A multi-million dollar baseball field in Sitka has opened the door to a possible civil rights investigation based on gender discrimination. The US Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights notified the Sitka School District in July that it had received a complaint about the new field, and the district’s alleged failure to provide comparable practice and competition facilities for girls’ softball.
Senator Lisa Murkowski visited Sitka last week and spoke to a packed house at the Chamber of Commerce about gridlock in Congress, reproductive rights, and her work with the women of the Senate. And while she wouldn't say who she’s supporting in the Republican Senate primary, it's pretty clear who she won’t be voting for.
The fast vehicle ferry Fairweather canceled its voyage to Sitka today (Wed 8-13-14) after a mechanical problem was discovered shortly after its departure from Juneau. Spokesman Jeremy Woodrow says the Fairweather was not far along on its trip to Sitka when the crew detected trouble with the exhaust systems in the ship’s two starboard engines. AMHS engineers spent the day making repairs, and the ship will return to its scheduled run on Thursday (8-14-14).
The assembly voted to award a $5.5-million contract to Dawson Construction to build a new UV Disinfection Facility, which will bring Sitka’s primary source of drinking water into compliance with federal regulations.
Assembly members agreed that the Blue Lake hydro project is a top priority for state funding, along with the city’s road and harbor systems. Members also suggested focusing on a secondary drinking water source and improved ferry service.
A US District Court judge has ruled that a newly-implemented fisheries observer program in the Gulf of Alaska may have become unreliable, and is sending federal managers back to the drawing board to fix it. The decision by Judge H. Russel Holland is being hailed as a victory by Southeast Alaska’s longline fleet, who have chafed under the new system, which requires them to carry human observers on their relatively small vessels. But federal fisheries managers see it as a win as well.
A text message alert sent out from the city on Monday warned residents that they might see yellow water coming out of the tap -- but the water is safe to drink, and meeting all drinking water standards.
The filing deadline is 5 p.m. Friday, August 8 for candidates running for mayor, assembly and school board in Sitka. So far, four candidates have filed to run for assembly and two for school board. Mayor Mim McConnell is running for reelection. No other candidate has yet filed to challenge her.