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News
Apr 10 2015
Borough Assembly Discusses Fireworks and Landscaping PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 10 April 2015

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An example of consumer fireworks. Via Steve Harwood / Flickr 
 
Kayla Desroches/KMXT

Fireworks and landscapes were among the topics of discussion Thursday evening at the Borough Assembly work session. Complaints of firework noise coming from Mill Bay Beach brought a neighborhood resident to the table.

Joanne Shaker says the Mill Bay Beach area is just too populated for fireworks.

“I have nothing against fireworks, but there are beaches that are far away from houses,” says Shaker. “If I lived at Kalsin Bay and there were like three other houses around me, I would have no complaint. I would figure people were gonna come out and shoot fireworks because nobody lives out there. But when you can look in someone's window when shooting off a firework, maybe you should go somewhere else.”

Assembly members agreed firework noise create a problem, and they had remaining concerns, including ordinance enforcement should they ban fireworks on Mill Bay Beach and other beaches in town. Assemblywoman Carol Austerman says she's heard quite a few comments about fireworks in the last few years.

“I've only ever gotten calls from residents in Mill Bay Beach and Mission beach,” says Austerman. “They've told me the exact same thing, which is they've called the State Troopers. The State Troopers don't come for hours, because they're either not on duty, there's not enough people, and that's the response we've gotten from them historically is that their response to a noise complaint is at the very bottom in the list.”


The general consensus was it bore further discussion and the borough reserved the fireworks decision for an upcoming work session.

The assembly also brought in Matt Gandel, the Borough Engineering and Facilities Project Manager, to talk about the Long Term Care Center Landscape project. Gandel says they cleared the area of trees and put up a guard rail, and now they're working with a landscape architect to make the land more attractive. Here's Gandel talking about the Rezanoff side of the property.

“The plan consists of cutting the stumps that are remaining below grade, but leaving them in place to keep the roots stabilized in the hillside, bringing in top soil, doing some live stake plantings and then basically hydro seeding the whole hill,” says Gandel. “The hydro-seed mix is a combination of grasses and wildflowers to give it the pretty colors you see in the pretty pictures.”

Gandel says they will plant a row of rose bushes on the Mill Bay side, as the city owns most of that property. He says landscaping is the last task in the Long Term Care project and that it should be finished by the end of summer.

 
Apr 09 2015
Alaska Fisheries Report PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 09 April 2015

6.41 MB | Download MP3 | Open in popup

 

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Coming up this week, Kodiak's ComFish Alaska was jam-packed with info and toys for fishermen, and we find out how a tiny fish in Southeast is connected to the world economy. We had help from KMXT's Kayla Desroches in Kodiak and KCAW's Rachel Waldholz in Sitka.

 
Apr 09 2015
Baseball Tournament Honors Memory of Young Player Gone Too Soon PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 09 April 2015
Jay Barrett/KMXT
 
The Kodiak High School Baseball season started Wednesday afternoon with the first tournament dedicated to a talented young local teen who didn't live to make the high school team.

"We're very excited and we're very thankful to the Matautia familey for allowing us to honor Rex in the naming of this tournament,” said Kodiak head coach James Arnold.

It is the Rex Edward Matautia Invitational Tournament, named for an all-star Little League player who drowned in Lake Gertrude at Fort Abercrombie two summers ago at the age of 13.

"We're just very humble and excited for it. We're going to have Dimond coming into town, South Anchorage and Chugiak in a four game tournament,” Arnold said. “Championship game on Saturday. Those times are to be announced. We're just going to navigate around what teams end up in the championship game with the travel back off island. Yeah, we're very, very excited about it. And Kodiak playing all the late evening games, so come on out – it should be a heck of a good time."

While the visiting teams are state powerhouses, Arnold says Kodiak might have two significant advantages - our weather and our field turf ball park.

"I think what's going to help us have an advantage over teams not in our conference is the fact that we've been outside, heck, over two months now. A lot of people don't realize, you know, we start late January, and we get out there and get lots of ground balls, lots of pop ups and lots of practices."

In yesterday's early game, Chugiak blanked South Anchorage 9-0, while in the nightcap, the host Bears fell to the Dimond Lynx 8-6 in a game shortened by rain, wind and icy cold temperatures.

Action at Baranof Park resumed today at noon with South Ancorage and Dimond, and then Kodiak faces Chugiak at 4 p.m. 
 
Apr 09 2015
North Pacific Council to Act on Chinook Bycatch PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 09 April 2015
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Chinook salmon. NOAA photo 
 
Lauren Rosenthal/KUCB
This week, the North Pacific Fishery Management Council will decide whether to mount a new crackdown on salmon bycatch in the Bering Sea's biggest fishery. 

The pollock fleet could be asked to fish earlier in the year to avoid salmon. And they may face tighter limits on the number of salmon they can take without shutting down their season. 

For the last five years, the hard limit on Chinook salmon has been 60,000 fish. The council is considering a plan to lower that cap by 25 to 60 percent in years when the Chinook aren't doing well. 

Salmon runs have recently hit rock bottom in western Alaska -- triggering subsistence shutdowns and making each salmon seem more valuable to the fishermen who rely on them. 

According to genetic research, more than half of the Chinook salmon that gets taken as bycatch comes from Western Alaskan rivers. But it’s not clear how many salmon would be saved and sent back there if the new restrictions on commercial pollock fishing went through. 

The North Pacific Council’s staff members weren’t able to calculate that impact as part of an environmental review. The results will be presented to the scientists and industry stakeholders who sit on the Council this week. They’re expected to take a final vote on Friday.
 
Apr 09 2015
Tustumena Replacement Model Floats in Bulgaria PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 09 April 2015
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2014 conceptual drawing of the ocean-going ferry that would replace the Tustumena in the Alaska Marine Highway System. Glosten / Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities
 
 
 
 
Kayla Desroches/KMXT
 
The Tustumena Ferry replacement process is well underway. The Marine Transportation Advisory Board discussed the progress at its meeting yesterday. Alaska
 
Marine Highway System General Manager, John Falvey, says that they should have the detailed designs and estimates done by the middle of this December. And they're doing it not only according to the budget, but maybe even under the budget. Here's Falvey. 

“You know we had ten million, we programmed six. We feel we can get it done for six. So, there should be still four left over when we're done. We're surely  hopeful.”

Right now, Falvey says they're tank-testing in Bulgaria. 

“It's about a 25 foot model that goes into a tank larger than an Olympic-size swimming pool and that will be testing that's gonna on for quite a few months. And we can learn a lot about the hull and corrections we have to make getting the hull's computers designed and we'll get a lot of sea-keeping information.”

Falvey says the new Tustumena isn't just a copy of the first.

“It's a little bigger than the current tusty and more carrying capacity and, you know, newer engines will be a lot more fuel efficient. She'll be a little deeper in the water, so her sea-keeping will be better and just, you know, better all around.”

Falvey says while the Tustumena replacement vessel will be bigger, it will still fit in all the smaller ports. 
 
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