Articles from the March 27, 2024 edition

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 By Becca Clark    News    March 27, 2024

Presidential disaster declaration will provide WCA with funds to clean landslide tidelands

Presidential approval of a disaster declaration for the Wrangell Cooperative Association will make more than half-a-million dollars available for the tribe to remove hazardous material from the beach covered in debris by the 11-Mile landslide on...

 
 By Becca Clark    News    March 27, 2024

Assembly hires Villarma, who talks of growth and prosperity for borough

Mason Villarma, the interim borough manager since November, is no longer interim: The assembly has agreed to offer him the job. In an executive session March 19, the assembly interviewed three...

 
 By Larry Persily    News    March 27, 2024

Crew shortage continues to limit operations at state ferry system

The Alaska Marine Highway System’s ongoing crew shortage has eased up for entry-level steward positions but remains a significant problem in the wheelhouse and for engineers, likely keeping the Kennicott out of service again this summer. As of M...

 

New club raises over $10,000 for student travel, hopes for more by June

The 6-month-old Wrangell Athletic Club has raised more than $10,000 toward its mission of paying for student travel to state competition, with plans to raise a lot more. Meanwhile, the school district has advanced more than $40,000 for student...

 

The Way We Were

March 27, 1924 Nicholas Fliness, who has the contract for building the Wrangell breakwater for the government, arrived here on the Northwestern Monday night. Mr. Fliness brought 14 men with him who will comprise his crew at the start. A camp is...

 

Community Calendar

PAJAMA STORY TIME 6 to 7 p.m. Wednesday, March 27, at the Irene Ingle Public Library. Children invited to come read bedtime stories in their PJ’s. BRAVE is hosting the I Toowú Klatseen (Strengthen Your Spirit) program from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Tuesdays,... Full story

 
 By Becca Clark    News    March 27, 2024

Property tax assessment values similar to last year

After last year’s comprehensive review of every piece of property in Wrangell pushed up the borough’s total taxable assessed valuation by more than 50%, this year’s assessment notices are tame. Property tax assessments were sent out March 20, and i...

 
 By Larry Persily    News    March 27, 2024

Ferry ridership still not back to pre-pandemic numbers

The state ferry system carried 181,000 passengers in 2023, still short of the pre-COVID numbers in 2019 and down substantially from almost 340,000 in 2012 and more than 420,000 in 1992. Overall vehicle traffic also is down, from more than 115,000 in...

 

Spring thaw uncovers recurring problem of uncollected dog waste

Problems with dog waste in town, in parks and ballfields are ongoing. While there has been some improvement in recent years, people not picking up after their dogs continues to be a recurring issue, especially with the coming of spring. “With e...

 

It's time to wake up downtown garden beds

Wrangell has a lot to offer people who live here and those who visit. Certainly the river, Native history and culture, Petroglyph Beach, the museum and fishing are on the list. So, too, is an attractive downtown. It’s spring, which means it’s time fo...

 

And time to clean up after dogs

Just as the snow and ice have melted away from the bushes and shrubs in downtown garden beds, so too have they disappeared from the parks, trails and ballfields in town — exposing the winter deposits left by dogs. Or, more accurately, left by dog o...

 

Tax credits no substitute for state responsibility

Tax credits have long been popular, growing more so every year. Supporters push them to provide government backing for new initiatives or ongoing programs, steering money to worthy causes — some unworthy ones, too — bypassing actual app...

 

Wrangell continues to show up for each other and for the community

The community of Wrangell never stops showing up for each other. It is the quality that I most appreciate about living here. It keeps me humble and hopeful for the future, because I see examples of people caring for each other every day in Wrangell....

 

Electric school bus for district hits another roadblock

The district’s electric school bus, originally scheduled to arrive in late spring through the federal Clean School Bus program, has been delayed until March 2025 due to a backlog of orders at the bus manufacturer, which could be too late for the term...

 
 By Chris Bieri    Sports    March 27, 2024

After 25 years as coach, Wrangell grad Archie Young leaves Mt. Edgecumbe

Archie Young likes to joke that August is like Christmas for the coaches at Mt. Edgecumbe, full of surprises for the season ahead. The state-run public boarding school in Sitka has new students...

 

Almost half of Wrangell school students counted as Alaska Native

Almost half of the students enrolled at the school district are counted as Alaska Native. Schools Superintendent Bill Burr confirmed that out of a total of 270 students enrolled in the district, 122 are registered as Alaska Native, while 13 are...

 
 By Becca Clark    News    March 27, 2024

Program uses running and exercise to teach children self-respect

Wrangell’s BRAVE has started its running and empowerment program, I Toowú Klatseen (ITK), for kids in third through fifth grades. The program provides free running and exercise activities, lessons in self-respect, community building and healthy de...

 
 By Becca Clark    News    March 27, 2024

Green thumbs can help beautify Wrangell again this year

This is the second year that Wrangell’s Parks and Recreation Department will host an adopt-a-garden volunteer program to help beautify downtown. Though volunteers have maintained the garden beds in years past, last year was the first year that P...

 
 By Larry Persily    News    March 27, 2024

Wrangell teens bowl over the competition at state

Five Wrangell teens know their books, chapters and verses better than any other team in Alaska, and for the second year in a row Wrangell won the state title at The Salvation Army’s Bible Bowl competition. The team was so dominant and won by such a...

 
 By James Brooks    News    March 27, 2024

House legislation would allow use of more cell photo data in search of lost people

Under legislation passed March 21 by the Alaska House of Representatives, police searching for a lost hiker could obtain cell phone and satellite phone location data without a warrant. The House approved House Bill 316 by a 38-1 margin after moving... Full story

 
 By Annie Berman    News    March 27, 2024

Research says Alaska teacher salaries below Lower 48 average

Teacher salaries in Alaska are not competitive when compared to much of the Lower 48, according to new research from the University of Alaska Anchorage’s Institute of Social and Economic Research. Alaska teachers are paid below the national a...

 
 By James Brooks    News    March 27, 2024

New federal opinion could put more land under tribal jurisdiction

A new legal opinion by the top attorney at the U.S. Department of the Interior has extended the land jurisdiction of Alaska tribes, upending decades of precedent and offering new opportunities for the state’s 228 federally recognized tribal g... Full story

 

Classified ads

HELP WANTED Johnson’s Building Supply is accepting applications for the following positions: -- Lead Warehouseman: Duties include checking in freight, stocking inventory, scheduling and making deliveries to customers, helping customers pull m... Full story

 

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