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What do you think of the "Unity" ticket (Walker/Mallott)
 

The LegHead Report

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HD Back on the Air
The boys in engineering have been hard at work and successfully puzzled out what happened to our HD signal. (Something to do with old equipment being replaced). The important thing is that HD 1, 2, and 3 are back on the air with an even better signal than before. Thanks Joe and Willy!
 
Early Pledge Drive

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It's that time of year when we ask for your support to help us continue to bring you the bits of radio that help you stay an informed citizen (like the debates and election updates), an entertained listener (did you hear This American Life's new spinoff, called Serial?), and apprised of community events (the community calendar is always full this time of year).

 

Not only will you be supporting all of that goodness, but you'll also be entered into a drawing for a set of cross country skis OR a snowboard from Orion's Mountain Sports if you pledge by midnight on October 29! If you're a new member, you'll be entered into a special drawing for a photography package from Simply Lovette Photograpy -- just in time for the holidays.

 

Lots of great stuff this Fall for our pledge drive, including an entire day of retro radio on October 30 (and great food). Stop by, tune in, and pledge right here via the Donate Now button or by calling 486-3181. Thanks! 

 
Jul 07 2014
Kodiak Electricity Averages 99.6-Percent Renewable
Monday, 07 July 2014

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    If you’ve noticed a slight decline in your electric bill this year, it’s because very little diesel fuel is used to generate power, according to KEA boss Darron Scott:
    “Just got some recent numbers, so for the first half of this year, we’re at 99.6 percent renewable. Which has just been great. The third turbine has been a big part of that, at Terror Lake, and it’s been able to perform really well and take care of all of our peak load situations during that heavy fish processing time, you know that March-February timeframes we have really high loads. Very useful there, plus allowed to do some maintenance on our older units as well later in the spring. The wind turbines have been doing good too, and kinda combine all around.”
    On a Kodiak Electric bill, there’s a line item called the “Cost of Power Adjustment,” or COPA, which represents the cost of using diesel fuel in electricity generation. The reduction in that is what’s driving the decline in electric bills. Scott says electric rates today are actually lower than they were at the turn of the century.
    “If you went and used the average amount of electricity, which is around 600 KWH, I believe, your bill would have been in January of 2001 about $105 give or take a few cents. And now, this January of 2014, it was about a hundred dollars. Just over a hundred dollars. So about a 4.5 percent drop January 2001 to January 2014. And that’s no inflation numbers or anything. That’s just the real hard dollars that we see.”
    And because of Kodiak’s legendary weather, Scott predicts steady electric rates in the future.

Read more...
 
Jul 07 2014
1 in 10 Kodiak Families in Danger of Becoming Homeless
Monday, 07 July 2014

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    Kodiak’s Brother Francis Shelter for the homeless is receiving a $231,126 grant from the Alaska Housing Finance Corporation. Director Monte Hawver says the shelter has been receiving this yearly grant since the mid-90s.
    “And it’s an over-umbrella grant that basically oversees the entire structure of the shelter. It pays for everything from food to staffing to our homeless prevention program, which is a really important part of what we do here in Kodiak to keep families from becoming homeless.”
    Hawver says the individual homeless rate is fairly stable in Kodiak, but the Brother Francis Shelter also operates a homelessness prevention program, and that a large number of families are at risk.
    “Basically about 1 out of 10 families are struggling here in Kodiak and in danger of becoming homeless.”
    He said the family homelessness problem is growing faster than ever.
    “We started out a number of years ago with out homeless prevention program, which was one of the first in the country. And through the years, I can remember when we helped 50 families. I can remember when we helped 100 families a year, and I thought, ‘My gosh, that’s gotten – it’s crazy.’ Last we helped 243 families. And unfortunately as the economy changes so much, and the fisheries change so much, more and more people get left behind. And it’s just become a terrible situation for quite a few families here in Kodiak.”
    Though grants like the one from the AHFC are vital, Hawver wants the community to remember that their help is important, too.
    “The homeless assistance program grant takes care of the basic needs of the shelter, and the basic programs. But we do rely on individual and organizational local grants in order to take care of all the needs of the families of Kodiak and the individuals.”
    The Brother Francis Shelter is just one of 28 organizations in 13 Alaskan communities to benefit from the AHFC’s grant award, which totals more than $5.9 million.

