Local stories syndicated regionally to all CoastAlaska stations.

Tongass committee chafes at early deadline

Industry representative Wade Zammit discusses forest transition issues during a Jan. 20 meeting at Juneau’s Aspen Hotel. (Ed Schoenfeld/CoastAlaska News)Members of the Tongass Advisory Committee are unhappy with Forest Service efforts to speed up their work.

Trying to figure out the future of Tongass timber – by February

At 17 million acres, the Tongass National Forest, pictured here near Sitka, is the country's largest. (Photo by Mike Hicks)What is the future of timber on the Tongass? That's the daunting question before the Tongass Advisory Committee, which is holding its fifth meeting in Juneau this week. But for some, the most important issues on the Tongass are the ones the committee isn’t supposed to address.

Sitkan charged with four felonies in police standoff

A Sitka man is facing felony charges following a late-night standoff with police earlier this month. A grand jury has indicted 33-year old River J. Dailey for allegedly threatening the lives of a man and his wife, and two police officers.

Heavy rains flood creeks, fill reservoirs

A dog reconsiders his walk down the Nelson Logging Road. A 12-foot high tide plus heavy rains sent Starrigavan Creek over its banks at 1 PM today (1-21-15). (Hugh Bevan photo)There is an upside to having rainy, autumn weather in the middle of winter: both Sitka’s reservoirs are filling up. Frank Rogers, Sitka’s senior hydroelectric operator, says water levels in Blue Lake rose 2 feet overnight on Tuesday (1-20-15), after over two inches of rain fell in the area.

Budget woes to stall Katlian Bay road project?

The Katlian Bay Road was authorized, along with several other transportation easements, in Public Law 109-59, aka "SAFETEA-LU," passed in 2005 when Rep. Don Young chaired the House Transportation Committee. (KCAW graphic)A six-mile extension of Halibut Point Road into Katlian Bay is slated for funding this year - but the state budget crunch may change that. The one-lane, gravel road would connect to lands owned by Sitka’s urban Native corporation.

Marijuana Town Hall: Sitkans offer ideas on cafes, kids

Municipal attorney Robin Koutchak (far left) speaks as the audience gathers for Sitka's Marijuna Town Hall. "How far do we want to go," she asked. "Do we want police to say 'Drop the brownie'?" (KCAW photo/Robert Woolsey)The City of Sitka wants to have some regulations in place by the time the public use of marijuana becomes legal in Alaska on February 24. At a Town Hall Meeting Monday night (1-19-15) residents had the chance to offer their opinions on where and if marijuana should be used in public places in the community. And as you might expect with a controversial topic like marijuana, there were opinions to spare.

Community service superstars honored on MLK Day

08-_DSC8602These students were among 30 presented with certificates on Martin Luther King Jr. Day at a ceremony at Blatchley Middle School. The students ranged from Lexie Kennedy in kindergarten to seniors at all three high schools.

Stedman: Fixing budget ‘more than a one-year conversation’

Stedman, a vocal opponent of SB21, says Alaska has to find an oil revenue structure "that doesn't change with every governor." (KCAW photo/Robert Woolsey)Stedman may be looking at one of the most difficult legislative sessions of his career. He openly opposed the previous governor’s changes to Alaska’s oil tax structure, anticipating a day of reckoning -- one that's come sooner than anyone expected.

Four rescued as F/V Eyak sinks near Sitka

Sitka search and rescue volunteer Jake Denherder took this photo of the sinking F/V Eyak from the Alaska State Trooper vessel Courage, early on January 19, 2015. (Photo courtesy of Jake Denherder.)The F/V Eyak ran aground near Calligan Island, just north of Goddard Hot Springs. Four people were rescued, including the Eyak's captain.

New administrator for Mt. Edgecumbe Hospital

Sitka’s other hospital has a new chief. The Southeast Regional Health Consortium announced Thursday that Jeff Prater has been hired as the new administrator at Mt. Edgecumbe Hospital. He took over this week from Interim Administrator Noel Rea.