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SitNews - Stories In The News - Ketchikan, Alaska
December 14, 2009

Front Page Photo by MIKE GATES

Connell Lake Dam
Front Page Photo by MIKE GATES


Alaska: Governor Parnell Proposes Fiscal Year 2011 Budgets; Prioritizes Education, Public Safety, Transportation, Resource Development - Governor Sean Parnell said today that his budget proposal for Fiscal Year 2011 promotes economic growth and opportunities for families. In the operating and capital budgets released today, the governor focused on the constitutional mandates for spending ­ on education, public safety, transportation and resource development.

The spending plan for FY2011 maintains budget discipline and limits growth of state agency operating budgets to just over 2 percent. The operating and capital budgets total $4.7 billion in state general funds. The operating budget fully funds K-12 education and increases law enforcement throughout the state.

Meanwhile, Governor Parnell proposes to spend less than the amount of revenue projected for the next fiscal year. For FY2011, the fall revenue forecast estimates a price of $76.35 per barrel of oil, with production at 623,000 barrels per day, yielding total unrestricted revenue of $5.24 billion. Based on the forecast, the governor's proposed spending level in FY2011 will result in a surplus of $500 million.

This overall general fund budget exceeds last year's because of formula-driven programs and other non-discretionary obligations, including statutory increases in K-12 school funding, Medicaid formula increases, retirement system unfunded liability increases, debt service costs, employee contracts and increasing fuel prices. When federal funds, permanent fund dividends and other non-general funds are added, the budget proposal totals $10.5 billion.- More...
Monday - December 14, 2009

Fish Factor: Catch share programs; Halibut dip; How's our salmon selling?; & Alaska seafood at the Olympics By LAINE WELCH - Federal managers have officially come out in support of catch share programs as the best tool for managing U.S. fisheries.

"Catch share is a general term for several fishery management strategies that allocate a specific percentage of the total allowable fishery catch, or a specific fishing area, to individuals, cooperatives, communities or other entities. So each recipient of the catch share is directly accountable to stop fishing when its specific quota is reached," said Dr. Jane Lubchenco, undersecretary of commerce for oceans and atmosphere.

Speaking at a press conference last Thursday, Lubchenco said while the policy is not a mandate, NOAA "enthusiastically encourages" catch share programs as a way to end overfishing, rebuild stocks and provide more stability to fishing communities.

"Business as usual with our traditional management tools is not accomplishing what we need," she said. "We find the science is compelling that catch shares help restore the health of ecosystems and get fisheries on a path to profitability and sustainability."

Crafting the details of any catch share programs will fall to the nation's eight regional fishery management councils. - More...
Monday - December 14, 2009

Alaska: Alaska Launching "Drunk Driving, Over the Limit, Under Arrest" Crackdown - In an effort to combat one of the nation's deadliest preventable crimes, the Department of Transportation and Public Facilities' (DOT&PF) Alaska Highway Safety Office is joining forces with the Alaska State Troopers and local law enforcement agencies to crack down on drunk drivers during the holiday season.

The agencies will implement the annual "Drunk Driving, Over the Limit, Under Arrest" impaired driving campaign from Dec. 16 through Jan. 3, 2010.

In 2008, Alaska recorded 62 traffic fatalities, in which 45 percent (28) were alcohol-related. To date, there have been 58 traffic fatalities on Alaska's roads, of which 24 percent (14) have been related to alcohol. These numbers are based on preliminary reports and are subject to change.

This season's effort is supported by $7.5 million in paid-national advertising to help alert everyone that if they are caught driving impaired, they will be arrested. - More...
Monday - December 14, 2009

Alaska: TWO DOGGONE SCAMS TARGET PET LOVERS; Puppy Scams Affect Pet Buyers and Sellers - "Puppy scams" are affecting those looking to buy a new puppy and breeders wanting to sell their cherished lines.

"These scams prey on emotions," said Robert W.G. Andrew, CEO of Better Business Bureau serving Alaska, Oregon and Western Washington. "They target consumers looking for a pet they can afford or breeders looking for a good home to send their pups."

Scams Targeting Puppy Buyers:

A con artist poses as a breeder and places an ad for inexpensive or free puppies in a newspaper or online classified. The scammer often only communicates through e-mails. The con artist asks the buyer to wire money for shipping, but buyers who send the funds, never receive the puppy.

An Oregon family was looking to welcome two bull dog puppies into their home after losing a family pet in an auto accident. They paid shipping costs via Western Union and later received an e-mail saying they needed to pay for a crate, transfer of ownership and insurance, but 95 percent of these costs would be refunded upon delivery of the puppies. After paying, another e-mail arrived saying the puppies were in California but need funds to cover shots, puppy licenses and state customs, which would be refunded when the dogs arrived. The buyers then realized the situation was a scam and the puppies didn't exist.

