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SitNews - Stories In The News - Ketchikan, Alaska
November 05, 2012

Buffelhead Ducks
The Bufflehead is a small sea duck. Adult males are striking black and white, with iridescent green and purple heads with a large white patch behind the eye. Females are grey-toned with a smaller white patch behind the eye and a light underside. The name Bufflehead is a combination of buffalo and head, referring to the oddly bulbous head shape of the species which is most noticeable when the male puffs out the feathers on the head, thus greatly increasing the apparent size of the head.
Front Page Photograph by Susan Hoyt ©2012
(Please respect the rights of photographers, never republish or copy
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Ketchikan: Coast Guard rescues two men and dog near Ketchikan - During Sunday's windstorm, the Coast Guard rescued two men and their dog from two 39-foot vessels lashed together in Gem Cove 23 miles east of Ketchikan.

Coast Guard rescues two men and dog near Ketchikan

25-foot Response Boat-Small heading from the Coast Guard base to Gem Cove. This photo was taken from Rotary Beach.
Photo by Cindy Balzer

The two men were taken to Herring Bay and transferred safely to emergency medical services by a Station Ketchikan 25-foot Response Boat-Small crew after one of the men reportedly began exhibiting heart attack symptoms.

The Coast Guard was initially notified of the case by the Canadian command center in Prince Rupert, British Columbia. The men aboard the vessels had reported that they were taking on water in Gem Cove.

The Coast Guard launched a Station Ketchikan 47-foot Motor Life Boat to respond but the crew was unable to come alongside due to on-scene conditions and shallow water depth. The Station Ketchikan Response Boat-Small (RBS) crew was sent to assist.

The Response Boat-Small (RBS) crew was able to get alongside the vessels and transfer the two people and their dog to safety. - More...
Monday PM - November 05, 2012

Ketchikan: Heroin arrests made - Saturday, Officers of the Ketchikan Police Department with the assistance of the United States Postal Inspection Service intercepted a package containing 2.25 ounces of Heroin with an estimated street value of $30,000. The package was for 21 year-old Bertram W. Nathan.

A search warrant was conducted at Nathan's Woodland Avenue residence in Ketchikan.  During the search of the residence contact with a 17 year-old female was made along with Nathan.  Found inside of the residence was drug paraphernalia, a .40 caliber handgun with multiple loaded magazines, and a switchblade.  Nathan was contacted by police within feet of his handgun.

Nathan was charged with Misconduct Involving A Controlled Substance In The Second Degree (Possession of Heroin with intent to distribute), Misconduct Involving a Controlled Substance In The Fourth Degree (Maintaining a dwelling for the purposes of keeping and distributing controlled substances), Misconduct Involving Weapons In the Second Degree (Possessing a firearm during the commission of a felony drug offense), and Misconduct Involving a Controlled Substance In the Fifth Degree (possession of a switchblade).  Nathan was held on $5,000.00 bail.

During another drug investigation in Ketchikan that took place Sunday morning...- More...
Monday PM - November 05, 2012

Alaska: German Shipping Companies Convicted In Alaska And Texas For Illegal Dumping of Oil at Sea - U.S. Attorney Karen L. Loeffler said that two German shipping companies pled guilty Friday to obstructing justice and concealing the illegal dumping of oil at sea. The Defendants pled guilty in federal court to criminal charges filed in both Alaska and Texas charging that crew members of the cargo vessel M/V Susan K intentionally dumped oily waste at sea and then took steps to conceal it from the United States Coast Guard. These cases were procedurally handled in a single court proceeding early today in Texas.

Nimmrich & Prahm Bereederung and Nimmrich & Prahm Reedrei, the operators and owners of the commercial cargo vessel M/V Susan K, will pay a $1.2 million dollar criminal penalty, $200,000 of which will go to the National Marine Sanctuaries Fund as a community service payment. As a condition of probation, all vessels owned or operated by the defendants will be prohibited from entering U.S. ports or waters for five years.

Federal and international law requires that cargo vessels like the M/V Susan K dispose of oily bilge waste water by using an Oil Water Separator (OWS) or disposing of the waste at facilities located on shore. The law also requires that the crew record the disposal of oily waste water in an oil record book that is presented to the Coast Guard during port inspections. - More...
Monday PM - November 05, 2012

Alaska: Major Arctic Ocean climate change symposium planned - Sea Ice covering the Arctic Ocean melted away to a record low in 2012, according to the National Snow and Ice Data Center.

The steady loss of arctic sea ice in recent decades is perhaps the most obvious sign of a warming planet. As of mid-September, Arctic Ocean sea ice covered just 1.32 million square miles of ocean - less than half the 1979-to-date average, when satellite measurements began.

