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SitNews - Stories In The News - Ketchikan, Alaska
Monday - Wednesday
October 04, 2020 - October 07, 2020

Front Page Photograph by JEFF LUND

Humpback Whales
Bubble net feeding recently at Knudson Cove. It is one of the few surface feeding behaviors that humpback whales are known to engage in
Front Page Photograph by JEFF LUND ©2020
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Unofficial Election Results
October 06, 2020

Ketchikan Borough Assembly - 3 Year Term (3 Seats Open)
Canvas Board Results Reported 10/12/20
jpg Jeremy Bynum Jeremy Bynum
jpg Amanda 
(AJ) Pierce
(AJ) Pierce
jpg Sheen Davis Sheen Davis
jpg Matthew Merrill Matthew Merrill
jpg Judith McQuerry Judith McQuerry
jpg Trevor A. Shaw

Trevor A. Shaw

Ketchikan School Board - 3 Year Term (2 Seats Open)
jpg Diane Gubatayao

Diane Gubatayao


jpg Alexandra Ginter Alexandra Ginter
jpg Paul Robbins Jr. Paul Robbins Jr.
Ketchikan School Board - 1 Year Term (2 Seats Open)
jpg Tom Heutte Tom Heutte
jpg Nicole Anderson Nicole Anderson
jpg Kim Hodne Kim Hodne
Ketchikan City Council - 3 Year Term (3 Seats Open)
Canvas Board Results Reported 10/07/20
Count including absentee, questioned & special needs ballots.
jpg Jai Mahtani Jai Mahtani
jpg Richard Coose Richard Coose
jpg Abby Bradberry Abby Bradberry
jpg Riley Gass Riley Gass
jpg Dave Kiffer Dave Kiffer

jpg Spencer Strassburg

Spencer Strassburg

jpg Joey Jean Tillison Joey Jean Tillson
jpg Lisa Scarborough

Lisa Scarborough

Voter Turnout

Borough: 27%
City: 25%

Ketchikan City Council - Two Year Term (One Seat Open)
Grant Echohawk
jpg Mark Flora Mark Flora
Candidate's Statement
jpg Mary Stephenson Mary Stephenson

Ketchikan Borough Election Results
Download Unofficial Canvas Election Results pdf 10/12/20
Download: Ketchikan Borough 10/06/20 Unofficial Results (PDF) 10/06/20
Absentee Ballots to count on October 12, 2020 = 513
Questioned Ballots to count October 12, 2020 = 156
Special Needs Ballots to count October 12, 2020 = 8

City of Ketchikan Election Results
Download: City of Ketchikan 10/06 Unofficial Canvas Results (PDF) 10/07/20
Download City of Ketchikan Unofficial Results pdf 10/07/20
Absentee Ballots to count on October 07, 2020 = 301
Questioned Ballots to count on October 07, 2020 = 93
Special Needs Ballots to count on October 07, 2020 - 5

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Southeast Alaska: Tlingit & Haida Hold Virtual 85th Annual Tribal Assembly - The Central Council of Tlingit and Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska’s (Tlingit & Haida) 85th Annual Tribal Assembly was called to order virtually via Zoom on October 1, 2020. Over 100 Delegates from Southeast Alaska, Anchorage, California, Washington and beyond gathered to legislate for and govern, conduct and manage the affairs and property of the Tribe.
In order to conduct business virtually and to assist in setting the policy of the Tribe during Tribal Assembly or related functions between sessions, Delegates adopted proposed amendments to the Standing Rules of Order.

