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SitNews - Stories In The News - Ketchikan, Alaska
October 18, 2011

Front Page Photo by KEN ARRIOLA

Termination Dust
Here it comes, and on time; it is quite typical to see the upper elevations turn white in mid-October. The Roy Jones Mountain is in the middle with Northbird Mountain to its left. The Deer Mountain range is in the foreground.
Front Page Photo by KEN ARRIOLA


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Alaska: Flags To Be Lowered for Former Lawmaker Carroll Fader - Governor Sean Parnell has ordered state flags be flown at half-staff on Thursday in honor and memory of former Ketchikan Representative Carroll Fader. Representative Fader died in Sitka on Friday. He was 88.

Flags To Be Lowered for Former Lawmaker Carroll Fader

KGB Mayor Carroll Fader sitting at his desk... circa 1975-1984
Ketchikan Daily News Collection, Ketchikan Museums
Photograph Courtesy Ketchikan Museums

Fader served as mayor of the Ketchikan Gateway Borough serving three terms - nine years - from 1975 to 1984. He was a member of the Ketchikan Gateway Borough Assembly from 1971 through 1974, and 1991 through 1992. Fader also served on the Ketchikan City Council. He served briefly in the Alaska State House in 1992.

“Representative Fader will be remembered for his tremendous dedication to his community and his tireless advocacy for vocational education in Alaska,” Governor Parnell said. “Sandy and I offer our prayers and condolences to his family and friends.” - More...
Tuesday AM - October 18, 2011

Southeast & Alaska: Senator Spotlights Alaska Priorities in 2012 Interior Bill – A number of key projects and priorities for Alaska are contained within the final draft of the 2012 Senate Interior Appropriations bill, made public Friday. 

Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), Ranking Republican on the Committee, said she and Chairman Jack Reed (D-RI) released a draft version of the Senate Interior bill to the public on the Senate Committee on Appropriations website on Friday.

Murkowski said in a prepared statement, “This is a very important piece of legislation for the State of Alaska, since the Department funds the four major federal land management agencies in our state – as well as critical agencies that provide services to Alaska Natives. This will serve as a starting point for negotiations with the House on its version of the bill.”

Some of the important items for Alaska that are included within the Senate Interior bill are:

1)  Language to help foster the offering of economic timber sales in the Tongass National Forest to help maintain the economy in Southeast Alaska. - More...
Tuesday AM - October 18, 2011

Alaska: Obligations for polar bear protection met, judge rules - A federal judge has thrown out a key section of an Interior Department rule concerning the threat to polar bears posed by global warming. District Court Judge Emmet Sullivan held that a special rule under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) adequately provides conservation measures for protecting the polar bear striking down a 2008 Bush administration rule Monday that exempted greenhouse gas emissions from regulation under provisions of the Endangered Species Act.

Polar bear and cubs
Photo by Steve Amstrup
Photo courtesy U.S. Fish and Wild Life Service

Monday's ruling by the District of Columbia federal court denied an environmentalist group’s ESA challenge to the special rule issued by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS). The court’s decision confirms there is no need for additional and unnecessary regulatory permitting requirements. - More...
Tuesday AM - October 18, 2011

Alaska: APF Dividend Division Working to Recover $7 Million in Improperly Paid Funds; Affects a Portion of Alaskans’ Dividends Slated for Garnishment - The Alaska Permanent Fund Dividend Division announced an error occurred in the 2011 Permanent Fund Dividend distribution, affecting some Alaskans whose dividends were slated for garnishment.

Due to a processing error, approximately 5,500 dividends were improperly paid. This also affects a portion of Alaskans who did not receive payments because these garnishments were not collected. While an accurate figure is not yet available, the maximum amount of garnishments would be just under $7 million. The final total is likely to be less than this amount.

The error, discovered on October 10th, does not affect the majority of dividends paid out to Alaskans, including child support payments.

The division announced it is making every effort to recover dividends that were improperly paid to applicants instead of creditors. - More...
Tuesday AM - October 18, 2011

Alaska: NOAA TAKES POSSESSION OF ILLEGAL HIGH-SEAS DRIFT NET FISHING VESSEL IN DUTCH HARBOR - The U.S. Coast Guard transferred possession of the Bangun Perkasa to NOAA's Office of Law Enforcement Saturday evening at about 7 p.m., shortly after the vessel came to port in Dutch Harbor.

The illegal high-seas fishing vessel had undergone the prescribed rat abatement measures, and was cleared late last week to come to port.

