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SitNews - Stories In The News - Ketchikan, Alaska
November 18, 2017

Front Page Feature Photo By CINDY BALZER

November Sunrise
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Southeast Alaska: Alaska Marine Highway Tested Jet Foils in the 1980s ; Hundreds of residents took rides during demonstrations By DAVE KIFFER - Over the past four decades the Alaska Marine Highway System has looked at a variety of ways to efficiently move passengers and vehicles over Alaska's watery expanses.

Alaska Marine Highway Tested Jet Foils in the 1980s

The jet foils were approximately 100 feet long and weighed 100 tons.
Courtesy www.hydrofoil.org

It has looked at larger ferries, smaller ferries and faster twin hulled catamarans. It even considered jet foils in the 1980s.

The jet foils it considered would never have been able to carry vehicles or large amounts of cargo, but they would have been more than twice as fast as regular ferries and would have been able to carry more than 300 passengers on shorter runs within the system. One of the possible uses would have been to ferry large groups of students and adults to events like music festivals and regional sporting competitions.

The AMHS even arranged to test jet foils in Southeast in the early 1980s, affording hundreds of residents the chance to take short trips on the speedy ships.

The jet foils were built by Boeing Marine Industries in Renton and designated as Boeing 929s by the company. Boeing used technology developed by its aircraft building division to make the jet foils aerodynamically efficient. The jet foils were designed with foils that lifted the hull of the ship out of the water, decreasing drag and allowing for the greater speeds.

Initially, Boeing's first jet foils were for the Hawaiian market. Three of the original 929s began operating for Seaflite in Hawaii in 1975 and continued until Seaflite shut down in 1979. Then those three jet foils began operations for Far East Hydrofoil between Hong Kong and Macau.

In the early 1980s, other companies leased Boeing jet foils for operations in Indonesia, Korea, the English Channel, the Canary Islands and Saudi Arabia. Most notably. There was regularly scheduled Boeing jet foil service between Seattle and Victoria in the mid 1980s. 

There was also industrial uses as companies with offshore oil rigs leased jetfoils to ferry crewmembers and supplies back and forth.

The 929s were approximately 100 feet long and weighed 100 tons. Driven by twin 3,300 horsepower engines, they could reach speeds of just above 50 mph. A trip between Ketchikan and Wrangell that would take six hours on the normal ferry would take a little over two and half hours on the jet foil.

In 1982, the AHMS gave Boeing a $1.2 million contract to operate jet foils in Southeast Alaska as a demonstration project. Juneau Sen. Bill Ray secured the state funding for the project. Part of the project would be making goodwill visits to places like Ketchikan, Juneau, Sitka, Wrangell and Petersburg. Those took place in the summer of 1982.

And part was to provide regular service between Juneau, Haines, Skagway, Tenakee, Angoon, Hoonah and Sitka between June 16 and September 3, 1984.  Fairs ranged from $18 between Haines and Skagway to $47 from Juneau to Sitka. A trip from Skagway to Sitka - with an overnight in Juneau - cost $92. The AHMS also partnered with other tour providers to set up excursion tours to Tracy Arm, the Juneau Icefield and other locations in addition to remote lodges for fishing.

There was also onboard food service, part of what the jet foil called its "flight menu." A variety of sandwiches could be had for $4.

The jet foil drummed up significant publicity in the communities in Southeast and, according to a story in the Petersburg Pilot in June of 1982, more than 800 Southeast residents turned out to take rides on the jet foil.

Seattle based marketer/designer Robin Dale Spicer was living in Juneau in 1984 and helped promote the trials, which used a jet foil named the "Ares." - More....
Saturday PM - November 18, 2017

Fish Factor:
Alaska Young Fishermen's Summit Coming Up By LAINE WELCH - The biggest year classes of Alaska fishermen are phasing out of the business and fewer young cohorts are recruiting in. The Alaska Young Fishermen’s Summit has convened over a decade to help stanch that outward flow, and facilitate a future for fishing leaders.

The average age of a commercial fisherman in Alaska was 50 in 2014 compared to 40 in 1980. At the same time, the number of Alaskans under 40 holding fishing permits fell to just 17 percent, down from nearly 40 percent of total permits across the state.