“Even during a pandemic, it’s important that Tlingit & Haida continue to operate and demonstrate our governance,” shared President Richard (Chalyee Éesh) Peterson. “ While we may not have been able to gather in person, we have proven our resilience and adaptability to using technology available to carry on. Our Delegates came together and approved budgets, resolutions and elected our officials just as we’ve done for 85 years. ”
The Tribal Assembly was webcast live on Tlingit & Haida’s Facebook page and commenced with a moment of silence to honor the passing of tribal citizen David Leask who served many years as a Delegate, Executive Council member, chair of the Enrollment Committee and Parliamentarian for Tribal Assembly. This was followed by an introduction of the Tribal Host William E. Martin and Tribal Hostess Corrine Garza who were both chosen for the honorary positions for their many years of contributions and dedicated service to their community and the Tribe.
The theme for the one-day assembly was “Our People, Our Land, Our Purpose” and resonated in the 25 resolutions brought forth by Tlingit & Haida Community Councils and Delegates. A total of 25 resolutions were submitted by Delegates and Tlingit & Haida Community Councils addressing support for congressional legislation, transboundary mining and rivers, marine highway transportation funding issues, public health care systems and data, climate change, and other important matters – 13 resolutions were adopted under the consent calendar and 12 were deferred to the Executive Council for consideration at their next regularly scheduled meeting. - More...
Sunday PM - October 04, 2020

Ketchikan: AMHS to assist IFA with temporary ferry service between Ketchikan and Hollis; M/V Lituya sailings to begin October 8 Posted & Edited by MARY KAUFFMAN - The Alaska Marine Highway System (AMHS) has scheduled the M/V Lituya to provide temporary service between Ketchikan and Hollis on Prince of Wales (POW) Island. On September 30, the Inter-Island Ferry Authority's (IFA) M/V Stikin suffered a propulsion system failure, and the incident has left POW Island with limited options for travel and commerce. The IFA anticipates returning their vessel to service November 1.

The M/V Stikine was placed into inactive status until parts and technicians to make the necessary repairs can be secured. The M/V Prince of Wales is already inactive and awaiting repairs. The delay in repairs to the Prince of Wales is due to scheduling issues and the complexities of funding.

According to a news release from Ron Curtis IFA General Manager, the M/V Stikine would return to service on November 1st and the M/V Prince of Wales will return to service by the end of the year. - More...
Sunday PM - October 04, 2020

Southeast Alaska: Group of lawmakers request disaster declaration for Southeast fishermen for federal aid to offset pandemic-struck fishing season By MARY KAUFFMAN - Five members of the Alaska State Legislature addressed a letter to Governor Dunleavy requesting for a disaster declaration for all eligible species of salmon in the region.

The letter is signed by representative from various communities throughout Southeast Alaska. Representatives Jonathan Kreiss-Tomkins, Sara Hannan, Dan Ortiz, Andi Story, and Senator Jesse Kiehl, underscore in the letter the difficulties facing fishermen, including poor returns, drops in prices, and reduced economic opportunities caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

In the letter, the representatives state many of their constituents rely heavily on the commercial fisheries industry for their economic well-being. The purpose of the letter is to ask Governor Dunleavy to request a fisheries disaster determination from the US Secretary of Commerce for all eligible species of salmon in Southeast Alaska.

Although the 2020 fishing season has not yet concluded, the representatives wrote reports from the Southeast commercial fishing fleets indicate a dismal year for salmon returns in the region. There has also been a significant drop in the prices fishermen get from processors. This — paired with reduced economic opportunity caused by COVID-19 — has led many of our communities to request declarations of economic disaster from the state.

"Between the historically poor salmon returns and the COVID-19 related market crash, this fishing season, like so many things in the year of 2020, has been absolutely terrible," said  Representative Jonathan Kreiss-Tomkins  (D-Sitka). "I urge the Governor to declare a disaster after the season comes to a close so that those affected can receive federal aid in the most timely fashion possible."

However prices may not yet be so grim. This week Laine Welch reports in her column Fish Factor that Tradex is reporting that sockeye prices are “significantly higher than last year” and suggests that suppliers are stockpiling inventories in their freezers. Tradex predicts the same for wild chum salmon due to low catches from all producers. The same holds true for pink salmon, where big shortfalls from Russia are biting into the global supply.

For sockeye salmon, global supplier and market tracker Tradex reports that frozen fillets are in high demand and supplies are hard to source for all sizes. Primarily because of the Bristol Bay's 40.7 million salmon catch (nearly all sockeyes), with a catch this year topping 45 million statewide, Alaska is the leading producer of that popular commodity. - More...
Sunday PM - October 04, 2020

Fish Factor: Lower supplies of wild Pacific salmon pushing up prices By LAINE WELCH - Now that the 2020 pack of Alaska salmon has been caught and put up, stakeholders will get a better picture of how global prices may rise or fall.

