Municipality of Anchorage terminates contract with Bean’s Cafe to operate Sullivan Arena shelter

In a letter obtained by Landmine, the Municipality of Anchorage (MOA) informed Lisa Sauder, CEO of Bean’s Cafe, that their contract to manage the Sullivan Arena shelter will end on September 15, 2021. Bean’s Cafe, a non-profit organization lucrative, has operated the Sullivan Arena mass shelter since March 2020, when it opened as an emergency shelter due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Many people staying at Brother Francis Shelter and Bean’s Cafe on Third Avenue have moved to the Sullivan.

The Ministry of Agriculture launched a Request for Proposal (RFP) on August 16 to “provide collective emergency accommodation services for homeless people”. The RFP does not mention the Sullivan Arena shelter. Instead, it states that a “specific shelter site has not been identified”.

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After taking office in July, Anchorage Mayor Dave Bronson offered to build a new mass shelter and navigation center on Tudor and Elmore. The Assembly has not yet adopted the proposal. Many members of the Assembly favor small shelters spread across the city. In late July, the Assembly approved a facilitator to assist in negotiations with the Bronson administration. A task force recently reduced a shelter to seven sites around the city, but no clear plan has been agreed.

Sources inform us that the winner of the tender is 99 Plus 1, Inc. However, the MOA did not confirm, but said, “The winner will be announced when negotiations are completed.” Responses to the calls for tenders were due August 30. According to Alaska State Business Records, 99 Plus 1 Inc. was established on September 14, 2020 and is owned by Theresa Pisa. The RFP states that anyone submitting a proposal must have three years of experience providing services in the areas listed in the scope.

This is a developing story.

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About Walter Bartholomew

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