The Summit coming up this year Anchorage, provides three days of fast paced networking and skill-building for newcomers to fishing and those considering the occupation as a career, although everyone from “graybeards to greenhorns” are welcome to attend.

“Age is secondary to what we are trying to accomplish and that is getting folks oriented to the whole suite of fisheries aspects from management to markets, as well as a real solid hit on looking critically at their business model,” said Torie Baker of Alaska Sea Grant in Cordova, which hosts the Summit.

“If you’re thinking about diversifying your operation or getting into another fishery or upgrading, we have a lot of great folks who come and help us with all aspects of the business parts of it,” Baker said. 

Besides business, the Summit focuses on Alaska’s role in world seafood markets, the latest science affecting fisheries and the regulatory process, which features a mock Board of Fisheries meeting.

“We actually assign roles and have folks get up there and practice public speaking, and we bring in people who play those roles in real life,” Baker said,

Networking with industry professionals and fishing peers is always one of the most popular Summit draws.

“People get totally new perspectives about fisheries across the state,” Baker said. “Just for salmon alone, there are 26 districts from Ketchikan to Kotzebue, and our longline fisheries are all over the place. It is an eye opener for these folks to get together, compare notes and challenges and aspirations.”

Fishermen’s concerns have changed over time, she said, and based on recent exit surveys, it is the environment that is now drawing the most interest.

“There is definitely a sensitivity in the oceanography and physical processes going on out there. That’s the source from which this all comes,” Baker said. “We’re working with hunter/gatherers who connect the dots every day in their lives and livelihood.”  - More...
Saturday PM - November 18, 2017



Ketchikan: Over $1 Million in Federal Grants Awarded to KIC's Education & Training Dept. - Ketchikan Indian Community’s Education and Training Department has been awarded two new federal grants to improve educational outcomes for Native students in the Ketchikan area.

According to Katie Jo Parrott, KIC Education and Training Director, Ketchikan Indian Community received a 4-year US Department of Education Discretionary grant to address higher levels of professional, vocational, and educational achievement for youth ages 12-21.

This award is a total of $988,243 across the four project years, which will facilitate one new full-time position in the Education and Training department, according to Parrott. This project will increase opportunities for technical experience, including college credit courses and career/technical courses that lead to industry credentials. Experiential one-on-one tailored learning opportunities are central to the program, which will include student opportunities for securing a 100-ton Master’s License, internships at local businesses, and completing community projects alongside Elders. Transition planning for high school students is also a key component, providing students clear pathways into either post-secondary education or employment directly after graduation.

Parrott said KIC was also awarded a 3-year U.S. Department of Justice Tribal Youth Program grant to address the issue of absenteeism and educational disengagement with youth ages 12-18 and their families.

This award, a total of $343,513 across the three years, will facilitate one (1) new full-time and one (1) new part-time position focused on bridging the gap between disengaged students, their families, and their schools said Parrott. The Tribal Youth Liaison will act as an educational support staff between the school district and tribal families, addressing barriers that impact attendance, and mentoring youth along the way. The project will include instructional workshops for families as well as advocacy at the school district level.

According to Parrott, “It is well-known that Native students show disproportionately lower levels of academic success than other populations, and it is the Tribe’s mission to change that in our district. We are proud of the work we’ve done in establishing innovative programming for Native students through our Tribal Scholars Program and Native arts and languages program at the high school level. These new projects will facilitate the expansion of programming down to the middle school level, providing increased support to families and disengaged students, as well as increased opportunities for post-secondary achievement concurrent with secondary education. This is a great addition to our other programs, which have demonstrated proven success in engaging Native youth.” - More...
Saturday PM - November 18, 2017


Columns - Commentary



DANNY TYREE: Thanksgiving: Have You Already Missed It? - As far as Thanksgiving songs are concerned, "Over the River and Through the Woods" may soon be replaced by rock group Chicago's "Does Anybody Really Know What Time It Is?"

According to a Wall Street Journal article titled "The Whenever Thanksgiving," a survey by polling firm CivicScience shows that 16 percent of respondents plan to celebrate Thanksgiving earlier than the traditional Thanksgiving Day this year, and another 13 percent are willing to experiment in the future. (And 24 percent of those surveyed thanked God that they keep an air horn by the telephone for occasions when pesky pollsters call during mealtime. At least pollsters THINK that's what they said.)