Nearly 75% of the value of Alaska’s salmon exports is driven by sales between July and October. And right now, lower supplies of wild Pacific salmon by the major producers are pushing up prices as the bulk of those sales are made.

For sockeye salmon, global supplier and market tracker Tradex reports that frozen fillets are in high demand and supplies are hard to source for all sizes. With a catch this year topping 45 million, Alaska is the leading producer of that popular commodity.

“Luckily, sockeye harvests were once again abundant in Bristol Bay as fishermen caught nearly 200 million pounds. Although that's a bigger than average harvest for Bristol Bay, it's still down 9% from last year. With lower sockeye harvests in Russia and closures in Canada, we estimate the global sockeye harvest declined by 26% in 2020,” said Andy Wink, executive director of the Bristol Bay Regional Seafood Development Association speaking on the Tradex Three-Minute Market Report.

Tradex reports that sockeye prices are “significantly higher than last year” and suggests that suppliers are stockpiling inventories in their freezers.

“Our recommendation for sockeye buyers is similar to a few weeks ago, which is to secure your supply now. Sockeye prices are anticipated to make a good bull-run before moving into a bear-type market,” said correspondent Tasha Cadence.

Tradex predicts the same for wild chum salmon due to low catches from all producers.

“In speaking to our VP of Asia Operations, he advised they are anticipating that new season chum won’t be available until the end of September and that salmon will certainly be very short this year,” Cadence added. “Both from Russia and Alaska, and the estimated raw materials price will go up to $4,300 per metric ton - which translates to about $1.95 to $2.00/lb.”

And the same holds true for pink salmon, where big shortfalls from Russia are biting into the global supply.

Prices for pink salmon that are processed in China and distributed back to the U.S. and other countries have increased from $2,600 to $3,400 per metric ton - or from $1.20 to $1.55 per pound.

“Going back a few weeks it was reported that Russian boats did not even want to make commitments at the higher prices as they wanted pricing at even higher levels,” Cadence said.

A weakening dollar also means foreign customers can buy more U.S. salmon for less.

How the initial uptick in salmon commodity markets might play out in fishermen’s paychecks remains to be seen. Alaska processors typically post a base price as a place holder when the salmon season gets underway. Then, bonuses for fish that is chilled, bled or delivered are often sent to fishermen in the fall, and any profit sharing checks usually arrive the following spring.

“Retro-payments more than anything are a payment to appease the fleet and keep them from jumping to another processor,” said a longtime Bristol Bay fisherman. “There are many instances where a processor has paid their ‘retro or adjustment in the Spring, only to have to make another payment in early June to match competitors.  Price adjustments are a dark art and there is no set formula as it relates to the sale of the pack.” - More...
Sunday PM - October 04, 2020


Alaska: New Legislation Would Provide Greater Fiscal Stability for the University of Alaska. - U.S. Sens. Lisa Murkowski, Dan Sullivan, and Rep. Don Young, all R-Alaska, last week introduced new legislation, the University of Alaska Fiscal Foundation Act, in both the Senate and House of Representatives. The legislation is supported by Alaska Governor Mike Dunleavy, also R-Alaska, and would resolve the University of Alaska’s (University) unfulfilled land grant to help it generate revenues that support its students and operations. 

The University currently has one of the smallest land endowments - just 110,000 acres - of any applicable institution of higher education. While those lands help the University generate revenues, a complicated history of federal laws and an adverse court ruling have prevented the State of Alaska (State) from being able to directly convey additional lands to the University from its own entitlement—despite that being Congress’ clear intent for several decades.

The delegation’s new bill addresses these issues by allowing the University and State to jointly identify up to 500,000 acres for potential conveyance, which the Department of the Interior (DOI) would survey. The State and University would then work with DOI to transfer up to 360,000 acres in total to the University. Any land ultimately transferred to the University would be deducted from Alaska’s outstanding statehood lands entitlement, which still totals several million acres.

