Southeast News

“Startup Sitka” offers opportunities for local entrepreneurs

Photo KCAW/Katherine RoseSitka may be a long way from Silicon Valley, but that doesn’t mean innovation can’t happen here. Ken Sprague and Nickie Knight are co-founders of Alaska Small Business Innovators, a non-profit that helps to create small business development programs throughout the state.

Sitka transitions cruise ship dock to ‘super-yacht facility’

The 165' motor yacht Rebel at the O'Connell Bridge Lightering Dock. Passengers from the cruise ship Silver Shado will lighter this weekend (Sat 7-2-16) to Crescent Harbor, so that super-yachts like the Rebel can moor here. With more ships landing at the privately-owned Old Sitka Dock, the city will transition this site to "a super-yacht facility," said administrator Mark Gorman. (KCAW photo/Robert Woolsey)The Sitka Assembly approved an application for state funding to extend the Seawalk to the O'Connell Bridge, even though that site will become a "super-yacht facility."

Team MAD Dog wins R2AK

Randy Miller, Ian Andrewes and Colin Dunphy of Team MAD Dog stand with Race to Alaska co-founer Jake Beattie. The team won this year's 750-mile engineless boat race. (Photo by Deb Turnbull)The $10,000 top prize for the second annual Race to Alaska has been claimed by Team MAD Dog Racing.

TLMP amendment draft decision announced

A Tongass National Forest clearcut is shown in this 2014 aerial view. A new court decision limits logging on roadless areas of the forest. (Photo by Ed Schoenfeld/CoastAlaska News)The U.S. Forest Service moved forward Thursday with plans to transition to second-growth harvest on the Tongass National Forest within 16 years.

Woman killed in single-vehicle rollover

birdA 43-year-old Ketchikan woman died last night when the car she was driving rolled near Mile 5 South Tongass.

Efforts underway to eradicate invasive plants

Orange hawkweed (invasives.org photo)A group formed in May is trying to tackle the problem of invasive plants in the Ketchikan area.

Ketchikan Berth 3 initial repairs completed

The repair barge for Turnagain Marine Construction is seen at Ketchikan's Berth 3, damaged when the cruise ship Infinity hit the dock on June 3rd. (Photo by Leila Kheiry)A berth damaged on June 3 when the cruise ship Infinity slammed into Ketchikan’s downtown dock has been repaired and can take ships again starting Wednesday.

One injured in Sitka four-plex fire

Despite the heavy smoke, residents will be able to return to 2 of the 4 units, says Fire Chief Dave Miller. (Nick Galanin photo)One man sustained minor injuries after a four-plex caught fire on Lance Drive in Sitka on Sunday afternoon (6-26-16).

Behnken to represent Alaska on halibut commission

Linda Behnken with her sons, Halen and Rio. Behnken lives the small-boat fishing life she advocates for, but she's no stranger to IPHC politics. She's chaired the 84-member IPHC Conference Board for the last several years. (ALFA photo/Mim McConnell)Longtime Sitka resident and fisheries advocate Linda Behnken has been appointed to the six-member International Pacific Halibut Commission.

Ketchikan hospital celebrates new expansion

The new surgery suite recovery area at PeaceHealth Ketchikan Medical Center. (Photo by Leila Kheiry)Ketchikan’s community hospital just grew by about 70,000 square feet. The city-owned hospital, which is operated by PeaceHealth, celebrated the completion of a major addition this weekend with a barbecue and tours of the new space.

USCGC Maple changes command

IMG_6560The Coast Guard held a change of command ceremony aboard the Cutter Maple in Sitka yesterday morning (06-23-16). Beneath blue skies, Lieutenant Commander Mike Newell transferred command of the 225-buoy tender to Lieutenant Commander Patrick Armstrong.

‘Invasives Week’ efforts still focused on Sitka’s D.vex

D. vex grows in dense colonies. Although each individual is microscopic, together they form a dense mat resembling a sponge. (KCAW photo/Robert Woolsey)It's Invasive Species Awareness Week in Alaska. KCAW’s Robert Woolsey caught up with one of the state’s top invasive-fighters, Tammy Davis, as she coordinated a dive team in Sitka’s Whiting Harbor.

Senate committee talks about Tongass transition

(USDA photo)The plan to transition to second-growth harvest on the Tongass National Forest was discussed during a Senate Energy Committee hearing Thursday morning in Washington, D.C.

Sitka schools catch quarter-million budget break

After months of meetings and wrangling over the 2017 budget, the Sitka School board learned that fiscal year 2016, which ends in a week, will close out with a quarter-million dollar surplus.

Conservator assesses Chief Johnson totem pole

Detail of the Chief Johnson pole when the beak fell off.Conservator Andrew Todd is in Ketchikan this week to assess the condition of the Chief Johnson Totem Pole. Todd was brought up after the beak of the raven figure fell off in early April.