Yes, in order to work with the busy schedules of family members and lessen holiday stress, a growing number of Americans no longer consider themselves tied down by the fourth Thursday of November.

Oh, there are still traditionalists, like my elderly neighbor, who thinks Moses came down from Mount Sinai with the Ten Commandments in one hand and a recipe for mincemeat pie in the other. She won't even let the menfolk watch football on TV after the Thanksgiving Day meal (insisting that they honor indigenous peoples by receiving the play-by-play via smoke signals).

Nonetheless, a significant segment of us ARE observing Thanksgiving earlier. The Journal said one family actually celebrated its "Fauxgiving" on October 28th three days before Halloween! The gathering was marred only by the inconvenience of taking the turkey to the hospital for x-rays after fake news of Butterballs stuffed with razor blades circulated. - More...
Saturday PM - November 18, 2017

MICHAEL REAGAN: Not Sen. Moore and not Weird Al - Hello, Senator Franken.

Welcome to the growing list of creepy guys in Hollywood and Washington who apparently think it's OK - or funny -- for men in power to sexually harass or assault women and men.

We'll see if the liberal media and his fellow Democrats treat the charges against Franken as seriously as they've been treating the ones against Republican Senate hopeful Roy Moore of Alabama.

Franken, the very unfunny comedian who became the very liberal senator from Minnesota in 2009, is apologizing as fast as he can - and even calling for a Senate ethics committee to investigate himself.

But weird Al's got a lot of 'splaining to do. 

On-air radio personality Leeann Tweeden of Los Angeles has accused him of kissing her without her consent and groping her in 2006 during a USO tour in Afghanistan. 

There's even a damning photo of a grinning Franken cupping his hands over Tweeden's breasts while she slept that has quickly gone viral.

Given that sexual predators of all kinds don't commit a single sleazy act of molestation, assault or harassment and then retire, we'll probably be hearing from other women who had unwanted encounters with Franken.

In any case, Franken apparently is not Congress' lone harasser. 

We learned just this week that for years Congress has had a secret slush fund to pay off women who had been victims of sexual harassment by its members.

More than $15 million in settlements - paid by taxpayers --was spent from 1997 to 2014 to protect our duly elected slime balls from bad publicity they probably deserved. - More...
Saturday PM - November 18, 2017

jpg Political Cartoon: It's Not Just the Political Corruption

Political Cartoon: It's Not Just the Political Corruption
By Jeff Koterba ©2017, Omaha World Herald, NE
Distributed to subscribers for publication by Cagle Cartoons, Inc.


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Opinion - Letter

American Flag By A. M. Johnson - What was the more most exciting and memorable vision for this American citizen on Veterans Day? Without a doubt it was the number of young members of our society running, walking with large American flags on the edge of North Tongass highway. What a thrill to meet these young folks proudly holding the flag, waving it in response to the horn honking, the smiles and cheerful waves they offered to passing motorist, I among them. - More...
Tuesday PM - November 14, 2017

Opinion - Letter

Veterans Day 2017 By Dan Weber - The world was a dangerous place during World War I.  It was even more dangerous during World War II.  And, it was frightening enough during the Cold War that ensued.  Then came the Korean War and Viet Nam.  And, now our valiant soldiers are maimed and die in far away deserts and barren lands as we seek to stem the threat posed by Jihad. - More...
Saturday PM - November 11, 2017

Opinion - Letter

In observance of Veterans Day By Rep. Dan Ortiz - Ninety-nine years ago today, the guns fell silent on the Western Front in Europe, marking the end of World War I. The armistice with Germany had come into effect. Over nine million soldiers were killed in World War I, and another twenty-one million were wounded. After more than four years of warfare marked by death in casualty counts never before seen in modern warfare, the fighting stopped. Armistice Day later became known as Veteran’s Day, when Americans take time to reflect on the myriad of sacrifices made by our soldiers. - More...
Sataurday PM - Nvember 11, 2017