“As we navigate these unprecedented times, the University of Alaska will continue to play a critical role by providing quality educations to young Alaskans and future generations,” said Senator Murkowski, Chairman of the Energy and Natural Resources Committee. “This legislation will fulfill the University of Alaska’s land grant for the benefit of its students and help provide a permanent foundation to support higher education in Alaska. This is key to a healthy and vibrant future for our state, and I thank the Governor and the University for working with us to develop this consensus approach.”

“The University of Alaska, like so many other institutions in Alaska, has been hit hard by the pandemic, facing significant fiscal challenges as a result.” said Senator Sullivan. “Finally fulfilling the University’s promise as a land grant university with sufficient lands to achieve its mission will better enable the institution to support itself and continue to educate our state’s next generation of leaders. I’m glad to join Senator Murkowski and Congressman Young in introducing this legislation to break through decades-long hurdles that have prevented the University from accessing the land it needs to secure a strong future.” - More...
Sunday PM - October 04, 2020


Ketchikan: New Pediatrician Joins PeaceHealth Ketchikan Medical Center - PeaceHealth Ketchikan recently announced that Tim Horton, MD, has joined PeaceHealth Medical Group Pediatrics and is accepting new patients.

Dr. Tim, as he prefers to be called, has been a pediatrician for 25 years. He graduated from Johns Hopkins University and went to medical school at Columbia University and completed his residency at Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles.

“I feel like I’ve had an amazing career so far, practicing in California, and Georgia and experiencing medicine and care all over the world,” Dr. Tim said. “I feel lucky to be always able to keep caring for children and their families at the focus of my professional life.”

He most recently was a pediatrician and hospitalist at Meadows Regional Medical Center in Vidalia, Georgia. Dr. Tim has made medical mission trips to Zimbabwe, Kenya, Haiti, Mexico, and the Dominican Republic.

Dr. Tim got his first look at Southeast Alaska from a cruise ship in 2017. An avid outdoorsman, he was taken with the scenery and impressed with the people he met in Ketchikan. - More...
Sunday PM - October 04, 2020

Ketchikan: New Family Medicine Physician Joins PeaceHealth Ketchikan - PeaceHealth Medical Group Primary Care announced the addition of Charles Jose MD to their team of medical providers. Dr. Jose, a family medicine physician, began seeing patients in September.

Dr. Jose most recently was Chief Resident at Family Medicine Residency of Western Montana (University of Montana). When he completed his residency and considered his next career step, PeaceHealth Ketchikan was his first stop.

“I immediately decided on Ketchikan because I love the outdoors. I love hiking; I love fishing. I also wanted to practice in an area with a strong Filipino population in order to serve my culture and community,” said Dr. Jose who is fluent in both Tagalog and English.

While most of his patients so far have been Tagalog speakers, his practice isn’t limited to the Filipino community, and he is looking to expand his patient base. “I love pediatrics and adolescent care, so I hope I can expand my practice to include children and young adults,” he said.

Dr. Jose earned a Master of Public Health degree from Boston University School of Public Health, and his medical degree from the University of Nevada, Reno, School of Medicine. - More...
Sunday PM - October 04, 2020



Alaska: October is National Domestic Violence Action and Awareness Month - Each year Alaska highlights the importance of being aware of, and taking action against, the high rates of domestic violence in our state during the month of October, National Domestic Violence Action and Awareness Month (DVAAM).  This year awareness, and especially action, is important as the challenge of navigating life during a pandemic exacerbates both the impact and severity of domestic violence and increases the likelihood of victims being unable to easily access services.  Governor Mike Dunleavy, whose administration is actively working to reduce and end domestic violence, recognizes the severe impact and issued a Proclamation  making October DVAAM in Alaska.  

“All Alaskans deserve to be safe in their homes and communities. The current COVID-19 pandemic health crisis has led to further isolation and increased risks of harm for victims in all of Alaska’s communities and particularly in rural Alaska,” said Governor Mike Dunleavy. 

