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SitNews - Stories In The News - Ketchikan, Alaska
May 28, 2010

Klawock Herring Fishery
Front Page Photo by EARL JEFFREY

Southeast Alaska: Agencies Pursue Jobs and Community Stability for SE Alaskan Communities while Developing New Approach to Forest Management in the Tongass - In a letter Wednesday to the Tongass Futures Roundtable, the U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service, in partnership with USDA Rural Development, is proposing a "Transition Framework" to provide jobs and community economic stability for Southeast Alaska. The letter proposes a new approach to forest management on the Tongass National Forest that will move timber harvesting into roaded, young-growth areas and away from old-growth timber in roadless areas.

Two USDA agencies hosted listening sessions last fall in Southeast Alaska to gain insight into area community economics. The Forest Service and Rural Development asked communities how USDA agencies could help broaden Southeast Alaska's economic base. As a result of those sessions, the agencies are working to develop a "Transition Framework" program to help communities transition to a more diversified economy by providing jobs around renewable energy, forest restoration, tourism and recreation, subsistence, and fisheries and mariculture.

The agencies are joining with Department of Commerce's Economic Development Administration to create the Transition Framework and will pursue this via a project implementation team composed of government agencies. The team will work closely with communities and community members; other federal agencies; state, local and Tribal governments; Tribal corporations; and the for-profit and non-profit sectors. - More...
Friday - May 28, 2010

Southeast Alaska: New Prince of Wales Health Care Center Dedicated- Hundreds of people attended the dedication of the Prince of Wales Health Care Center in Craig last Saturday's (May 24). The new 11,000 square-foot building replaced the Craig Clinic when it opened April 19. It houses the PeaceHealth Medical Group - Prince of Wales clinic, Ketchikan based Community Connections and a state Public Health Clinic.

Craig Mayor Millie Schoonover and Ketchikan General Hospital CEO Patrick Branco
Photo taken by Ken Hintz, KGH Marketing Manager

The new PeaceHealth Medical Group-Prince of Wales clinic offers Primary Care, lab, diagnostic imaging, visiting physicians exam rooms, opportunities for telemedicine, and advanced electronic medical record that connects the new clinic with the PeaceHealth system.

Planning for the new facility began five years ago with a meeting between Ketchikan General Hospital CEO Patrick Branco and City of Craig Administrator Jon Bolling to discuss a partnership for a new health care facility. The association between PeaceHealth and the City of Craig is similar to the relationship Ketchikan General Hospital has with the City of Ketchikan. PeaceHealth will operate the clinic while the City of Craig maintains ownership of the building. - More...
Friday - May 28, 2010

Alaska: Invasive Plant Seeds Found in Nursery Stock Sent to Alaska - Dealing with the problems created by invasive species can be demanding in terms of time, effort, and money.

Once a population of invasive plants becomes established it can often take years of concentrated effort to control and eradicate even a small area. Individuals, natural resource managers, and scientists working on the problem of invasive plants all agree that prevention is the best approach.

Compared to the rest of the United States, Alaska is in the unique position of having a small invasive plant problem. This allows the state to focus more of its resources on prevention. It also allows Alaskans to learn from the wealth of research and practical experience developed from the decades of invasive plant control in the rest of the country. This knowledge could be used to develop effective strategies for the prevention of future invasions.

In 2004, the Forest Service's Alaska Region Forest Health Protection program partnered with the USDA Agricultural Research Service, to examine the ways invasive species have spread into Alaska. This research was recently published in the journal "Invasive Plant Science and Management."

ARS researchers Jeff Conn, Casie Stockdale, and Jenny Morgan determined that one potential pathway for the spread of invasive plants to Alaska could be seeds buried in the soil of container- grown ornamental plants. Ornamentals are typically grown in one location and then transported to other locations where they are planted as a part of gardens and lawns. Other kinds of seed may occur as contaminants in the ornamental stock container soil.

Dr. Conn decided to investigate just how many seeds from other plants hitchhiked along with the ornamentals that Alaskans commonly purchase at local greenhouses, nurseries and other retail outlets.

The researchers started by surveying retailers selling ornamentals in the Anchorage, Fairbanks, and Juneau areas. They recorded what kinds of ornamentals the retailers stocked, how many they sold each year, who their suppliers were and where the suppliers were located. - More...
Friday - May 28, 2010

Alaska: Suspension of Arctic Exploratory Drilling Not Sound Science Says Governor - he Obama Administration announced yesterday that consideration of any applications for exploratory drilling in the Arctic has been suspended until 2011. Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar and Assistant to the President for Energy and Climate Change Carol Browner held a briefing Thursday to discuss the 6 month moratorium on exploratory deepwater drilling and the implementation of new safety measures for offshore oil and gas drilling.