Opinion - Letter

Emergency Room Medical Costs in Ketchikan By Mike Carney - Ketchikan Gateway Borough Residents: From time to time you hear of important issues in the town we live in, this is an issue you should all be aware of. If you have had the unfortunate occasion to visit our emergency room facility at PeaceHealth, it will add insult to injury when you get all the bills. I will tell you my story. I was out hunting and scraped my eye on an alder branch. I tried to wait it out until I could get to the eye doctor. That didn’t happen and I ended up in the emergency room early the next morning. I was dealt with in an orderly fashion and I saw a doctor that I had seen many times before. He is local and works for PeaceHealth. I was there about 40 minutes and I was thankful it was such a quick turnaround. - More...
Thursday PM - November 09, 2017

Opinion - Letter

Criminal Reform By Rep. Dan Ortiz - Earlier this week, the Alaska State House passed Senate Bill 54, “Crime and Sentencing,” with 32 yes votes and 8 nays. Broadly speaking, SB 54 is a partial repeal of SB 91, which was passed last year. Although I did not vote for SB91 at the time, there are some aspects of that criminal reform bill that are worth keeping, for example: programs like pre-trial services and tougher sentences on murder and rape. However, SB 54 makes some necessary changes to SB 91, which I’ve briefly outlined below: - More...
Tuesday PM - November 07, 2017

Opinion - Letter

THE PLAUSIBLE DENIABILITY OF GOD By David G Hanger - Down the road here three dozen miles or so some moron walked into a Baptist church and killed 26 people including 14 children. About 18 hours after the event, i.e. in time for the Monday morning talk shows and news shows it had been labeled “the worst mass killing in a place of worship in the history of the United States.” Within four hours of the event the governor of the state of Texas arrived on the scene and politicized it, then introduced his entourage who each had their little speech to give, followed by first responders, who once again grandiosely performed janitorial services. - More...
Tuesday PM - November 07, 2017

Opinion - Letter

150 years of the Army in Alaska By Capt. Richard Packer - I recently attended the 150-year commemoration of the transfer of Alaska, previously known as Russian America, from tsarist Russia to the United States. The original ceremony occurred in Sitka (New Archangel while under Russian rule) on October 18, 1867, and just like the modern ceremony, the U.S. Army was present for the first ceremony. - More....
Thursday PM - November 02, 2017

Opinion - Letter

Governor Walker’s Tax Proposal Would Create a Regressive Nightmare By Ghert Abbott - Governor Walker is right to champion a broad-based tax, as the only alternative to new revenue is the continued depletion of our state’s savings and further cuts to education, public health, law enforcement, and infrastructure. However, it is essential that any broad-based tax be fairly distributed and take into consideration the sacrifices that ordinary Alaskans have already made with the halving of the PFD. - More...
Thursday PM - November 02, 2017

Opinion - Letter

TAX POLICY IN THE LAND OF OZ By David G Hanger - I realize that only you, the Christian ayatollahs and mullahs of Ketchikan, and your inordinate knowledge and profundity gleaned only in some instances from divinity or seminary school, are the true arbiters of speech, thought, association, and fact, on any subject under the sun, and that you and your spies will continue working in the dark to ensure no one regresses from your expected norm. - More...
Thursday PM - November 02, 2017

Opinion - Letter

Hunting Regulations By Chas Edwardson - Recently I asked on this forum if anyone has heard about stricter hunting regulations for non federally qualified hunters on Prince of Wales Island. - More...
Thursday PM - November 02, 2017

Opinion - Letter

RE: It’s Past Time to Achieve Parity Regarding State Education Funding By Chris Elliott - Mr. Bockhorst hits the nail on the head. - Finis...
Thursday PM - November 02, 2017

Opinion - Letter

Lost fortunes and other dividend crimes By A. M. Johnson - Shocked,I am shocked to think our legislature realizing the results of action this article brings out, had no idea the projected action to extract funds from the Permanent Fund would result in this fiscal loss. - More...
Thursday PM - November 02, 2017

Opinion - Letter

Hunting on POW! By Frances C. Natkong - To you who come to our island to hunt to kill senselessly we have to live here no matter how much you spend coming here. You kill our deer and bear that we live off all year. I've seen deer and bear carcasses with the bear hides gone and the antlers gone all trophy hunters. - More...
Thursday PM - November 02, 2017

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“Hundreds of Alaskans have reached out to my administration saying health care costs are increasingly unaffordable,” Governor Walker said. “This law will provide relief from large premium hikes for

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