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News
Sep 22 2014
Cobell Indiant Trust Settlement Check Now Arriving PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 22 September 2014

Daysha Eaton/KYUK
    Alaska Natives have recently begun receiving checks from the Cobell Indian Trust Settlement. The checks are part of a nearly $950 million payout to plaintiffs in the Cobell Lawsuit, which was filed in the 1990s against the federal government for the mismanagement of individual Indian trust accounts.
    The accounts primarily contained money collected by the federal government from farming and grazing leases, timber sales, mining, oil and gas production, and other activities on Indian Trust Land.
    The Cobell Settlement is the largest class action settlement against the federal government.
    Filed in 1996 by the late Elouise Cobell and other Native American leaders, it sought an accounting of the individual Indian trust accounts and reform of the trust system, which had been mismanaged for over a century.
    Once the case settled, counsel for the Plaintiffs were tasked with distributing funds to 500,000 individual Native beneficiaries across the country, including Alaska.
    The first checks for the ‘trust administration class’ of the settlement were mailed out September 15th. Checks for the ‘historical accounting class’ portion of the settlement was issued over a year ago.
    But not everyone due a check has received one. It turns out the federal government doesn’t know where more than 30,000 class members of the lawsuit are.
    If you think you may be a class member but have not received payment, you can visit Indian Trust online, or give them a call at 1-800-961-6109. 

 
Sep 19 2014
Borough Fee Schedule Approval Postponed PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 19 September 2014

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    The Kodiak Island Borough Assembly last night decided the revised fee and fine schedule needed more work. Instead of passing it, they postponed the resolution until the next meeting, and asked that fees be brought up at their next work session.
    Before that vote, Borough Manager Bud Cassidy gave a brief overview of the changes this year, including an increase in the cost of throwing away your garbage:
    “This there’s probably two major changes you’ll see in the fee schedule. One is, that we’re pulling a number of the fees out of the fee schedule and we’re going to be adding to what’s called a schedule of fines. And it’s for things like fireworks, animal control; we’ll be talking to you more about that later on,” Cassidy said. “The other big thing is there is an increase in garbage fees. Everything from roll carts to dumpsters to medical waste, those kinds of things. And that’s due to our discussions we had during the borough budgeting process and the increase cost due to the cost of the constructing the lateral expansion and waste water treatment plant.”
    Assemblyman Tuck Bonney singled out the borough’s disposal fees for cars.
    “At $475 for cars, we’re basically getting so dog gone expensive people are just going to leave them on the side of the road or shoot them up and put them down at Pillar Creed or something,” Bonney said. “And if get to a place where it’s so expensive we’re just hurting ourselves and hurting the community because people won’t use the borough and won’t get rid of their cars. So I think there’s some things we need to talk about.”
    Mayor Jerrol Friend pointed out that the car disposal fee was not increased this year, but Bonney said it was still too high. Cassidy added that most cars are taken to Nick’s Auto Wrecking and not the borough landfill.
    Bonney also said the fees the borough charges for copies were too high.
    Assemblyman Mel Stephens agreed that they should be looked at.
    “The copying fees haven’t changed, and therefore I didn’t think about them. I do think that our copying charges should be designed to simply recover the cost of them – and that does include the cost of staff making the copies and so forth. Maybe 25-cents a copy does that, maybe not,” Stephens said. “I noticed that gee, we only charge 5-cents a copy for government and non-profit. I don’t know if that’s appropriate. I think maybe we don’t have to wait a full year, but the staff might think about whether their copying charges are appropriate.”
    The assembly will take a look at the revised fee schedule next Thursday at its scheduled work session.

 
Sep 19 2014
Emergency Crackdown on King Bycatch Sought PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 19 September 2014

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Daysha Eaton/KYUK

    As the Pollack season wraps up in the Bering Sea, the Association of Village Council Presidents and the Tanana Chiefs Conference want immediate action to protect declining Western Alaska wild Chinook Salmon stocks from trawl bycatch. Wednesday they filed a joint petition for emergency regulations with the U.S. Secretary of Commerce and the North Pacific Fishery Management Council to crack down on Chinooksalmon bycatch in the Bering Sea Pollock fishery for the remainder of the 2014 season. KYUK’s Daysha Eaton has more.

 
Sep 19 2014
Closed Intersection Work Should Be Done Soon PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 19 September 2014

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    Work on a buried power cable at the intersection of Mission Road and Center Avenue has forced motorists to detour around it for several days now.
    According to KEA CEO Darron Scott, the first closure was to pull the cable out of its conduit, but they found a blockage inside, and were forced to dig up more of the road to reach the blocked spot.
    As soon as the conduit is repaired, KEA can replace the old cable with a new one.
    The underground cable originally failed two weeks ago, causing a brief outage in parts of downtown at the time.

 
Sep 18 2014
The Alaska Fisheries Report PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 18 September 2014

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Coming up this week, as usual, someone changes their mind just after the AFR is put to bed, a veteran Alaska business journalist is now at the helm of Pacific Fishing Magazine, Southeast pinks returned a little stronger than expected, and The Russian Situation, all coming up on the Alaska Fisheries Report. We had help this week from KDLG’s Mike Mason in Dillingham, KFSK’s Angela Denning in Petersburg, and KCAW’s Rich McClear in Sitka.

 
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