780 AM | 96.1 FM | “Yours for Western Alaska”

City Decides To Give Nome Property Owners More Time Before Abatement Action Is Taken

Nome City Council members review budget items. Photo: Matthew F. Smith, KNOM.

The Nome City Council will not take action against four potentially hazardous or nuisance properties, for now.

During Monday night’s Council meeting, four properties were on an abatement list and could have been remediated, removed, or demolished. Instead, the Council decided to give all four property owners until July 1st to make required changes to their buildings, and if they don’t, then the City will step in.

Councilman Gerald Brown brought the proposed grace period to the table.

“I’d like to propose an amendment to change the March 1st date to July 1st, so that way there is still the hammer, and it doesn’t look like we are letting everyone off the hook.”

The Council approved the amended resolution unanimously. Other business the Council passed included an ordinance to extend the deadline for paying Nome property taxes by more than two weeks. Councilman Lew Tobin questioned if this extension would be fair to those who pay taxes via snail mail, especially if the local post office sends mail exceptionally slowly. City Manager Tom Moran explains that this change should give people the same amount of time to pay if not more.

“If you hit penalty and interest on July 16th, like you should, it’s very difficult for all those postmarks to go back, and have that penalty and interest removed. It’s an accounting function that has to be done, not even at the city clerk’s office. So we said if we could just extend the due date by 16 days and have it due in our office by July 31st then we would get rid of the postmark clause for the edification of the audience, that was the rationale.”

City tax-payers now have until July 31st of the tax year to pay the first installment and until October 31st to pay the second. According to City Clerk Bryant Hammond, there is also an option to submit online payments, for a fee, using credit cards or electronic checks.

Before adjourning the regular meeting, Nome’s City Council authorized the sale of surplus property through a public sealed bid. There are almost 60 lots up for grabs, including the old museum and library building. Besides that property, Moran says all the other lots listed were created from changes made to the Greg Kruschek road.

“And Lot 112A is not sequential, but all of these are the blocks that were created by the Greg Kruschek road dedication, so that’s why these have A’s. If you look at a plot map from 1905, you’ll see 77, 78, 79, you won’t see an A. So when the Greg Kruschek road dedication, when the bypass road was created, and the dedication happened, little slivers of these lots and these blocks were altered slightly so they got those separate delineations.”

According to city documents, the majority of the lots up for sale have an assessed value and minimum bid of $19,300, while the old museum and library building is set at $250,000.

The City Council will convene again for their next regular meeting on February 12th in Council Chambers.

Image at top: file photo: Nome City Council members review budget items. Photo: Matthew F. Smith, KNOM.