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SitNews - Stories In The News - Ketchikan, Alaska
March 25, 2009

Front Page Photo by MISTY PATTISON

Springtime in Alaska
The first day of spring at Knudson Cove Marina.
Front Page Photo by MISTY PATTISON


Alaska: March 31 Deadline to Apply for 2008 PFD Fast Approaching - The deadline to apply for the 2008 PFD is rapidly approaching. The 2008 application period
will close at midnight, March 31.

PFD Director Deborah Richter encourages applicants to file online, "Applying online is fast and efficient. Applicants immediately receive a confirmation number ­ proof that the PFD Division has received their application." As of mid-day March 19, over 423,723 Alaskans had applied online ­ 3,127 more applicants than the total of all 2007 online applicants.

Every Alaskan can apply online for their 2008 PFD. Alaskans who register for a myAlaska account can electronically sign their PFD application through the state's myAlaska program. Visit to learn more about the electronic signature program and to set up a myAlaska account. - More...
Wednesday - March 25, 2009

Petersburg: ALASKA AIRLINES SUSPENDS PETERSBURG SERVICE MARCH 23-APRIL 21 DUE TO RUNWAY CLOSING - Alaska Airlines will not operate in or out of Petersburg from March 23 to April 21, 2009, due to the State of Alaska, Department of Transportation and Public Facilities (DOTPF) closure of the Petersburg runway to jet aircraft operations. The closure is necessary to replace several culverts that span the runway.

While the Petersburg runway is closed, flights will spend additional ground time at the Wrangell airport to accommodate Petersburg customers and cargo traveling to Wrangell.

The temporary flight schedule is as follows:

  • Flight 65 arrives in Wrangell at 9:19 a.m. from Seattle and Ketchikan
  • Flight 65 departs Wrangell at 11:04 a.m. to Juneau and Anchorage
  • Flight 64 arrives in Wrangell at 2:47 p.m. from Anchorage and Juneau
  • Flight 64 departs from Wrangell at 4:35 p.m. to Ketchikan and Seattle

During the closure period, Petersburg customers are asked to book their travel to and from Wrangell. Customers who have already booked travel to or from Petersburg during the closure period should call Alaska Airlines at (800) ALASKA-AIR and request a reservation change to Wrangell. There will be no change fees. - More...
Wednesday - March 25, 2009

Alaska: OFFICIALS CONDUCT TEST OF THE ALASKA TSUNAMI WARNING SYSTEM - A test of the Alaska Tsunami Warning System was conducted this morning by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) National Weather Service, and the Alaska Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management, in cooperation with local emergency management offices and the Alaska Broadcasters Association. At approximately 9:45 a.m. Alaska Standard Time a live tsunami test code was distributed by the Alaska Emergency Alert System. People listening to radio or television broadcasts should have heard the test if the system is working properly.

Through a proclamation signed by Governor Palin, March 22 through March 28, 2009 has been declared Tsunami Awareness Week. The week coincides with the anniversary of the Great Alaskan Earthquake...a devastating 9.2 magnitude earthquake that triggered deadly tsunamis in Alaska 45 years ago on Good Friday. The focal point for this awareness week is the test of the Alaska Tsunami Warning System.

The communications test involved NOAA Weather Radio, the Emergency Alert System (EAS), and other state and local communication links. The radio and television test included the familiar alerting tone followed by an audio message describing the test, similar to the routine monthly tests of the EAS. Many television systems are programmed to scroll a standard emergency alert text message and in some cases, the message may not contain the word "TEST." An audio message will say that the warning is a test, but if the volume is turned down or otherwise unheard, viewers may not realize the warning is a test. Communities with tsunami sirens may have sounded those sirens during the test. - More...
Wednesday - March 25, 2009

Alaska: Alaska Delegation Asks For Meeting With Obama To Discuss Arctic Management - The Alaska Congressional Delegation on Tuesday asked for a meeting with President Barack Obama to discuss Alaska's management of the Arctic.

In a letter to Obama, the delegation urged the President not to take any "rash actions" regarding Arctic policy, saying that such a move could harm the nation's economic recovery as well as efforts to increase the nation's energy independence.

