Articles from the May 31, 2023 edition

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School districts call on Legislature for permanent funding increase next year

Alaska school administrators are welcoming the $175 million in additional one-time funding in this year’s state budget, but warn that they’ll again face large deficits next year. Permanently increasing the base student allocation — the state...

 By Caroleine James    News    May 31, 2023

Assembly gives $25,000 to chamber to help pay for 4th of July

The chamber of commerce is getting a bailout from the borough as it prepares to put on the community’s elaborate Fourth of July festivities. However, these funds may be the last that the chamber gets for the next few years, as the borough e...

 By Anna Laffrey    News    May 31, 2023

State files another appeal with court to save commercial king salmon troll fishery

A federal judge has denied the state of Alaska’s request for a stay of an order that could close down the Southeast king salmon troll fishery this summer and winter. The last option to open the fishery this season is another appeal. After the j...

 By Marc Lutz    News    May 31, 2023

Donna Massin retires after 25 years educating Wrangell's students

With a quiet demeanor and a head for mathematics and physics, one teacher has helped Wrangell's students understand all those calculations for a quarter of a century. After 25 years, teacher Donna...


The Way We Were

May 31, 1923 During the past few days, several trappers have come down the Stikine with good catches of fur which they sold to local buyers. Seven huge bales of furs were included in the cargo of the Hazel B No. 4 which arrived last week from Telegra...

 By Marc Lutz    News    May 31, 2023

Art gallery to reopen in new location inside Nolan Center

Creative thinking has led to a new home for the Wrangell Art Gallery. This Saturday, during the community market, the gallery and its members will hold a grand opening at its new location inside the...

 By Caroleine James    News    May 31, 2023

Assembly approves pay cut for next library director

The borough has cut the salary of the Irene Ingle Public Library’s head librarian as it seeks to replace outgoing Library Director Margaret Villarma. At its May 23 meeting, the assembly voted to reduce the position’s salary by roughly $10,000 a year,...


Borough makes right moves to deal with costly repairs

Every homeowner, car and boat owner knows that maintenance is expensive. It’s also necessary. Particularly so in Alaska, where the weather is unkind to most everything except solid rock, and even that can erode away given enough time. Maintenance i...


Alaska shouldn't have followed this Texan into court

Remember what your parents, teachers and truant officer said: You are judged by the company you keep. Too bad Gov. Mike Dunleavy and his attorneys general didn’t think more about that before signing on to multiple lawsuits against the federal governm...


Permanent Fund not immune to inflation, investment losses

For 41 years, Alaskans have benefitted from Permanent Fund dividends. More recently, the fund also has been the biggest source of money to pay for state public services. Permanent Fund managers have long known it could one day have less available to... Full story

 By Sentinel staff    News    May 31, 2023

Fishing derby tentatively set for mid-June

The annual Wrangell King Salmon Derby is tentatively set for June 15 through July 2. Though the chamber of commerce, which is still organizing the event, hasn’t officially set the dates or prizes, the derby typically runs for about two weeks, with p...

 By Sentinel staff    News    May 31, 2023

Family Fishing Day to feature activities for young and young-at-heart

Bring a fishing pole and plenty of enthusiasm to Pats Lake for an annual event sure to lure in the whole family. Family Fishing Day on June 24 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., will have something for everyone, from lure making to casting practice and even a...

 By Caroleine James    News    May 31, 2023

Borough moves forward with power plant building repair design

Though Wrangell’s grid runs on hydroelectric power, the borough has five diesel generators on standby to provide the community with supplemental electricity in case of a blackout. Four of these five generators are housed in a deteriorating b...

 By Caroleine James    News    May 31, 2023

Assembly moves toward small tax break for firefighters

Volunteer firefighters and paramedics may be eligible for a small property tax break next year. Though the volunteers won’t save much on their taxes, borough officials see the change as a expression of appreciation for the essential work f...

 By Sentinel staff    News    May 31, 2023

Local contractor to take on pool building residing work

The siding on the exterior of the pool building is deteriorating and local contractor Johnson Construction and Supply has been awarded a contract to take on the repairs. The $474,497 contract is funded through a combination of borough funds and...

 By Sentinel staff    News    May 31, 2023

Borough faces price increase for trash disposal; ratepayers unaffected for now

The borough’s contract with waste disposal company Republic is up for renewal and the company has proposed a 25% price increase for its services to Wrangell. Other Southeast communities have contracts with Republic that are set to expire next y...

 By James Brooks    News    May 31, 2023

U.S. Supreme Court limits EPA jurisdiction to regulate wetlands

A new ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court likely exempts large areas of wetlands in Alaska from federal regulation under the Clean Water Act, a decision that has alarmed environmentalists and could speed road construction, mining and other development... Full story


A shot at learning more

Alysa Horn, center, instructs students Boomchain Loucks, left, and Jackson Pearson last Friday during drills at a three-day basketball camp at the high school gym over the weekend. Horn is the owner...


Preserving cultural heritage

Denny Leak slowly carves a killer whale totem out of a tree trunk last Thursday behind the Wrangell Cooperative Association cultural center. The totem will be one of two that will replace the old...


Gone, but never forgotten

Gig Decker, a member of the Wrangell Mariners' Memorial committee, reads from a list of names of people who made their living from the ocean and have died. Decker and his fellow committee members,...

 By Anna Laffrey    News    May 31, 2023

Ketchikan-to-Hollis ferry carries its millionth passenger

The Inter-Island Ferry Authority on May 24 welcomed its one millionth passenger since the service began operating between Ketchikan and Prince of Wales Island in 2002. As passengers arrived for the Prince of Wales ferry’s 3:30 p.m. run from K...

 By Claire Stremple    News    May 31, 2023

Legislation intended to ease shortage of nurses runs into opposition

Alaska’s nurse shortage is widely acknowledged but there’s less consensus on how to manage solutions. A bill that aims to get nurses licensed and working faster by Alaska joining a 40-state nurse licensure coalition is mired in pushback. Hos... Full story

 By Annie Berman    News    May 31, 2023

State food stamp applications backlog down to 7,000 cases

Alaska’s monthslong delay in disbursing federally funded food stamps to thousands of families still isn’t over — compelling many Alaskans to continue depending on food banks and pantries for emergency food assistance while they wait. While the state...

 By James Brooks    News    May 31, 2023

State Supreme Court rules against Dunleavy administration in union lawsuit

The Alaska Supreme Court has affirmed that the state will not be allowed to go ahead with a plan intended to make it more difficult for state employees to participate in a union. In a ruling released Friday, the court upheld and confirmed a... Full story


Classified ads

JOB ANNOUNCEMENT Wrangell Senior Center, Southeast Senior Services, a division of Catholic Community Service, is currently recruiting for a cook at $18/hour, 20 hours a week, and a driver/assistant cook at $17/hour, 25 hours a week. Apply online at...


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