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March 22, 2021

SitNews Front Page Photo by ED CUSHING

FV Sea Pride
Alaska Commercial Divers' tug, the Alaska Salvor, maneuvers to salvage the FV Sea Pride last week, which sank in Bar Harbor following recent snow storms. 
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Fish Factor: Halibut Prices Start Higher By LAINE WELCH - Halibut prices for Alaska fishermen for 2021 started out significantly higher than last year, despite sluggish demand and transportation logjams in some regions.

The Pacific halibut fishery opened on March 6 and two weeks later only 80 deliveries were made, 46 at Southeast ports and 34 from the Central Gulf totaling 355,524 pounds. Most landings appeared to be small lots that were purchased on consignment.

The first fish typically fetches higher prices and then drops off as the season progresses. No Alaska ports reported paying under $5 per pound whereas the 2020 price to Alaska fishermen averaged $4.

Early prices at Sitka and Juneau, where there is daily air service, were reported at $5.50-$5.75 a pound, up by one dollar from last year, and deliveries at Petersburg paid out at $5.75 straight. No ferry service and high costs for airfreight bit into buying at nearly all Southeast ports where major processors said they aren’t purchasing halibut until April or May.

Fishermen delivering to Homer were paid $5.50 a pound, also up by more than a dollar. Other buyers on the Kenai Peninsula were paying $5.25 to $5.45 for 10/20 pounders and slightly more for larger fish. Reports from Whittier pegged the price at $5.50-$5.75.

Except for small amounts bought on consignment, few halibut sales were reported at Kodiak where the price was reported at $5 a pound straight.

Pacific halibut from Alaska has been getting hit hard in recent years by fish from Eastern Canada, mostly Nova Scotia and Newfoundland, with one Alaska buyer saying that region is now in the “front seat” for fresh market sales.

Federal trade data show that in 2020 over 10.5 million pounds of Atlantic halibut were imported to the U.S. from that region, valued at $70.2 million. Another 1.5 million pounds of Pacific halibut came into the U.S. from British Columbia valued at $22 million.

Alaska halibut fishermen also are getting pinched from fresh farmed halibut from Norway which last year totaled about one million pounds, valued at $6.3 million.

Halibut caught by Russian fleets and processed into frozen fillets in China also is making inroads into U.S. markets and underselling all others. In 2019 that totaled two million pounds, valued at nearly $7 million.

Alaska’s catch limit for Pacific halibut is 19.6 million pounds. The fishery was extended by one month this year and will run through December 7.

New twists to seafood sales:

Seafood sales set records at U.S. retail last year and the trend is continuing.

Sales of fresh, frozen and pantry shelf items increased by nearly 30 percent in 2020 to almost $17 billion, outpacing meat, produce, and deli items. Perceptions of health and wellness are driving the surge, according to Seafood Source and a newly released Power of Seafood 2021 report from FMI – The Food Industry Association.

In a national survey, FMI found that one-third of Americans ate seafood twice a week in the past year and nearly 60 percent said they believed upping their intake boosts their immune systems.

A whopping 75 percent said they are eager to learn more about cooking seafood and want to be more knowledgeable about preparing and flavoring it.

How and where seafood is caught also was important and 36 percent said they preferred wild-caught fish “because it is more nutritious.”

However, preference for farm raised fish grew to 29 percent, up 10 points from 2019, with 35 percent saying it has better traceability than wild and is a healthier option. 

“I believe there is more acceptance about farm-raised seafood due to more awareness about farm-raised options. Also, salmon is a major species in seafood and often farm-raised salmon is lower priced compared to wild-caught options,” Rick Stein, FMI Vice President of Fresh Foods, told SeafoodSource.

The FMI report also showed that plant-based imitations have become more accepted by U.S. shoppers. Another report by Barclays claims that the fake fish industry is estimated to be worth $140 billion within the next decade, and could capture 10% of the $1.4 trillion global meat industry.

Nearly 60 percent of frequent seafood eaters said they are likely to try such products, while 31 percent said they would not. There also was a high correlation with healthy eating, and 62 percent cited sustainability as a major reason for turning to fish imitations.

