SitNews - Stories in the News - Ketchikan, Alaska


World Port, Superintendent, Library...
By Robert McRoberts


April 16, 2007

I have been generating some serious brain waves on the subject of Prince Rupert becoming a world port. I am really surprised Tongass Conservation is for this as is the Chamber of Commerce. I feel that there is only one way that Ketchikan can capitalize on that and that's because of our airport.

I can not see how we could operate any kind of interception of freight. These containers all have to go to sort yards to be broken up for their distributors. Once things come into the U.S., they're searched and sent on to the closet distributors and then sent to Alaska by a U.S. port by longshoremen. Ketchikan could never handle any kind of sort yard and inspection yard as cheap as it can be done in Seattle. Yes we could ship a few exports. I have been to Dutch Harbor and have seen what it takes. If you cannot handle a logging road, how could you take all the ship traffic killing all the whales and such that live out of sight below the water level? But heck you proudly love the tour ships coming down the channel like a big blender copping and mulching.

If Ketchikan had road access to Petersburg and Canada, we would have a better chance for something to happen here - that's the way it looks to me.

Now here is a thought on the Harry Martin story: I really do not know why Superintendent Harry was fired, but I can tell you this, he had to have known every single kid by name and most of the parents that showed up for their kids things. We well never replace him very easily. No Superintendent will ever be perfect. I can tell Harry is a reader and not a ball player. It takes a lot of running to keep up with people who think they can say what's good for other peoples children. It seems the only two who thought not to fire Harry were the only ones who actually had kids in the system. I just hope it wasn't an ego thing since he was so highly paid and Superintendent of the Year. I say keep Harry and no more big raises.

All this talk about reading brings me to the library issue. Move the museum. The library is in a good place to sit back and study. No great views of the channel to distract your reading just the steady roar of the creek. The city should buy the Dawson property downtown and put a museum there. All the tourist could get there much easier and surely in time to do other things. Not much would be needed for parking since most people will be walk-ins. Its ground level and handicapped accessible. Let that property start paying back its cost - if it can help maintain the cost of living get it up front.

Robert McRoberts
Ketchikan, AK

Received April 16, 2007 - Published April 16, 2007


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Ketchikan, Alaska