To improve the safety of oil and gas development in federal waters, provide greater environmental protection and substantially reduce the risk of catastrophic events such as the BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill, Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar on Thursday called for aggressive new operating standards and requirements for offshore energy companies and ordered a six-month moratorium on deepwater drilling. He also canceled a pending lease sale in the Gulf of Mexico and a proposed lease sale off the coast of Virginia, and suspended proposed exploratory drilling in the Arctic.

Following that announcement, Alaska Governor Sean Parnell expressed great frustration with the Obama administration regarding the "deferment" of Arctic Outer Continental Shelf exploration.

In a prepared statement, Gov. Parnell said, "The decision to suspend drilling operations in the Arctic Ocean is based on fear, not sound science. Alaskans have experienced firsthand the ravages of an oil spill with the Exxon Valdez in 1989. We never want to repeat that experience, and our hearts go out to Gulf Coast residents suffering from the effects of the Deepwater Horizon tragedy. On the other hand, Shell's proposed exploration plan in the Chukchi and Beaufort seas has been reviewed extensively."

Gov. Parnell said, "I simply cannot understand how the federal government could approve plans of exploration only five months ago - approvals that were upheld by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ­ but now refuse to take the final step in a long regulatory process and not authorize Shell's permits to drill. Shell's leases should be extended, and they should be able to continue seeking permits from the Environmental Protection Agency and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration."

"This unnecessary delay will have a significant impact on the economy," said Parnell. "Development and production would have immediately created hundreds of jobs, generated revenue for federal, state and local governments, and helped extend the life of the Trans-Alaska Pipeline System. More importantly, development and production would have provided a domestic source of oil to help meet the nation's energy needs and ease our dependence on foreign sources."

Parnell said, "The operating conditions in the shallow water of the Arctic Outer Continental Shelf are materially different from those encountered in the extreme deepwater Gulf of Mexico. Shell's prevention and response plans meet or exceed the stringent requirements to operate in Alaska."

"Over the past three years the State of Alaska has participated with federal agencies in the review of Shell's proposed Plan of Exploration. Vigorous opposition has led to administrative and court challenges on almost every front. Those challenges were summarily rejected, including a decision from the Ninth Circuit only two weeks ago rejecting the meritless claims of multiple environmental groups and coastal villages," said the Governor.

U.S. Sen. Mark Begich (D-AK) also expressed his frustration with the decision. In a prepared statement Begich said, "I am frustrated that this decision by the Obama Administration to halt offshore development for a year will cause more delays and higher costs for domestic oil and gas production to meet the nation's energy needs."

Begich said, "The Gulf of Mexico tragedy has highlighted the need for much stronger oversight and accountability of oil companies working offshore, but Shell has updated its plans at the administration's request and made significant investments to address the concerns raised by the Gulf spill. They make an effective case that we can safely explore for oil and gas this summer in the Arctic." - More...
Friday - May 28, 2010

Columns - Commentary

DAVE KIFFER: For Whom The Grass Grows: Not Thee! By DAVE KIFFER - Ah spring, when everyone's hopes are eternal and every team still has a chance.

No, I'm not talking about baseball. I'm talking about gardening. In Our Fair Salmon City.

It's May and that means everyone is dutifully surveying the Back Muskeg and pondering the imponderables.

Like "Is coho manure really better than cow manure?"

Or "Why do folks persist in trying to grow things that require 'direct sunlight' here?"

Or "Why have so many fungus gnats been elected to the State Legislature?"

Yes, hope spring eternal, doesn't it?

And if you don't think folks are "teeming" to do this, then you haven't been at the local garden emporiums on recent weekends. Dozens of them picking over "plantlets" and comparing mulch and pondering what kind of "flaming fountain" would look best next to the hydrangeas on the deck. And yes, teams are involved. One member of the team picks out the stuff, while the other member carries it.

We are in the middle of one of the most verdant spots on earth and yet, folks - including some that I know very, very well - persist in wanting to create more "growth" and will go to great lengths to accomplish it.

It's probably the same genetic thing that has been infesting this continent for the past five centuries.

No question about it, the first "settlers" to the continent five hundred years ago (as opposed to the first inhabitants who came here several thousand years ago) were not "xeriscapists." No modern let nature be nature ethos for them. - More...
Wednesday - May 26, 2010

Alaska Science: Climber-turned-scientist ponders Alaska Range formation By NED ROZELL - About 15 years ago, a distinguished geology professor named David Hopkins noticed that one of his brightest students wasn't captivated by the course Hopkins was teaching. After class, he called the young man to his desk.

Climber-turned-scientist ponders Alaska Range formation

Climber and geologist Jeff Benowitz pictured in the Alaska Range.
Photo courtesy Jeff Benowitz.

