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SitNews - Stories In The News - Ketchikan, Alaska
November 28, 2012

Front Page Photograph by JIM LEWIS

Horned Lark
This Horned Lark was photographed around the North Point Higgins School area recently while it was eating grubs in the grass. This is a uncommon bird for the Ketchikan area and was most likely refueling before continuing on its migration south.
Front Page Photograph by JIM LEWIS ©2012
(Please respect the rights of photographers, never republish or copy
without permission and/or payment of required fees.)

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Alaska: Comprehensive Salmon Research Initiative Proposed by Governor; Supports Sustainability of Alaska Fisheries – Governor Sean Parnell announced Tuesday that his Fiscal Year 2014 budget will contain $10 million for the first component of a five-year, $30 million comprehensive Chinook Salmon Research Initiative. The research initiative will increase Alaska’s understanding of factors affecting the abundance of Chinook salmon stocks statewide. It will develop strategies to enhance viability and increase returns, using improved information from 12 indicator river systems from Southeast Alaska to the Arctic. The $10 million will complement existing funds in the Alaska Department of Fish and Game’s operating budget. The department currently spends approximately $14.6 million annually for Chinook salmon-related research and management.

The governor’s fisheries initiative resulted from work undertaken by a team of scientists assembled this past summer by the Department of Fish and Game to develop a comprehensive research plan to help the state better understand Chinook salmon abundance and productivity. The draft research plan was presented and publicly discussed at a two-day Chinook salmon symposium in Anchorage in October. The symposium drew more than 400 scientists, fishermen and women, members of the public, and government representatives.

“The high turnout at the symposium indicates the importance Alaskans place on healthy Chinook salmon resources,” Governor Parnell said. “The quality of the dialogue between scientists and the public was a critical step in developing a robust research plan that reflects both the most current scientific knowledge and the priorities of the people of Alaska.”

United States Senator Lisa Murkowski praised Governor Sean Parnell for the 5 year/$30 million Chinook Salmon Research Initiative he unveiled in Kenai yesterday. - More...
Wednesday PM - November 28, 2012

Ketchikan: Clam Cove Loses Electric Power - A passing tugboat and barge may have cut the undersea cable between Pennock Island and Gravina Island yesterday causing approximately 20 customers in Clam Cove on Gravina to lose power.

According to a news release from the City of Ketchikan, divers along with Ketchikan Public Utilities line crews will work to determine the cause of the electrical outage and repair the outage. The power outage that began Tuesday afternoon at 4:45 affected some Pennock Island and Gravina Island customers. KPU had divers and the line crew working Wednesday morning to confirm and fix any damage to the cable. - More...
Wednesday PM - November 28, 2012

Alaska: Study Tracks Pacific Walrus, Observes Effects of Arctic Sea Ice Loss on Behavior - Sparse summer sea ice in the Arctic over the past five years has caused behavioral changes in Pacific walruses according to research published by U.S. Geological Survey and Russian scientists. The effects on the walrus population are unknown.

Study Tracks Pacific Walrus, Observes Effects of Arctic Sea Ice Loss on Behavior

Adult female walruses on ice floe with young.
Location: US waters of the Eastern Chukchi Sea, AK, USA -- Date Taken: 17 July 2012
Photographer: S.A. Sonsthagen , USGS

"The loss of sea ice is the 'why' for the change in walrus behavior; the tracking data tells us the 'where' in terms of their new forage patterns," said USGS Director Marcia McNutt. "What awaits to be seen is 'how much will it matter?'"

Using a simple darting system, scientists attached radio-tracking tags to 251 walruses in the Chukchi Sea. The tags transmitted the animals’ whereabouts and whether they were in the water and feeding. Using the tagging data gathered from 2008-2011, scientists created detailed maps of the walruses’ seasonal movements and feeding patterns relative to the location and amount of sea ice.

The study found that due to earlier melting of the ice in the summer, walruses arrived earlier to their northern feeding grounds on the broad continental shelf of the Chukchi Sea. When the sea ice over the continental shelf melted completely in the fall, they "hauled out" onshore in large aggregations and foraged for food closer to shore. Hauling out refers to the behavior associated with seals and walruses of temporarily leaving the water for sites on land or ice.