Overall, 71 percent of American consumers said they are concerned about seafood sustainability, with 41 percent saying it is a top factor in their buying choices.

That was most evident among younger consumers Seafood Source said, citing a survey by GlobeScan shared during a Seafood Expo North America panel that called it “a key trend among seafood purchasing.”

Since 1999, GlobeScan has asked thousands of seafood consumers worldwide if they choose to reward companies that show they are “socially responsible.” Through 2017, about 20% said they would consider doing so, but in 2020 that number increased to 38%.

The recent survey found that 70% of consumers want more information from companies about sustainability and 63% want to be able to trace their fish purchases back to a trusted source. But only 25% said they actually look for ecolabels on products – except for those aged 18-34.

“That is something to really keep an eye on,” said Marife Casem, Walmart Senior Manager of Sustainability.

“There’s really a power in this generation,” she said. “They read not only the labels but the story behind the packaging.”

“The younger consumer is really leading the way and influencing change,” said Kristen Stevens, senior marketing manager for the Marine Stewardship Council, which spearheaded the seafood ecolabel movement over 20 years ago. “I suspect we’re going to continue to see this momentum caused by this younger generation.” - More...
Monday AM - March 22, 2021

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Alaska:Princess Cruises Extends Pause of Cruise Vacations From Seattle to Alaska through June 27, 2021 Posted & Edited By MARY KAUFFMAN - While Princess Cruises continues to work with various United States and Canadian government officials to try to preserve a portion of the Alaska 2021 cruise season, the company is extending its pause of cruise vacations for sailings from Seattle through June 27, 2021.  

The pause in operation affects seven-day Alaska Inside Passage cruises on Emerald Princess and Majestic Princess with ports of call including Ketchikan, Sitka, Skagway and Juneau.While Princess Cruises continues to work with various United States and Canadian government officials to try to preserve a portion of the Alaska 2021 cruise season, the company is extending its pause of cruise vacations for sailings from Seattle through June 27, 2021.  

The pause in operation affects seven-day Alaska Inside Passage cruises on Emerald Princess and Majestic Princess with ports of call including Ketchikan, Sitka, Skagway and Juneau.

U.S. Senators Lisa Murkowski and Dan Sullivan (R-Alaska) on March 3rd, introduced the Alaska Tourism Recovery Act to alleviate the Passenger Vessel Services Act (PVSA) restrictions for cruise ships transporting passengers between the State of Washington and the State of Alaska. This legislation will allow cruise ships to sail to Alaska without requiring that they stop in Canada, as U.S. law normally would require. 

Canada’s Interim Order No. 5 Respecting Passenger Vessel Restrictions Due to the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) prohibits cruise ships from navigating, mooring, anchoring or berthing in Canadian waters until February 28, 2022 or until the Canadian Government lifts the prohibition. U.S. Congressman Don Young (R-AK) also recently introduced companion legislation in the House of Representatives.

Cruise Industry News reported last week that Hannah Ray, press secretary for U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski, said there is not currently a vote scheduled in the U.S. Senate for the Alaska Tourism Recovery Act.

According to Cruise Industry News, the Act is seen a “first step” in operating cruises in Alaska and was not part of the COVID-19 relief package which many in the cruise industry thought it would be tagged onto. The Act will thus need to be part of a larger bill, or be voted on, which could be months off. - More...
Monday AM - March 22, 2021

Alaska: Holland America Line Pauses All Alaska Cruises Sailing Roundtrip from Seattle Scheduled to Depart in June 2021 Posted & Edited By MARY KAUFFMAN - Holland America Line has announced it is extending its pause of cruise operations to now include all June 2021 roundtrip sailings to Alaska  from Seattle, Washington. This includes six cruises on Eurodam and Oosterdam with a call at Victoria, British Columbia, Canada.

At this time, Alaska cruises sailing roundtrip from Seattle departing in July and onward have not been canceled. Following the earlier Canadian Transport Ministry Interim Order that closed Canadian ports to passenger vessels, discussions continue with Canadian and United States government authorities to try to preserve remaining Seattle Alaska sailings. Holland America Line previously announced the cancellation of all 2021 Alaska cruises to or from Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. 