To avoid the scam: Deal locally, avoid wiring money and pay when picking up the puppy.


Scams Targeting Puppy Sellers:

A dog owner posts a newspaper or online classified ad to sell their puppies. A scam artist poses as a perspective buyer and e-mails the breeder asking for details about the puppies and requests mailing information for sending payment. The scam artist sends a check for more than the asking price and asks the breeder to forward the extra money to a person or company handling shipping. Breeders who deposit the check usually discover that the money never comes, or arrives but is stolen from another person or business's account. The breeder can be responsible for paying back the money to the rightful owner, including the funds they thought were for shipping, but really went to the scam artist. - More...
Monday - December 14, 2009

Arts & Entertainment

Ketchikan: Upcoming Events in Ketchikan - TONIGHT!!! Chad Hymas Speaks at Kayhi! Who Needs Legs When You Have Wings? A motivating presentation must be accompanied with solutions that change and inspire lives. Today more than ever, people are looking not simply for entertainment, but for direction and solid answers. Chad Hymas has spent the last three years developing solutions that transformed his life. His stories are moving, his courage unprecedented, and his insights profound. His accomplishments provide a powerful litmus test to the validity of these dynamic principles! Enjoy an inspiring presentation by a man who has found inner strength and worked to overcome. Don't miss Chad Hymas at Kayhi Auditorium on Monday, December 14th, 6-7:30pm. $15 per person, kids under 12 Free with adult. Get tickets from a Lady King or call 225-2041. Tickets at the door until sold out.

Winter Concert by the Kayhi Music Department. Get in the holiday spirit with the Kayhi Chorus, Concert Choir, Symphonic Band, and Wind Ensemble! It's an evening of variety and wintery cheer! Join the fun on Tuesday, December 15th, 7pm at Kayhi Auditorium.

Family Night at the Library. The Association for the Education of Young Children (AEYC) and the public library presents another Family Night beginning at 5:30pm on Thursday, December 17th. Come to the library for food, fun, and free books. Space is limited so free tickets must be picked up in advance at the library. The theme this month is "Rock Your Socks Off" with live music for the holidays. Bring a plate of your favorite cookies with a copy of the recipe to share with other families.

Preschool Christmas Party. The library hosts another Preschool Christmas Party with songs, stories, food and fun beginning at 10:30am on Friday, December 18th. Santa has also been invited! Bring your little ones to the library for Christmas fun!

Funky Christmas Party for Teens! The Teen Advisory Group (TAG) invites teens to enjoy a Funky Christmas Party beginning at 6:30pm on Friday, December 18th at the Library. The evening includes a Hoola Hoop competition, make-your-own mini gingerbread houses, hemp crafts, a movie, and more until late in the evening! - More...
Monday - December 14, 2009


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Questions, please contact the editor at or call 617-9696.

letterLet's Plan for Success! By W. Richard Harney - This is a personal invitation to join the KGB Planning Department's Unofficial Site. The Planning Department encourages everyone to become a member and help continue to improve the Ketchikan Gateway Borough as a vibrant and productive place to live. - More...
Tuesday AM - December 15, 2009

letter City Council Community Agency Funding By Kathleen Light - Last Thursday night the City Council decided to cut funding to the community agencies by 50% (except the Ketchikan Visitors Bureau). That, of course, includes the Arts Council. - More...
Tuesday AM - December 15, 2009

letterWin Afghanistan War By Donald A. Moskowitz - President Obama and many of his followers have dwelled on the past and attempted to blame George Bush for the country's ills. The Obama Administration has been in charge for almost a year and should have made more progress towards solving our problems, especially with a Democratic controlled Congress since 2006. It is the easy way out to blame others for problems. Bush could have blamed Clinton for decimating our military, but he didn't. - More...
Tuesday AM - December 15, 2009

letterPay raises, and other goodies By A. M. Johnson - I submitted the following to our Alaska Congressional members. The Constitution of the United States prohibits Congress from passing any law that exempts Congress from being included. The Congressional majority is shredding that precious Document at every turn. - More...
Tuesday AM - December 15, 2009

letterRE: Stimulate not Obliterate By Linda Abbott - I am responding to the letter from Rhonda Green. I am the wife of Van Abbott, KPU Telecommunications Division Manager. - More...
Tuesday AM - December 15, 2009

