Juneau, AK (KINY) - City Manager Rorie Watt gave an update on the status of replacing the Liberty with a new fast response cutter and where that boat might be deployed.
Following a meeting with the Coast Guard, Watt said that most of the meeting was informational on what their process for a replacement looked like.
“There is no decision being made at this point and he just gave us an update on their process. We also talked about the deployment of coastal patrol boats. I would characterize it generally as an informational meeting. There’s a good relationship between the city and the Coast Guard.”
Watt was asked if there an estimate on when that decision could be made.
“I think it’s out of their control, but I think that there are recommendations that are forwarding up soon, so I expect a decision to be made in the next several months.”
We also asked Watt to explain the importance of the Coast Guard to Juneau.
“They are one of our largest employers and that's really important for us and you know obviously we have a huge maritime footprint, whether that's private boats or commercial fishing or the charter fleet or the cruise ships. So I would say the Coast Guard is very important part of our local economy and civic fabric.”
Of course, the services of the 17th District of the Coast Guard in Juneau will continue as usual. The main concern is having that fast response Cutter available for the future as the Liberty is taken off of the fleet.