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Galley Tables

Apr 22 2015
KEA Organizes Board Officers for the Next Year PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 22 April 2015
Stosh Anderson, Michael Brechan and Cliff Davidson were all reelected to the KEA Board of Directors. KEA photo 
Jay Barrett/KMXT
Though election results for the board of directors were already a foregone conclusion, 237 people nevertheless attended the Kodiak Electric Association's annual membership meeting on Monday, perhaps lured by the promise of a $25 credit on their electric bill or any one of a couple dozen door prizes.

Cliff Davidson received the most votes with 765, Stosh Anderson had 751 and Michael Brechan 747. Each were incumbents running for reelection to three-year seats.

At a board meeting Tuesday, Davidson was named chairman, Ron Acarregui vice chair and Anderson secretary-treasurer.

The board will hold its monthly meetings at noon on the fourth Thursday of each month, except for August, November and December. The next scheduled meeting is April 23rd. 
Apr 22 2015
Artistic Trash Cans and Code Changes at City Council Work Session PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 22 April 2015
example_of_labeled_trash.jpgExample of labeled trash can in Anacortes, Washington. Photo by Joe Mabel

Kayla Desroches/KMXT

Artistic trash cans and housing code changes were both topics of conversation at the Kodiak City Council’s Work Session last night.

Fishing company owner Bruce Schactler stepped up to propose that the council authorize trash cans with decorative labels on them. They would be wrapped much like food cans and Schactler suggests pictures of local fish species and depictions of Kodiak history.

Schaclter says businesses could place the trashcans in front of their stores.

“They’d be their own private dumpster, their own private use, for their private business,” says Schaclter. “But it would be just an expansion of this project so it would get that much bigger around town, you’d have that much more artwork around.”

City Manager Aimée Kniaziowski brought up a couple of challenges, including restrictions within the City’s use of Alaska Waste services.

“They don’t like to do those nonstandard, empty cans, so at staff level, we thought maybe we cancel the Alaska waste,” Kniaziowski says. “But then you’re talking a person that could come around and dump those and then pay the full landfill fees where the nice part about having Alaska Waste do it is that we don’t have to pay those landfill fees.”

The council discussed partnering with volunteers and local museums. It will talk about the budget and other possible participants at a later meeting.

According to a memo in the Agenda packet, the Borough Mayor and a Joint Building Code Review Committee member are interested in gathering the Committee together to reevaluate the residential code for the engineering of buildings over 200 square feet.

Building official Doug Mathers says they would like to revisit energy requirements and update electrical and plumbing requirements to the most recent state code. He says this is how they can achieve a good rating on residential and commercial buildings from the Insurance Service Office and therefore lower insurance rates.

“I went through the report to see where we could gain points and the only place we could do any good at all was adopting a newer code. Ted and I could both be engineers, we could have all the education, we could staff the place up better, but the only… the way to get the points is by having a newer code,” says Mathers.

The City Council and Borough must first appoint – or re-appoint - members of the Joint Building Code Review Committee before the updates can move forward. Councilmembers agreed they would look at potential committee members who might be interested.

The Kodiak City Council’s regular meeting is set to take place this Thursday night.
Apr 22 2015
Three Crewmen Safe After FV Northern Pride Catches Fire PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 22 April 2015
Petty Officer 1st Class Jon Emerson assists three men out of a Coast Guard Air Station Kodiak MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter after a search and rescue mission 57 miles from Kodiak, April 21, 2015. The men were rescued off a raft after their fishing vessel Northern Pride caught fire in the engine room. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Diana Honings) 
Jay Barrett/KMXT
An 82-foot fishing tender en route from Seward caught fire northeast of Marmot Island early Tuesday afternoon, with three crewmen aboard.  The crew of the Northern Pride issued a mayday shortly after 2 p.m. and abandoned ship , according to the U.S. Coast Guard. 

The Good Samaritan vessel Dancer relayed the mayday to Coast Guard headquarters in Anchorage.

Northern Pride skipper Scott Beckstrom said in a Coast Guard release that the fire was too smokey and they couldn't fight it. He said they then donned their survival suits, launched their life raft and turned on the EPIRB and were rescued within an hour.

An MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter responded from Air Station Kodiak and hoisted the three men from the life raft in Stevenson Entrance, about 60 miles north of Kodiak Island, and brought them to Kodiak. No injuries were reported and all three crewmen were reported in good condition. 

Weather on scene was comparatively mild with gusts to 20 mph and sees three- to four-feet.

Though no signs of pollution were seen at the time of the rescue, the fate of the Northern Pride is currently unknown. 
Apr 21 2015
Pot Legal in Alaska, But No Toking Up On State Ferries PDF Print E-mail
Tuesday, 21 April 2015
Ed Schoenfeld/CoastAlaska
Despite last fall’s legalization vote, you’re still not allowed to get stoned on state ferries.

The Alaska Marine Highway System recently announced new procedures for passengers with pot.

The bottom line is -- you can’t consume marijuana anywhere on a ship, including a stateroom or the solarium.

But spokesman Jeremy Woodrow says crew members won’t actively search for pot. But they’ll monitor anyone suspected of carrying a large quantity, and in compliance with state law, passengers won’t get in trouble for having an ounce or less.

“If the passenger is discovered with more than an ounce of marijuana, the marine highway system can report that person to authorities at the next port of call,” he said. “That will be either the U.S. Coast Guard or local authorities.

He says the rules may be adjusted if new state laws and regulations call for changes.

Woodrow says anyone smoking openly will be told to stop. Crewmembers can detain people causing any kind of trouble, but that’s not common.

“People are usually fairly compliant with crew members,” says Woodrow. “Crew members aren’t out going out to create conflict. Really, all these rules are set for passenger safety.”

The measure passed by Alaska voters called for marijuana to be regulated like alcohol.

The ferry system has shut down on-board bars to save money. But Woodrow says beer and wine will still be allowed in specific parts of some ships.

“They will be allowed to purchase and consume alcohol in a section of the cafeteria. But that is the only place on board the ship they’ll be allowed to do that, other than if they have a stateroom,” he said. 
Apr 21 2015
Tusty Delayed in Ketchikan Shipyard - Will Miss First Scheduled Unalaska Run PDF Print E-mail
Tuesday, 21 April 2015
The Alaska State Ferry Tustumena pulls into its homeport of Kodiak in this KMXT file photo.
Lauren Rosenthal/KUCB
Kodiak and Alaska Peninsula residents will have to wait a little longer for the Tustumena ferry to make its return to the region.

The Tusty's first trips in May -- including a run down to the Aleutian Chain -- have been canceled due to delays in shipyard.

The vessel was only supposed to undergo minor repairs in Ketchikan this winter. But Department of Transportation spokesperson Jeremy Woodrow says the aging ferry needed some extra help.

“The work that they're doing is focused on some hull structures in areas around the car deck,” he said. “Not significant items, but they are items that need to be repaired before the vessel can be certified by the Coast Guard.”

Woodrow says Coast Guard personnel will be checking in over the next few weeks to make sure the work meets their standards. He expects the vessel to return to service by May 12.

In the meantime, affected passengers will be contacted by the Alaska Marine Highway System to set up new reservations. 
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