"The Alaska delegation has taken the lead in protecting the Arctic and promoting conservation efforts using the best available science," according to the letter. "Far too often, though, talk of implementing 'science-based precautionary management' in the Arctic is in reality simply code for ignoring the scientific evidence, shortchanging the process and trying to stop all commercial activity in the region."

Pointing to oil and gas development and climate change in the Arctic, nearly 70 House Democrats have signed a letter to Obama urging him to implement 'science-based precautionary management' in the region. The lawmakers identified three areas of concern ­ the Beaufort and Chukchi seas, the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge and the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska. They have called for taking ANWR production permanently off the table and suspending all new oil and gas exploration and development, both onshore and offshore.

"These recommendations would hang a 'closed for business' sign around Alaska," Sen. Lisa Murkowski said. "It's important that President Obama hear from the people who know Alaska best ­ those who live and work there." - More...
Wednesday - March 25, 2009


Fish Factor: Salmon harvest could be the 11th largest since statehood By LAINE WELCH - A bumper run of pinks could provide a 20 percent boost to Alaska's total salmon catch this year to 175 million fish. If the forecast holds true, Alaska's salmon harvest this year will be the 11th largest since statehood.

State fishery managers have released the 2009 salmon run forecasts and catch projections for all Alaska regions. Here's a breakdown by species: for Chinook salmon, the total catch is pegged at 249,000, a decrease of 85,000 fish from last year. The statewide sockeye catch is projected at 38 million, a drop of one million reds from last season. The preseason projection for coho salmon call for a slight increase to 4.6 million silvers; likewise, chums should see a slight bump to 18.5 million fish.

For those hard to predict humpies, state managers estimate the catch will jump to 113 million pink salmon, a 34% increase from last year.

The state report also gives a great recap of the 2008 salmon season by region. Some interesting highlights: The salmon catch at Southeast Alaska and Yakutat regions totaled 28 million fish, with a dockside value of $117 million. Landings were made by 1,853 permit holders, a slight decrease.

At Copper River, the 2008 sockeye salmon catch of 321,000 was the lowest in 30 years. The near record 42.4 million pink salmon catch at Prince William Sound was made up of 97% hatchery raised fish.

Lower Cook Inlet had the lowest salmon catch in a decade, but increased prices pushed up the value to $3.96 million. That ranks as the highest value since 1988, and the fourth highest since statehood.

Salmon catches in the Kuskokwim region by 462 permit holders totaled 494,108 fish, an increase of 50,000. A total of 496 permits fished salmon on the Yukon River last year. The average fishing income for the Upper Yukon was $2,633; for the Lower Yukon, income averaged $1,479.

Norton Sound enjoyed the third largest coho salmon harvest on record and a resurgence of pink salmon fishing. The combined harvest of all salmon species was the best in ten years. The 2008 fishery was valued at $760,362, the highest since 1994. The average fishing income value for Kotzebue fishermen was $8,026.

At Kodiak, only 277 out of 608 permit holders landed salmon last year. The value of the Kodiak catch increased by $3.5 million, to $27.87 million. Fifty-four salmon permit holders fished at Chignik, where the dockside value of $7.3 million equates to about $234,000 in fishing income per permit holder.

The value of Alaska's 2008 salmon fishery was $409 million at the docks. - More...
Wednesday - March 25, 2009


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Feb. - March 2009
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08 09 10 11 12 13 14
15 16 17 18 19 20 21
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Basic Rules

letterQuestions for the Mayor By Rodney Dial - Dear Mr. Kiffer, you seem like an intelligent and gifted writer, and a decent Mayor. However, I am at a loss to understand two of the beliefs you seem to govern by: 1. That it is never a good time for government to build or buy something, so it is always a good time to build or buy something, and 2. Your apparent belief that quality of a thing equals quantity of cash directed at it. - More...
Sunday PM - March 22, 2009

letterGlobal Warming By Charlotte Tanner - Carl Gatto states " "Global warmers" also predict no more agriculture in California, and in ten years the oceans will be toxic and all life could die. And yet, we're halfway to the much-feared "doubling of CO2" in the atmosphere, and none of these disasters has even begun to appear". - More...
Sunday PM - March 22, 2009