The specific effects of these behavioral changes are not yet understood; however, it is known that while onshore, young walruses are susceptible to mortality from trampling. Additionally, hauling out onshore and using nearshore feeding areas may require more energy. - More...
Wednesday PM - November 28, 2012

Ketchikan: An Evening of Jazz, Rock and Blues; The Sam Pitcher Memorial Scholarship Concert - The Windjammers, Soundwaves and Kayhi Jazz Band will present a jazz, rock and blues concert in the Kayhi Auditorium on Tuesday, December 4th at 7:00 p.m. This concert raises funds to help Sam Pitcher Scholarship winners attend summer music and arts camps. Thirty-nine music students have received this scholarship since 2004. Donations for the scholarship fund will be accepted at the door.

The Kayhi Jazz Band, directed by Deidra Nuss will open with "Blue Mambo" followed by "Hello, Dolly" from the Broadway musical first produced in 1964. "Blackbird" by the famous duo Lennon and McCartney was first recorded by the Beatles and produced by George Martin in 1968. "Count Bubba's Revenge", by contemporary composer, Gordon Goodwin is a swing-shuffle arranged by Ralph Ford.

The twenty-seven member Soundwaves Jazz Ensemble directed by Roy McPherson will start their set with "That's How We Roll" by Gordon Goodwin. Amber Junker will be featured on trombone in "Tomorrow" from the Broadway musical "Annie". This tune is one of the most popular songs from the musical, which opened in 1977. Mark Taylor has arranged "Hallelujah I Love Her So" by Ray Charles, featuring the trumpet section on 'plunger' mutes. "Take Five" made famous by the Dave Brubeck Quartet on their 1959 album, "Time Out", is composed by alto saxophonist, Paul Desmond. "Walk The Dinosaur" by Randy Jacobs was first recorded by the band "Was (Not Was)" in 1987, and included on the 1989 soundtrack of the movie "The Dream Team", and again in the 1994 "Flintstones" film. - More...
Wednesday PM - November 28, 2012

Ketchikan: Ketchikan Community Concert Band Festive Holiday Concert - The 44-member Ketchikan Community Concert Band conducted by Roy McPherson, will perform on Sunday, December 9 at 3:00 p.m. in the Kayhi Auditorium. The band was formed in 2002, and the members are all local musicians.

Michael Valenti's "Carolina Seasons" follows "Alaska's Flag", which is played at every concert to honor our great state. "Tonadillas Suite" by Enrique Granados consists of three short movements representing stories of men and women of Madrid. "Let the Amen Sound" was commissioned by the Northshore Concert Band in Illinois, one of the oldest and most highly-respected community bands in this country. It will be recognizable to most, as the work is based on the chorale "Praise to the Lord". Gary Parks has arranged "Sing We Now of Christmas", "God Rest You Merry Gentlemen", "The Holly and the Ivy" and "Deck the Halls" into a medley entitled "Yuletide Tapestry".

The KCCB woodwind section will be featured in the cradle song entitled "Berceuse", a gentle lullaby. Clifton Williams' composition "Killian", a concert march, was written for the Killian High School Band in Miami, in 1968. - More...
Wednesday PM - November 28, 2012


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Questions, please contact the editor at or call 617-9696
Sitnews reserves the right to edit.

letter The answer is NO! By Rodney Dial - In the news on November 26th, our Ketchikan City Manager Karl Amylon announced yet another large tax increase for the city. Apparently the property tax increase last year wasn't enough, or the shell game the City Council did when they made KPU the funding source for the non-profits, transferring hundreds of thousands of dollars in expenditures to our utility. - More...
Wednesday PM - November 28, 2012

letter SAYING SO DOESN’T MAKE IT SO By Rebecca Knight - The Tonka Timber Sale Record of Decision, signed in March 2012, culminated a multi-million dollar, three-year planning effort on Lindenberg Peninsula, just a short skiff ride from Petersburg. The protected waters of Wrangell Narrows allow safe access for local subsistence deer hunters during our notorious fall weather. Regionwide, one of the greatest threats to deer hunters is from boating accidents. - More...
Wednesday PM - November 28, 2012

letter RE: Dumping By Laura Plenert - Also, be considerate of other areas - like the "end" of the road, or the parking area available at the bottom of the Calanna Lake trail. It is disgusting to see people's trash just thrown in a public area. - More...
Monday PM - November 26, 2012

