Southeast News

Petersburg Mental Health director awarded sabbatical

Susan Ohmer is the Executive Director of Petersburg Mental Health Services. Photo courtesy of Susan OhmerSusan Ohmer, Executive Director of Petersburg Mental Health Services, was awarded a four month sabbatical through the Rasmuson Foundation.

Hatchery chum release approved near Petersburg

Thomas Bay near the U.S. Forest Service Cascade Creek cabin (KFSK file photo)A Sitka-based hatchery organization has been granted approval for a new remote release site for chum salmon in Thomas Bay on the mainland near Petersburg. The hatchery chums, traditionally released closer to Sitka, could be an early season opportunity for commercial seiners and gillnetters. But the location has been a concern for commercial trollers and sport fishermen.

Petersburg assembly goes forward with self-pay paving

newpavement1Petersburg’s borough assembly Monday moved ahead with a program that could offer paving for some roads in the community, if neighborhoods agree to pay the cost of that paving.

Petersburg fish and game committee may try again on brown bear hunt

Brown bear at Frederick Point on eastern Mitkof Island (Submitted photo)Petersburg’s Fish and Game Advisory Committee might try again to propose a fall hunt for brown bears on the islands around Petersburg, Wrangell and Kake. The committee this month discussed ways to convince the state Board of Game to look more favorably on the proposal.

Forest plan has some changes for central Southeast Alaska

Timber production suitable lands are in green, dark green for old growth and light green for young growth, while conservation areas are shaded in blue. (Map from U.S. Forest Service, https://www.fs.usda.gov/Internet/FSE_DOCUMENTS/fseprd507647.pdf)Streams and watersheds in the Petersburg area are among those placed off-limits to old growth logging in an amendment to the Tongass Land and Resource Management Plan released in December. However, some of those same streams may be sources for second-growth timber cutting. The plan amendment also makes some other changes for national forest land in the area.

Stream restoration to repair logging damage could require more logging

Photo of Ohmer Creek from USFS November 2016 Record of DecisionThe U.S. Forest Service is moving forward with a project to restore a stream damaged by decades-old logging and road-building south of Petersburg. The work will likely mean logging some other trees on another part of the island and that’s generated some opposition.

Halibut catch for Southeast Alaska could drop for 2017

sporthalibut_pbangsManagers of halibut in the Pacific will be setting catch limits in January and could be considering a small decrease for commercial and guided sport fishing fleets in Southeast Alaska. The International Pacific Halibut Commission held its interim meeting at the end of November and scientists presented the latest information on catches and stock estimates for the valuable bottom fish.

Petersburg may offer self-pay street paving for some neighborhoods

roadworkaheadResidents on nearly a dozen unpaved streets in Petersburg could have an avenue to get new asphalt under a program that received tentative support from the borough assembly Monday night. The catch is the residents on those streets would have to pay for that paving.

Southeast’s Dungeness harvests lower than expected

Dungeness crab. Photo/ADF&GCommercial Dungeness crab fishing in Southeast Alaska this fall turned out to be below average in both harvest and participation and below what managers expected for the season.

Petersburg middle school robotics team back from first competition

From left, Malcolm Fry, Joyce Metsa, Jaden Perry, Liam Demko, Ben Marsh and Isaiah Slaven demonstrate robotics programming to the school board Tuesday.A new team of middle schoolers in Petersburg got a chance this fall to compete in robotics programming. The team demonstrated their programming skills to the Petersburg school board Tuesday night.