letter Shouldn't have voted for McCain By A. M. Johnson - Much to my dismay, prophecy's predicted have come true and I find myself in a rare position of having to concede that my vote for John McCain was in error. - More...
Sunday PM - March 22, 2009

letterPalins By Frances Natkong - Excuse me, enough already about the Palin's, Bristol and Levi. There's more to worry about these days than whether or not they stay together or break up......sheeshhhhhhhhh. Give it a rest. I for one am so tired of hearing about this. - More...
Sunday PM - March 22, 2009

letterBuffett Not Good Enough By Chris Elliott - Another ridiculous editorial in The Seattle Times. This one, Gates Foundation should open up, by Pablo Eisenberg, a senior fellow with the Georgetown Public Policy Institute, was published March 17. Mr. Eisenberg states that while the Gates Foundation will increase its giving by an additional $500 million in 2009, it would be well-advised to have an enlarged board of four to eight additional members who are not part of the Gates family or their personal advisors and retainers to assure public accountability and because the decision-making process (deciding where the money goes) requires broad perspectives, a wealth of experience and interests beyond family concerns. Warren Buffett is a member of the Gates Foundation board. There's a guy we all know is clueless. - More...
Tuesday PM - March 17, 2009

letterTIME FOR SOME CLIMATE REALISM By Rep. Carl Gatto - We try to stay informed, read the newspapers, watch the news on TV, and still we missed a major event that affects our future and our pocketbooks. 700 scientists, economists, and public policy experts from 20 countries met in New York City in early March of this year. They concluded that global warming, if it is occurring at all, is probably natural rather than man-made. - More...
Tuesday PM - March 17, 2009

letterDog poop on the sidewalks - GROSS!!! By Carrie Mueller - I would like to confront dog owners in downtown Ketchikan. Since I never actually see them when it counts, I will hopefully reach all of you inconsiderate, so called "dog owners" here. - More...
Tuesday PM - March 17, 2009

letter A Trillion Dollars By Ken Leland - A Trillion Dollars is a Million Million Dollars.Imagine all the wealth of a million Millionaires confiscated by the government and handed out by Congress to spend however they want. - More...
Tuesday - March 17, 2009

letterLetters of Support for EPA Assessment By Kenneth Carpenter - Our nonprofit received as a donation the 347 Bawden Street property. As you all know, this was your former hospital and was built with asbestos in the building. The asbestos has hampered the development of the property for several owners. The first step in rehabilitating this property is to remove the asbestos. Remodeling or demolition legally requires abatement, which is removal of the asbestos and other hazards such as lead. Your health is our #1 priority with this project, the health of the future sites occupants is our second, and meeting the best needs of the community is our third. Our immediate goal is abatement, however assessment must take place first. For nearly a year we have been working with the EPA to achieve this goal. Currently the EPA is evaluating our request for Site Assessment of the building. Abatement funding is dependent on assessment, and assessment funding is based on community support. All they need is a letter of support for our project from your City Mayor, KGB Mayor, Tribal Council or Governor in order for assessment and abatement to begin. I wrote to all of your elected government leaders and they all have not responded to date. - More...
Monday - March 16, 2009

letter Trillion-Buck Rogers of the 21st Century By Al Johnson - As a senior citizen looking at the fiscal shenanigans being fostered on the American Public by the uncertified holder of the Office of President, my frustration on how this reckless future debt will be paid was antagonizing. - More...
Monday - March 16, 2009

letterUnderstanding Million, Billion, and Trillion By Charlotte Tanner - We read about how billions, and trillions are being thrown around as "bail-outs", etc. I have never had one inkling what these figures actually meant. They are much too large for my mind to grasp, so I did some googling. This one website had these neat definitions, they kind of give me a feeling for what our government is promising various corporations, and other entities. WOW! - More...
Monday - March 16, 2009