"Jeff," he said, "If you're not into this, don't waste your time with it. Do what you're interested in."

"Well, I'm interested in climbing," said Jeff Benowitz.

And, for a decade, climbing is what Benowitz did. He pioneered new routes in the Alaska Range. He spent summers high in the mountains, sometimes bagging peaks from Denali base camp on the Kahiltna Glacier, subsisting on the excess food of other climbers.

Throughout that climbing-rat experience, Benowitz never stopped looking at the mountains with a geologist's eyes. He baffled his climbing partners by stuffing into his pack rocks the weight of bowling balls. Sometimes, when snow and wind pinned him inside his tent, he put aside his Russian novels and pondered why the Alaska Range surrounding him was such a peculiar arc of peaks and gaps.

Benowitz, now a graduate student in the University of Alaska Fairbanks' Geology and Geophysics Department, will soon combine his mountaineering and science interests high in the Alaska Range. Beginning in June, he will work with a team of scientists to investigate how Alaska's most iconic mountain range formed.

Benowitz and researchers from UAF, Syracuse University and the University of California, Davis will soon camp beneath the shoulder of 12,339-foot Mount Deborah, collecting rocks that may help solve the mystery of when, why and how the Alaska Range rose, as part of a National Science Foundation-funded project.

"The big picture is how do mountain ranges grow?" said Paul Layer, Benowitz's doctoral degree advisor, and professor in UAF's department of Geology and Geophysics Department as well as the Geophysical Institute, and Layer is also a participant in the fieldwork. - More...
Friday - May 28, 2010


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Questions, please contact the editor at or call 617-9696.

letterOil Spills as an Opportunity... By Donald Lee Struthers - What an opportunity. With the April 2010 oil spill situation in the Gulf of Mexico comes several opportunities. - More...
Friday - May 28, 2010

letterDungeness By Chris Snyder - There is something very telling in Mr. Gossman's letters regarding the summer dungie fishery. Apparently he thinks that a crab cares WHICH user group harvests him. This simply is not the case. A crab is a fairly simple critter. He doesn't have the ability to look around at the boat deck he is on and say "sure am glad I got caught by this sport fisherman, or retired visitor, or whomever instead of", gasp!, "someone trying to make a living". - More...
Friday - May 28, 2010

letterLocation of Library By Rita Leighton - I understand the library needs more room - but wouldn't it be much simpler to just move the museum out to a different location - possibly somewhere next to the cruise ship docks? There is a vacant lot between the Federal Building & the Logging Show, and that would give the library room to expand in its current, convenient location. - More...
Friday - May 28, 2010

letterFY2011 Capital Budget By Senator Bert Stedman - Governor Parnell has indicated that he intends to veto a significant number of projects in this year's Capital Budget. That would be a mistake. - More...
Wednesday - May 26, 2010

letterGovernment Regulation By R.K. Rice - DEROY MURDOCK's column "Era of unlimited government arrives" stated "Perhaps one of the most important accomplishments of my administration has been minding my own business," President Calvin Coolidge told journalists in March 1929. - More...
Wednesday - May 26, 2010

letterTax Heroes By Michael Spence - I have read with great interest the stream of letters coming to Sitnews about our high taxes and how to avoid them. - More...
Monday - May 24, 2010

letterWhere are your taxes going? By Jean Griffin - Taxpayers, where are your dollars going? - More...
Monday - May 24, 2010

letterParking Carnival By George Miller - Can you hear the calliope music as the parking carnival gets underway? Do people working downtown set an alarm clock so they know when to trot about looking for a place to park, thus possible avoiding the inevitable ticket? Is it worth ten bucks to not miss a sale during the season, and just roll over and pay? - More...
Monday - May 24, 2010

letterGreat Library Site By Gay D. Peters - The best place to have the new library is Copper Ridge. I drive and it's almost impossible to find a parking space and now there will be plenty of spaces available. - More...
Monday - May 24, 2010

letterLibrary By Robert McRoberts - Over the last few years living in Ketchikan, I think our Borough government has been improving -- maybe from knowing and liking most all working there. With that said, I feel the city is just nuts. Why do we need this library? Where is your planing here? you have no place to build it, no thought at all in the area you select for the site. You get a good deal on the site, but what is the site? Have you dug holes yet? Yet that area is under development. It's going to have some kind of construction activity there for 30 years. Go ahead, put people out of work so you can have quiet. The only good thing I see about putting it there is the jail can let people check out books. - More...
Monday - May 24, 2010

