Local News

Legislative candidates tackle budget, social issues in school forum

Republican challenger Sheila Finkenbinder (l.) listens as incumbent Democrat Jonathan Kreiss-Tomkins answers a question offered by students in Sitka High's American Government Class. The forum was broadcast live over KCAW and taped for broadcast over local television. (KCAW photo/Robert Woolsey)The contenders to represent Sitka and its neighboring communities in the Alaska legislature met in a forum this week (10-17-16) at Sitka High School. The issues ranged far beyond the state's budget crisis.

Sitka’s Green Lake plant temporarily shut down

The Green Lake Dam, as seen in a 2008 file photo. As water levels begin to drop, the city has renewed its call for Sitkans to conserve electricity. (File photo)The Green Lake Hydro plant was shut down late Monday night (10-17-16) after a hydraulic ram failed. The 16.5 MW (megawatt) plant works in tandem with the Blue Lake Power plant to provide hydropower to Sitka.

GPIP board identifies contractor for multi-purpose dock

Selling off the park is within the GPIP board's mission: “Unlike other property owned by the 
municipality, the former Alaska Pulp Corporation mill site was acquired not for governmental 
purposes from the state or federal government, but for economic development and disposal."  (GPIP photo)In Sitka, the Gary Paxton Industrial Park Board has chosen a contractor to build a multi-purpose dock at the facility, to be completed by January 2018. The dock would primarily support the freight and fishing industries.

City appoints Ankerfelt as Sitka police chief

Sitka's newest police lieutenant, Jeff Ankerfelt, is sworn in. (Photo courtesy of the Sitka Police Department)Jeff Ankerfelt will be Sitka’s Chief of Police, effective November 1st. City Administrator Mark Gorman announced the news Tuesday (10-17-16) in a press release. Ankerfelt has been the Acting Police Chief since September, after Sheldon Schmitt took extended family medical leave.

Internet issues traced to broken equipment

A new plan will extend high-speed broadband and cell service in rural areas. (Photo by Ed Schoenfeld)Sitka experienced a few outages this weekend that severed power and Internet access.

New faucets to combat high lead levels in Port Alexander

KCAW PhotoHomes in Port Alexander are getting new water faucets this month. It’s part of an effort to minimize lead contamination in the community’s residential drinking water.

School Board elects Cass Pook president

150922_CassPook_woolseyCass Pook, Yaxthlaahaat Daxthlawadi, is the new president of the Sitka School Board. During Wednesday night’s (10-12-16) special meeting, Pook was chosen by a blind election by her four fellow school board members. The board also elected Dr. Jennifer McNichol as Vice President and Eric Van Cise as Secretary.

Passing of the gavel for new Sitka Assembly

img_9492On Tuesday night (10-11-16), nearly everything changed about the Sitka Assembly. They swore in a new mayor: Matthew Hunter. New members: Kevin Knox and Aaron Bean. All in a new building. The Assembly chambers were revitalized in the remodel of Harrigan Centennial Hall.

United Way partners with Sitka non-profits

Representatives from United Way spoke at the Chamber of Commerce meeting in Sitka on Wednesday (10-12-16). The national organization supports nonprofits across the country, by partnering with local businesses to give money and volunteers.

As electric rates rise 7%, Sitka Assembly explores other options

161014_assemblyelectric_kwongThe Sitka Assembly is raising electric rates for the second time this year, by an average of 7% across the customer base. That will close the gap in the electric fund for FY17. But the relief is short-lived. To address future shortfalls, the Assembly wants to dip into other pockets in the city’s wallet before raising rates again.