Far less obvious is how individual marine species - from arctic cod that live just below and sometimes within the sea ice, to seals, whales, polar bears and ultimately humans - will respond to the loss of sea ice and other consequences of a warmer Arctic. - More...
Monday PM - November 05, 2012

Alaska Science: Snow researcher finds his Arctic By NED ROZELL - Imagine planning a dream journey across a landscape you have seen for years, if only in your mind’s eye. You get to choose the means of transportation, the never-before-done route, and your travel companions. These friends are invited because they can remove and replace a snowmachine clutch, they share your excitement at seeing what’s beyond the next river bend, and they make you laugh in the cook tent at dinnertime.

Snow researcher finds his Arctic

Matthew Sturm’s partners on a 2007 snowmachine traverse head toward Daring Lake in Canada’s Northwest Territories.
Photo by M. Sturm

After 45 brilliant and bleak days, you complete a difficult journey that brings you closer to the long-dead adventurers you have read about and admired. And, because of your stellar reputation and the smarts you have gathered in three decades of work in the far north, you got paid to do it.

Matthew Sturm accomplished a lot in a 2,500-mile snowmachine journey from Fairbanks to Hudson Bay in 2007, when he was 54. The University of Alaska Press this year published the snow scientist’s book about the journey, “Finding the Arctic.”

In the book, Sturm reveals himself as kindred soul to those who long ago tramped across the north looking for adventure in one of the few regions on Earth less populated now than it was a century ago. - More...
Monday PM - November 05, 2012


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letter In the future... By Dave Kiffer - I don't usually respond to letters about my opinion pieces because I feel that I have already had my say and that any responses to it are just part of the process and a "good thing" even if they call me a complete buckbrained eegit. - More...
Monday PM - November 06, 2012

letter Issue of abortion By Rob Holston - In response to Eric Muench, I feel that the issue of abortion is all too often confined to a description of a few "religious" faiths forcing their antiquated beliefs upon the rest of us. This is unfortunate in that the truth of the matter has to do with the destruction of a fetus. It is ironic that the political party that strives to diminish Big Government is "pro-life", yet ALL political parties agree that government's largest responsibility is to protect the people of the nation. So the debate SHOULD focus on when does a fetus become that person who deserves protection? - More...
Monday PM - November 06, 2012

letter Matt Olsen for State House Rep. District 33 By Dawn Rauwolf - I will be voting for Matt Olsen on Tuesday, Nov. 6 to be our representative for State House District 33. - More...
Monday PM - November 06, 2012

letter CHALLENGE DAY By Diane Gubatayao - Challenge Day is approaching and we are seeking adult volunteers who are willing to dedicate a day to supporting our students. There are three separate sessions:  Tuesday, November 13th and Wednesday, November 14th at Kayhi and Thursday, November 15th at Schoenbar. - More...
Friday PM - November 02, 2012

letter Why I cannot support the Republicans By Eric Muench - The Obama administration's approach to resource development in Alaska is harmful to the State and to the nation. The Outside urban liberal environmentalist agenda is driving Forest Service and Interior Department policies. But despite my wish to see a change in direction of those agencies, there are some more fundamental threats to us all than economic issues. Individual and religious freedom is being threatened and that makes it impossible for me to support Republicans in this election. - More...
Friday PM - November 02, 2012

letter Support Kreiss-Tomkins By Adrian LeCornu - My name is Adrian LeCornu and I have served my community for over 30 years, and have watched state legislators come and go, and once in a while they even show up in Hydaburg. - More...
Friday PM - November 02, 2012

letter Jonathan Kreiss-Tomkins For Alaska House District 34 By Gavin Hudson - Every once in a while the political landscape shifts, providing rural people an opportunity to assert ourselves in our government. We can see this unfolding in the newly redrawn District 34, which includes Metlakatla, Craig, Klawock, Hydaburg, Kasaan, Kake, Hoonah, Angoon, Pelican, Klukwan, Elfin Cove, Port Alexander, Haines, and Sitka. - More...
Friday PM - November 02, 2012

letter House District 33 Race By Kathleen Wiechelman - I'll be voting for Matt Olsen in the upcoming election. Matt is honest, ethical, and I've watched Matt at enough Ketchikan City Council and School Board meetings to know that he asks a lot of thoughtful questions before he makes decisions on issues. He does his research and keeps himself well-informed. - More...
Friday PM - November 02, 2012