letterDwindling Fish Stocks By Carol Baines - It's estimated that seven out of ten people on the planet depend on fish as their primary source of nutrition. According to the experts, at the rate the seas are being degraded due to over-fishing and pollution, in approximately 40 years there will be no more fish. This all spells trouble --- a catastrophe for our future generations, our children and grandchildren. Fish provide roughly 40 per cent of the protein consumed by nearly two-thirds of the world's population. For example, over a billion people throughout Asia depend on fish and seafood as their major source of animal protein. Here in Alaska we have enjoyed our salmon, halibut, red snapper, et al. and don't want to see the stocks diminish or be contaminated. - More...
Monday - May 24, 2010

letterRecent posts regarding pool By Zig Ziegler - appreciate Sitnews and the forum it provides for healthy discussion of our community's issues. I truly appreciate it when there is disagreement amongst posts that remains civil and to the point, rather than a personal attack, while addressing different opinions. - More...
Friday - May 21, 2010

letterDo Not Participate By Lloyd Gossman - Please do not participate in the sale or purchase of Dungeness Crab caught by Commercial fisherman during the summer in Southeast Alaska. This fishery is scheduled to open June 15th, 2010. - More...
Thursday PM - May 20, 2010

letter RE: Dopey Mushers By Dale Albertson - Well all be! WOW! Would someone please inform John that users of "dope" of this sort does not produce hallucinations? Talk to almost all street cops John, they would much rather deal with a person influenced by THC, which is the active ingredient in Cannabis, than to deal with a drunk. The person on "pot" there I said it, just gets the munchies and wants to lay down and go to sleep. Drunks are seldom non-violent, cause many accidents and deaths annually. I have dealt with both types hundreds of times in my many careers going back to early 70's, and the results have never differed except for the amount of violence one person can perpetrate on another when drunk. I have never in my long career had to deal with a violent pot head. Oh, and no I am not nor have I ever been a user of pot. I have observed a person on pot function and be a contributing productive member of society, and am always amazed, having been fed the same falsehoods you seem to have latched onto. - More...
Thursday PM - May 20, 2010

letterRe: New Pool By Chris Barry - Poor silly people. Do you honestly believe that if something benefits you, that it benefits the community as a whole? You need to wake up. I have never said I oppose replacing the pool. I understand it is needed for many activities in this community and that the current facilities would be too costly to repair correctly. - More...
Thursday PM - May 20, 2010

letterYouTube Violence By TJ Wilson - I am still having trouble believing that the youth in Ketchikan is so devoid of humanity and right feelings that it has taken me a while here to come to grips with it and speak out. I, of course, am speaking of the You Tube episode wherein many teens bullied an unfortunate individual. And the resulting lack of prosecution or official condemnation of their actions. - More...
Tuesday - May 18, 2010

letterTravesty, indeed. By P. J. Travis - The Copper Ridge site for a new library is not the site we supported or spoke for. The friends and neighbors we discussed the new library site with seemed to support the current downtown location, Heckman or Main School site. - More...
Tuesday - May 18, 2010

letterRE: Something's Fishy Here By Chris Rose - In response to Terri Anderson's opinion letter, I'm not sure what country you live in, but it's obvious that your a person who chooses to live in a paranoid delusional state when it comes to recent facts about BP spill in the Gulf. Its very doubtful that 'people all over the country' are getting the 'vibe' of your conspiracy theory of domestic terrorism. Any reasonable person would see that the evidence, based on eye witness first person account (see this weeks 60 Minutes story), that the explosion on the BP oil rig was as a result of a consistent disregard of industry safety practices designed to protect workers and the environment. - More...
Tuesday - May 18, 2010

letterDishonesty and a Gallon of Milk By Sandy Powers - Saturday evening about 6:00 in front of Safeway I witnessed something disturbing. A gallon of milk fell off a woman's cart, unnoticed by her, as she made her way to her car. Before I could go pick it up for her, a small white sedan, license plate FCL-561, stopped; the woman driver picked up the milk and then continued to drive slowly toward me. I called out to her, "Hey, that milk fell of that woman's cart" as I pointed out the woman who had lost the gallon of milk. "Just getting it out of the street" the driver replied, and then to my amazement proceeded to drive out of the parking lot and away. - More...
Tuesday - May 18, 2010

letterResponse to "New Pool" By Natalie Ripplinger - I read people's viewpoints on SitNews and it shocks me to read entries like "New Pool." Someone felt it was necessary to post about how they don't need a community service for themselves personally??!! Well, I feel like that's just really inconsiderate!! You may not need the pool, but a person should feel that when their community or members in their community benefit, that they in turn benefit too. - More...
Tuesday - May 18, 2010