"We continue to stay actively engaged in dialogue with authorities in Canada and the United States to understand what cruise opportunities may still exist in Alaska, knowing how important this market is not only to our brand, but to the communities and individuals who depend on our business," said Gus Antorcha, president of Holland America Line. "We share with our guests the disappointment of canceling these voyages, and we remain hopeful that we can operate some of the Alaska cruise season." - More...
Monday AM -

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Southeast Alaska: UAS stranding network team leads local volunteers for whale necropsy near Sitka - A group of volunteers from the Alaska Marine Mammal Stranding Network performed a necropsy on March 18th on a humpback whale that washed up on southern end of Kruzof Island, outside of Sitka. The Alaska Marine Mammal Stranding Network has a regional coordinator with NOAA fisheries based in Juneau. When they get a call, they alert the local coordinator in that area.

Dr. Lauren Wild, a professor with the Fisheries Technology department at the University of Alaska Southeast (UAS), is the local volunteer coordinator of the stranding network in Sitka, having recently taken over for Jan Straley, a whale biologist and professor at UAS Sitka who led the group for many decades. This means if a call comes in about a dead whale or pinniped around Sitka, the NOAA stranding folks in Juneau will get in touch with Dr. Wild and if there is an opportunity to respond, she will organize a group of local volunteers. If the animal is a pinniped or sea otter it is their policy to let the Sitka Tribe of Alaska know as well. - More...
Monday AM - March 22, 2021

Alaska: Bill to limit state spending introduced - A new bill was introduced Saturday that is said would modernize Alaska’s spending limit, manage the state budget efficiently and encourage savings if revenue increases significantly.

House Bill 141 was formally introduced during a floor session by Rep. Ivy Spohnholz (D-Anchorage) who chairs the Ways and Means Committee

Quoting a press release, while the state has an existing spending limit, the cap is ineffective because it was enacted at the height of Alaska’s oil boom at a time when spending was unsustainably high. The new proposal would modernize the spending limit by limiting spending to the average of the past three fiscal years, adjusted modestly for changes to population and inflation. - More...
Monday AM - March 22, 2021

Alaska: Bill to eliminate corporate tax loopholes introduced - Legislation to close three major loopholes that exist in Alaska’s corporate income tax structure was introduced by Rep. Adam Wool (D-Fairbanks) last week.

One key element of The Corporate Tax Fairness Act, House Bill 130, is that it is said would change the state’s corporate income tax structure to apply equally to all oil and gas producers that develop Alaska’s resources. Currently, 30 percent of Alaska’s oil production is conducted by companies that are exempt from current tax structures as they are not registered as “C” corporations. This costs Alaska an estimated $25 million to $30 million per year in lost tax revenue, a figure that could increase significantly if oil prices recover. 

Second, HB130 is said would resolve a new issue related to the federal CARES Act coronavirus relief bill. A corporation which experiences a net operating loss can typically carry that loss into future tax years and recoup a portion of the loss by reducing corporate taxes in future years. The CARES Act allowed corporations to carry any 2018-2020 losses backwards to a prior tax year. Because Alaska accepts most provisions of the IRS tax code by reference, that policy was automatically applied to Alaska’s Corporate Income Tax, meaning Alaska is set to pay retroactive tax refunds to corporate taxpayers for an estimated total of up to $200 million in the next two years. Representative Wool’s bill would sever the link to the federal tax code for this specific issue, preventing Alaska from paying large corporate refunds during our historic budget crisis. - More...
Monday AM - March 22, 2021

Alaska: Governor withdraws order restructuring Department of Health and Social Services - Gov. Mike Dunleavy withdrew Executive Order 119 from consideration on March 11th, formally setting aside his proposal to reorganize the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services.  

