(202) stories found containing 'seapa'


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  • Borough to absorb wholesale electric rate hike until rate reevaluation in spring

    Caroleine James, Wrangell Sentinel|Jan 11, 2023

    The Southeast Alaska Power Agency (SEAPA) has approved an electricity rate hike of a quarter of a cent per kilowatt hour. The additional charge went into effect for its three municipalities — Ketchikan, Wrangell and Petersburg — on Jan. 1, but Wrangell Borough Manager Jeff Good will not consider increasing retail electricity rates until spring, during the annual rate revaluation period. “I don’t plan on bringing it before the assembly until we do our normal rate evaluations coming up,” he said. “When we do our other rate adjustments...

  • Utility needs to boost line capacity out of power plant for future needs

    Sarah Aslam|Jan 20, 2022

    Wrangell's generating plant has an eight-megawatt line out the door but needs to go up to 12 megawatts if it wants to fully serve the power needs of the community during shortages, according to the head of the utility department. This need, while known for a couple of years, was starkly illuminated by two back-to-back events, said Superintendent Rod Rhoades at Wrangell Municipal Light & Power. The first was a Nov. 30 windstorm that severed the Southeast Alaska Power Agency's feeder lines in...

  • Assembly raises electricity rates; first in eight years

    Sarah Aslam|Jan 13, 2022

    The borough assembly voted unanimously Tuesday to approve an electricity rate hike that will increase the kilowatt-hour charge by 7.5% to 9% for most residential and business customers in Wrangell. The rate increase comes after the Southeast Alaska Power Agency, which provides Tyee Lake hydroelectric power to Wrangell, Petersburg and Ketchikan, notified the borough in early December that it would increase its wholesale power rate by a quarter-of-a-cent per kilowatt-hour, from 6.8 cents per kWh to 7.05 cents. The borough’s increase in retail r...

  • Assembly will consider increase in electricity rates

    Sarah Aslam|Jan 6, 2022

    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 residential and business customers in Wrangell. The move comes after the Southeast Alaska Power Agency, which provides Tyee Lake hydroelectric power to Wrangell, Petersburg and Ketchikan, notified the borough in early December that it would increase its wholesale power rates by a quarter of a cent per kilo...

  • Unexpected wind gusts knock out power in town

    Sarah Aslam|Dec 2, 2021

    An unexpected, strong weather system sent high winds tearing through Wrangell, snapping three Southeast Alaska Power Agency poles which blocked the highway at City Park and knocked out power to most of Wrangell for much of Tuesday afternoon into the evening. A peak wind gust of 54 mph out of the southwest was detected on Zarembo Island at 1:55 p.m., said Wes Adkins, a lead meteorologist at the National Weather Service Juneau Forecast Office. The U.S. Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management operate a remote, automated weather system on...

  • Power restored to remaining 90 homes without light in Wrangell

    Sarah Aslam|Dec 2, 2021

    The aftermath of an unexpectedly strong Tuesday weather system affected life in Wrangell, postponing community events and unfurling an outpouring of support amid power outages. Power was restored to about 90 households early Thursday morning, according to Kim Lane, acting borough manager. Power poles at City Park are up and repaired, and power has been restored to the island. Crews worked through the night to restore the power, Lane said in a message. "Having roughly 100 homes without power...

  • Power agency will start laying new undersea cable

    Larry Persily|Jun 17, 2021

    A cable-laying barge is scheduled to start work between Vank and Woronkofski islands the first week of July to replace a 3.5-mile section of the power line that connects Wrangell and Petersburg. The undersea cable, which was installed in 1983, developed a fault in September 2019. The Southeast Alaska Power Agency has been working on plans and permits for the replacement project, which is estimated to cost almost $14 million. Preparations are already underway, with crews about 60% finished with shoreside connection work on Vank and Woronkofski,...

  • Power agency will replace submarine cable next month

    The Petersburg Pilot|Jun 3, 2021

    The Southeast Alaska Power Agency plans to begin an eight-day process July 1 of removing a damaged submarine electrical cable and replacing it with a new line between Woronkofski and Vank islands, SEAPA CEO Trey Acteson told the Petersburg borough assembly May 17. Crews will lay about 3.5 miles of new cable. The manufacturing and installation of the cable is estimated to cost about $13.4 million, Acteson said SEAPA board member Bob Lynn told the assembly at an earlier meeting that the regional power agency would likely need to raise its rates t...