Dunleavy said, “In October of each year, we recognize the victims and survivors of domestic violence and remind them that they are not alone. Together we will foster a safer Alaska by providing resources in times of need, promoting healthy relationships, and sending a clear message that violence will not be tolerated.”

During the month of October, the Council on Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault (CDVSA), within the Alaska Department of Public Safety, is sponsoring a social media campaign to increase awareness of domestic violence in Alaska, educate Alaskans about the continuum of healthy, unhealthy, violent relations, and connect Alaskans to available resources.  Resources that provide information for victims, for families and for those wishing to become engaged in the work to end violence.  - More...
Sunday PM - October 04, 2020

Alaska: October is Fire Prevention Month; October 4-10, 2020 is National Fire Prevention Week - In the state of Alaska, fire is a serious public safety concern. As such, Governor Mike Dunleavy issued a proclamation  to recognize the October 2020 as Fire Prevention Month. National Fire Prevention Week begins October 4 and runs through October 10.

The national slogan for the 2020 Fire Prevention Week is “Serve Up Fire Safety in the Kitchen.” By following the advice of the slogan, we can heavily reduce the number of residential fires that plague this state. 

“The vast majority of the injuries and deaths experienced in Alaska due to fires were preventable and that is simply unacceptable.” said Virginia McMichael, Public Education Coordinator, Division of Fire and Life Safety. “It is imperative that Alaskans protect their homes and families by using simple fire prevention measures like supervising all of the cooking and being cautious of home heating equipment, and proper placement of ignitable material.” 

In 2019, there were 893 residential structure fires reported in Alaska, which resulted in 14 deaths, more than 44 civilian injuries, and 39 firefighter injuries. Property losses were estimated at over $50,411,728, and four civilian deaths from other fires.  - More...
Sunday PM - October 04, 2020


jpg Ben Edwards

FINANCIAL FOCUS: Lessons from Experienced Investors By Ben Edwards, AAMS® - Those who have lived a long time have done a lot, seen a lot – and can teach us a lot. And that’s certainly true when it comes to investing.

Consider some of the lessons you might learn from experienced investors:

• Regulate your emotions. In the investment world, there’s always something coming at us that could sound scary: political flashpoints, economic news, and even those once-in-a-generation occurrences, such as the COVID-19 pandemic. But older people may take these events in stride; in fact, baby boomers and members of the Silent Generation (born between 1925 and 1945) are coping better emotionally with the impacts of COVID-19 than younger age cohorts, according to the 2020 Edward Jones/Age Wave Four Pillars of the New Retirement study. And by keeping control of your emotions, you may be less likely to make moves such as selling quality investments with good fundamentals just because their prices have fallen in the midst of an overall market decline. - More...
Sunday PM - October 04, 2020

JEFF LUND: Terms of use - So, I know what social media is. It’s a bear. A poisonous snake. Lava slowly coating the earth. The closer I get, or the more I ignore its purpose, the more likely I am to be harmed. Similarly, if I turn my back and pretend there is no danger, I’m done. 

This recent clarity came after watching The Social Dilemma, a documentary on Netflix in which the engineers who designed parts, or helped run some of the leading social media and search platforms, reveal what they’ve done. Not on purpose, but humans are in the business of weapon-izing even the most well-intended inventions and the Internet is no exception. 

The harm isn’t just feeling sad or inadequate (the suicide increase among 10 to 14-year-old girls is sickening) or me using a product, it’s about turning me and my data into the product, propagandists turning a manipulated me into a delivered vote. As computer scientist Jaron Lanier says in the documentary, it’s the rewiring of my system and small, imperceptible changes in my actions that can be predicted and then monetized. - More...
Sunday PM - October 04, 2020

JOE GUZZARDI: ONE IMPORTANT ISSUE OVERLOOKED DURING THE FIRST DEBATE - After the first presidential debate mercifully ended, Fox News analyst and moderator Chris Wallace called the free-for-all “interesting.” A better word is ugly.

