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Articles from the January 6, 2022 edition

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The Way We Were

Jan. 5, 1922 The Civic Improvement Club held its regular monthly meeting at City Hall on Saturday afternoon. The principal activity of the club at the present time is maintenance of the library and reading room which was opened two months ago. The...

 
 By Marc Lutz    News    January 6, 2022

Annual icy dip draws brave crowd to Shoemaker Harbor

For about 20 years on New Year's Day, some of the bravest in the community gather to prove their mettle by wading into the frigid water of Shoemaker Harbor for the aptly named Polar Plunge. This year...

 
 By Sarah Aslam    News    January 6, 2022

Assembly will consider increase in electricity rates

Ratepayers will have a chance to weigh in next Tuesday on the borough’s proposed increase in electricity rates for residential and commercial customers. If approved, the rate hike would increase the kilowatt-hour charge by 7.5% to 9% for most resid...

 
 By Larry Persily    News    January 6, 2022

State advertises for fill-in private ferry service; gives bidders 7 days to respond

With the Matanuska out of service longer than expected for more repair work, and the state uncertain whether it can bring an idled ferry out of a cost-saving lay-up, the Alaska Marine Highway System is seeking bids from private vessel operators to...

 

Tlingit & Haida will start wireless internet pilot project in Wrangell

Wrangell has been selected for the initial start-up of Tidal Network, a newly formed enterprise of the Central Council of the Tlingit & Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska that will bring wireless broadband internet service to underserved areas. The new se...

 
 By Larry Persily    News    January 6, 2022

State will stop paying for walk-up COVID testing at end of month

The state has decided to stop offering walk-up COVID-19 testing at Alaska’s larger airports, and to stop paying for similar free testing operations in communities statewide, including Wrangell, effective Jan. 31. The SouthEast Alaska Regional Healt...

 

It's been a wintery start to the new year statewide

High winds, deep snow, below-zero temperatures, frozen pipes, canceled flights and ice-covered everything - it was not a merry Christmas or a happy new year for many Alaskans. Ketchikan endured its...

 

Chuck Helland family asks for help

For those of you who knew Chuck Helland, you knew that he loved everyone. There is nothing more that he loved than a good conversation with a friend and a shared smile. Pops knew he was loved and in turn we knew we were loved. Pops and mom had moved...

 

Southeast needs to protect its economy

The first cruise ships are less than four months away from pulling into Southeast Alaska ports. After a year of no ships in 2020, followed by a year of weak returns in 2021, the region is looking forward to a healthy number of cruise passengers this...

 

Very different anniversaries this week

It’s helpful to remember the past, to learn from both the good and bad. Neither should be forgotten. Reliving the good can bring us joy and give us a chance to say thank you. Vowing never to repeat the really ugly moments can make us smarter and...

 

Anchorage school board reverses decision to drop face mask requirement

Anchorage public schools opened the new year with face mask requirements still in place, after the school board reversed a decision by the superintendent that would have made masks optional. Schools Superintendent Deena Bishop decided in...

 

Board of Fisheries postpones Southeast meeting due to COVID, travel weather

Citing COVID-19 concerns and weather-related transportation worries, the state has postponed the 12-day Alaska Board of Fisheries meeting that was scheduled to have started Tuesday at the civic center in Ketchikan. The meeting to consider more than...

 
 By Larry Persily    News    January 6, 2022

Matanuska delayed again; no ferry service to Wrangell for 23 days

The 58-year-old state ferry Matanuska needs additional time in a Ketchikan shipyard for steel decking replacement and other repairs, forcing cancellation of more sailings to Southeast communities and leaving Wrangell without any service between Jan....

 
 By Marc Lutz    News    January 6, 2022

GCI internet service spotty since Nov. 30 windstorm

Internet service provided by GCI was knocked out when Wrangell was pummeled by a gusty storm on Nov. 30, and three weeks later residents were still reporting outages. Technicians were able to restore service to customers by Dec. 3, but there were...

 
 By Marc Lutz    News    January 6, 2022

A look back at 2021's top news stories in Wrangell

There were about 1,000 stories in the Wrangell Sentinel last year, covering state and local budgets, the ailing state ferry system, ongoing pandemic and more — including a new owner for the Sentinel. On Jan. 1, Larry Persily bought the newspaper...

 
 By Sarah Aslam    News    January 6, 2022

Borough will apply for rec center improvements grant

The borough assembly has selected an almost quarter-million-dollar recreation center project for Wrangell’s application to a competitive, federally funded COVID-19 aid grant program, while it has also adopted its projects wish list for...

 
 By Marc Lutz    Sports    January 6, 2022

Wrangell Wolves lose to alumni in annual matchup

Basketball players get older, but it doesn't seem to hinder their performance. High school alumni competed against the current squad of Wrangell Wolves in an annual exhibition game Dec. 28, giving...

 
 By Sabine Poux    News    January 6, 2022

Alaska mariculture project in the running for $50 million federal grant

Alaska’s economic development districts are in the running to win $50 million in federal money to grow the state’s seaweed and shellfish farming industry – known collectively as mariculture. The U.S. Economic Development Administration...

 

Senate Finance co-chair says governor's budget not balanced

State Sen. Bert Stedman, who represents Sitka and central and southern Southeast, including Wrangell, is in his 20th year in the Senate, serving much of that time as co-chair of the budget-writing Finance Committee. As lawmakers prepare to resume...

 

Borough employees receive 2% pay raise

Almost 60 borough employees, union and non-union, will receive a 2% raise retroactive to July 1, 2021. A second 2% raise is scheduled for July 1 of this year. The new wage scale is the result of a collective bargaining agreement between the borough...

 
 By Sarah Aslam    News    January 6, 2022

Discarded harbor floats present a cleanup headache

Pieces of rigid foam — polystyrene — broken away from harbor floats installed in the 1970s and 1980s are bobbing along Wrangell’s waters and washing up on beaches along Zimovia Strait. Holdovers from the Shoemaker Bay harbor float replacement...

 

Trump endorses Dunleavy, who pledges not to support Murkowski

Gov. Mike Dunleavy has accepted Donald Trump’s endorsement for his 2022 reelection campaign, telling the former president he will not support Lisa Murkowski in her reelection bid for the U.S. Senate — a condition of winning Trump’s...

 
 By Marc Lutz    News    January 6, 2022

State changes road rules for ATVs; Wrangell 'essentially the same'

As of Jan. 1, Wrangell’s roadways won’t look much different after a new state regulation adopted by Gov. Mike Dunleavy’s administration took effect. Alaskans are now allowed to drive their ATVs on most roadways where the speed limit is 45 mph...

 
 By James Brooks    News    January 6, 2022

Lt. Gov. decides not to seek reelection; Dunleavy needs new running mate

Lt. Gov. Kevin Meyer will not run for reelection in 2022, leaving Gov. Mike Dunleavy free to choose a new Republican running mate this year. In an interview Dec. 28, Meyer did not rule out an eventual return to politics, but said he wants to take a...

 
 By Kyle Clayton    News    January 6, 2022

Disney music video features Klukwan songwriter

Klukwan resident and Diné (Navajo) artist Clara Natonabah wrote and sang a Navajo song that was featured in a Disney Junior Shake Your Tale with Chip 'N Dale music video. The song, titled...

 

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