Juneau, Alaska (KINY) - Juneau Senator Dennis Egan offered his reaction to the decision by the Federal Highway Administration to close the book on the Juneau Access Project while a guest on Action Line Tuesday.
Egan said he wasn't surprised, but was sad about the decision. "At least the Governor didn't veto all the money that we put back in the last session. So the money is still there."
The Legislature restored most of the funding that was stripped from the project last year and that had been designated for other transportation projects in Northern Lynn Canal.
There's now about $42 Million in a pot of money earmarked for Juneau Access. Egan was asked how safe he thinks those funds are given the decision by the feds that followed Governor Walker's selection of the no-build alternative in the environmental impact study.
"I don't think its safe at all," he said. "That can be reappropriated elsewhere and even if it stays in Alaska, we can't guarantee where that money is going to go."
Lieutenant Governor Byron Mallott said on Action Line recently that the administration doesn't like the plan to build a road to the Katzehin River and then using ferry shuttles from there. He said they would prefer a hard link all the way to Skagway. While he thinks Mallott is correct, Egan would still like to see the first 50 miles to the Katzehin constructed and then worry about the last 14 miles.