Two RCMP members have settled into a new home in the Kwanlin Dun village.
The satellite office is now stationed inside the band council office, just to the left of reception.
The previous detachment was homey, literally.
It was located in the living room of a mobile home, which had been converted into officespace.
The move, which has been in the works since last summer, has many benefits, according to RCMP.
Being on the main drag is a more accessible location, said Cpl. Grant MacDonald.
“The move of the satellite office from its prior location into the administration office does increase our visibility and access to the community and for the community,” he said in an interview Friday.
“It provides an opportunity for RCMP to meet with Kwanlin Dun First Nation community residents and listen to their concerns.”
Having this office setting will help put a face on RCMP in the village and build rapport with the community, he added.
“A lot of people access the administration office for a whole bunch of reasons and, by being in there, we’re front and centre.”
Like the rest of the territory’s RCMP the two officers stationed in the McIntyre subdivision do shift work.
This means the office is sometimes open during the day and sometimes at night, depending on their schedules.
The satellite office officially opened last week and the change is already paying off, said MacDonald.
“Even when we were just moving in and setting our office up, it’s quite clear that it certainly does make us more accessible,” he said.
“On a daily basis there’s more and more interaction with Kwanlin Dun First Nation people and our members.”
Village residents are popping in to have a coffee and chat about policing, he said.
Being more central, RCMP also hope to continue building their relationship with youth in the community — especially through programs like the weekly pick-up hockey game, and through the band’s drug and alcohol strategies.
“We continue to focus on working with our youth in the community,” said MacDonald.
“I think it’s a very positive thing for the community and that it really will help strengthen (the RCMP’s) relationship with the people of Kwanlin Dun, in particular the youth.” (CO)
Pipeline could collide
with tax hike
The proposed Alaska Highway natural gas pipeline is edging closer to reality.
In late February, Alaska Governor Frank Murkowski announced a contract between the state and the North Slope producers — BP, ConocoPhillips and ExxonMobil.
“Completion of the gas pipeline contract represents a major milestone in securing a natural gas pipeline, which will provide hope and opportunity for Alaska’s future,” Murkowski said in a release.
The agreement was confirmed by officials from the three companies.
“This is a significant milestone,” said ConocoPhillips president Jim Bowles.
“A well-constructed net profits tax could benefit Alaska and provide the fiscal certainty that will support future investment.”
The agreement means the pipeline proposal has passed a “major hurdle,” according to the Yukon government.
“This is good news,” Energy, Mines and Resources minister Archie Lang said in a release.
“The Yukon government has been working hard over the past few years in anticipation of this announcement, which significantly moves the project forward.”
The Yukon government expects the North Slope producers to spend upwards of $1 billion on field work and preliminary engineering.
But the agreement has to pass the Alaska legislature first.
And Murkowski’s proposal to revamp the state’s oil production tax structure is giving the producers second thoughts.
Murkowski’s proposed system would charge producers a 20-per-cent tax and offer a 20-per-cent “tradable tax credit” in return.
The producers are concerned that higher taxes will limit their capacity for development.
“Given our view of the resources, we would not support a higher tax rate or lower credits than proposed in this bill,” Richard Owen, a production manager for ExxonMobil in Alaska, told the Anchorage Daily News. (GM)