"I want to thank the Governor for withdrawing the executive order splitting the Department of Health and Social Services. Many of us recognize the need to reorganize the Department, but it should be done in a deliberative and thoughtful manner. I look forward to working with the Governor on this effort," said Senate Democratic Leader, Senator Tom Begich (D-Anchorage).

The decision followed a series of hearings in the House Health and Social Services Committee, which earlier voted 6-1 to advance a resolution that would have let lawmakers vote to approve or reject the restructuring during a joint floor session.- More...
Monday AM - March 22, 2021  

Melting glaciers contribute to Alaska earthquakes

Melting glaciers contribute to Alaska earthquakes
Glaciers such as the Yakutat in Southeast Alaska, shown here, have been melting since the end of the Little Ice Age, influencing earthquakes in the region.
Photo by Sam Herreid


Southeast Alaska: Melting glaciers contribute to Alaska earthquakes By JERALD PINSON - In 1958, a magnitude 7.8 earthquake triggered a rockslide into Southeast Alaska’s Lituya Bay, creating a tsunami that ran 1,700 feet up a mountainside before racing out to sea.

Researchers now think the region’s widespread loss of glacier ice helped set the stage for the quake.

In a recently published research article, scientists with the University of Alaska Fairbanks Geophysical Institute found that ice loss near Glacier Bay National Park has influenced the timing and location of earthquakes with a magnitude of 5.0 or greater in the area during the past century.

Scientists have known for decades that melting glaciers have caused earthquakes in otherwise tectonically stable regions, such as Canada’s interior and Scandinavia. In Alaska, this pattern has been harder to detect, as earthquakes are common in the southern part of the state.

Alaska has some of the world’s largest glaciers, which can be thousands of feet thick and cover hundreds of square miles. The ice’s weight causes the land beneath it to sink, and, when a glacier melts, the ground springs back like a sponge.

“There are two components to the uplift,” said Chris Rollins, the study’s lead author who conducted the research while at the Geophysical Institute. “There’s what’s called the ‘elastic effect,’ which is when the earth instantly springs back up after an ice mass is removed. Then there’s the prolonged effect from the mantle flowing back upwards under the vacated space.”

In the study, researchers link the expanding movement of the mantle with large earthquakes across Southeast Alaska, where glaciers have been melting for over 200 years. More than 1,200 cubic miles of ice have been lost.

Southern Alaska sits at the boundary between the continental North American plate and the Pacific Plate. They grind past each other at about two inches per year — roughly twice the rate of the San Andreas fault in California — resulting in frequent earthquakes.

The disappearance of glaciers, however, has also caused Southeast Alaska’s land to rise at about 1.5 inches per year. - More...
Monday AM - March 22, 2021

What Caused the Largest Known Mass Stranding of Stejneger’s Beaked Whales?

What Caused the Largest Known Mass Stranding of Stejneger’s Beaked Whales?
Seven Stejneger’s beaked whales that stranded at Palisades Point on Adak Island, Alaska.
Photo courtesy NOAA Fisheries

Alaska: What Caused the Largest Known Mass Stranding of Stejneger’s Beaked Whales? - A new scientific paper suggests that seismic activity may have been involved in a mass stranding death of whales along the Aleutian Islands.  

When whales strand along the shores of Alaska’s remote and far-flung Aleutian Islands, they may never be discovered by humans. The chain of small, sparsely populated islands arc from the tip of the Alaska Peninsula west 1,100 miles to Attu Island. 

Adak Island sits a little more than half-way between Unalaska—home to the nation’s largest fishing port (Dutch Harbor) by volume of seafood landed—and Attu Island. It was the most westerly American base during World War II, providing a base for naval operations against Japanese garrisons. After the war, it became a U.S. military outpost through the U.S.-Soviet Cold War years until the base was closed in 1997. Most of Adak Island is uninhabited and managed as part of the Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge. An estimated 100 permanent residents still live on Adak, and up to 300 people may live on the island at any one time throughout the year. There is an influx of workers related to a seafood processing plant on the island. 