letter RE: Surviving the great tsunami By Paul Crowl - I rarely choose to take to a public forum to step in-between two opposing viewpoints, the one represented by Dave Kiffer's article "...surviving the great tsunami", and the other,  Brad Maushart's response of Oct. 30. But, I find myself appreciative of both perspectives. Though, I have to say that on the one hand, I find elements of Dave's original article a bit snarky, and elements of Brad's response a bit defensive.  - More...
Friday PM - November 02, 2012  

letter RE: We all Survived the Tsunami 2012 By Annie Fawcett - In my opinion it might be a wise idea for Mr. Kiffer to travel to Lituya Bay before down playing a Tsunami alert, to see how a large wave can give a haircut to a mountain. - More...
Friday PM - November 02, 2012

letter FairTax is different from the income tax By Glen E. Terrell - The income tax and the Internal Revenue Service have been “the law of the land” throughout the life of every American-born citizen working today.  We, as Americans, haven’t lived under any other system.  But, there is a much better way ­ it’s called the FairTax Act. - More...
Friday PM - November 02, 2012

letter RE: "We all survived the GREAT TSUNAMI ALERT OF 2012!" By Brad Maushart - In response to Dave Kiffer's column... weather, seismology, sports betting and many other things in this world are not an exact science. A variable of 1 degree, to one foot to one missed tackle can mean the difference between rain or snow, devastating tsunami or one inch wave or even a big payout or disappointment. If they were exact sciences, anyone could succeed at those jobs and I would most likely be replaced by a better speaker and definitely by someone who looks better. - More...
Tuesday PM - October 30, 2012

letter Critics of Timber Task Force Recommendations By Owen Graham - Recent critics of the Governor’s Timber Task Force recommendations claim that the establishment of a State Forest from portions of the Tongass would remove federal protections for salmon streams and would hurt fishermen, hunters, tourism operators and others. Those criticisms are unfounded. Both State and Federal land are required to maintain a minimum of a 100-foot salmon stream buffer and the State Forest Practices Act was designed specifically to protect salmon habitat. The Forest Service and the State Division of Forestry have both done a good job of managing timber harvesting without harming stream habitat. In fact, the salmon returns in Southern Southeast Alaska have doubled over the last 50 years, even in the most heavily logged watersheds. - More...
Tuesday PM - October 30, 2012

letter Albert Kookesh for Senate, District Q By Richard J. Peterson - I write this letter in support of Senator Albert Kookesh and his bid for the newly combined District Q. I have known Senator Kookesh for many years and have worked closely with him in my prior role as Mayor of Kasaan, now Council Member, and currently as Tribal President for the Organized Village of Kasaan and lastly as the President of the Southeast Island School District. It is not in any of these capacities that I endorse Senator Kookesh, however it is with these experiences that I draw upon to gauge the effectiveness, dedication, and determination of which Senator Kookesh has served his constituents. - More...
Tuesday PM - October 30, 2012

letter Matt Olsen for State Rep. District 33 By Mike Wisnewski - I'm glad Matt Olsen is running for state representative from our area. I've known Matt since he was a pre-schooler and I taught him in school here. He genuinely likes people, listens to people, and hears what they say. - More...
Tuesday PM - October 30, 2012

letter Voting No On Ballot Measure 1: The Constitution Shouldn't Be Messed With By Les Gara - How thrilled are you about the prospects that extremists would re-write our Constitution? I don’t know about you, but that would be, well, pretty schmucky.

Ballot Measure 1 shows up every 10 years to ask if you want a “Constitutional Convention” to re-write our State Constitution. This week I had dinner with a state Founding Father, Vic Fischer, who helped write the constitution. He and his Convention peer, Republican Jack Coghill, think letting people into the Constitution to push their pet peeves is a bad idea, especially in times when extremists on either side have pet peeves they want in the Constitution. The Constitution should be a regal document, not one with extremist ideas in it. - More...
Tuesday PM - October 30, 2012

letter Obama’s Failed Economic Policies By Donald A. Moskowitz - More people gave up looking for work in September causing the U. S. unemployment rate to dip to 7.8%.  The unemployment rate has hovered over 8% during Obama’s entire term up until last month.  The President promised a 5.6% unemployment rate by this time in his administration. - More...
Tuesday PM - October 30, 2012

letter Oil tax issue: Oil companies want more money By Matt Olsen - Representative Les Gara's October 19, 2012 opinion piece in the Ketchikan Daily News summed up the oil tax issue well; the oil companies want more money. $2 billion more. For a company like Conoco-Phillips, this would be in addition to the more than $7.5 billion profit they made from Alaska's oil just last year. Is this right? I don't believe so. - More...
Tuesday PM - October 30, 2012

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