letter GAC pool By Amber Williams-Baldwin All last year swimming twice a week I had to sometimes wait 30 minutes for a " family room/ handicap room" . I am very happy that there're no stairs (except for the slides). If last year having two family rooms-handicap rooms wasn't enough, why would we only put in two again? Would anyone want to take their child out of a warm bath & let them wait 5,10,15-30 minutes to dry off? No? Then why didn't we put in several small just family rooms separate from handicap rooms? I think that was a HUGE mistake to both parties. - More...
Monday PM - November 26, 2012

letter Abortion, rights and choice By Marie Zellmer - I have been reading a lot about the abortion issue on Sitnews lately and I felt that I should add a little of what I know, personally. I will admit publicly that I have had two abortion procedures. Why? Is it because I don't like children? I can't afford to raise one, or have the guts to give it up for adoption? Or, because I am selfish and I don't want to have the responsibility of another life? The answer is no to all of these questions. - More...
Monday PM - November 26, 2012

letter RE: Fix It By Laura Plenert - Mr. Garcia, try talking to the store manager. I'm sure he would be able to help you. Bottom line, you cannot pay the lowest price and expect the highest quality. - More...
Monday PM - November 26, 2012

letter There once was a girl who gave up By Jordan Flory - On September 13, 1995, that girl was born, bright eyed and innocent to the ways of the world. All was good. As she grew up she learned about the hardships of life. Not only did these hardships cause her to become numb and distant, she also felt that there was no way out. That no one understood. That NO ONE could help. Her heart felt cold and empty. Somehow, it didn’t matter how many friends she had. It didn’t matter that she had a loving supportive family waiting at home. She knew there were people to talk to, but she didn’t know that there were people who understood. Giving up on living was the only possible fix she could see. - More...
Friday PM - November 23, 2012

letter Dumping items over the 3rd Ave. bypass By Vanessa Bruns - I ask that the residents of Ketchikan be more thoughtful and respectful when they are wanting to dispose unwanted items. The 3rd Avenue Bypass is not a dumping ground. There have been many items thrown over the 3rd Avenue railing ranging from bicycles, household garbage, cans, bottles, insulation, animal remains from hunting or fishing trips, small appliances, and scrap wood to name a few. What individuals may not realize, there are houses below the Bypass. - More...
Friday PM - November 23, 2012

letter Unwanted Pregnancies By Chris Elliott - My apologies to Mr. Jarvi. When he asked Mr. Holston to "convince the males...not to start the problem...", I thought he was talking about males taking responsibility for birth control. In response to Ms. Irizarry’s comments, I say (sans sarcasm): While conceiving is a 50-50 proposition, in the case of an unwanted pregnancy, it is almost always the female who shoulders the responsibility for the child. - More...
Friday PM - November 23, 2012

letter Abortion By Rob Holston - Sorry Paul, I don't see the comparison of Roe V Wade with crossing Ketchikan Creek. I do see several valid comparisons between Roe V Wade being the "law of the land" and other "Laws of the Land" observed as pathetic reminders of our historical past & present. Here are a few: women are property; only property owners can vote; slaves can be purchased, held, sold or killed; natives can be killed or put on reservations; Jews can be killed (by the millions); pre-born children can be killed (by the 10's of millions). - More...
Friday PM - November 23, 2012

letter Fix-It By Joey Garcia - Perhaps it is high time for me to reconcile my own with David Boone's opinion of "Fix It Right". It is a very sad note that in the electronics department of Ketchikan's Walmart, sans [sic] the smile of the employees to help out a customer. What it missed along this line is the knowledge of assigned people in their electronics IT department area. - More...
Friday PM - November 23, 2012

letter The old swimming hole By A.M.(Al) Johnson - Back in the days of yore, prior to 'Indoor Swimming', a young lad grew up living on the south side of Ketchikan in the area of "Buggy Beach" a tidal pool, now referred to as "Rotary Beach'. For the first toddling years of living near this location, mother would take me wading, allowing me to chase beach crab, throw rocks and enjoy the feel of water. As I grew, the time to learn to swim was nearing and one day, while treading water behind a floating log, I slipped off in water at deep end of the tidal pool. Not knowing how to swim, and near the third time down, a local Boy Scout, Harry Johannsen saved my live. - More...
Tuesday AM - November 20, 2012

