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Articles from the April 20, 2022 edition

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 By Sarah Aslam    News    April 20, 2022

Assembly postpones 21% water rate increase, mulls 30%

The borough assembly has postponed for the second time a decision on a proposed increase in water rates, and is now considering a 30% boost instead of the 21% rate hike originally suggested by staff. The assembly last month delayed a decision on the...

 
 By Sarah Aslam    News    April 20, 2022

Sitka boatyard closure leads to more work in Wrangell

Wrangell’s Marine Service Center has seen a 20% to 30% increase in haul-out requests after Sitka’s boatyard closed April 1. “We’ve been getting overflow from Sitka since February,” Port Director Steve Miller said April 13. Normally the...

 

Alaska joins airlines in dropping face mask requirement

Just hours after a federal court judge voided the federal face mask mandate for air travel and other public transportation, Alaska Airlines, United Airlines and American Airlines on Monday afternoon said masks would be optional on their flights....

 
 By Marc Lutz    News    April 20, 2022

Middle school spelling bee crowns first C-H-A-M-P-I-O-N in three years

With energy usually reserved for sports competitions, middle school students cheered and clapped for their classmates embroiled in a battle of words. That is, how to spell them correctly. Stikine...

 

The Way We Were

April 20, 1922 Messrs. Hansen and Lystad arrived here from Seattle recently and will enter the mild-curing seafood business. They will be located where the Ripley Fish Co. formerly had its station, and they will also have a scow near Shakes Island...

 
 By Larry Persily    News    April 20, 2022

Extra ferry sailing will pick up waitlist travelers in Bellingham

With more than 260 would-be ferry passengers stuck on a waitlist for travel out of Bellingham, Washington, and sailings full until late July, the Alaska Marine Highway System has scheduled an extra...

 
 By Sarah Aslam    News    April 20, 2022

Assembly rejects proposal to remove cap on taxable sales

The borough assembly has rejected a staff proposal to remove the cap on sales taxes payable on individual purchases. Dropping the limitation, which shuts off Wrangell’s 7% sales tax on the purchase price above $3,000, could have generated an estima...

 

Borough and tour operators get ready for visitor season

The community is short of public restrooms near the City Dock and could be short port security staff this summer if people don’t apply for the jobs soon. One is an immediate concern, while the restroom shortage requires a longer-term solution....

 

Palin does not belong in Congress

Just when we thought Alaska politics couldn’t get any sillier, we now have so many candidates running for Congress that debate organizers will need to borrow the microphones from all the karaoke bars in the state to accommodate everyone on the...

 

It's time to regulate and tax e-cigarettes

Amid all the legislative debate over the size of this year’s Permanent Fund dividend, the amount of state support for schools and loud pleas from communities across Alaska for more money for docks, sewage treatment plants, roads and building repair...

 

Merritt appreciative of award

I would like to thank everyone who wrote a letter on my behalf to the chamber of commerce. I am deeply touched and humbled by the award I received at the April 9 dinner. There are so many people in the community who are more deserving, and I am...

 
 By Marc Lutz    Opinion    April 20, 2022

Baking should be a piece of cake, not a slice of hell

It seemed like a good idea at the time. Whipping up a dessert to donate for a fundraiser should be a fun experience, but like every creative endeavor, I end up being too hard on myself, cooking the joy out of baking. A few months back, Amber...

 
 By Marc Lutz    News    April 20, 2022

Senior project addresses need to make homes easier to find

Finding a home or business in the modern age is made easier with apps like Google Maps, but what happens when an address doesn't appear in those digital location services? The problem can be made...

 
 By Sentinel staff    News    April 20, 2022

Birding festival starts Friday, runs to May 7

The annual Stikine River Birding Festival has a busy first weekend planned. It starts up Friday with a 1 p.m. virtual storytime at the Irene Ingle Public Library, then continuing the educational fun agenda with a Birding 101 class at 6 p.m. Friday...

 
 By Larry Persily    News    April 20, 2022

Chamber honors educator, youth leader, citizen of the year

A full house at the Nolan Center listened as the chamber of commerce honored Mia Wiederspohn as Wrangell’s youth leader of the year, Barbara Neyman as educator of the year, and Sarah Merritt as citizen of the year. The chamber presentation...

 
 By Larry Persily    News    April 20, 2022

Alaska trims flights through June; no effect expected in state

Dealing with a shortage of pilots until more can be trained, Alaska Airlines has announced it will cut 2% of its roughly 1,200 daily flights through the end of June. “We don’t believe it will have an impact here in the state of Alaska,” Tim...

 
 By Larry Persily    News    April 20, 2022

Alaska Seaplanes will start Sitka-Wrangell service next month

Juneau-based Alaska Seaplanes will add Wrangell to its route map starting May 26. The company, which operates a fleet of 14 single-engine aircraft, mostly nine-passenger planes, will run a daily flight from Sitka to Petersburg to Wrangell and back...

 
 By Sarah Aslam    News    April 20, 2022

Taste of Asia more than a restaurant, it's the owner's passion

When Michelle Lopez opened Taste of Asia nearly seven years ago, it was after her boyfriend had become her ex-boyfriend. She had come to Wrangell to be with him from Juneau, where her parents had move...

 
 By Sarah Aslam    News    April 20, 2022

Borough will add cemetery plots and more spaces for urns

The borough is moving to solve the problem of dwindling burial space in town. The community this summer will get a new columbarium, a structure for keeping urns, and the borough assembly has approved an expansion to Sunset Gardens Cemetery. The...

 
 By James Brooks    News    April 20, 2022

State expects to spend millions to guard against cyberattacks

The commissioner of Alaska’s Department of Revenue was called into a special meeting last month to discuss a problem: The Permanent Fund Dividend Division was under cyberattack. In a short period of time, more than 800,000 attempts were made to...

 
 By Chris Basinger    News    April 20, 2022

Fisheries Board adopts new king salmon management plan for next year

The Alaska Board of Fisheries has adopted a revised king salmon Southeast management plan in a compromise that will see sport fishery limits set before the start of the season based on a tiered system of abundance instead of changing during the...

 
 By Sentinel staff    News    April 20, 2022

Stikine subsistence chinook fishery closed again this year

For the sixth year in a row, federal managers have closed the Stikine River chinook subsistence fishery to help preserve weak runs of the returning salmon. Clint Kolarich, Wrangell District Ranger with the U.S. Forest Service, announced the decision...

 

Earthquake activity under Mount Edgecumbe subsides after brief flurry

The Alaska Volcano Observatory said that as of last Thursday the number of earthquakes under Mount Edgecumbe was declining. The earthquake activity is beneath the 3,000-foot high dormant volcano 15...

 
 By Sentinel staff    News    April 20, 2022

Mortgage relief program draws 10,737 applications in Alaska

A federally funded mortgage relief program to help homeowners hurt financially by the pandemic drew 10,737 applications in Alaska, with 43 from Wrangell. The state received $50 million in federal funds under a nationwide program to help homeowners...

 
 By Sitka Sentinel    News    April 20, 2022

Tug grounding near Sitka spilled 5,300 gallons of diesel

The state Department of Environmental Conservation has determined that about 5,300 gallons of diesel spilled from the March 21 grounding of a tugboat in Neva Strait, near Sitka. The agency calculated that about 700 gallons were recovered by surface...

 

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