To the editor:
Andrew Wellner’s article in the Sept. 25, 2012, edition of the Mat-Su Valley Frontiersman states that the three options under discussion by the Mat-Su Borough Assembly are: move M/V Susitna into storage in Washington state; sell it; and give it away.
The best way to sell it for the lowest possible price would be to mothball it far away in another state where its marvelous Arctic ice-breaking ferryboat capabilities could not be showcased.
And, of course, no buyer will make “any kind of credible offer” after hearing Assemblymen Steve Colligan and Warren Keogh say, “the ship needs to go on federal surplus registry” to be given away for nothing. “F” in sales goes to this duo.
I suggest we operate M/V Susitna as a ferryboat until it is sold to show off its usefulness and capabilities as an Arctic ice-breaking ferryboat in winter in Cook Inlet. This amazing ship can load and unload at a boat launch ramp or even a naked beach! Prospective buyers will then offer millions more dollars than our costs in maintenance and mooring. Since it would serve Anchorage too as a ferry, costs should be split with Anchorage municipality.
By not spending the money to showcase the M/V Susitna properly as an operational advanced Arctic ferryboat, the Mat-Su Borough will loose millions more than it is trying to save. This is not to mention millions more dollars lost in unrealized commercial development, tax base enhancement, etc. that ferry service would stimulate. And, the borough will loose a $4.5 million Port Terminal care of Federal Transit Authority by this shortsightedness.