The Mass Stranding

It was along the shores of NavFac Beach on Adak Island that Tom Spitler discovered a dead whale on August 3, 2018. He took photos of the carcass and showed them to his wife Lisa Spitler, an Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge biological technician stationed on Adak. She reported the stranding to NOAA Fisheries Alaska Regional Office. Biologists there determined through the photos that it was a rare occurrence: an adult female Stejneger’s beaked whale.

Five days later a local man named Eddie Wine found seven additional stranded beaked whales floating among the rocks on Palisades Point on Adak. They were just 1.2 miles northeast of the beaked whale found earlier. After he and Lisa Spitler walked the length of shore taking photos, they reported their latest findings to NOAA Fisheries. NOAA marine mammal experts determined that these whales were Stejneger’s beaked whales as well. 

Within 24 hours, an experienced stranding response team arrived on Adak Island to investigate the mass stranding event. - More...
Monday AM - March 22, 2021

Alaska: New law requiring use of engine cut-off switches announced by USCG - Operators of recreational vessels less than 26 feet in length will be required to use an engine cut-off switch (ECOS) and associated ECOS link (ECOSL) as of April 1, 2021, as the U.S. Coast Guard implements a law passed by Congress. 

The engine cut-off switch (ECOS) and ECOSL prevent runaway vessels and the threats they pose. The engine cut-off switch link (ECOSL) attaches the vessel operator to a switch that shuts off the engine if the operator is displaced from the helm. The ECOSL is usually a lanyard-style cord that attaches to an ECOS either in close proximity to the helm or on the outboard motor itself if the vessel is operated by a tiller. When enough tension is applied, the ECOSL disengages from the ECOS and the motor is automatically shut down. Wireless ECOS have recently been developed and are also approved for use. These devices use an electronic “fob” that is carried by the operator and senses when it is submerged in water, activating the ECOS and turning the engine off. Wireless devices are available on the aftermarket and are beginning to become available as manufacturer-installed options.

Each year, the Coast Guard receives reports of recreational vessel operators who fall off or are suddenly and unexpectedly thrown out of their boat. These events have led to injuries and deaths. During these incidents the boat continues to operate with no one in control of the vessel, leaving the operator stranded in the water as the boat continues on course, or the boat begins to circle the person in the water eventually striking them, often with the propeller. These dangerous runaway vessel situations put the ejected operator, other users of the waterway, marine law enforcement officers, and other first responders in serious danger. [See March 19, 2021: Coast Guard on scene with man separated from vessel in Thomas Basin, Ketchikan, Alaska)

Section 503 of the Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2018 required manufacturers of covered recreational vessels (less than 26 feet in length, with an engine capable of 115 lbs. or more of static thrust) to equip the vessel with an ECOS installed as of December 2019. Owners of recreational vessels produced after December 2019 are required to maintain the ECOS on their vessel in a serviceable condition. It is recommended that recreational vessel owners regularly check their existing ECOS system to ensure it works properly, following manufacturer’s instructions. - More...
Monday AM - March 22, 2021



RICH MANIERI: WHAT’S NEWS? IT DEPENDS ON WHO YOU ASK - I need someone to tell me what’s happening. Not a tinted version of events but what’s really happening. I make the request because mainstream (if there is such a thing) news outlets seem to fundamentally disagree about what’s important.

On Sunday morning, the top story on the Fox News website, complete with video, was rioting in west coast cities on the anniversary of Breonna Taylor’s death – a dozen or so arrests, vandalism, clashes with police. Sounded like a pretty big deal.

In the interest of balance (if there is such a thing) I went to CNN’s website. No mention of the riots.

As I write this, CNN’s top story is “Russia targeted U.S. elections in 2020.” This story is “breaking news” so it must be important. The subhead reads “An intelligence report identifies Russian efforts aimed at denigrating Biden and helping Trump.” The story is based on a U.S. intelligence report that also indicates “Iran carried out a multi-pronged covert influence campaign intended to undercut former President Trump’s reelection prospects.” - More...
Monday AM - March 22, 2021

JOE GUZZARDI: WILLFULLY BLIND WHITE HOUSE IGNORES BORDER CHAOS - The daily Southwest border updates are generating nationwide concern, except in Washington, D.C., where indifference reigns.