Challenger Joe Biden sunk to calling President Trump names: “liar,” “racist,” “clown” and resorted to an unprecedented presidential political insult, “Will you shut up, man.” As for Trump, in some viewers’ opinions, he came off as unpresidential. Add Wallace’s scolding, hectoring performance into the mix, and the result is three losers. The hour and a half verbal brawl made a good case for canceling future debates which would end once and for all the undignified circus-like atmosphere that benefits no one, least of all voters.

If Trump is indeed trailing in the polls, assuming surveys taken by the never-Trump ABC and Washington Post are credible, then he needs to ratchet up his game. One of the top priorities among American voters is jobs, and to make his case Trump should revert to the issue that won him the White House in 2016: immigration and its detrimental effect on U.S. employment. - More...
Sunday PM - October 04, 2020


MICHAEL SHANNON: WHAT IF ANTIFA SPONSORED A PRESIDENTIAL DEBATE? - I’ve got good news for conservatives and independents who watched last Tuesday’s first presidential debate. If you had ‘Witness a Train Wreck’ on your bucket list, feel free to check that one off.

The encounter was a disaster for Trump supporters. When all viewers can recall from a debate is the bickering and not a single sound bite, then the strategy was a failure.

And forget about fighting over earpieces. Tuesday was the first debate in history where allowing candidates to use a teleprompter would have been an improvement. In extemporaneous situations Trump has always been Wham-bam-thank-you-ma’am when it comes to staying on message. One quick mention and he’s done. - More...
Sunday PM - October 04, 2020

jpg Political Cartoon: Amy Coney Barrett

Political Cartoon: Amy Coney Barrett
By Rick McKee ©2020, Counterpoint
Distributed to paid subscribers for publication by Cagle Cartoons, Inc.


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jpg Opinion

Vote EchoHawk for City Council By Peter Stanton - I am pleased to see how many candidates are running in Ketchikan’s upcoming municipal elections on October 6th, and I am relieved there is healthy competition for every open seat on the Borough Assembly and City Council. Today I am writing to express my enthusiastic support for one City Council candidate in particular - Grant EchoHawk. 

It shouldn’t be too surprising or controversial to say that many people in Ketchikan feel disconnected and even alienated from the decisions that our City Council makes. We need to elect councilmembers who can repair that disconnect as quickly and effectively as possible. Grant EchoHawk’s years of experience in teambuilding, business leadership, and volunteer work clearly demonstrate that he has the skills to foster dialogue and involve more of our community in local government. It’s a special feeling when you feel truly listened to, and that’s the feeling I get when I talk to Grant.  - More...
Sunday PM - October 04, 2020

jpg Opinion

Southeast Conference Annual Meeting 2020 By Rep. Dan Ortiz - Last week, I had the opportunity to attend the online Southeast Conference Annual Meeting. The organization has a long history of advocating for our region’s people and economy. Did you know that it originally started as a group to promote the creation of a transportation system in Southeast, which went on to become the Alaska Marine Highway System? Of course, since then, it has grown to include all industries pertinent to Southeast, such as mining, timber, tourism, and fishing and mariculture.

Overall, the economic numbers for Southeast Alaska are a bit bleak. Ketchikan, Wrangell, and Metlakatla all had fewer jobs in 2019 than in 2018, and the 2020 numbers are expected to be even less because of COVID.

This drop is primarily from the loss of state jobs (because of a continuously cut state budget) and state jobs being transferred to other places. One example of ‘capitol creep’ is the proposed Public Safety Dispatch Center; Ketchikan currently houses an emergency dispatch center that serves Southeast, but the Department of Public Safety is attempting to consolidate it to an Anchorage-area center. - More...
Sunday PM - October 04, 2020

jpg Opinion

2020 Southeast Alaska Conference By Austin Otos - I had the opportunity to participate in the first virtual Southeast Conference via Zoom. I was able to attend committees on: energy, timber, mariculture, and the University of Alaska Southeast. Also in the line up, a report from U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski on federal legislation for the new congressional year and a panel discussion comprised of Southeast state legislators. The first committee I attended was on energy in Southeast and the work that is being done in diversifying energy generation and connecting southeast through electric grids like the Swan-Tyee intertie system. I found it pertinent to attend this session due to Ketchikan’s past energy issues with long draught periods during the summer months and the impacts that has on our hydroelectric system. The committee focused on the strengths of Southeast’s energy: abundance of hydropower, biomass capabilities, and new innovation technology such as tidal or wind. Some of the barriers to energy are: high infrastructure costs, small loads/demands due to population, and lack of electric grids between communities. It’s important for Southeast to upgrade its power grids in order to meet future demands of electric cars, transition from diesel to electric home heating, and battery storage technology.