letter ABOMINATION: The Non-Profit That Wants to Make a Whole Industry Non-Profitable By David G. Hanger - In the history of Ketchikan there have been an incredible number of scams. In the past decade alone we have had "Pips," the "Wooden Bowl Scam," and Veneergate I & II. We still have a city manager who views us as his servants. He is now selling at least part of that public monstrosity that is wrongfully competing with the private sector. Hopefully, the TV and internet crap are sold, too. - More...
Tuesday - May 18, 2010

letterFinal Library Vote - a Travesty By Roberta "Bobbie" McCreary - What a Travesty! Last night's Council vote selected Copper Ridge (at the end of the 3rd Avenue Bypass) as the development site for the new Library for the next 50 years by default, not by choice. Comments made about the public (and the Council) being split down the middle actually reflected preferences for "downtown" or "not downtown" NOT reflecting one-half favoring Copper Ridge. I feel certain about this because I spoke to many people, adults and youth, with an open question, "What do you think about Copper Ridge as a location for the new Library." I estimate 85 to 90% said, in effect, "no way!" - More... (Link Corrected)
Friday PM - May 14, 2010

letterLet the voters decide By Rodney Dial - Apparently a few of my recent letters have upset some people regarding the pool. To those individuals I would simply say that I have never been against a community pool. In one letter I stated my belief that it is an important community asset. - More...
Friday PM - May 14, 2010

letterThe American Flag By Kathy Flora - Monday May 31, is Memorial Day. As we salute the American Flag, and remember those whose coffins were draped by the flag, let us pay tribute to all veterans who served their country, and defended the rights and privileges which we, the living enjoy. - More...
Friday PM - May 14, 2010

letterNew Pool By Chris Barry - For the record, not everyone will benefit from a new pool. I don't even benefit from the old pool, and I am sure there are thousands of locals who, like myself, have never used the pool in the past and plan to never use the pool in the future, old or new. - More...
Friday PM - May 14, 2010

letterRE: Dopey mushers By Margery Glickman - John Suter raised excellent points when he wrote: "The next thing that ITC does not have is drug testing transparency for the dogs on the trail. No one is allowed to see the drug test results. Why is that? How does any one know that the dogs are in fact drug tested?" - More...
Friday PM - May 14, 2010

letterKing salmon bycatch, intercepted as well. By Michael A. Jimmy - This is good news for the chum salmon but for our mighty King salmon which also returns to migrate back to its spawning ground as far as the Yukon Territory in Canada does not do so well for us down here at Emmonak. Most of them, vital for our survival as subsistence and for economic benefit are caught as bycatch or intercepted before they have a chance to make it to the AYK and South Eastern Fisheries. This will be our third year this summer not being able to commercial fish for the mighty Yukon river king salmon. The fat content of this fish far surpasses the chum as well as the coho salmon.- More...
Friday PM - May 14, 2010

letterOceansAlaska Update By David Mitchel - I would like to update the community on progress at OceansAlaska. OceansAlaska Marine Science Center is a community-based non-profit with a volunteer board of directors and a multidimensional focus on education, mariculture development, and the display of local marine species. The Marine Science Center is a way to provide investment in a sustainable, year-around industry, as well as advance our children's education and help Ketchikan become a more attractive place to visit and live. It is infrastructure for the entire community and helpful for growing our economy. - More...
Tuesday - May 11, 2010

letterRE: Something's Fishy Here By Dave Head - I am responding to a view of: Terri Anderson in which she blames environmentalists for 2 recent oil rig disasters. Is there any chance she is related to Sarah Palin? Because frankly I have never read such a load of nonesense in my life. - More...
Tuesday PM - May 11, 2010

letterRE: Something's Fishy Here By Peter Jacob - I would like to present this response to Terri Anderson's opinion letter, "Something's Fishy Here". There are three possible reasons for the coming to the conclusions that you did in your letter: - More...
Tuesday PM - May 11, 2010

letterDopey Mushers By John Suter - ITC has reported that two Iditarod mushers have tested positive on THC. ITC will not disclose the identities of the two dopey mushers. The reason for this is because they are in the good old boy net work receiving special privileges and double standards. You can take it to the bank, that if they were women, natives or other minorities who tested positive on their drug test, ITC would hang them out to dry. This is not the right way, but the white way. It is ITC's different strokes, for different folks. - More...
Tuesday PM - May 11, 2010

letterSupporting a New Pool By Vicki O'Brien - With the dearth of indoor recreation opportunities available in Ketchikan, I find it absolutely crazy that anyone would oppose the construction of a new Borough pool. We talk incessantly about how "there's nothing to do.." yet when the time come to construct a facility that everyone - EVERYONE - in the community can benefit from, there are actually opponents! Young, old, athletic, obese, able-bodied, disabled... there is not a segment of our community who could not benefit from a new pool. - More...
Tuesday PM - May 11, 2010