The latest Department of Homeland Security report showed that in February, more than 100,000 people were either apprehended by or surrendered to federal immigration officials on the U.S.-Mexico border. Those totals, a 14-year high, include about 9,460 unaccompanied minors and more than 19,240 family units, which reflect 62% and 38% increases, respectively, when compared to January’s statistics.

Nonetheless, President Biden, DHS Secretary Alejandro Majorkas, and Press Secretary Jen Psaki refuse to even hint that the administration’s lax border policies need immediate reining in. For his part, Biden has not spoken officially about what his administration calls a border challenge. But Psaki refused to call the border rush a crisis, instead labeling it “an enormous challenge.” Mayorkas, when asked a similar question about whether the border events represented a crisis, answered with a flat out “no.” - More...
Monday AM - March 22, 2021


RIC OBERLINK: UNDERPOPULATION IN THE UNITED STATES. IS THAT REALLY A THING? - As someone who has spent a good chunk of his life concerned with and warning about the dangers of overpopulation, I was somewhat taken aback to recently encounter a warning about “underpopulation.”

I had never seen the word before and a search revealed scant usage of the term, but CNBC warned, “Researchers expect the U.S. to face underpopulation….”

With over 330 million people, America is the third most populated country, after China and India. Its population has increased by 50 million during the last two decades, a figure twice the current population of Australia. California’s population density is already one-third higher than the Old World of Europe. - More...
Monday AM - March 22, 2021


FINANCIAL FOCUS: Financial Checklist for New(er) Parents Provided By BEN EDWARDS, AAMS® - If you’re a brand-new parent, or even if you’ve been one for a little while, you’re no doubt filled with the many joys your child brings you. But as caught up as you are with the feelings and experiences of today, you also need to think about the future – specifically, the financial issues that accompany a growing family. What are some of the key moves you need to make?

Here’s a “checklist” to consider:

__Establish a budget. If you’re going to meet the additional expenses of a child, plus make progress toward other objectives, such as paying down debts, you’ll need to know where your money is going. Setting a budget, and sticking to it, may seem difficult, but once you’ve gotten into the habit, it will become easier – and for many people, following a budget actually gives them more of a sense of control over their finances. Over time, expenses related to your children will change, so you’ll need to adjust your budget accordingly – for example, once a child is in school full-time, childcare expenses may drop, which could allow you to boost your savings. - More...
Monday AM - March 22, 2021

jpg Political Cartoon: World Water Day March 22nd

Political Cartoon: World Water Day March 22nd
by Peter Kuper©, PoliticalCartoons.com
Distributed to subscribers for publication by Cagle Cartoons, Inc.

jpg Political Cartoon: Anti-Asian violence

Political Cartoon: Anti-Asian violence
by John Darkow©, Columbia Missourian
Distributed to subscribers for publication by Cagle Cartoons, Inc.

jpg Political Cartoon: Tax Hike for the Rich

Political Cartoon: Tax Hike for the Rich
by Monte Wolverton©, Battle Ground, WA
Distributed to subscribers for publication by Cagle Cartoons, Inc.

jpg Political Cartoon: Minors crossing US border

Political Cartoon: Minors crossing US border
by Dave Granlund©, PoliticalCartoons.com
Distributed to subscribers for publication by Cagle Cartoons, Inc.


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jpg Opinion

Survey Results By Rep. Dan Ortiz - Thank you to everyone who has taken the Commonwealth North budget survey! As you may know, I decided to use their comprehensive budget survey in lieu of a survey directly from my office this year. I have received the results for District 36, updated last week.

When asked about the Permanent Fund Dividend, most people prefer a limited dividend approach. 42% of people prefer to “pay out the same amount this year as last year” and 25% said “suspend dividends until the State can afford them.” On the other end of the dividend spectrum, 17% said they would like to the state “pay Alaskans the full dividend from the past three years” and 16%, the least common answer, prefer to “use the statutory formula to pay next year’s dividend.”