letter Re: Open letter to the Ketchikan Borough Manager By Agnes Moran - Thank you for voicing you concerns about the Gateway Aquatic Center (GAC). The issues you raise have been previously identified by GAC staff and they are actively working with the contractor to resolve them. - More...
Tuesday AM - November 20, 2012

letter Reproduction & Responsibilities By Shari Irizarry - With all due respect and without expressing any opinion on abortion per se, I thought condoms, and "whatever else is available to men" were the answer to unwanted pregnancies. If you can't be bothered to use contraception, maybe you should consider the cost of child support for the next 18 years. Perhaps that would stick in your mind and make you a little more careful. - More...
Tuesday AM - November 20, 2012

letter Once again my point... By Paul Jarvi - I think Ms Elliott missed the point of my letter. Contraception is legal and the law of the land. Mr. Holston seems not to understand this point. - More...
Tuesday PM - November 20, 2012

letter Israel Will Strike Iran By Donald A. Moskowitz - According to various intelligence agencies Iran could have nuclear armaments ready for use against Israel by early 2013.  The devices could be nuclear bombs, or more likely, nuclear warheads on missiles. - More...
Tuesday PM - November 20, 2012

letter FIX IT RIGHT By David Boone - I have been an appliance repairman for 40 years.  My natural inclination is to fix things.  As I look at the state of national affairs today, nothing seems to be working right.  One hardly knows where to begin the repair.  May I suggest tax reform? - More...
Tuesday AM - November 20, 2012

letter Stifling our economy By John S. Fellows - I am a retired foreman from the Dow Chemical Co. My political affiliation is independent. - More...
Tuesday AM - November 20, 2012

letter Open Letter to the Ketchikan Borough Manager By Peg Travis and Dave Hirchert - We are writing with our concerns of the “new” Gateway Aquatic Center. We are disappointed in the design and construction of the facility and feel the citizens are paying for a building of inferior design and workmanship. - More...
Friday PM - November 16, 2012

letter Stopping the Use of Cigarettes By Alan R. McGillvray - I had been wanting to stop smoking cigarettes for some time. In my desire, I finally figured out that it was the first light-up in the morning that set the day. The idea that since it was that first cigarette that set me up for smoking for the day, why not just not light it up and set a whole different tone on the day. Well I tried that, and it WORKED. I still have not lit up that first cigarette of the day. That was some 3 & 1/2 years ago. - More...
Friday PM - November 16, 2012

letter RE: Abortion By Chris Elliott - Regarding Mr. Jarvi's letter: "...convince the males of our great land to not start the problem..." ? With all due respect and without expressing any opinion on abortion per se, I thought birth control pills and IUDs and whatever else is available to women were the answer to unwanted pregnancies. Unless a woman is raped or her contraception fails her, she will not become pregnant. Let's convince the females to take advantage of what's available. - More...
Friday PM - November 16, 2012

letter Ketchikan Homeless Shelter Food Drive By Gary Boatwright - The Ketchikan Homeless Shelter (PATH) is conducting its annual food drive. Collection boxes will be at local grocery stores or donations can be dropped off at the Shelter at 628 Park Avenue (across from the American Legion). - More...
Tuesday PM - November 13, 2012

letter RE: Issue of Abortion By Paul Jarvi - You have good points my good friend about the fetus, however Roe V. Wade is the law of the land. It is not a question of how to get across Ketchikan Creek. - More...
Tuesday PM - November 13, 2012

letter Fair Tax Needed By Roy T Newsom - The income tax creates a stagnant economy for the United States.  Companies have moved overseas to give their investors a tax advamtage.  They will not return to the U.S. until our system gives them an advantage in the world market. - More...
Tuesday PM - November 13, 2012

letter Col. Archie Van Winkle Is Missed By Stephen C. McGowan - On Veteran's Day we missed Col. Van Winkle, Alaska's favorite son. To his daughter for thanking me, for the Letter, you are most certainly welcome. The sad thing is that a lot of Americans only remember those who served, and those who are serving, on this Day. I asked a stranger when she mentioned the Marine Corp Patch on my sleeve if she had served our country in the military, she replied "no". I asked why not? She hesitated, and said, "That's why we have people like you". - More...
Tuesday PM - November 13, 2012

letter RE: Gas price relief By Paul Jarvi - Ms Ramsey, I just sold my beloved Ford F150. Think about an electric car. - More...
Tuesday PM - November 13, 2012

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