letterLand fill By Robert McRoberts - Recently there has been talk about letting S&S Construction dump waste in a borough land fill. Here's the deal guys, by doing this you tell many of us local contractors to bend over. If you're going to open up this area so it can be filled I think you had better take waste fill from every one of us. Make us get a key at the time we dump and lock up when done. We would be responsible for what we dump. - More...
Tuesday PM - May 11, 2010

letterCan't we work this out? In support of the Oceans Alaska Project By Jennifer Castle - I am a Mother with a preschool age child, I cannot tell you how much my son and other families enjoy the small aquarium tank outside the office in the mall. Seeing local sea creatures up close, and being able to ask questions and see them feed is a rare treat for adults and children alike. To me, this seems like just the beginnings of a wonderful relationship between Oceans Alaska and the people of Ketchikan. - More...
Tuesday AM - May 04, 2010

letterBorough property tax rate By Dave Kiffer - I was surprised to read, in a recent letter to SITNEWS, that the borough property tax rate will go up this year because of the replacement pool project. - More...
Tuesday AM - May 04, 2010

letterRe: Better management leads to lower taxes. By Ken Bylund - Mr. Dial... always refreshing to watch an effective observer criticize the devil; amazing how the majority of our species don't seem to notice as the current pack of predators skim ever increasing portions of our potential and freedom while they promote some feel-good give-away described as another crisis by our news creators; they and we have been mesmerized, ignoring that snakelike stealth of career politicians moving us toward absolute social fascism. - More...
Tuesday AM - May 04, 2010

letterSwimming Pool By Jon Hurley - I wish Mr. Dial would attend a swimmg meet with the wind blowing and the rain pouring down. I know that he would love to have the tar dripping on his head and the roof shaking. - More...
Tuesday AM - May 04, 2010

letterOpen Letter To Ketchikan City Council: Ketchikan Public Library Concerns By Robert D. Warner - The following are basic questions that I feel need to be answered prior to any decisions being made on the future location of the Ketchikan Public Library. This is an important long term decision. The community will have to live with it for many years to come. We must not be pressured into hasty decisions by special interest groups. - More...
Tuesday AM - May 04, 2010

letterTalent on Revilla Island By Judith Green - Never a disappointment is the music community on our island. We have great talent and not just talent, as my son reminded me, but we have people in Ktn who 'inspire' and encourage all ages and abilities to share that which they have and enjoy. - More...
Tuesday AM - May 04, 2010

letterThank You Ketchikan By Nicole Esau - Dear Ketchikan Residents, I have been living in Ketchikan for the last 5 1/2 years. I consider it my home. I recently was in a boating accident and spent 3 hours in the cold Gulf of Alaska on my way to fish herring and Salmon. I was traveling on the Northern Belle that went down quickly in the Gulf. It was a both horrifiy and life changing experience. I wanted to write because it was noted in several sources that I was from various places in the Northwest. I have been avoiding national media. - More...
Tuesday AM - May 04, 2010

letterKayhi and Revilla Class of 2010 Graduation Party By Ginny Clay - Dear Parents of Graduating Seniors, as you know every year the parents get together and throw a graduation party for the Seniors, this year is no exception. There are many fun and exciting things planned for a wonderful event at the Plaza Mall on the night of graduation. BUT we need your help! - More...
Tuesday AM - May 04, 2010

letterWithdraw THE BILL By Alan Stein - The new article "Sealaska Logging in Tongass rainforest would imperil rare species" is a very good article with good illustrations. Great writer. - The new article "Sealaska Logging in Tongass rainforest would imperil rare species" is a very good article with good illustrations. Great writer. - More...
Tuesday AM - May 04, 2010

letterOpen Letter to President Obama: Sealaska Land Bills By Gretchen Goldstein - Dear President Obama, thank you for your muscle and perseverance in getting us some health care reform. - More...
Tuesday AM - May 04, 2010

letterSomething's Fishy Here By Terri Anderson - Just curious, I know a lot of people all over the country are starting to get a vibe, that maybe some or maybe a lot of our extreme environmentalists might be responsible for the two oil rig mishaps that have happened, with precision timing. - More...
Tuesday AM - May 04, 2010

letterRE: Trail Closure By Beth Doddridge - While I do understand the position this writer took I feel I must mention the many other trails that are available to the "public" she made reference to. - More...
Tuesday AM - May 04, 2010

letter "Ozzy" White Persian Found By Kathy Armey - Our beloved Ozzy went missing April 17th from 12 Mile North Tongass. We did everything we could think of to bring Ozzy home. My husband, Doug got a call yesterday and Ozzy was found under a trailer home at 12 mile. He's in pretty good shape for being out in the elements for two weeks.He's skinny, but otherwise okay, just needs a good brushing out and a bath. - More...
Tuesday AM - May 04, 2010

