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 By Larry Persily    News    August 10, 2022 

State ferry traffic into Wrangell down 90% from a decade ago

More than 6,700 passengers a year boarded a state ferry in Wrangell 2010 through 2015, and more than 6,900 a year walked or drove off the ships during that six-year period. In calendar 2021, those numbers were down to 690 passengers boarding a ferry...

 
 By Marc Lutz    News    August 10, 2022 

New staff among biggest changes at schools as classes set to begin

With the first classes just over two weeks away, students are getting ready to return to their education-filled days. Before that can happen, administrative and teaching staff are prepping classrooms, curriculum and registrations to welcome back...

 
 By Marc Lutz    News    August 10, 2022 

Good deed uncovers stone stairs built in early 1900s

Uncovering historical items can have its ups and downs. In some cases, that's the literal truth. Somewhere around 1915, a set of stairs was built that saw a lot of use over the next 80 years. But...

 
 By James Brooks    News    August 10, 2022 

Permanent Fund lost money for first time since 2012

For the first time in a decade, the Alaska Permanent Fund Corp., source of more than half of Alaska’s general-purpose state revenue, posted negative investment returns for an entire fiscal year. As of June 30, the last day of the just-ended fiscal...

 
 By Marc Lutz    News    August 10, 2022 

New principals preparing for start of school year

As students start school on Aug. 25, two new administrators will be joining them. Ann Hilburn is the new principal for Evergreen Elementary and Bob Burkhart is new the principal for Wrangell High and...

 
 By Sentinel staff    News    August 10, 2022 

At-sea COVID cases drop back down to summer average

After a mid-July surge to 1,021 COVID-19 infections among tourists at sea in a single week, the state Health Department reports the case count the past two weeks fell to an average of 550 per week. The record number of infections among...

 
 By Marc Lutz    News    August 10, 2022 

School board approves four new hires

The school board Aug. 1 held a special meeting to take care of a few last-minute items before the start of classes on Aug. 25. Board members approved the hiring of four staff members for vacant positions. The district hired Krysta Gillen as a...

 
 By Larry Persily    News    August 10, 2022 

Alaska voters will select new member of Congress next Tuesday

Alaska voters will go to the polls next Tuesday to mark their ballots in a couple of firsts: The first election under the state’s new ranked-choice voting system, and the election of Alaska’s first new member of the U.S. House in 49 years. The...

 
 By Sentinel staff    News    August 10, 2022 

Candidacy filing for municipal elections closes Aug. 31

There are three weeks remaining for candidates to file for election to the borough assembly, school board and port commission, and as of Monday no one had submitted their paperwork to run for office, with most incumbents reporting they were still...

 
 By Eric Stone    News    August 10, 2022 

Fundraising just starting for Wrangell legislative races

The candidates to represent Wrangell in the state Legislature have filed their first campaign finance reports for the Aug. 16 primary election. Not surprisingly, House and Senate incumbents have the lead in fundraising. Rep. Dan Ortiz is looking to...

 
 By Iris Samuels    News    August 10, 2022 

Palin skips Kenai candidates forum for Minneapolis fundraiser

One of the three U.S. House candidates was missing at a candidates forum in Kenai on Aug. 3: Former Gov. Sarah Palin instead held a fundraiser in Minneapolis, according to photos she posted on her Instagram account. The next day, she was in Dallas...

 
 By Chris Basinger    News    August 10, 2022 

Petersburg swimmer tried but could not the mainland

At 8 a.m. on July 30, Andrew Simmonds, 60, entered the chilling waters of Sandy Beach in Petersburg, setting out to prove that age has not slowed him down. His goal was to swim across Frederick Sound...

 
 By Max Graham    News    August 10, 2022 

Colorado organization rescues six suspected Haines wolfdogs

While thousands danced and dined at the Southeast Alaska State Fair in Haines last weekend, Drew Robertson of Sedalia, Colorado, was rescuing a half dozen puppies that might be part wolf. The state...

 
 By Mark Thiessen    News    August 10, 2022 

Another bad year for Alaska wildfires, and the worst could be ahead

ANCHORAGE (AP) — Alaska is burning this year in ways rarely or ever seen, from the largest wildfire in a typically mainly fireproof southwest region to a pair of blazes that ripped through forests and produced smoke that blew hundreds of miles to...

 

Anchorage, Fairbanks school districts short of bus drivers

Students return to school soon, and Alaska’s larger districts are facing a shortage of school bus drivers. The Anchorage School District was short 75 bus drivers less than two weeks before classes begin on Aug. 18. The shortage could lead to some...

 

Murkowski part of bipartisan group in support of abortion access

WASHINGTON — Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski on Aug. 1 joined a bipartisan coalition to introduce a bill that would protect abortion and contraception access. The measure faces an uncertain future in a Senate that failed to pass a broader measure...

 

Petersburg assembly sets up task force to look at housing shortage

The Petersburg Borough Assembly voted 4-1 on Aug. 1 to establish a new task force to address the community’s housing crisis. Assemblymember Jeff Meucci said the task force would work with the assembly’s backing to look at housing needs in the...

 
 By Garland Kennedy    News    August 10, 2022 

Sitka 9-year-old reels in 45-pound king

For many Southeast residents, fishing is a way to fill the freezer or earn a living. But for Sitka’s 9-year-old Miles Lawrie, fishing is a chance to spend time with his grandparents on the water. It was a bonus for Miles when, while fishing with...

 
 By Garland Kennedy    News    August 10, 2022 

Sitka starts site prep for small cabins to house homeless

After years of work and planning, site preparation is underway for the cabins to house Sitka’s homeless people. The plan is to build a dozen small cabins at the end of Jarvis Street, about a mile east of the downtown waterfront. The Sitka Homeless...

 
 By Larry Persily    News    August 3, 2022

Assembly moves toward putting building repairs bond issues on ballot

The borough assembly has taken the first step toward seeking voter approval for borrowing up to $15 million to pay for long-needed repairs at the Public Safety Building and school buildings. The assembly last week voted to hold a special meeting...

 
 By Marc Lutz    News    August 3, 2022

School maintenance crew prepares buildings for return of students, staff

One by one, facilities staff is checking off their to-do list in preparation for the first day of classes Aug. 25. Each building in the school district has items that need fixing, patching, painting a...

 
 By Eric Stone    News    August 3, 2022

Invasive European crabs found at Annette Island

An invasive species with the potential to wreak havoc on important commercial and subsistence fisheries has been found in Alaska for the first time. Biologists with the Metlakatla Indian Community...

 
 By Marc Lutz    News    August 3, 2022

Class gives tips on staying safe in bear country (hint: carry pepper spray)

It's safe to assume that people can avoid bear encounters if they stay out of a bear's natural habitat. Since that's likely not to happen in Southeast, a BearFest safety course offered advice on stayi...

 
 By Larry Persily    News    August 3, 2022

Borough hopes to start clearing land at former Institute property next year

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is moving ahead with its review of the borough’s wetlands fill permit application to develop the former Wrangell Institute property for residential lots. The borough hopes to start ground-clearing work next year,...

 
 By Larry Persily    News    August 3, 2022

Borough will use surplus property website to try selling former hospital

The borough will list Wrangell’s former hospital building on a nationwide surplus public property website, hoping for better results than efforts the past two months which resulted in not a single bid. “We’ve got to get rid of this,” Mayor...

 

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