In regard to revenue from our largest asset - the earnings from the Permanent Fund - the majority of people at 55% want to protect the Permanent Fund earnings by “following the existing payout formula,” instead of the option of taking an additional 0.5%, 1%, or 1.5% of earnings. - More...
Monday AM - March 22, 2021

jpg Opinion

U.S. Minorities Are Successful By Donald Moskowitz - In contrast to many countries, the United States, with its prevalence of schools and opportunities for all people, and due to its diversity and openness, boasts a broad spectrum of educated, intelligent and successful citizens in all disciplines who represent our entire population. This tends to promote harmony and equality.

Minorities in the U.S. are succeeding due to their desire for an education and their qualities of perseverance and motivation. They include Asian Americans, Indian Americans (from India), Cuban Americans, Nigerian Americans and Mormon Americans. Jewish Americans are successful because they have availed themselves of the opportunities in the U.S.

However, minorities in the U.S., including Jews, blacks, Latinos, Indians, and Asian Americans and others continue to be discriminated against. A recent rash of assaults have been committed against Asian Americans. Asian Americans helped build this country over the past 170 years, including the transcontinental railroad; and many of them are highly educated and are doctors, scientists, engineers, educators and business executives. - More...
Monday AM - March 22, 2021

jpg Opinion

Anti Life American Rescue (WHO?) Plan By Rob Holston - The latest COVID-19 relief bill, known as the American Rescue Plan, has passed Congress and was signed into law by the President of ALL (except unborn) Americans, Biden on Thursday, March 11th. It provides $1.9 trillion in supposed relief for Americans. However, the irony is not lost on pro-lifers. This bill is intended to save lives, yet it will fund the deaths of unborn babies all over the country and the world. - More...
Monday AM - March 22, 2021

jpg Opinion

Port Ketchikan Cruise Ship Terminal Proposal By Robert Holston - COVID-19 and two years of Cruise Ship cancellations have caused a “perfect-storm” scenario for reconsidering the Port Ketchikan Cruise Ship Terminal Proposal. For Ketchikan to become the “Vancouver” of the Alaska cruise ship industry, is not as far fetched as it may first appear. There are several major factors that serve as an enticement to this idea. Discussion points to follow:- More...
Monday AM - March 15, 2021

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Where is the wisdom in this ruling? By Louise Clark - I cannot help but question the wisdom of sending many boats and people up the Unuk River to catch one bucket per family of ooligan, with the price of fuel I’m sure everyone can afford to do that much less if you even own a boat. Would it not make more sense to send one boat of qualified fishermen to get enough for many families? Especially the elderly who cannot do that anymore. - More...
Sunday PM - March 07, 2021

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Temporary fix proposed by Don Young addresses latest failure of the Jones Act By Paul Robbins, Jr. - While the Alaska Tourism Recovery Act would provide a needed but temporary reprieve for the numerous local economies that rely on cruise ship tourism, Representative Don Young fails to take aim at the true source of the problem and a bill that has plagued the American economy for over 100 years: The Jones Act. - More...
Sunday PM - March 07, 2021

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Hug Your Trees By Donald Moskowitz - My wife and I are habitual tree huggers. We tend to all 24 of the trees on our property as often as possible, and they are wonderful trees. Back in 1978 our lot was devoid of all vegetation so we started planting trees soon after our house was constructed.  We planted all of the trees in the first 10 years, including maples, birch, crab trees, willows and pines.risk to the population. - More...
Sunday PM - March 07, 2021

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2020 Southeast Conference Mid-Session Summit By Austin Otos - I recently had the opportunity to attend the 2020 Southeast Conference Mid-Session Summit via Zoom February 9-11th. The conference mainly focused on economic forecasts in key Southeast industries, economic resiliency, and economic strategies to rebound from the pandemic. The other topics in the conference included: local disaster preparedness/response, updates to mariculture and fisheries, this year’s state and federal legislative actions, and status on the University of Alaska system. I was able to attend sessions on: state legislator panel, federal updates from Lisa Murkowski and Don Young, Tourism, and fisheries/mariculture forecasts. - More...
Sunday PM - February 28, 2021

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