letter RE: Stimulate not Obliterate By Robert S. Jones -Ms. Green's letter brought to light some very serious concerns that need to be addressed regarding Ketchikan Public Utilities / Telephone Division. - More...
Tuesday AM - December 15, 2009

letterDog Park By Jeremy Reed - I have two Golden Retrievers and anyone who lives in Ketchikan knows how hard it is to find a place that accepts dogs, especially dogs of a large breed. - More...
Tuesday AM - December 15, 2009

letter Christmas Decorations By John and Mindy Lloyd - Happy Holidays. My family and I decorate our yard every year for the people who live in Forest Park and in Ketchikan.. We lost a lot of displays last year due to the snow and have yet to repair them. But sadly tonight (12-14-09) when our daughter got home she noticed our penguin blow up missing!!! - More...
Tuesday AM - December 15, 2009

letter The Year in Rebuke: An Open Letter to Obama Voters By Katharine DeBrecht - Last year at this time, you were giddy beyond words for your part in a historic election. You were utterly smitten with the first bi-racial President-elect of the United States. Like a child on Christmas Eve, you could hardly contain yourselves waiting for that Inauguration morning when this messianic figure would leave the columns in Denver behind and deliver unto you your wildest dreams once in the White House. - More...
Tuesday AM - December 15, 2009

letterOpen Letter to the Elected City Officials and Manager By Rodney Dial - Please stop insulting the intelligence of your citizens by justifying a property tax increase based upon the mill rate being unchanged for many years. As you know property taxes increase as home / property assessments increase, even if the mill rate remains unchanged. - More...
Thursday - December 10, 2009

letterStimulate not Obliterate By Rhonda Green - I've got an idea. Instead of putting the sale of Ketchikan Public Utilities Telephone Division up on the block again, voters could vote to restructure the KPU Telephone organization. - More...
Thursday - December 10, 2009

letterWard Cove Useage By Kathy Yates - I just read the Environmental Fact Sheet dated May 2009 by the EPA which has the headline: Ward Cove Sediment Cleanup: Monitoring Complete, Objectives Achieved . The report references the work that was performed in 2000-2001 stating: Regular monitoring of the sediments has taken place since the cleanup was completed. Results show that cleanup goals have been met. Environmental conditions have greatly improved. Findings show that no further monitoring is necessary . A good read of the current fact sheet would indicate that the area is now feasible for use. Perhaps we should all go read the information put out in 2007 and 2009. I did see that there will also be a five year review in 2010 so maybe that report would be the one to review once it is complete. - More...
Thursday - December 10, 2009

letterPrison in Ward Cove By Kara Steele - I think a prison in Ward Cove is a great idea! Look at Spring Creek prison in Seward - farther south, look at Walla Walla Washington. Both have each, huge prisons housing some of the worst offenders. - More...
Thursday - December 10, 2009

letterWard Cove Worries By Robert McRoberts - Well it's been a time since I wrote but I want to get some concerns I have out on the table, I will try to make it to the planning meeting. I seem to feel the planning committee has not been looking at what is happening on the north end of town. Over the last few years the south end of town has made some rather large clean up of sewer in our neighborhoods. Now it's time to start getting the north end cleaned up. There are yards out there that stink of sewer water. Their pets roll in the water and then bring the stuff back into their homes. Some people don't have the money to pay for water deliveries and draw water out of nearby streams with their house up stream.It has now gotten to where we are going to be forced to put in sewer lines out that way. But where will it all go? - More...
Thursday - December 10, 2009

letter Obama's 15 Months of Fame By Katharine DeBrecht - When President Obama appeared on The Jay Leno Show in March, one of his myriad and unprecedented appearances by a US president, he said that Washington was a "little bit like American Idol where everybody's got an opinion." Hmmm. Maybe we need an Idol Czar. - More...
Thursday - December 10, 2009

letterSchool Police Officer By Kara McElroy Steele - Just a quick comment for the issue of having a police officer in Ketchikan High School. As a graduate of Kayhi in the 80's, it takes only a minute or less to see how our lives have changed over the years. The drugs are worse, kids are taking guns and knives to school, or in the latest case up here in Anchorage....a father looked into his high school son's back pack and found home made pipe bombs. Who took care of it? The on site police officer and the Dad. - More...
Thursday - December 10, 2009

letterRe: Customer Service! By Christina Martinez - To the lady that wrote about the good customer service she was provided, I think time after time we are ridden with the fact that there is this one place that we receive excellent customer service and other places where we're not. - More...
Thursday - December 10, 2009

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Stories in the News
©1999 - 2009
Ketchikan, Alaska

M.C. Kauffman, Webmaster/Editor,
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907 617 9696

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Richard (Dick) Kauffman


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