 
Jul 03 2014
The Alaska Fisheries Report
Thursday, 03 July 2014

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Coming up this week, the feds are recommending more seafood for young children and pregnant women; there’s still no radiation contamination to Alaskan seafood from Fukushima, and a water problem in Emmonak has a ripple effect for processors and fishermen. All that, and an exotic repurposing of a legendary crab boat in Kodiak, all coming up on the Alaska Fisheries Report. We had help from KFSK’s Joe Viechnicki in Petersburg, KDLG’s Mike Mason in Dillingham, KNOM’s Zacharia Hughes in Nome, and KCAW’s Rachel Waldholz in Sitka.

 
Jul 03 2014
Diplomas Available for those Denied Due to Defunct Exit Exam
Thursday, 03 July 2014

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    Around 60 people who attended Kodiak High School in the past dozen years or so that did not receive a diploma at graduation are now eligible for that piece of paper, thanks to the education bill that passed out of the legislature this year. Superintendant Stewart McDonald explains:
    “Because the state had put in place this exit exam component, anybody who completed everything but that, received a certificate of completion, which meant they met the standards for graduation, but didn’t pass all the components of that exam. Those students now that the state has repealed the high school qualifying exit exam are now eligible to receive their high school diploma.”
    McDonald said the school district is actively reaching out to those students:
    “First thing that we did, was locally, we sent out a letter to the last known address to every one of these individuals. And we received a number of them back with return to sender because we don’t have their current address. The state department of education and early development is committed to helping us find those remaining individuals that we were not able to get a hold of. So it’s going to be an effort by both the district and the state to locate everyone and make sure they know they can come and claim their high school diploma.”
    But even if those former students are unable to get back to receive their diploma, McDonald said they can now say they have one.
    “Here’s another way to look at it: If you’ve received a certificate of completion, whether you have your piece of paper or not from us, you can officially declare on any job application that you in fact have a high school diploma. Whether you actually received the actual piece of paper or not, it’s official, you have a diploma.”
    McDonald said he would be happy to do a little more than just toss a diploma in the mail if the former student so desires.
    “Every single one that we’re able to get here in person, if I can have a board member present, we will certainly recognize them with as much pomp and circumstance as we can afford at that moment.”
    Give the Kodiak Island Borough School District central office a call if you didn’t pass the now-defunct state exit exam, because they have a high school diploma waiting for you.

 
Jul 03 2014
Groundwork Being Laid for New KEA Headquarters
Thursday, 03 July 2014

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    If you noticed some heavy equipment working right up to the sidewalk on Mill Bay Road recently, it’s the new headquarters for Kodiak Electric Association. KEA CEO Darron Scott:
    “The board decided in early May to move forward with the new building design we‘ve got going on. It’s right over there by Ardingers on Mill Bay, and it connects up to our operations facility which is on Chichenoff, right behind on Mill Bay. We started breaking ground a few weeks ago, and looking forward to final construction next summer.”
    The public facing side will be along Mill Bay Road, which Scott says should be more convenient for KEA members than the current spot on Marine Way. He said it would also serve to consolidate the co-op’s operations:
    “Well what we got is it’s not going to be just for this one building here. We’ve got facilities where our power generation folks are at, we’ve got facilities in this downtown headquarters and we’ve also got folks stationed out at our operations building. The oldest building is this building right here – the headquart5ers building. It’s a 1960s tin building. We took a look at that and it needed quite a bit of work to get up to par and putting a lot of money into a 1960s building, it was much more cost-effective to look at a new building. Tehn we also looked at our physical assets, so we’re moving everybody together under one roof. And that’ll be at the Mill Bay site, so we’ll have all groups working together under one roof, which will always add to better communication, those type of things as well and lower our future maintenance costs on building infrastructure and those types of things.”
    The project is expected to cost $10-million, but it shouldn’t affect your electric bill.
    “We’re not projecting any rates due to the building at this time,” he said.

 
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