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SitNews - Stories In The News - Ketchikan, Alaska
March 03, 2012

Front Page Photo By SUSAN HOYT

'Walking on Water'
This Trumpeter Swan appears to be walking on water as it tiptoes along a submerged log at Ward Lake.
Front Page Photo By SUSAN HOYT


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Southeast Alaska - Biobrick Manufacturing Facility in Wrangell Explored – A growing coalition of groups and businesses are working together to develop a biofuel manufacturing facility in the Southeast island community of Wrangell. Space heating with biofuels is a key recommendation of the recently released draft Southeast Integrated Resource Plan, and with a near 50 percent increase in load on the hydropower system over the past 5 years due to oil to electric boiler conversions, Wrangell residents are looking for local solutions that can create jobs and keep home heating affordable.

Biobrick Manufacturing Facility in Wrangell Explored

Wood briquette

“We see a real opportunity to produce a local product for local use that will help preserve our hydropower for fish processors and other industrial users,” said Jeremy Maxand, SEACC community organizer in Wrangell. “We believe that matching local resources such as wood and paper waste, with local energy needs is an approach that can be applied around the region.”

Over the past several years, Southeast has seen a number of successful locally driven biomass boiler projects, including community schools in Craig and Thorne Bay, the Sitka Coast Guard facility, Sealaska’s One Plaza building in Juneau, and two federal buildings in Ketchikan.

Innovation and cooperation are rising to satisfy the growing demand for wood fuel generated by these wood-based boilers. Just last month, Ketchikan entrepreneurs Larry Jackson (Tongass Forest Enterprises) and Trevor Sande began producing their first wood pellets.

While wood boilers in the region use a range of materials, such as pellets and chips, Wrangell is considering manufacturing a wood and paper “briquette” that can be used in home wood stoves. Unlike pellet stoves, the use of briquettes, or bricks, requires no conversion and can be used just like regular firewood.

Although the plan is still evolving, local cooperating partners envision using mill wood waste and municipal paper and cardboard waste as the feedstock for the bricks. Wrangell is home to two small mills, one of which processes up to 1.5 million board feet of timber annually generating an estimated 2,000 tons of wood waste. Typically, this waste is disposed of in burn piles, but mill owner Mike Allen says he sees a business opportunity as well as a cleaner and safer way to deal with this inevitable waste stream.

“Last year the burning of my wood waste caused a fire that cost me 20,000 board feet of milled lumber,” Allen said. “As a mill owner and operator, I am always looking for ways to get the most value from my product, and using this waste to create a burnable and sellable fuel would do just that. - More...
Saturday - March 03, 2012

Ketchikan: University of Alaska Southeast Fisheries Technology Program to Offer Class to High School Students Across Alaska - Tremendous career opportunities in the fisheries sector await high school graduates, yet many Alaskan high school students are unaware of them.

An exciting new class offered by the UAS Fisheries Technology Program is aimed at introducing young men and women to fisheries careers. The class will expose students to the various fishing sectors in Alaska such as fisheries management, fish processing, marketing, commercial fishing, charter operations, and salmon enhancement projects. Students will then visit fisheries professionals and tour a breadth of fishing operations and facilities in their home communities.  

The goal of the class is to emphasize to Alaskan students how important fisheries are to our coastal communities. The class will highlight regional opportunities while letting students know what they may need to study to take advantage of these prospects. The class is being expanded based on a pilot offering in Sitka last year. In this pilot class, students toured commercial fishing boats, seafood processing facilities, salmon hatcheries and state fishery agency offices. Students heard first-hand from people in the industry about the career paths.  - More...
Saturday - March 03, 2012

Ketchikan: Two Arrested in Undercover Drug Operation - Officers of the Ketchikan Police department and the Alaska State Troopers executed a search warrant Thursday at a Saxman residence.  The search was the conclusion of an undercover drug operation stemming from the sales of methamphetamine. Officers arrested Donald L. Turley, 23 years of age of Ketchikan Alaska.

During the search, drugs, drug paraphernalia, a stolen hand gun and over $2,000.00 were seized. 

Turley was charged with Misconduct Involving a Controlled Substance in the Second Degree, A felony, Misconduct Involving a Controlled Substance in the Third Degree, B felony and Theft in the Second Degree, C Felony, for possession of a stolen handgun. - More...
Saturday - March 03, 2012

Southeast Alaska: NOAA to hold public meetings on Southeast Alaska Purse Seine Salmon Fishery - NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service will hold a series of public informational meetings with Southeast Alaska purse seine salmon permit holders and interested individuals. 

