Local stories syndicated regionally to all CoastAlaska stations.

Sitka administrator to step down within nine months

City Administrator Mark Gorman, speaking with the assembly at his evaluation, on April 22, 2015. (Rachel Waldholz/KCAW)City Administrator Mark Gorman will step down from the position in six to nine months. He announced his decision during last Tuesday night’s Assembly meeting (09-13-16).

Pending vote, Sitka Assembly to dedicate one mill to electric fund

160914_marinesubstation_kwongDuring their meeting last night (09-13-16), the Sitka Assembly approved a key element of their plan to raise property taxes while making Sitka more affordable. The ordinance says that if voters approve a 2 mill increase, the revenue generated by one of those mills will go towards Sitka’s electric fund.

Sitka school board beefs up policy on sexual health

After learning that chlamydia and gonorrhea had pushed Alaska to the lead nationally in STI's, board member Tom Conley -- a physician -- said "There's nothing wrong with our HIV/AIDS policy as presented -- it's just insufficient." (US Centers for Disease Control image)The Sitka School Board sent its policy covering sexually-transmitted infections back to the drawing board, after it learned it was missing the boat on the most common STI’s.

With 3 attacks in a month, Sitka bears showing ‘stress’

The Forest Service is not sure why Sitka's bears seem to be on edge. An excess of cubs, too few pink salmon -- both might part of the explanation. (KCAW image)A pair of Forest Service workers killed a charging brown bear near Sitka at the end of August. It was the third dangerous bear encounter in the Sitka Ranger District in less than a month.

King fishing over, trollers near end of summer season

Deckhand Berett Wilber anticipates the end of the summer troll season, once she offloads this pile of cohos from the F/V Alexa K. (Charlie Wilber photo)The second summer troll opening for king salmon in Southeast Alaska is finally over. The 22-day opening was the second-longest on record for the fishery. Coho fishing remains open until September 22.

Subsidies to expand rural broadband, cell service

A new plan will extend high-speed broadband and cell service in rural areas. (Photo by Ed Schoenfeld)More Alaskans will have affordable access to mobile phones and broadband internet, thanks to a change in federal communication rules and funding.

Higher taxes ‘a bitter pill’ for financially-stressed Sitkans

City administrator Mark Gorman tells the Chamber that Sitka's financial future looks "a little stressed," but he also expressed faith in the community's resiliency. Maegan Bosak (r.) looks on. Mayor Mim McConnell and finance director Jay Sweeney are in the foreground. (KCAW photo/Robert Woolsey)Sitka is doing pretty well -- for now. The administration delivered an upbeat annual report to the Chamber of Commerce this week (8-31-16), but was candid about the community’s precarious financial situation.

Cooperative Extension to keep doors open in Anchorage, Sitka

Cooperative Extension Services maintains nine district offices and five service centers. (UAF website)The Cooperative Extension Service at the University of Alaska Fairbanks planned to close two offices this fall due to state budget cuts - one in Anchorage and the other in Sitka. But today (08-31-16), Extension leadership announced a plan to keep both offices open.

Rediscovering America’s link to Chinese exploration

Hudson says that the surviving vessels of China's epic voyages 1421-1423 were left to "rot at their moorings," and their records destroyed.During the 9th Annual Paths Across the Pacific meeting in Sitka, an historian argues that the Chinese -- rather than Europeans -- discovered the New World.

Enhanced IDs help tribal members cross borders

LO-RES-FEA-PHOTO-ID-CARD-pascua-yaqui-tribal-id-card-AP100730125893-e1300734335856Enrolled members of Alaska’s largest tribal government are getting enhanced photo IDs. They can be used for border crossings and some other situations where official identification is necessary.