  • SEAPA still reviewing fire damage

    May 27, 2021

    The Southeast Alaska Power Agency continues to review damage and repair costs after a fire at its Zimovia Highway warehouse and office building May 13. The fire did not affect electrical service to the community. The Sentinel last week incorrectly reported the fire caused “minimal damage.” The news report should have said SEAPA was “appreciative of the rapid response of the Wrangell Volunteer Fire Department, which minimized damage to the structure and its contents....

  • SEAPA fire

    May 20, 2021

    The Southeast Alaska Power Agency reported "minimal damage to the structure and its contents" from a fire May 13 at its warehouse and office building at 4408 Zimovia Highway. "The root cause and anticipated cost of repairs is under review," the agency said. The fire struck about 9 a.m. and did not affect electrical service to the community....

  • Cable ship moves GCI fiber optic line this week

    Larry Persily|Mar 11, 2021

    A ship built especially for laying fiber optic cable on the ocean floor was in front of Wrangell this week, moving GCI's Seafast communications cable into a safer position away from underwater power lines and the risk of sediment avalanches. The 477-foot-long, 78-foot-wide Cable Innovator, built in a shipyard in Helsinki, Finland, in 1995, will relocate about 14 miles of cable from its old starting position near Cemetery Point in Wrangell. From there, it wrapped around and down the west side of...

  • Light & Power solves wiring issue with generator

    Caleb Vierkant|Jan 7, 2021

    Early last week, Wrangell Municipal Light & Power repaired an issue involving one of its newer diesel generators. Light & Power Director Rod Rhoades said a computer controlling the generator's output was refusing to detect the generator in question. It was a difficult problem for them to figure out, he said, but was relatively easy to fix with just a simple wire replacement. Rhoades said all of the city's generators are expected to work together, matching their voltage and frequency to meet...

  • Borough Assembly reviews revenues in workshop

    Caleb Vierkant|Dec 17, 2020

    Wrangell Borough Assembly held a workshop last Tuesday, Dec. 8 to review the city's current financial status. That evening's presentation, according to Borough Manager Lisa Von Bargen, was primarily focused on Wrangell's major revenues through November, year-to-date. They will be covering expenses in a future workshop. "This is a snapshot, it's certainly not everything, but as it says here it's some of the major ones." she said. The presentation started with looking at revenues under the city's...

  • Repairs made after stormy week

    Caleb Vierkant|Dec 10, 2020

    Last week saw high winds and stormy weather for many Southeast Alaskan communities. In Haines, there was a landslide that led to several people going missing. According to the Associated Press, in an article on Dec, 7, two people still remain missing and there still is some danger of more landslides. Rainfall in Ketchikan led to a voluntary evacuation order being issued for residents along Ketchikan Creek due to potential dam failure. According to the Anchorage Daily News, in an article updated...

  • SEAPA anticipating future rate increases

    Caleb Vierkant|Oct 29, 2020

    The Southeast Alaska Power Agency provides power to the communities of Wrangell, Petersburg, and Ketchikan. CEO Trey Acteson said they have not had a rate increase in over 23 years, holding steady at 6.8 cents per kWh. However, due to anticipated costs in the near future, he reported that they are expecting a necessary rate increase sometime next year. "It is still a little early in the process to provide a firm number on any potential rate increases, but I can assure you the SEAPA Board...

  • Wet summer overflows Swan Lake

    Brian Varela|Oct 1, 2020

    During Southeast Alaska's record breaking rainfall this summer, the Swan Lake hydroelectric facility reached its full capacity for the first time since the project was upgraded three years ago, according to a press release from Sen. Bert Stedman's office and Southeast Alaska Power Agency. Water levels reached the flashboards and forced a reservoir spill on July 24. The upgrade expanded the capacity of the hydroproject from 86,000 acre-feet to 111,800 acre-feet, according to the press release. Th...

  • Human error causes blackout

    Caleb Vierkant|Oct 1, 2020

    A contractor at Southeast Alaska Power Agency’s Tyee Lake hydroelectric facility accidentally entered an incorrect control system input, resulting in a power outage in Wrangell and Petersburg Saturday morning, said SEAPA CEO Trey Acteson. SEAPA staff were conducting a training session associated with recent control upgrades when the error was made. Tyee Lake generation was lost at 9:15 A.M. on Sept. 26, said Robert Siedman, an electrical engineer with SEAPA. Power was restored 25 minutes later at 9:40 A.M. All the Wrangell and Petersburg c...