After it was determined to be a stateless vessel, the Bangun Perkasa was seized by the Coast Guard about a month ago for high-seas drift net fishing more than 2,600 miles south west of Kodiak, Alaska.

The vessel had over 10 miles of drift net on board and was detected dragging over 2 nautical miles of drift net, a practice universally condemned for indiscriminately killing massive amounts of fish and marine life. The seizure highlighted international cooperative efforts to combat illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing—considered to be a serious threat to American fishing jobs and communities, as well as to the health of the world's oceans.

A Coast Guard cutter escorted the 140-foot vessel to 12 nautical miles off Unalaska Island, but could not allow it to moor in Dutch Harbor until the rat population aboard the vessel could be exterminated.

NOAA's Office of Law Enforcement will have the ship surveyed to determine the value of vessel as well as the catch product aboard – 30 tons of squid and 30 sharks. - More...
Tuesday AM - October 18, 2011

Alaska: Nushagak Juvenile Whale Update - The third of three killer whales that had spent at least three weeks in the Nushagak River has been found dead. The carcass of the juvenile killer whale was found Friday near Grass Island, an island in the Nushagak River across from Dillingham in an area that is tidally influenced.

Based on the description of the location where the animal was found by a local resident, biologists believe the juvenile whale would've had to have swum there, rather than having been carried there by the tide. - More...
Tuesday AM - October 18, 2011


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letter Septic System Boondoggle By Shelley Stallings - I am in complete agreement with Mr. Fry about the waste of money and resources our current septic system policy imposes upon Ketchikan home owners. This one size fits all doesn't fit all, probably only 'fits' 10% or less of home owners. The frequency of pumping needed for any specific septic system varies widely from 1 to 2 years at the high end to possibly 15-20 years on the low end. Being a single occupant home owner who monitors carefully what is being put into my septic tank, I estimate I have easily paid thousands of dollars MORE than required to keep my system operating efficiently since this wasteful program has been in place. - More...
Tuesday AM - October 18, 2011

letter RE: Anti-American Funeral Picketers By Sam Barnard - As a former Alaskan resident and Ketchikan resident, I can assure you Mr. Moskowitz that this group of misfits are being handled. - More...
Tuesday AM - October 18, 2011

letter Pioneers' Home By Donald Charles - The Charles family would like thank everyone at the Ketchikan Pioneers' Home for the care of our mother, Patricia. - More...
Saturday AM - October 15, 2011

letter Update: Morning Bus Stops By Amber Anderson - Ketchikan never ceases to amaze me. The community is very strong and alive here in Ketchikan. People in this community take matters to heart, make a difference and change for the good in our community. - More...
Saturday AM - October 15, 2011

letter Open Letter to KGB: Septic system By Edmund J. Fry, III - I am in receipt of a second notice to pump my septic system from Shoreline Services. - More...
Saturday AM - October 15, 2011

letter Clarification By Art Bailly - Just to clear a few things up. Mr. LeCompte, please go back and re-read my first post on this. To clarify your accusation of me not telling the truth and sounding like Sarah Palin, what I meant by' it doesn t matter' is that it was 6 years ago and I don't remember which cruise line company had the last spot open on the dock and don't remember the number of spots they had. My point was that the cruise ships have more than we do and we need to reserve more spots on the docks for locals to do business. The city said that there are only a certain number (I don't remember what that number is) of spaces on the docks and the only one left was taken by the cruise ships. Not a lie, just don't remember which cruise ship has it and the majority of them. - More...
Saturday AM - October 15, 2011

letter RE: Cruise ships and crossing guards By A. M. Johnson - I resent Tom LaCompt's inclusion, in my opinion, the slander of Sarah Palin's name into his rebuttal. The ability to debate successfully is the ability to focus on the issue. When one's position appears weak and the defense lacks purpose, name calling or besmirching of one's reputation becomes a fall back position in an attempt to deflect from acknowledgement of a that weak position. - More...
Saturday AM - October 15, 2011

letter Alaska is asleep at the switch on natural gas By  Bill Walker - I am perplexed by the lack of industry acknowledgement of Alaska’s vast resources of natural gas. - More...
Wednesday PM - October 12, 2011

letter Anti-American Funeral Picketers By Donald A. Moskowitz - The recent Supreme Court decision upholding the First Amendment right of the Westboro Baptist Church, Topeka, KS to picket at the funerals of military personnel was a victory for our Constitutional rights but a defeat for morality in this country. - More...
Wednesday PM - October 12, 2011

