(394) stories found containing 'alaska marine highway system'

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Senate committee advances measure to reject governor's takeover of ferry advisory board

A state Senate committee has advanced a measure that would block an executive order giving the governor total appointment authority over the entire Alaska Marine Highway Operations Board. State statute currently provides that House and Senate...

 
 By James Brooks    News    February 21, 2024

Legislature starts process to reject governor's change to ferry advisory panel

The Alaska Senate has taken the first formal steps needed to reject some or all of the 12 executive orders Gov. Mike Dunleavy issued at the start of this year’s legislative session, including the order that would take away the Legislature’s... Full story

 

State ferry system in 3rd year of crew shortages

Crew shortages continue to plague the Alaska Marine Highway, the ferry system’s director told a gathering of Southeast officials last week. “Our biggest shortage is in the engineering department,” where the 54 ship engineers on the payroll as...

 

It'll be hard for state to resume ferry service to Prince Rupert

Numerous challenges are stopping the resumption of Alaska Marine Highway service to Prince Rupert, British Columbia, the ferry system’s director said at a conference of Southeast officials last week. During a Southeast Conference transportation...

 

State troopers, other agencies struggle under high vacancy rates

To keep Alaska communities safe and workloads manageable, Department of Public Safety Commissioner Jim Cockrell said he would need 35% more state troopers than he has now. After he fills the 62 vacancies in the department, he wants to ask for about 9... Full story

 

State employee drops candidacy for Southeast seat in Legislature

Robb Arnold has withdrawn his candidacy to represent Ketchikan, Wrangell and Metlakatla in the state House. Arnold wrote in a statement to the Ketchikan Daily News on Thursday, Feb. 1, that he had ended his campaign. Under state law, Arnold could...

 

Ketchikan resident announces he will run for state House

I am Robb Arnold and I plan to run for the District 1 seat (Ketchikan, Metlakatla and Wrangell) in the Alaska House of Representatives. I came to Alaska in the early 1990s to work with my dad at a logging camp on Kuiu Island, near Sitka. Rowan Bay...

 
 By James Brooks    News    January 31, 2024

Proposal for electronic gambling aboard ferries swamped by problems

A Republican legislator from Wasilla has proposed legalizing electronic gambling aboard Alaska Marine Highway System ships to raise money for the state-run ferries. But his proposal encountered rough seas during its first committee hearing as... Full story

 
 By Larry Persily    News    January 24, 2024

Governor wants to take over appointment of entire ferry system advisory board

Unless the Legislature decides otherwise by mid-March, Gov. Mike Dunleavy will take over appointment of the entire nine-member Alaska Marine Highway Operations Board. State law reserves four of the seats for appointment by legislative leaders, but...

 
 By Larry Persily    News    January 24, 2024

Summer ferry schedule starts with no service first 2 weeks of May

The state ferry schedule is available for bookings for the summer season, May 1 through Sept. 30, though it opens with no stops in Wrangell until May 12 due to crew changeover between vessels. The overall schedule is the same as recent years: A...

 

Alaskans have more needs than just the dividend

The 2024 Alaska legislative session started Tuesday, Jan. 16. My main committee assignment will be to serve for the eighth year on the House Finance Committee, which is responsible for moving the operating and capital budgets to the full House for...

 

Hungry Alaskans deserve better

The director of the state agency that manages the food stamp program for tens of thousands of Alaskans says the staff is again overwhelmed with work, delaying benefits for thousands of households by months. That’s months without the food...

 

Next summer's draft ferry schedule same as this year

With the rusty Matanuska out of service pending repairs, the Kennicott scheduled for tie-up due to lack of crew and the Tazlina in the shipyard to add crew quarters, the state ferry system’s draft summer 2024 schedule is limited by the number of...

 
 By Iris Samuels    News    December 13, 2023

Murkowski pushes governor to support state funding for ferry system

U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski has sent a letter to Gov. Mike Dunleavy, urging him to include $23 million in his coming budget for the replacement of a state ferry. Dunleavy spokesperson Jessica Bowers declined to say whether the governor’s draft budget...

 
 By Larry Persily    News    December 6, 2023

Clearing work continues at slide; fundraising grows to help families

Response to the deadly landslide continues, with extensive clearing work to remove debris from along the highway to increase safety and with fundraising for families affected by the disaster,... Full story

 

Ferry system reverses trend, hiring more crew than it lost

The state ferry system has hired more crew members than have left the agency over the past four months, Marine Director Craig Tornga told a public advisory board on Friday, Dec. 1, a rarity for the system which has been plagued by a net outflow of...

 

Petition asks that state ferry system rename the LeConte

A petition is being circulated, asking the state ferry system to change the name of the LeConte, the latest in a series of efforts around the country to strip the names of people who enslaved others from public spaces. The change.org petition,...

 

Columbia out of service a week for repairs

The 50-year-old state ferry Columbia has been pulled from service, with the Alaska Marine Highway System reporting repairs is expected to take a week. The problem is in the steering system, Sam Dapcevich, spokesman for the Alaska Department of...

 

State surveys public on ferry system long-range plan

For the next week, Alaskans have a chance to register their opinions on the future of the state ferry system through an online survey that will be used to help create a long-range plan. The survey responses will be used over the next year to craft...

 

Resuming regular state ferry service to Rupert a priority

On Friday, Sept. 15, I and other stakeholders and community leaders participated in a ferry system focus group workshop for the southern Southeast service area. As state ferry service is one of the very essential elements of Southeast culture and...

 
 By Yereth Rosen    News    October 4, 2023

Alaska No. 1 in per capita funding under the federal infrastructure law

Alaska has gotten more money per capita from the federal infrastructure law passed in 2021 than any other state, according to participants at a news conference where the latest injection of funds for the state was announced. Alaska’s member of the... Full story

 

Ferry system needs to focus on restarting service to Prince Rupert

We’re all happy to have the administration’s winter schedule for the Southeast ferry system. However, there are a few downsides. The first is the exception noted in the Columbia’s schedule, which leaves several communities without service in...

 

State plans to send Matanuska into shipyard for full-hull scan

The state wants to send the Matanuska, the oldest vessel in the Alaska Marine Highway System fleet, into a shipyard for the equivalent of a full-body scan. Management wants to find out just how much of the ship’s steel has rusted, and how far the...

 
 By James Brooks    News    September 6, 2023

State will try again to find shipyard to build $325 million oceangoing ferry

A year after an effort that failed to attract any bidders, the state is again looking to hire a shipyard to build a replacement for the ferry Tustumena. Design work is still not complete, however.... Full story

 

Governor should help get the work done

Employers everywhere are finding it hard to recruit and retain employees. But it sure seems that the state of Alaska, under the disengaged leadership of Gov. Mike Dunleavy, is sinking to new lows of high vacancies. The empty desks and undone work...

 

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