When talking about economic diversification we often overlook our reliance on the ocean. Fisheries, particularly mariculture, have a huge potential of becoming a viable industry in Southeast because of our vast coastlines and clean water. Since the KGB has an investment in the mariculture industry via Oceans Alaska, the partnership between local government supporting and jump-starting the industry is already there. Innovative businesses like Sea Grove Kelp/Premium Aquatics and Hump Island Oysters are producing value-added products that are being exported out of the region to other areas. The overall development plan ushered in by the Walker Administration called for $100 million industry in 20 years. Government partnership can help this industry by being a marketing vessel to build upon our trade relations with other countries that consume a large amount of our seafood. - More...
Sunday PM - October 04, 2020

jpg Opinion

Re: THE CLUELESS CANDIDACY OF LESLIE BECKER By Hannah Ramiskey - During my forty-four years in Ketchikan I have read, or partially read, many opinion letters from Dave Hanger. Frequently he is mad because Alaska doesn’t receive enough money from oil companies.

However, last week he wrote a diatribe on the “Clueless Leslie Becker”. The piece was a new low for Mr. Hanger, especially his firm opinion that she is dumb and a right- wing religious kook. It’s a ridiculous observation by a man who has never spoken with Mrs. Becker, let alone met her in person.

In the four years I have known Leslie Becker I have never seen her with coiled snakes, goat sacrifices, nor eye of newt. She does say she’s a Christian Conservative Republican, which after your rant at the Borough Assembly meeting we both attended, I have come to think that maybe it’s just Christians in general who annoy the hell out of you. - More...
Sunday PM - October 04, 2020

jpg Opinion

My Support for Ballot Measure 1 The Fair Share Act By Senator Bill Wielechowski - In a past newsletter I told you about my full support of Ballot Measure 1, the Fair Share Act. I want to reinforce now how important passing Ballot Measure 1 is  to the future of Alaska.  
Today the Legislature's nonpartisan Finance Director testified in a legislative hearing that the state's current budget will be unsustainable beginning in just the next fiscal year. The state is out of savings to dip into, and the current budget is already one by which Alaskans have seen and experienced drastic cuts in the last few years. We felt deep cuts to state programs and services we need and value, such as funding for preschool and K-12 education, public safety, the University, the Alaska Marine Highway System, Medicaid, maintenance, and capital projects--and of course, your PFD, which was only $992 this year, but under the statutory formula should have been about $3,000. Even at these reduced funding levels, the state will see a $903 million deficit next year.  
The Legislative Finance Director warned that in light of these dire fiscal circumstances, the Legislature must consider revenue measures.
Most of you know how staunchly I defend your right to your PFD. Without new revenue, I'm afraid that when the Legislature convenes to address next year's budget, the PFD will be the first thing to go completely. I will fight hard to prevent that but many in the Legislature do not agree with my views on preserving the PFD. Beyond the PFD, the Legislature would still have to consider additional dramatic cuts to state programs, probably eliminating wholesale many of them. - More...
Sunday PM - October 04, 2020

jpg Opinion

Upcoming Presidential Election By A.M. Johnson - Some things are too important to let slide. The reputation, statements, actions and such which reflect on the character of the man need be reported or repeated so that history is known and the future based on that history can be analyzed prior to deciding if that reputation deserves favorable action. 

I have I guess, plagiarized the following and confess to so doing. The content in my opinion, should be exposed for public consumption as they consider who they will support in the coming national election. - More...
Sunday PM - October 04, 2020

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