letter Cruise Line Customer Service By Rob Holston - Mr. Bailly has a good point. Unfortunately it doesn't have much to do with the need to provide adequate customer service facilities for cruise ships and vendors. Most citizens could come up with a variety of public needs that government should be addressing. - More...
Wednesday PM - October 12, 2011

letter Crossing Guards Extraordinaire By Chris Elliott - Those of us who work in the downtown area spend a lot of time during the cruise season stopping at the direction of the crossing guards so tourists can cross the street. - More...
Wednesday PM - October 12, 2011

letter RE: Cruise ships and crossing guards By Tom LeCompte - So Mr. Bailly, it doesn't really matter if what you said about who owns what is the truth or if you just made something up to further your point of view. Saying "The truth doesn't matter, this is how I feel," sounds like something Sarah Palin would say. - More...
Wednesday PM - October 12, 2011

letter Cruise ships and crossing guards By Art Bailly - Regarding Mr. LeCompte's letter, it doesn't really matter. All that matters is it's private companies (cruise ships and vendors / excursion tours) wanting a place to do their business out of the rain. It's a private business matter not a City of Ketchikan matter to fund. It's not the city's responsibility to pay for or construct a place for private vendors to do their business. - More...
Monday - October 10, 2011

letter Crosswalks By Suzan Thompson - In response to Art Bailly's letter: if someone in the city's administration told him that $50,000 was too much to spend to put a crosswalk light at the intersection of Carlanna and Baranof, then it seems that a monetary value has been assigned to the life of each child who needs to cross there, and it is not high. - More...
Friday PM - October 07, 2011

letter RE: Cruise Line Customer Service By Tom LeCompte - Regarding Mr Bailly's letter about the operations on the port. I have worked on the docks and also for the KVB over the last 15 years. I am not aware of any off-the-ship businesses owned by any cruise line. Could you perhaps be more specific as to who own what? I think you are mis-informed. - More...
Friday PM - October 07, 2011

letter Pirate Fishing Vessel By Olney Webb - This vessel is a hazmat bomb. Fuel oil, lube oil, refrigeration chemicals. - More...
Friday PM - October 05, 2011

letter Fishing Fleet By Angelo Martin - Why isn't someone pursuing the fishing fleet that's based in Seattle to move to Ketchikan? It's a perfect fit. Do as much as you have done to pursue the cruise ship industry, maybe even give free berthing to lure the fishing fleet. - More...
Wednesday - October 05, 2011

letter RE: Cruise Line Customer Service By Art Bailly - In response to Ms. Gates' letter, here's how I see it. - More...
Wednesday - October 05, 2011

letter Endangered Species By Don Borders - You might have noticed I wrote Species as plural, because there are actually two Southeast Alaska endangered species. One has recently gotten much attention in various publications and the other one has had very little concern by the environmental groups. Both have been able to disguise themselves and have gone into hiding. - More...
Monday - October 03, 2011

letter The Yates Building By Nicole Church - I would like to make the community aware of an opportunity that has recently presented itself. It appears that the Yates building, most recently known as the Seamen’s Center, can be saved from demolition. Restoration seems to be a possibility and at a reasonable cost. If a long term tenant, with a stable cash flow, and a mission that is acceptable to the Church were interested, it is believed by many that financing could be put together. But, it will take the work of Historic Ketchikan, the Ketchikan Historical Commission, the Tongass Historical Society, and the City Officials and Council along with a suitable tenant to make this happen. - More...
Monday - October 03, 2011

letter Challenge Day By Karen Eakes - Challenge Day is once again coming to Ketchikan! The Strengthening Cultural Unity taskforce of the Ketchikan Wellness Coalition in partnership with the Ketchikan School District and School Board is bringing this nationally recognized event to Ketchikan for the third year. We are pleased with the very positive response that the community has given to this organization and appreciative of the generous financial assistance that we have received over the years. - More...
Monday - October 03, 2011

letter Open Letter: Cruise Line Customer Service By Jill Gates - As the cruise ship season wraps up for another year and with the upcoming elections, I would like to express a few concerns I have encountered working with the various Cruise Lines in my capacity of Dock Manager for The Great Alaskan Lumberjack Show specifically issues that have come up over the last 5 years. - More...
Monday - October 03, 2011

letter Woman of Distinction: Fay Freeman By Anita Hales - This past weekend 5 Ketchikan women were honored for their contributions to the community.  I was honored to present 94 year old Fay Freeman. - More...
Monday - October 03, 2011

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