  • Power outages in two cities may be linked

    Brian Varela|Jul 30, 2020

    At 12:27 P.M. on Saturday, power went out in parts of Petersburg. Three minutes later, downtown Wrangell was also left in the dark, leaving Petersburg and Wrangell officials to think that the two incidents were related. "The issues in both communities seem too close together to be considered a coincidence, but no one has been able to explain why the cutout failure in Petersburg caused a feeder in Wrangell to drop out," said Petersburg Utility Director Karl Hagerman in a statement to the...

  • Three cities go dark in early morning power outage

    Caleb Vierkant|Jul 9, 2020

    The cities of Wrangell, Petersburg, and Ketchikan all suffered a power outage in the early morning of July 4. Rod Rhoades, light and power director for Wrangell, said that the outage hit Wrangell at 3:05 a.m., but started in Ketchikan. All three communities are connected via the Southeast Alaska Power Agency, meaning they receive and share power from the same sources. While power has been restored, officials are still looking into the cause of the outage. All three cities lost power around 3...

  • Port Commission approves request to relocate submarine cable

    Caleb Vierkant|May 14, 2020

    It was a relatively light meeting of the Wrangell Port Commission last Thursday evening, May 7. There was only one agenda item for the commission to consider, a request by GCI to relocate the landing for a submarine cable. The telecommunication company currently has a submarine cable come onto the beach next to the community garden area, near City Park. From there, according to the meeting's agenda packet, the cable hits aerial lines and goes to its hub building, and also leaves the beach area a...

  • Replacement date for SEAPA line unknown

    Brian Varela|May 7, 2020

    PETERSBURG – Southeast Alaska Power Agency is still in the process of trying to replace a damaged submarine cable that provides Petersburg with power, as complications increase due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Bob Lynn, chairman of the SEAPA board, told the Petersburg Borough Assembly at their meeting on Monday that there are concerns over whether the project can be completed this year. The damaged cable is one of four submarine cables that connects the terminals between Woronofski and Vank islands...

  • SEAPA board hears operations plan update, approves operating budget increases

    Caleb Vierkant|Apr 9, 2020

    The board of directors of the Southeast Alaska Power Agency held a teleconference meeting March 31, to hear an annual operations plan update as well as some operating budget increases, among other items. SEAPA provides hydroelectric power to the communities of Wrangell, Petersburg, and Ketchikan. The board is made up of five voting directors and alternates, who are appointed by their respective communities annually to represent them. The operations plan update, according to the meeting's agenda...

  • Final decision on faulty SEAPA cable by March

    Caleb Vierkant|Feb 6, 2020

    Southeast Alaska Power Agency conducted a survey on a damaged cable running between Woronkofski and Vank islands and the board will make a final decision on whether to repair the cable or replace it by March's board meeting. "We could have up to 20 more years," said Bob Lynn, Petersburg's voting member on the SEAPA board. "We don't know, but the risk is very high on that old cable." Lynn gave the Petersburg Borough Assembly an update on the project at an assembly meeting Monday, but data from th...

  • Wrangell and Petersburg lose power

    Caleb Vierkant and Brian Varela|Jan 16, 2020

    The cities of Wrangell and Petersburg both briefly lost power on Friday morning, Jan. 10. The power outage occurred a little before 11 a.m. and lasted about an hour. Both cities typically receive their electricity from a hydro plant at Tyee Lake, near Bradfield Canal. Rod Rhoades, light and power director for Wrangell, said that there was a "phase to phase fault" in the power line between the lake and the two cities. He speculated that this could mean something like a tree branch fell on the...

  • 2019: A year in review

    Caleb Vierkant|Jan 2, 2020

    Following is the Wrangell Sentinel's news review for January through June of 2019. Next week the review will include events from July through December. January Jan. 13 - The Fairbanks Arts Association opened their 24th annual statewide poetry contest for submissions this December. Each year, the association picks a new judge for the contest. This year will be judged by Wrangell resident Vivian Faith Prescott. Prescott is the author of numerous works, including The Hide of My Tongue and The Dead...

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