The Southeast Alaska purse seine salmon fishery is a commercial fishery in Alaska state waters and adjacent Federal waters. It encompasses the commercial taking of salmon with purse seine gear, and participation is limited to fishermen designated by the Alaska Commercial Fisheries Entry Commission (CFEC). - More...
Saturday - March 03, 2012

Southeast Alaska: Cold Case: Man Arrested For 1996 Murder - The Alaska State Troopers, Alaska Bureau of Investigation, Cold Case Investigators traveled to Butte, Montana to arrest and extradite Robert D. Kowalski on the outstanding $1,000,000.00 warrant for the charges of Murder in the First Degree and Murder in the Second Degree in the death of Sandra M. Perry in 1996.

Kowalski was serving time in Montana on an unrelated 2008 murder. Kowalski waived his extradition and was arrested by the Cold Case Investigators where he was transported to Juneau, Alaska. On 3/1/2012, Kowalski was remanded into the Lemon Creek Correctional Center, Juneau, Alaska.

On September 30, 2011, a State of Alaska Grand Jury in Juneau, indicted Robert D. Kowalski, age 50, charging him with Murder in the First Degree and Murder in the Second Degree. The indictment stemmed from a July 21, 1996 incident at Glacier Bear Lodge in Yakutat, Alaska, where Sandra M. Perry age 39, was killed as a result of a single gunshot to the head.

Perry and Kowalski had been living together in the State of Washington but had traveled to Yakutat, Alaska for a vacation. Kowalski, age 34 at the time, claimed he and Perry heard a bear outside of their room and were afraid so Kowalski reported he armed himself with a shotgun. Kowalski stated he tripped onto the bed and fell onto Perry. As he was getting up, Kowalski alleged the gun accidentally discharged, striking Perry in the head. A man in the next room, reported he had overheard an argument, followed by a single gunshot and then silence. - More...
Saturday - March 03, 2012


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letter ACES Needs to Be Fixed, but HB 110 Is Not the Solution By Senator Bert Stedman - Alaska’s current petroleum tax system, Alaska’s Clear and Equitable Share (or ACES, for short), was an ill-conceived policy pushed through by then Governor Sarah Palin in 2007.  When ACES was voted on in the Senate, I was one of only five Senators who voted against it.  My reason was simple: I felt then and I still feel that ACES is anything but “equitable” and that under ACES the government take at high oil prices is excessive.  - More...
Wednesday PM - February 29, 2012

letter Ketchikan's Energy Strategy. By Ken Bylund - Who is John Galt? The Ketchikan City Council is considering the problem of dwindling electrical hydro-electric capacity? Good. The Mahoney Lake issue then... still not being considered? We still face the + $50 million pool & library bonds... now citizens are being told they might need to go back to wood burning stoves so SEAPA can heat the new pool/spa and new library? And SEAPA, do they have a gun to our head? It appears we have met their criteria; can we now buy power from Cape Fox as discussed in Mr. Bergeron's Opinion page of 9/19/2011? - More...
Wednesday PM - February 29, 2012

letter Open Letter: Is there some place we can relocate? By A. M. Johnson - The following has been sent to our local Assembly members: I want to plant a economic seed with you. One never knows when a seed will take root, one can only plant and wait. - More...
Wednesday PM - February 29, 2012

letter An Open Letter to Governor Parnell By Towns of Thorne Bay, Kupreanof, Edna Bay, Port Protection, Pt. Baker, Hollis, Whale Pass, Naukati, and Cape Pole - We are extremely disappointed that after eight months your office was unable to respond to the July 18th, 2011 letter from our Nine Alaska Towns, but hope you will respond to this letter. - More...
Wednesday PM - February 29, 2012

letter RE: Conservation Is The Answer... By Pete Ellis = The opinion by Sam on electrical resources is excellent as to background and current status. - More...
Wednesday PM - February 29, 2012

letter Ketchikan Fireworks By Pete Ellis - The efforts of Arriola and his crew produced a super display and a need for contributions for deposit at Tongass Federal. - More...
Wednesday PM - February 29, 2012  