letterPEPPERMINT PATTIES By David G. Hanger - On a nice, sunny day a rich man goes for a walk down a sandy beach. The wind gusts suddenly, and up ahead are three children; a middle class child, an upper middle class child, and a lower middle class child; who in the course of playing five feet off the shore have fallen over a shelf into deep water and are drowning. Noticing that the gusting wind has chilled him a bit, the rich man turns and goes home to get a sweater. Once home he gives his dog a bone, just for being such a good, good boy. The three children, of course, drowned. - More...
Thursday - March 12, 2009

letter Native Oratory Contest: THANK YOU! By Cara Wallace - Thank you to everyone who made Ketchikan's first Native Oratory Contest (held on February 16) a success! The Native Oratory Contest was a contemporary way of celebrating Alaska Native peoples' oral traditions. Oral traditions tell us who we are and where we come from, they connect us to our ancestors, affirm our relationships with one another, and help us navigate the future. One of Alaska's most famous orators was Elizabeth Peratrovich, who spoke with conviction, honesty, poise and eloquence when she addressed the territorial legislature to advocate for our collective civil rights. It was especially fitting that we celebrated the exchange of Native knowledge, ideas and history on the same day Alaska honors Elizabeth Peratrovich's legacy. - More...
Wednesday - March 11, 2009

letter Southeast CHAMPS scrounging for money By Charles Edwardson - I have written about the activities' fund in this publication more than a few times and as predicted I did not actively do anything about it, or think about it much until the time came when my kid needed support for her extracurricular activity. Guilty as charged and so is the school board. So I reached into my wallet and slapped down another thousand bucks as do many parents and faithful fans. - More...
Monday - March 09, 2009

letterKetchikan to Hyder link By Gary Benedict - Pete Cessnun and Ken Eichner told me years ago about a route up to LeDuc Glacier from around the Rudyard Bay area. At the start of the work on what was to become the Granduc Copper mine there was a road grubbed out from the Behm Canal to where there is now the head of an 11.5 tunnel that comes out at the Granduc mill site. - More...
Monday - March 09, 2009

letterLet's get real!! By Robert D. Warner - Recently there have been several letters to SitNews pushing this issue of building a hard link to the mainland. - More...
Monday - March 09, 2009

letterRe: Over the Horizon By Alan R. (Rudy) McGillvray - Well, as I said before, we have many more ridges that the wind blows across than we do lakes that drain into our inland waterways. Also, we have many more inland waterways that have a lot of tidal action. Both may be used to generate electricity, and in the case of wind-power, could be online before the permitting process for a new expensive dam is even read by the permitting authority. - More...
Monday - March 09, 2009

letter Financial crisis explained in simple terms By Al Johnson - There was a time when you couldn't find anybody that voted for Jimmy Carter. It seems to becoming that way for "Dear Leader". - More...
Monday - March 09, 2009

letterAMHS Survey By Kristine Bellanich - Anyone interested in voicing their opinion about the AMHS, new Alaska class ferries, I urge you to take the survey. The state is trying to switch over all newer ferries brought online into 'daytime' ferries with no staterooms, sitting room only and what seems to be switching from kitchen/ cafeteria stlye to vending for meals. - More...
Monday - March 09, 2009

letter GUN BILL GOING NOWHERE By Donald Daugherty - I'm glad to see opposition to the gun bill. Americans have every right to bear arms to protect themselves. IF every law abiding citizen in the country were to turn their guns in, only the criminals would have them. - More...
Monday - March 09, 2009

letter Gun bill By Richard Lippart - I'm sorry to say that our country is coming to this, thanks to anti-gun people. But, I can say that as a service-member and avid hunter, if you dare think you can make me turn in my guns and wait for the local law enforcement, you're sadly mistaken. - More...
Monday - March 09, 2009

letter Economy By Robert McRoberts - Every one is losing their job. We have messed up our economy so bad. What happened? Being a contractor, I can see how we can not afford to hire help. I wish I could hire help but I hate the idea of putting so much money out to hire other people. I get so little in return. If they have an accident I end up paying. I lose by putting out so much for just the pride to be a employer. Maybe it's just a little guy theory, but if every one was responsible for their safety we would all work safer. - More...
Monday - March 09, 2009

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