letterGulf Oil Spill Response By Marie-Jeanne Cadle - Here is a number you can call if you are interested in volunteering or working on the gulf oil spill response. Right now they are taking names, skills, training and contact info. They do not have any info about housing, travel, compensation, etc. - More...
Tuesday AM - May 04, 2010

letterRE: Hope this resolves the issue. By Marilyn Catron - There is no need to asked to be excused for giving your opinion here Mr. Jarvi. Isn't that what it's all about? Viewpoints, Opinion Letters? - More...
Tuesday AM - May 04, 3010

letterAircraft Carriers In Jeopardy By Donald A. Moskowitz - An article in the Navy Times entitled "Strike group mission expands far beyond simple escort" has me concerned. - More...
Tuesday AM - May 04, 2010

letterLet's get behind the aquarium By Larry Jackson - This letter is in response to the efforts of many in the tourist industry to thwart the aquarium's efforts to raise federal grant money.  Although I appreciate their concerns of public money being used in a quasi competitive endeavor I think their efforts are bit shortsighted.  - More...
Wednesday PM - April 28, 2010

letterOceans Alaska Submitted By Kirk Thomas for Various Ketchikan Businesses - We, the undersigned, are writing you this letter to state our strong opposition to Oceans Alaska (formerly known as the Tongass Aquarium) becoming a shore excursion tour operator for cruise passengers here in Ketchikan, Alaska. Oceans Alaska has promoted and represented itself as a research, education and shellfish mariculture facility and has successfully applied for and been granted public seed money for all of the progress they have made thus far. - More...
Wednesday PM - April 28, 2010

letterBetter management leads to lower taxes By Rodney Dial - Mr. Harrington, I am going to assume that your letter and assumption that taxes in Ketchikan would somehow be lower if we consolidated a simple attempt to goat me into writing a three page letter on why you are wrong. I will make that assumption because the only alternative is simply that you as a government official are attempting to mislead the public. - More...
Wednesday PM - April 28, 2010

letterOpen Letter to the Ketchikan Borough Assembly Members By Rodney Dial - You guys know that as soon as you raise the mill rate and increase property taxes I am going to write a rather long letter detailing why several of you lied to this community about being able to afford a 23.5 million dollar pool with no tax increase. Right? - More...
Tuesday - April 27, 2010

letterPerserverance Trail Closure By Heather Muench - The Forest Service is planning to close the Perseverance Trail from May 15 to September 30 for trail reconstruction. While I support the much need trail work, I strongly object to the summer long closure. I agree the trail should be closed on days when helicopters will be moving material to and from the area; but not on other days. - More...
Tuesday - April 27, 2010

letter HEAD TAX: VERY BAD CHOICE OF WORDS By Charles Edwardson - It has always bothered me -- the term HEAD TAX. It sounds like a hunting trip. It should be labeled what it is a PORT AND HARBOR TAX. - More...
Tuesday - April 27, 2010

letterTaxes By Sonia Streitmatter - Tourism is a double-edged sword. - More...
Tuesday - April 27, 2010

letterSealaska lands bill By Sarah Red-Laird - I still have a strong connection to Southeast Alaska, although I now live in Montana for school, through my friends and family that remain in the area, and through my crystal clear memories of all the years I spent there, especially those of my childhood on Prince of Wales Island.- More...
Tuesday - April 27, 2010

letterSealaska lands bill By Judy Magnuson - Senator Murkowski stated not too long ago that the government was the largest land owner in Alaska. I wish to correct that statement. The PUBLIC, not the government, is the largest land owner in Southeast Alaska. We the people, native and nonnative own these lands, we have full use of these lands for any use compatible with public use of these lands. This is not an aboriginal rights issue, it is simply the right of citizens and taxpayers who have added value through their tax dollars, time and energy through their efforts to support, preserve, participate and have a say in the management of public lands. We have the right to retain those lands that belong to us and have cost us dearly during the last 40 years. Public lands, heavily invested in should not be given away to a private corporation in order that only a few may profit from them. - More...
Tuesday - April 27, 2010

letterHigh taxes in Ketchikan By John Harrington - It is interesting that Mr. Rodney Dial is complaining about the high taxes in Ketchikan. Our taxes are indeed too high. Those tax rates are higher than most consolidated city/borough governments in Southeast Alaska. When a group of us were attempting to consolidate the two governments, Mr. Dial led the charge to stop it by claiming it would raise our taxes. We had determined quite the opposite in our calculations. But Mr. Dial prevailed in his anti-consolidation efforts and now have received what he tried to avoid, higher taxes. - More...
Friday PM - April 23, 2010

