outlines the different types of “competitive procurement” in detail, which include both competitive sealed bidding and requests for proposals, but the long and short of it is this: if the City wishes to spend more than $25,000 on something, there are specialized processes it must go through to ensure that no contractor is given an undue advantage that potentially compromises public interest.
Ballot Prop 2 doesn’t alter competitive procurement at all. Competitive procurement is already quite corruption-proof—that’s its whole point—and is open to elected officials since there is no clear way their public office could offer them an advantage. What Prop 2 addresses is work the City needs done that costs less than $25,000, and therefore doesn’t need to go to competitive procurement. As Section 5-19 of our Charter is currently written, public officials cannot conduct non-competitively procured business with the City—that is, any business worth less than $25,000 (and which isn’t available to the general public, like utilities). This is a problem for two reasons: first, it’s frequently a disadvantage to the City—which is to say, the taxpayers—and second, it disincentivizes running for public office.
Under Charter Section 5-19 the City cannot hire an elected official or the City Manager for non-competitively procured work even when hiring that specific individual is to the benefit of the City. It is an outright prohibition. This means that if Person X serves on the school board, but can provide Y service the City needs done for $5,000 cheaper than the next guy/gal, the City is currently forced to go with the more expensive, or lower quality, or out-of-town option. This is a real problem in a town as small as Cordova, and points at the genesis of this amendment, which happened last summer, when a volunteer working on behalf of the City to make the harbor COVID-safe on a tight deadline inadvertently hired an elected official for a small contract, causing Council to realize Charter Section 5-19 was a problem.
More importantly, this amendment is intended to incentivize participation in local government. The City wants to attract the most talent it can to local government positions. But with Charter Section 5-19 as it currently stands, if you own a business that might conduct some sort of transaction with the City, you’re better served to stay home and not get involved in local politics. That’s backwards. We want to encourage the business leaders in our community to become involved in the civic process—not punish them for it.
Of course, Charter Section 5-19 exists for a reason, and Council maintains that it’s important to safeguard against abuses of power. This amendment will still do that. Under the amendment, if the City wishes to conduct business with a publicly elected official or the City Manager, two things must happen: Council must approve the transaction via ordinance, and the terms of the transaction must be disclosed to the public. In other words, an outright prohibition is being replaced with the flexible, case-by-case discretion of Council. If those two criteria are not met the elected official will forfeit their office and the contract is voidable by Council.
The Prince William Sound Economic Development District is conducting a survey to help update its Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy. PWSEDD is seeking responses from any community member that would like to contribute through the survey before February 28th, 2021. In just five minutes you can help guide the region's economic growth and prosperity!
Cordova is at ten active cases as of today, Tuesday, 2/23/21. All ten of these cases are from the last four days.
We are asking for individual responsibility and behavior to help contain these cases. The schools will continue to follow their mitigation plan. Please be aware that your actions affect other people.
It is strongly recommended that people who travel practice strict social distancing upon returning to Cordova.
For the most up-to-date case counts and news releases, click the Dashboard above.
It is important that all Cordovans who want the COVID-19 Vaccine register by filling out this questionnaire (also accessed by scanning the QR code below), or calling 424-3045. This is crucial to determining the vaccine need for our community, and assists us in ordering from the state.
If you want the vaccine, you should sign up regardless of what vaccine tier you are in.
Please do not sign up more than once. We will maintain the same list until everybody has been vaccinated. If registered, you will receive a call to set up an appointment as soon as you are eligible and we have vaccine available.
Thank you for your patience and support throughout this process. The Medical Response Team is working diligently to ensure that all Cordovans who want the vaccine will receive it. Thank you!
Current testing times in Cordova
(*fees may apply):
Ilanka Community Health Center:
Mondays and Fridays, 2-3 p.m.
Please call ahead to pre-register at 424-3622. Testing entry is downstairs across from the Episcopal Church.
Cordova Community Medical Center:
Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, 9–9:30 a.m.
Testing is done at the Ambulance Bay.
Your City Government
City Council Members (by seat)
A. Tom Bailer
B. Cathy Sherman
C. Jeff Guard
D. Melina Meyer
E. Anne Schaefer
F. David Allison
G. David Glasen