Volunteers retrieve injured hiker from Verstovia Trail

39188ef9-f000-4bd9-af73-fb45e77f31a6Early Sunday evening, Sitka Mountain Rescue received word of an injured hiker on the Mt. Verstovia trail. Gregory Raschick of Sitka injured his knee at 1600 feet, while descending the mountain with a group of family and friends. Raschick is a longtime volunteer for Sitka Mountain Rescue, so he knew exactly what to do.

To be or not to be…an organ donor

OrgansToDonate2Signing up to be an organ donor in Alaska is easy. But what does it mean to be an organ donor and what exactly are you agreeing to? Donna Brahaney with Life Alaska Donor Services discussed organ donation during presentations in the First City.

Ketchikan swimmer traverses Wrangell Narrows

Fog blankets Britta Adams and Mike Schuler as Adams swims through the Wrangell Narrows.(Photo by Mark Adams)Not too many people like to go for a swim in the chilling open waters of Southeast Alaska. But, Ketchikan’s Britta Adams braved the cold ocean and strong tides recently to swim more than 10 miles of the rocky Wrangell Narrows.

Hoonah Native corporation names new CEO

Russell Dick will take over as Huna Totem CEO this fall. The Native corporation for Hoonah operates the Icy Strait Point tourist attraction. (File photo)Huna Totem Corp. will soon have its first shareholder CEO. Board of Directors Chairman Russell Dick will become the corporation’s CEO and president Oct. 1.

Grocery mural tells farm-to-table story

13321809_1132783143409836_4054324007516417229_nThe paint is finally dry on a new mural in Sitka. Cara Jane Murray’s new work, Everything Comes to Life, adds a splash of color to the corner of Baranof and Oja Street, encompassing an exterior wall of a local grocery store.

Wrangell will finish rules before allowing pot biz

marijuanaWrangell won’t approve its first commercial pot operation until it has a better handle on where such businesses will be allowed.

Can Alaska learn from other ferry systems?

The Steamship Authority ferry Eagle sails between Hyannis and Nantucket, southeast of Boston. (Photo courtesy The Steamship Authority)Should the Alaska Marine Highway System be managed differently? That’s a question being asked by ferry advocates as they cope with smaller budgets and reduced schedules.

Weather played a role in Admiralty plane crash

Rescuers work at the site of a crashed small plane on Admiralty Island on Friday. (Photo courtesy Sitka Mountain Rescue)Weather may have been a factor in the April 8 plane crash on Admiralty Island, which killed the pilot and two passengers and badly injured another person on board.

Update: NTSB recovers wreckage from crash that killed three

Rescuers work at the site of a crashed small plane on Admiralty Island on Friday. (Photo courtesy Sitka Mountain Rescue)National Transportation Safety Board investigators have begun the work of determining why a Wrangell plane crashed Friday morning on Admiralty Island.

Traveling artists, Wrangell residents share observations of climate change

A group of artists is traveling through Alaska with the Sitka-based Island Institute to explore how people are navigating climate change in Alaska. The Tidelines Ferry Tour arrived in Wrangell on Monday and started a discussion with residents about changes they’ve seen in the natural world.

Mariculture initiative could boost shellfish farms

Brenda Bryan, left, and Jackie Whitmore clean shellfish at the Moss Island Oyster Farm in Peterson Bay, across from Homer. (Photo by Ron Bader/Moss Island Oyster Farm)Alaska shellfish farmers hope a new state mariculture initiative will help boost their businesses. But they warn it’s not an easy industry to expand.

BC officials introduce mine law changes in response to Mount Polley

This aerial image shows the Aug. 5, 2014, Mount Polley Mine tailings dam break and some of the damage downstream. The mine just won permission to reopen on a limited basis. (Photo courtesy Cariboo Regional District Emergency Operations Centre)British Columbia officials introduced law changes last week that would strengthen its ability to enforce mining laws in response to the Mount Polley tailings dam disaster of 2014. But critics in Alaska aren’t convinced the B.C. government would use those penalties to protect watersheds in Southeast.

Open house kicks off Wrangell’s plan to repurpose old mill for marine industry

millAs Wrangell continues to focus on marine trades as an economic driver, the borough is considering purchasing a former mill site six miles south of town to provide more room for the marine services industry.

SEAPA’s Swan Lake expansion on track for completion this fall

swan lake spillwayThe Southeast Alaska Power Agency (SEAPA) is on track to complete an expansion of its hydro storage capacity by October 2016.

U.S. prosecutors recommend 20 years in prison for Salard

Salard102814bFederal prosecutors are recommending a 20-year prison term followed by a lifetime of supervised release for former Wrangell doctor Greg Salard ahead of his sentencing hearing next week.