letterKetchikan is becoming more expensive every day. By Rodney Dial - As our national tax day passes, a few things you may want to consider regarding the future of your family's finances. The following is an excerpt from a Newsweek article posted on 4/15/10 titled "Today is the best tax day of your life", by Robert J. Samuelson. Newsweek tends to be a liberal leaning publication and this is not conservative hype. - More...
Friday - April 23, 2010

letterThe times are a changing? By Reed Harding - As the country struggles in the turmoil of unprecedented healthcare reform by the current centrist administration many misguided individuals nash their terrible teeth and groan aloud "we don't want change". I awoke today and realized that I do not recognize my own country. Things have changed so much this past year I can't even point out what has actually changed. In fact, there could have been no change at all but that's not what everyone is saying so it must be a completely new country devoid of any principles and understanding that once existed. I can attest to the validity of the following piece as I wrote it rather than merely copying someone else's opinion. - More...
Friday - April 23, 2010

letterSealaska lands bill By U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski - In a letter concerning the Sealaska lands bill printed on April 14, an Edna Bay resident stated that it was "stunning" that Sealaska had already filed for lands to complete its entitlement under the 1971 Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (ANCSA), as if the matter of filing for lands meant that the current bill is not needed to complete rational land conveyances due Sealaska's 20,000 Alaska Native shareholders. That is not the case. - More...
Wednesday - April 21, 2010

letterOpen Letter to the KGB Mayor & Assembly By Johnnie Laird - Mayor Dave Kiffer and Ketchikan Assembly, I am disappointed that you passed a resolution in favor of the Legislation and didn't join in solidarity in opposition with Sitka, Port Protection, Point Baker, Edna Bay, Hollis, Whale Pass, Thorne Bay, Craig, Naukati, Kake, The US Department of the Agriculture, The US Department of the Interior and many others. - More...
Wednesday - April 21, 2010

letterMay is ALS Awareness Month: Let's STRIKE OUT ALS!! By Linda Kreider - May is ALS Awareness Month!! I will be representing Alaska for the 4th time since 2006, when this disease took my father away from me, my mother, brother and sister and the rest of our family. My sister-in-law, Teri Teal will be travelling with me this year for the 1st time! We leave Ketchikan on Friday, May 7 and will return May 12. We will meeting with our Senators and Representatives on Tuesday May 11. In the past few years, I have been able to have a State of Alaska Proclamation declaring May as ALS Awareness Month for the State of Alaska, and am hoping that we can get the City of Ketchikan, as well as the Ketchikan Gateway Borough to do the same!! - More...
Wednesday - April 21, 2010

letterChanges By A. M. Johnson - As the Country watches the huge social changes imposed by the current liberal administration, many are and more are, becoming concerned as to the Nation holding together with civility. I can not attest to the validity of the following piece, however, even if it were not written by the person listed, it still tells well!! - More...
Wednesday - April 21, 2010

letterTrails and drunks. By Patti Fay Hickox - Where are they going so fast? We only have about 30 miles of road. "What's the hurry, what is everybody hurrying for." Drivers do not stop for people in crosswalks. Remember when most of us walked and smiled and waved at the people going by in cars. People slowed down to wave at their neighbors. I came to Alaska to get out of the cities and a fast pace of life. Now Alaska is moving faster. Everybody going so fast they have no time for their neighbors. - More...
Wednesday - April 21, 2010

letterRe: Married Man's Trail By Laurie Hodne - It was funny timing when I sat down to look at the letters to the editor and the very same subject I was debating on writing about happened to be a "peeve" for someone else. I am not a frequent hiker on Married Man's Trail, but was there when I was searching for the Easter Treasure Hunt and was appalled by the trail and its lack of upkeep. Is that City property? - More...
Wednesday - April 21, 2010

letterMarried Man's Trail and other stuff By Kara McElroy- Steele - Regarding Ms. Susan Coady's letter about Married Mans trail, I have two things to say. Back in the day (if you lived there for 25 yrs you should remember this), it was common place down on the Tongass dock, for homeless drunks to sit and sleep, behind it and in front of it (before it turned into Tourist Central!). You would also see them hangin out around the loop of bars all the way around the corner by Tom Sawyers. - More...
Wednesday - April 21, 2010

letterThanks from The Mainframe LAN Gaming Center By Ryan Avila - I would just like to thank everyone who came down and supported our business this weekend. We hope to continue providing a safe environment for the youth of Ketchikan so that they have a fun alternative to doing drugs and drinking (which is a large problem in Ketchikan). - More...
Wednesday - April 21, 2010

letterHope this resolves the issue By Paul Jarvi - Ms. Catron, Please excuse me for stating an opinion. - More...
Wednesday - April 21, 2010

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