letter Conservation Is the Answer to Our Short Term Hydro Energy Needs By Samuel Bergeron - The Ketchikan City Council is considering the problem of dwindling electric hydro-electric capacity; a problem largely driven by the use of electric heat. Some of their proposed solutions are troubling to me as it will penalize residents who rely in part or in whole for electricity for their heating needs. - More...
Monday PM - February 27, 2012

letter Postal budget fix By A. M. Johnson - Reading news articles relating to the pending increase in first class postage to $.50 per stamp. This news along with awareness of the huge budget deficit, billions of dollars, the Post Office is experiencing year after year, some outside of the box thinking is in order. - More...
Monday PM - February 27, 2012

letter FIREWORKS: THANKS KEN ARRIOLLA AND CREW By Katy Taylor - The light show at 6:00pm Saturday night was outstanding. The effort Ken Arriolla and his crew gave to get up to the tops of two mountains for the dramatic display for all of Ketchikan to enjoy was amazing. - More...
Monday PM - February 27, 2012

letter Fireworks By Judith Green - Thank you to Ken and crew for climbing to the tippee top in the cold and through the snow to give Ketchikan the wonderful show of fireworks - giving us the thrill of just watching in awe on a cold and wintry night! - More...
Monday PM - February 27, 2012

letter RE" A future disappointment By Scott Cragun - I have personally stopped twice in the last two years at the Mountain Point Boat launch when I noticed 2 different individuals towing derelict boats with the intention of parking them at the far end of the parking lot and leaving them. Both times I informed them that if the boat was left there I would pass along their license plate numbers to the troopers, neither vessel was there later in the day. - More...
Friday PM - February 24, 2012

letter Defense Cuts Endanger Our National Security By Donald A. Moskowitz - The 2013 Defense Department budget cuts military spending by $487 billion over 10 years, which translates into eliminating six Air Force fighter squadrons, cutting 16 ships from the Navy, and reducing the Army and Marine Corps by 80,000 to 100,000 troops over five years.  Our thinking is that future wars will be fought with more high technology weapons and fewer troops.  The problem is we could lose highly qualified military personnel because of the cutbacks.  The end result could mean we will have a plethora of high technology weapon systems available, but lack the quantity and quality of non-commissioned and commissioned military leaders to employ the equipment. - More...
Friday PM - February 24, 2012

letter Freedom By Linda Bell - There is a former Sheriff... Sheriff Richard Mack who has been traveling all over America for several years giving talks on the importance of law enforcement to understand and obey the oath they took to protect individual Rights. (He throws in corruption from D.C. that has been going on for decades also.) - More...
Friday PM - February 24, 2012

letter A FUTURE DISAPPOINTMENT AVERTED By Jerry Cegelske - A woman who just recently moved to Ketchikan stopped by the office and asked about volunteering to help clean up trash in our community.  I told her about some of the past projects that have been done on Revilla road, North and South Tongass, and within the City with the High School.  After talking for awhile, she left her name and a phone number after I explained that much of the work would start in April before the leaves were on the trees and brush. - More...
Monday PM - February 20, 2012

letter 'Just Another Routine Fright North' By Marshall H. Massengale - Although I'm a lower 48er, I always enjoy reading Dave Kiffer's columns his frequent digressions and occasional misspellings and other grammatical faux pas notwithstanding.  But it seems every so often, hizzoner the author takes a cut or two at the "hometown airline." - More...
Monday PM - February 20, 2012 

letter Old grunt squashing By David G. Hanger - In general terms, Mr. Bylund, you are correct.  It is considered bad form to compare anybody to Hitler.  But if someone is acting like a damned Hitlerian, I am not going to hesitate to point that out very succinctly.  About monsters I do not think one should be polite for even a nanosecond.  Depriving U.S. citizens of 1.5 billion man years of life I consider absolutely monstrous and insane.  Doing that by manipulating governmental policy is evil.  Congressman Paul Ryan wants to destroy the safety net completely, on the essential premise of Ayn Rand’s philosophy that those in need should perish out of hand as an inconvenience to the rest of us.  “Let parasites perish as they should.” - More...
Monday PM - February 20, 2012

letter The End of Liberty Is Here By Katheryn Burson - The NDAA passed without hearings, thereby cementing the U.S. as a police state giving law enforcement the right to detain and imprison us WITHOUT charges or due process.  Police brutality is being covered up by grabbing of citizen’s cell phones & cameras to prevent filming. - More.....
Monday PM - February 20, 2012

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